SOLs for Byzantine Empire & Russia
WHI.7a Study Map for 7a: Constantinople
  • The capital of the Eastern Roman Empire was changed to Constantinople to provide political, economic, and military advantages.
WHI.7b Study Map for 7b Justinian
  • As the first to codify Roman law, Justinian provided the basis for the law codes of Western Europe.
WHI.7b Study Map: See 7b Above
  • Under Justinian, the Byzantine Empire reached its height in culture and prosperity.
WHI.7c Study Map for 7c Byzantine
  • Greek Orthodox Christianity and imperial patronage enabled the Byzantine Empire to develop a unique style of art and architecture.
  • Greek and Roman traditions were preserved in the Byzantine Empire.
WHI.7d Study Map For 7d East/West
  • The cultural and political differences between the eastern and western Roman Empire weakened the unity of the Christian Church and led to its division.

WHI.7e Study Map For 7e Influence
  • Byzantine civilization influenced Russian and Eastern European civilizations through its religion, culture, and trade.

Unit Vocabulary
Greco-Roman: blend of Greek, Roman, and Hellenistic cultures Link: Greco-Roman


Justinian: first to codify Roman law, Byzantine Empire reached its height in culture and prosperity under Justinian Justinian

Justinian’s Code: impacted European legal codes Code Excerpt

Icons: religious images Icons

Mosaics: used in public and religious places Link with examples: Mosaic

Hagia Sophia: Byzantine domed church Hagia Sophia

Pope: head of the Roman Catholic Church

Patriarch: head of the Eastern Church

St. Cyril: adopted the Greek alphabet to the Slavic languages St Cyril


Introductory Summary:
As heir to the western Roman empire, the Byzantine empire promoted a brilliant civilization that blended ancient Greek, Roman, and Christian influences with other traditions of the Mediterranean world. The emperor Justinian expanded the Byzantine empire, built magnificent buildings, and established a code of laws. A strong central government and a prosperous economy enabled the empire to survive for more than 1,000 years. Eventually, however, struggles over succession, court intrigues, and constant wars undermined its strength, and the Byzantine empire fell to Ottoman forces.

Russia was profoundly influenced by Byzantine culture. Trade between the two cultures first introduced Russia to Orthodox Christianity. Czars Ivan III and Ivan IV expanded the Russian empire and established a tradition of autocratic rule. The geography of Eastern Europe made it a cultural crossroads. During the Middle Ages, small kingdoms were frequently at war with one another. Without strong central governments, these kingdoms were often threatened by their larger neighbors. Many invasions and migrations contributed to the diversity and political turmoil of the region.

Byzantine Empire and Growth of Russia Interactive Maps: Click on the links next to the maps to hear the audio tours of the Byzantine Empire and Growth of Russia. (Source: Link for audio tour: Byzantine
Russia_Growth.jpg Link for audio tour: Russia

Web Inquiry: Begin by researching the history of the Byzantine Empire using this link. Byzantine

Byzantine Empire Powerpoint Click on the widget to download this powerpoint.
Justinian CodeJustinian_1.jpg


Map of Byzantine Empire in 565 at the Death of Justinian

Animated Map of Byzantine Empire Map
Webquest for the Byzantine Empire: The Byzantine Empire stood at the geographical and cultural centre of the European and Middle-Eastern world for more than one thousand years.This webquest explores the empire and its culture. Webquest Link

Outline of the history of the Byzantine Empire and Early Russia: This link to a textbook publisher's outline gives a good background to the topic. Outline
Review the topic using these links.1. Review Quiz Review2. Rags to Riches Game Rags Game3. Byzantine Battleship Battleship4. Flashcards, Matching, Concentration Activities5. Byzantine Empire Quiz #2 Quiz