County of Apulia and Calabria
The County of Apulia and Calabria the Duchy of Apulia and Calabria, was a Norman country founded by William of Hauteville in 1042 in the territories of Gargano, Apulia and most of Campania. It became a duchy when Robert Guiscard was raised to the rank of duke by Pope Nicholas II in 1059; the duchy was disestablished in 1130 when the last duke of Apulia and Calabria, Roger II of Sicily became King of Sicily. The title of duke was thereafter used intermittently as a title for the heir apparent to the Kingdom of Sicily. Drogo of Hauteville was made "count" of Apulia & Calabria by Emperor Henry III, with territories lost by Guaimario IV of the Principality of Salerno. William I of Hauteville, who returned in September 1042 in Melfi, was recognized by all the Normans as supreme leader, he turned to Guaimar IV, Prince of Salerno, Rainulf Drengot, Count of Aversa, offered both an alliance. With the unification of the two Norman families and Drengot, Guaimar offered official recognition of the conquests and at the end of the year, an assembly of Lombards and Norman barons at Melfi met with Rainulf and William, which ended at the beginning of the following year.
In this meeting, Guaimar V of Salerno ensured the Hauteville dominance over Melfi. William of Hauteville formed the second core of his possessions and differentiated himself from Rainulf I of Aversa, head of the territories of Campania. All the barons present offered a tribute as a vassal to Guaimar, which recognized William I of Hauteville as the first of the title of Count of Apulia. To tie it to himself, he offered to marry her niece Guide, daughter of Duke of Sorrento. Guaimar reconfirmed the title of count to Rainulf as well. William stated that the first capital of the county, home of the Crown would be Melfi, a city that would remain outside the partition, it would remain capital for forty years before being moved to Salerno: the center of the city of Melfi was divided into twelve districts, each of them with a palace and a count with control over that area of town. After 1059 the County was named Ducato di Puglia e Calabria, because Robert Guiscard was named "Duke" by the Pope Nicholas II.
Salerno was conquered in 1077 by the Normands and since was no more the capital of the Principality of Salerno: these territories were added to the Duchy of Apulia & Calabria. With this conquest the Normans controlled all continental southern Italy, with the exception of the small Duchy of Naples; the next year the Duchy's capital was moved from Melfi to Salerno and started to look at the conquest of Sicily: the Normands in this way created the precursor of the Kingdom of Sicily, the first unified state in southern Italy, founded in 1130. Salerno remained the capital of this southern Italian political entity for half a century, when the city flourished with the Schola Medica Salernitana. William is considered the first count of Apulia and Calabria. In 1047, the Emperor Henry III took away Guaimar's ducal title, he christened William's brother and successor Drogo Dux et Magister Italiae comesque Normannorum totius Apuliae et Calabriae and made him a direct vassal of the emperor. CountsWilliam I Iron Arm 1042–46 Drogo 1046–51 Humphrey 1051–57 Robert Guiscard 1057–59DukesRobert Guiscard 1059–85 Roger I Borsa 1085–1111 William II 1111–27In 1127 the duchy passed to the count of Sicily.
It was thereafter used intermittently as a title for the heir apparent. Roger II 1127–34 king of Sicily Roger III 1134–48, son of previous, opposed by... Ranulf 1137–39, candidate of Pope Innocent II and Lothair II, Holy Roman Emperor William III 1148–54 king of Sicily Roger IV 1154–61, son of previousThe title was left vacant after the death of Roger IV, it may have been revived for a short-lived son of William II: Bohemond 1181It was revived by King Tancred for his eldest son in 1189: Roger V 1189–93 Province of Apulia and Calabria Chalandon, Ferdinand. Histoire de la domination normande en Italie et en Sicile. Paris: 1907. Houben, Hubert. Roger II of Sicily: Ruler between East and West. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Matthew, Donald; the Norman Kingdom of Sicily. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992. Norwich, John Julius; the Normans in the South 1016–1130. London: Longman, 1967. Norwich, John Julius; the Kingdom in the Sun 1130–1194. London: Longman, 1970. Takayama, Hiroshi; the Administration of the Norman Kingdom of Sicily.
