Emperor, Warrior, Church Builder, Lawmaker
[November 14]

( 483 November 13 or 14 565)


O Only-begotten Son and Word of God,
Thou Who are Immortal, yet didst deign 
for our salvation to be incarnate through 
the most holy Lady and Ever-Virgin 
Mary, and without change didst become 
Man and wast crucified, trampling upon 
death by death, do thou, O Christ our 
God, Who are one of the Holy Trinity and 
art glorified, together with the Father 
and the Holy Spirit, save us.
[A hymn composed by the Emperor Justinian the Great, contained in the Divine Liturgy]

Flavius Petrus Sabbatius Iustinianus, known a Justianian the Great is regarded as a saint in the Orthodox churches and some Lutheran churches. He came from a simple family and was adopted by Justin 1 (a imperial guardsman) who became Emperor. In his early years he served in the imperial guard. As a warrior Emperor he directed campaigns which recovered large portions of the Empire to include Rome, and established Ravenna as the capital in the West. He directed the rewriting of the civil code, which forms the basis of law in many countries of the world today. Finally, he brought the Byzantine Empire to a state of glory previously unknown. In areas of faith, he suppressed pagans and heretics, built the great churches like Holy Wisdom, the center of Orthodoxy, and exemplified the Christian ruler.

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Justinian Court Ravenna