Byzantines, Russians, and the Seljuks


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Picture from the beginning of the book. The Byzantine empire is in purple, the Russian empire in red, and the Seljuk (Turkish) is in yellow. Note the Arabian peninsula from last chapter. As you can see, some of the Turkish empire is on the peninsula.

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The Hagia Sophia is now a museum in Istanbul, Turkey. It has been both a Christian church and a Muslim mosque.

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Ivan I, Ivan III

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Byzantines, Russians, and Turks Interact(500-1500)

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Main Ideas The Byzantine Empire The split from Rome, rule of Emperor Justinian, and the fall of the Byzantine empire The Russian Empire The origins of Russian culture, Mongol rule, and the rise of the Russian empire The Turkish Empire (Anatolia) Turks conversion to Islam and the rise and fall of the Seljuk Empire

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The Byzantine Empire The Western Roman Empire crumbled in the 5th century -it was overrun by Germanic tribes It was divided into eastern and western empires The capital moved from Rome to Byzantium (Greece) -Emperor Constantine turned Byzantium into Constantinople Even though the capital name changed, the empire is still known as the Byzantine empire It flourish for almost a thousand years.

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The Byzantine Empire contd. In 527 CE, Emperor Justinian came to power He sent his best general, Belisarius, to take back North Africa from the Germanic Tribes. He was successful. Belisarius also tried to reclaim Rome, but the Ostrogoths (a Germanic tribe) did not give it up without a fight. -Rome changed hands 6 times in 16 years. Finally, Justinian and his armies won almost all of Italy and Spain. Justinian ruled with absolute power. He headed the church and the state. -he could appoint and dismiss bishops at will. Byzantine politics were bloody. Of the 88 Byzantine emperors, 29 died violently, and 13 abandoned the throne for monasteries.

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Life in the New Rome The Byzantine Empire (Eastern) did not communicate much with the Western Empire. This isolation led the Byzantines to develop their own character. Most of them spoke Greek, and very few spoke Latin. Even though Justinian had absolute rule, he set up a panel of legal experts to help him regulate society. -the panel combed through 400 years of Roman law, got rid of outdated laws, and made the Justinian Code. Justinian Code: consisted of four works: Code: 5,000 Roman laws. Digest: opinions of Rome’s greatest legal thinkers about the laws. Institutes: textbook that taught law students how to use laws. Novellae: legislation passed after 534 CE.

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Life in the New Rome contd. The Justinian Code decided legal questions about issues like: marriage, women’s rights, inheritance, slavery, property, criminal justice etc. Even though Justinian died in 565, they still used the code for 900 years. While his scholars were busy writing the code, Justinian had builders make a 14-mile stone wall on the city’s coastline. Justinian was passionate about building churches. The crowning glory of his reign was the Hagia Sophia (“Holy Wisdom).

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Greco-Roman Culture Byzantine families valued education Basic classes for students focused on Greek and Latin grammar and philosophy. They studied Greek and Roman literature. They studied famous Greeks, such as: Euclid, Herodotus, and Galen. Because of how much they valued education, the Byzantine Empire was vital in preserving Greek and Roman culture.

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Constantinople’s Hectic Pace Mese (“middle way”): the main street in Constantinople. It was lined with merchants, food stands, and performers. Hippodrome: offered chariot races and performances. It held 60,000 people, and fans of different chariot teams would wear their team colors. Nika Rebellion: fans rioted in response to some of the government’s harsh punishments. The packed into the Hippodrome and demanded Justinian be overthrown. Belisarius and his armies came in and killed 30,000 rebels. -Justinian almost ran away during the rebellion but his wife and chief advisor Theodora urged him to stay. -Theodora had been a woman of low birth who had worked as an actress in a brothel. Justinian fell in love with her and she became the most powerful woman in Byzantine history.

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The Empire Falls When Justinian died in 565, the empire suffered setbacks. -there were riots, religious quarrels, palace intrigues, and foreign threats The Plague of Justinian: before Justinian died, an illness (bubonic plague) hit Constantinople. It probably arrived from India by a ship infested with rats. -542 CE: the worst year of the plague; 10,000 people died every day. -700 CE: the illness finally faded. It had killed a huge percentage of Byzantine’s population.

