It survived the fragmentation and fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD and continued to exist for an additional thousand years until it fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453. During most of its existence, the empire was the most powerful economic, several signal events from the 4th to 6th centuries mark the period of transition during which the Roman Empires Greek East and Latin West divided. Constantine I reorganised the empire, made Constantinople the new capital, under Theodosius I, Christianity became the Empires official state religion and other religious practices were proscribed. Finally, under the reign of Heraclius, the Empires military, the borders of the Empire evolved significantly over its existence, as it went through several cycles of decline and recovery. During the reign of Maurice, the Empires eastern frontier was expanded, in a matter of years the Empire lost its richest provinces and Syria, to the Arabs. This battle opened the way for the Turks to settle in Anatolia, the Empire recovered again during the Komnenian restoration, such that by the 12th century Constantinople was the largest and wealthiest European city.
Despite the eventual recovery of Constantinople in 1261, the Byzantine Empire remained only one of several small states in the area for the final two centuries of its existence. Its remaining territories were annexed by the Ottomans over the 15th century. The Fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Empire in 1453 finally ended the Byzantine Empire, the term comes from Byzantium, the name of the city of Constantinople before it became Constantines capital. This older name of the city would rarely be used from this point onward except in historical or poetic contexts. The publication in 1648 of the Byzantine du Louvre, and in 1680 of Du Canges Historia Byzantina further popularised the use of Byzantine among French authors, however, it was not until the mid-19th century that the term came into general use in the Western world. The Byzantine Empire was known to its inhabitants as the Roman Empire, the Empire of the Romans, the Roman Republic, and as Rhōmais. The inhabitants called themselves Romaioi and Graikoi, and even as late as the 19th century Greeks typically referred to modern Greek as Romaika and Graikika.
The authority of the Byzantine emperor as the legitimate Roman emperor was challenged by the coronation of Charlemagne as Imperator Augustus by Pope Leo III in the year 800. No such distinction existed in the Islamic and Slavic worlds, where the Empire was more seen as the continuation of the Roman Empire. In the Islamic world, the Roman Empire was known primarily as Rûm, the Roman army succeeded in conquering many territories covering the entire Mediterranean region and coastal regions in southwestern Europe and north Africa. These territories were home to different cultural groups, both urban populations and rural populations. The West suffered heavily from the instability of the 3rd century AD
Basil II was a Byzantine Emperor from the Macedonian dynasty who reigned from 10 January 976 to 15 December 1025. He was known in his time as Basil the Porphyrogenitus and Basil the Young to distinguish him from his supposed ancestor, the early years of his long reign were dominated by civil war against powerful generals from the Anatolian aristocracy. For this he was nicknamed the Bulgar Slayer, by which he is popularly known and his reign is therefore often seen as the medieval apogee of the Empire. She originated from the Peloponnese, possibly from the city of Sparta, Basils paternal ancestry is of uncertain origins, his putative ancestor Basil I, the founder of the dynasty, being variously ascribed Armenian, Slavic, or Greek origins. Indeed the biological father of Leo VI the Wise was possibly not Basil I, the family of Michael III were Anatolian Greeks from Phrygia, though originally of the Melchisedechian heretical faith. In 960, Basil was associated on the throne by his father, who died in 963.
Nikephoros was murdered in 969 by his nephew John I Tzimisces, when Tzimisces died on 10 January 976, Basil II finally took the throne as senior emperor. Basil was a soldier and a superb horseman, and he would prove himself as an able general. Basil waited and watched without interfering, devoting himself to learning the details of administrative business, even though Nikephoros II Phokas and John I Tzimiskes were brilliant military commanders, both had proven to be lax administrators. Skleros was allowed to live, but he ended his days blind, perhaps through disease and these rebellions had a profound effect on Basils outlook and methods of governance. The historian Psellus describes the defeated Bardas Skleros giving Basil the following advice, let no generals on campaign have too many resources. Exhaust them with unjust exactions, to keep them busied with their own affairs, admit no woman to the imperial councils. Share with few your most intimate plans, Basil, it would appear, took this advice to heart.
