The rise of the Seljuk Turks and the problems of the Eastern Empire

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  • Created by: LShan261
  • Created on: 09-04-15 13:00

Division of the Muslim world by 1095

  • 2 divisions = Sunni and Shia --> very bitter divide
  • Sunni Muslim
    • Believe Abu Bakr was true successor
    • Based in Baghdad & controlled Asia Minor
    • 90% of Muslim population --> 940 million
    • known as Abbasid
  • Shia Muslim
    • Believe Ali Amir was true successor
    • Based in Cairo & controlled Egypt
    • 10% of Muslim population --> 120 million
    • known as Fatamid
  • 969 = Fatamids broke free from Abbasid control and took charge of Egypt and Palestine incl. Jerusalem --> v.hard for xian pilgrims. 
  • 1009 = Caliph Hakim (Fatamid ruler) ended xian tolerance and ordered destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre --> other Fatamid rulers tried to restore relations with Xians
  • 1040s = rise of the Seljuk Turks --> moved into Iraq took advantage of weak Abbasid power
  • 1059 = forced Abbasid family out of power --> time of lawlessness
  • 1094 = Power vacuum = "This year is called the year of death of caliphs and commanders" - Arabic writer, Ibn Taghribirdi (Hillenbrand)
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Impact of Seljuk Turks on the Muslim World

  • Weakening of Abbasid power --> lost land to the Seljuk Turks e.g. Iraq
  • Increased power across Eastern Muslim world --> threat to Shia
  • Division of Muslim world = Turkish Amirs vs. Seljuk Atabegs
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Impact of Seljuk Turks on the Byzantine Empire

  • 1071 = Battle of Manzikert (Asia Minor) --> crushed the Byzantine army
  • 1071 = Seljuk Turks moved into the Byzantine Empire --> taking land 60 miles from Constantinople (Capital of Byzantium)
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How had Alexios become Byzantine Emperor?

  • Family ties --> previous emperor = Isaac I (Alexios' Uncle)
  • Deception --> family helped him sieze Byzantine Empire from Nicephorus III
  • Seljuk Turks = Battle of Manzikert 1071 --> Romanos IV (previous emperor) captured by the Seljuk army
  • Military performance 1068-1081 = served previous emperors --> reputation & support
    • Romanus VI
    • Michael VIII
    • Nicephorus III
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Problems of the Byzantine Empire 1050-1095?

  • North Pagan tribes crossed river Danube in the 1050s. --> forced Byzantium to let them settle
  • South = Seljuks controlled majority of Anatolia by 1077 --> declared it theirs and renamed Sultanate of Rum --> ruined stable border
  • West -
    • 1015 --> Byzantine lands in Italy taken by the Normans
    • 1071  --> Robert Guiscard (Norman leader) captured Bari (last Byzantine city in Italy)
    • 1081 --> Robert plan full-scale invasion of Byzantine lands in the Balkans
  • 1054 --> Great Schism --> East and West churches split
  • 1071 --> Battle of Manzikert
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