The Lost World of Byzantium is a historical survey of the Byzantine Empire from the time of Constantine to the conquest of Constantinople in 1453 by the Ottomans. The narrative is organized into chapters focused around particular representative figures or key events, including the transition from paganism to Christianity (“Twilight of the Gods”); the campaign of Justinian (526–65) to restore the historical Roman Empire (“Outpost of Empire”); the struggle of Heraclius (610–41) against the Sassanids prior to the arrival of the Arabs (“The Deluge”); the religious environment and administrative adjustments that helped ensure the existence of the new shrunken empire (“A World Transformed”); Photius, the Patriarch of Constantinople known to the West mostly because of his account of his library (“The Conquest of the North”); the rise of the Phokas clan in the tenth century and their campaign against the Arabs in the East (“Paths of Glory”); the empire's resurgence...

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