Manuel II Kaiser von Byzanz
Of the nearly ninety emperors who ruled in Constantinople, Manuel II Palaeologus (r. 1391–1425) was one of the most sympathetic as a human being and one of the most gifted as a statesman. A man of broad intellectual interests, he was also dedicated to his God-given task of preserving what remained of the Byzantine Empire when he came to power. This conflict is reflected in his letters, written in such distant places as Ankara, Paris, and London. The correspondence provides new insights into his reign and enable us to understand better the emperor himself, his friends, and the times in which they lived.