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Timeline of the Byzantine Empire: 667 BC to 537

When referring to the Byzantine Empire, you will find that many people are referred to the part of the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages that spoke Greek. The inhabitants were all positioned in the capital of Constantinople at the time. In this article, you will encounter details regarding the Empire, which lasted from 667 BC to 1453.

In 667 BC, the ancient city of Byzantium was founded. In the future, it would become Constantinople and later what we know as Istanbul.

Between 509 BC to the 2nd century AD, the rise of the Roman Empire took place.

Between 235 and 284, what is referred to as the “crisis of the 3rd century” occurs. This event, which is also known as the “Military Anarchy” or the “Imperial Crisis” is characterized by the decline and close faltering of the Roman Empire. All of this was caused by three crises that happened at the same time. This involved an external invasion, civil war, and a failure of the economy. The modifications pertaining to the religion, economy, society, and other institutions were so drastic , a distinct time period division was created, where the classical world started to ease into the early medieval time period.

In 292, the reforms of Diocletian take place.

In 330, Constantine deems Byzantium as part of his capital (known as Nova Roma). In later years, the region is renamed to Constantinople, which translates into The City of Constantine. This takes place in 337 after his death. The city would stand as the capital of the Byzantine Empire (with the exception of ½ a century) for more than 1,000 years.

In 395, the Empire is indefinitely split into two halves: western and eastern. All of this is experienced after the death of Theodosius I. Also known as Theodosius the Great, he served as the Roman Emperor from 379 to 395. It was he who would mark the last emperor to rule over both the Eastern and Western Roman Empire. Theodosius is also attributed with making Christianity as the official religion of the state of the Roman Empire.

In 527, Justinian I is crowned the “emperor” of the Roman Empire and often linked with a restoration of the land. He served as the Eastern Roman Emperor from 527 until he passed away in 565. He was seen as the second member of the Justinian Dynasty, where he took over following his uncle, Justin I. In the world of Eastern Orthodox Christians, he is considered a saint.

In 529 (April 7th), the Codex Justinianus is transmitted amongst the people. Also known as Corpus Juris Civilis (Body of the Civil Law), the collection of fundamental works in jurisprudence was issued from 529 to 534 and was associated with Justinian I.

Between 532 and 537, Justinian orders the construction of the church of Hagia Sophia.

In Part 2 of the “Timeline of the Byzantine Empire,” you will learn further accomplishments linked to Justinian, as well as the origins of the Vandals and the Ostrogoths.