The Byzantium Empire

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Heroes_Witch_King

Hello.

I would like to know from the community, if any of you know a little bit more about the Byzantium Empire? Because I am really interested in learning more about it.
So, if you have any information about it, or have some images of what the soldiers were wearing, please do post here.

Thanks in advance.
 
I don't know much about the Byzantium Empire myself but in the history section of AOE II this is what it had about the Byzantines
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First step in learning more about the Byzantine Empire, is to stop calling it Byzantine Empire. Roman, or Eastern Roman Empire is its true name.

Byzantium was a colonial settlement of the Megarans and it has not much in relation with Constantinopolis. The West, those who came to power after the collapse of Western Roman Empire, that is the Germanic Holy Roman Empire along with the Papacy, tended to use Byzantium in, probably, a pejorative meaning.
 
Swordmaster said:
First step in learning more about the Byzantine Empire, is to stop calling it Byzantine Empire. Roman, or Eastern Roman Empire is its true name.

Byzantium was a colonial settlement of the Megarans and it has not much in relation with Constantinopolis. The West, those who came to power after the collapse of Western Roman Empire, that is the Germanic Holy Roman Empire along with the Papacy, tended to use Byzantium in, probably, a pejorative meaning.

Do you refer to Germany as Deutchland? Do you refer to all other countries by the names they use for themselves, (and using the characters they use)? If you're not writing it in Greek characters, don't lecture other people about Roman vs Byzantine.

Heroes_Witch_King said:
Hello.

I would like to know from the community, if any of you know a little bit more about the Byzantium Empire? Because I am really interested in learning more about it.
So, if you have any information about it, or have some images of what the soldiers were wearing, please do post here.

Thanks in advance.

Are you interested in any particular century?

Byzantine Soldiers in the Joshua Roll, early 10th century
A Byzantine Plaque with Scenes from the Book of Joshua, 2nd half of 10th century
The Portrait Illumination of Basil II, Byzantine, c.1017
A Byzantine Ivory Casket, early 11th century
A Byzantine Plaque of Saint Theodore as a soldier, 11th century
The Cynegetica of Pseudo-Oppian, Byzantine, 11th century
Turkic cavalry on a Byzantine Ivory Casket, 11-12th Centuries
Skylitzes Chronicle, Byzantine Italy, 11th-12th Centuries
Plates depicting the Byzantine hero, Digenis Akritas, 12th century

Druzhina
Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers
 
Druzhina said:
Swordmaster said:
First step in learning more about the Byzantine Empire, is to stop calling it Byzantine Empire. Roman, or Eastern Roman Empire is its true name.

Byzantium was a colonial settlement of the Megarans and it has not much in relation with Constantinopolis. The West, those who came to power after the collapse of Western Roman Empire, that is the Germanic Holy Roman Empire along with the Papacy, tended to use Byzantium in, probably, a pejorative meaning.

Do you refer to Germany as Deutchland? Do you refer to all other countries by the names they use for themselves, (and using the characters they use)? If you're not writing it in Greek characters, don't lecture other people about Roman vs Byzantine.

Still calling it Byzantine Empire is equal to calling "United States of America" as "WashingtonDC and the others". No need to keep doing the same mistake.
 
ancalimon said:
...
Still calling it Byzantine Empire is equal to calling "United States of America" as "WashingtonDC and the others". No need to keep doing the same mistake.

No, I call it the "United States of America" because I write in English. If I wrote in French I would call it Les Etats Unis. It is not a mistake. It is the language. There may be a language where it is called "WashingtonDC and the others", but I do not know it.

Druzhina
12th Century Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers
 
Druzhina said:
ancalimon said:
...
Still calling it Byzantine Empire is equal to calling "United States of America" as "WashingtonDC and the others". No need to keep doing the same mistake.

No, I call it the "United States of America" because I write in English. If I wrote in French I would call it Les Etats Unis. It is not a mistake. It is the language. There may be a language where it is called "WashingtonDC and the others", but I do not know it.

