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Encyclopedia > Eastern Empire
Byzantine Empire

Emblem of the Palaeologus dynasty, as preserved today at the entrance of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul (Constantinople).
330 Constantine makes Constantinople his capital.
395 The Empire is permanently split into Eastern and Western halves, following the death of Theodosius I.
527 Justinian I becomes emperor.
532-537
Justinian builds the church of Hagia Sophia (Αγία Σοφία/Holy Wisdom)
533-554 Justinian's general reconquer North Africa and Italy from the Vandals and Ostrogoths.
568 The Lombard invasion results in the loss of most of Italy.
634-641 Arab armies conquer the Levant and Egypt. In the following decades, they take most of North Africa, and later conquer Sicily as well.
730-787; 813-843 Iconoclasm controversies. This results in the loss of most of the Empire's remaining Italian territories, aside from some territories in the south.
1054 The Church in Rome breaks with the Church in Constantinople.
1071 The Emperor Romanus IV is defeated by the Seljuk Turks at the Battle of Manzikert. Most of Asia Minor is lost. The same year, the last Byzantine outposts in Italy are conquered by the Normans.
1204 Constantinople is occupied by crusaders; Latin empire formed.
1261 Constantinople is liberated by the Byzantine emperor of Nicaea, Michael Palaeologus.
1453 Ottoman Turks take Constantinople. End of Byzantine Empire.

The Byzantine Empire is the term conventionally used to describe the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages, centered at its capital in Constantinople. In certain specific contexts, usually referring to the centuries that marked the fall of the Western Roman Empire, it is also often referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire. There is no consensus on the starting date of the Byzantine period. Some place it during the reign of Diocletian (284-305) due to the administrative reforms he introduced, dividing the empire into a pars Orientis and a pars Occidentis. Others place it during the reign of Theodosius I (379-395) and Christendom's triumph over paganism, or, following his death in 395, with the division of the empire into Western and Eastern halves. Others place it yet further in 476, when the last western emperor, Romulus Augustus, was forced to abdicate, thus leaving to the emperor in the Greek East sole imperial authority. In any case, the changeover was gradual and by 330, when Constantine the Great inaugaurated his new capital, the process of Hellenization and Christianization was well underway. Byzantine Empire emblem File links The following pages link to this file: Byzantine Empire ... The Palaeologus family was the last dynasty ruling the Byzantine Empire. ... Events May 11 - Constantine I refounds Byzantium, renames it New Rome, and moves the capital of the Roman Empire there from Rome. ... Events After the death of emperor Theodosius I, the Roman Empire is divided in an eastern and a western half. ... This article is about the year. ... Events January 11 - Nika riots in Constantinople; the cathedral is destroyed. ... Events Pope Silverius deposed by Belisarius at the order of Justinian, who appoints as his successor Pope Vigilius. ... Events February 1 - John becomes Pope, succeeding Pope Boniface II, who had died in 532. ... Events The Byzantine general Narses reconquers all of Italy. ... The Vandals were an East Germanic tribe that entered the late Roman Empire, and created a state in North Africa, centered on the city of Carthage. ... This article deals with the continental Ostrogoths. ... Events April 1 - King Alboin leads the Lombards into Italy; refugees fleeing from them go on to found Venice. ... The Lombards were a Germanic tribe in history. ... Events The Arabs invade Palestine. ... Events Founding of the city of Fostat, later Cairo, in Egypt. ... Events Emperor Leo III of the Byzantine Empire orders the destruction of all icons. ... This article is about the year 787. ... Events June 22 - Byzantine Emperor Michael I is defeated in a war against the Bulgarians. ... Events Treaty of Verdun divides the Carolingian empire between the 3 sons of Louis the Pious. ... Events Cardinal Humbertus, a representative of Pope Leo IX, and Michael Cerularius, Patriarch of Constantinople, decree each others excommunication. ... Events Byzantine Empire loses Battle of Manzikert to Turkish army under Alp Arslan. ... The Seljuk Turks (Turkish: Selçuk; Arabic: سلجوق Saljūq, السلاجقة al-Salājiqa; Persian: سلجوقيان Saljūqiyān; also Seldjuk, Seldjuq, Seljuq) were a major branch of the Oghuz Turks and a dynasty that occupied parts of Central Asia and the Middle East from the 11th to 14th centuries. ... The Battle of Manzikert (Turkish Malazgirt Savaşı) occurred on August 26, 1071 between the Byzantine Empire and Seljuk Turkish forces led by Alp Arslan, resulting in the defeat of the Byzantine Empire and the capture of Emperor Romanus IV Diogenes. ... This article talks about the Norman people. ... Events February - Byzantine emperor Alexius IV is overthrown in a revolution, and Alexius V is proclaimed emperor. ... Events July 25 - Constantinople re-captured by Nicaean forces under the command of Michael VIII Palaeologus, Byzantine Empire re-formed August 29 - Urban IV becomes Pope, the last man to do so without being a Cardinal first Bela IV of Hungary repels Tatar invasion Charles of Anjou given rule of... Nicaea is also the ancient name of the French city Nice. ... Events May 29 - Fall of Constantinople to Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II the Conqueror, marking the end of the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire). ... Roman Empire between AD 60 and 400 with major cities. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... Map of Constantinople. ... The Western Roman Empire is the name given to the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian. ... Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus ( 245- 313 AD/CE), born Diocles, was Roman Emperor from November 20, 284 to May 1, 305. ... Flavius Theodosius (Cauca [Coca-Segovia], Spain, January 11, 347 - Milan, January 17, 395), also called Theodosius I and Theodosius the Great, was a Roman emperor. ... Flavius Romulus Augustus (460s/470s – after 511), often called Romulus Augustulus, was the last of the Western Roman Emperors. ... Constantine. ... The term Hellenistic (established by the German historian Johann Gustav Droysen) in the history of the ancient world is used to refer to the shift from a culture dominated by ethnic Greeks, however scattered geographically, to a culture dominated by Greek-speakers of whatever ethnicity, and from the political dominance... The historical phenomenon of Christianization, the conversion of individuals to Christianity or the conversion of entire peoples at once (a political shift as much as a spontaneous mass shift in individual consciences), also includes the practice of converting pagan cult practices, pagan religious imagery, pagan sites and the pagan calendar...

