Religion

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  • The emperor was a priest-king who was considered the deputy of Jesus Christ on earth and his co-ruler.
  • The emperor had responsibility for both civil and religious law, in effect, uniting the religious and civil spheres of Byzantine society.
  • Christianity greatly influenced the artistic life of the Byzantines. Most Byzantine art, architecture, and literature was based on religious themes.
  • Many of the human subjects in Byzantine art were of saints or figures from the Bible.
  • As far back as the reign of Heraclius, Muslims had been threatening the empire.
  • Over time, Islam, pressure from migrating tribes, and internal conflict and corruption brought about the Byzantine Empire’s fall.
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