Constantinople was the capital city of the Roman Empire, of the Byzantine Empire, of the brief Crusader state known as the Latin Empire, until falling to the Ottoman Empire. It was reinaugurated in 324 from ancient Byzantium as the new capital of the Roman Empire by Emperor Constantine the Great, after whom it was named, dedicated on 11 May 330; the city was located in what is now the core of modern Istanbul. From the mid-5th century to the early 13th century, Constantinople was the largest and wealthiest city in Europe; the city was famed for its architectural masterpieces, such as the Greek Orthodox cathedral of Hagia Sophia, which served as the seat of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the sacred Imperial Palace where the Emperors lived, the Galata Tower, the Hippodrome, the Golden Gate of the Land Walls, the opulent aristocratic palaces lining the arcaded avenues and squares. The University of Constantinople was founded in the fifth century and contained numerous artistic and literary treasures before it was sacked in 1204 and 1453, including its vast Imperial Library which contained the remnants of the Library of Alexandria and had over 100,000 volumes of ancient texts.
It was instrumental in the advancement of Christianity during Roman and Byzantine times as the home of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople and as the guardian of Christendom's holiest relics such as the Crown of Thorns and the True Cross. Constantinople was famed for its complex defences; the first wall of the city was erected by Constantine I, surrounded the city on both land and sea fronts. In the 5th century, the Praetorian Prefect Anthemius under the child emperor Theodosius II undertook the construction of the Theodosian Walls, which consisted of a double wall lying about 2 kilometres to the west of the first wall and a moat with palisades in front; this formidable complex of defences was one of the most sophisticated of Antiquity. The city was built intentionally to rival Rome, it was claimed that several elevations within its walls matched the'seven hills' of Rome; because it was located between the Golden Horn and the Sea of Marmara the land area that needed defensive walls was reduced, this helped it to present an impregnable fortress enclosing magnificent palaces and towers, the result of the prosperity it achieved from being the gateway between two continents and two seas.
Although besieged on numerous occasions by various armies, the defences of Constantinople proved impregnable for nearly nine hundred years. In 1204, the armies of the Fourth Crusade took and devastated the city, its inhabitants lived several decades under Latin misrule. In 1261 the Byzantine Emperor Michael VIII Palaiologos liberated the city, after the restoration under the Palaiologos dynasty, enjoyed a partial recovery. With the advent of the Ottoman Empire in 1299, the Byzantine Empire began to lose territories and the city began to lose population. By the early 15th century, the Byzantine Empire was reduced to just Constantinople and its environs, along with Morea in Greece, making it an enclave inside the Ottoman Empire. According to Pliny the Elder in his Natural History, the first known name of a settlement on the site of Constantinople was Lygos, a settlement of Thracian origin founded between the 13th and 11th centuries BC; the site, according to the founding myth of the city, was abandoned by the time Greek settlers from the city-state of Megara founded Byzantium in around 657 BC, across from the town of Chalcedon on the Asiatic side of the Bosphorus.
The origins of the name of Byzantion, more known by the Latin Byzantium, are not clear, though some suggest it is of Thraco-Illyrian origin. The founding myth of the city has it told that the settlement was named after the leader of the Megarian colonists, Byzas; the Byzantines of Constantinople themselves would maintain that the city was named in honour of two men and Antes, though this was more just a play on the word Byzantion. The city was renamed Augusta Antonina in the early 3rd century AD by the Emperor Septimius Severus, who razed the city to the ground in 196 for supporting a rival contender in the civil war and had it rebuilt in honour of his son Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, popularly known as Caracalla; the name appears to have been forgotten and abandoned, the city reverted to Byzantium/Byzantion after either the assassination of Caracalla in 217 or, at the latest, the fall of the Severan dynasty in 235. Byzantium took on the name of Kōnstantinoupolis after its refoundation under Roman emperor Constantine I, who transferred the capital of the Roman Empire to Byzantium in 330 and designated his new capital as Nova Roma'New Rome'.