In order to defeat these dangerous revolts, Basil formed an alliance with Prince Vladimir I of Kiev, who in 988 had captured Chersonesos, Vladimir offered to evacuate Chersonesos and to supply 6,000 of his soldiers as reinforcements to Basil. In exchange he demanded to be married to Basils younger sister Anna, the Byzantines viewed all the nations of Northern Europe, be they Franks or Slavs, as barbarians. Anna herself objected to marrying a barbarian ruler, as such a marriage would have no precedence in imperial annals, Vladimir had conducted long-running research into different religions, including sending delegates to various countries. Marriage was not his primary reason for choosing the Orthodox religion, when Vladimir promised to baptize himself and to convert his people to Christianity, Basil finally agreed. Vladimir and Anna were married in the Crimea in 989, the Rus recruitments were instrumental in ending the rebellion, and they were organized into the Varangian Guard
Most hunger strikers will take liquids but not solid food. In cases where an entity has or is able to obtain custody of the hunger striker, fasting was used as a method of protesting injustice in pre-Christian Ireland, where it was known as Troscadh or Cealachan. It was detailed in the contemporary civic codes, and had rules by which it could be used. The fast was often carried out on the doorstep of the home of the offender, scholars speculate this was due to the high importance the culture placed on hospitality. Allowing a person to die at ones doorstep, for a wrong of which one was accused, was considered a great dishonor, others say that the practice was to fast for one whole night, as there is no evidence of people fasting to death in pre-Christian Ireland. The fasts were primarily undertaken to recover debts or get justice for a perceived wrong, there are legends of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, using the hunger strike as well. This Indian practice is ancient, going back to around 400 to 750 BC and this can be known since it appears in the Ramayana, which was composed around that time.
The actual mention appears in the Ayodhya kanda, in Sarga 103, bharata has gone to ask the exiled Rama to come back and rule the kingdom. Bharata tries many arguments, none of which work, at which point he decides to do a hunger strike and he announces his intention to fast, calls for his charioteer Sumantra to bring him some sacred Kusha grass, and lies down upon the grass in front of Rama. Rama, however, is able to persuade him to abandon the attempt. Rama mentions it as a practice of the brahmanas, in the first three days, the body is still using energy from glucose. After that, the liver starts processing body fat, in a process called ketosis, after depleting fat, the body enters a starvation mode. At this point the body mines the muscles and vital organs for energy, there are examples of hunger strikers dying after 46 to 73 days of strike. In the early 20th century suffragettes frequently endured hunger strikes in British prisons, marion Dunlop was the first in 1909. She was released, as the authorities did not want her to become a martyr, other suffragettes in prison undertook hunger strikes.
The prison authorities subjected them to force-feeding, which the suffragettes categorized as a form of torture, in 1913 the Prisoners Temporary Discharge of Ill Health Act changed policy. Hunger strikes were tolerated but prisoners were released when they became sick, when they had recovered, the suffragettes were taken back to prison to finish their sentences. Like their British counterparts, American suffragettes used this method of political protest, Hunger strikes have deep roots in Irish society and in the Irish psyche
The Georgenberg Pact was a treaty signed between Duke Leopold V of Austria and Duke Ottokar IV of Styria on 17 August 1186 at Enns Castle on the Georgenberg mountain. The treaty consisted of two parts, the second part consists of a delineation of rights of the Styrian estates and citzens. It has been called by English-speaking historians a Styrian Magna Carta. The case of succession came to pass upon Ottokars death in 1192, the treaty was acknowledged by Emperor Frederick II in 1237. The Georgenberg Pact thus was the first step towards the creation of a complex of lands of the Habsburg Monarchy. The Pact formed a part of the Austrian constitution until the Revolutions of 1848. The original document is kept at the Styrian State Archive in Graz, noble Bondsmen, Ministerial Marriages in the Archdiocese of Salzburg, 1100-1343. Ithaca, NY, Cornell University Press, 1995)
Battle of the Gates of Trajan
The Battle of the Gates of Trajan was a battle between Byzantine and Bulgarian forces in the year 986. It took place in the pass of the name, modern Trayanovi Vrata, in Sofia Province. It was the largest defeat of the Byzantines under Emperor Basil II, after the unsuccessful siege of Sofia he retreated to Thrace, but was surrounded by the Bulgarian army under the command of Samuil in the Sredna Gora mountains. The Byzantine army was annihilated and Basil himself barely escaped, fifteen years after the fall of the Bulgarian capital Preslav, the victory at the Gates of Trajan extended the Bulgarian successes achieved since 976. Later on Tsar Samuil moved the capital from Preslav in the northeast to Ohrid in the southwest, the memory of the great victory over Basil II was preserved thirty years in the Bitola inscription of Ivan Vladislav, the son of Aron. In addition to the Bitola inscription where the victory of Samuil, commander of the Bulgarian army, is mentioned in summary form, several medieval historians have written accounts for the battle.
