Rise Of Byzantine Empire At Its Height Under Justinian


Rise Of Byzantine Empire Under Justinian

Rise Of Byzantine Empire – At Its Height Under Justinian

(330 – 565)

The shaking of Roman Empire at the beginning of 4th Century resulted Rome losing its significance. It was caused by slave riots and never-ending barbarian attacks.

Roman Emperor Constantine moved the center of Roman Empire to the West. He predicted that the Western Rome would fall. He chose Byzantium, a little Greek Colony far from the heartland of Byzantine Empire. Named it Constantinople, transformed the city into a Roman Capital.

Byzantine Empire Capital Constantinople Formerly Known As Byzantium

Rise Of Byzantine Empire The Capital Constantinople

Constantinople Byzantine Capital

Rise Of The Byzantine Empire Timeline

  • Division of Roman Empire

When Emperor Theodosius I divided Roman Empire between his sons. Honorius became the ruler of the West and Arcadius had the Eastern part of the Roman Empire.

When Western Roman Empire collapsed in 476 A.D. Eastern Rome was successful in terms of economics and politics. It was more protected against the Barbaric invaders.

Due to high taxes on land, farmers turned to large land owners, which resulted in a sort of feudalism.

Roman Empire Division By Emperor Theodosius East-West 395 A.D.

Rise Of Byzantine Empire, Foundation By Theodosius

Division Of The Roman Empire As East And West

Why is Eastern Roman Empire known as Byzantine?

The name “Byzantine” was given to Eastern Roman Empire by historians later. It was simply derived from the first name of Istanbul: Byzantium.

Byzantine Emperors considered themselves as successors of Ancient Roman Empire. They were simply Caesars!

Byzantine Soldiers

Rise Of Byzantine Empire Byzantine Soldiers

A nice illustration of Byzantine military men

Entertainment Center of the City: Hippodrome Of Constantinople

A hippodrome that is similar to Circus Maximus of Rome built for Constantinople. It was the only meeting place of the city folk and aristocrats. That caused some riots in the long run.

Two major team dominated the fierce chariot racing games: The Blues and Greens.

Blues were representing the rich folk of Constantinople. Their Blues were the inhabitants of rich areas. There were aristocrats and senators among the supporters. Most of the Emperors including Justininan were Blues.

Greens contained large scale of tradesmen, sailors and craftsmen. Greens had represented more democratic side of the public. However supporters of both teams turned into savages during the riots: Such as Nika Revolt.

The Hippodrome of Constantinople

Chariot Races in Constantinople

Chariot Races in Constantinople

Byzantine Empire had been dealing with barbarian attacks from the 5th Century onwards. Vandals and Attila were the biggest enemies of Rome during this time. During 440s, Huns plundered the Danube and surroundings. They went as far as to Thracia. Which is very near to Constantinople.

Hippodrome Of Constantinople – Byzantine Empire Capital

Hippodrome of Constantinople or Atmeydanı Of Istanbul

Hippodrome of Constantinople

  •  Peak Point of Byzantine Empire: Justinianus

Emperor Justinian definitely the most successful emperor of Byzantine.He ruled for a long time and wanted to expand the Empire to the former Roman Empire borders. However it caused too much expense, left the people of Constantinople poor and angry. It triggered the dreadful Nika Revolt against Justinian.

During the riot hospitals, mansions, houses were set on fire. The riot was suppressed by the famous general Belisarius. The result was 30,000 dead body in the Hippodrome of Constantinople.

Justinianus earned his fame with conquests, buildings and Codex Justinianus. This important book was a summary of Roman law and it established the foundations of contemporary law.

Emperor Justinian The Great Of Byzantine Empire

Emperor Justinian of Byzantine

Justinian I Byzantine Emperor

During his reign, Justinian warred with barbarian tribes and Sasanians. Empire treasury was spent for the building of great monuments like Hagia Sophia. Military campaigns and constructing huge castles made Byzantines broke. Therefore they could not preserved the gainings of Justinian.

Byzantines adopted the heritage of Ancient Greece and all Ancient Greek city-states. Therefore it developed a Hellenic-Roman culture. Differs from Latin Rome. Historians wanted to define this new blend of culture and named it as: Byzantine Empire. Altough the Constantinople’s folk had always regarded themselves as Romans!

Byzantine Empire At Its Height Map Under Emperor Justinian Rule

Map of Byzantine Empire in 6th Century

Map Of Byzantine Empire And Constantinople At Its Height Under Justinian’s Rule

Rise Of Byzantine Empire Depicted On Image

Rise Of Byzantine Empire At Its Height Under Justinian Map

Byzantine Empire at its height. Light green depicts Justinian’s achivements.

Further Recommended Reading:

Rise Of Byzantine Empire At Its Height Under Justinian Blog Post By Serhat Engul

Rise Of Byzantine Empire, Constantinople, Byzantium Under Justinian

Rise Of Byzantine Empire At Its Height Under Justinian was last modified: December 13th, 2017 by Serhat Engül

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