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Welcome to the Byzantine Empire

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Presentation on theme: "Welcome to the Byzantine Empire"— Presentation transcript:

1 Welcome to the Byzantine Empire
After the Western Roman Empire fell to German barbarian invasions in the 5th century, the Eastern Roman Empire, with its capital at Constantinople, repelled the invasions and went on to survive for 1000 more years, preserving and spreading the culture of ancient Greeks and Romans Welcome to the Byzantine Empire

2 Located on a peninsula that overlooked the Bosporus Strait
Controlled movement between Med. & Black Seas Key trade center between East & West

3 The Golden Horn Natural protection from invaders: water on 3 sides
Triple Walls fortified open side

4 Constantinople: A Strategic City Where Europe & Asia Meet

5 Constantine and the move east
- western Roman Empire crumbled in 5th century due to invading Germanic tribes from the north - the threat to the Roman Empire was already apparent in the 4th century as Emperor Constantine rebuilt they city of Byzantium (a port city) on the Bosporus straight - 2 reasons as to why he built here: 1. he could respond to the danger of the Germanic tribes 2. he could be close to his rich eastern provinces Fill in noteS

6 - city named Constantinople in his honor and in 330 it was the capital of the Byzantine Empire, the New Rome - center of power for the Empire shifted east as a result and the eastern provinces began to develop independently of the declining west - communication difficulties officially divided the Empire in 395 Fill in noteS

7 - even though a split had taken place, rulers in the east continued to think of themselves as Roman emperors -cultural blend of people from Africa, Europe, Middle East -mainly Greeks occupied Byzantium Fill in noteS

8 Justinian and Theodora
Justinian was a 6th century Byzantine Emperor considered one if its greatest rulers & his wife Theodora was very influential in his reign Theodora was concerned with improving the social standing of women; urged Justinian to give women more rights Theodora urged Justinian not to flee when taxpayers revolted (Nika Rebellion) Justinian stayed and his army crushed the rebels

9 Theodora & Her Attendants

10 Justinian and His Attendants

11 Justinian Fill in noteS
- in 527 he succeeded the throne from his uncle - described as a serious, even-tempered ruler who worked from dawn til dusk by Procopius, his court historian - Justinian made good on his claim to be the head of the whole Roman Empire, east and west - sent his best general Belisarius to take North Africa from the Vandals, Rome from the Ostrogoths, parts of Spain and nearly all of Italy - by this time Justinian ruled almost all the territory that Rome had ever ruled Fill in noteS

12 Belasarius Expands Empire
Belasarius was a peasant with little military experience He was a friend of Theodora’s. Led the troops that crushed Nika Rebellion Appointed general of Byzantine armies which fought a series of wars against the Vandals, Ostrogoths & Visigoths Byzantines conquered these Germanic groups and extended their rule in the west

13 Power of the Emperors: Fill in noteS
- Byzantine emperors ruled with absolute power like old Caesars - they headed the state and the Church (appointed and dismissed bishops at will) - politics were more brutal (of 88 Byzantine emperors, 29 died violently and 13 abandoned throne to live in monasteries) Fill in noteS

14 Building the New Rome: Fill in noteS
- the Byzantine Empire is different that western ones, difficulty of communications gave Byzantine Empire its own character - citizens thought they shared Roman traditions, but in actuality few spoke Latin (most spoke Greek and belonged to eastern branch of Christian church) Fill in noteS

15 - such a complex society needed some regulation, so Justinian set up a legal panel of ten experts to comb through 400 yrs of Roman law and legal opinions - goal of the panel was to create a single, uniform code for Justinian's New Rome, as many of the previous laws had become outdated or contradicted themselves -result was a body of civil laws known as Justinian Code Fill in noteS

16 Code consisted of 4 works:
1. The Code --> contained nearly 5,000 Roman laws, which experts still considered useful for the Byzantine Empire 2. The Digest --> quoted and summarized the opinions of Rome's greatest legal thinkers about the laws (50 volumes) 3. The Institutes --> a textbook that told law students how to use the laws 4. The Novellae (New Law) --> presented legislation assed after 534 -decided legal questions that regulated whole areas of Byzantine life: marriage, slavery, property, inheritance, women’s rights, crimes -even though Justinian died in 565 his code served Empire for 900 years Fill in noteS

17 Justinian’s Code Justinian had Roman laws codified and classified
Omits repetitions, inconsistencies, and statutes dealing with Roman religion Preserved Rome’s legal heritage and later became the basis for most European legal systems

