Constantine IV and Justinian II - Byzantine Empire
Welcome to Quatr.us Study Guides!

Constantine IV and Justinian

Constantine IV succeeded his father Constans II in 668 AD, with the Abbasids gradually taking over most of the eastern Roman Empire, and attempts to retake the western part ending in failure. Constantine IV was a strong and sensible emperor, who in 679 AD successfully defended Constantinople from its first Abbasid attack under the Caliph Mu'awiya. Constantine also tried to push back the Bulgars. He didn't succeed, and they established Bulgaria, which is still there today, but at least their settlement meant a lasting peace.

But Constantine IV died at 33, leaving his 16 year old son, Justinian, to succeed him. Justinian was smart and ambitious, but unfortunately, like his great-grandfather Heraclius, Justinian apparently suffered from mental illness. His paranoid persecutions led to a revolt in 695, and Justinian's nose was cut off and his tongue was slit before he was banished.

The new emperor, a mercenary soldier named Leontius, did nothing very well, and is remembered mainly for having lost Carthage to the Abbasids in 698. When that happened, his troops mutinied and replaced him with another soldier named Tiberius. Tiberius did pretty well, but then Justinian escaped and returned from exile, killing both Leontius and Tiberius. But Justinian was just as dangerous now as before, murdering and torturing people all the time, and in 711 AD he was killed, along with his 6-year-old son Tiberius. That ended the dynasty of Heraclius, and soon Anastasius II was the new emperor.

Learn by doing: making an icon
Go on to Anastasius II

Bibliography and further reading about Byzantine history:

More about Constantine III
The Abbasids
Go on to Anastasius II
Quatr.us home


Please help other teachers and students find us: link to this page from your class page.
Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
Sign up for more free articles and special offers in Quatr.us' weekly newsletter:
We will never share your e-mail address unless you allow us to do so. View our privacy policy. Easy unsubscribe links are provided in every email.
Check out our new ebook: Short and Simple: Ancient Greek Myths! - just out! Twenty-five easy to read, illustrated stories, from Pandora to Medea, Icarus, and the Trojan Horse (you can read these online as samples). Get it this week for just $14.99, five dollars off the regular price of $19.99.
Cite this page
  • Author: K.E. Carr
  • Title:
  • Site Name: Quatr.us Study Guides
  • Publisher: Quatr.us
  • Date Published:
Did you find what you needed? Ask your teacher to link to this page so other people can use it too! Send it in and win a Quatr.us "Great Page!" award!
Sign up for more free articles and special offers in Quatr.us' weekly newsletter:
We will never share your e-mail address unless you allow us to do so. View our privacy policy. Easy unsubscribe links are provided in every email.
Comment on This Article
Quatr.us is loading comments...
(Comments will appear after moderation, if they are kind and helpful. Feel free to ask questions, and we'll try to answer them.)
Cite this page
  • Carr, K.E. . Quatr.us Study Guides, . Web. 18 October, 2017
ADVERTISEMENT