During this time, the city was called'Second Rome','Eastern Rome', Roma Constantinopolitana. As the city became the sole remaining capital of the Roman Empire after the fall of the West, its wealth and influence grew, the city came to have a multitude of nicknames; as the largest and wealthiest city in Europe during the 4th–13th centuries and a centre of culture and education of the Mediterranean basin, Constantinople came to be known by prestigious titles such as Basileuousa and Megalopol
Emperor Wenzong of Tang
Emperor Wenzong of Tang, personal name Li Ang, né Li Han, was an emperor of the Tang dynasty of China. He reigned from 827 to 840. Emperor Wenzong was younger brother of Emperor Jingzong. A rare occurrence in Chinese history, Emperor Wenzong, along with his elder brother Emperor Jingzong and younger brother Emperor Wuzong, reigned in succession. Li Han was born during the reign of his grandfather Emperor Xianzong, his father, Li You was the Prince of Sui under Emperor Xianzong, but while Li You was considered, under Confucian principles of succession, to be the proper heir to the throne, because his mother Consort Guo, was Emperor Xianzong's wife and crown princess while Emperor Xianzong was crown prince, Li You was not created crown prince for some time. Only after Li Ning's death in 811 was Li You, whose name was changed to Li Heng, created crown prince in 812. Li Han was Li You's second son, being born four months after his older brother Li Zhan, his mother was Li You's concubine Consort Xiao.
In 820, Emperor Xianzong died, Li Heng took the throne. In 821, Emperor Muzong created a large number of his brothers and sons imperial princes, Li Han was created the Prince of Jiāng. In 824, Emperor Muzong was succeeded by Li Zhan. Around the new year 827, Emperor Jingzong was assassinated by a group of imperial guards and eunuchs, led by the eunuch Liu Keming. Liu tried to have Emperor Muzong's younger brother Li Wu the Prince of Jiàng made emperor, but soon, a group of powerful eunuchs—the directors of palace communications Wang Shoucheng and Yang Chenghe and commanders of the Shence Armies Wei Congjian and Liang Shouqian counteracted against the conspirators, launching forces to slaughter them. Li Wu was killed in this event. Wang and the other eunuchs subsequently had Li Han named the new emperor by orders issued in the name of his grandmother Consort Guo, his name was changed to Li Ang. It was said that at the start of Emperor Wenzong's reign, he, having observed the wastefulness that his father Emperor Muzong and brother Emperor Jingzong displayed in their reigns, sought to conserve, govern diligently, meet with the officials frequently.
The people thought. However, it was said that Emperor Wenzong, while humble and willing to open to suggestions, was indecisive changing his mind after agreeing to the chancellors' suggestions. At one point, the chancellor Wei Chuhou objected and offered to resign, but Emperor Wenzong did not accept his resignation. Meanwhile, Emperor Wenzong honored his mother Consort Xiao as an empress dowager, continued to honor his grandmother Grand Empress Dowager Guo and Emperor Jingzong's mother Empress Dowager Wang as well, so there were three empresses dowager in the palace, it was said that he served them with filial piety, always offering the best of the tributes to them first. One of the major moves that Emperor Wenzong had to make, dealt with war—as, at the end of Emperor Jingzong's reign, after the death of Li Quanlüe the military governor of Henghai Circuit, Li Quanlüe's son Li Tongjie seized control of the circuit without imperial sanction, hoping to succeed his father; the imperial government took no action, after Emperor Wenzong took the throne, Li Tongjie sent his secretary Cui Congzhang and brothers Li Tongzhi and Li Tongsun to the capital Chang'an to pay homage to Emperor Wenzong, hoping that Emperor Wenzong would approve of his succession.