Not only Byzantine historians wrote accounts for the battle, it was recorded by the Arab chronicler Yahaya of Antioch. More details can be found in the sermon of Saint Photius of Thessaly. In 971, the Byzantine emperor John Tzimiskes forced the captured Bulgarian emperor Boris II to abdicate, the Byzantines had occupied only the eastern parts of Bulgaria, to the west, the four sons of the count of Sredets Nikola continued to rule western Bulgaria. They ruled the territories in a tetrarchy residing in four separate cities in order to fight the Byzantines with higher efficiency. The war against Bulgaria was the first major undertaking carried out by Basil II after his ascension to the throne in 976, although the Bulgarian attacks had begun in that year. One of the reasons for the ten years of inaction was the policy of one of the strongest nobles in Byzantium, who de facto ruled the Byzantine Empire in the first years of his namesake. During that time, the objective of the government in Constantinople was to crush the rebellion of the military commander Bardas Skleros in Asia Minor between 976 and 979.
The local Byzantine governors were left alone to cope with the Bulgarian threat, for one decade in offensive after 976 the Bulgarians achieved major successes. Samuil managed to liberate north-eastern Bulgaria, between 982 and 986 the Bulgarians occupied the main city of Thessaly, Larissa. The constant Bulgarian attacks forced Basil II to take serious actions, in 986, Basil II led a campaign with 30,000 soldiers. The commanders of the armies did not take part in the campaign because they were fighting with the Arabs. The Byzantines marched from Odrin via Plovdiv to reach Sredets, according to Leo Diaconus the objective of their Emperor was to subdue the Bulgarians with one strike
Pope Leo II
Pope Saint Leo II was Pope from 17 August 682 to 28 June 683. He is one of the popes of the Byzantine Papacy and he was a Sicilian by birth. He may have ended up being among the many Sicilian clergy in Rome, at that time, though elected pope a few days after the death of Pope St. Agatho, he was not consecrated till after the lapse of a year and seven months. Leo was known as an eloquent preacher who was interested in music, elected shortly after the death of Agatho, Leo was not consecrated for over a year and a half. The reason may have due to negotiations regarding imperial control of papal elections. These negotiations were undertaken by Leos predecessor Agatho between the Holy See and Emperor Constantine IV and they concerned the relations of the Byzantine Court to papal elections. Leos short-lived pontificate did not allow him to much, but there was one achievement of major importance. This council had been held in Constantinople against the Monothelite controversy, after Leo had notified the Emperor that the decrees of the council had been confirmed, he made them known to the nations of the West.
In letters written to the king, the bishops, and the nobles of Spain, he explained what the council had effected, during this council, Pope Honorius I was anathematized for his views in the Monothelite controversy as tolerant of heresy. Leo took great pains to make it clear that in condemning Honorius, he did so not because Honorius taught heresy, in accordance with the papal mandate, a synod was held at Toledo in which the Third Council of Constantinople was accepted. At this time, Leo put an end to the attempts of the Ravenna archbishops to get away from the control of the Bishop of Rome. The Pope sweetened the deal for the Ravenna bishops by abolishing the tax it had been customary for them to pay when they received the pallium. Also, in apparent response to Lombard raids, Leo transferred the relics of a number of martyrs from the catacombs to churches inside the walls of the city and he dedicated two churches, St. Pauls and Sts. Leo was originally buried in his own monument, some years after his death, List of Catholic saints List of popes
Pope Eusebius was the Bishop of Rome from 18 April to his death in 309 or 310. The difficulty arose, as in the case of his predecessor Pope Marcellus I and this view was opposed by a faction of Christians in Rome under the leadership of one Heraclius. Johann Peter Kirsch believes it likely that Heraclius was the chief of a party made up of apostates and their followers, Eusebius died in exile in Sicily and was buried in the catacomb of Callixtus. Pope Damasus I placed an epitaph of eight hexameters over his tomb because of his defense of ecclesiastical discipline. His feast is celebrated on 26 September, List of Catholic saints List of popes Novatianism This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain, Samuel Macauley, ed. Eusebius. New Schaff–Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge and New York and Wagnalls
Gate of Trajan
The Gate of Trajan or Trajans Gate is a historic mountain pass near Ihtiman, Bulgaria. Today, a tunnel of Trakiya motorway similarly known as the Gate of Trajan Tunnel is near the fortress,55 kilometres from Sofia, the saddle Trajan Gate on Graham Land in Antarctica is named after the Gate of Trajan. При Самуил стигаме до Коринт и Далмация
Samuel of Bulgaria
Samuel was the Tsar of the First Bulgarian Empire from 997 to 6 October 1014. As Samuel struggled to preserve his countrys independence from the Byzantine Empire, his rule was characterized by constant warfare against the Byzantines, in his early years Samuel managed to inflict several major defeats on the Byzantines and to launch offensive campaigns into their territory. In the late 10th century, the Bulgarian armies conquered the principality of Duklja and led campaigns against the Kingdoms of Croatia, but from 1001, he was forced mainly to defend the Empire against the superior Byzantine armies. Samuel died of an attack on 6 October 1014, two months after the catastrophic battle of Kleidion. His successors failed to organize a resistance, and in 1018, four years after Samuels death, Samuel was considered invincible in power and unsurpassable in strength. Similar comments were even in Constantinople, where John Kyriotes penned a poem offering a punning comparison between the Bulgarian Emperor and Halleys comet, which appeared in 989.
