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Byzantine Empire

noun
  1. the Eastern Roman Empire after the fall of the Western Empire in a.d. 476. Capital: Constantinople.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for byzantine empire

Byzantine Empire

noun
  1. the continuation of the Roman Empire in the East, esp after the deposition of the last emperor in Rome (476 ad). It was finally extinguished by the fall of Constantinople, its capital, in 1453See also Eastern Roman Empire
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

byzantine empire in Culture

Byzantine Empire

[(biz-uhn-teen, biz-uhn-teyen, bizan-tin)]

An empire, centered at Constantinople, that began as the eastern portion of the Roman Empire; it included parts of Europe and western Asia. As the western Roman Empire declined, the Byzantine Empire grew in importance, and it remained an important power in Europe until the eleventh century. The Byzantine Empire was conquered by Turkish forces in the fifteenth century.

The Byzantine emperor was an absolute ruler (see absolute monarchy), and the laws and customs associated with his empire were strict and complex. His rule was supported by the Christian Church in the region, which later became the independent Eastern Orthodox Church.

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Note

The word byzantine is often applied to a group of intricately connected and rigidly applied regulations or traditions, or to a complex bureaucracy that insists on formal requirements.

Note

Constantinople is called Istanbul today.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.