Birth of Last Byzantine Emperor, Constantine Palaeologus Hot

Birth of Last Byzantine Emperor, Constantine Palaeologus

Constantine XI Palaiologos
Source: Tilemahos Efthimiadis

The last emperor of the Byzantine Empire, Constantine XI Palaeologus, is born. Palaeologus will later die defending Constantinople against the armies of the Ottoman Turks in the last siege of 1453. He will lead a force of 4,000 to successfully hold off 160,000 advancing Turks for seven weeks.

Turkish Sultan Mehmed II will offer Constantine a deal: his life would be spared and he'd be allowed to continue ruling in Mistra if he simply surrendered Constantinople to the Turks. Constantine replies:

"To surrender the city to you is beyond my authority or anyone else's who lives in it, for all of us, after taking the mutual decision, shall die out of free will without sparing our lives."

At the end it is believed that Constantine XI Palaeologus removes the royal symbols from his clothing and leads a last charge with his troops, later to be buried unidentified in a mass grave. He becomes a legendary figure who will one day return to restore the Byzantine Empire and take Constantinople back from the Muslim Turks.

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