There are many untold stories in this world. Watch the 1st ep of the 10-part web series, The Strain: Under Siege...
Runtime: 2 minutes
The Strain: Under Siege - Byzantine Empire under the Heraclian dynasty - Netflix
The Byzantine Empire was ruled by emperors of the dynasty of Heraclius between 610 and 711. The Heraclians presided over a period of cataclysmic events that were a watershed in the history of the Empire and the world in general. At the beginning of the dynasty, the Empire was still recognizable as the Eastern Roman Empire, dominating the Mediterranean and harbouring a prosperous Late Antique urban civilization. This world was shattered by successive invasions, which resulted in extensive territorial losses, financial collapse and plagues that depopulated the cities, while religious controversies and rebellions further weakened the Empire. By the dynasty's end, a very different state had emerged: medieval Byzantium, a chiefly agrarian, military-dominated society that was engaged in a lengthy struggle with the Muslim Caliphate. However, this state was also far more homogeneous, being reduced to its mostly Greek-speaking and firmly Chalcedonian core territories, which enabled it to weather these storms and enter a period of stability under the successor Isaurian Dynasty. The Heraclian dynasty was named after the general Heraclius the Younger, who, in 610, sailed from Carthage, overthrew the usurper Phocas, and was crowned Emperor. At the time, the Empire was embroiled in a war with the Sassanid Persian Empire, which in the next decade conquered the Empire's eastern provinces. After a long and exhausting struggle, Heraclius managed to defeat the Persians and restore the Empire, only to lose these provinces again shortly after to the sudden eruption of the Muslim conquests. His successors struggled to contain the Arab tide. The Levant and North Africa were lost, while in 674–678, a large Arab army besieged Constantinople itself. Nevertheless, the state survived and the establishment of the Theme system allowed the imperial heartland of Asia Minor to be retained. Under Justinian II and Tiberios III the imperial frontier in the East was stabilized, although incursions continued on both sides. The latter 7th century also saw the first conflicts with the Bulgars and the establishment of a Bulgarian state in formerly Byzantine lands south of the Danube, which would be the Empire's chief antagonist in the West until the 11th century.
The Strain: Under Siege - Wars with the Bulgars - Netflix
With the Saracen threat averted, the Byzantines turned their attention to the west, where the Bulgars were encroaching on Imperial territory. In 680, Constantine IV launched a naval expedition to drive them back — the expedition failed and the Bulgars grew even bolder. Unable to stop them by force, Constantine settled for a humiliating, but not disastrous treaty whereby “protection” money had to be paid to the Bulgar King. The greatest implication of this treaty was that Byzantium would no longer have to worry about the Bulgars for the rest of Constantine's reign.
The Strain: Under Siege - References - Netflix