Contents

The term "Byzantine Empire"

The term "Byzantine Empire" is a modernist construction and would have appeared alien to its contemporaries. The term was invented in 1557, about a century after the fall of Constantinople by German historian Hieronymus Wolf, who introduced a system of Byzantine historiography in his work Corpus Historiae Byzantinae in order to distinguish ancient Roman from medieval Greek history. Standardization of the term did not occur until the 17th century when French authors such as Montesquieu began to popularize it. Hieronymus himself was influenced by the rift caused by the 9th century dispute between Romans (Byzantines as we render them today) and Franks, who, under Charlemagne's newly formed empire, and in concert with the Pope, attempted to legitimize their conquests by claiming inheritance of Roman rights in Italy thereby renouncing their eastern neighbours as true Romans. The Donation of Constantine, one of the most famous forged documents in history, played a crucial role in this. Henceforth, it was fixed policy in the West to refer to the emperor in Constantinople not by the usual "Imperator Romanorum" (Emperor of the Romans) which was now reserved for the Frankish monarch, but as "Imperator Graecorum" (Emperor of the Greeks) and the land as "Imperium Graecorum", "Graecia", "Terra Graecorum" or even "Imperium Constantinopolitanus". The 1453 Siege of Constantinople (painted 1499) The Fall of Constantinople was the conquest of that Greek city by the Ottoman Empire under the command of Sultan Mehmed II, on Tuesday, May 29, 1453. ... Hieronymus Wolf Hieronymus Wolf (1516 - 1580) was a sixteenth century German historian and humanist, most famous for introducing a system Byzantine historiography that eventually became the standard in works of medieval Greek history. ... Montesquieu can refer to: Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu Several communes of France: Montesquieu, in the Hérault département Montesquieu, in the Lot-et-Garonne département Montesquieu, in the Tarn-et-Garonne département This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the... Roman or Romans has several meanings, primarily related to the Roman citizens, but also applicable to typography, math, and a commune. ... The Franks were one of several west Germanic tribes who entered the late Roman Empire from Frisia as foederati and established a lasting realm in an area that covers most of modern-day France and the region of Franconia in Germany, forming the historic kernel of both these two modern... A Frankish king, like Charlemagne, (center) depicted in the Sacramentary of Charles the Bald (about 870) Charlemagne (c. ... The Pope is the Catholic Bishop and patriarch of Rome, and head of the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Catholic Churches. ... The Donation of Constantine (Latin, Constitutum Donatio Constantini) is a fraudulent Roman imperial edict, supposedly issued by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in AD 324, which purported to grant Pope Sylvester I and his successors sovereignty and spiritual authority over Rome, Italy, and the entire Western Roman Empire. ...


This served as a precedent for Hieronymus who was motivated, at least partly, to re-interpret Roman history in different terms. Nevertheless, this was not intended in a demeaning manner since he ascribed his changes to historiography and not history itself.


Identity

"Byzantium may be defined as a multi-ethnic empire that emerged as a Christian empire, soon comprised the Hellenized empire of the East and ended its thousand year history, in 1453, as a Greek Orthodox state: An empire that became a nation, almost by the modern meaning of the word".1 Byzantium was the original name of the modern city of Istanbul. ... Greek Orthodox Church can refer to any of several hierarchical churches within the larger group of mutually recognizing Eastern Orthodox churches: the Orthodox Church of Constantinople, headed by the Patriarch of Constantinople, who is also the first among equals of the Eastern Orthodox Communion. ... A nation is an imagined community of people created by a national ideology, to which certain norms and behavior are usually attributed. ...


In the centuries following the Arab and Lombard conquests in the 7th century, its multi-ethnic (albeit not multi-national) nature remained even though its constituent parts in the Balkans and Asia Minor contained an overwhelmingly Greek population. Ethnic minorities and sizeable communities of religious heretics often lived on or near the borderlands, the Armenians being the only sizeable one. There are three factors which may assist to varying degrees in determining whether someone is considered Arab or not: Political: whether they live in a country which is a member of the Arab League (or, more vaguely, the Arab world); this definition covers more than 300 million people. ... The Lombards were a Germanic tribe in history. ... ( 6th century - 7th century - 8th century - other centuries) Events Islam starts in Arabia, the Quran is written, and Arabs subjugate Syria, Iraq, Persia, Egypt, North Africa and Central Asia to Islam. ... The Balkans is the historic and geographic name used to describe southeastern Europe (see the Definitions and boundaries section below). ... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to the Asian portion of Turkey. ...


Byzantines identified themselves as Ρωμαίοι (Rhomaioi - Romans) which had already become a synonym for a Έλλην (Hellene - Greek), and more than ever before were developing a national consciousness, as residents of Ρωμανία (Romania, as the Byzantine state and its world were called). This nationalist awareness is reflected in literature, particularily in the acritic songs, where frontiersmen (ακρίτες) are praised for defending their country against invaders, of which most famous is the heroic or epic poem Digenis Acritas. Roman or Romans has several meanings, primarily related to the Roman citizens, but also applicable to typography, math, and a commune. ... This article or section should include material from Greeks According to Thucydides, Hellenes were the people of Hellas. ... The acritic songs, ακριτικά τραγούδια or frontiersmen songs, is the heroic or epic poetry that emerged out of 10th century Byzantium and was inspired by the almost continuous state of warfare with the Arabs in eastern Asia Minor. ... In mathematics, see epic morphism. ... Digenis Acritas - Wikipedia /**/ @import /skins/monobook/IE50Fixes. ...


The official dissolution of the Byzantine state in the 15th century did not immediately undo Byzantine society. During the Ottoman occupation Greeks continued to identify themselves as both Ρωμαίοι (Romans) and Έλληνες (Hellenes), a trait that survived into the early 21st century and still persists today in modern Greece, albeit the former has now retreated to a secondary folkish name rather than a national synonym as in the past. (14th century - 15th century - 16th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 15th century was that century which lasted from 1401 to 1500. ... The Battle of Navarino, in October 1827, marked the effective end of Ottoman Rule in Greece Greece was part of the Ottoman Empire from the 14th century until its declaration of independence in 1821. ... (20th century - 21st century - 22nd century - other centuries) Definition In calendars based on the Christian Era or Common Era, such as the Gregorian calendar, the 21st century is the current century, as of this writing, lasting from 2000-2099. ...


Origin

Map of Roman empire after Diocletian's reforms

Caracalla's decree in 212, the Constitutio Antoniniana, extended citizenship outside of Italy to all free adult males in the entire Roman Empire, effectively raising provincial populations to equal status with the city of Rome itself. The importance of this decree is historical rather than political. It set the basis for integration where the economic and judicial mechanisms of the state could be applied around the entire Mediterranean as was once done from Latium into all of Italy. Of course, integration did not take place uniformly. Societies already integrated with Rome such as Greece were favored by this decree, compared with those far away, too poor or just too alien such as Britain, Palestine or Egypt. Roman empire during Diocletian File links The following pages link to this file: Tetrarchy Western Roman Empire ... Location within Italy The Roman Colosseum Rome (Italian and Latin: Roma) is the capital city of Italy and of its Latium region. ... Latium (now Lazio in Italian) is a region of central Italy, bordered by Tuscany, Umbria, Abruzzo, Molise, Campania and the Tyrrhenian Sea. ... The term Palestine may refer to: Palestine: A geographical region in the Middle East, centered on Jerusalem. ...


