Constantine VII (19 November 843-3 April 879) was the Emperor of the Byzantine Empire and the Frankish Empire from 21 of December to his death in 879. Succeeding his brother, Atticus II, Constantine VII led the Frankish Empire through a difficult era of economic and sociological chaos following the First Viking Wars. Along with his duties as leader of the Eastern Roman Empire and the Frankish Empire, Constantine VII was a Holy Roman Emperor.
Constantine VII was born on 2 April 842 in Constantinople to Atticus I and Aelia of Venice. He was raised by his parents in Constantinople until 854, when he moved to study under the Strategos of Macedonia, where he remained until the ascension of his brother, Atticus II, to the throne in late 863, at which point he became the strategos of the Hellas theme.
As the Hellas strategos, Constantine was shown to have been an effective ruler in terms of economics and diplomacy. His nickname, Constantine the Diplomat, was earned when he reached a deal with the Strategoi of Hellas and Macedonia regarding a monetary dispute.
Upon the death of Atticus II, who had no heirs suited to the task of becoming the Frankish and Byzantine emperor, Constantine was chosen as his successor. On 21 December 843, Constantine was crowned Constantine VII of the Byzantine Empire. The Franks, however, referred to him simply as Constantine. Only posthumously was his title as Constantine VII popularly used by the Frankish Empire. Constantine VII inherited the problems left over from the First Viking Wars.
While Jutland had been integrated into the Frankish Empire, there were still many problems. The devastated Rhine still lacked a proper infrastructure and a revolt in Jutland threatened to turn violent. Constantine VII was able to resolve many of these disputes between the former Danish peoples and the Franks. Rebuilding efforts along the Rhine continued as Constantine VII worked to improve the ailing economy of the Frankish Empire.
Despite his moderately effective rule, Constantine VII was unable to start an uprising in Jutland. Thinking a diplomatic trip to the newly conquered area may help ease relations with the disgruntled Danes, Constantine VII traveled to Jutland in late March of 879. While this diplomatic mission did ease tensions, the trip ended in Constantine VII's death. He was found stabbed to death in his chambers in Hammaborg on 3 April 879.
His son, Carloman, inherited the Byzantine and Frankish throne.