"the Marble Emperor"
by cm

The last reigning Roman Emperor, Constantine XI Palaiologos, was killed in 1453 when Constantinople fell to the Turks.  Constantine led a last, fatal charge, and was later recognised only by his imperial purple boots. 

It was said that an angel turned the Emperor to marble and placed him in a cave near the Golden Gate, to one day be brought back to life and restore the Roman Empire.  He is a national hero in Greece for his defiant stand against the Ottomans, and is considered a saint by some.

There is a parallel with Friedrich Barbarossa, who in German legend sleeps in a mountain until the Holy Roman Empire is restored.