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Theodosius II

Flavius Theodosius II (April, 401 - July 28, 450 ). The eldest son of Eudoxia and Arcadius who at the age of 7 became the Roman Emperor of the East.

He was heavily influenced by his eldest sister Pulcheria who pushed him towards orthodox Christianity. Pulcheria was the primary driving power behind the emperor and many of her views became official policy. These included her anti-Semitic view which resulted in the destruction of synagogues.

On the death of his father Arcadius in 408, he became Emperor. In June 421 Theodosius married the poet Aelia Eudocia. They had a daughter, Licinia Eudoxia, whose marriage with the Western Roman Emperor Valentinian III marked the re-unification of the two halves of the Empire, even if for a short time. Theodosius created the Constantinople University, and died in 450 as the result of a riding accident.

The Theodosian Code

Valentinian III. 425-455 AD. AV Solidus (4.42 gm) used to celebrate the marriage of Western Emperor Valentinian III to Licinia Eudoxia, daughter of the Theodosius II. On the reverse, the three of them in wedding dress. D N PLA VALENTI-NIANVS P F AVG, diademed and helmeted, draped and cuirassed bust right

FELICITER NVBTIIS, wedding scene with Theodosius II standing facing in center, his hands of the shoulders of Valentinian III and his daughter Licinia Eudoxia; all three nimbate-crowned and wearing ornate marriage robes; COMOB.

RIC X -; DOCLR -; Depeyrot -. EF. Apparently unpublished. This important coin commemorates the marriage of Valentinian III to Licinia Eudoxia on 29 October 437 AD. The imperial couple spent the winter of 437-438 in Thessalonica, at which time this coin was struck. Image Source : http://www.cngcoins.com

In 429 Theodosius appointed a commission to collect all of the laws since the reign of Constantine, allegedly the first Christian emperor, and create a fully formalized system of law. This plan was left unfinished, but the work of a second commission that met in Constantinople, assigned to collect all of the general legislations and bring them up to date was completed, and their collection published as the Codex Theodosianus in 438. The law code of Theodosius II, summarizing edicts made since the first Christian emperor Constantine, provided a basis for the law code of Justinian in the following century. Roman intolerance of impiety with respect to ritual was now extended to crimes of conscience and of thought.........

See also

Colossus of Barletta


Reign of Theodosius II (chapter of J. B. Bury's History of the Later Roman Empire)

Theodosian Code: Sections concerning religious observances (English)

George Long, "Codex Theodosianus"


Byzantine Emperor

Preceded by: Arcadius

Succeeded by: Marcian

Fergus Millar, A Greek Roman Empire, Power and Belief under Theodosius II , Sather Classical Lectures, 64 A Joan Palevsky Book in Classical Literature, to be published

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