Byzantine, Ottoman, Incas and Aztecs, North American Indians

Some of Earliest Empires of this World, In this article we are going to take a brief introduction about Byzantine, Ottoman, Incas and Aztecs, and North American Indians.

The Byzantine Empire

Around 300 AD began the decline of the Roman Empire, and the Roman emperor Constantine moved his capital to Constantinople, now called Istanbul. It was here that he began establishing the Byzantine Empire one of the mighty earliest empires. Scholars came from all over Europe to study in Constantinople. Later, after the collapse of the remaining Roman Empire, the Byzantine Empire began to expand. Emperor Justinian-I regained most of the Roman Empire and brought it under the Byzantine control. Christianity became the state religion and developing from Constantinople, it spread into Europe. Art and trade flourished during this period even through the empire faced and warded off many attacks. Around 635 AD the Arabs began attacking the empire and by 640 they had captured most of the Middle East and African territories. With this began the downfall of the empire and it collapsed completely when Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1435.

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The Ottoman Empire

One of the earliest empires that ruled for a long period. The Ottoman Empire was founded by Turkish tribes with settled in modern day Turkey. The empire was named after the first Sultan called Osman. The Ottomans were basically Muslims but they allowed others religions to flourish in their empire. One of their most famous rulers was Suleiman-I. During his reign he reformed the legal and educational system of the empire reached its peak. The empire extended all along Northern Africa and Egypt in the South, the area between Italy, black sea, Persian Gulf and The Caspian Sea in the North and East. The borders of the empire was maintained with the help of skilled army of soldiers called ‘Janissaries’ and art, architecture, trading flourished in the period. Over the later years the regular attacks from the Russian in the East and Europeans in the North weakened the empire and it fell in the end of 19th Century.

The Incas and Aztecs

The Incas were American Indian who settled in the Cuzco valley, on the western coast of South America. By the year 1525 their empire extended for more than 3000 kilometers along the western coast. The population lived of farming on terraces built on the mountain sides. The Incas were expert builders and they built famous city of Machu Pichu. They were also good weaver and wove cloth using llama wool. Besides these they were expert goldsmiths and made beautiful figurines of gold which they buried with their dead. The downfall of Inca empire begin in 1525 and by 1533 it was fully under Spanish control.

Further north in the area where Mexico is located, about 700 years ago, flourished the Aztec civilization. The Aztecs worshiped the sun god and made human sacrifices to please him. Aztecs too made beautiful jewellery from gold, pearls, turquoise etc. In 1519 first Spaniards arrived in Mexico and last of the Aztec emperor, Montezuma II, was captured and killed.

The North American Indians

It is not counted among earliest empires because of lack of imperialist nature. More than 20,000 years ago the first inhabitants of North America arrived from Asia. These people were called North American Indian. Indian mostly lead a nomadic life, they hunted animals and used meat for food. They lived in tents called Tepees, which were made from buffalo stretched over wooden poles. There were various Indian tribes which included Comanche, Apache, Cheyenne, Sioux, etc. The Indians spoke different languages in each tribe. The chief of each tribe wore a head dress made up of colorful feathers, other Indians in tribe wore feather depending upon their status. Their weapons included bows, arrows and small axes called tomahawks. When the European arrived, the Indians lost most of their tribal lands.

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1 COMMENT

  1. The Aztecs were one of many different tribes in Mexico . They were almost constantly at war with the Purepecha of Michoacan state. The latter had the advantage of having bronze while the Aztecs only had Copper.

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