1 / “Rome vs. Greek” complexity of Byz Empire.
Rome was like United Nations today, a title that everybody would love to appropriate. Charlemagne, King of Franks, in 800AC was crowned Emperor of Romans. The Byz King claimed he was King of Romans.
Who was the true Roman King?
2 / Keep in mind that:
– phrase “Byzantine Empire” didn’t exist
– word Rome is actually greek. From Ρώμη (power)
– Greeks never called themselves Greeks
– Byz called themselves Ῥωμηοί (modern greek national symbol) with 20+ nationalities in a central culture. Complex enough?
3 / Imagine this scenario: a Byz emperor writes a letter in greek, the official language of Byz empire, claiming the true Roman identity of his title. Now imagine a Frank cardinal or Pope answers in LATIN, from the CAPITAL of OLD ROME. What would his identity be? Chinese?
4 / Of course the Pope would answer: “c’mon man! you may be rich and all but you don’t even latin! I crowned my pal Charlemagne, King of Franks as Emperor of Romans & we’re visiting you soon for funny crusades, we’ll steal the sh*it out of your treasures. Kisses. The Pope.”
5 / And that’s why if you’re latin speaker you would name the Byzantine fire as “Greek fire”, not “Roman fire” (πυρ ρωμαϊκόν) as some Greek intellectuals would like you to say.
6 / Now the irony. Descendants of those who challenged the “Romanity” of Byz empire for 100s of years, in 2018 claim that actually the Byz empire was old-school Roman! Why? Stealing treasures is not enough. The rich Byz culture has to be stolen also. Big $$ geopolitics.