The division of the Empire began with the Tetrarchy (quadrumvirate) in the late 3rd century with Emperor Diocletian, as an institution intended to more efficiently control the vast Roman Empire. He split the Empire in half, with two emperors ruling from Italy and Greece, each having a co-emperor of their own. This division continued into the 4th century until 324 when Constantine the Great managed to become the sole Emperor of the Empire. Constantine decided to found a new capital for himself and chose Byzantium for that purpose. The rebuilding process was completed in 330. The Tetrarchs, a porphyry sculpture sacked from a Byzantine palace in 1204 CE, Treasury of St. ... (2nd century - 3rd century - 4th century - other centuries) Events The Sassanid dynasty of Persia launches a war to reconquer lost lands in the Roman east. ... Roman Emperor is the title historians use to refer to the ruler of the Roman Empire. ... Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus ( 245- 313 AD/CE), born Diocles, was Roman Emperor from November 20, 284 to May 1, 305. ... (3rd century - 4th century - 5th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 4th century was that century which lasted from 301 to 400. ... Events Constantine becomes the sole emperor of the Roman Empire. ... Constantine. ... Events May 11 - Constantine I refounds Byzantium, renames it New Rome, and moves the capital of the Roman Empire there from Rome. ...


Constantine renamed the city Nova Roma but in popular use it was called Constantinople (in Greek, Κωνσταντινούπολις, meaning Constantine's City). This new capital became the centre of his administration. Constantine was also the first Christian emperor. Although the empire was not yet "Byzantine" under Constantine, Christianity would become one of the defining characteristics of the Byzantine Empire, as opposed to the pagan Roman Empire. New Rome is a term that can be applied to a city or a country. ... Map of Constantinople. ... Christianity is an Abrahamic religion based on the life, teachings, death by crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth as described in the New Testament. ... Within a European Christian context, paganism is a catch-all term which has come to connote a broad set of not necessarily compatible religious beliefs and practices (see Cult (religion)) of a natural religion (as opposed to a revealed religion of a text), which are usually, but not necessarily, characterized...


Another defining moment in the history of the Roman/Byzantine Empire was the Battle of Adrianople in 378. This defeat, along with the death of Emperor Valens, is one possible date for dividing the ancient and medieval worlds. The Roman empire was divided further by Valens' successor Theodosius I (also called "the great"), who had ruled both beginning in 392. In 395 he gave the two halves to his two sons Arcadius and Honorius; Arcadius became ruler in the East, with his capital in Constantinople, and Honorius became ruler in the west, with his capital in Ravenna. At this point it is common to refer to the empire as "Eastern Roman" rather than "Byzantine." For other uses, see Battle of Adrianople (disambiguation). ... Events Mid-February: Lentienses cross frozen Rhine, invading Roman Empire. ... Arian Valens (328 – August 9, 378) was Roman emperor from 364 until his death, after he was given the Eastern part of the empire by his brother Valentinian I. His father was the general Gratian the Elder. ... Flavius Theodosius (Cauca [Coca-Segovia], Spain, January 11, 347 - Milan, January 17, 395), also called Theodosius I and Theodosius the Great, was a Roman emperor. ... Events August 22 - Arbogast elevates Eugenius as Roman Emperor. ... Events After the death of emperor Theodosius I, the Roman Empire is divided in an eastern and a western half. ... Flavius Arcadius ( 377/ 378– May 1, 408) was Roman Emperor in the Eastern half of the Roman Empire from 395 until his death. ... Bronze coin bearing the profile of Honorius Flavius Augustus Honorius (September 9, 384–August 15, 423) was Emperor of the Western Roman Empire from 395 until his death. ... For other places named Ravenna, see Ravenna (disambiguation). ...


Early history

The Eastern Empire was largely spared the difficulties of the west in the 3rd and 4th centuries (see Crisis of the Third Century), in part because urban culture was better established there and the initial invasions were attracted to the wealth of Rome. Throughout the 5th century various invasions conquered the western half of the empire, but at best could only demand tribute from the eastern half. Theodosius II expanded the walls of Constantinople, leaving the city impenetrable to attacks. Zeno I ruled the east as the empire in the west finally collapsed in 476. Zeno negotiated with the Goths, ending their threats to the east but leaving them in control of the west. (2nd century - 3rd century - 4th century - other centuries) Events The Sassanid dynasty of Persia launches a war to reconquer lost lands in the Roman east. ... (3rd century - 4th century - 5th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 4th century was that century which lasted from 301 to 400. ... The Crisis of the Third Century is a commonly applied name for the crumbling and near collapse of the Roman Empire between 235 and 275. ... Location within Italy The Roman Colosseum Rome (Italian and Latin: Roma) is the capital city of Italy and of its Latium region. ... ( 4th century - 5th century - 6th century - other centuries) Events Rome sacked by Visigoths in 410. ... Theodosius II Flavius Theodosius II (April, 401 - July 28, 450 ). The eldest son of Eudoxia and Arcadius who at the age of 7 became the Roman Emperor of the East. ... Map of Constantinople. ... Imperator Caesar Flavius Zeno Augustus or Tarasicodissa or Trascalissaeus (c. ... Events August - The usurper Basiliscus is deposed and Zeno is restored as Eastern Roman Emperor. ... This article is about the Germanic tribes. ...

Map of the Byzantine Empire around 550. Green indicates the conquests during the reign of Justinian I.

The 6th century saw the beginning of the conflicts with the Byzantine Empire's traditional early enemies, the Persians, Slavs and Bulgars. Theological crises, such as the question of Monophysitism, also dominated the empire. However, the Eastern Empire had not forgotten its western roots. Under Justinian I, and the brilliant general Belisarius, the empire temporarily regained some of the lost Roman provinces in the west, conquering much of Italy, north Africa, and Spain. Map of the Byzantine Empire around 550. ... Map of the Byzantine Empire around 550. ... Events End of the Eastern Wei Dynasty and beginning of the Northern Qi Dynasty in northern China. ... (5th century — 6th century — 7th century — other centuries) Events The first academy of the east the Academy of Gundeshapur founded in Persia by the Persian Shah Khosrau I. Irish colonists and invaders, the Scots, began migrating to Caledonia (later known as Scotland) Glendalough monastery, Wicklow Ireland founded by St. ... Persian art is conscious of a great past, and monumental in many respects. ... The Slavic peoples are the most numerous ethnic and linguistic body of peoples in Europe. ... Bulgars (also Bolgars or proto-Bulgarians) a people of Central Asia, probably originally Pamirian, whose branches became Slavicized over time. ... Monophysitism (from the Greek monos meaning one and physis meaning nature) is the christological position that Christ has only one nature, as opposed to the Chalcedonian position which holds that Christ has two natures, one divine and one human. ... Justinian I, depicted on a contemporary coin Flavius Petrus Sabbatius Iustinianus or Justinian I (May 11, 483–November 13/14, 565), was Eastern Roman Emperor from AD August 1, 527 until his death. ... Belisarius, by Jacques-Louis David (1781); the depiction is now believed to be fictionalized. ... World map showing location of Africa A satellite composite image of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest continent in both area and population, after Asia. ...


