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Cause of The Fall of The Byzantine Empire

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Cause of The Fall of The Byzantine Empire essay

The fall of the byzantine empire Quick Rise to power

The byzantine empire began its rise to power as the roman empire was coming to it a end as it was damaged by civil wars. Constantine the first gain power and in the fourth century and established constantinople as the the capital.

Constantine’s successors continued expanding the empire, ultimately leading to the Byzantine Empire to cover most of the Mediterranean region encompassing Egypt, Sicily, Italy, Greece, and Rome. How ever that was one key fault to the empire end as over expansion prove to be the down fall for the empire Simply the position of the Eastern Empire was unfavorable, geographically speaking, which surrounded them with enemies. To the south, there was various amounts of Saracens, whether it be the Umayyad Caliphate, the Seljuks, or the Ottomans. That did not recognize the Pope as the top religious authority in Christendom this strained relations, making Western support for Byzantium less of a sure thing., the Eurasian steppe ended on the Eastern Empire’s doorstep around the area of modern Romania. This made sure the Basileus in Constantinople had constant nomadic threats such as the Bulgarians and Pechenegs.

Threats to the Byzantine Empire

The placement of the empire saw the empire combating numerous challenges. During the Late antiquity period, the Byzantine Empire had to deal with invasions from invasions from the Atilla the Hun, the Visigoths, the Vandals, and the Alans from numerous fronts and expanding the empire became a difficult task. The 5th century was began the rise of Islam in the Mediterranean sparked fear as islama kept gett closing to the capital. Battles like the Battle of Yarmouk in 636 CE between the Byzantine Empire and the Rashidun Caliphate saw the empire experience another humiliating defeat. With victories coming left and right the arabs started their campaigns to take and gain land from the byzantine empire in which they succeeded to conquer Asia Minor, Sicily, Crete, and Cyprus. With the fall of Egypt it became a major blow to the Byzantine Empire, the region was a important source of grain and manufactured goods.

The Byzantine Empire saw the rise of another challenge in the form of the Seljuk Empire in the 11th century, and clashed at the Battle of Manzikert in August 1071, which resulted in the decisive defeat of the Byzantine Empire. The humiliating defeat was compounded with Byzantine’s loss of Armenia and Anatolia to the Seljuk Empire. The byzantine empire had vast territories captured in italy by small nations like the Normans

THE CRUSADES

To combat these many threats and With the Seljuk Turks located in central Asia bearing down on Constantinople, Emperor Alexius I called for help from allies in the west, resulting in the declaration of “holy war” by Pope Urban II, that began the First Crusade.

As armies from France, Germany and Italy poured into Byzantium, Alexius tried to force their leaders to swear an oath of loyalty to him in order to guarantee that land gained from the Turks would be restored to his empire. The whole point of the crusades was to help the slowly weakening byzantine empire to reclaim lost land, however it was perhaps the The Crusadgreastest threats to the empire as in 1204 CE The Fourth Crusade, in particular, was incredibly devastating to the Byzantine Empire, as =soldiers in the crusade mutinied and invaded Constantinople where they engaged in widespread looting, vandalism, and destruction.

The great sack of Constantinople became a major turning point in history the sheer idea ‘ to attack the world’s largest Christian city was unprecedented , unexpected and immediately controversial, and blasphemy to attack such a holy place. Religion relations between the Catholic and Orthodox churches were catastrophically wounded for many centuries afterwards, Christendom in the east was greatly reduced and gained the chance for a rise of islam into europe Plagues The Plague of Justinian, which decimated the population of the empire between 541 CE and 542 CE. During its peak, the plague led to the death of 5,000 people each day in Constantinople Civil Wars.

All this culminated into two civil wars that not also hurt the military but the social aspects if the byzantine empire, one in 1321 another in 1341.That both diminished the Byzantines’ military capabilities.The civil war of 1321–1328 was led by of emperor Andronikos II who was supported by Byzantine Magnates who often clashed with the centralized authority of Byzantium. The result of the first war was inconclusive and ended with Andronikos III being made co-emperor with his grandfather. Many took this as a opportunity such as the turks to make notable gains in Anatolia and set up their capital in Bursa 100 kilometers from Constantinople the Byzantine capital.

With the death of Andronikos III in 1341 started another civil war to broke out until 1347. When Andronikos III died he left his six-year-old son under the regency of Anne of Savoy. The de facto leader of the empire, John Cantacuzenus, was a close associate of the deceased emperor an extremely wealthy landowner. However, things did not go his way and he was declared emperor in Thrace. The war was based off class the rich supported Cantacuzenus while the poorer folk supported the empress regent. The civil war was exploited by the Serbs, whose ruler took advantage of the chaos to proclaim himself emperor of the Serbs and Greeks. The Serbian king Stefan Uroš IV Dušan made significant territorial gains in Byzantine Macedonia in 1345 and conquered large swathes of Thessaly and Epirus in 1348.

In order to secure his authority during the civil war, Cantacuzenus hired Turkish mercenaries in 1352 they seized Gallipoli from the Byzantines. Although in 1354 the rogue mercenaries were defeated by western crusaders, Turkish armies would eventually control many of the Byzantine Empire’s once-held territories. These two monumental civil wars severely diminished the Byzantine Empire’s military strength and allowed its opportunistic enemies to make substantial gains into Byzantine territory.

Rise of the Ottomans

By the end of the 14th century, Byzantine was at a very weakneed stat a dependency of the Ottoman Turks in which almost who almost surrounded Constantinople. Unsurprisingly, the Turks made the capture of Constantinople its number one priority and began The first Siege of Constantinople began in 1397 but stopped due to attacks of the mongols Ottoman Sultan Murad II led a Second Siege of Constantinople in 1442, but it was quickly lifted after fierce resistance by defenders of the city. In 1453, Sultan Mehmet II decided to end the Byzantine ‘Empire’ once and for all. By this stage, the empire consisted of the province of Morea and Constantinople only. Emperor Constantine XI and the 8,000 men defending the city fought bravely against overwhelming odds but on May 29, 1453, Constantinople finally fell.Conclusion The Byzantine Empire survived for nearly 1,125 years.

Byzantine Empire became the center of civilization that sealed Greek and Roman societies while Western Europe fell into the horrible times. Even though, it once was with Rome, it continued some of Rome’s patterns, they established its own form of civilization, but does not mean it was its own separate state. The Empire protected Western Europe’s belongings until barbarism declined. Many people and historians believe that without Byzantium to protect it, Europe would have faced Islamic invaders and would have lost. Though the western half of the Roman Empire crushed and fell in 476, the eastern half lived for 1,000 more years, producing a rich tradition of art, writings and knowledge and helping as a military buffer. But due to its over expansion of territory it was unable to keep up with the numerous rises of armies that threatened its exstanice and ultimately was the reason for the empire great end.

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Cause of the Fall of the Byzantine Empire. (2018, November 19). GradesFixer. Retrieved September 29, 2022, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/cause-of-the-fall-of-the-byzantine-empire/
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Cause of the Fall of the Byzantine Empire [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 Nov 19 [cited 2022 Sept 29]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/cause-of-the-fall-of-the-byzantine-empire/
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