Maria, wife of Leo III
|Spouse||Leo III the Isaurian|
|Issue||Anna, Constantine V, Irene, Kosmo|
|with Constantine V as co-emperor, 720–751|
|with Leo IV as co-emperor, 751–775|
|with Constantine VI as co-emperor, 776–780|
|under Irene as regent, 780–790, and with her as co-regent, 792–797|
|Irene as empress regnant||797–802|
Twenty Years' Anarchy
The throne of the Byzantine Empire was unstable in the early 710s. Justinian II had been deposed and executed in 711. His deposition was followed by the brief reigns of Philippikos (711–713), Anastasios II (713–715) and Theodosios III (715–717). All three were elevated to the throne after coup d'états by factions of the Byzantine army.
A revolt by Leo, strategos of the Anatolikon Theme, and Artabasdos, strategos of the Armeniac Theme, succeeded in deposing Theodosios. On 25 March 717, Leo was proclaimed emperor in Hagia Sophia. Maria enters historical record at this point as his Empess consort.
The siege was broken by August of the same year and the Umayyad forces retreated. On 25th, Maria was granted the title of Augusta and her son was baptised by Patriarch Germanus I of Constantinople. Constantine was proclaimed co-emperor in August 720.
Leo remained Emperor to his death on 18 June 741. Whether Maria survived him is unknown.
Maria and Leo III had four known children:
- Anna (c. 705 – after 772), who married Artabasdos.
- Constantine V (July, 718 – 14 September 775).
Theodora of Khazaria
|Byzantine Empress consort
Tzitzak and Anna