Doukas, Latinized as Ducas, from the Latin title dux, is the name of a Byzantine Greek noble family, whose branches provided several notable generals and rulers to the Byzantine Empire in the 9th–11th centuries. A maternally-descended line, the Komnenodoukai, founded the Despotate of Epirus in the 13th century, with another branch ruling over Thessaly. After the 12th century, the name "Doukas" and other variants proliferated across the Byzantine world, were sometimes presented as signifying a direct genealogical relationship with the original family or the branch based in the Despotate of Epirus; the continuity of descent amongst the various branches of the original, middle Byzantine family is not clear, historians recognize several distinct groups of Doukai based on their occurrence in the contemporary sources. According to Demetrios I. Polemis, who compiled the only overview work on the bearers of the Doukas name, in view of this lack of genealogical continuity "it would be a mistake to view the groups of people designated by the cognomen of Doukas as forming one large family".
Nothing is known for certain about the family's origin. Tradition, mentioned by the historian Nikephoros Bryennios, held that they descended from a cousin of the Roman emperor Constantine I who had migrated to Constantinople in the 4th century and became the city's governor with the title of doux; this tradition is, evidently an invention meant to glorify the family, at the time the Empire's ruling dynasty, by 11th-century court chroniclers. In fact, it is more that the surname derives from the common military rank of doux. Nothing is known about the family's origin; some authors have raised the possibility of an Armenian descent, but it is certain that the Doukai were in fact native-born Greeks from Paphlagonia in north-central Anatolia, where their estates were located. The first representative of the family appears in the mid-9th century, during the regency of Empress Theodora, when he was sent to forcibly convert the Paulicians to Orthodoxy, he is only known as "the son of Doux", although Skylitzes interpolates the name of Andronikos in confusion with Andronikos Doukas.
This name is used by some modern sources, e.g. in the Prosopographie der mittelbyzantinischen Zeit. The first branch of the family to achieve prominence was in the early 10th century, with Andronikos Doukas and his son Constantine Doukas. Both were senior generals during the reign of Emperor Leo VI the Wise. In circa 904, Andronikos engaged in an unsuccessful rebellion and was forced to flee to Baghdad where he was killed in circa 910. Constantine was restored to high office, becoming Domestic of the Schools, he was killed, along with his son Gregory and nephew Michael, in an unsuccessful coup in June 913. These deaths, along with the castration and exile of Constantine's younger son Stephen and the death of a Nicholas Doukas at the Battle of Katasyrtai in 917, mark the end of the first group of Doukai recorded in Byzantine sources, it is as the 12th-century historian Zonaras records, that the Doukai line died out, that the bearers of the name were descendants through the female line only. Towards the end of the 10th century, there appeared a second family, sometimes known as Lydoi.
Its members were Andronikos Doux Lydos and his sons and Bardas, the latter known with the sobriquet Mongos. It is unclear whether the doux in Andronikos's name is a military rank; the family was involved in the 976–979 rebellion of Bardas Skleros against Emperor Basil II, but the sons were pardoned and resumed their careers. Bardas the Mongos is attested as late as 1017, when he led a military expedition against the Khazars; the third group of the family, the Doukai of the 11th century, was the more numerous and distinguished one, providing several generals and founding the Doukid dynasty which ruled Byzantium from 1059 to 1081. These Doukai seem to have come from Paphlagonia, were exceedingly wealthy, possessing extensive estates in Anatolia. Again, the relationship of this group with the Doukai of the 9th and 10th centuries is unclear; the most famous members of this group were the dynasty's founder, Emperor Constantine X Doukas, his brother John Doukas and Caesar, Constantine's son Michael VII Doukas, Michael's younger brothers and Andronikos Doukas, Michael's son and co-emperor Constantine Doukas and John's son, the general Andronikos Doukas.
During this period, the family intermarried with other aristocratic clans: before becoming emperor, Constantine X had married into the powerful Dalassenoi family, took as a second wife Eudokia Makrembolitissa, niece of the Patriarch Michael Keroularios. Further dynastic matches were made with the clans of the Anatolian military aristocracy, including the Palaiologoi and the Pegonitai; the most important connection, was to the Komnenoi: in 1077, Alexios Komnenos a general and emperor, married Irene Doukaina, the great-niece of Constantine X.