BRILL, 1993. History of the Norman World
The Cotentin Peninsula known as the Cherbourg Peninsula, is a peninsula in Normandy that forms part of the northwest coast of France. It extends north-westward into the English Channel, towards Great Britain. To its west lie the Channel Islands and to the southwest lies the Brittany Peninsula; the peninsula lies wholly in the region of Normandy. The Cotentin peninsula is part of the Armorican Massif and lies between the estuary of the Vire river and Mont Saint-Michel Bay, it is divided into three areas: the headland of Cap de la Hague, the Cotentin Pass, the valley of the Saire River. It forms the bulk of the department of Manche, its southern part, known as "le Marais", crosses from east to west from just north west of Saint Lo and east of Lessay and marks a natural border with the rest of Manche. The largest town in the peninsula is Cherbourg on a major cross-channel port; the western coast of the peninsula, known as the Côte des Îles, faces the Channel Islands. Ferry links serve Carteret and the islands of Jersey and Alderney from Dielette.
Off the east coast of the peninsula lies the island of Tatihou and the Îles Saint-Marcouf. The oldest stone in France is found in outcroppings on the coast of Cap de la Hague, at the tip of the peninsula. Cotentin was an island at one time. Only a small strip of land in the heath of Lessay connected the peninsula with the mainland. Thanks to the so-called portes à flot, which close at flood and open at ebb and which were built in the west coast and in the Baie des Veys, on the east coast, the Cotentin has become a peninsula; the Côte des Havres lies between the Cape of Granville. To the northwest, there are two sand dune systems: one stretching between Siouville-Hague and Vauville, the other one stretching between Cap of Carteret and Baubigny; the peninsula formed part of the Roman geographical area of Armorica. The town known today as Coutances, capital of the Unelli, a Gaulish tribe, acquired the name of Constantia in 298 during the reign of Roman emperor Constantius Chlorus; the base of the peninsula, called in Latin the pagus Constantinus, joined together with the pagus Coriovallensis centred upon Cherbourg to the north, subsequently became known as the Cotentin.
Under the Carolingians it was administered by viscounts drawn successively from members of the Saint-Sauveur family, at their seat Saint-Sauveur on the Douve. King Alan the Great of Brittany waged war on the Norsemen; as the result of his conquests, the Cotentin Peninsula was included theoretically in the territory of the Duchy of Brittany, after the Treaty of Compiègne with the king of the Franks. The Dukes of Brittany suffered continuing Norse invasions and Norman raids, Brittany lost the Cotentin Peninsula after only 70 years of political domination. Meanwhile, Vikings settled on the Cotentin in the tenth centuries. There are indications of a whaling industry there dating to the ninth century introduced by Norsemen, they were followed by Anglo-Danish people, who established themselves as farmers. The Cotentin became part of Normandy in the early tenth century. Many placenames there are derived from the Norse language. Examples include La Hague, from hagi, La Hougue, from haugr. Other names are typical: all those ending with -tot from topt "site of a house", -bec from bekkr "brook", "stream", etc.
In 1088 Robert Curthose, Duke of Normandy, enfeoffed the Cotentin to his brother Henry, who became king of England. Henry, as count of the Cotentin, established his first power base there and in the adjoining Avranchin, which lay to the south, beyond the River Thar. During the Hundred Years War, King Edward III of England landed in the bay of La Hogue, came to the Church of Quettehou in Val de Saire, it was there that Edward III knighted the Black Prince. A remembrance plaque can be seen next to the altar; the naval Battle of La Hogue in 1692 was fought off Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue near Barfleur. The town of Valognes was, until the French Revolution, a provincial social resort for the aristocracy, nicknamed the Versailles of Normandy; the social scene was described in the novels of Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly. Little now remains of the grand houses and châteaux. During World War II, part of the 1944 Battle of Normandy was fought in the Cotentin; the westernmost part of the D-Day landings was at Utah Beach, on the southeastern coast of the peninsula, was followed by a campaign to occupy the peninsula and take Cherbourg.
