The Byzantine Empire with its capital at Constantinople, the former Byzantium, had a long history that began in 395 AD, with the division of the Roman Empire between the sons of Theodosius, and ended in 1453, when the last emperor was defeated by the Ottoman Turks. Habitually the image and the name of the sovereign presided the monetary designs, but the Christian religion became more and more important, and the divine authority was often shown on the obverse of the coins. On this piece minted in the name of Michael VII the bust of Christ appears on the obverse, raising his hand in the act of blessing. Engraved on the reverse was the bust, face on, of the monarch, holding the labarum and the orb with the cross, the symbols of his power. The legend, in Greek writing, refers to the monarch's name and titles.