Irene went as far as to send an official to instruct the Frankish princess in Greek; however, Irene herself broke off the engagement in 787, against her son's wishes. Comments Off on What to Know About Empress Irene of the Byzantine Empire. From 797 to 802 CE she ruled as emperor in her own right, the first woman to do so in Byzantine history.  Such claims are not supported by the Menaion (the official liturgical book providing the propers of the saints of the Orthodox Church), the "Lives of Saints" by Nikodemos the Hagiorite, or any other relevant book of the Orthodox Church. Even though her husband was an iconoclast, she harbored iconophile sympathies. Liz James, "Men, Women, Eunuchs: Gender, Sex, and Power" in "A Social History of Byzantium" (J. Haldon, ed.) Her hallucinations convince her to give up her rule and take her ship and marry its captain. Empress Irene of Athens was the first female ruler of the Byzantine Empire. Irene was born in Athens about the year 752. Because of that, there are many prominent historical figures from the Empire that came from Greece. Having chosen Tarasios, one of her partisans and her former secretary, as Patriarch of Constantinople in 784, she summoned two church councils.  After the incident, Leo refused to have marital relations with Irene ever again.  Furthermore, Irene is shown holding the orb, not Constantine, and only Irene's name is listed on the obverse of the coin, with Constantine VI's name only listed on the reverse, the less important side. She born between 750 and 755 CE and was related in some way to the noble Greek Sarantapechos family of Athens. , According to the 11th century historian George Kedrenos, who wrote many centuries after Irene's death, this crackdown on iconophiles began after Leo IV discovered two icons hidden underneath Irene's pillow. She was born about 752. A solar eclipse and darkness lasting 17 days were attributed to the horror of Heaven. Especially unusual is that, while Constantine V was a militant iconoclast who was known for persecuting venerators of icons, Irene herself displayed iconophile predilections. Here’s more information about who she was and the impact she played in history: Irene was an orphan related to the Sarantapechos family, a noble family in Athens. It is believed that she was born of a Greek noble family. , Leo IV, though an iconoclast like his father, pursued a policy of moderation towards iconophiles. Devoted to the Orthodox Church, she bent most of her efforts to suppressing iconoclasm . Relations between the two Empires remained difficult. on What to Know About Empress Irene of the Byzantine Empire, Carneades – Ancient Philosopher of Skepticism. In 790, with the army’s support, he seized the throne and banished his mother from court. Read the article "The Empress Irene" before answering Numbers 1, through 8. 100 Women Trailblazers. Irene sent a fleet, which succeeded in defeating the Sicilians. In the early 790s, several revolts tried to proclaim him as sole ruler. + Jfle Aene From UXL Biographies en Irene of Athens was crowned sole ruler of the Byzantine Empire in 797, she became the first woman ever to hold the throne of the old Roman Empire. This fact, combined with the limited information available about her family, has led some scholars to speculate that Irene may have been sel… 45,46; published 2009; See Garland, p. 89, who explains that Aetios was attempting to usurp power on behalf of his brother Leo. She was 17, when her father died and siblings were estranged by circumstances. After the success of Constantine V's general, Michael Lachanodrakon, who foiled an Abbasid attack on the eastern frontiers, a huge Abbasid army under Harun al-Rashid invaded Anatolia in summer 782. In support of Charlemagne's coronation, some argued that the Imperial position was actually vacant, deeming a woman unfit to be Emperor; however, Charlemagne made no claim to the Eastern Roman Empire. , Irene's most notable act was the restoration of the veneration of icons (images of Christ or the saints). Two years later, after a couple of unsuccessful wars against the Arabs and the Bulgar, he invited Irene back to court and named her co-ruler. Maria-Irene Palaiologina: Andronikos III Palaiologos (Palaiologoi) 1327 1336 as co-empress consort: 1354 husband's death: after 1356 Michael Asen IV: Kira Maria: Desislav - - 1360 as co-empress consort 17 February 1371 as sole-empress: early 1380s Ivan Shishman: Dragana: Lazar of Serbia - around 1386 3 June 1395 husband's death: before July 1395 The Pope thus refused to recognize Irene’s rule. Irene īrē´nē , c.750–803, Byzantine empress (797–802). A hollow semblance of friendship was maintained between Constantine and Irene, whose title of co-ruler was confirmed in 792; but the rival factions remained, and in 797 Irene, by cunning intrigues with the bishops and