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Byzantine Empire

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Rajveer Kaur

on 26 May 2014

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Transcript of Byzantine Empire

Byzantine Empire
Where was it?
Emperor Constantine
• Constructed New Rome (later named Constantinople)
➢ Allowed for the Roman Empire to survive for many more years in a new location, due to the Germanic invaders the Romans had no where to go.
• He was the first of the Roman Emperors to embrace Christianity and get baptized into the religion.
➢ He issued the Edict of Milan in 313 BCE, this legalized Christianity in the Roman Empire for the first time.
• Due to him being greatly in favor of Christianity, he is accredited with converting the Roman Empire into Christianity.
• Convened and took part in the first meeting of Christian churches, known as the Council of Nicea.

Role of Women
When compared to women in early societies, the women in the Byzantine Empire can relate in some ways more than others. When compared women from hunter-gatherer ages, women in both societies were responsible for the children, however women in the Byzantine Empire weren’t gathering food to survive. Women in the Byzantine Empire had much more in common with the majority of Greeks and Romans.
Role of Women
Role of Women
• Arranged marriages in the Byzantine Empire were the norm for all levels of society.
• Mothers were the head of the household and they were to protect their children’s interests.
• In some poorer levels of society, women might have worked in fields depending on the situation, however, for the majority women were kept inside the house.
• They were always accompanied when they left the house, whether it was with their husband, brother, or father.
• In this society, it wasn’t proper to sit with men at the table unless they were direct relatives; women often ate in separate rooms.
• Women were thought of as prisoners, they were kept confined and inconspicuous.
Influence of Women in Political Life
Women in the Byzantine Empire weren't allowed to express their thoughts on political matters much, these tasks were left to men who were thought to be more suited for the job. However, there were a handful of women who did rule and came to their power in certain situations. One of the most prominent women that did rule was Empress Irene.
Empress Irene
• Came to power when her husband died and her son, Constantine, was too young to rule, as he was only 10.
• She had ties to Greece, which would prove to be helpful when it came to resources, trading, and political affairs.
• Empress Irene is often referred to as her son’s co-ruler, however she had much more power than him.
• Even when her son became of age, she refused to step down and let him rule.
• She forced her armies to swear by an oath in which it was declared that they would never accept her son as their ruler as long as she was alive.
• She was a very persuading leader and knew what to do in order to get what she wanted.
• Women were very active in daily life, they could run businesses, participated in church, and could also take active roles in political affairs from time to time.
➢ Some women also acted as military commanders.
• Girls did learn to read and write when they were young, however all the advances learning opportunities were limited due to the majority of the working class being men.
➢ Girls were instead encouraged to develop their domestic skills in preparation for life after marriage.
• A female’s public life was much more restricted when compared to a male’s, women were expected to be soft spoken and more in the background.
By: Rajveer Kaur Sidhu
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