18 Creating the Capital Fill in noteS
his rebuilding of Constantinople was the most ambitious public building program ever seen in the Roman world church building was his biggest passion as he believed it help show a close connection between church and state Hagia Sophia “Holy Wisdom” in Greek built ; decorated in mosaics, lamps and candles; its beauty helped convince Russian nobility that they should adopt Christianity; remained Christian until Ottoman Empire took over Constantinople in 1453 and converted it into a mosque; in 1935 country of Turkey made it into a museum Fill in noteS

19 Byzantine Architecture
Greatest form of Byzantine art Greatest masterpiece is church of Hagia Sophia, meaning “holy wisdom” Huge building in form of a cross; includes murals, mosaics, stone carvings and insets of ivory, silver and jewels Capped by huge dome that rests on massive columns

20 Inside Hagia Sophia

21 Constantinople Fill in noteS
in time city became unparalleled with its baths, aqueducts, law courts, schools and hospitals the main street running through the center was Mese (MEH-see) or “Middle Way” lined with merchants, here shoppers could buy wine from France or tin from England, city seen as a vibrant mercantile area and Byzantine currency was widely accepted around Europe and Asia Minor Fill in noteS

22 free entertainment was at the Hippodrome “horse track” which held 60,000 people
fans cheered on their teams, such as Greens and Blues, in 532 a city-wide riot sparked called the Nika Rebellion (“nika” is what they yelled, meaning conquer) the quelling of this revolt is often attributed to the quick thinking and eloquent speaking of Theodora Fill in noteS

23 Justinian’s Accomplishments
Expanded the Empire Created Justinian’s Code Commissioned rebuilding of Hagia Sophia Helped spread Christianity Increased women’s rights

24 Conflict in the Christian Church
Argument over use of icons (religious images) in worship AD 726 Emperor Leo III ordered all icons removed from churches b/c he believed they encouraged superstition and the worship of idols Emperor’s supporters known as iconoclasts (image breakers)

25 Church leaders resisted order and were supported by the Roman Pope
Christian church in east and west argued over source of religious authority Pope in Rome said he was supreme leader of church Patriarch of Constantinople opposed this claim Eventually led to a schism (separation) in 1054 Roman Catholic Church in West and Eastern Orthodox Church in East

26 The Church Divides Fill in noteS
the distance and communication difficulties led the West and East (Byzantine) to split on doctrines and rituals outcome: Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches Eastern Orthodox built on the early works of church fathers, such as St Basil and St John Chrysostom (KRIHS-uh-stuhm) who later became the patriarch or leading bishop of the east even patriarchs bowed to emperor’s authority which led to controversy the use of icons (religious images used by eastern Christians to aid their devotions) was banned by Emperor Leo III b/c he believed it led to idol worship Fill in noteS

27 this led to iconoclasts or “icon-breakers” who broke into churches to destroy images
1054 dispute b/t east and west came to head when pope and patriarch excommunicated each other over religious doctrine after this schism (split) Christianity was permanently divided between the Roman Catholic Church in the west and the Orthodox Church in the east Fill in noteS

28 Differences Between Two Christian Traditions
Roman Catholic Eastern Orthodox Services are conducted in Latin Services are conducted in Greek or local languages The pope has authority over all other bishops The patriarch and other bishops head the church as a group The pope claims authority over all kings and emperors The emperor claims authority over the patriarch and other bishops of the empire Priests may not marry Priests may be married Divorce is not permitted Divorce is allowed under certain conditions Fill in noteS

29 Fill in noteS now both churches competed with one another for converts
eastern missionaries tried to convert the Slavs, they invented an alphabet for the Slavic languages so they could read the Bible in their native tongue this led to the creation of the Cyrillic alphabet Fill in noteS

30 Orthodox Clerics Get Papal Apology May 5, 2001
Pope John Paul II, in a sweeping statement of regret aimed at healing Christianity’s East-West divide, begged forgiveness for sins committed by Roman Catholics Pope John Paul II singled out the plunder of Constantinople, now Istanbul, as an example of Catholic sin. In an animated voice, he called it “disastrous” and “tragic” that assailants, who had set out to secure free access to Christians to the Holy Land, “turned against their own brothers in faith.”

31 Byzantine Art Glorified religion Icons in homes, churches & shrines
Mosaics - pictures made of many tiny pieces of colored glass or flat stone set in plaster Illuminated manuscript Subjects of Byzantine art appeared stiff and artificial with calm, meditative faces to inspire reverence


33 Hagia Sophia

34 11th Century Crusaders Came from western European kingdoms to help defend the Empire from invading Muslims, the Seljuk Turks But…for three days crusaders burned and looted the city, stealing & destroying priceless manuscripts and works of art Established a “Latin Empire” in Constantinople (lasts until 1261AD)

35 Fall of Constantinople
Ottoman Turks from central Asia attacked the Eastern provinces In AD 1453 the Ottomans laid siege to Constantinople Fill in noteS

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