After the Western Empire 'fell' in 476 CE, a new empire rose in its place. The new empire, the Byzantine Empire, was based on the cultures and traditions of the Western Empire, but also contained many distinctive features. The two empires were very similar since they existed in the same area and carried some of the same cultural roots. But the Byzantine Empire came into existence after the Roman Empire divided into two sections and the Western Roman Empire collapsed. One reason for the decline of the Western Roman Empire was that the move of the capital city to Constantinople in 330 C. E.

Emperor Constantine moved the capital to a better location for trade and defense purposes. As the Byzantine Empire grew and prospered, it carried on traditions, culture and the way of life of the Western Roman Empire. In both the Byzantine and Western Roman Empire's the complex and well thought out systems of government contributed to the success of the empires. Since the Roman system of government was developed 400 years before the Byzantine government, Byzantine officials borrowed some of the Roman Laws. These Roman laws were called the Justinian Code, which was a legal system that helped the Byzantine Empire survive for many years.

This code, created by emperor Justinian, consisted of four main parts. The Code, 5000 working laws, the Digest, explains why they exist, the Institutes, text book for lawyers, and the Novella e, room for new laws. Another part of the government that both the Byzantine and the Western Roman Empire had in common was a civil service. Augustus first established a civil service in the Roman Empire in 27 C. E. It was a system that pays workers who are skilled at their jobs to work for the government.

This idea was carried to the Byzantine Empire where a, exactly like a civil service, was set up. Another major part of both empires was their strong and loyal army. The army was used for defending the vast empires as well as expanding it by conquering new territories. The Byzantine Empire expanded to almost the size of the Roman Empire due to its relentless army. This army conquered parts of North Africa, Rome, Italy and Spain. Without the army, the Byzantine Empire wouldn't have been so large.

The system of government that included Roman Law, the civil serve and the army was passed from the Western Roman Empire to the Byzantine Empire once he Roman Empire collapsed.