Bulgars

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Early Middle Ages – Dark Age Europe

By |2017-08-02T16:40:06+00:00August 2nd, 2017|History, Medieval|

Interior of Hagia Sophia The Early Middle Ages comes after the fall of Rome, about 400 AD. But all the way through the Early Middle Ages, European people still thought of themselves as living in the Roman Empire and being Romans. Even armies who had invaded by force thought they were Romans. Even armies who [...]

The Avars – Early Middle Ages

By |2018-03-21T15:11:55+00:00August 2nd, 2017|History, Medieval|

Grasslands of Central Asia - the steppe homeland of the Avars Ruled by the Rouran The Avars were a mostly Turkic group of people. We first hear of them living in Central Asia under the rule of the Rouran, in the 400s AD. The Chinese, who lived to their south-east, called the Avars the Juan-Juan. Like other Central [...]

Nicephorus and Leo – Byzantine history

By |2018-04-15T16:50:55+00:00August 2nd, 2017|History, Medieval|

Maybe the skull cup was something like this? Nicephorus deposed the Empress Irene in 802 AD and made himself emperor. He refused to pay tribute to the Islamic caliph, and therefore lost still more Roman territory to the Abbasids. On the other hand, he fought successfully for Greece against the Slavs and Bulgars, and negotiated with Charlemagne to recognize his claim to the [...]

Leo to Empress Irene – Byzantine History

By |2017-08-02T09:17:48+00:00August 2nd, 2017|History, Medieval|

Leo the Isaurian (ca. 720 AD, Louvre museum, Paris) When Justinian's assassin Philippicus turned out to be a worthless party animal, other Roman officials killed him. In 713 AD the people of Constantinople chose a court official named Anastasius II to be the next emperor. Anastasius (ann-ah-STAYS-yus) was a practical guy, with good ideas - but [...]

Constantine IV and Justinian II

By |2018-04-09T10:31:11+00:00August 2nd, 2017|History, Medieval|

Mu'awiya on a Sassanian-style coin Constantine IV took over as Roman Emperor when his father Constans II died, in 668 AD. It wasn't a great time to be emperor. The Abbasids were gradually taking over most of the eastern Roman Empire. Attempts to retake the western part all ended in failure. But Constantine IV was a strong and sensible [...]

Basil, Zoe, and the Armenian Dynasty

By |2017-08-01T16:42:13+00:00August 1st, 2017|History, Medieval|

Basil I (867-886 AD) Basil killed Bardas and took over as Roman Emperor in 867 AD. That started the Armenian Dynasty. People call it that because of Basil's Armenian ancestors. (Sometimes people call it the Macedonian Dynasty because Basil was born in Macedon.) Basil continued basically the same policies as Bardas had. He was nice to the Bulgars [...]