Heraklonas

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Heraklonas
Emperor of the Byzantine Empire
Solidus-Heraclius-sb0764.jpg
Heraklonas with his father, Heraclius and brother, Constantine III
Reign February 641 – September 641
Predecessor Constantine III
Successor Constans II
Full name
Constantinus Heraclonas
Dynasty Heraclian Dynasty
Father Heraclius
Mother Martina
Died 641 (aged 15)
Heraclian dynasty
Chronology
Heraclius 610–641
with Constantine III as co-emperor, 613–641
Constantine III 641
with Heraklonas as co-emperor
Heraklonas 641
Constans II 641–668
with Constantine IV (654–668), Heraclius and Tiberius (659–668) as co-emperors
Constantine IV 668–685
with Heraclius and Tiberius (668–681), and Justinian II (681–685) as co-emperors
Justinian II 685–695, 705–711
with Tiberius as co-emperor, 706–711
Succession
Preceded by
Phocas
Followed by
Twenty Years' Anarchy

Constantinus Heraclius (Greek: Κωνσταντῖνος Ἡράκλειος), known in English as Heraklonas, Heraclonas, or Heracleonas (626–641), was the son of Heraclius and his niece Martina, and was Byzantine Emperor briefly between February and September 641.

He was baptised and officially reigned as Constantinus Heraclius, but the diminutive nickname Heraklonas (Ἡρακλωνᾶς), little Heraclius, became established in Byzantine texts and has become standard in historiography.

Heraklonas was probably born at Lazica while his father was on campaign against Khosrau II of the Sassanid Empire. He was probably the fourth son of Martina and Herakleios, but the first one born free of physical deformity and eligible for the throne.

Towards the end of Heraclius' reign he obtained through his mother’s influence the title of Augustus on July 4, 638, and after his father’s death was proclaimed joint emperor with his older half-brother Constantine III (Herakleios Constantine).

The premature death of Constantine III, in May 641, left Heraklonas sole ruler. But a suspicion that he and Martina had murdered Constantine led soon after to a revolt under the general Valentinus, who forced Heraklonas to accept his young nephew Constans II as co-ruler. Martina intended to balance this setback with the coronation of her younger son the Caesar David (Tiberios) as emperor.

But this merely irritated the supporters of Constans II, and Valentinus spread rumors that Martina and Heraklonas intended to eliminate Constans and his supporters. The revolt which ensued toppled Heraklonas and his mother, who were subjected to mutilation and banishment. This was the first time a reigning emperor had been subjected to mutilation, which was a practice probably borrowed from the Persians;[citation needed] in this case, Martina's tongue and Heraklonas' nose were cut out. Nothing further is known about Heraklonas after his removal and exile to Rhodes. He is presumed to have died later that year. Constans II, the son of Constantine III, became sole emperor.

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External links[edit]

Media related to Heraclonas at Wikimedia Commons

Heraklonas
Born: 626 Died: after 641
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Constantine III,
Heraclius
Byzantine Emperor
641
with Constantine III
Succeeded by
Constans II