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The Empire Falls contd. Foreign Threats: the empire was attacked from foreign enemies. -Lombards, Avars, Slavs, Bulgars, and Sassanids all attacked. -674, 717 CE: With the rise of Islam, Arab armies began to attack the city In order to keep control of Byzantine, rulers after Justinian used bribes, political marriages, diplomacy, and military strategy. By 1350 CE, the empire had shrunk. It covered just a small part of Anatolia and the Balkans. 1453 CE: the empire fell to the Ottoman Turks.

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Roman Catholic v. Eastern Orthodox *Extra credit in notes

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Pope Francis Patriarch Bartholomew I

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Timeline of Events 525 CE: Justinian marries Theodora 527 CE: Justinian is made Emperor 532 CE: the Nika riots 535 CE: the second edition of the Justinian Code is published 535-554 CE: the Gothic War; Justinian reclaims Italy 541 CE: the Plague of Justinian 548 CE: Theodora dies of cancer at 48 years old. 565 CE: Justinian dies at 83 years old. *Extra credit in notes

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Question When Justinian’s other advisors all urged him to flee during the Nika Revolt, Theodora told him to stay. What do you think might have happened if he had left?

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The Russian Empire The Slavs: people from the forests north of the Black Sea, ancestors of many of the people in Eastern Europe -the Slavs traded a lot with the Byzantines. They absorbed a lot of Greek Byzantine ways. -Russian culture resulted from a mixing of Greek and Slavic traditions During the early Byzantine Empire, Slavs spoke similar languages and lived in the same area, but had no political unity. They were made up of tribes.

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The Russian Empire contd. Slavs and Vikings: according to legend, the Slavs asked Viking chief Rurik to be their king. -862 CE: Rurik founded Novgorod, Russia’s first important city. -880 CE: Viking Prince Oleg moved to Kiev, where Vikings could sail to Constantinople. -Principality: a small state ruled by a prince. -Viking nobles in Kiev married Slavic people, combining their two cultures. -Primary Chronicle: a history of Russia written by monks in the 1100s Kiev Becomes Orthodox: in 957, Princess Olga of Kiev visited Constantinople and converted to Christianity. -945-964 CE: Olga governed Kiev. Her son, Sviatoslav resisted Christianity.

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Kiev’s Rise Princess Olga’s grandson, Vladimir, converted to Christianity. He made all of his subjects convert. -989 CE: a mass baptism is held in Dneiper River. -Vladimir brings in teachers from Byzantine to help people learn the new faith. Kiev grows: with help from Byzantine, Kiev grows into a big, successful city. -Kiev became the first important unified Russian territory. Yarosalv the Wise: Vladimir’s son, he led Kiev to even greater glory. -He married off sisters and daughters to help relations with other empires -He created a legal code tailored for Kiev. It had a lot of rules about property crimes. -He built the first library in Kiev. -By the 12th century, Kiev had about 400 churches.

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Kiev’s Decline Yaroslav the Wise: Yaroslav divided his realm between his sons before he died in 1054. -His sons tore the empire apart. They fought over the best territories. -They then left the empire to their sons, who left it to their sons. Every new generation fought for the best land. -1095 CE: the Crusades began. It made trade in Kiev difficult because a lot of their trade routes were caught up in conflict.

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The Mongol Invasion Mongols: a group of fierce, nomadic horsemen from central Asia. Ghengis Khan: one of the most feared warriors in history. The founder of the Mongol Empire, one of the largest empires in history. -at its largest, the Mongol Empire stretched from the Yellow Sea to the Baltic. 1240 CE: The Mongols—lead by Ghengis Kan’s grandson Batu Khan—attacked and destroyed Kiev. -a Russian historian said, “No eyes remained to weep” The Mongol Empire ruled southern Russia for 200 years. “Khanate of the Golden Horde”: the name of the Mongolian Empire in southern Russia. Although vicious, Mongols let their conquered people observer their own customs as long as they didn’t rebel. They tolerated all religions. The Mongols wanted two things: obedience and tributes.