In response, Emperor Wenzong commissioned Li Tongjie as the military governor of Yanhai Circuit and transferred a former military governor of Henghai, Wu Chongyin, to Henghai. Li Tongjie decided to resist militarily, he was supported by the warlord Wang Tingcou, the military governor of neighboring Chengde Circuit. Emperor Wenzong mobilized a number of circuits around Henghai to attack it, but could not achieve success. Not until 829 was Li Tongjie defeated by the imperial general Li You. In the aftermath of Li Tongjie's defeat, one of the other warlords of the region, Shi Xiancheng the military governor of Weibo Circuit, fearing that he would be the imperial forces' next target, offered to surrender his circuit to imperial control. Emperor Wenzong transferred Shi to Hezhong Circuit and commissioned the imperial general Li Ting to succeed him. Before Shi could depart Weibo, the Weibo soldiers mutinied, killed him, supported the officer He Jintao as their leader in resisting Li Ting. Subsequently, He Jintao defeated Li Ting, the imperial government, with its treasury drained by the Henghai campaign, decided not to wage another war, Emperor Wenzong allowed He Jintao to become the military governor of Weibo.
In late 829, irritated by incursions by Tang's Xichuan Circuit troops, who were forced to resort to raiding Nanzhao's border regions due to the reduction in salaries by Xichuan's military governor, the former chancellor Du Yuanying, made a major attack against Xichuan. The Nanzhao forces advanced all the way to Chengdu capturing it. Nanzhao demanded that Emperor Wenzong take action against Du, Emperor Wenzong exiled him and
Alexander Hamilton was an American statesman and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He was an influential interpreter and promoter of the U. S. Constitution, as well as the founder of the nation's financial system, the Federalist Party, the United States Coast Guard, the New York Post newspaper; as the first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton was the main author of the economic policies of George Washington's administration. He took the lead in the Federal government's funding of the states' debts, as well as establishing a national bank, a system of tariffs, friendly trade relations with Britain, his vision included a strong central government led by a vigorous executive branch, a strong commercial economy, a national bank and support for manufacturing, a strong military. Thomas Jefferson was his leading opponent, arguing for smaller government. Hamilton was born out of wedlock in Nevis, he was taken in by a prosperous merchant. When he reached his teens, he was sent to New York to pursue his education.
He took an early role in the militia. In 1777, he became a senior aide to General Washington in running the new Continental Army. After the war, he was elected as a representative from New York to the Congress of the Confederation, he founded the Bank of New York. Hamilton was a leader in seeking to replace the weak national government under the Articles of Confederation, he helped ratify the Constitution by writing 51 of the 85 installments of The Federalist Papers, which are still used as one of the most important references for Constitutional interpretation. Hamilton led the Treasury Department as a trusted member of President Washington's first Cabinet. Hamilton argued that the implied powers of the Constitution provided the legal authority to fund the national debt, to assume states' debts, to create the government-backed Bank of the United States; these programs were funded by a tariff on imports, by a controversial whiskey tax. He mobilized a nationwide network of friends of the government bankers and businessmen, which became the Federalist Party.
A major issue in the emergence of the American two-party system was the Jay Treaty designed by Hamilton in 1794. It established friendly trade relations with Britain, to the chagrin of France and supporters of the French Revolution. Hamilton played a central role in the Federalist party, which dominated national and state politics until it lost the election of 1800 to Jefferson's Democratic-Republican Party. In 1795, he returned to the practice of law in New York, he called for mobilization against the French First Republic in 1798–99 under President John Adams, became Commanding General of the disbanded U. S. Army, which he reconstituted and readied for war; the army did not see combat in the Quasi-War, Hamilton was outraged by Adams' diplomatic success in resolving the crisis with France. His opposition to Adams' re-election helped cause the Federalist party defeat in 1800. Jefferson and Aaron Burr tied for the presidency in the electoral college in 1801, Hamilton helped to defeat Burr, whom he found unprincipled, to elect Jefferson despite philosophical differences.