Druzhina
12th Century Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers

Eastern Roman Empire is English as well.
 
Most people call it the "byzantine empire" for historigraphical reasons, because there are a lot of changes to the eastern empire that happen after the western empire collapses.

First of all, eastern romans no longer think of themselves as "roman". Rome is out of their influence, so they begin to think of themselves as "greek". The europeans at the time called them "greek" and the later turks in anatolia called them "romans", but that's beside the point; they were culturally greek in their own eyes. The new "byzantine" ruling families were of greek (or therabouts) origin. They even used greek as their official language.

Secondly, they become more of a christian state than a loosely semi-polytheistic worship-whatever-you-want-as-long-as-it's-the-emperor state. Eastern orthodoxy as opposed to the fluidity of roman polytheism changes the nature of the byzantine empire, and shifts the focus of their foreign policy becomes strictly defensive rather than aggressive.

When Rome is lost to the western romans, the eastern empire's art changes, the way they organise government changes, and the way they interacts with the states around them changes. Similar to how we don't call Rome an "empire" pre-julius caesar, it's generally accepted that the Byzantine Empire was a different entity to the eastern roman empire.

Calling it the "Byzantine Empire" as opposed to something strictly accurate like the "Autocracy of Constantinople" is just about recognisability. We've been calling it the Byzantine Empire since at least the 1800s, so why bother changing it? Everyone knows what we're referring to.



Heroes_Witch_King said:
Hello.

I would like to know from the community, if any of you know a little bit more about the Byzantium Empire? Because I am really interested in learning more about it.
So, if you have any information about it, or have some images of what the soldiers were wearing, please do post here.

Thanks in advance.

I'm not familiar with specific modern writers on the Byzantines, but there are a lot of sources from the time which read like histories in and of themselves. You can't go wrong really - every modern book I've read so far is good in terms of historical backing, since there is such a wealth of writing from the time. Even wikipedia's decent. :razz:

Bear in mind that there are almost 1000 years of byzantine history. As a result you might get one book that mainly covers the period of a single dynasty, or another that only looks at their relations with a single state. I haven't seen many overview books that are thinner than the oxford dictionary.
 
jacobhinds said:
Most people call it the "byzantine empire" for historigraphical reasons, because there are a lot of changes to the eastern empire that happen after the western empire collapses.

First of all, eastern romans no longer think of themselves as "roman". Rome is out of their influence, so they begin to think of themselves as "greek". The europeans at the time called them "greek" and the later turks in anatolia called them "romans", but that's beside the point; they were culturally greek in their own eyes. The new "byzantine" ruling families were of greek (or therabouts) origin. They even used greek as their official language.

Secondly, they become more of a christian state than a loosely semi-polytheistic worship-whatever-you-want-as-long-as-it's-the-emperor state. Eastern orthodoxy as opposed to the fluidity of roman polytheism changes the nature of the byzantine empire, and shifts the focus of their foreign policy becomes strictly defensive rather than aggressive.

When Rome is lost to the western romans, the eastern empire's art changes, the way they organise government changes, and the way they interacts with the states around them changes. Similar to how we don't call Rome an "empire" pre-julius caesar, it's generally accepted that the Byzantine Empire was a different entity to the eastern roman empire.

Calling it the "Byzantine Empire" as opposed to something strictly accurate like the "Autocracy of Constantinople" is just about recognisability. We've been calling it the Byzantine Empire since at least the 1800s, so why bother changing it? Everyone knows what we're referring to.

They were not culturally Greek. They were heavily influenced and the language was an amalgam of Turkic, Greek, Persian, Latin, Armenian, Kurdish, Arabic. The Turks called them (everyone living in Anatolia including the Armenians, Perso Turkic people, etc) "Rum" but neighbours of Turks also called the Turks as Rum.
 
ancalimon said:
They were not culturally Greek.
jacobhinds said:
they were culturally greek in their own eyes. The new "byzantine" ruling families were of greek (or therabouts) origin. They even used greek as their official language.