Justinian updated the ancient Roman legal code in the new Corpus Juris Civilis, although it is notable that these laws were still written in Latin, a language which was becoming archaic and poorly understood even by those who wrote the new code. Under Justinian's reign, the Church of Agía Sofía (Holy Wisdom) was constructed in the 530s. This church would become the centre of Byzantine religious life and the centre of the Eastern Orthodox form of Christianity. The sixth century was also a time of flourishing culture (although Justinian closed the university at Athens), producing the epic poet Nonnus, the lyric poet Paul the Silentiary, the historian Procopius and the natural philosopher John Philoponos, among other notable talents. The Corpus Juris Civilis (Body of Civil Law) is a fundamental work in jurisprudence issued from 529 to 534 by order of Justinian I, Byzantine Emperor. ... Hagia Sofia, Istanbul, Turkey, June 1994 The Church of the Holy Wisdom, variously known as Hagia Sophia (Άγια Σοφία) in Greek, Sancta Sophia in Latin or Ayasofya in Turkish, is a former Greek Orthodox church and mosque now a museum, in Istanbul, formerly Constantinople. ... Centuries: 5th century - 6th century - 7th century Decades: 480s - 490s _ 500s - 510s - 520s - 530s - 540s - 550s - 560s - 570s - 580s Years: 530 531 532 533 534 535 536 537 538 539 540 Events and Trends Hagia Sophia, Constantinople, built (532_537) General Belisarius defeats the Vandals in North Africa, and brings... ...


Justinian left his successors an empty treasury, however, and they were unable to deal with the sudden appearance of new invaders on all fronts. The Lombards invaded and conquered much of Italy, the Avars and later the Bulgars overwhelmed much of the Balkans, and in the early 7th century the Persians invaded and conquered Egypt, Palestine, Syria and Armenia. The Persians were defeated and the territories were recovered by the emperor Heraclius in 627, but the unexpected appearance of the newly converted and united Muslim Arabs took by surprise an empire exhausted by the titanic effort against Persia, and the southern provinces were all overrun. Mesopotamia, Syria, Egypt, and the Exarchate of Africa were permanently incorporated into the Muslim Empire in the 7th century, a process which was completed with the fall of Carthage to the Caliphate in 698. The Lombards continued to expand in northern Italy, taking Ligura in 640 and conquering most of the Exarchate of Ravenna in 751, leaving the Byzantines with control only of small areas around the toe and heel of Italy. The Lombards (Latin Langobardi, from which the alternative name Longobards found in older English texts), were a Germanic people originally from Scandinavia that entered the late Roman Empire. ... The Balkans is the historic and geographic name used to describe southeastern Europe (see the Definitions and boundaries section below). ... Flavius Heraclius Augustus (c. ... Events April 11 - Paulinus, a Roman missionary, baptizes King Edwin of Deira December 12 - Battle of Nineveh: Byzantine Emperor Heraclius defeats the Persians Births Deaths November 10 - Justus, Archbishop of Canterbury Categories: 627 ... Islam (Arabic al-islām الإسلام,  listen) the submission to God is a monotheistic faith and the worlds second-largest religion. ... There are three factors which may assist to varying degrees in determining whether someone is considered Arab or not: Political: whether they live in a country which is a member of the Arab League (or, more vaguely, the Arab world); this definition covers more than 300 million people. ... Introduction Exarch is from the Latin; Exarchus, Greek; Exarchon; Meaning Leader, from the word exarchein to lead, to begin, to rule. ... ( 6th century - 7th century - 8th century - other centuries) Events Islam starts in Arabia, the Quran is written, and Arabs subjugate Syria, Iraq, Persia, Egypt, North Africa and Central Asia to Islam. ... Events Tiberius III deposes Leontius II and becomes Byzantine Emperor. ... The Lombards (Latin Langobardi, from which the alternative name Longobards found in older English texts), were a Germanic people originally from Scandinavia that entered the late Roman Empire. ... The Exarchate of Ravenna was a center of Byzantine power in Italy, from the end of the 6th century to 751 A.D., when the last Exarch was put to death by the Emperors enemies in Italy, the Lombards. ... Events Pippin the Short is elected as king of the Franks by the Frankish nobility, marking the end of the Merovingian and beginning of the Carolingian dynasty. ...


Hellenizing era

What the empire lost in territory, though, it made up in uniformity. Heraclius fully Hellenized the empire by making Greek the official language, thus ending the last remnants of Latin and ancient Roman tradition within the Empire. For example the Latin language in government, Latin titles like Augustus and the idea of the empire being one with Rome were rapidly dissolved, allowing the empire to pursue its own identity. Many historians mark sweeping reforms during the reign Heraclius as the breaking point with Byzantium’s ancient Roman past, and it is common to refer to the empire as “Byzantine” instead of “East Roman” after this point. The empire was also by now noticeably different in religion from the former imperial lands in western Europe, although the southern Byzantine provinces differed significantly from the north in culture and practiced Monophysite (rather than Chalcedonian Orthodox) Christianity. The loss of the southern provinces to the Arabs made Orthodoxy stronger in the remaining provinces. Monophysitism (from the Greek monos meaning one and physis meaning nature) is the christological position that Christ has only one nature, as opposed to the Chalcedonian position which holds that Christ has two natures, one divine and one human. ... ... Christianity is an Abrahamic religion based on the life, teachings, death by crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth as described in the New Testament. ...


Constans II (reigned 641 - 668) divided the empire into a system of military provinces called thémata (themes) to face permanent assault, with urban life declining outside the capital while Constantinople grew to become the largest city in the Christian world. Attempts by the Arabs to conquer Constantinople failed in the face of the Byzantines' superior navy, their monopoly of the still mysterious incendiary weapon Greek fire, the city's strong walls, and the skill of warrior emperors such as Leo III the Isaurian (reign 717 - 741). After repelling the Arab assaults, the empire began to recover. Constans II on a contemporary coin Constans Heraclius Pogonatus, known in English as Constans II, ( November 7, 630– September 15, 668) was Byzantine emperor from 641 to 668. ... Events Founding of the city of Fostat, later Cairo, in Egypt. ... Events Childeric II succeeds Clotaire III as Frankish king Constantine IV becomes Byzantine Emperor, succeeding Constans II Theodore of Tarsus made archbishop of Canterbury. ... Themes (singular thema) were administrative units of land in the Byzantine Empire. ... Depiction of Greek fire in the Madrid Skylitzes manuscript Greek fire (also called Byzantine fire and liquid fire) was a weapon used by the Byzantine Empire, said to have been invented by a Syrian Christian refugee named Kallinikos of Heliopolis. ... Leo III (disambiguation). ... Isauria, in ancient geography, is a district in the interior of South Asia Minor, of very different extent at different periods, but generally covering much of what is now south-central Turkey. ... Events March 25 - Leo III usurps the throne of Byzantium August 15 - Muslama begins the Second Arab siege of Constantinople. ... Events June 18 - Constantine V succeeds Leo III as emperor of the Byzantine Empire. ...


