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Research papers on The Byzantine Empire or East Roman Empire tell that the Byzantine Empire ceased to exist after the Ottoman Turks conquered Constantinople in 1453. However, its influence on the emerging countries of Europe was profound. Byzantine Empire's policy of religious freedom and its efficient system of Roman government and legal traditions put it light years ahead of those in Western Europe. In a sense, you can assert in your research paper that the Byzantine Empire was the connecting link between ancient and modern European civilization. After a brief description of the Byzantine Empire, the aforementioned topics should be discussed more thoroughly in the world history research paper.
The Byzantine Empire traces its roots back to 324 AD when the Roman emperor Constantine made the decision to move the capitol from Rome to the city of Byzantium on the west side of the Bosphorus, giving rise to an imperial power whose influence would change the world. Renaming the city Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey), the emperor made another decision that would have far-reaching implications; he granted religious freedom to the people in his empire, thus allowing the religion of Christianity to become the official religion of this empire. The power of Byzantine spans approximately 1000 years. At its most powerful, the Byzantine Empire ruled an enormous amount of territory. It stretched from Spain in the west to the mountains of Armenia in the east and extended from the Black Sea and the Danube in the north to the coast of Africa in the south. The heart of the empire was Greece with adjacent sections of southeastern Europe and Asia Minor. Constantinople was positioned favorably between Europe and Asia along the east-west trade routes. Its location on a peninsula, surrounded on three sides by water with the fourth side an imposing land wall, gave it great protection as well as economic potential.