The peninsula's main economic resource is agriculture. Dairy and vegetable farming are prominent activities. Along the coast, aquaculture of oysters is a growing industry. Cider and calvados are produced from pears; the region hosts two important nuclear power facilities. At Flamanville there is a nuclear power plant, where the second European Pressurized Reactor in the world is being constructed, with commissioning delayed to 2016 or later. COGEMA La Hague site, a large nuclear waste reprocessing and storage complex operated by Areva NC, is located a few miles to the north, at Beaumont-Hague; the facility stores all high level waste from the French nuclear power program in one large vault. Nuclear industry provides a substantial portion of jobs in the region; the roads used for transport of nuclear waste have been blocked many times in the past by environmental a
The Norse people or Norsemen were a group of Germanic people who inhabited Scandinavia and spoke what is now called the Old Norse language between c. 800 and 1300 AD. The language belongs to the North Germanic branch of the Indo-European languages and is the predecessor of the modern Germanic languages of Scandinavia. In the late eighth century Norsemen embarked on a massive expansion in all directions; this was the start of the Viking Age. In English-language scholarship since the nineteenth century, the Viking Age Norsemen, seafaring traders and warriors have been referred to as Vikings; the Norse Scandinavians established polities and settlements in what are now England, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Russia, Greenland, Belgium, Finland, Latvia, Germany and Canada as well as Sicily. The word Norseman first appears in English in the early nineteenth century: the earliest attestation given in the third edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is from Walter Scott's 1817 Harold the Dauntless; the word was coined using the adjective norse, borrowed into English from Dutch in the 16th century with the sense'Norwegian', which by Scott's time had acquired the sense "of or relating to Scandinavia or its language, esp in ancient or medieval times".
Like the modern use of the word viking, the word norseman has no particular basis in medieval usage. The term Norseman does, echo terms meaning'Northman' applied to Norse-speakers by the peoples they encountered during the Middle Ages; the Old Frankish word Nortmann was Latinised as Normannus and was used in Latin texts. The Latin word Normannus entered Old French as Normands. From this word came the name of the Normans and of Normandy, settled by Norsemen in the tenth century; the same word entered Hispanic languages and local varieties of Latin with forms beginning not only in n-, but in l-, such as lordomanni. This form may in turn have been borrowed into Arabic: the prominent early Arabic source al-Mas‘ūdī identified the 844 raiders on Seville not only as Rūs but al-lawdh’āna. In modern scholarship, Vikings is a common term for attacking Norsemen in connection with raids and monastic plundering by Norsemen in the British Isles, but it was not used in this sense at the time. In Old Norse and Old English, the word meant'pirate'.
The Norse were known as Ascomanni, ashmen, by the Germans, Lochlanach by the Gaels and Dene by the Anglo-Saxons. The Gaelic terms Finn-Gall, Dubh-Gall and Gall Goidel were used for the people of Norse descent in Ireland and Scotland, who assimilated into the Gaelic culture. Dubliners called them Ostmen, or East-people, the name Oxmanstown comes from one of their settlements. In the 8th century the inrush of the Vikings in force began to be felt all over Pictland; these Vikings were savages of the most unrestrained and pitiless type. They were composed of Finn-Gall or Norwegians, of Dubh-Gall or Danes; the latter were a mixed breed, with a Hunnish strain in them. However, British conceptions of the Vikings' origins were not quite correct; those who plundered Britain lived in what is today Denmark, the western coast of Sweden and Norway and along the Swedish Baltic coast up to around the 60th latitude and Lake Mälaren. They came from the island of Gotland, Sweden; the border between the Norsemen and more southerly Germanic tribes, the Danevirke, today is located about 50 kilometres south of the Danish–German border.
