|Roman emperor in the East|
|Reign||18 January – 17 November 474|
|Coronation||17 November 473|
|Alongside|| Leo I (until 18 January)|
Zeno (from 9 February)
Glycerius (West, 473–474)
Julius Nepos (West, 474)
|Born||Summer 469 AD|
|Died||17 November 474 (aged 5)|
Leo II (Greek : Λέων, Leōn; 469 – 17 November 474 AD), nicknamed "the Younger" or "the Small" (Greek: ὁ μικρός, translit. ho Mikrós), was briefly Roman emperor in 474 when he was a child aged six or seven. He was the son of Zeno, the Isaurian general and future emperor, and Ariadne, a daughter of the emperor Leo I (r. 457–474), who ruled the eastern Roman empire. Leo II was made co-emperor with his grandfather Leo I on 17 November 473, and became sole emperor on 18 January 474 after Leo I died of dysentery. His father Zeno was made co-emperor by the Byzantine Senate on 29 January and they co-ruled for a short time before Leo II died ten month laters, probably on 17 November.
Leo II was born in 469, the son of Zeno, an Isaurian general under Leo I, and Ariadne, the daughter of then emperor Leo I.He was the maternal grandson of Emperor Leo I and Empress Verina. Leo II was made caesar in late 472 and then augustus in 17 November 473, and made him co-emperor alongside his grandfather. He was crowned at the Hippodrome of Constantinople, and the ceremony was presided over by the Ecumenical Patriarch. He was also appointed as the sole consul for 474 around this time. When Leo I died of dysentery on 18 January 474, Leo II ascended the throne as sole augustus. Some weeks later, the Byzantine Senate made his father Zeno co-augustus under Leo II, as Leo II was too young to sign official documents. Leo II died soon after, on 17 November 474, at the age of 5, leaving Zeno as the sole emperor.
His death having occurred so soon after he became emperor has led to speculation among some modern scholars that he was poisoned by his mother Ariadne so that Zeno could ascend to the throne. However no contemporary sources raised this suggestion, even though Zeno was unpopular, thus it is considered likely that Leo II's death was natural, especially when the high child mortality rate of the time is considered.Victor of Tonona, a 6th-century chronicler, says that Leo II did not actually die, but was rather taken by Ariadne and hidden at a monastery. This is very likely a confusion with Basiliscus, the son of the Byzantine commander Armatus. Basiliscus was crowned caesar in 476 and was almost executed in 477 after his father was murdered by Zeno, but was saved by Ariadne. The confusion likely stems from the fact that Basiliscus was renamed Leo in order to avoid association with the usurper who rose against Zeno.
Zeno was vastly unpopular, due to a lack of dynastic prestige, with his only familial ties to the imperial throne being his marriage to Ariadne, the daughter of Leo I, and through his now-dead son Leo II. Additionally, because he was an Isaurian, he was seen as a foreigner by the Byzantine elite, and the treasury was empty on his ascension.Zeno's sole rule was opposed by the Leonid dynasty, with Verina, the widow of Leo I, proclaiming her brother Basiliscus as emperor in January 475. Zeno fled, and for 20 months Basiliscus ruled before Zeno returned and retook the throne. Zeno's rule was marked by constant unrest, and it was only through cunning and bribery that he managed to rule for 17 years, until his death on 9 April 491.
Anastasius I "Dicorus" was a Byzantine emperor from 491 to 518. He made his career as a government administrator. He came to the throne at the age of 61 after being chosen by the wife of his predecessor, Zeno. His religious tendencies caused tensions throughout his reign. He is often recognized as the first Byzantine emperor.
The 470s decade ran from January 1, 470, to December 31, 479.
Leo I was Eastern Roman emperor from 457 to 474. He was a native of Dacia Aureliana near historic Thrace. Sometimes, he is called Leo the Great, probably to distinguish him from his young grandson and co-augustus Leo II.
Flavius Zeno was Eastern Roman emperor from 474 to 475 and again from 476 to 491. Domestic revolts and religious dissension plagued his reign, which nevertheless succeeded to some extent in foreign issues. His reign saw the end of the Western Roman Empire following the deposition of Romulus Augustus and the death of Julius Nepos, but he contributed much to stabilising the Eastern Empire.
Flavius Basiliscus was Eastern Roman emperor from 475 to 476. A member of the House of Leo, he came to power when Emperor Zeno was forced out of Constantinople by a revolt.
Aelia Verina was the Empress consort of Leo I of the Byzantine Empire. She was a sister of Basiliscus. Her daughter Ariadne was Empress consort of first Zeno and then Anastasius I. Verina was the maternal grandmother of Leo II.
Procopius Anthemius was a politician of the Eastern Roman Empire, son of Western Roman Emperor Anthemius.
The Leonid dynasty produced five Roman emperors during Late Antiquity, reigning over the Roman Empire from 457 to 518. The dynasty's patriarch was Leo I, who was made Roman emperor in 457. Leo's daughter Ariadne became empress and mother to an emperor, and her two husbands were themselves each made emperor in turn. Another relative whose name does not survive of Leo I or his wife Verina married the future augustus Julius Nepos, the last emperor in the western Roman Empire. The dynasty of Leo succeeded the preceding Valentinianic dynasty and Theodosian dynasty whose family trees were conjoined and ruled concurrently. Besides Julius Nepos, who administered no more than a rump state the Roman province of Dalmatia in the western empire during the fall of the west, the dynasty's emperors governed the eastern empire.
Flavius Illus was a Byzantine general, who played an important role in the reigns of the Byzantine Emperors Zeno and Basiliscus.
Flavius Armatus, also known as Harmatius, was a Byzantine military commander, magister militum under Emperors Leo I, Basiliscus and Zeno, and consul. He was instrumental in the rebellion of Basiliscus against Zeno, and in his subsequent fall.
Flavius Marcianus was a member of the Leonid dynasty and a usurper against Emperor Zeno in 479.
Aelia Ariadne was Eastern Roman Empress as the wife of Zeno and Anastasius I. She is venerated as a saint in the Eastern Orthodox Church, with her feast day falling on August 22.
Aelia Zenonis was Eastern Roman empress as the wife of Basiliscus. Her ancestry is unknown.
Leontius was a general of the Eastern Roman Empire and claimant to the throne who led a rebellion against emperor Zeno in 484–488.
The Isaurian War was a conflict that lasted from 492 to 497 and that was fought between the army of the Eastern Roman Empire and the rebels of Isauria. At the end of the war, Eastern Emperor Anastasius I regained control of the Isauria region and the leaders of the revolt were killed.
Leontia was the daughter of the Eastern Roman Emperor Leo I.
Basiliscus was the only son of the East Roman (Byzantine) military commander Armatus and briefly caesar of the East Roman Empire in 476–477/8. In later life, he became a priest and finally bishop of Cyzicus.
The history of the Eastern Roman Empire (324–1453) is generally considered to fall into three distinct eras:
The Eastern Roman Empire was ruled by the House of Leo from AD 457, the accession of Leo I, to 518, the death of Anastasius I. The rule of the Leonid dynasty coincided with the rapid decline, collapse and eventual fall of the Western Roman Empire. Following the end of the Western Empire, Emperor Zeno abolished the position of Western Roman Emperor and declared himself the sole Roman Emperor. The Eastern Roman Empire would come to last for several more centuries, and subsequent dynasties would invest large amounts of resources in attempts to retake the western provinces.
Candidus Isaurus was an Eastern Roman historian. His work, written in Greek, is known only from fragments.
Leo II (emperor)Born: 469 Died: 17 November 474
| Eastern Roman emperor |
| Roman consul |