A conversation with Gabriel Radle on the question of why and when adolescent girls or women “bound up” their hair. Which women did so, and under what circumstances? What kind of headgear was involved? And how did the Byzantine practice compare with that in other societies, ancient and medieval?
Gabriel Radle is an Assistant Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame. He specializes in early and medieval Christian liturgy, with a particular interest in the Eastern Mediterranean world. Click here to view his university webpage.
Our discussion is based on Gabriel’s article ‘The Veiling of Women in Byzantium: Liturgy, Hair, and Identity in a Medieval Rite of Passage,’ Speculum 94 (2019) 1070-1115.
Byzantium & Friends is hosted by Anthony Kaldellis, Professor and Chair of the Department of Classics at The Ohio State University. You can follow him on his personal website.
Top Image: Marble Portrait Bust of a Woman with a Scroll, late 4th–early 5th century, Byzantine – image courtesy The Metropolitan Museum of Art