His mother became pregnant with him by one of her lovers while she was an actress. She tried to abort him, but failed, and the boy's father, afraid that she would resort to infanticide, took him away to Arabia. When the father died and Ióannés was in his teens, he learned the whole story of his birth and that his mother was now Empress. He returned to Byzantium, where he made his presence known. He was quickly called to the court by his mother. She did not want her husband to find out about Ioannes, so she had him killed.