Hamilton continued his legal and business activities in New York City, was active in ending the legality of the international slave trade. Vice President Burr ran for governor of New York State in 1804, Hamilton campaigned against him as unworthy. Taking offense, Burr challenged him to a duel on July 11, 1804, in which Burr shot and mortally wounded Hamilton, who died the following day. Alexander Hamilton was born and spent part of his childhood in Charlestown, the capital of the island of Nevis in the Leeward Islands. Hamilton and his older brother James Jr. were born out of wedlock to Rachel Faucette, a married woman of half-British and half-French Huguenot descent, James A. Hamilton, a Scotsman, the fourth son of Laird Alexander Hamilton of Grange, Ayrshire. Speculation that Hamilton's mother was of mixed race, though persistent, is not substantiated by verifiable evidence, she was listed as white on tax rolls. It is not certain whether the year of Hamilton's birth was in 1755 or 1757. Most historical evidence, after Hamilton's arrival in North America, supports the idea that he was born in 1757, including Hamilton's own writings.
Hamilton listed his birth year as 1757 when he first arrived in the Thirteen Colonies, celebrated his birthday on January 11. In life, he tended to give his age only in round figures. Historians accepted 1757 as his birth year until about 1930, when additional documentation of his early life in the Caribbean was published in Danish. A probate paper from St. Croix in 1768, drafted after the death of Hamilton's mother, listed him as 13 years old, which has caused some historians since the 1930s to favor a birth year of 1755. Historians have speculated on possible reasons for two different years of birth to have appeared in historical documents. If 1755 is correct, Hamilton might have been trying to appear younger than his college classmates, or wished to avoid standing out as older. If 1757 is correct, the single probate document indicating a birth year of 1755 may have included an error, or Hamilton might once have given his age as 13 after his mother's death in an attempt to appear older and more employable.
Historians have pointed out that the probate document contained other proven inaccuracies, demonstrating it was not re
Wiener Neustadt is a city located south of Vienna, in the state of Lower Austria, in north-east Austria. It is a self-governed city and the seat of the district administration of Wiener Neustadt-Land District; the city is the site of one of the world's oldest military academies, the Theresian Military Academy, established by Empress Maria Theresa of Austria in 1752 to train officers for the Austrian army. The area once belonged to the County of Pitten, inherited by Margrave Ottokar III of Styria in 1158. After the dynasty of the Otakars became extinct with the death of his son Ottokar IV, the Duchy of Styria passed to the Austrian House of Babenberg according to the Georgenberg Pact. Duke Leopold V of Austria established the town in 1194 and financed the construction of a fortress close to the Hungarian border with the ransom paid for the English king Richard the Lionheart, whom he had captured and held as a hostage at Dürnstein Castle. In 1241, a small Mongol squadron raided Neustadt during the Mongol invasion of Europe but was repulsed by Duke Friederich and his knights.
Wiener Neustadt, meaning more or less New Vienna, gained important privileges given to the city in order to enable it to prosper. It remained a part of Styria, which after the 1278 Battle on the Marchfeld fell to the House of Habsburg and in 1379 became a constituent duchy of Inner Austria. In the 15th century, Wiener Neustadt experienced a population boom, when Emperor Frederick III of Habsburg took up a residence here and established the Diocese of Wiener Neustadt in 1469, his wife, Eleanor of Portugal, died in Wiener Neustadt in 1467. The Wappenwand at the local castle displays the coats of arms of his possessions in the middle, his son Maximilian I maintained his court in Wiener Neustadt and is buried here at St. George's Cathedral; the town also had a significant Jewish commune with Rabbi Israel Isserlin as its most notable member, until all Jews were expelled by order of Emperor Maximilian I in 1496. Habsburg's long-time rival King Matthias Corvinus of Hungary conquered the city in August 1487 after having laid siege to it for two years.
According to legend he dedicated the magnificent Corvinus Cup to the inhabitants after his victory. Maximilian I managed to reconquer his native city in 1490. During the 16th century, Wiener Neustadt lost its status as imperial residence and much of its importance. However, it still fulfilled its function as bulwark against the Kuruc. In 1751 the city received greater attention when Empress Maria Theresa of Austria decided to dedicate the First Military Academy, inside the imperial castle. In 1752, the Theresian Military Academy took up its operations, which have continued to this day with only a few interruptions. In 1768, Wiener Neustadt was destroyed by an earthquake that damaged the castle, rebuilt using plans made by the architect Nicolò Pacassi. In 1785, Emperor Joseph II of Habsburg transferred the see of the Wiener Neustadt diocese to Sankt Pölten. In the 19th century the city became an industrial town after the opening of the Austrian Southern Railway in 1841. In 1909, the "first official Austrian airfield" was inaugurated north of the city.
