Byzantine Empire

Out with the old Rome and in with the new

In 527, Emperor Justinian set out to make the Byzantine Empire as mighty as the ancient Roman Empire. He conquered lands in the West, including Athens Rome, and Carthage. He took the Roman laws and made them Easier to understand. This new set of laws became known as the Justinian code. Justinian’s wife Theodora played a large role in Justinian’s government. She encouraged Justinian to make laws that were fair to women. One law allowed parents to leave property to their daughters, before this change they could only leave property to their sons. The Byzantine Empire became known for it’s art. The Byzantine people filled churches with paintings and mosaics, or pictures made from small pieces of colored stone or glass. Constantinople was the largest city in Europe. The city dazzled visitors. Most people had never seen so many markets or so many beautiful buildings. One man wrote of the city”We knew not whether we were in heaven or on Earth.”

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