Although falsely depicted as effete by the historian Edward Gibbon in the 18th century, the Byzantine Empire was the closest thing to a military superpower in the early Middle Ages, thanks to its heavy cavalry (the cataphracts), its subsidization (albeit inconsistently) of a well-to-do free peasant class as the basis for cavalry recruitment, its extraordinary defense in depth (the thematic system), its use of subsidies to play its enemies against one another, its intelligence gathering prowess, its development of a system of logistics based on mule trains, its navy (often tragically underfunded), and its rational military doctrines (not dissimilar to those of Sun Tzu) that emphasized stealth, surprise, swift maneuver and the marshalling of overwhelming force at the time and place of the Byzantine commander's choosing. Edward Gibbon. ... (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... A superpower is a state with the ability to influence events or project power on a global scale. ... Sarmatian Cataphract The cataphract was a type of heavy cavalryman used primarily in eastern and southeastern Europe, in Anatolia and Iran from late antiquity up through the High Middle Ages. ... Sun Tzu (孫子 also commonly written in pinyin: Sūn Zǐ) was the author of The Art of War, an influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy (for the most part not dealing directly with tactics). ...


After the siege of 717 in which the Arabs suffered horrific casualties, the Caliphate was never a serious threat to the Byzantine heartland. It would take a different civilization, that of the Seljuk Turks, to finally drive the imperial forces out of eastern and central Anatolia. An Anglicized/Latinized version of the Arabic word خليفة or Khalīfah, Caliph (  listen?) is the term or title for the Islamic leader of the Ummah, or community of Islam. ... The Seljuk Turks (Turkish: Selçuk; Arabic: سلجوق Saljūq, السلاجقة al-Salājiqa; Persian: سلجوقيان Saljūqiyān; also Seldjuk, Seldjuq, Seljuq) were a major branch of the Oghuz Turks and a dynasty that occupied parts of Central Asia and the Middle East from the 11th to 14th centuries. ...


The 8th century was dominated by the controversy over iconoclasm. Icons were banned by Emperor Leo III, leading to revolts by iconophiles within the empire. Thanks to the efforts of Empress Irene, the Second Council of Nicaea met in 787 and affirmed that icons could be venerated but not worshipped. Irene also attempted a marriage alliance with Charlemagne, which would have united the two empires, but these plans came to nothing. The iconoclast controversy returned in the early 9th century, but was resolved once more in 843. These controversies did not help the disintegrating relations with the Roman Catholic Church and the Holy Roman Empire, which were both beginning to gain more power of their own. (7th century — 8th century — 9th century — other centuries) Events The Iberian peninsula is taken by Arab and Berber Muslims, thus ending the Visigothic rule, and starting almost 8 centuries of Muslim presence there. ... Literally, iconoclasm is the destruction of religious icons and other sacred images or monuments, usually for religious or political motives. ... The Savior Not Made By Hands (1410s, by Andrei Rublev) An icon (from Greek εικων, eikon, image) is an artistic visual representation or symbol of anything considered holy and divine, such as God, saints or deities. ... Leo III (disambiguation). ... Saint Irene (c. ... The Second Council of Nicaea was the seventh ecumenical council of Christianity; it met in 787 CE in Nicaea (site of the First Council of Nicaea) to restore the honoring of icons (or, holy images), which had been suppressed by imperial edict inside the Byzantine Empire during the reign of... This article is about the year 787. ... A Frankish king, like Charlemagne, (center) depicted in the Sacramentary of Charles the Bald (about 870) Charlemagne (c. ... ( 8th century - 9th century - 10th century - other centuries) Events Beowulf might have been written down in this century, though it could also have been in the 8th century Reign of Charlemagne, and concurrent (and controversially labeled) Carolingian Renaissance in western Europe Viking attacks on Europe begin Oseberg ship burial The... Events Treaty of Verdun divides the Carolingian empire between the 3 sons of Louis the Pious. ... This article considers Catholicism in the broadest ecclesiastical sense. ... The crown of the Holy Roman Empire (2nd half of the 10th century), now held in the Vienna Schatzkammer. ...


Golden era

Painting of Basil II, from an 11th century manuscript.

The empire reached its height under the Macedonian emperors of the late 9th, 10th and early 11th centuries. During these years the Empire held out against pressure from the Roman church to remove Patriarch Photios, and gained control over the Adriatic Sea, parts of Italy, and much of the land held by the Bulgarians. The Bulgarians were completely defeated by Basil II in 1014. The Empire also gained a new ally (yet sometimes also an enemy) in the new Ruthenian state in Kiev, from which the empire received an important mercenary force, the Varangian Guard. Manuscript painting of Basil II, obtained from http://www. ... Manuscript painting of Basil II, obtained from http://www. ... (10th century - 11th century - 12th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 11th century was that century which lasted from 1001 to 1100. ... ( 8th century - 9th century - 10th century - other centuries) Events Beowulf might have been written down in this century, though it could also have been in the 8th century Reign of Charlemagne, and concurrent (and controversially labeled) Carolingian Renaissance in western Europe Viking attacks on Europe begin Oseberg ship burial The... ( 9th century - 10th century - 11th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 10th century was that century which lasted from 901 to 1000. ... (10th century - 11th century - 12th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 11th century was that century which lasted from 1001 to 1100. ... Photius (b. ... The Adriatic Sea Source: NASA The Adriatic Sea is an arm of the Mediterranean Sea separating the Apennine peninsula (Italy) from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges. ... Painting of Basil II, from an 11th century manuscript. ... Events February 14 - Germany July 29 - Battle of Kleidion: Basil II inflicts not only a decisive defeat on the Bulgarian army, but his subsequent savage treatment of 15,000 prisoners reportedly causes Tsar Samuil of Bulgaria to die of shock, and earns Basil II the title Voulgaroktonos (Bulgar-slayer). ... Ruthenia is a name applied to parts of Eastern Europe which were populated by Eastern Slavic peoples, as well as to various states that existed in this territory in the past. ... Kiev (Київ, Kyiv, in Ukrainian; Киев, Kiev, in Russian) is the capital and largest city of Ukraine, located in the north central part of the country on the Dnieper river. ... The Varangians or Variags were Vikings who travelled eastwards from Sweden and Norway. ...


In 1054 relations between Greek-speaking Eastern and Latin-speaking Western traditions within the Christian Church reached a terminal crisis. There was never a formal declaration of institutional separation, and the so-called Great Schism actually was the culmination of centuries of gradual separation. From this split, the modern (Roman) Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches arose. The East-West Schism, known also as the Great Schism (though this latter term sometimes refers to the later Western Schism), was the event that divided Christianity into Western Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. ...