The southernmost living Vikings lived no further north than Newcastle upon Tyne, travelled to Britain more from the east than from the north. The northern part of the Scandinavian Peninsula was unpopulated by the Norse, because this ecology was inhabited by the Sami, the native people of northern Sweden and large areas of Norway and the Kola Peninsula in today's Russia; the Slavs, the Arabs and the Byzantines knew them as the Rus' or Rhōs derived from various uses of rōþs-, i.e. "related to rowing", or from the area of Roslagen in east-central Sweden, where most of the Vikings who visited the Slavic lands originated. Archaeologists and historians of today believe that these Scandinavian settlements in the Slavic lands formed the names of the countries of Russia and Belarus; the Slavs and the Byzantines called them Varangians, the Scandinavian bodyguards of the Byzantine emperors were known as the Varangian Guard. In the Old Norse language, the term norrœnir menn, was used correspondingly to the modern English name Norsemen, referring to Swedes, Norwegians, Faroe Islanders, etc.
The modern Scandinavian languages have a common word for Norsemen: the word nordbo, is used for both ancient and modern people living in the Nordic countries and speaking one of the Scandinavian Germanic languages. The word Vikings: Vikinger in Danish and Norwegian Bokmål, Vikingar in Swedish and Norwegian Nynorsk is not used as a word for Norsemen by natives, as "Viking" is the name for a specific activity/occupation, not a demographic group; the Vikings were people partaking in the raid. On occasions Finland is mentioned as a "Scandinavian country". Th
Constance, Queen of Sicily
Constance was Queen regnant of Sicily in 1194–98, jointly with her spouse from 1194 to 1197, with her infant son Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, in 1198, as the heiress of the Norman kings of Sicily. She was Holy Roman Empress by marriage to Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor. Constance was the posthumous daughter of Roger II by his third wife Beatrice of Rethel. Constance, unusually for a princess, was not betrothed until she was thirty, which gave rise to stories that she had become a nun and required papal dispensation to marry. Boccaccio related in his De mulieribus claris that a prediction that "her marriage would destroy Sicily" led to her confinement in a convent as a nun from childhood to remain celibate, by 15th century Santissimo Salvatore, Palermo managed to claim Constance as a former member. In the spring of 1168, in Messina, the opposition against Chancellor Stephen du Perche was growing more and more, a rumor spread that William was murdered and the chancellor planned to put his brother on the throne, who would marry Constance to legitimate his claim.
Stephen was forced to flee. Constance became heir presumptive to the Sicilian crown after the death of her younger nephew Henry of Capua in 1172, since her elder nephew King William II did not marry until 1177 and his marriage remained childless, but she was still confined in her convent, her betrothal to Henry was announced 29 Oct 1184 at the Augsburg episcopal palace. In 1185 Constance traveled to Milan to celebrate the wedding accompanied by a grand procession of princes and barons. Henry accompanied her to Salerno in August but had to return to Germany for the funeral of his mother. On August 28 Constance was greeted in the Province of Rieti by ambassadors from the Emperor. Henry and Constance were married on 27 January 1186 at Basilica of Sant ` Milan. In exchange for the marriage Frederick agreed to relinquish his claim to Southern Italy. Before leaving Sicily William II had three main nobles Tancred, Count of Lecce, Roger of Andria and vice chancellor Matthew of Ajello swear fealty to her as the probable successor to the throne at the curia of Troia.
Matthew opposed this marriage. Abulafia points out that William did not foresee the union of German and Sicilian crowns as a serious eventuality. Constance interceded the succession conflict of her maternal-granduncle Count Henry of Namur with her husband and father-in-law: Henry had designated his maternal-nephew Baldwin V, Count of Hainaut as his heir while childless, but he had a daughter Ermesinde in 1186 and thus sought to replace Baldwin with her. Under the instruction of Frederick I Baldwin succeeded Namur in 1189; the papacy an enemy of the emperors, did not want to see the kingdom of southern Italy in German hands, but Henry pressed Pope Celestine III to baptize and crown his son. Knowing that Sicily's Norman aristocracy would not welcome a Hohenstaufen king, William made the aristocracy, the important men of his court, promise to recognize Constance's succession if he died without direct heirs. After his unexpected death in 1189 his cousin, seized the throne. Tancred was illegitimate but he had the support of most of the great men of the kingdom such as Vice-Chancellor Matthew of Ajello.
