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Roman Emperor is the modern title for an office that was created by Augustus way back before Jesus was born in order to pretend that a monarchy was actually a democratic republican office. The Roman Emperor was the leader of the Roman Empire and nobody could tell him what to do or steal his hob-nobs. In fact, he'd tell you what to do and damn well help himself to as many of your biscuits and other sweetmeats as he felt like. Roman Emperors were also known with the Latin names Maniacus Maximus, Maniacus Infurians, Maniacus horribilis, Maniacus Eroticus, Maniacus Belligerensis or Maniacus Periculosus.
Rather than take the honest title of "King", Mighty warlord Augustus had the Roman senate vote him the powers of several offices at once that would usually be held by several people. These titles brought with them titles including the military title Imperator (latin for "Your Royal Highness") from whence we get the english word "Emperor" and Princeps which meant "First Citizen" (ie King). Augustus found that holding all these offices made his arms tired and so he gave the senate some responsibilities back such as responsibility for scheming, plotting and conspiring to kill. He also created the Praetorian Guard who were a bunch of hard bastards who made sure the senate didn't always carry out their responsibilities.
By the late 3rd century, the emperor Diocletian had had enough of Rome being a pretendy-republic and so dispelled the illusion by establishing the Dominate by declaring in the senate "Enough of this republic shit, I'm the daddy now!". This shocked many Romans who had thought the republic had genuinely continued under the Principate and that the reigns of Caligula and Nero were simply a democratic reflection of self-loathing on the part of the plebescite. Under the Dominate, the senate become even more staggeringly irrelevant and spent most of their time fucking lubed-up boys and eating dormice. The emperors also took to wearing crowns made of solid gold and decorated with many baubles and much tinsel.
The Byzantine Empire was a continuation of the Roman Empire only more Greek. Being mostly-greek they weren't too keen on the Latin titles for the emperor and so chose a nice greek one, namely Basileus which is ancient greek for "Bastard who tells us what to do". The first Byzantine Emperor to use the new term was Heraclius which was ironic as his predecessor, Phocas, was a complete Basileus.
All Byzantine emperors were Christian, monogamous, had beard, chanted hymns, were usually sane and did not commit sodomy, incest, zoophilia, orgies, drugs or drinking binges. In other words, they were rather boring chaps and the complete opposite of Roman Emperors. Honestly, who is really interested of some Basileus II Bolgaroktonos (the current record-holder in Bulgar slaying) who reigned for some 50 years, Maurice who dedicated his life for scientific warfare and writing army manuals and regulations or Justinianus, whose name all law students have cursed ever since. Compared to early emperors, the Byzantines were dullards.
Since 1453 when Constantine XI decided to throw himself into a crowd of angry Turks nobody is official Roman Emperor any more. Why don't you have a go at claiming the title? Might be fun!