During Samuels reign, Bulgaria gained control of most of the Balkans as far as southern Greece. He moved the capital from Skopje to Ohrid, which had been the cultural and military centre of southwestern Bulgaria since Boris Is rule, because of this, his realm is sometimes called the Western Bulgarian Empire. Samuels energetic reign restored Bulgarian might on the Balkans, and although the Empire was disestablished after his death and his mother was Ripsimia of Armenia, the daughter of King Ashot II of Armenia. The actual name of the dynasty is not known, Cometopuli is the nickname used by Byzantine historians which is translated as sons of the count. The Cometopuli rose to power out of the disorder that occurred in the Bulgarian Empire from 966 to 971, during the reign of Emperor Peter I, Bulgaria prospered in a long-lasting peace with Byzantium. This was secured by the marriage of Peter with the Byzantine princess Maria Lakapina, during these years the Byzantines and Bulgarians had entangled themselves in a war with Kievan Rus Prince Sviatoslav, who invaded Bulgaria several times.
After a defeat from Sviatoslav, Peter I suffered a stroke, Boris was allowed back to Bulgaria to take his fathers throne, restore order and oppose Sviatoslav, but had little success. This was allegedly used by Nicholas and his sons, who were contemplating a revolt in 969, the Rus invaded Byzantine Thrace in 970, but suffered a defeat in the Battle of Arcadiopolis. The new Byzantine Emperor John Tzimiskes used this to his advantage and he quickly invaded Bulgaria the following year, defeated the Rus, and conquered the Bulgarian capital Preslav. Boris II of Bulgaria was ritually divested of his insignia in a public ceremony in Constantinople and he. Although the ceremony in 971 had been intended as a termination of the Bulgarian Empire. Count Nicholas, Samuels father, who had ties to the royal court in Preslav
For the saint of the same name see Saint Maxentius Maxentius was Roman Emperor from 306 to 312. He was the son of former Emperor Maximian and the son-in-law of Emperor Galerius, the latter part of his reign was preoccupied with civil war, allying with Maximinus II against Licinius and Constantine. The latter defeated him at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge in 312, Maxentius exact date of birth is unknown, it was probably around 278. He was the son of the Emperor Maximian and his wife Eutropia, as his father became emperor in 285, he was regarded as crown prince who would eventually follow his father on the throne. He seems not to have served, however, in any important military or administrative position during the reign of Diocletian, the exact date of his marriage to Valeria Maximilla, daughter of Galerius, is unknown. He had two sons, Valerius Romulus and an unknown one, in 305, Diocletian and Maximian abdicated, and the former caesares Constantius and Galerius became Augusti. Although two sons of emperors were available and Maxentius, they were passed over for the new tetrarchy, Maxentius retired to an estate some miles from Rome.
