|Emperor of the Romans|
|Co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire|
|Reign||706–711(alongside Justinian II)|
St. Mary's Church in Blachernae, Constantinople
|Mother||Theodora of Khazaria|
|with Constantine III as co-emperor, 613–641|
|with Heraklonas as co-emperor|
|with Tiberius and Constans II as co-emperors (September/October 641 – September/October 641)|
|with Constantine IV (654–668), Heraclius and Tiberius (659–668) as co-emperors|
|with Heraclius and Tiberius (668–681), and Justinian II (681–685) as co-emperors|
|Justinian II||685–695, 705–711|
|with Tiberius as co-emperor, 706–711|
Justinian dynasty and Phocas
Twenty Years' Anarchy
Tiberius (Greek : Τιβέριος, Tiberios; 705–711) was the son of Emperor Justinian II and Theodora of Khazaria. He served as co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire with his father Justinian II, from 706–711. Both were killed in 711, when Bardanes led a rebellion which marched on Constantinople. After Tiberius' death, two different individuals impersonated him, with one, named Bashir, going on to be hosted by Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik, the Umayyad Caliph, before his lie was discovered and he was crucified.
In 705, Justinian II, who had previously been emperor of the Byzantine Empire from 685–695, but had been usurped by Leontios, used a vast army of Khazars, Bulgars, and Slavs to retake the throne from Tiberios III, who had in turn overthrown Leontios.While Justinian led troops into the Byzantine Empire, he left his wife, Theodora of Khazaria, behind in Bulgaria. While there, she gave birth to Tiberius. Once Justinian had consolidated his hold on the throne, he sent for his wife and his newly born son. When they arrived in Constantinople in 706, Theodora was crowned Augusta , and Tiberius was made co-emperor. In 710, when Pope Constantine visited Constantinople, he was welcomed by the Byzantine Senate and the young co-emperor Tiberius, before Constantine went on to meet Justinian II.
In 711, the Theme of Cherson rebelled against Justinian II, led by an exiled general by the name of Bardanes. The rebels resisted a counter-attack, before the forces sent to attack the rebels themselves joined the rebellion.The rebels marched on the capital, Constantinople, and proclaimed Bardanes as Emperor Philippicus. During this time, Justinian II had been traveling to Armenia, and thus did not arrive in Constantinople in time to defend it, but only after it had fallen. He was arrested, and then executed outside the city in December 711. His head was kept by Bardanes as a trophy. Upon hearing the news of his death, Anastasia, his mother, took Tiberius, at this time six years old, to St. Mary's Church in Blachernae, for sanctuary. He was pursued by men sent by Bardanes, who dragged him from the altar and murdered him outside of the church.
Two separate individuals later arose claiming to be Tiberius: one in 715 during the Siege of Constantinople by the Arabs; and another in 737.The second impostor, a man by the name of Bashir, plotted with a blind man named Theophantus. They arranged that Theophantus would go to Sulayman ibn Hisham, an Arab general, and son of the Ummayad caliph Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik, and inform him that he knew the location of Tiberius, who was actually Bashir himself. Sulayman believed Theophantus and instructed him to bring Bashir to him, which Theophantus agreed to do in exchange for money. Theophantus then delivered Bashir to Sulayman, whereupon Bashir denied being Tiberius profusely, so as to make Sulayman certain that he really was Tiberius. After many promises of safety and reward were given, he "confessed" that he was Tiberius. Sulayman immediately wrote to his father, Hisham, who instructed him to dress the false Tiberius in royal clothes and to have him pass through all major cities in procession. Bashir then went first to Edessa, and then the other major cities. After this, he went to Hisham, who received him with honor. Bashir stayed with Hisham, sending ambassadors to Constantinople to proclaim that Tiberius was still alive, and allied with the Umayyad. This news frightened the Byzantines, especially Emperor Leo III. However, Bashir's deception was eventually revealed, and he was crucified in Edessa.
Tiberius can be found on coins issued during the second reign of Justinian II (705–711). During Justinian II's first reign (686–695), the first coins to bear a depiction of Jesus Christ on the obverse were minted. During his second reign, Tiberius was featured on the reverse of the coins, alongside Justinian II. On the reverse, Tiberius and Justinian II both wear crowns, loros , and chlamys , and hold cross potents in their hands. The legend of the reverse reads: "Domini Nostri Iustinianus et Tiberius Perpetui Augusti", meaning "Our Lords Justinian and Tiberius, the Eternal Emperors".
|Ancestors of Tiberius (son of Justinian II)|
Leo III the Isaurian, also known as the Syrian, was the Byzantine emperor from 717 until his death in 741 and founder of the Isaurian dynasty. He put an end to the Twenty Years' Anarchy, a period of great instability in the Byzantine Empire between 695 and 717, marked by the rapid succession of several emperors to the throne. He also successfully defended the Empire against the invading Umayyads and forbade the veneration of icons.
