Leo III


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Leo III

(Leo the Isaurian or Leo the Syrian), c.680–741, Byzantine emperor (717–41). He was probably born in N Syria (rather than in Isauria, as once thought). He held diplomatic and military posts before he deposed and succeeded Theodosius III. His accession ended the anarchy into which the empire had fallen since the reign of Justinian IIJustinian II
(Justinian Rhinotmetus), 669–711, Byzantine emperor (685–95, 705–11), son and successor of Constantine IV. He successfully invaded Arab territory but lost the advantage through a truce that ceded much of Asia Minor to the Arabs.
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. Leo defended Constantinople against the last Arab siege (717–18), and although he had to contend with Arab attacks in Asia Minor, he succeeded in ending serious Arab threats for nearly two centuries and reorganized the military provinces (themes) of the empire for greater efficiency. His civil code, the Ecloga, written in Greek rather than in Latin, was a practical handbook that had considerable influence in Byzantium. He is also credited with issuing military, maritime, and rural codes. Leo's attack (726) on devotion to holy images began the long struggle over iconoclasmiconoclasm
[Gr.,=image breaking], opposition to the religious use of images. Veneration of pictures and statues symbolizing sacred figures, Christian doctrine, and biblical events was an early feature of Christian worship (see iconography; catacombs).
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. Riots and rebellions broke out in Greece, while Byzantine rule in Italy (the exarchate of Ravenna and the Pentapolis of Rimini, Ancona, Fano, Pesaro, and Senigallia) began to crumble. The popes Gregory II and Gregory III opposed Leo's iconoclasm and successfully defied his armed expeditions, thus virtually ending Byzantine suzerainty over Rome. Nevertheless, Leo left a revitalized empire to his son, Constantine V. The Isaurian, or Syrian, dynasty, which he founded, ruled the Byzantine Empire until 802.
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Leo III

1. called the Isaurian. ?675--741 ad, Byzantine emperor (717--41): he checked Arab expansionism and began the policy of iconoclasm, which divided the empire for the next century
2. Saint. ?750--816 ad, pope (795--816). He crowned Charlemagne emperor of the Romans (800). Feast day: June 12
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References in periodicals archive ?
Any iconophile writing before 787 had every reason not to exaggerate but to minimize the iconoclastic measures of Leo III and Constantine V so that the icons could be restored with minimal harm to the reputation of the reigning dynasty.
Recent historiography confirms Munz's account of Pope Leo III (750-816) as a clever operator, surviving the physical assault on him which took place in Rome in 799.
For example, John VII did not build a bishop's palace on the Palatine (118), nor did the Byzantine emperor Leo III write in Latin (123), and the Major Litany was penitential (145).
In 800 A.D., Pope Leo III crowned Charlemagne Emperor--and official guardian of the Catholic Church.
In historical terms, the controversy lasted 726-843, launched by emperors Leo III and son Constantine V, countered by John of Damascus' eloquent defence of iconodulia and the 731 Roman synods of Pope Gregory III, halted by the Second Nicene Council (787) and the empress Irene (797), renewed by Leo V and Theophilus, at whose death Iconoclasm was finally quashed.
Pius X, now officially sainted, was elected in 1903 at age 68 after the quarter-century reign of Leo III and served just 11 years.
His victories over the Lombards strengthened papal authority in Italy, and on December 25, 800, Pope Leo III invested Charlemagne as Emperor of the Romans at Christmas Mass in St.
Its most famous ruler, Charlemagne, was crowned as head of what would become the Holy Roman Empire by Pope Leo III in 800.
While Charlemagne prayed in a Roman church on Christmas Day, 800 AD, Pope Leo III set a crown upon the German king's head -- an event that inaugurated the Holy Roman Empire.
* (Spoleto) Leo III is saved from his enemies by Winigis, duke of Spoleto (799).(65)
A fragment of an epic probably written by him describes life at the palace and a meeting between Charlemagne and Pope Leo III; this work earned him the nickname of "Homer" from Alcuin.