courtiers, organized a conspiracy on her own behalf. Her family background is not known. Ten years later, he assumed the throne as Constantine VI. Charlemagne invaded Italy early on in his reign, annexing the Lombard kingdom of Italy. Empress Irene, who was alive from 752 AD to 803 AD, was one of the these figures. In 771, she gave birth to the future Constantine VI. His eyes were gouged out, and he died from his wounds several days later. When he died in 780, she became regent because his son, Constantine, was only nine years old. One is her role in helping restore the use of Christian icons or images in Byzantium, which had been forbidden in the Eastern Orthodox form of Christianity. , Irene next had to subdue a rebellion led by Elpidius, the strategos of Sicily. The Byzantine Empire had never had a female ruler before, and women could not inherit the throne. Constantine could only flee for aid to the provinces, but even there participants in the plot surrounded him. She then became Empress in her own name. Irene’s unprecedented position as an empress ruling in her own right was emphasized by the coincidental rise of the Carolingian Empire in western Europe, which rivaled Irene’s Byzantium in size and power. Empress Irene Series. In 783, Irene enjoyed her first military success when her favorite courtier Staurakios led an army against the Slavs in Greece. With him out of the way, Irene proclaimed herself sole ruler.  (See Seventh Ecumenical Council. , From the beginning, Irene seems to have taken more power for herself than was traditionally expected of female regents. 1 Early Life (752 AD-768 AD) 2 Empress Consort (786 AD-780 AD) 3 Empress Regent (780 AD-797 AD) 4 Empress (797 AD-802 AD) 5 Referring literature to Eirene Irene Sarantapechos was born into a wealthy patrician family in Athens in the year 752 AD. Seized by his attendants on the Asiatic shore of the Bosphorus, Constantine was carried back to the palace at Constantinople. In 797 Irene had … During her rule as regent, she called the Second Council of Nicaea in 787, which condemned iconoclasm as heretical and brought an end to the first iconoclast period (730–787). Empress Irene was the wife of Leo IV and, on her husband’s death, she reigned as regent for her son Constantine VI from 780 to 790 CE. Their son was born just a little over a year after the marriage. The clergy and nobles attending the ceremony proclaimed Charlemagne as "Augustus". Special offers and product promotions. Whether he actually desired a coronation at all, remains controversial – his biographer Einhard related that Charlemagne had been surprised by the Pope – but the Eastern Empire felt its role as the sole Roman Empire threatened and began to emphasize its superiority and its Roman identity. Church, Charlemagne was in fact the political master of Rome itself. $33.88 - $39.97. She used the title "basilissa" in all other documents, coins, and seals. Called “Irene of Athens” in honor of her birthplace, Irene is mainly remembered for two dramatic events. In 800, he decreed that Charlemagne was now the Holy Roman Emperor. Book 1.  Lynda Garland, a historian of the Byzantine Empire, states that this story too closely resembles a different story told about the later empress Theodora, wife of Theophilos, to be historically true. In the Iberian Peninsula, Charlemagne's expedition against al-Andalus led to the creation of a buffer zone between Francia and the Islamic world called the Spanish Marches. Moreover, Charlemagne issued laws called "capitularies" in the style of a Roman Emperor. Charlemagne also increasingly modelled his rule after Roman Emperors by sponsoring enormous construction programs, exemplified by the building of his favourite residence at Aachen (in modern-day Germany), standardizing weights and measures and supporting intellectual and artistic endeavors in the Carolingian renaissance. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2014), 80, 98-99. Irene of Athens or Irene the Athenian (Greek: Εἰρήνη ἡ Ἀθηναία; c. 752 – 9 August 803 AD) is the commonly known name of Irene Sarantapechaina (Greek: Εἰρήνη Σαρανταπήχαινα), Byzantine empress regnant from 797 to 802.  Constantine Sarantapechos's son Theophylact was a spatharios and is mentioned as having been involved in suppressing a revolt in 799. Examples of Empress Irene in the following topics: The Emperor Irene. During her time as regent, she had several military successes.  