Maurice was Byzantine Emperor from 582 to 602. A prominent general, Maurice fought with success against the Sasanian Empire. After he became Emperor, he brought the war with Sasanian Persia to a victorious conclusion. Under him the Empire's eastern border in the South Caucasus was vastly expanded and, for the first time in nearly two centuries, the Romans were no longer obliged to pay the Persians thousands of pounds of gold annually for peace.
Justin II was Eastern Roman Emperor from 565 to 574. He was the husband of Sophia, nephew of Justinian I and the Empress Theodora, and was therefore a member of the Justinian Dynasty. His reign was marked by war with the Sassanid Empire, and the loss of the greater part of Italy. He presented the Cross of Justin II to Saint Peter's, Rome.
Justinian II, surnamed the Rhinotmetos or Rhinotmetus, was the last Byzantine Emperor of the Heraclian dynasty, reigning from 685 to 695 and again from 705 to 711. Justinian II was an ambitious and passionate ruler who was keen to restore the Roman Empire to its former glories, but he responded brutally to any opposition to his will and lacked the finesse of his father, Constantine IV. Consequently, he generated enormous opposition to his reign, resulting in his deposition in 695 in a popular uprising, and he only returned to the throne in 705 with the help of a Bulgar and Slav army. His second reign was even more despotic than the first, and it too saw his eventual overthrow in 711, abandoned by his army who turned on him before killing him.
Constantine Heraclius, commonly known by the diminutive Heraklonas or Herakleonas, or rarely, Heraclius II, was the son of Heraclius and his niece Martina. His father had stipulated in his will that both of his sons should rule jointly upon his death. Heraclius also specified that his wife, Martina, was to be called "Mother and Empress" insofar as she might have influence at court as well. The emperor Heraclius died in February 641 from edema. When Martina did make the late Emperor's will public she faced staunch resistance to her playing any active role in government, but both Heraklonas and Constantine III were proclaimed joint-emperors in February 641 without incident. After Constantine died of tuberculosis in April/May 641, Heraklonas became sole emperor, under the regency of his mother due to his young age. He reigned from April/May – September/October 641, when he was overthrown by Valentinus, a general and usurper of Armenian extract, who installed Constans II, the son of Constantine III. Valentinus had Heraklonas' nose cut off, then exiled him to Rhodes, where he is believed to have died in the same year.
Philippikos or Philippicus was Emperor of the Byzantine Empire from 711 to 713.
Theodosius III or Theodosios III was Byzantine Emperor from c. May 715 to 25 March 717. Before rising to power and seizing the throne of the Byzantine Empire, he was a tax collector in Adramyttium. In 715, the Byzantine Navy and the troops of the Opsician Theme revolted against Byzantine Emperor Anastasios II, acclaiming the reluctant Theodosius as Emperor Theodosius III. Theodosius led his troops to Chrysopolis and then Constantinople, seizing the city in November 715, although Anastasios would not surrender until several months later, accepting exile into the monastery in return for safety. Many themes refused to recognize the legitimacy of Theodosius, believing him to be a puppet of the Opsicians, especially the Anatolics and the Armeniacs under their respective strategoi (generals) Leo the Isaurian and Artabasdos.
Leontios or Leontius was Byzantine emperor from 695 to 698. Little is known of his early life, other than that he was born in Isauria in Asia Minor. He was given the title of patrikios, and made strategos of the Anatolic Theme under Emperor Constantine IV. He led forces against the Umayyads during the early years of Justinian II's reign, securing victory and forcing the Umayyad caliph, Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan, to sue for peace.
Tiberius III was Byzantine emperor from 15 February 698 to 10 July or 21 August 705 AD. Little is known about his early life, other than that he was droungarios, a mid-level commander, of the Cibyrrhaeots, and that his birth name was Apsimar. In 696, Tiberius was part of an army led by John the Patrician sent by Byzantine Emperor Leontios to retake the city of Carthage in the Exarchate of Africa, which had been captured by the Arab Umayyads. After seizing the city, this army was pushed back by Umayyad reinforcements and retreated to the island of Crete; some of the officers, fearing the wrath of Leontios, killed John and declared Tiberius emperor. Tiberius swiftly gathered a fleet, sailed for Constantinople, and deposed Leontios. Tiberius did not attempt to retake Byzantine Africa from the Umayyads, but campaigned against them along the eastern border with some success. In 705 former Emperor Justinian II, who had been deposed by Leontios, led an army of Slavs and Bulgars to Constantinople, and after entering the city secretly, deposed Tiberius. Tiberius fled to Bithynia, but was captured several months later and beheaded between August 705 and February 706. His body was initially thrown into the sea, but was later recovered and buried in a church on the island of Prote.
