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Civilization in Eastern Europe

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Civilization in Eastern Europe:
Byzantium and Orthodox Europe
Section 1: Byzantium
• Western Roman Empire
crumbled in the 5th
century due to invading
Germanic tribes
• Constantine moved the
capital east to Byzantiumwhere he could respond to
the dangers of the
Germanic tribes as well as
close in on the rich trade
going through Byzantium
• He renamed the city,
Constantinople and made
it his new capital
• As the western Empire
began to decline, the
eastern part became
Empire (modern day
• Empire divided in 395 AD
• Justinian succeeded his
uncle as ruler of the
Byzantine Empire
The Hagia Sophia
The emperor Justinian
temporarily restored the
fortunes of the Byzantine
Justinian mounted a
reconquest of parts of
the empire lost to the
Germanic tribes
The generals Belisarius
and Narses took back
northern Africa from the
Vandals, Italy from the
Ostrogoths, and a part of
Spain from the
Visigoths. The enormous
expense of Justinian's
ambitious military policy
was passed on in taxes to
the residents of the
Justinian held absolute
Justinian is also credited
with codifying the
Roman legal system, and
his code has provided
the model for many
European legal systemsJustinian Code
Code regulated whole
areas of Byzantine life
from marriage to
Empire lasted for 900
• Justinian began a large
public building projectrepaired the fortifications
of the city: 14 mile stone
wall, deep moats, 3 wallsinner most 25 feet thick
• Also built churches like
the Hagia Sohpia
• His wife, Empress
Theodora aided him in his
• Education was very
important to the
Byzantines, who sent their
children to be educated at
public schools or by tutors
• Byzantium suffered from
some setbacks: the plague
(10,000 a day died at its
height), attacks by
Lombards, Avars, Slavs,
Bulgars, Arabs, and
• mid 7th century Arab
attacks start
• 717-718 Arab advances
beaten back due to Greek
• Wars with Muslims added
new economic burdens!
• Arab pressures continued
• Arabs conquered Crete in
9th century
• Muslim active in
Mediterranean trade
• Problems with Bulgaria
settle via military and
marriage. Bulgarian
king called himself tsar
(10th century from
Caesar). By 11th century
Byzantine emperor Basil
II, Bulgaroktonos, slayer
of Bulgarians, defeated
them in 1014 (blinding
as many as 15,000)
Greek fire
Greek Fire was the secret weapon of the Eastern Roman Emperors (673 AD). The "liquid fire" was hurled on to the
ships of their enemies from siphons and burst into flames on contact. As it was reputed to be inextinguishable and
burned even on water, it caused panic and dread. Both Arab and Greek sources agree that it surpassed all incendiary
weapons in destruction. The secret behind the Greek fire was handed down from one emperor to the next for
centuries. The exact composition, however, remains unknown.
Basil II Bulgaroktonos
Miniature of Basil II Bulgaroktonos (the Bulgar Slayer) wearing military uniform and crown
and holding a sword, from an early 11th century Psalter, Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana,
• Byzantine Empire similar to
China: emperor was divine
and head of state and church
• Emperor appointed bishops
and passed religious and
secular laws!
• Importance of education and
bureaucrats! Could come
from any level of society.
• Provincial governors, use of
spies, and carefully military
• Used Roman system of
recruiting locally and
rewarding soldiers with land.
Sons started inheriting
important positions in the
military and displaced
• Byzantium’s religion began to
diverge from Roman
Catholicism-developed into
Eastern Orthodox Church
• Patriarch Michael asked must
bread be baked without yeast
and he attacked celibacy of
• 2 Churches couldn’t resolve
the problems. The Pope
excommunicated the patriarch
and his followers! So the
patriarch excommunicated all
Roman Catholics!
• Byzantium sent missionaries
to spread their religionreached out to Slavs and
developed the Cyrillic
alphabet (includes Russian)
from the missionary Cyril and
Cathedral of St.
Basil the Blessed or
St. Basil's
Cathedral) is a
multi-tented church
on the Red Square in
The cathedral was
commissioned by
Ivan the Terrible and
built between 1555
and 1561 in
Religion and Art
Italian (Spoleto)
The Last Supper
and the Agony in
the Garden,
about 1300
Fra Filippo
Lippi. Madonna
and Child with
Angels. 14571465. Tempera on
panel. Galleria
degli Uffizi,
Florence, Italy
Mother of
God of
Byzantine Empire Decline
• After split between eastern
and western churches the
decline started
• Muslim Turkish invaders
pressuring eastern border
• By late 11th century
Turkish troops (Seljuks)
seized Asiatic provinces.
• Lost battle of Manzikert in
1071 and army never
• Leaders appealed to
Europe for help and they
were largely ignored!
• Italian cities began to
prosper and were granted
special privileges in
• Constantinople was raided
by Western European
knights who pillaged the city
in 1204 on their way to fight
against the Turks in the
• Constantinople fell in 1453
to the Ottoman Turks
• By 1461 the Turks had
conquered the remaining
pockets of Byzantine
control. Bring Islamic power
into Eastern Europe.
