2. The daughter of Constantinus IX. was married first to Romanus III. Argyrus, who succeeded her father on the throne, and reigned A. D. 1028-1034. Towards the end of her husband's reign, though she was then about 50 years of age, she carried on a criminal intrigue with the general Michael, surnamed the Paphlagonian; and that she might be able to gratify her pleasures without restraint she caused her husband to be murdered, and raised Michael to the throne, whom she then married. Michael IV. the Paphlagonian, reigned from A. D. 1034-1041; and on his death, she was persuaded by the people to reign in her own name.
A few days made Zoe repent her ambition, and she placed the crown on the head of Michael V. Calaphates, whom her second husband had adopted in his life-time.
The new emperor showed the basest ingratitude to his benefactress, and commenced his reign by banishing Zoe.
This and other imprudent acts caused an insurrection at Constantinople. Michael was deposed at the end of a year's reign, and Zoe and her sister Theodora were proclaimed co-empresses on the 21st of April, 1042.
The two sisters reigned together for about two months; but as they feared for their position, Zoe, who was then about 60, married a third husband, whom she raised to the throne. and who is known by the name of Constantinus X. Monomacans.
She died in 1050 while her third husband was still alive. [CONSTANTINUS IX.; ROMANUS III.; MICHAEL IV. and V.; CONSTANTINUS X.]