Battle of Tours

The Battle of Tours occurred on October 732. It is also known as the Battle of Poitiers or ‘’Battle of the Palace of Martyrs’’. The Battle of Tours was fought near the villages of Moussais-la-Bataille (20 km) in north-central France, between the cities of Tours and Poitiers. At that time, the battle was close to the border between Aquitaine and Frankish realm. The Burgundian and Frankish forces were led by the Austrasian Mayor of the Palace Charles Martel. The opposite forces, Umayyad Caliphate, were led by 'Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi.

The Franks won this battle and Charles extended his territory in the south. 'Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi didn’t survive this battle. After the battle, Charles got the nickname ‘’The Hammer’’ (Martellus), thanks to the 9th-century chroniclers. Other details that should provide exact information about the location and the number of soldiers are unknown. Apparently, Frankish troops didn’t have any cavalry. According to some sources, Charles had between 15.000 and 20.000 soldiers. 'Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi had between 20.000 and 25.000.

Historians that lived in pre-20th centuries praised Charles as the champion of the Christianity because the Battle of Tours was a decisive point in the struggle against Islam. They believed that this battle saved Christianity as the religion of Europe. According to several modern historians, like Victor Davis Hanson, this battle stopped the Muslim advance through Europe. On the other side, this battle may help Frankish domination of Europe in the period after it and it helped lay the foundation of the Carolingian Empire. Anyway, many historians agree that the Battle of Tours confirmed the Frankish power and shaped the future of Europe. 

 

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