• Vikings built forts and settled along
the rivers
• Legend says that the early Russians
Slavs from the north
invited the Viking prince to become
began trade with
their king: Rurik
• 862 Rurik became king of Novgorod
Russian culture grew out
• Rurik was from the Varangian tribe
of the blending of Greek
called the Rus. After his death the land
Byzantine and Slavic
expanded and Rus princes lent their
3 rivers connected the
• 855 Kievan Rus-state that formed from
early territory of Russia:
Novgorod…incorporated Kiev and
Dnieper, Don, and Volga
Rurik’s descendants ruled and made
The forests in this area
Kiev new capital…it facilitate trade
where inhabited by Slavic
between Novgorod and
farmers and traders
Constantinople. Lasted until Mongols
There were also bands of • Travel with the Viking raiders and see
adventurers: Vikings
what areas they pillaged
• Merchandise they brought
to Constantinople included
timber, fur, wax, honey,
and slaves (Slavs)
• Kiev grew into a powerful
state ruled by the
descendants of Rurik
• 957 Princess Olga
converted to Christianity
(Eastern Orthodox)
• Vladimir (grandson)
converted entire country
to Christianity in 989 –due
to studies
• Kiev and its surroundings
were Russia 1st important
unified territory
• Vladimir expanded the state
• 1019 Yaroslav the Wise (son
of Vladimir): led Kiev to even
greater glory by expanded
territory, creating marriage
alliances, and creating a legal
code (Truth of Rus).
• Decline of Kiev began with
the death of Yaroslav in 1054
He dividing up his realm
among his sons instead of
passing it to the eldest. His
sons tore the state apart
fighting for the choicest
territories and this practice
only continue among their
successors!-weakened state
• Additionally, Russian trade
was undermined during the
Mongols/ Tatars in Russia
• Mongol attacks began in 1200
AD led by Chinggis Khan-the
most feared warrior of that
• Mongols were savage killers.
After the death of Chinggis his
sons/grandsons continued to
• 1240 attacked demolished a
weakened Kiev (by Batu
• Mongols ruled southern Russia
for over 200 years where they
set up tribute systems as well
as Khanates (territories)
• Russians were aloud to follow
their own customs/ beliefs
Kiev’s destruction
• In 1240 Mongols demolished Kiev under Batu Kahn
(Chinggis Khan’s grandson). So many inhabitants were
slaughtered that a Russian historian stated “no eye
remained to weep”. Five years later a Roman Catholic
bishop traveling through Kiev wrote “When we passed
through that land, we found lying in the fields countless
heads and bones of dead people”
• Mongols ruled all of southern Russia following the fall
of Kiev for over 200 years! The official name for the
Mongol empire in Russia was Khanate of the Golden
=Khanate from the Mongol word for kingdom
=Golden b/c gold was the royal color of the Mongols
=Horde from the Mongol work for camp
• Mongols very tolerant and
allowed Russians to keep
their traditions so long as
there was no sign of
rebellions. They wanted
obedience and massive
amounts of tribute!
• Russia became increasingly
unified under Mongols and
Moscow rose to prominence.
Prior it had really been a
collection of small
independent principalities
while under the Mongols it
was one.
• Moscow –founded in 1100s
and located along 3 important
rivers (Volga, Don, and
• Moscow’s prince, Ivan I, was
liked by the Mongols and for
his services in crushing
revolts against Mongol rule,
Ivan I got to collect tribute in
all Slavic lands conquerednickname “Ivan Moneybags”.
He became the most powerful
Russian prince. Mongols
gave him the title “Great
• Moscow central seat of
Russian power. Ivan even
convinced the patriarch to
move from Kiev to Moscow.
He and his successors
expanded Moscow.
• Ivan III (1462-1505)-married the niece of the last
Byzantine Emperor –called himself czar (russian
for caesar) and claimed Russia the 3rd Rome. (Was
13yrs old when Constantinople fell to Ottoman
Turks). He claimed that Russia was the 3rd Rome.
• 1480 broke with the Mongols and refused to pay
• Resulted in a stand off between the Russians and
Mongol armies…but no one wanted to fight so
they went home-bloodless standoff marked
Russia’s liberation!
• Turks began migrating
into the Muslim Abbasid
• At first the Turks were
slaves trained as soldiers
and employed as
bodyguards called
mamelukes (Remember
• The Abbasids were
starting to lose territory
and in 945 the Persian
armies moved into
Baghdad and put an end to
the caliph’s political
• After this event more
Turks migrated
• Sekjuks were a large
group that had migrated in
and had converted to
• 1055 the captured
Baghdad from the
• 1071 marched against the
Byzantines in the Battle of
Manzikert and crushed
• Turks went on to occupy
most of the Anatolia
• Turks were very nice to the
conquered Persians and even
placed them in important
government offices like
vizier-prime minister
• Looked to Persians for both
cultural and religious
• Seljuk rulers were called
• The most famous Seljuk
sultan was Malik Shah
• Malik beautified cities
throughout his great empire
• Turks preference for Persian
caused Arabic language to
almost disappear
• After Malik died no strong
ruler followed and this
caused the Seljuk empire to
fall into kingdoms
• At this point is when the
West launched the Crusades
• 1st by Pope Urban II-1095recover Jerusalem
• Under Saladin Muslims
recovered Jerusalem
• Popes called for more
crusades, but they were weak
• Mongols-Hulagu-took
Baghdad. Killed caliphscared way
• Mongols lost power due to
administration problems
• Ottomans rose up and took
back control
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