On the other hand, Archbishop Walter of the Mill, most of the aristocracy, supported Constance. However, Matthew was able to induce Walter, along with other barons, to support Tancred. Joan of England, widow of William, believed Constance to be the rightful successor and vocally supported the Germans. While Constance's father-in-law Frederick Barbarossa was on a crusade Henry and Constance were forced to stay in Germany and could not maintain her claim to Sicily. Emperor Frederick died in 1190 and the following year Henry and Constance were crowned Emperor and Empress. Constance accompanied her husband at the head of a substantial imperial army to forcefully take the Sicilian throne from Tancred with the support of the loyal Pisa fleet; the northern towns of Sicily opened their gates to Henry, including the earliest Norman strongholds Capua and Aversa. Salerno, Roger II's mainland capital, sent word ahead that Henry was welcome and invited Constance to stay in her father's old palace to escape the summer heat, take treatment from doctors for her infirm health.
At Naples Henry met the first resistance of the whole campaign, were held up well into the southern summer from May to August, by which time much of the army had succumbed to malaria and disease. Henry himself fell ill. Although Henry VI recovered, as a result, the imperial army was forced to withdraw from Sicily altogether. Constance remained in Salerno with a small garrison as a sign. Once Henry had withdrawn with the bulk of the imperial army the towns that had fallen to the Empire declared their allegiance to Tancred, for the most part now fearing his retribution. Nicholas of Ajello, son of Matthew and former Archbishop of Salerno, helping defend Naples, wrote letters about the events to his friends in Salerno, thus the populace of Salerno saw an opportunity to win some favour with Tancred, so they besieged the defense
Southern Italy or Mezzogiorno is a macroregion of Italy traditionally encompassing the territories of the former Kingdom of the two Sicilies, with the frequent addition of the island of Sardinia and some parts of Lazio as well. The Italian National Institute of Statistics employs the term "South Italy" to identify one of the five statistical regions in its reportings without Sicily and Sardinia, which form a distinct statistical region denominated "Insular Italy"; these same subdivisions are at the bottom of the Italian First level NUTS of the European Union and the Italian constituencies for the European Parliament. The term Mezzogiorno first came into use in the 18th century and is an Italian rendition of meridies; the term was popularised by Giuseppe Garibaldi and it came into vogue after the Italian unification. In a similar manner, Southern France is colloquially known as le Midi. Southern Italy is thought to comprise the administrative regions that correspond to the geopolitical extent of the former Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, starting from Abruzzo, Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily.
The island of Sardinia, although being culturally and less related to the aforementioned regions than any of them is to each other, is included as part of the Mezzogiorno for statistical and economical purposes. Southern Italy forms the lower part of the Italian "boot", containing the ankle, the toe, the arch, the heel and Abruzzo along with Sicily, removed from Calabria by the narrow Strait of Messina. Separating the "heel" and the "boot" is the Gulf of Taranto, named after the city of Taranto, at an angle between the heel and the boot itself, it is an arm of the Ionian Sea. The island of Sardinia, to the west of the Italian peninsula and right below the French island of Corsica, might be included. On the eastern coast is the Adriatic Sea, leading into the rest of the Mediterranean through the Strait of Otranto. On the Adriatic, south of the "spur" of the boot, the peninsula of Monte Gargano. Along the northern coast of the Salernitan Gulf and on the south of the Sorrentine Peninsula runs the Amalfi Coast.
Off the tip of the peninsula is the isle of Capri. The climate is Mediterranean, except at the highest elevations and the semi-arid eastern stretches in Apulia, along the Ionian Sea in Calabria and the southern stretches of Sicily; the largest city of Southern Italy is Naples, a name from the Greek that it has maintained for millennia. Bari, Reggio Calabria and Salerno are the next largest cities in the area; the region is geologically active and seismic: the 1980 Irpinia earthquake killed 2,914 people, injured more than 10,000 and left 300,000 homeless.. In the 8th and 7th centuries BCE, for various reasons, including demographic crisis, the search for new commercial outlets and ports, expulsion from their homeland, Greeks began to settle in Southern Italy. During this period, Greek colonies were established in places as separated as the eastern coast of the Black Sea, Eastern Libya and Massalia, they included the southern part of the Italian Peninsula. The Romans called the area of Sicily and the foot of Italy, Magna Graecia, since it was so densely inhabited by the Greeks.
