Byzantine Economy: The Collapse of a Medieval Powerhouse

From the first partition of the Roman Empire in 284, the Eastern or ‘Byzantine’ Empire as it came to be known, was an economic powerhouse. With an advanced state tax system and trade links reaching across Eurasia, the Byzantine economy maintained an important position into medieval times, projecting an image of great wealth and prestige. However, the 1204 Fourth Crusade proved to be a catastrophe, plunging Byzantium into an economic decline from which it never recovered.

Byzantine Economy: The Collapse of a Medieval Powerhouse

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