It served as a training ground for the flight pioneers Igo Etrich, Karl Illner and Adolf Warchalowski, who conducted their tests there. The 1918 Austro-Hungarian January Strike was started in Wiener Neustadt by workers from the Austro-Daimler factory, engaged in arms production, inspired by the Bolshevik seizure of power to take strike action to oppose the war. A key factor in the strike was the halving of the flour ration. Porsche agreed to drive to Vienna to speak to the Minister of Food; however his plea to the workers to return to work was ignored and they marched on the Town Hall. Here they were joined by other workers from the locomotive factory, the radiator works, the aircraft factory and local ammunition plants of G. Rath and the Lichtenwörther. On 14 January over 10,000 workers gathered outside the town hall to complain about the halving of the flour ration. Inspired by the Russian Revolution the workers set up Workers Councils. During World War II, strategic targets in Wiener Neustadt, including the marshalling yards, the Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke factory, two Raxwerke plants which used forced laborers imprisoned at Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp, were bombed.
Bombing operations such as Operation Pointblank left only 18 of 4,000 buildings undamaged. The average monthly temperatures are cool, with summer months reaching 21–26 °C and winter months reaching a few degrees above freezing in the daytime; the Late-Romanesque cathedral, the Dom, consecrated in 1279 and cathedral from 1469 to 1785. The choir and transept, in Gothic style, are from the 14th century. In the late 15th century 12 statues of the Apostles were added in the apse, while the bust of Cardinal Melchior Klesl is attributed to Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Former church of St. Peter an der Sperr, erected in the 13th century and modified in the mid-15th century by the imperial architect Peter von Pusica. Secularized in the 19th century, it is now used for exhibitions; the Theresian Military Academy, a 13th-century four-towered castle, used as residence by Frederick III of Habsburg. The latter had it enlarged and the St. George Chapel built in the mid-15th century: it has notable glassworks and houses the tomb of Emperor Maximilian I.
It became seat of the Academy in 1752. Destroyed during World War II, it has been rebuilt to the original appearance. Water tower Tower of Tortures (Reckturm, early
James V of Scotland
James V was King of Scotland from 9 September 1513 until his death, which followed the Scottish defeat at the Battle of Solway Moss. His only surviving legitimate child, Queen of Scots, succeeded him when she was just six days old. James was the son of King James IV of Scotland and his wife Margaret Tudor, a daughter of Henry VII of England and sister of Henry VIII, was the only legitimate child of James IV to survive infancy, he was born on 10 April 1512 at Linlithgow Palace and baptized the following day, receiving the titles Duke of Rothesay and Prince and Great Steward of Scotland. He became king at just seventeen months old when his father was killed at the Battle of Flodden Field on 9 September 1513. James was crowned in the Chapel Royal at Stirling Castle on 21 September 1513. During his childhood the country was ruled by regents, first by his mother, until she remarried the following year, by John Stewart, 2nd Duke of Albany, next in line to the Crown after James and his younger brother, Alexander Stewart, Duke of Ross, who died in infancy.
Other regents included Robert Maxwell, 5th Lord Maxwell, a member of the Council of Regency, bestowed as Regent of Arran, the largest island in the Firth of Clyde. In February 1517 James came from Stirling to Holyroodhouse, but during an outbreak of plague in the city he was moved to the care of Antoine d'Arces at nearby rural Craigmillar Castle. At Stirling, the 10-year-old James had a guard of 20 footmen dressed in his colours and yellow; when he went to the park below the Castle, "by secret and in right fair and soft wedder," six horsemen would scour the countryside two miles roundabout for intruders. Poets advised him on royal behavior; as a youth, his education was in the care of University of St Andrews poets such as Sir David Lyndsay. William Stewart, in his poem Princelie Majestie, written in Middle Scots, counselled James against ice-skating: To princes als it is ane vyce,To ryd or run over rakleslie, Or aventure to go on yce, Accordis nocht to thy majestie. In the autumn of 1524 James was proclaimed an adult ruler by his mother.