She had Nikephoros and his four brothers ordained as priests, a status which disqualified them from ruling, and forced them to serve communion at the Hagia Sophia on Christmas Day 780. Irene's alleged unprecedented status as a female ruler of the Roman Empire led Pope Leo III to proclaim Charlemagne emperor of the Holy Roman Empire on Christmas Day of 800 under the pretext that a woman could not rule and so the throne of the Roman Empire was actually vacant. She apparently was a beautiful but orphaned girl who at the age of seventeen was brought to Constantinople by the Emperor Constantine V to be married to his son Leo in November 769. In relation to the coin, the lettering is of poor quality and the attribution to Irene may be problematic. It is unclear why she was selected as the bride for the young Leo IV. A female relative of Irene, Theophano, was chosen in 807 by Emperor Nikephoros I as the bride of his son and heir Staurakios. During this time Charlemagne was at war with the Saxons, and would later become the new king of the Franks. Holland, Cecilia (fiction), The Belt of Gold (1984). "The Empress Irene. Saint Irene of Hungary (1088 – 13 August 1134), born Piroska, was a Byzantine empress by marriage to John II Komnenos.She is venerated as a saint. This rare coin, minted during her reign, not surprisingly incorporates remarkable iconographical innovations, with every detail stressing her sole imperial authority. A After her death, she became a saint in the Eastern Orthodox Church. , On 14 January 771, Irene gave birth to a son, the future Constantine VI, who was named after his grandfather, Irene's father-in-law, Constantine V. When Constantine V died in September 775, Leo IV ascended to the throne at the age of twenty-five, and Irene became empress. Saints and Feasts: Apodosis of the Transfiguration Empress Irene (tonsured Xenia), wife of Emperor John II Comnenus Venerable Abba Dorotheus of Gaza Eudocia the Empress, wife of Theodosius the Younger, in Palestine Translation of the relics of Venerable Maximus the Confessor Our Righteous Fathers Sergius, Stephanus, Castor and Palamonus Tikhon of Zadonsk, Bishop of Voronezh and …  Rumors were circulated claiming that Leo IV had died of a fever after putting on the jeweled crown that had been dedicated by either Maurice (ruled 582 – 602) or Heraclius (ruled 610 – 641). Irene was also known for her generous financial policies, which were especially friendly to monasteries. , In 802 the patricians conspired against her, deposing her on 31 October, and placing Nikephoros, the minister of finance (logothetēs tou genikou), on the throne. Certainly, in both 787 and 843 icon-veneration was restored as orthodox practice by an empress ruling as regent for an under-age son: both empresses, Irene and Theodora, were later canonised. There was a time when Greece was part of the Byzantine Empire. Ten years later, he assumed the throne as Constantine VI. His half-brother, Nikephoros, almost immediately challenged Irene’s rule as regent. Constantine became even less popular when he repudiated his empress in favor of his mistress Theodote.  He ordered for a number of prominent courtiers to be arrested, scourged, tonsured, and tortured after they were caught venerating icons. Empress Irene and the Silk Trade (752-803 CE).  An unnamed female relative of Irene was married to the Bulgar ruler Telerig in 776. Depiction of Byzantine Empress Irene, the wife of Emperor John II (r. 1118-1143 CE) as found in the Hagia Sophia in modern-day Istanbul (previously Constantinople), Turkey. In 781, Irene discovered that Elpidios, the Strategos or Governor of Sicily, was planning a coup that would put Nikephoros on the throne. A member of the politically prominent Sarantapechos family, she was selected as Leo IV's bride for unknown reasons in 768. As he grew older, Constantine VI increasingly impatient under his mother’s rule. She appointed Tarasios to be the Patriarch of Constantinople.  Although she was an orphan, her uncle or cousin Constantine Sarantapechos was a patrician and possibly also a strategos ("general") of the theme of Hellas at the end of the eighth century. It also reunited the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches. Secondary sources She also held two church councils, one in 786 and one in 787. Empress Irene, also known as Irene of Athens, was the consort of Emperor Leo IV, who ruled Byzantium. Charlemagne proposed marriage to Irene, and she accepted. Irene of Athens (c. 752 – 803 AD) was Byzantine empress from 797 to 802.; Before that, Irene was empress consort from 775 to 780, and empress dowager and regent from 780 to 797. Empress Irene set out to solve the issue of iconoclasm which was established in the empire. More. ), While this greatly improved relations with the Papacy, it did not prevent the outbreak of a war with the Franks, who took over Istria and Benevento in 788. ", De Imperatoribus Romanis – Constantine VI (780–797 A.D.) and Irene (797–802 A.D.), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Irene_of_Athens&oldid=996695406, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles needing additional references from October 2019, All articles needing additional references, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2019, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Wikipedia articles incorporating text from the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Wikipedia articles with PLWABN identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Nevertheless, Irene was constantly harried by the Abbasids, and in 782 and 798 had to accept the terms of the respective Caliphs Al-Mahdi and Harun al-Rashid.  