Didn't say they were. but I should have elaborated on what "Greek" was at the time.


ancalimon said:
The Turks called them (everyone living in Anatolia including the Armenians) "Rum" but neighbours of Turks also called the Turks as Rum.

That was a remnant from pre-manzikert when most of anatolia was controlled by the byzantines. The name persisted but the meaning was still there - anatolia was still home to a lot of "byzantines", i.e. eastern orthodox christians and pre-turkish anatolians, even up until the ottoman beylik.
 
Druzhina said:
Do you refer to Germany as Deutchland? Do you refer to all other countries by the names they use for themselves, (and using the characters they use)? If you're not writing it in Greek characters, don't lecture other people about Roman vs Byzantine.

Why the agressiveness?

Calling it Roman Empire is of historical significance, not lingual. They did not stopped calling themselves as the Roman Empire, mind you, Greek language became an official language during the reign of Flavius Heraclius Augustus, way after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire. Tell me; even before the division of the empire, the capital was moved to Constantinople, why would the emperor or anyone else rename their own name country's name if they haven't lost their core?

"The barbarians are insisting that after losing the western part of our empire, we should change our empire's name to a petty settlement's one that was founded a thousand years ago."

Further moving on with historical significance, hell I even stumbled upon a letter of George III to the Ottoman Emperor, refering to the empire as "Eastern Empire". Don't you dare tell me on what I should lecture on and not before coming in with good evidence Druzhina. I don't care if modern day Greeks call the Eastern Roman Empire as the Byzantine Empire, their loss in understanding history.

An interesting note: For reasons unknown, we are still calling the Greeks as "Romans". Well at least the ones that came from Anatolia and the isles. Moreover, if they had been calling themselves as Byzantines, why did the Turks associate Romans with the Greeks but not the term "Byzantines"? Think on it please.
 
Ancalimon's right. The etymology of istanbul is kind of cloudy but it's reckoned it was from the short exchanges that happened between turks and greek traders.
Turk: where are these ships headed?
Greek: is tim polin ("to the city" i.e. to the only nearby settlement worth mentioning, you silly man)
Turk: is-tan-bul? Thanks mate.

The ottomans then proceded to call it Constantinople right up until the 1910s :razz:
 
Swordmaster said:
Druzhina said:
Do you refer to Germany as Deutchland? Do you refer to all other countries by the names they use for themselves, (and using the characters they use)? If you're not writing it in Greek characters, don't lecture other people about Roman vs Byzantine.

Why the agressiveness?

Calling it Roman Empire is of historical significance, not lingual. They did not stopped calling themselves as the Roman Empire, mind you, Greek language became an official language during the reign of Flavius Heraclius Augustus, way after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire. Tell me; even before the division of the empire, the capital was moved to Constantinople, why would the emperor or anyone else rename their own name country's name if they haven't lost their core?

"The barbarians are insisting that after losing the western part of our empire, we should change our empire's name to a petty settlement's one that was founded a thousand years ago."

Further moving on with historical significance, hell I even stumbled upon a letter of George III to the Ottoman Emperor, refering to the empire as "Eastern Empire". Don't you dare tell me on what I should lecture on and not before coming in with good evidence Druzhina. I don't care if modern day Greeks call the Eastern Roman Empire as the Byzantine Empire, their loss in understanding history.

An interesting note: For reasons unknown, we are still calling the Greeks as "Romans". Well at least the ones that came from Anatolia and the isles. Moreover, if they had been calling themselves as Byzantines, why did the Turks associate Romans with the Greeks but not the term "Byzantines"? Think on it please.

You can call it what you want, as long as you don't try to dictate to others.

Druzhina
Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers
 
jacobhinds said:
The ottomans then proceded to call it Constantinople right up until the 1910s :razz:

And occasionally Turks and Westerners alike assume it was always Istanbul from 1453 onward. That's what I was talking about - so he's not right. And if he wants to cite some proto-Turkic word that sounds vaguely like stanbul and claims it predates Byzantium, he can keep it to himself.
 
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