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
Anatolia known as Asia Minor, Asian Turkey, the Anatolian peninsula or the Anatolian plateau, is the westernmost protrusion of Asia, which makes up the majority of modern-day Turkey. The region is bounded by the Black Sea to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, the Armenian Highlands to the east and the Aegean Sea to the west; the Sea of Marmara forms a connection between the Black and Aegean Seas through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits and separates Anatolia from Thrace on the European mainland. The eastern border of Anatolia is traditionally held to be a line between the Gulf of Alexandretta and the Black Sea, bounded by the Armenian Highland to the east and Mesopotamia to the southeast. Thus, traditionally Anatolia is the territory that comprises the western two-thirds of the Asian part of Turkey. Nowadays, Anatolia is often considered to be synonymous with Asian Turkey, which comprises the entire country. By some definitions, the area called the Armenian highlands lies beyond the boundary of the Anatolian plateau.
The official name of this inland region is the Eastern Anatolia Region. The ancient inhabitants of Anatolia spoke the now-extinct Anatolian languages, which were replaced by the Greek language starting from classical antiquity and during the Hellenistic and Byzantine periods. Major Anatolian languages included Hittite and Lydian among other more poorly attested relatives; the Turkification of Anatolia began under the Seljuk Empire in the late 11th century and continued under the Ottoman Empire between the late 13th and early 20th centuries. However, various non-Turkic languages continue to be spoken by minorities in Anatolia today, including Kurdish, Neo-Aramaic, Arabic, Laz and Greek. Other ancient peoples in the region included Galatians, Assyrians, Cimmerians, as well as Ionian and Aeolian Greeks. Traditionally, Anatolia is considered to extend in the east to an indefinite line running from the Gulf of Alexandretta to the Black Sea, coterminous with the Anatolian Plateau; this traditional geographical definition is used, for example, in the latest edition of Merriam-Webster's Geographical Dictionary, Under this definition, Anatolia is bounded to the east by the Armenian Highlands, the Euphrates before that river bends to the southeast to enter Mesopotamia.
To the southeast, it is bounded by the ranges that separate it from the Orontes valley in Syria and the Mesopotamian plain. Following the Armenian genocide, Ottoman Armenia was renamed "Eastern Anatolia" by the newly established Turkish government. Vazken Davidian terms the expanded use of "Anatolia" to apply to territory referred to as Armenia an "ahistorical imposition", notes that a growing body of literature is uncomfortable with referring to the Ottoman East as "Eastern Anatolia". Most archeological sources consider the boundary of Anatolia to be Turkey's eastern border; the highest mountains in "Eastern Anatolia" are Mount Ararat. The Euphrates, Araxes and Murat rivers connect the Armenian plateau to the South Caucasus and the Upper Euphrates Valley. Along with the Çoruh, these rivers are the longest in "Eastern Anatolia"; the oldest known reference to Anatolia – as “Land of the Hatti” – appears on Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets from the period of the Akkadian Empire. The first recorded name the Greeks used for the Anatolian peninsula, Ἀσία echoed the name of the Assuwa league in western Anatolia.
As the name "Asia" broadened its scope to apply to other areas east of the Mediterranean, Greeks in Late Antiquity came to use the name Μικρὰ Ἀσία or Asia Minor, meaning "Lesser Asia" to refer to present-day Anatolia. The English-language name Anatolia itself derives from the Greek ἀνατολή meaning “the East” or more “sunrise”; the precise reference of this term has varied over time originally referring to the Aeolian and Dorian colonies on the west coast of Asia Minor. In the Byzantine Empire, the Anatolic Theme was a theme covering the western and central parts of Turkey's present-day Central Anatolia Region; the term "Anatolia" is Medieval Latin. The modern Turkish form of Anatolia, derives from the Greek name Aνατολή; the Russian male name Anatoly and the French Anatole share the same linguistic origin. The term "Anatolia" referred to a northwestern Byzantine province. By the 12th century Europeans had started referring to Anatolia as Turchia, it has also been called "Asia Minor". In earlier times, it was called" Rûm" by the Seljuqs.
