The following is a tale of the struggle between the Emperors of Constantinople and the the Bishops of Rome
Between 541 and 543 AD, the Plague of Justinian, traditionally regarded as the first of three human plague pandemics, spread from either central Asia or Africa across the Mediterranean basin into Europe, killing an estimated 100 million people according to the contemporary scholar Procopius
Have a pest troubling you? In the Middle Ages, you could try these remedies to get rid of them – poisons, traps, or even writing a letter to them!
Examining the miracles of Byzantine saints
Two hegemonies, one island: Cyprus as a ‘Middle Ground’ between the Byzantines and the Arabs (650-850 A.D.)
This paper aims to assess the political and cultural status of the island of Cyprus as the only place within the Mediterranean where Christian heirs of Romans and Muslims shared the local tax revenue to create a buffer zone between two empires.
The purpose of this article is to identify some of the factors which contributed to this economic revival and rectify the image of Byzantium in the 12th century
Calculating how much the army was paid during the Theodosian period is more difficult than calculating the army’s pay about a century earlier or later.
A recurring theme in the historiography of the First Crusade is that of the Byzantine emperor asking Pope Urban to send a small contingent against the Turks and receiving instead vast armies over which he had no control
The main subject of this study is an outstanding twelfth-century psalter produced in Normandy which has clear Eastern influences, both in terms of technical conception and iconography.
A piece of Byzantine hagiography from the fourteenth century which, in spite of its religious character, is a valuable source for the history of the Catalan Grand Company, Roger de Flor’s famous band of Spanish mercenaries hired by the Byzantine emperor Andronikos II Palaiologos (1282-1328) to fight the Turks in Anatolia.
A five-minute video shows the fortunes of the Byzantine Empire, from the year 396 to the fall of Constantinople to the Ottomans in 1453
The evidence for institutional libraries—those of the palace, the secular and patriarchal schools in Constantinople, and the monasteries—gives an approximate idea of the nature and extent of their holdings.
The details of the siege remain, however, shrouded in mystery: its exact dates (670–7 or 674–8?) and length (4 or 7 years?) are a matter of controversy; it is disputed whether the Arabs subjected Constantinople to a regular siege or only to a naval blockade; and the overall logic of events is far from clear.
The charred grape seeds, over 1,500 years old, found in southern Israel excavation were used to produce the ‘Wine of the Negev’ – one of the finest and most renowned wines in the whole of the Byzantine Empire.
The main lines of thinking in the research on medieval Eastern Roman identity could be roughly summarized as follows: The first, extensively influenced by the retrospective Modern Greek national discourse, approaches this identity as the medieval form of the perennial Greek national identity.
This study examines Byzantine enamel medallions of the 11th century that represent empresses in encounters with holy figures.
‘De civitatis utriusque, terrenae scilicet et caelestis’: Foundation Narratives and the Epic Portrayal of the First Crusade
My summary of a paper given at the Institute of Historical research on the accounts of Antioch and Jerusalem during the First Crusade.
The Lombard-Byzantine conflict was a defining moment in Byzantine history, and especially important for the future of Italy. The wars would not only lead to the end of Byzantine hegomony in Italy, but they also helped in widening the gap between the pope and Catholic Italy on the one hand, and the Emperor and Greek Constantinople on the other, thus paving the way for the emergence of new Romano-German Christian realms in the West.
Description and dating of the icon of the Heavenly Ladder Jacob ‘dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached toheaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.
‘For a bond of incomparable love made us happier than all people, but the thieving and cruel hand of Hades cut the bond mercilessly. ‘
The Patriarch Alexios Stoudites and the Reinterpretation of Justinianic Legislation against Heretics
Using normative legal sources such as law codes and imperial novels to illuminate Byzantine heresy is a very difficult proposition. One of the great problems in the analysis of Byzantine law in general is that the normative legal sources rarely were adapted to subsequent economic, political, or social conditions.
One of the consequences of the decline of Roman imperial might was the shortage of slaves at state-run mines. Consequently, criminals were often sentenced to damnatio ad metallum. The need for gold especially soared when the gold solidus was introduced at the beginning of the fourth century.
During the last two centuries before the Renaissance of the arts in Italy in the 15th century, different waves of classical trends marked the artistic creation of both Byzantine and western worlds.