Angouleme (Iculisma) was taken by Clovis from the Visigoths in 507, and plundered by the Normans in the 9th century.
With the rest of the north of England, Bridlington suffered from the ravages of the Normans, and decreased in value from £32 in the reign of Edward the Confessor, when it formed part of the possessions of Earl Morcar, to 8s.
His most important act was the treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte with the Normans in 911.
Bergen-op-Zoom is a very old town, but little is known of its early history beyond the fact that it was taken by the Normans in 880.
In 1081 the Normans under Robert Guiscard possessed themselves of Durazzo; Guiscard's son Bohemund defeated the Greeks in several battles and again (i 107) laid siege to Durazzo, which had been surrendered to them by treachery; failing to take the city, he retired to Italy in 1109.
Although in the course of its long history it has undergone many sieges and was sacked at various epochs by the Vandals, Normans, French and Spaniards, it preserves many monuments of its ancient days.
Twelve years later we find the Normans settled at Aversa under their Count Rainuif.
Having consolidated their possessions on the mainland, the Normans, under Robert Guiscards brother, the great Count Roger, undertook the conquest of Sicily in 1060.
It is mentioned so early as the 7th century and in 868 Baldwin of the Iron Arm, first count of Flanders, who had been entrusted by Charles the Bald with the defence of the northern marches, built a castle here against the Normans raiding up the Scheldt.
NORMANS, the softened form of the word "Northman," applied first to the people of Scandinavia in general, and afterwards specially to the people of Norway.
From one point of view the expeditions of the Normans may be looked on as continuations of the expeditions of the Northmen.
But in the view of general history Normans and Northmen must be carefully distinguished.
Like as the Norman still is to the Northman, the effects of a settlement of Normans are utterly different from the effects of a settlement of Northmen.
There can be no doubt that the establishment of the Norman power in England was, like the establishment of the Danish power, greatly helped by the essential kindred of Normans, Danes and English.
In fact the Normans met with the steadiest resistance in a part of England which was largely Danish.
These two conquests, wrought in the great island of the Ocean and in the great island of the Mediterranean, were the main works of the Normans after they had fully put on the character of a Christian and French-speaking people, in other words, after they had changed from Northmen into Normans.
The same spirit of enterprise which brought the Northmen into Gaul seems to carry the Normans out of Gaul into every corner of the world.
He sets the Normans before us as a race specially marked by cunning, despising their own inheritance in the hope of winning a greater, eager after both gain and dominion, given to imitation of all kinds, holding a certain mean between lavishness and greediness - that is, perhaps uniting, as they certainly did, these two seemingly opposite qualities.
The cunning of the Normans is plain enough; so is their impatience of restraint, unless held down by a strong master.
If Normans, as Normans, now exist anywhere, it is certainly only in that insular fragment of the ancient duchy which still cleaves to the successor of its ancient dukes.
But Geoffrey hardly did justice to the Normans if he meant to imply that they were simple imitators of others.
The Normans did just the same.
It is perhaps less wonderful that this characteristic should have been left out in a picture of the Normans in Apulia and Sicily than if it had been left out in a picture of the Normans in Normandy and England.
The Conqueror beyond doubt sincerely aimed at being a religious reformer both in his duchy and in his kingdom, while it is needless to say that his immediate successor was exceptionally ungodly, whether among Normans or among other men.
His disappearance in both cases is an illustration of one of the features which we have spoken of in the Norman character, the tendency which in fact made Normans out of Northmen, the tendency to adopt the language and manners of the people among whom they found themselves.
By the end of the 12th century the Normans in England might fairly pass as Englishmen, and they had largely adopted the use of the English language.
The Normans in England therefore became Englishmen, because there was an English nation into which they could be absorbed.
The Normans in Sicily could hardly be said to become Sicilians, for there assuredly was no Sicilian nation for them to be absorbed into.
While the Normans in England were lost among the people of the land, the Normans in Sicily were lost among their fellow-settlers in the land.
The Normans who came into Sicily must have been much less purely Norman than the Normans who came into England.
The army of Duke William was undoubtedly very far from being wholly made up of Normans, but it was a Norman army; the element which was not Norman, though considerable, was exceptional.
Still there was a wide difference between the duke of the Normans and the duke of Apulia, between an hereditary prince of a hundred and fifty years' standing and an adventurer who had carved out his duchy for himself.
And the circumstances of his conquest were such that the true Normans among his following could not possibly lose themselves among the existing inhabitants of the island, while everything tended to make them lose themselves among their fellow-adventurers of other races, among whom, by the time the conquest was ended, they could hardly have been even a dominant element.
The Normans in England did not die out; they were merged in the existing nation.
The Normans in Sicily, so far as they did not die out, were merged, not in a Sicilian nation, for that did not exist, but in the common mass of settlers of Latin speech and rite, as distinguished from the older inhabitants, Greek and Saracen.
There is a distinction between Christians and Saracens; among Christians there seems to be again a distinction between Greeks and Latins, though perhaps without any distinct use of the Latin name; there is again a further distinction between "Lombardi" and "Franci"; but Normans, as a separate class, do not appear.
That is to say, there were several purposes for which it was convenient to distinguish "English" and "French" - the last name taking in all the followers of the Conqueror; there were no purposes for which there was any need to distinguish Normans as such, either from the general mass of the people or from others who spoke the French tongue.
French, the language which the Normans brought with them, did not become an official language in England till after strictly Norman rule had passed away.
French, as a separate tongue from Latin, already existed as a literary speech, and no people had done more than the Normans to spread it as a literary speech, in both prose and verse.
Both Normans and English came to Scotland in crowds in the days of Margaret, Edgar and David, and Scottish national feeling sometimes rose up against them.
At least Giraldus Cambrensis, the Norman Welshman or Welsh Norman, was certainly more alive to the distinction between Normans and English than any other of his contemporaries.
In Sicily the Normans found the two most outwardly civilized of the nations of Europe, the two which had as yet carried the arts to the highest pitch.
They had simply to make Saracen and Greek work in partnership. In England, on the other hand, the Normans did really bring in a new style of their own, their own form of Romanesque, differing widely indeed from the Saracenic style of Sicily.
To this style it is no wonder that the Normans preferred their own, and that style therefore supplanted the older one.
Where, as in Sicily, the Normans felt that they could not improve, they simply adopted the style of the country.
F.) For a bibliography of the Normans and Northmen see Ulysse Chevalier, Repertoire des sources hist.
Many sources for the history of the Normans were collected by Andre Du Chesne in his Hist.
Johnson, The Normans in Europe (1877); E.
Of the Normans in S.
The men of Rus, or Variags, as they were sometimes called, were simply the hardy Norsemen or Normans who at that time, in various countries of Europe, appeared first as armed marauders and then lived in the invaded territory as a dominant military caste until they were gradually absorbed by the native population.