Gold glass, or gold sandwich glass, was a technique for fixing a layer of gold leaf with a design between two fused layers of glass, developed in Hellenistic glass and revived in the 3rd century AD. There are a very few large designs, including a very fine group of portraits from the 3rd century with added paint, but the great majority of the around 500 survivals are roundels that are the cut-off bottoms of wine cups or glasses used to mark and decorate graves in the Catacombs of Rome by pressing them into the mortar. They predominantly date from the 4th and 5th centuries. Most are Christian, though there are many pagan and a few Jewish examples. It is likely that they were originally given as gifts on marriage, or festive occasions such as New Year. Their iconography has been much studied, although artistically they are relatively unsophisticated.  Their subjects are similar to the catacomb paintings, but with a difference balance including more portraiture. As time went on there was an increase in the depiction of saints.  The same technique began to be used for gold tesserae for mosaics in the mid-1st century in Rome, and by the 5th century these had become the standard background for religious mosaics.
On the eastern front, at Justinian's accession the magister militum was a nephew of the emperor Anastasius , Hypatius, an experienced officer of no great ability. The commander of Armenia was Sittas, and the duke of Mesopotamia was Belisarius, both former members of Justinian's bodyguard where they had come to his notice. In 529, Justinian replaced Hypatius with Belisarius, whose staff included the historian Procopius, who served as Belisarius' legal advisor ( adsessor ). Procopius' account of the war with Persia at this point in time is biased in favor of his commander, although later his disillusion was to be bitter. Belisarius had married a crony of the empress, Antonina, and he rapidly acquired a military reputation: in June, 530, he won a major victory over a Persian invasion force at Daras , the fortress which Anastasius had built on the Persian frontier in violation of treaty obligations. The following year, however, he suffered a defeat at Callinicum on the Euphrates River and was recalled to Constantinople. Procopius does his best to shift blame for the defeat from Belisarius onto the Ghassanid (Arab) allies of the empire, but the account of John Malalas [] serves as a corrective: Belisarius' leadership had been barely competent, and al-Harith, the Ghassanid phylarch, and his tribesmen had given a good account of themselves. But in September, the shah of Persia, Kavadh, died and his successor Khusro I wanted peace until he could consolidate his position, for he was not his father's eldest son. In 532, the empire and Persia agreed upon the "Endless Peace". Justinian paid handsomely for this peace: 11,000 gold pounds, but if it had been really "endless" or at least of considerable duration, it would have been worth the price. As it was, Persia attacked again in 540.
For an excellent source on English composition, check out this classic book by William Strunk, Jr. on the Elements of Style. Contents include: Elementary Rules of Usage, Elementary Principles of Composition, Words & Expressions Commonly Misused, An Approach to Style with a List of Reminders: Place yourself in the background, Revise and rewrite, Avoid fancy words, Be clear, Do not inject opinion, Do not take shortcuts at the cost of clarity, … and much more. Details of The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. partially available online at . Note: William Strunk, Jr. (1869–1946). The Elements of Style was first published in 1918.