The ancient geographers differed on whether the term included Sicily or Apulia and Calabria—Strabo being the most prominent advocate of the wider definitions. With this colonisation, Greek culture was exported to Italy, in its dialects of the Ancient Greek language, its religious rites and its traditions of the independent polis. An original Hellenic civilization soon developed interacting with the native Italic and Latin civilisations; the most important cultural transplant was the Chalcidean/Cumaean variety of the Greek alphabet, adopted by the Etruscans. Many of the new Hellenic cities became rich and powerful, like Neapolis, Syrakousai and Sybaris. Other cities in Magna Graecia included Tarentum, Epizephyrian Locri, Croton, Elea, Syessa and others. After Pyrrhus of Epirus failed in his attempt to stop the spread of Roman hegemony in 282 BCE, the south fell under Roman domination and remained in such a position well into the barbarian invasions, it was held by the Byzantine Empire after the fall of Rome in the West and the Lombards failed to consolidate it, though the centr
Mahdia is a Tunisian coastal city with 62,189 inhabitants, south of Monastir and southeast of Sousse. Mahdia is a provincial centre north of Sfax, it is important for the associated fish-processing industry, as well as weaving. It is the capital of Mahdia Governorate; the old part of Mahdia corresponds to the Roman city called Aphrodisium and called Africa, or Cape Africa. The Catholic Church's list of titular sees includes a no longer residential bishopric called Africa and, since there is no record of an episcopal see in Roman times called by either of these names, it is supposed that the episcopal see of Africa was established when the city was held by the Kingdom of Sicily, as a part of the Kingdom of Africa and when Pope Eugene III consecrated a bishop for it in 1148. An inventory of movable property of the church of Africa exists in an archive of the Cappella Palatina of Palermo in Sicily. Robert Favreau identified Mahdia instead with ancient Ruspae or Ruspe, more taken to have been at Henchir Sbia, north of Mahdia, or at the ruins known as Ksour Siad.
The most illustrious bishop of this see. The Catholic Church's list of titular sees, which identifies the see of Africa as Mahdia, identifies Ruspe/Ruspae as Henchir Sbia; the Mahdia shipwreck – a sunken ship found off Mahdia's shore, containing Greek art treasures – is dated to about 80 BC, the early part of Roman rule in this region. Muslim Mahdia was founded by the Fatimids under the Caliph Abdallah al-Mahdi in 921 and made the capital of Ifriqiya, it was chosen as the capital because of its proximity to the sea, the promontory on which an important military settlement had been since the time of the Phoenicians. In 1087, the town was attacked by raiding ships from Genoa and Pisa who burned the Muslim fleet in the harbor; the attack played a critical role in Christians' seizure of control of the Western Mediterranean, which allowed the First Crusade to be supplied by sea. The Zirid dynasty had its residence here in the 11th century, but was brought to an end by the Norman conquest of the city in 1148.
In 1160 the city came under Almohad rule. The role of the capital was taken over by Tunis in the 12th century during the Almohad era, which it remained during the Hafsid Dynasty; some buildings still exist from the 10th and 11th centuries, such as the Great Mosque and the Casbah, which have helped make the city an important tourist attraction. The city was subject to many raids. In 1390 it was the target of the Barbary Crusade, when a French army laid siege to the city but failed to take it; the city was captured by the Spaniards in 1550. A Spanish garrison remained there until 1553. Charles V offered the charge of the town to the Order of Saint John who ruled Malta but they refused it deeming it too expensive; the emperor ordered the Viceroy of Sicily, Juan de Vega, to dismantle Mahdia despite it being a strategically important stronghold. The demolition tasks were carried out by Hernando de Acuña. Shortly after Mahdia was reoccupied by the Ottomans, but only to live by fishing and oil-works, the town lost its logistic and commercial importance.