Like Rome before it, though, Byzantium soon fell into a period of difficulties, caused to a large extent by the growth of the landed aristocracy, which undermined the theme system. Facing its old enemies, the Holy Roman Empire and the Abbasid caliphate, it might have recovered, but around the same time new invaders appeared on the scene who had little reason to respect its reputation. The Normans finally completed the Byzantine expulsion from Italy in 1071, and the Seljuk Turks, who were mainly interested in defeating Egypt under the Fatimids, still made moves into Asia Minor, the main recruiting ground for the Byzantine armies. With the defeat at Manzikert of emperor Romanus IV in 1071 by Alp Arslan, sultan of the Seljuk Turks, most of that province was lost. The final split between the Roman and Orthodox churches occurred at this time as well, with their mutual excommunication in 1054. Abbasid provinces during the caliphate of Harun al-Rashid Abbasid was the dynastic name generally given to the caliphs of Baghdad, the second of the two great Sunni dynasties of the Muslim empire, that overthrew the Umayyid caliphs. ... The Normans (adapted from the name Northmen or Norsemen) were Scandinavian invaders (especially Danish Vikings) who began to occupy the northern area of France now known as Normandy in the latter half of the 9th century. ... The Seljuk Turks (Turkish: Selçuk; Arabic: سلجوق Saljūq, السلاجقة al-Salājiqa; Persian: سلجوقيان Saljūqiyān; also Seldjuk, Seldjuq, Seljuq) were a major branch of the Oghuz Turks and a dynasty that occupied parts of Central Asia and the Middle East from the 11th to 14th centuries. ... The Fatimid Empire or Fatimid Caliphate ruled North Africa from A.D. 909 to 1171. ... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to the Asian portion of Turkey. ... Manzikert (in Turkish Malazgirt) is a town in Muş in eastern Turkey, with a population of 23 697 (year 2000). ... Romanus IV (Diogenes), Byzantine emperor from 1068 to 1071, was a member of a distinguished Cappadocian family, and had risen to distinction in the army, until he was convicted of treason against the sons of Constantine X. While waiting for his execution he was summoned into the presence of the... Events Byzantine Empire loses Battle of Manzikert to Turkish army under Alp Arslan. ... Muhammed ben Daud (1029-December 15, 1072), the second sultan of the dynasty of Seljuk Turks, in Persia, and great-grandson of Seljuk, the founder of the dynasty. ... Events Cardinal Humbertus, a representative of Pope Leo IX, and Michael Cerularius, Patriarch of Constantinople, decree each others excommunication. ...


End of empire

Sections of the Theodosian walls of Constantinople as they appear today in suburban Istanbul

A partial recovery was made possible after Manzikert by the rise to power of the Comnenian dynasty. The first emperor of this line, Alexius Comnenus, whose life and policies would be described by his daughter Anna in The Alexeid, began to reestablish the army on the basis of feudal grants (próniai) and made significant advances against the Seljuk Turks. His plea for western aid against the Seljuk advance brought about the First Crusade, which helped him reclaim Nicaea but soon distanced itself from imperial aid. Later crusades grew increasingly antagonistic. Although Alexius' grandson Manuel I Comnenus was a friend of the Crusaders, neither side could forget that the other had excommunicated them, and the Byzantines were very suspicious of the intentions of the Roman Catholic Crusaders who continually passed through their territory. Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 296 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 296 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Byzantine emperor Alexius I Comnenus Alexius I (1048–August 15, 1118), Byzantine emperor (1081–1118), was the third son of John Comnenus, nephew of Isaac I Comnenus (emperor 1057–1059). ... Pronoia (plural pronoiai, Greek for provisions) refers to a system of land grants in the Byzantine Empire. ... The First Crusade was launched in 1095 by Pope Urban II to regain control of the sacred city of Jerusalem and the Christian Holy Land from Muslims. ... Nicaea is also the ancient name of the French city Nice. ... Fresco of Manuel I Manuel I Comnenus Megas (November 28, 1118? - September 24, 1180) was Byzantine Emperor from 1143 to 1180. ...

Map of the Byzantine Empire around year 1180.

The Germans of the Holy Roman Empire and the Normans of Sicily and Italy continued to attack the empire in the 11th and 12th centuries. The Italian city states, who had been granted trading rights in Constantinople by Alexius, became the targets of anti-Western sentiments as the most visible example of Western "Franks" or "Latins." The Venetians were especially disliked, even though their ships were the basis of the Byzantine navy. To add to the empire's concerns, the Seljuks remained a threat, defeating Manuel at Myriokephalon in 1176. Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Venice is known for its waterways and gondolas Gondola. ... The Battle of Myriokephalon, also known as Myriocephalum, was a battle between the Byzantine Empire and the Seljuk Turks in Phrygia on September 17, 1176. ... Events May 22 - Murder attempt by the Hashshashin on Saladin near Aleppo Raynald of Chatillon released from prison in Aleppo May 29 - Frederick Barbarossa is defeated in the Battle of Legnano by the Lombard League leading to the pactum Anagninum (the Agreement of Anagni) September 17 - Seljuk Turks defeat Manuel...


Frederick Barbarossa attempted to conquer the empire during the Third Crusade, but it was the Fourth Crusade that had the most devastating effect on the empire. Although the intent of the crusade was to conquer Egypt, the Venetians took control of the expedition, and under their influence the crusade captured Constantinople in 1204. As a result a short-lived feudal kingdom was founded (the Latin Empire), and Byzantine power was permanently weakened. At this time the Serbian Kingdom under the Nemanjic dynasty grew stronger with the collapse of Byzantium, forming a Serbian Empire in 1346. Frederick in a 13th century Chronicle Frederick I Hohenstaufen (1122 – June 10, 1190), also known as Frederick Barbarossa (Frederick Redbeard) was elected king of Germany on March 4, 1152 and was crowned Holy Roman Emperor on June 18, 1155. ... The Third Crusade began in 1189 as an attempt to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin. ... The Fourth Crusade (1202-1204), originally designed to conquer Jerusalem by taking Egypt first, instead, in 1204, conquered the Orthodox Christian city of Constantinople, capital of the Byzantine Empire. ... Events February - Byzantine emperor Alexius IV is overthrown in a revolution, and Alexius V is proclaimed emperor. ... The Latin Empire, Empire of Nicaea, Empire of Trebizond and the Despotate of Epirus. ... The Medieval Serbian Kingdom 1167 - 1196: Stefan Nemanja (Grand Zupan) 1331 - 1355: Stefan Uros IV Dusan (King to 1346, then Tsar) 1196 - 1227: Stefan First-Crowned (Grand Zupan to 1217, then crowned King) 1355 - 1371: Stefan Uros V (Tsar Uros) 1227 - 1234: Stefan Radoslav 1371 - 1389: Lazar (Prince) 1234 - 1243... Nemanjić (Serbian Немањић; also Nemanjid) was a medieval Serb ruling dynasty. ... Serbia was formerly a principality (1817-1882), kingdom (1882-1918) and part of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (1918-1945, until 1929 the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes). ...

The Byzantine Empire in 1265 (William R. Shepherd, Historical Atlas, 1911)
The Latin Empire, Empire of Nicaea, Empire of Trebizond and the Despotate of Epirus. The borders are very uncertain.

