Crypt Sermon – “Byzantium”

Byzantium was originally a Greek colony founded by a man named Byzas back in 657 BCE. It was established on a peninsula protected on three sides by water, and it guarded the passage between the Black Sea and the Aegean Sea. Whoever controlled Byzantium was well on their way to controlling lucrative and vital trade routes, especially of grain from the fertile Black Sea region to the thin-soiled city-states of mainland Greece. The Athenians, Spartans, then Macedonians were fought over this city before the Romans took it over in the final centuries BCE. In 330 CE the emperor Constantine chose to transform the city into a new imperial capital called New Rome, but soon called by everyone Constantinople, “Constantine’s Town.” For the next thousand years, the city would stand as a fortress of classical culture at the crossroads of West and East. While its inhabitants called themselves Romans, later historians began referring to their empire as Byzantine, after the original name of the Greek town. In 1453 the city was taken by the Ottoman Turks and again transformed into a new imperial capital, Istanbul.

The epic doom metal band Crypt Sermon reimagine Byzantium as a kind of paradise, a New Jerusalem, Valhalla, or Ithaca, unfounded and eternal, the goal of one’s heroic wanderings through desert wastes.

“Ceaseless searching, following empty skies
The land of cedar and sword, unfounded home lies
Endless wandering, the sand and stone it never ends
Our home the land of cedar and sword, awaits us to make amends
Byzantium
Byzantium
Byzantium

Ceaseless Searching, following empty skies
The land of cedar and sword, unfounded home lies
Endless wandering, the sand and stone it never ends
Our home the land of cedar and sword, awaits us to make amends
Byzantium
Byzantium
Byzantium”

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