Several new court servants were appointed including Henry Rudeman. Thomas Magnus, the English diplomat, gave an impression of the new Scottish court at Holyroodhouse on All Saints' Day 1524: "trumpets and shamulles did sounde and blewe up mooste pleasauntely." Magnus saw the young king singing, playing with a spear at Leith, with his horses, he was given the impression that the king preferred English manners over French fashions. In 1525 Archibald Douglas, 6th Earl of Angus, the young king's stepfather, took custody of James and held him as a virtual prisoner for three years, exercising power on his behalf. There were several attempts made to free the young King – one by Walter Scott of Branxholme and Buccleuch, who ambushed the King's forces on 25 July 1526 at the battle of Melrose, was routed off the field. Another attempt that year, on 4 September at the battle of Linlithgow Bridge, failed again to relieve the King from the clutches of Angus; when James and his mother came to Edinburgh on 20 November 1526, she stayed in the chambers at Holyroodhouse, which Albany had used, James using the rooms above.
In February 1527 Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond, gave James a huntsman. Magnus thought the Scottish servant sent to Sheriff Hutton Castle for the dogs was intended to note the form and fashion of the Duke's household, for emulation in Scotland. James escaped from Angus's care in 1528 and assumed the reins of government himself; the first action James took. The Douglas family – excluding James's sister, safely in England – were forced into exile and James besieged their castle at Tantallon, he subdued the Border rebels and the chiefs of the Western Isles. As well as taking advice from his nobility and using the services of the Duke of Albany in France and at Rome, James had a team of professional lawyers and diplomats, including Adam Otterburn and Thomas Erskine of Haltoun, his pursemaster and yeoman of the wardrobe, John Tennent of Listonschiels, was sent on an errand to England, though he got a frosty reception. James increased his income by tightening control over royal estates and from the profits of justice and feudal rights.
He gave his illegitimate sons lucrative benefices, diverting substantial church wealth into his coffers. James spent a large amount of his wealth on building work at Stirling Castle, Falkland Palace, Linlithgow Palace and Holyrood, he built up a collection of tapestries from those inherited from his father. James strengthened the royal fleet. In 1540 he sailed to Kirkwall in Orkney Lewis, in his ship the Salamander, first making a will in Leith, knowing this to be "uncertane aventuris." The purpose of this voyage was to show the royal presence and hold regional courts, called "justice ayres." Domestic and international policy was affected by the Reformation after Henry VIII broke from the Catholic Church. James V did not tolerate heresy, during his reign a number of outspoken Protestants were persecuted; the most famous of these was Patrick Hamilton, burned at the stake as a heretic at St Andrews in 1528. In the reign, the English ambassador Ralph Sadler tried to encourage James to close the monasteries and take their revenue so that he would not have to keep sheep like a mean subject.
James replied that he had no sheep, he could depend on his god-father the King of France, it was against reason to close the abbeys that "stand these many years, God's service
The Tang dynasty or the Tang Empire was an imperial dynasty of China spanning the 7th to 10th centuries. It was followed by the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. Historians regard the Tang as a high point in Chinese civilization, a golden age of cosmopolitan culture. Tang territory, acquired through the military campaigns of its early rulers, rivaled that of the Han dynasty; the Tang capital at Chang'an was the most populous city in the world in its day. The Lǐ family founded the dynasty, seizing power during the collapse of the Sui Empire; the dynasty was interrupted when Empress Wu Zetian seized the throne, proclaiming the Second Zhou dynasty and becoming the only Chinese empress regnant. In two censuses of the 7th and 8th centuries, the Tang records estimated the population by number of registered households at about 50 million people, yet when the central government was breaking down and unable to compile an accurate census of the population in the 9th century, it is estimated that the population had grown by to about 80 million people.
