2 CHAPTER FOCUS SECTION 1Constantinople SECTION 2Justinian I SECTION 3The Church SECTION 4Decline of the Empire
3 Byzantium Hagia Sophia relics theology Greek fire icons Constantine I Justinian Theodora Leo III Terms to Learn People to Know Constantinople Places to Locate
4 Constantinople When Constantine first chose the old Greek city of Byzantium as the place for his new capital, he was aware of its advantages. Byzantium was located near a waterway between the Black and Aegean seas. It was located at the crossroads of the trading routes between Europe and Asia. Invaders would not easily be able to take the new capital.
5 Constantinople (cont.) Byzantium, renamed Constantinople, took over four years to build and was modeled after Rome except that it was a Christian city. Government and church leaders gathered relics, or valued holy objects from the past, to be placed in public monuments, palaces, and churches. About 600,000 people lived in Constantinople during Constantine’s rule.
6 Justinian I After Constantine died, his sons, generals, and emperors ruled the empire. Finally, in 527, a strong, Macedonian ruler named Justinian came to the throne. He came to be considered the greatest Byzantine emperor. Justinian was well trained in the army, law, music, architecture, and theology, or the study of religion.
7 Justinian’s wife, the empress and actress Theodora, was a great help to him. Theodora helped fill political offices and convinced Justinian to allow women more rights. Women finally were allowed to own land equal in value to their dowry, or the wealth they brought with them when they married. In 532, a revolt arose by protesters of high taxes, who were prepared to crown a new emperor. Theodora
8 Section 2-3 Theodora urged Justinian to stay, and together they crushed the uprising. Theodora (cont.)
9 Justinian chose ten men to work out a simpler and better legal system. Tribonian developed a legal code, known as the Justinian Code, that became the law of the land. Another of Justinian’s greatest accomplishments was the church called Hagia Sophia, or “Holy Wisdom.” The church had a gold altar and colorful mosaics, or pictures made up of many bits of colored glass or stone, everywhere. Law and Public Works
10 Hagia Sophia, later called St. Sophia, served the Byzantine Empire for more than 900 years and still stands today. Law and Public Works (cont.)
11 Justinian appointed an officer named Belisarius to reorganize and lead the Byzantine army to help reunite the eastern and western parts of the empire. Belisarius set up loyal and heavily armed cavalry soldiers and developed a series of battle moves that greatly strengthened the army’s striking power. During this time, the first secret weapon in history, called Greek fire, was developed. Conquest
12 Greek fire was a chemical mixture that ignited when it came into contact with water. Its exact formula is still unknown. With army improvements and Greek fire, the Byzantines were able to control more of the Mediterranean. The Byzantines also won back much of Italy and North Africa, defeated the Persians, and ensured the security of the empire’s eastern borders. Conquest (cont.)
13 The Church Church and government worked closely together in the Byzantine Empire. The leader of the Church in Constantinople was called the Patriarch, chosen by the emperor. Under him were the metropolitans, or church officials in charge of the empire’s important areas. Some missionaries, including a man named Cyril, traveled among the Slavs, a people who had settled in eastern Europe.
14 The Church (cont.) Religion was very important to the Byzantines and the use of icons, or religious images used in worship, became controversial for over 100 years. In 726, Emperor Leo III ordered a stop to the use of icons, but in 843, the emperor once again allowed their use. The fight over icons damaged the empire’s relations with western Europe.
15 The Pope broke his ties with the Byzantine emperor and turned to the Frankish kings for military protection. This and other disputes helped pave the way for the break between Western and Eastern Christianity in 1054. The Church (cont.)
16 Decline of the Empire The Byzantine Empire lasted for about 1,100 years. Forces from both inside and outside the empire led to the downfall of the Byzantine Empire. Early Byzantine farmers served in the army in return for land, but when they lost their land they had little reason to join the army. The empire also began to have problems with trade.
17 Decline of the Empire (cont.) Meanwhile, when Christians from the West and Muslims from the East attacked the empire, Asia Minor was lost to these invaders. The population dropped to less than 100,000, and when Turkish armies attacked Constantinople in 1453, they easily conquered the Byzantines.