During the era of the Ottoman Empire mapmakers outside the Empire referred to the mountainous plateau in eastern Anatolia as Armenia. Other contemporary sources called the same area Kurdistan. Geographers have variously used the terms east Anatolian plateau and Armenian plateau to refer to the region, although the territory encompassed by each term overlaps with the other. According to archaeologist Lori Khatchadourian this difference in terminology "primarily result from the shifting political fortunes and cultural trajectories of the region since the nineteenth century."Turkey's First Geography Congress in 1941 created two regions to the east of the Gulf of Iskenderun-Black Sea line named the Eastern Anatolia Region and the Southeastern Anatolia Region, the former corresponding to the weste
The First Crusade was the first of a number of crusades that attempted to recapture the Holy Land, called for by Pope Urban II at the Council of Clermont in 1095. Urban called for a military expedition to aid the Byzantine Empire, which had lost most of Anatolia to the Seljuq Turks; the resulting military expedition of Frankish nobles, known as the Princes' Crusade, not only re-captured Anatolia but went on to conquer the Holy Land, which had fallen to Islamic expansion as early as the 7th century, culminated in July 1099 in the re-conquest of Jerusalem and the establishment of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. The expedition was a reaction to the appeal for military aid by Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenos. Urban's convocation of the Council of Clermont was dedicated to this purpose, proposing siege warfare against the occupied cities of Nicaea and Antioch though Urban's speech at Clermont in the testimony of witnesses writing after 1100 was phrased to allude to the re-conquest of Jerusalem and the Holy Land as additional goals.
The successful Princes' Crusade was preceded by the "people crusade", a popular movement instigated by Peter the Hermit in the spring of 1096. Mobs of peasants and laymen travelled to Anatolia where they came up against the Turks, on the way attacking populations of Jews in the Rhineland, they were decisively defeated at the Battle of Civetot in October. The Princes' Crusade, by contrast, was a well-organized military campaign, starting out in late summer of 1096 and arriving at Constantinople between November 1096 and April 1097; the crusaders marched into Anatolia, capturing Nicaea in June 1097 and Antioch in June 1098. They arrived at Jerusalem in June 1099 and took the city by assault on 7 July 1099, massacring the defenders. A brief attempt by the Saracens to recapture Jerusalem was repulsed at the Battle of Ascalon. During their conquests, the crusaders established the Latin Rite crusader states of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, the County of Tripoli, the Principality of Antioch, the County of Edessa.
This was contrary to the wishes of the Eastern Rite Byzantines, who wanted the land that the Muslims took from them returned, rather than occupied by Latin Catholics. After the retaking of Jerusalem, most of the crusaders returned home; this left the crusader kingdoms vulnerable to Muslim reconquest during the Second and Third Crusades. The causes of the Crusades in general, of the First Crusade, is debated among historians. While the relative weight or importance of the various factors may be the subject of ongoing disputes, it is clear that the First Crusade came about from a combination of factors in both Europe and the Near East, its origin is linked both with the political situation in Catholic Christendom, including the political and social situation in 11th-century Europe, the rise of a reform movement within the papacy, as well as the military's and religious confrontation of Christianity and Islam in the East. Christianity had been adopted throughout the Roman Empire in Late Antiquity, but in the 7th to 8th centuries, the Umayyad Caliphate had conquered Syria and North Africa from the predominantly Christian Byzantine Empire, Hispania from the Visigothic Kingdom.
In North Africa, the Umayyad empire collapsed and a number of smaller Muslim kingdoms emerged, such as the Aghlabids, who attacked Italy in the 9th century. Pisa and the Principality of Catalonia began to battle various Muslim kingdoms for control of the Mediterranean Basin, exemplified by the Mahdia campaign of 1087 and battles at Majorca and Sardinia. Between the years of 1096 and 1101, the Byzantine Greeks experienced the crusade as it arrived in Constantinople in three separate waves. In the early summer of 1096, the first large unruly group arrived on the outskirts of Constantinople; this wave was reported to be ill-equipped as an army. This first group is called the Peasants' Crusade or the People's Crusade, it was led by Walter Sans Avoir. The second wave was not under the command of the Emperor and was made up of a number of armies with their own commanders. Together, this group and the first wave numbered an estimated 60,000; the second wave was led by Count of Vermandois, the brother of King Philip I of France.
Among the second wave were Raymond IV, Count of Toulouse and the army of Provençals. "It was this second wave of crusaders which passed through Asia Minor, captured Antioch in 1098 and took Jerusalem 15 July 1099."The third wave, composed of contingents from Lombardy and Bavaria, arrived in Jerusalem in the early summer of 1101. At the western edge of Europe and of Islamic expansion, the Reconquista in the Iberian Peninsula was well underway by the 11th century, it was intermittently ideological, as evidenced by the Codex Vigilanus compiled in 881. In the 11th century foreign knights from France, visited Iberia to assist the Christians in their efforts. Shortly before the First Crusade, Pope Urban II had encouraged the Iberian Christians to reconquer Tarragona, using much of the same symbolism and rhetoric, used to preach the crusade to the people of Europe; the heart of Western Europe had been stabilized after the Christianization of the Saxon and Hungarian peoples by the end of the 10th century.
