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How did the histories of the Byzantine Empire and Western Europe differ during the era of third

-wave civilizations?

Western Europe. Frankish Kingdoms. Roman Catholic Church. Holy Roman Empire.

Eastern Europe. Byzantine Empire. (Byzantium) Eastern Orthodox Catholic Church. (Orthodoxy) Constantinople.

Notice how Eastern Europe and Constantinople are not invaded. Western Europe and the old Roman Empire is destroyed. The dream is to rebuild it (Holy Roman Empire, Charlemagne) but they never are able to fully recreate the greatness of Rome.

How did the histories of the Byzantine Empire and Western Europe differ during the era of third-wave civilizations?

Western Europe collapsed politically in the fifth century, never to come together again as a single political entity, whereas Byzantium survived as a single political entity throughout the period.

How did the histories of the Byzantine Empire and Western Europe differ during the era of third-wave civilizations? The Byzantine emperor exerted greater control over the Orthodox Church. Caesaropapism defined the relationship between the Byzantine state and the Orthodox Church.

Western Europe had split control over the Roman Catholic church and the many separate and fragmented kingdoms.

Icon depicting the Emperor Constantine (centre) and the bishops.

How did the histories of the Byzantine Empire and Western Europe differ during the era of third-wave civilizations?
The Byzantine Empire maintained a prominent role in the long-distance trade networks of Eurasia throughout the period, whereas Western Europe’s role declined precipitously following the collapse of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, only to reengage with those trade networks after 1000.

Holy Roman Empire in 1000.

How did the histories of the Byzantine Empire and Western Europe differ during the era of third-wave civilizations?

After 1000, Western Europe’s
influence in the Mediterranean and in Eastern Europe expanded, while the influence of the Byzantine Empire contracted (especially in the Mediterranean basin) after 600 c.e.
The Siege of Constantinople (painted 1499).

The crusades changed Europe more than they changed the Holy Land. Increase in trade brought economic recovery and an end to the feudal system.

Map of the changes in borders of the Byzantine Empire.
The dates represented are 476 (Fall of the Roman Empire; Basiliscus deposed and Zeno restored), 550 (Justinian I's western reclamations; Ostrogothic Kingdom), 717 (Leo III reign; 2nd Arab siege), 867 (Basil I reign begins), 1025 (Basil II dies; Constantine VIII reign begins), 1095 (Alexius I Comnenus requests western aid against the Seljuk Turks), 1170 (Amalric I and Manuel I alliance), 1270 (Michael VIII riegn), and 1400 (Closing of the Byzantine–Ottoman Wars).

What accounts for the different historical trajectories of these two expressions of Christendom?

Constantine – Establishes Roman East Capital and unites Church and State.

The survival of a powerful imperial state in the Byzantine Empire resulted in greater state control over the Orthodox Church. Cultural differences also played a role. For instance, in the Eastern Orthodox Church, Greek became the language of religious practice instead of the Latin used in the Roman Catholic Church. Moreover, more so than in the West, Byzantine thinkers sought to formulate Christian doctrine in terms of Greek philosophical concepts. The Eastern Orthodox faith expanded into Eastern Europe when the Byzantine Empire was at its height, but it was driven from other regions, particularly in North Africa and the Near East, by the expansion of Islam. After 1000, the Roman Catholic tradition became the more expansive of the two expressions, as its influence spread into Islamic Spain, non-Christian northern Europe, and Orthodox Eastern Europe.

Vatican City – Later home of Roman Catholic Church.

Constantine I

Constantinople in Byzantine times Does it look like Rome? Port city on the edge of West & East. Great connections to trade from the East. Influenced by both Rome in the West and Islam in the East.

Today called Istanbul.

Interior view of the Hagia Sophia, showing Islamic elements on the top of the main dome. A former Eastern Orthodox Catholic Church. Then converted to a Muslim Mosque. Today it is a museum in Istanbul (then Constantinople).

Then above, Now below.

Hagia Sophia – Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey)

Restored section of Constantinople, protected the city from invasions from the East (Islamic) and West (Roman Catholic Crusaders).