It remained under Turkish rule until the 19th century. During the Nazi Occupation of Tunisia in World War II, Mahdia was the site where Khaled Abdelwahhab hid nearly two dozen persecuted Jews. Gare Mahdia forms the southern terminus of the metre-gauge Sahel Metro railway line, which runs from Sousse and Monastir. Mahdia shipwreck List of cities in Tunisia tourismtunisia.com LookLex / Tunisia Mahdia Portal
The Byzantine Empire referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople. 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 and military force in Europe. Both the terms "Byzantine Empire" and "Eastern Roman Empire" are historiographical terms created after the end of the realm. Several signal events from the 4th to 6th centuries mark the period of transition during which the Roman Empire's Greek East and Latin West diverged. Constantine I reorganised the empire, made Constantinople the new capital, legalised Christianity. Under Theodosius I, Christianity became the Empire's official state religion and other religious practices were proscribed.
Under the reign of Heraclius, the Empire's military and administration were restructured and adopted Greek for official use in place of Latin. Thus, although the Roman state continued and its traditions were maintained, modern historians distinguish Byzantium from ancient Rome insofar as it was centred on Constantinople, oriented towards Greek rather than Latin culture, characterised by Eastern Orthodox Christianity; the borders of the empire evolved over its existence, as it went through several cycles of decline and recovery. During the reign of Justinian I, the empire reached its greatest extent after reconquering much of the Roman western Mediterranean coast, including North Africa and Rome itself, which it held for two more centuries; the Byzantine–Sasanian War of 602–628 exhausted the empire's resources and contributed to major territorial losses during the Early Muslim conquests of the 7th century, when it lost its richest provinces and Syria, to the Arab caliphate. During the Macedonian dynasty, the empire expanded again and experienced the two-century long Macedonian Renaissance, which came to an end with the loss of much of Asia Minor to the Seljuk Turks after the Battle of Manzikert in 1071.
This battle opened the way for the Turks to settle in Anatolia. The empire recovered during the Komnenian restoration, by the 12th century Constantinople was the largest and wealthiest European city. However, it was delivered a mortal blow during the Fourth Crusade, when Constantinople was sacked in 1204 and the territories that the empire governed were divided into competing Byzantine Greek and Latin realms. Despite the eventual recovery of Constantinople in 1261, the Byzantine Empire remained only one of several small rival states in the area for the final two centuries of its existence, its remaining territories were progressively annexed by the Ottomans over the 15th century. The Fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Empire in 1453 ended the Byzantine Empire; the last of the imperial Byzantine successor states, the Empire of Trebizond, would be conquered by the Ottomans eight years in the 1461 Siege of Trebizond. The first use of the term "Byzantine" to label the years of the Roman Empire was in 1557, when the German historian Hieronymus Wolf published his work Corpus Historiæ Byzantinæ, a collection of historical sources.
The term comes from "Byzantium", the name of the city of Constantinople before it became Constantine's capital. This older name of the city would be used from this point onward except in historical or poetic contexts; the publication in 1648 of the Byzantine du Louvre, in 1680 of Du Cange's Historia Byzantina further popularised the use of "Byzantine" among French authors, such as Montesquieu. 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", "Romania", the "Roman Republic", as "Rhōmais". The inhabitants called themselves Romaioi and as late as the 19th century Greeks referred to Modern Greek as Romaiika "Romaic." After 1204 when the Byzantine Empire was confined to its purely Greek provinces the term'Hellenes' was used instead. While the Byzantine Empire had a multi-ethnic character during most of its history and preserved Romano-Hellenistic traditions, it became identified by its western and northern contemporaries with its predominant Greek element.
The occasional use of the term "Empire of the Greeks" in the West to refer to the Eastern Roman Empire and of the Byzantine Emperor as Imperator Graecorum were used to separate it from the prestige of the Roman Empire within the new kingdoms of the West. No such distinction existed in the Islamic and Slavic worlds, where the Empire was more straightforwardly seen as the continuation of the Roman Empire. In the Islamic world, the Roman Empire was known as Rûm; the name millet-i Rûm, or "Roman nation," was used by the Ottomans through the 20th century to refer to the former subjects of the Byzantine Empire