However, the breakdown of the Carolingian Empire gave rise to an entire class of warriors who now had little to do but fight among themselves. The random violence of the knightly class was condemned by the church, in response, it established the Peace and Truce of God to prohibit fighting on certain days of the year. At the same time, the reform-minded papacy came into conflict with the Holy Roman E
Paphlagonia was an ancient area on the Black Sea coast of north central Anatolia, situated between Bithynia to the west and Pontus to the east, separated from Phrygia by a prolongation to the east of the Bithynian Olympus. According to Strabo, the river Parthenius formed the western limit of the region, it was bounded on the east by the Halys river; the name Paphlagonia is derived in the legends from a son of Phineus. The greater part of Paphlagonia is a rugged mountainous country, but it contains fertile valleys and produces a great abundance of hazelnuts and fruit – plums and pears; the mountains are clothed with dense forests, conspicuous for the quantity of boxwood that they furnish. Hence, its coasts were occupied by Greeks from an early period. Among these, the flourishing city of Sinope, founded from Miletus about 630 BC, stood pre-eminent. Amastris, a few miles east of the Parthenius river, became important under the rule of the Macedonian monarchs; the most considerable towns of the interior were Gangra – in ancient times the capital of the Paphlagonian kings, afterwards called Germanicopolis, situated near the frontier of Galatia – and Pompeiopolis, in the valley of the Amnias river, near extensive mines of the mineral called by Strabo sandarake exported from Sinope.
The Paphlagonians were one of the most ancient nations of Anatolia and listed among the allies of the Trojans in the Trojan War (ca. 1200 BC or 1250 BC, where their king Pylaemenes and his son Harpalion perished. According to Homer and Livy, a group of Paphlagonians, called the Enetoi in Greek, were expelled from their homeland during a revolution. With a group of defeated Trojans under the leadership of the Trojan prince Antenor, they emigrated to the northern end of the Adriatic coast and merged with indigenous Euganei giving the name Venetia to the area they settled. In the time of the Hittites, Paphlagonia was inhabited by the Kashka people, whose exact ethnic relation to the Paphlagonians is uncertain, it seems that they were related to the people of the adjoining country, who were speakers of one of the Anatolian branch of the Indo-European languages. Their language would appear, from Strabo's testimony. Paphlagonians were mentioned by Herodotus among the peoples conquered by Croesus, they sent an important contingent to the army of Xerxes in 480 BC.
Xenophon speaks of them as being governed by a prince of their own, without any reference to the neighboring satraps, a freedom due to the nature of their country, with its lofty mountain ranges and difficult passes. All these rulers appear to have borne the name Pylaimenes as a sign that they claimed descent from the chieftain of that name who figures in the Iliad as leader of the Paphlagonians. At a period, Paphlagonia passed under the control of the Macedonian kings, after the death of Alexander the Great, it was assigned, together with Cappadocia and Mysia, to Eumenes. However, it continued to be governed by native princes until it was absorbed by the encroaching power of Pontus; the rulers of that dynasty became masters of the greater part of Paphlagonia as early as the reign of Mithridates Ctistes, but it was not until 183 BC that Pharnaces reduced the Greek city of Sinope under their control. From that time, the whole province was incorporated into the kingdom of Pontus until the fall of Mithridates.
Pompey united the coastal districts of Paphlagonia, along with the greater part of Pontus, with the Roman province of Bithynia, but left the interior of the country under the native princes, until the dynasty became extinct and the whole country was incorporated into the Roman Empire. The name was still retained by geographers, though its boundaries are not distinctly defined by the geographer Claudius Ptolemy. Paphlagonia reappeared as a separate province in the 5th century AD. In the 7th century it became part of the theme of Opsikion, of the Bucellarian Theme, before being split off c. 820 to form a separate province once again. Artoxares eunuch, envoy of Persian kings Artaxerxes I and Darius II Diogenes of Sinope Greek philosopher, one of the founders of Cynic philosophy. Alexander of Abonoteichus called Alexander the Paphlagonian, or the false prophet Alexander Saint Philaretos Theodora wife of the Byzantine emperor Theophilus John Mauropous Greek poet and author Michael IV the Paphlagonian Eumenes of Cardia Ancient regions of Anatolia List of rulers of Paphlagonia Adriatic Veneti Bartin Paphlagonia sdu.dk/halys A Geographical and Historical Description of Asia Minor by John Anthony Cramer Attribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed..
