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Theodora had kept the empire together, but it was deeply scarred. The Plague had killed a quarter of the citizens and imperial revenues were in dire straits. In Italy, the Gothic tribes had rebelled again under the united leadership of Totila, while the disorganized Romans failed to mount an effective defense. Italy quickly fell back into Gothic hands, and even when Justinian sent back Belisarius, he could barely raise an army and didn't have the money to support his few conquests. Eventually he had to be recalled to defend Constantinople, and Rome was lost forever. A similar rebellion occurred in Africa, but was mercifully quelled. And then Theodora died. Justinian wept at her casket. He refused to remarry and designated a nephew-in-law as his successor. Even in mourning, he managed to organize a defense against Persian aggression and reorganize the Empire's tax system to bring revenue back into the coffers he'd drained for grand monuments and expensive wars. As his final tribute to Theodora, he attempted to heal the divide between Monophysite and Orthodox Christians, which had been one of her life goals. He went about it by pressuring the Pope to join him in condemning the Nestorian religious leaders who'd championed monophysite beliefs at the Council of Chalcedon. The Pope reluctantly agreed, but as he feared, it did not heal the divide in the east and only created new controversy in the west.
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*Music by Demetori: http://bit.ly/1AaJG4H
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*Music by Sean and Dean Kiner: http://bit.ly/1LBy9zh
Tagged under: Justinian,Theodora,Emperor Justinian,Empress Theodora,Death Theodora,Theodora Death,Monophysite,Nestorian,Orthodox,Christian,Christianity,Totila,King Totila,Belisarius,Italy,Rome,Gothic,Gothic Italy,Ostrogoths,Ostrogothic,Ostrogoth,Italian Rebellion,African Rebellion,Italy Rebellion,Africa Rebellion,Council Chalcedon,Chalcedon,Christian Heresy,Christian Orthodoxy,Extra Credits,Extra History,Daniel Floyd,James Portnow
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