39 Facts About Byzantine


Byzantine Empire, referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople.

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Byzantine's convening of both the Synod of Arles and the First Council of Nicaea indicated his interest in the unity of the Church and showcased his claim to be its head.

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Byzantine introduced a new coinage system of the copper follis, the coin used in most everyday transactions.

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Byzantine reformed the tax system and permanently abolished the chrysargyron tax.

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The massive cultural and institutional restructuring of the empire consequent on the loss of territory in the 7th century has been said to have caused a decisive break in east Mediterranean Romanness, and that the Byzantine state is subsequently best understood as another successor state rather than a real continuation of the Roman Empire.

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In 680, Byzantine forces sent to disperse these new settlements were defeated.

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Byzantine was driven from power in 695 and took shelter first with the Khazars and then with the Bulgarians.

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Rus'–Byzantine relations became closer following the marriage of Anna Porphyrogeneta to Vladimir the Great in 988, and the subsequent Christianisation of the Rus'.

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Byzantine Empire fell into a period of difficulties, caused to a large extent by the undermining of the theme system and the neglect of the military.

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Incompetent efforts to revive the Byzantine economy resulted in severe inflation and a debased gold currency.

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Byzantine required its leaders to swear to restore to the empire any towns or territories they might reconquer from the Turks on their way to the Holy Land.

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Byzantine thwarted Hungarian and Serbian threats during the 1120s, and in 1130 he allied himself with German Emperor Lothair III against Norman King Roger II of Sicily.

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Byzantine defeated the Danishmend Emirate of Melitene and reconquered all of Cilicia, while forcing Raymond of Poitiers, Prince of Antioch, to recognise Byzantine suzerainty.

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Byzantine eliminated Alexios II and took his 12-year-old wife Agnes of France for himself.

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Byzantine was finally overthrown when Isaac II Angelos, surviving an imperial assassination attempt, seized power with the aid of the people and had Andronikos killed.

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Byzantine emperors appealed to the West for help, but the pope would only consider sending aid in return for a reunion of the Eastern Orthodox Church with the See of Rome.

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Byzantine lived in the Morea until its fall in 1460, then escaped to Rome where he lived under the protection of the Papal States for the remainder of his life.

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Byzantine eventually served twice as grand vizier under Mehmed's son, Bayezid II.

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Byzantine had married Andreas' sister, Sophia Palaiologina, whose grandson, Ivan IV, would become the first tsar of Russia .

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Byzantine diplomacy managed to draw its neighbours into a network of international and inter-state relations.

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Byzantine science played an important and crucial role in the transmission of classical knowledge to the Islamic world and to Renaissance Italy.

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Therefore, Byzantine science was in every period closely connected with ancient philosophy, and metaphysics.

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Byzantine Empire was a theocracy, said to be ruled by God working through the emperor.

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Constitution of the Byzantine Empire was based on the conviction that it was the earthly copy of the Kingdom of Heaven.

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The Byzantine state inherited from pagan times the administrative and financial routine of administering religious affairs, and this routine was applied to the Christian Church.

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Byzantine art was highly prestigious and sought-after in Western Europe, where it maintained a continuous influence on medieval art until near the end of the period.

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Byzantine architecture is known for the use of domes, and pendentive architecture was invented in the Byzantine Empire.

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The building material used by Byzantine architects was no longer marble, which was very appreciated by the Ancient Greeks.

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Good examples of mosaics from the proto-Byzantine era are in Hagios Demetrios in Thessaloniki, the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo and the Basilica of San Vitale, both in Ravenna, and Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.

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Greco-Roman temples and Byzantine churches differ substantially in terms of their exterior and interior aspect.

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Byzantine literature is often classified in five groups: historians and annalists; encyclopaedists and essayists; writers of secular poetry ; ecclesiastical and theological literature; and popular poetry.

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Greek and foreign historians agree that the ecclesiastical tones and in general the whole system of Byzantine music is closely related to the ancient Greek system.

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The first of these, the early bowed stringed instrument known as the Byzantine lyra, came to be called the lira da braccio, in Venice, where it is considered by many to have been the predecessor of the contemporary violin, which later flourished there.

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Byzantine culture was initially the same as Late Greco-Roman, but over the following millennium of the empire's existence it slowly changed into something more similar to modern Balkan and Anatolian culture.

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Byzantine nobles were devoted to horsemanship, particularly tzykanion, now known as polo.

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Eastern Roman and later Byzantine women retained the Roman woman's right to inherit, own and manage their property and signs contracts, rights which were far superior to the rights of married women in Medieval Catholic Western Europe, as these rights included both married women as well as unmarried women and widows.

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Byzantine economy was among the most advanced in Europe and the Mediterranean for many centuries.

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The Palaiologoi tried to revive the economy, but the late Byzantine state did not gain full control of either the foreign or domestic economic forces.

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From a different perspective, since the 7th century, the evolution and constant reshaping of the Byzantine state were directly related to the respective progress of Islam.

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