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 What were the main characteristics of the Byzantine Empire?

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Presentation on theme: " What were the main characteristics of the Byzantine Empire?"— Presentation transcript:


2  What were the main characteristics of the Byzantine Empire?

3  After the fall of Rome, the Eastern Roman Empire continued as the Byzantine Empire with Constantinople as its center.  It lasted for almost 1,000 years.  Constantinople was located along land routes that connected Europe and Asia and on the Bosporus, a waterway connecting the Black and Mediterranean Seas  It was surrounded on three sides by water and had thick city walls, making it almost invulnerable to attack


5  The Byzantines saw themselves as simply continuing the Roman Empire  Byzantine emperors were all-powerful and continued an imperial system over a diverse population  The official language of government was Latin, but most people spoke Greek (eventually Latin was replaced by Greek in the government)

6 Constantinople Rome Carthage Arabia Persian Empire Kingdom of The Franks Kingdom of The Visigoths AFRICA

7  Religion – The Eastern Orthodox Church  Separate from the Catholic Church  Did not recognize the Pope as the head of their church  Had their own Patriarch (leader)  Some other issues were the use of relics vs. icons, view on the trinity and the shape of the cross displayed in churches

8  Developed a vibrant culture  Built magnificent churches like the Hagia Sophia with its giant dome and tall spires  Taught ancient Greek texts  Artists used precious materials (gold, silver, ivory) to display classical images  Especially known for their colorful icons and mosaics

9  Reconquered much of the old Roman Empire  Greatest achievement was the Code of Justinian  Collected all of the existing Roman laws and organized them into a single code  Listed all the laws and opinions on each subject  Had special laws relating to religion and required all persons in the empire to belong to the Eastern Orthodox Faith  Added new laws that pertained to women’s rights

10 Complete the chart about the reasons for the survival of the Byzantine Empire. Homework: Read the document from the Code of Justinian, then anwer the questions that follow.

11  Continuously battled the Slavs and Avars to the north, Persians to the east and spread of Islam in the south.  In the 600s, Muslims took most of the Middle East  In the 1100s, The Seljuk Turks took most of Asia Minor  European crusaders attacked Constantinople in 1204 and Italian cities competed for Byzantine trade  By the 1440s, the empire was reduced to a small area around Constantinople which was finally conquered by the Ottomans in 1453

12  Emerged in the 9 th century when Vikings organized Slavs into a kingdom centered in Kiev (other Russian cities developed in the north – Moscow & Novgorod)  Early Russian cities traded with the Byzantines  Byzantine influence on Russian culture  Orthodox Christianity (converted Slavs and Bulgars)  Cyrillic alphabet  Byzantine crafts and other products

13  What legal principle do all three sections share? ___________________________________  ____________________________________________________________________________  Why was the Code of Justinian such an important legal advance? _____________________  ____________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________ THE CODE OF JUSTINIAN: ON BRINGING AN ACTION TO COURT You must [determine] the proof necessary to establish the fact that you are entitled to the money which you [claim] you have deposited. Emperor Antonius, 156 A.D. He before whom proceedings are brought shall order public documents, both civil and criminal, to be produced, for the purpose of being examined, in order to [judge] the truth. Emperor Severus, 193 A.D. Persons who wish to bring an accusation must have evidence, for the law does not permit a party to inspect the documents of the other side. Therefore, if thee plaintiff does not prove his allegations, the defendant shall be discharged, even if he furnishes no evidence. Emperor Antoninus, 223 A.D.

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