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Russia Breaks Free Under Mongol rule, Russia was isolated. They were not exposed to a lot of new ideas. Moscow was founded in the 1100s. -By 1156 CE, it was crude village protected by a log wall. -It had a very strategic location by three major rivers Ivan I: Ivan I helped Russia break free of Mongol Rule -He had a good relationship with the Mongols. He had earned their favor by helping them crush a Russian revolt. -The Mongols made him the tax collector of all the lands they conquered. -They gave him the title of “Grand Prince”.

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Russia Breaks Free contd. Ivan I -Ivan convinced the Patriarch of Kiev to move to Moscow, improving the city’s prestige and making the Church his ally. -Ivan increased his power by purchasing land, winning wars, and engineering smart political marriages. -He was so rich they called him “Ivan Moneybag”

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An Empire Emerges Ivan III: after becoming prince of Moscow, Ivan III openly challenged the Mongols. -He took the name czar, and publicly claimed that Russia would become the “Third Rome” -1480 CE: Ivan III refused to pay the Mongols tribute. -The Russian and Mongols marched to the Urga to face off. Neither side attacked and both marched home. Russia was officially liberated from Mongol rule.

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Question When Yaroslav divided his kingdom amongst his sons it created chaos. What could he have done differently?

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Turkish Empire Rises in Anatolia The Abbasids (a powerful family of the Muslim Empire), struggled to maintain control. When they moved the capital of the Muslim Empire to Baghdad, they lost control of Morocco, Tunisia, parts of Persia, and finally Egypt. Persian armies took over Baghdad and deposed the caliph. Turks: a powerful nomadic group, skilled horsemen and herders. -Turks were so well respected for their skill that the Abbasids bought their children to raise as slaves. -900’s: Turks began to convert to Islam and migrate into the weakened Abbasid Empire. Seljuks: one of the first groups of migrating Turks -1055 CE: they took control of Baghdad from the Persians.

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Turkish Empire Rises contd. 20 years after the Seljuk took over Anatolia they marched on Byzantine. Battle of Manzikert: in 1071, they crushed the Byzantine resistance. -within ten years, the Seljuks conquered most of Anatolia (eastern Byzantium) -Sultanate of Rum: the Seljuk territory closet to Constantinople, named after Rome. Persian Support: instead of cruelty, the Seljuk’s treated the conquered Persians well. They tried to win Persian favor. -They made the Persian city Isafahan the capital of the kingdom. -They let Persians be government officials, including prime ministers (vizier). Because the Seljuks were not as familiar with Islam’s rules, they looked to their Persian citizens for guidance.

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Turkish Empire Rises contd. Shah: the Persian word for “king”; Seljuk rulers were called this. Malik Shah: supported Persian artists and architects led to the building of many mosques. Because the Seljuk admired Persian culture, Arabic became less common. It was kept alive mainly due to religious study of the Qur’an. The Seljuk support of Persians helped prevent revolts and riots. When Malik Shah died unexpectedly in 1092, the Seljuk kindgdom broke down into smaller kingdoms.

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Seljuks Confront Crusaders Seljuks v. Crusaders: when Pope Urban II launched the First Crusade in 1095, he called on Christians to drive Turks out of Anatolia. -Pope Urban II wanted to take Jerusalem from Muslim rule -1099 CE: Crusaders capture Jerusalem and massacred Muslims and Jews -1187 CE: Saladin leads an army and recovers Jerusalem. Saladin signed a truce with England’s King Richard I. They agreed that Muslims keep Jerusalem, but Christians could pilgrimage there. -Although there were other crusades, none were as successful as the first.

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Seljuks Confront Mongols Hulagu: Genghis Khan’s grandson. He marched on Bagdhad in 1258. -he burned down the caliph’s palace and killed tens of thousands of people. -he executed the last Abbasid caliphs by having him trampled to death by horses. The Mongolian Empire was very powerful, but they weren’t good administrators. The Ottomans—a new group of Turks—eventually reclaimed their empire and ruled into what is now modern day Turkey.

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Question Why do you think some empires, like the Seljuk Empire and the Muslim Empire, decided to not force conversion? What are the benefits of forcing your subjects to convert allowing them to keep their own religion?

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