With its large population base, the dynasty was able to raise professional and conscripted armies of hundreds of thousands of troops to contend with nomadic powers in dominating Inner Asia and the lucrative trade-routes along the Silk Road. Various kingdoms and states paid tribute to the Tang court, while the Tang conquered or subdued several regions which it indirectly controlled through a protectorate system. Besides political hegemony, the Tang exerted a powerful cultural influence over neighboring East Asian states such as those in Japan and Korea; the Tang dynasty was a period of progress and stability in the first half of the dynasty's rule, until the An Lushan Rebellion and the decline of central authority in the half of the dynasty. Like the previous Sui dynasty, the Tang dynasty maintained a civil-service system by recruiting scholar-officials through standardized examinations and recommendations to office; the rise of regional military governors known as jiedushi during the 9th century undermined this civil order.
Chinese culture further matured during the Tang era. Two of China's most famous poets, Li Bai and Du Fu, belonged to this age, as did many famous painters such as Han Gan, Zhang Xuan, Zhou Fang. Scholars of this period compiled a rich variety of historical literature, as well as encyclopedias and geographical works; the adoption of the title Tängri Qaghan by the Tang Emperor Taizong in addition to his title as emperor was eastern Asia's first "simultaneous kingship". Many notable innovations occurred including the development of woodblock printing. Buddhism became a major influence with native Chinese sects gaining prominence. However, in the 840s the Emperor Wuzong of Tang enacted policies to persecute Buddhism, which subsequently declined in influence. Although the dynasty and central government had gone into decline by the 9th century and culture continued to flourish; the weakened central government withdrew from managing the economy, but the country's mercantile affairs stayed intact and commercial trade continued to thrive regardless.
However, agrarian rebellions in the latter half of the 9th century resulted in damaging atrocities such as the Guangzhou massacre of 878–879. The Li family belonged to the northwest military aristocracy prevalent during the Sui dynasty and claimed to be paternally descended from the Daoist founder, Laozi the Han dynasty General Li Guang and Western Liang ruler Li Gao; this family was known as the Longxi Li lineage. The Tang Emperors had Xianbei maternal ancestry, from Emperor Gaozu of Tang's Xianbei mother, Duchess Dugu. Li Yuan was Duke of Tang and governor of Taiyuan, modern Shanxi, during the Sui dynasty's collapse, caused in part by the Sui failure to conquer the northern part of the Korean peninsula during the Goguryeo–Sui War, he had prestige and military experience, was a first cousin of Emperor Yang of Sui. Li Yuan rose in rebellion in 617, along with his son and his militant daughter Princess Pingyang, who raised and commanded her own troops. In winter 617, Li Yuan occupied Chang'an, relegated Emperor Yang to the position of Taishang Huang or retired emperor, acted as regent to the puppet child-emperor, Yang You.
On the news of Emperor Yang's murder by General Yuwen Huaji on June 18, 618, Li Yuan declared himself the emperor of a new dynasty, the Tang. Li Yuan, known as Emperor Gaozu of Tang, ruled until 626, when he was forcefully deposed by his son Li Shimin, the Prince of Qin. Li Shimin had commanded troops since the age of 18, had prowess with bow and arrow and lance and was known for his effective cavalry charges. Fighting a numerically superior army, he defeated Dou Jiande at Luoyang in the Battle of Hulao on May 28, 621. In a violent elimination of royal family due to fear of assassination, Li Shimin ambushed and killed two of his brothers, Li Yuanji and Crown prince Li Jiancheng, in the Xuanwu Gate Incident on July 2, 626. Shortly thereafter, his father abdicated in his favor and Li Shimin ascended the throne, he is conventionally known by his temple name Taizong. Although killing two brothers and deposing his father contradicted the Confucian value of filial piety, Taizong showed himself to be a capable leader who listened to the advice of the wisest members of his council.
