Isaac I Komnenos
- Emperor (q.v.) from 1057-1059. After overthrowing Michael VI (q.v.) his brief reign held the promise that Byzantium's (q.v.) military power might be restored. However, the rapid pace of his reforms alienated the civil bureaucracy, whose pensions and salaries were cut drastically. The new tax surcharges on the provinces and the collection of unpaid taxes did not make him popular. The Patriarch Michael I Keroularios (qq.v.) turned against him when he revived the anti-monastic legislation of Nikephoros II Phokas (q.v.), and he appointed Michael Psellos (q.v.) as his chief minister. Isaac removed Keroularios and appointed Constantine III Leichoudes (q.v.) in his place, which alienated the church. Threats from the Pechenegs and Hungarians (qq.v.) were repulsed, but Isaac became increasingly isolated, and when he fell ill Psellos persuaded him to retire to a monastery.
Historical Dictionary of Byzantium . John H. Rosser .
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