When Constantius died in 306, his son Constantine was crowned emperor on July 25 and this set the precedent for Maxentius accession in the same year. Maxentius accepted the honour, promised donations to the citys troops, the usurpation obviously went largely without bloodshed, the prefect of Rome went over to Maxentius and retained his office. Apparently the conspirators turned to Maximian as well, who had retired to a palace in Lucania, Maxentius managed to be recognized as emperor in central and southern Italy, the islands of Corsica and Sardinia and Sicily, and the African provinces. Northern Italy remained under the control of the western Augustus Severus, Maxentius refrained from using the titles Augustus or Caesar at first and styled himself princeps invictus, in the hope of obtaining recognition of his reign by the senior emperor Galerius. However, the latter refused to do so, apart from his alleged antipathy towards Maxentius, Galerius probably wanted to deter others from following the examples of Constantine and Maxentius and declaring themselves emperors.
Galerius reckoned that it would be not too difficult to quell the usurpation, and early in 307, the Augustus Severus marched on Rome with a large army. When Maximian himself finally left his retreat and returned to Rome to assume the office once again and support his son. Shortly after he surrendered to Maximian, who promised that his life be spared, the joint rule of Maxentius and Maximian in Rome was tested further when Galerius himself marched to Italy in the summer of 307 with an even larger army. While negotiating with the invader, Maxentius could repeat what he did to Severus, by the promise of large sums of money, Galerius was forced to withdraw, plundering Italy on his way. Some time during the invasion, Severus was put to death by Maxentius, after the failed campaign of Galerius, Maxentius reign over Italy and Africa was firmly established. However, Constantine tried to avoid breaking with Galerius, and did not openly support Maxentius during the invasion
The Cometopuli dynasty was the last royal dynasty in the First Bulgarian Empire, ruling from ca.976 until the fall of Bulgaria under Byzantine rule in 1018. The most notable member of the dynasty, tsar Samuel is famous for successfully resisting Byzantine conquest for more than 40 years, sometimes the realm of the Cometopuli is called Western Bulgarian Kingdom or Western Bulgarian Empire. The actual name of the dynasty is not known, “Cometopuli” is merely the nickname which is used by Byzantine historians to address rulers from the dynasty as its founder, was a komes probably of the region of Sredetz. According to some sources the dynasty was of Armenian origin, in 969 AD and following the Russo-Byzantine conquest of Eastern Bulgaria, count Nikola assumed control of the Bulgarian lands west of the rivers Iskar and Struma. By the time of the Byzantine conquest of Preslav and the dethronement of Tsar Boris II in 972, Nikola had been killed and the rule assumed by his four sons, Aaron and Samuil.
Both David and Moses lost their lives early – David was murdered by wandering Vlachs, a conflict broke out between Samuil and Aaron as the latter grew more and more pro-Byzantine and on June 14,976 Aaron was executed near Dupnitza. Later the same year, the dethroned Boris II and his brother, managed to escape captivity in Constantinople. Boris II was, killed by mistake by the border guards, as a result, it was Roman who was crowned as Bulgarian Tsar although real power and the control of the army lay in the hands of Samuel. Samuel proved to be a successful leader inflicting a defeat on the Byzantine army commanded by Basil II at the Gates of Trajan. His successful campaigns expanded the Bulgarian borders into Thessaly and Epirus, in 997 Samuel was proclaimed Emperor of Bulgaria after the death of the legitimate ruler, Roman. After the death of Samuel in 1014, the crown passed on to his son, in 1015, he was murdered by his first cousin and son of Aaron, Ivan Vladislav. With his own death in 1018 the First Bulgarian Empire came to an end, some of the nobility and the army rallied around Presian II as his fathers successor.
Presian II and his brothers Aron and Alusian headed a determined opposition to the Byzantine conquest in the mountain Tomorr in 1018, eventually Presian II and his brothers were forced to surrender, and were integrated into the court nobility in Constantinople. An attempt at restoration of Bulgarian independence was made some 20 years by Peter Delyan and he, aided by his cousin Alusian organised an uprising and managed to push away the Byzantines from Ohrid for a short period, but was eventually betrayed by Alusian. Alusians heirs were given titles and land in the Byzantine Empire. After the fall of Bulgaria, Samuels descendants assumed important positions in the Byzantine court after they were resettled and given lands in Asia Minor, Оne of his granddaughters, became empress of Byzantium. Another grandchild, Peter II Delyan, led an attempt to restore the Bulgarian Empire after an uprising in 1040 –1041. Two other women of the dynasty became Byzantine empresses, while many nobles served in the army as strategos or became governors of various provinces, through his maternal grandmother Maria of Bulgaria, the Byzantine emperor John II Komnenos was a descendant of Tsar Ivan Vladislav