On the same day, Irene returned the crown her husband had removed as part of a full imperial procession. He also campaigned against the Saxon tribes in northern Germany for more than thirty years, annexing their territory and compelling them to convert to Christianity, and defeated the Avars in Central Europe. Irene of Athens (Greek: Εἰρήνη ἡ Ἀθηναία, Eirénē ē Athēnaía; c. 752 – 9 August 803), surnamed Sarantapechaina (Σαρανταπήχαινα), was Byzantine empress by marriage to Emperor Leo IV from 775 to 780, regent during the minority of their son Constantine VI from 780 until 790, co-regent from 792 until 797, and finally sole ruler and first empress regnant of the Byzantine Empire from 797 to 802. An attempt to free himself by force was met and crushed by the Empress, who demanded that the oath of fidelity should thenceforward be taken in her name alone. Written by GreekBoston.com in Ancient Greek History Mosaic of Empress Irene, Hagia Sophia, Istanbul. In 802, before they could marry, Nikephoros staged a coup and overthrew her. Claims about her supposed canonization are mainly from Western sources. The army eventually made it up to Bulgar territory and annexed it to Byzantium. Irene then turned her attention to the restoration of icon veneration. The clergy and nobles attending the ceremony proclaimed Charlemagne as “Emperor of the Roman Empire.” In support of Charlemagne’s coronation, some argued that the imperial position was actually vacant, deeming a wom… To help solidify her claim to the throne, Irene sought a closer relationship with Charlemagne, the King of the Franks. She was educated like any other Greek Byzantine noble girl of her class. Prior to becoming empress regnant, Irene was empress consort from 775 to 780, and empress dowager and regent from 780 to 797. Leo, however, was a steadfast iconoclastwho, according to tradition, found that Irene possessed icons and thereafter would no longer … , Irene's unprecedented position as an empress ruling in her own right was emphasized by the coincidental rise of the Carolingian Empire in Western Europe, which rivaled Irene's Byzantium in size and power. They are forced into landing on a planet with hallucinogenic vegetation. Sensationnel 100% Premium Fiber Empress Free Part Easy 3-Way Parting Lace Front Edge Wig - KAILYN (2) 3.9 out of 5 stars 13. Irene was brought to Constantinople by Emperor Constantine V on 1 November 768 and was married to his son Leo IVon 17 December. She was an orphan, and there is some mystery around why she was chosen from obscurity to be the bride of Leo IV, heir to Constantinople. Irene Ducaena was the wife and empress of Alexios I Comnenus, marrying him shortly after he seized the throne on April 1, 1081. Elpidius fled to Africa, where he defected to the Abbasid Caliphate. Irene, by contrast, believed religious images should be revered.  When Patriarch Nicetas I of Constantinople died in 780, Leo IV appointed Paul of Cyprus, who had iconophile sympathies, as his successor, although he did force him to swear oaths that he would uphold the official iconoclasm. Constantine V brought Irene to Constantinople in November, 768, and she married his son Leo IV, who was then co-ruler of Byzantium, a month later. The strategos of the Bucellarian Theme, Tatzates, defected to the Abbasids, and Irene had to agree to pay an annual tribute of 70,000 or 90,000 dinars to the Abbasids for a three-year truce, to give them 10,000 silk garments, and to provide them with guides, provisions, and access to markets during their withdrawal. A revolt in 802 overthrew Irene and exiled her to the island of Lesbos, supplanting her on the throne with Nikephoros I. Irene died in exile less than a year later.  At the same time, Irene appears to have been well aware that her position as regent was insecure.  However, there is no solid evidence to support this hypothesis other than the apparent bizarreness of Irene's selection as Leo IV's bride. Color: DXRRB1.  It is unclear why she was selected as the bride for the young Leo IV. In 797, Irene led a coup against Constantine, took him prisoner, and had him blinded. When he died in 780, she became regent because his son, Constantine, was only nine years old.  Especially unusual is that, while Constantine V was a militant iconoclast who was known for persecuting venerators of icons, Irene herself displayed iconophile predilections. She negotiated a marriage between her son Constantine and Rotrude, a daughter of Charlemagne by his third wife Hildegard.  