Three Byzantine successor states were left - the Empire of Nicaea, the Empire of Trebizond, and the Despotate of Epirus. The first, controlled by the Palaeologan dynasty, managed to reclaim Constantinople in 1261 and defeat Epirus, reviving the empire but giving too much attention to Europe when the Asian provinces were the primary concern. For a while the empire survived simply because the Muslims were too divided to attack, but eventually the Ottomans overran all but a handful of port cities. Download high resolution version (1144x900, 272 KB)Map, The Byzantine Empire, 1265. ... Download high resolution version (1144x900, 272 KB)Map, The Byzantine Empire, 1265. ... Events January 20 - In Westminster, the first English parliament conducts its first meeting. ... A database query syntax error has occurred. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... The Empire of Nicaea was the largest of the states founded by refugees from the Byzantine Empire after Constantinople was conquered during the Fourth Crusade. ... Introduction The Empire of Trebizond and other states carved from the Byzantine Empire, as they were in 1265 (William R. Shepherd, Historical Atlas, 1911) The Empire of Trebizond was a successor state of the Byzantine Empire founded in 1204 immediately before the fall of Constantinople. ... The Despotate of Epirus was one of the successor states of the Byzantine Empire, founded in the aftermath of the Fourth Crusade in 1204. ... The Palaeologus family was the last dynasty ruling the Byzantine Empire. ... Events July 25 - Constantinople re-captured by Nicaean forces under the command of Michael VIII Palaeologus, Byzantine Empire re-formed August 29 - Urban IV becomes Pope, the last man to do so without being a Cardinal first Bela IV of Hungary repels Tatar invasion Charles of Anjou given rule of... A Muslim is a believer in or follower of Islam. ... The Ottoman Empire at the height of its power Imperial motto El Muzaffer Daima The Ever Victorious (as written in tugra) Official language Ottoman Turkish Capital İstanbul (Constantinople/Asitane/Konstantiniyye ) Sovereigns Sultans of the Osmanli Dynasty Population ca 40 million Area 6. ...


The empire appealed to the west for help, but they would only consider sending aid in return for reuniting the churches. Church unity was considered, and occasionally accomplished by law, but the Orthodox citizens would not accept Roman Catholicism. Some western mercenaries arrived to help, but many preferred to let the empire die, and did nothing as the Ottomans picked apart the remaining territories.

The Byzantine Empire around year 1400.

Constantinople was initially not considered worth the effort of conquest, but with the advent of cannons, the walls, which had been impenetrable except by the Crusaders for over 1000 years, no longer offered adequate protection from the Ottomans. The Fall of Constantinople finally came after a two-month siege by Mehmed II on May 29, 1453. Mehmed II also conquered Mistra in 1460 and Trebizond in 1461. Mehmed styled himself the proper successor to the Eastern Roman Emperors and by the end of the century the Ottoman Empire had established its firm rule over Asia Minor and most of the Balkan peninsula. Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... The 1453 Siege of Constantinople (painted 1499) The Fall of Constantinople was the conquest of that Greek city by the Ottoman Empire under the command of Sultan Mehmed II, on Tuesday, May 29, 1453. ... Mehmed II Mehmed II, also known as Muhammed II (March 30, 1432 – May 3, 1481; nicknamed el-Fatih, the Conqueror) was the sultan of the Ottoman Empire for a short time from 1444 to 1446, and later from 1451 to 1481. ... May 29 is the 149th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (150th in leap years). ... Events May 29 - Fall of Constantinople to Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II the Conqueror, marking the end of the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire). ... For a village in the prefecture of Ioannina, see Ioannina The Vale of Laconia seen from the battlements of Mystras Mystras (also Mistra, Mystra and Mistras Greek: Μύστρας ) was a fortified town in Morea (the Peloponnesus), on Mt. ... Events The first Portuguese navigators reach the coast of modern Sierra Leone. ... Trabzon, formerly known as Trebizond, is a city on the Black Sea coast of north-eastern Turkey. ... Events February 2 - Battle of Mortimers Cross - Yorkist troops led by Edward, Duke of York defeat Lancastrians under Owen Tudor and his son Jasper Tudor, Earl of Pembroke in Wales. ... The Ottoman Empire at the height of its power Imperial motto El Muzaffer Daima The Ever Victorious (as written in tugra) Official language Ottoman Turkish Capital İstanbul (Constantinople/Asitane/Konstantiniyye ) Sovereigns Sultans of the Osmanli Dynasty Population ca 40 million Area 6. ... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to the Asian portion of Turkey. ... The Balkans is the historic and geographic name used to describe southeastern Europe (see the Definitions and boundaries section below). ...


Meanwhile, the role of the Emperor as patron of Eastern Orthodoxy had started being claimed by the Grand Dukes of Muscovy starting with Ivan III. His grandson Ivan IV would become the first Tsar of Russia. Their successors supported the idea that Moscow was the proper heir to Rome and Constantinople, a Third Rome. Both the Ottoman and the Russian Empires would continue to consider themselves proper heirs to the Byzantines until their own demises early in the 20th century. ... The title of Grand Duke (Latin, Magnus Dux; German, Großherzog, Russian, Великий князь) used in Slavic, Baltic, and Germanic countries, is ranked in honour below King but higher than a sovereign Duke (Herzog) or Prince (Fürst). ... This article is about Muscovite Russia. ... Albus rex Ivan III Ivan III Vasilevich (Иван III Васильевич) (January 22, 1440 - October 27, 1505), also known as Ivan the Great, was a grand duke of Muscovy who first adopted a more pretentious title of the grand duke of all the Russias. Sometimes referred to as the gatherer of... Ivan IV (August 25, 1530–March 18, 1584) was the first ruler of Russia to assume the title of tsar. ... Tsar ( Bulgarian цар, Russian царь,  listen?; often spelled Czar or Tzar and sometimes Csar or Zar in English), was the title used for the autocratic rulers of the First and Second Bulgarian Empires since 913, in Serbia in the middle of the 14th century, and in Russia from 1547 to... Saint Basils Cathedral Moscow  listen? ( Russian/Cyrillic: Москва́, pronunciation: Moskva), capital of Russia, located on the river Moskva, and encompassing 1097. ... Location within Italy The Roman Colosseum Rome (Italian and Latin: Roma) is the capital city of Italy and of its Latium region. ... Map of Constantinople. ... New Rome is a term that can be applied to a city or a country. ... Imperial Russia is the term used to cover the period of Russian history from the expansion of Russia under Peter the Great, through the expansion of the Russian Empire from the Baltic to the Pacific Ocean, to the deposal of Nicholas II of Russia, the last tsar, at the start... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999 in the...


In addition Byzantium played an important role in the transmission of classical knowledge to the Islamic world and to Renaissance Italy. The influence of its theologians on medieval Western thought (and especially on Thomas Aquinas) was profound, and their removal from the "canon" of Western thought in subsequent centuries has only served to impoverish the canon. The Islamic world is the world-wide community of all believers in Islam, who are known as Muslims, and who number approximately one-and-a-half billion people. ... By Region: Italian Renaissance Northern Renaissance -French Renaissance -German Renaissance -English Renaissance The Italian Renaissance was the opening phase of the Renaissance, a period of great cultural change and achievement from the fourteenth to the sixteenth century following the Middle Ages. ... Saint Thomas Aquinas (1225 – March 7, 1274) was an Italian Catholic philosopher and theologian in the scholastic tradition. ...


