Key Points

Shortly after the extended controversy over the byzantine Iconoclasm, the byzantine Empire would recoup under the Macedonian Dynasty, starting in 867 CE.The Macedonian empire saw the byzantine Renaissance, a time of raised interest in classical scholarship and the assimilation of classical motifs right into Christian artwork.The empire also expanded during this period, dominating Crete, Cyprus, and most that Syria.However, the Macedonian Dynasty likewise saw boosting dissatisfaction and also competition for land amongst nobles in the design template system, which weakened the government of the emperors and also led to instability.

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Byzantine Renaissance

The time throughout the Macedonian dynasty when art, literature, science, and also philosophy flourished.

Emperor Basil I

Shortly after the extended dispute over iconoclasm, which an ext or less finished (at least in the east) v the regent Theodora reinstating icon worship in 842 CE, Emperor Basil I founded a new dynasty, the Macedonian Dynasty, in 867 CE. Basil was born a simple peasant in the oriental theme the Macedonia; he increased in the royal Court, and usurped the royal throne indigenous Emperor Michael III (r. 842-867). In spite of his humble origins, he showed good ability in running the affairs of state, causing a revival of royal power and also a renaissance of oriental art. That was viewed by the Byzantines as one of their greatest emperors, and also the Macedonian empire ruled end what is related to as the most glorious and also prosperous era that the byzantine Empire.

It to be under this dynasty that the byzantine Empire would recover from its vault turmoil, and also become the most an effective state in the middle ages world. This was additionally a duration of cultural and artistic flowering in the byzantine world. The urban of the empire expanded, and also affluence spread across the provinces since of the new-found security. The population rose, and also production increased, stimulating new demand, while also helping to encourage trade. The iconoclast movement experienced a steep decline; the decline was valuable to the majesties who had softly suppressed iconoclasm, and to the reconciliation of the spiritual strife that had drained the imperial resources in the previous centuries.


Emperor Basil I. A explicate of byzantine Emperor Basil I, of the Macedonian Dynasty, ~ above horseback.

Macedonian Renaissance

The time the the Macedonian Dynasty’s ascendancy over the oriental Empire is sometimes called the byzantine Renaissance or the Macedonian Renaissance. A long duration of military struggle because that survival had recently dominated the life that the oriental Empire, however the Macedonians ushered in period when art and literature when again flourished. The classic Greco-Roman heritage of byzantium was main to the writers and also artists of the period. Byzantine scholars, many notably Leo the Mathematician, review the scientific and philosophical works of the ancient Greeks and also expanded top top them. Artists adopted their naturalistic format and complex techniques from old Greek and also Roman art, and also mixed them v Christian themes. Byzantine painting indigenous this period would have actually a solid influence top top the later on painters the the Italian Renaissance.

Political and spiritual Expansion

The Macedonian Dynasty likewise oversaw the expansion of the oriental Empire, which go on the offensive against its enemies. Because that example, Emperor Nikephoros II Phokas (who ruled from 912 CE-969 CE) pursued an aggressive policy of expansion. Before rising come the throne, that had conquered Crete native the Muslims, and also as emperor the led the conquest of Cyprus and most that Syria.

The Macedonian period also contained events of momentous spiritual significance. The counter of the Bulgarians, Serbs, and Rus’ to Orthodox Christianity permanently adjusted the spiritual map that Europe, and still impacts demographics today. Cyril and Methodius, two byzantine Greek brothers, contributed significantly to the Christianization that the Slavs, and in the process devised the Glagolitic alphabet, ancestor to the Cyrillic script.

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Throughout this period there was an excellent competition among nobles because that land in the theme system. Due to the fact that such governors could collect taxes and control the military pressures of your themes, they became independent of the emperors and also acted independently, weakening the authority of the emperors. They had tendency to rise taxes on tiny farmers in order to enrich themselves, thereby causing substantial dissatisfaction.