Busir or Bazir was the Khazar khagan in the late 7th century and early 8th century.
Maslama ibn Abd al-Malik was an Umayyad prince and one of the most prominent Arab generals of the early decades of the 8th century, leading several campaigns against the Byzantine Empire and the Khazar Khaganate. He achieved great fame especially for leading the second and last Arab siege of the Byzantine capital Constantinople.
The Second Arab siege of Constantinople in 717–718 was a combined land and sea offensive by the Muslim Arabs of the Umayyad Caliphate against the capital city of the Byzantine Empire, Constantinople. The campaign marked the culmination of twenty years of attacks and progressive Arab occupation of the Byzantine borderlands, while Byzantine strength was sapped by prolonged internal turmoil. In 716, after years of preparations, the Arabs, led by Maslama ibn Abd al-Malik, invaded Byzantine Asia Minor. The Arabs initially hoped to exploit Byzantine civil strife and made common cause with the general Leo III the Isaurian, who had risen up against Emperor Theodosius III. Leo, however, tricked them and secured the Byzantine throne for himself.
Theodora of Khazaria was Byzantine empress as the second wife of Justinian II. She was a sister of Busir, khagan of the Khazars, but their relation to other Khazar rulers such as Bihar, father of the future Empress Tzitzak, is unknown.
The Opsician Theme or simply Opsikion was a Byzantine theme located in northwestern Asia Minor. Created from the imperial retinue army, the Opsikion was the largest and most prestigious of the early themes, being located closest to Constantinople. Involved in several revolts in the 8th century, it was split in three after ca. 750, and lost its former pre-eminence. It survived as a middle-tier theme until after the Fourth Crusade.
Al-Mundhir ibn al-Ḥārith, known in Greek sources as (Flavios) Alamoundaros, was the king of the Ghassanid Arabs from 569 to circa 581. A son of Al-Harith ibn Jabalah, he succeeded his father both in the kingship over his tribe and as the chief of the Byzantine Empire's Arab clients and allies in the East, with the rank of patricius. Despite his victories over the rival Persian-backed Lakhmids, throughout Mundhir's reign his relations with Byzantium were lukewarm due to his staunch Monophysitism. This led to a complete breakdown of the alliance in 572, after Mundhir discovered Byzantine plans to assassinate him. Relations were restored in 575 and Mundhir secured from the Byzantine emperor both recognition of his royal status and a pledge of tolerance towards the Monophysite Church.
Heraclius was Byzantine co-emperor from 659 to 681. He was the son of Emperor Constans II and Fausta, who was elevated in 659, before his father departed for Italy. After the death of Constans Heraclius' brother, Constantine IV, ascended the throne as senior emperor. Constantine attempted to have both Heraclius and Tiberius removed as co-emperors, which sparked a popular revolt in 681. Constantine ended the revolt by promising to accede to the demands of the rebels, sending them home, but bringing their leaders into Constantinople. Once there, Constantine had them executed, then imprisoned Tiberius and Heraclius and had them mutilated, after which point they disappear from history.
Tiberius was Byzantine co-emperor from 659 to 681. He was the son of Constans II and Fausta, who was elevated in 659, before his father departed for Italy. After the death of Constans, Tiberius' brother Constantine IV, ascended the throne as senior emperor. Constantine attempted to have both Tiberius and Heraclius removed as co-emperors, which sparked a popular revolt, in 681. Constantine ended the revolt by promising to accede to the demands of the rebels, sending them home, but bringing their leaders into Constantinople. Once there, Constantine had them executed, then imprisoned Tiberius and Heraclius and had them mutilated, after which point they disappear from history.
The Twenty Years' Anarchy is a historiographic term used by some modern scholars for the period of acute internal instability in the Byzantine Empire marked by the rapid succession of several emperors to the throne between the first deposition of Justinian II in 695 and the ascent of Leo III the Isaurian to the throne in 717, marking the beginning of the Isaurian dynasty.
Heraclius was born between 667 and 685, and was the son, and second of two children, of Byzantine Emperor Constantine IV and his wife, Empress Anastasia.