Byzantium's influence on Western art and architecture is so well-known as to scarcely need mentioning. Its most lasting effect, though, lies in its spreading of Orthodoxy to surrounding peoples (the so-called "Byzantine commonwealth," a term coined by 20th century historians). Early Byzantine missionary work spread Orthodox Christianity to various Slavic peoples, and it is still predominant among the Russians and many other Slavic peoples as well as among the Greeks. Less well known is the influence of the Byzantine style of religion on the millions of Christians in Ethiopia, the Egyptian Coptic Christians, and the Christians of Georgia and Armenia. The start and end dates of the Empire's independence, 395 to 1453, are one of the traditional dates for the period of the Middle Ages. It was 1177 years from the original split of the Roman Empire under Diocletian in 284 until the fall of Trebizond in 1461; whatever the measurement, the Empire certainly lasted for over a millennium. Eastern Orthodoxy (also called Greek Orthodoxy and Russian Orthodoxy) is a Christian tradition which represents the majority of Eastern Christianity. ... The Slavic peoples are the most numerous ethnic and linguistic body of peoples in Europe. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ...


"Byzantine"

The Byzantine Empire acquired a negative reputation among historians of the 18th and 19th century not only for the complexity of the organization of its ministries and the elaborateness of its court ceremonies (from this came the term still in modern use, "Byzantine", often used pejoratively to describe any work, law, or organization that is excessively complex and/or difficult to understand; see also Baroque), but also for their alleged lack of courage and military ability. This prejudice originated, according to the medievalist Steven Runciman, from the impressions of medieval Europe with this mighty power. "Ever since our rough crusading forefathers first saw Constantinople and met, to their contemptuous disgust, a society where everyone read and wrote, ate food with forks and preferred diplomacy to war, it has been fashionable to pass the Byzantines by with scorn and to use their name as synonymous with decadence."2 However, many of the emperors of the Middle and Late Empire were full-time military commanders, and several were men of letters as well. They may have had little patience with elaborate court ceremonies. Adoration, by Peter Paul Rubens: dynamic figures spiral down around a void: draperies blow: a whirl of movement lit in a shaft of light, rendered in a free bravura handling of paint The Baroque was a style in art that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce... Sir James Cochran Stevenson Runciman (7 July 1903 - 1 November 2000) was a British historian known for his work on the Middle Ages. ...


By the 18th century refinement and polite manners were no longer considered effeminate, so writers like Gibbon and Montesquieu searched after a new justification for their prejudice against this civilization. Gibbon found it in the scholarly works of the emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogenitos, and seized upon the bookish style of this invalid and bookish ruler, who was forced to pass most of his reign as a figurehead. Exploiting this source to confirm his own preconceptions 3, Gibbon thus gave new life to an oversimplified view of a "decadent" Byzantium, which lives in the public mind by the poetry of William Butler Yeats. Constantine VII Porphyrogenitos (the Purple-born) ( 905 – November 9, 959) was the son of Byzantine emperor Leo VI and nephew of Alexander III. He earned his nickname as the legitimate (or more accurately legitimized) son of Leo, as opposed to the others who claimed the throne during his lifetime. ... A 1907 engraving of Yeats. ...


Likewise, the term "Byzantine" also suggests a penchant for intrigue, plots and assassinations. In fact, the Empire was among the more stable political entities of its own or any other time. Its famous intrigue and turmoil was far less than that of Western Europe's unruly feudal states, and occurred most often during relatively brief interregnums between strong (and sometimes brilliantly led) dynasties. The very stability of the imperial state, however, probably undermined the creative impulses and innovativeness that characterized the early centuries of the remarkable Byzantine civilization, thus contributing to its eventual downfall.


See also

The Western Roman Empire is the name given to the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian. ... This is a list of people, places, things, and concepts related to or originating from the Byzantine Empire. ... Roman Empire between AD 60 and 400 with major cities. ... Roman Emperor is the title historians use to refer to the ruler of the Roman Empire. ... This is a list of Byzantine Emperors. ... The History of Greece extends back to the arrival of the Greeks in Europe some time before 1500 BC, even though there has only been an independent state called Greece since 1821. ... Roman Greece The Greek peninsula became a Roman protectorate in 146 BC, and the Aegean islands were added to this territory in 133. ... Current political map of the Balkans. ... This article discusses the history of the continent of Europe. ... This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East. ... The Latin Empire, Empire of Nicaea, Empire of Trebizond and the Despotate of Epirus. ... The Empire of Nicaea was the largest of the states founded by refugees from the Byzantine Empire after Constantinople was conquered during the Fourth Crusade. ... Introduction The Empire of Trebizond and other states carved from the Byzantine Empire, as they were in 1265 (William R. Shepherd, Historical Atlas, 1911) The Empire of Trebizond was a successor state of the Byzantine Empire founded in 1204 immediately before the fall of Constantinople. ... The Despotate of Epirus was one of the successor states of the Byzantine Empire, founded in the aftermath of the Fourth Crusade in 1204. ... Anastasius 40 nummi and 5 nummi Byzantine currency, money used in the Eastern Roman Empire after the fall of the West, consisted of mainly two types of coins: the gold solidus and a variety of clearly valued bronze coins. ... The most famous of the surviving Byzantine mosaics of the Church of the Holy Wisdom (Hagia Sofia) in Istanbul (formerly Constantinople) - the image of Christ on the walls of the upper southern gallery. ... The 11th-century monastery of Hosios Lukas in Greece is representative of the Byzantine art during the rule of Macedonian dynasty. ... The Byzantine Empire had a complex system of aristocracy and bureaucracy. ... Byzantine emperor Alexius I Comnenus The Comnenus family was an important family in the history of the Byzantine Empire. ... The Palaeologus family was the last dynasty ruling the Byzantine Empire. ... The following list of dates links only to fixed feasts of the Orthodox Church ( New Style}. All dates having to do with Pascha ( Easter) - beginning of Great Lent, the Ascension, Pentecost, etc. ...

External links

Bibliography

  • G. Ostrogorsky. "History of the Byzantine State", 2nd edition, New Brunswick (NJ) 1969.
  • Warren Treadgold. "A History of the Byzantine State and Society", Stanford, 1997.
  • Helene Ahrweiler, "Studies on the Internal Diaspora of the Byzantine Empire", Harvard University Press, 1998.

References

  1. Helene Ahrweiler, "Les Europeens", pp.150, Herman (Paris), 2000.
  2. Steven Runciman, The Emperor Romanus Lecapenus and his Reign, p.9. University Press (Cambridge), 1990.
  3. Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, chapter 53.

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CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: The Byzantine Empire (14304 words)
Various districts of the empire strove to promote the export of industrial articles, Syria and Egypt, in particular, upholding their ancient positions as industrial sections of importance, their activity expressing itself chiefly in weaving and dyeing and the manufacture of metals and glass.
Byzantine Empire is strikingly exhibited in the depreciation of currency during the reigns of the Comneni.
Its administration was seriously influenced by the polities of the empire the boundaries of the empire bounded the Church's aspirations and activities.
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