Fall of the Roman Empire

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Re: Fall of the Roman Empire

Postby Appius Claudius Tuscus » Wed Sep 14, 2016 12:32 am

Salvete, quirites -

I had a friend once who was of the opinion that the Empire never fell - Republic became Empire (Principate, then Dominate), Empire became Western and Eastern, Western lapsed, Eastern became Byzantine, was interrupted (3rd Crusade, I believe), was restored, and then by conquest was inherited by the Turks, whose empire later became a republic (Republic of Turkey) once again.

We don't usually think about that Turkish inheritance of the Byzantine territory and power as a "continuation"! It's an interesting idea; although I don't buy it. For him, power and influence and territory mattered more than labels (Byzantine or Carolingian) or cultures.

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Re: Fall of the Roman Empire

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Wed Sep 14, 2016 10:36 am

I would also argue that the Empire never fell.
But the Ottomans did not succeed the Byzantine Empire, although one of the titles of the sultan of Constantinople was "Emperor (basileus) of the Romans". The Ottomans actually succeed the Caliphate. The Eastern Roman Empire was succeeded by Russia. Another name of Moscow is Tertia Roma (Constantinople being called Nova Roma). In 1472 Ivan I the Great married the niece of the last Byzantine Emperor, Sophia Palaiologa. She and her father had escaped the Fall of Constantinople. The dynasty was therefore continued in Moscow and Ivan the Great was crowned as Eastern Emperor and took the title Caesar (= tsar).

Although the Turks claimed to be successors of Rome at the beginning, these claims were soon abandoned and they styled themselves as successor of the Abbassid caliphate. Byzantine culture and the Byzantine dynasty were continued in Moscow.
The Western Sacrum Romanum Imperium was unaffected by the fall of Constantinople. But the escape of Byzantine philosophers to Florence triggered the Renaissance in the West, which ended the Middle Ages and started Modernity.
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Re: Fall of the Roman Empire

Postby Marcus Minucius Audens » Wed Sep 14, 2016 4:08 pm

My thanks to Master Lupus for the further historical comments, which support my view that the Roman Empire never fell, but rather only changed over time. Of course, there were battles in those times which seemed to devestate the situation at the time, but the bulk of the empire's people still remained, although under another name, and the takeover of a conqueror did not erase the beliefs of a people. Right up to the Fall of Constantinople and way afterwards people saw themselves as Roman, and although the Muslim Conquest may have been viewed in history as a fall, I believe that such a belief remained in the people for many years. Many people escaped the carnage and the disaster of the Muslim conquest, just as many escaped modern wars, to continue thier lives and beliefs in more frendly surroundings. Master Lupus provides in his historical comments more clues to that very concept. I would imagine that a more detailed study of the subject period would reveal even more.

Respectfully Submitted;
Marcus Audens
Marcus Minucius Audens


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