"Paphlagonia". Encyclopædia Britannica. 20. Cambridge University Press
Isaac I Komnenos
Isaac I Komnenos or Comnenus was Byzantine Emperor from 1057 to 1059, the first reigning member of the Komnenian dynasty. The son of the general Manuel Erotikos Komnenos, he was orphaned at an early age, was raised under the care of Emperor Basil II, he made his name as a successful military commander, serving as commander-in-chief of the eastern armies between c. 1042 and 1054. In 1057 he became the head of a conspiracy of the dissatisfied eastern generals against the newly crowned Michael VI Bringas. Proclaimed emperor by his followers on 8 June 1057, he rallied sufficient military forces to defeat the loyalist army at the Battle of Hades. While Isaac was willing to accept a compromise solution by being appointed Michael's heir, a powerful faction in Constantinople, led by the ambitious Patriarch of Constantinople, Michael Keroularios, pressured Michael to abdicate. After Michael abdicated on 30 August 1057, Isaac was crowned emperor in the Hagia Sophia on 1 September; as emperor, he rewarded his supporters, but embarked on a series of fiscal measures designed to shore up revenue and eliminate the excesses allowed to flourish under his predecessors.
His aim was to fill the treasury and restore the Byzantine army's effectiveness to preserve the empire. The reduction of salaries, harsh tax measures and confiscation of Church properties aroused much opposition from Keroularios, who had come to think of himself as a king-maker. In November 1058, Keroularios was arrested and exiled, died before a synod to depose him could be convened; the eastern frontier held firm during his reign, Hungarian raids were resolved by a treaty in 1059, while the restive Pechenegs were subdued by Isaac in person in summer 1059. Shortly after, Isaac fell ill, on the advice and pressure of Michael Psellos, he abdicated his throne in favour of Constantine X Doukas, retiring to the Stoudion monastery where he died in 1060. Isaac was the son of Manuel Erotikos Komnenos, who served as strategos autokrator of the East under Emperor Basil II and defended Nicaea against the rebel Bardas Skleros in 978, his mother's name was Maria. Manuel's native language was Greek and modern scholarship considers the family to have been of Greek origin.
It is said. Isaac was born c. 1007. As Maria had died early, on his deathbed in 1020, Isaac's father commended his two surviving sons Isaac and John to the care of Emperor Basil II. According to Nikephoros Bryennios the Younger, the two children were raised with the outmost solicitude: they were raised at the Stoudion monastery with the best tutors, while care was taken to teach them how to hunt and military exercises; as soon as they came of age and his brother joined the imperial bodyguard, the Hetaireia. At a young age as early as 1025, Isaac married Catherine of Bulgaria, a daughter of Ivan Vladislav, the last Tsar of the First Bulgarian Empire. From c. 1042 he held the post of stratopedarches of the East—likely denoting that he was domestikos ton scholon, commander-in-chief, of the eastern field army, but this title is not explicitly attested—and the ranks of magistros and vestes. He was dismissed by Empress Theodora in 1054, replaced by her eunuch confidant, the proedros Theodore; when Michael VI Bringas came to the throne in 1056, Isaac was chosen to lead a deputation of eastern generals to the new emperor.
Michael VI engaged in mass promotions of individuals—in the eyes of the contemporary courtier Michael Psellos, to an excessive degree—and the military sought to partake in the emperor's bounty. This was not a trivial matter: the debasement of the Byzantine currency under Constantine IX Monomachos had affected military pay—not coincidentally presided over by none other than Michael Bringas, military logothete—and while civil officials were compensated by being raised to higher dignities, the army was not; this exacerbated the simmering dislike of the military aristocracy for the "regime of eunuchs and civilian politicians" that had dominated the empire during the last decades of the Macedonian dynasty. At Easter 1057, the traditional time when the emperor paid title holders their stipends, the delegation presented itself before the emperor. Along with Isaac, the delegation included the magistros Katakalon Kekaumenos, who had just been dismissed as doux of Antioch; as the historian Anthony Kaldellis comments, this was a formidable assemblage, as the families represented in it, all of them descended from military men promoted by the warrior-emperor Basil II, would define "the future of the empire for the next thirty years, indeed for the next century and more".
Psellos himself was an eyewitness at the reception of the generals' delegation, claims that the emperor began abusing them at once. John Skylitzes, who wrote in the century, reports that the emperor treated the generals courteously, but agrees that he refused outright to consider the honours they claimed for themselves, notably the promotion of Isaac and Kekaumenos to the rank
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