Despite the extraordinary attention that modern armies pay to the subject of military leadership, the answer to the question, “What makes a good (military) leader?” is neither simple nor universal.
Their armies would meet in battle twice, and in both cases the Byzantine commander would make a fateful decision that would lead to his defeat.
Did the Normans exhibit any innovation in the battlefields of Normandy, England, Italy, Sicily, or the Balkans?
The story of the so-called First Arab Siege of Constantinople.
Who was Syrianos, and how did he come to be identified as the author of a collection of works of military nature that so deeply influenced the Byzantine literary genre of the military manuals in the 10th century?
After the Holy Cross, perhaps no other symbol has been associated more closely with the history and fate of the Byzantine Empire than the double-headed eagle motif
What was the strategy of the Norman expansion in Apulia, Calabria and Sicily and what were the factors that shaped it?
Here, I will deal with the methods and dangers of information and intelligence flow that authorities in Byzantium could gather in local markets and fairs, important ports, and taverns and inns, and how they reacted to spies and espionage activity in these particular places.
One question historians have been asking is how much of these Byzantine manuals are imitations of their ancient predecessors, and how much do they reflect the strategic thinking of their own period?
I will try to figure out the delicate equilibrium between the appetite of the Byzantines for war, and their willingness to negotiate by ‘other means’, i.e diplomacy, or the employment of stratagems, craft, and bribery.
I just wrote a book about the Middle Ages viewed through the lens of the most potent and dramatic aspect of war – battle.
What were the deeper reasons that drew the super-power of the time, Byzantium, into a protracted and ‘all-out’ conflict with the Arabs of Aleppo in the middle of the 10th century?
The unexpected rise of Basil and the obscurity of his origins resulted in one of the most striking features of the history of the early Macedonian dynasty: the growth of a myth around his birth, his early life and achievements
What can an epic poem from the the 12th century tells us about love and marriage in the Byzantine world?
Despite the fact that there is a relative abundance of contemporary or near contemporary sources on Heraclius’ campaigns, it is hard – if not impossible – to retrace the chronology of the events leading up to the restoration of the Cross.
The real challenge for the Empire in the aftermath of Manzikert lay in the mad scramble for power in Constantinople.