Виталий Е. Ермолин, студент холодных вод (seminarist) wrote,
Виталий Е. Ермолин, студент холодных вод


For the next five years he (Byzantine emperor Constantine Pogonatus - S.) kept his court at Syracuse. For the Sicilians, those five years were one protracted nightmare. The honour, such as it was, of finding their island selected for the capital of the Roman Empire was as nothing in comparison with the extortions of the imperial tax gatherers - for the satisfaction of whom, we are told, husbands were sold into slavery, wives forced into prostitution, children separated from their parents...

There was, so far as we know, no preconceived plan to assassinate him, far less any deeply hatched conspiracy; but on 15 September 668, while he was innocently lathering himself in his bath, one of his Greek attendants - in what we can only assume to have been a fit of uncontrollable nostalgia - felled him with the soap-dish.

Byzantium: The Early Centuries, by John Julius Norwich
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