During Lent of 780, however, Leo IV's policies on iconophiles became much harsher. Prior to this, icon usage in the church had been banned. , As early as 781, Irene began to seek a closer relationship with the Carolingian dynasty and the Papacy in Rome. As Irene's son Constantine reached maturity, he began to move out from under the influence of his mother. 2. Theodora moved to higher studies, Justin was enthroned and puppeted by Maximian Prothoperos … Empress Irene (image from “Pala d’Oro”, Venice) Not much is known about Irene’s early life. Empress Irene's ship The Wanderer is stolen and she gives chase. There was a religious movement called Iconoclasm at the time, and believers like Leo IV considered religious icons to be a form of idolatry. This series occasionally crossed over with the John Grimes / Rim World books. Because of this, Empress Irene is named as a saint in the Orthodox Christian Church. Irene sent a fleet to Sicily and Elpidios fled to Africa. In 800, Charlemagne was crowned emperor by Pope Leo III, on Christmas Day. This page was last edited on 28 December 2020, at 03:39. He was imprisoned and probably died shortly afterwards. Irene was one of only three female rulers to hold sole power in the 1,100-year-long history of the Byzantine Empire. Irene Ducas, (born c. 1066, Constantinople, Byzantine Empire [now Istanbul, Turkey]—died Feb. 19, 1123 [or 1133], Constantinople), wife of the Byzantine emperor Alexius I Comnenus, known from the description of her in the Alexiad of their daughter, Anna Comnena. Irene Doukaina or Ducaena (Greek: Ειρήνη Δούκαινα, Eirēnē Doukaina) (c. 1066 – February 19, 1123 or 1133) was the wife of the Byzantine emperor Alexios I Komnenos, and the mother of the emperor John II Komnenos and of the historian Anna Komnene. In spite of these reverses, Irene's military efforts met with some success: in 782 her favoured courtier Staurakios subdued the Slavs of the Balkans and laid the foundations of Byzantine expansion and re-Hellenization in the area. Irene came from a noble family in Athens. In 797, Irene organized a conspiracy in which her supporters gouged out her son's eyes, maiming him severely.  Irene had Bardas (the former strategos of the Armeniac Theme), Gregory (the logothete of the dromos), and Konstantinos (the count of the excubitors) scourged, tonsured, and banished.   She was a member of the noble Greek Sarantapechos family, which had significant political influence in central mainland Greece.  Leo IV launched an investigation and discovered the courtiers who had brought the icons. He proved to be an ineffective and unpopular ruler, and Irene seized the throne in 797. Irene fled to Lesbos and died there a year later. Irene, (born c. 752, Athens—died Aug. 9, 803, Lesbos), Byzantine ruler and saint of the Greek Orthodox Church who was instrumental in restoring the use of icons in the Eastern Roman Empire. She served (780–90) as regent for her son, Constantine VI , and later was made (792) joint ruler. The second council ended with icon veneration officially restored. , Leo IV died on 8 September 780 and Irene became regent for their nine-year-old son Constantine VI. An East Roman (Byzantine) empress, Irene of Athens (752-803) convened the Seventh Ecumenical Council and restored the veneration of icons in the Byzantine Empire.  She replaced all of them with dignitaries who were loyal to her. The second, convened at Nicaea in 787, formally revived the veneration of icons and reunited the Eastern church with that of Rome. Irene was exiled to Lesbos and forced to support herself by spinning wool. , Irene was brought to Constantinople by Emperor Constantine V on 1 November 768 and was married to his son Leo IV on 17 December.  Irene insisted that she had not known the icons were there. Irene is said to have endeavoured to bring about a marriage alliance between herself and Charlemagne, but according to Theophanes the Confessor, who alone mentions it, the scheme was frustrated by Aetios, one of her favourites. Italics indicates a junior co-emperor, while underlining indicates a usurper. Amazon Business: For business-only pricing, quantity discounts and FREE Shipping. She Wasn’t The Most Likely Candidate For Empress No one knows exactly how the Roman Emperor, Constantine V, came to choose Irene as the bride of his son Leo IV. With that of Rome itself GreekBoston.com in Ancient Greek history Comments Off on What to about. In 792, Irene had Nikephoros and his brothers ordained as priests, had. For unknown reasons in 768 [ 13 ] the ceremony proclaimed Charlemagne as `` Augustus....: for business-only pricing, quantity discounts and FREE Shipping well aware that her position as regent their... 2020, at 03:39 Off on What to Know about empress Irene in the had. 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