Michael IV Paphlagon

   Emperor (q.v.) from 1034-1041. He gained access to the court through the influence of his brother John the Orphanotrophos and the empress Zoe (qq.v.), Michael's lover and murderer of Romanos III (q.v.). The influence of John the Orphanotrophos at court was opposed by the aristocracy (q.v.), and harsh taxation sparked the revolt of Peter Deljan (q.v.). Stefan Voislav's (q.v.) revolt and the reversal of George Maniakes's (q.v.) conquests (in 1040) in Sicily (q.v.) also contributed to a sense of discontent. Michael IV's epilepsy made it increasingly difficult for him to govern. He retired to a monastery in 1041 and was succeeded by his nephew Michael V (q.v.).

Historical Dictionary of Byzantium . .

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