In 628, Emperor Taizong held a Buddhist memorial service for the casualties of war, in 629 he ha
The Zuiderzee was a shallow bay of the North Sea in the northwest of the Netherlands, extending about 100 km inland and at most 50 km wide, with an overall depth of about 4 to 5 metres and a coastline of about 300 km. It covered 5,000 km2, its name is Dutch for "southern sea", indicating that the name originates in Friesland, to the north of the Zuiderzee. In the 20th century the majority of the Zuiderzee was closed off from the North Sea by the construction of the Afsluitdijk, leaving the mouth of the inlet to become part of the Wadden Sea; the salt water inlet changed into a fresh water lake now called the IJsselmeer after the river that drains into it, by means of drainage and polders, an area of some 1,500 km2 was reclaimed as land. This land became the province of Flevoland, with a population of nearly 400,000. In classical times there was a body of water in this location, called Lacus Flevo by Roman authors, it was much smaller than its forms and its connection to the main sea was much narrower.
Over time these lakes eroded their soft peat shores and spread. Some part of this area of water was called the Vlie; the Marsdiep was once a river. During the early Middle Ages this began to change as rising sea levels and storms started to eat away at the coastal areas which consisted of peatlands. In this period the inlet was referred to as the Almere, indicating it was still more of a lake, but the mouth and size of the inlet were much widened in the 12th century and after a disastrous flood in 1282 broke through the barrier dunes near Texel; the disaster marked the rise of Amsterdam on the southwestern end of the bay, since seagoing traffic of the Baltic trade could now visit. The more massive St. Lucia's flood occurred 14 December 1287, when the seawalls broke during a storm, killing 50,000 to 80,000 people in the fifth largest flood in recorded history; the name "Zuiderzee" came into general usage around this period. The size of this inland sea remained stable from the 15th century onwards due to improvements in dikes, but when storms pushed North Sea water into the inlet, the Zuiderzee became a volatile cauldron of water resulting in flooding and the loss of ships.
For example, on 18 November 1421, a seawall at the Zuiderzee dike broke, which flooded 72 villages and killed about 10,000 people. This was the Second St. Elizabeth's flood; the Netherlands was part of the First French Empire between 1810 and 1813. A département was formed in 1811 and named as Zuyderzée after the Zuiderzee, of which the territory corresponded to the present provinces of North Holland and Utrecht. In 1928, the 6-meter and 8-meter sailing events for the Amsterdam Summer Olympics were held on the Zuiderzee. Around the Zuiderzee many fishing villages grew up and several developed into walled towns with extensive trade connections, in particular Kampen, a town in Overijssel, also towns in Holland such as Amsterdam and Enkhuizen; these towns traded at first with ports on the Baltic Sea, in England, in the Hanseatic League, but also with the rest of the world when the Netherlands established its colonial empire. When that lucrative trade diminished, most of the towns fell back on fishing and some industry until the 20th century when tourism became the major source of income.
Contained within the Zuiderzee were five small islands, the remains of what were once larger islands, peninsulas connected to the mainland, or in the case of Pampus, an artificial island. These were Wieringen, Schokland and Marken; the inhabitants of these islands subsisted on fishing and related industries and still do in the case of Urk and Wieringen. All of these islands, except for Pampus, are now connected to it; the construction in the early 20th century of a large enclosing dam tamed the Zuiderzee. The creation of this dam was a response to the flood of January 1916. Plans for closing the Zuiderzee had been made over thirty years earlier but had not yet passed in parliament. With the completion of the Afsluitdijk in 1932, the Zuiderzee became the IJsselmeer, large areas of water could be reclaimed for farming and housing; these areas, known as polders, were the Wieringermeer, the Noordoostpolder, Flevoland. This enormous project under the direction of Cornelis Lely, called the Zuiderzee Works, ran from 1919 to 1986, culminating in the creation of the new province of Flevoland.
The reclamation project was intended to reclaim the former southwestern portion of the Zuiderzee, a polder that would have been called the Markerwaard, but this final stage of the reclamation project was indefinitely postponed in the 1980s. Zuiderzee Museum, dedicated to the history and culture of the former Zuiderzee Zuiderzee Cycle Route, long-distance cycle route around the former Zuiderzee