scispace - formally typeset
Search or ask a question
Journal ArticleDOI

The History of Theophylact Simocatta

01 Jan 1987-Classical World (JSTOR)-Vol. 80, Iss: 4, pp 324
About: This article is published in Classical World.The article was published on 1987-01-01. It has received 131 citations till now.
Citations
More filters
Book ChapterDOI
01 Dec 2005
TL;DR: The relationship between Romano-British and Anglo-Saxon cemeteries and settlements has been examined in this article, showing that high-ranking individuals were integrated within the community, in death as well as in life.
Abstract: Central to the re-evaluation of the Germanic migration and its impact on post-Roman Britain is the relationship between Romano-British and Anglo-Saxon cemeteries and settlements. The Romano-British cemetery at Queenford Farm, for instance, lay outside the Roman small town of Dorchester-on-Thames in an area with an early fifth-century Anglo-Saxon presence, yet radiocarbon dates indicate that it continued in use into the sixth century. The cemeteries and settlements of the sixth century indicate that the society within which the Anglo-Saxon identity developed was not rigidly stratified and that high-ranking individuals were integrated within the community, in death as well as in life. The earliest Anglo-Saxon leaders, unable to tax and coerce followers as successfully as the Roman state had done, instead extracted surplus by raiding and collecting food renders. By 600, the establishment of the first Anglo-Saxon emporia was in prospect. Anglo-Saxon society, in short, looked very different in ad 600 than it did a hundred years earlier.

30 citations

Book ChapterDOI
01 Dec 2005
TL;DR: A short survey of the ways in which those forms of evidence are approached and the sorts of questions which they can, and cannot, answer can be found in this paper, where the most common form of historical writing was related to ecclesiastical history: hagiography.
Abstract: Historical approaches to the written sources have changed in many ways and at several analytical levels. New evidence, new lenses, have become available. This chapter presents a short survey of the ways in which those forms of evidence are approached and the sorts of questions which they can, and cannot, answer. The most common form of historical writing, broadly defined, was related to ecclesiastical history: hagiography. A common source for post-Roman social history is the series of law-codes issued in the period. Another source of information for the period takes the form of letters. Poetic writing in this period took a number of forms. The theological writings are increasingly of interest to historians of the early Middle Ages, certainly far more than was the case a hundred years ago. The chapter discusses developments in archaeological theory, numismatics and epigraphy, and towns and trade. The study of medieval rural settlements provides many ways of examining social structure as well as economy.

30 citations

Book ChapterDOI
01 Jan 2009
TL;DR: In the Byzantine Empire, a series of violent usurpations that progressively undermined the security of each usurper, inviting foreign intervention, provincial revolts and attempted coups d'etat as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: Between the death of Alexios I Komnenos and the establishment of the Latin empire of Constantinople, eight emperors ruled in the eastern Roman capital. Their reigns were as successful as they were long: under John II Komnenos (1118–43) and Manuel I Komnenos (1143–80) Byzantium remained a wealthy and expansionist power, maintaining the internal structures and external initiatives which were necessary to sustain a traditional imperial identity in a changing Mediterranean world of crusaders, Turks and Italian merchants. But the minority of Manuel’s son Alexios II Komnenos (1180–83) exposed the fragility of the regime inaugurated by Alexios I. Lateral branches of the reigning dynasty seized power in a series of violent usurpations that progressively undermined the security of each usurper, inviting foreign intervention, provincial revolts and attempted coups d’etat . Under Andronikos I Komnenos (1183–5), Isaac II Angelos (1185–95), Alexios III Angelos (1195–1203), Alexios IV Angelos (1203–4) and Alexios V Doukas (1204), the structural features which had been the strengths of the state in the previous hundred years became liabilities. The empire’s international web of clients and marriage alliances, its reputation for fabulous wealth, the overwhelming concentration of people and resources in Constantinople, the privileged status of the ‘blood-royal’, the cultural self-confidence of the administrative and religious elite: under strong leadership, these factors had come together to make the empire dynamic and great; out of control, they and the reactions they set up combined to make the Fourth Crusade a recipe for disaster.

30 citations

Book ChapterDOI
01 Jan 2009
TL;DR: The Byzantine-Arab relations between the 7th and 9th centuries were characterized by a finely tuned link between domestic strife and the external fortunes of war and diplomacy as discussed by the authors, and the fitful involvement of both polities' leaders with their armed forces, without exercise of personal command.
Abstract: introduction Two features characterise Byzantine–Muslim relations between the seventh and ninth century: a finely tuned link between domestic strife and the external fortunes of war and diplomacy; and the fitful involvement of both polities’ leaders with their armed forces, without exercise of personal command. The Arabs’ dramatic conquest of Byzantium’s eastern territories in the 630s was followed by four further periods of Muslim expansion; by gradual stabilisation; and then by Byzantine strengthening and eventual territorial recovery. The four periods of Muslim expansion were all brought to an end by bouts of civil war ( fitna ) among the Muslims, the first lasting from 656 until 661. The second expansionary period under the Sufyanid Umayyad caliphs was followed by almost ten years of civil war, from 683 until 692; the third, under the Marwanid caliphs – the final branch of the Umayyad dynasty – was broken by infighting for some two years between 718 and 720, only to be followed by a twenty further years or so of aggressive campaigning. The violent replacement of the Umayyads by the Abbasids in the mid-eighth century owed nothing to Byzantium, nor did it halt military and diplomatic interaction between the two polities; but it did transform Arab–Byzantine relations. the parameters of conflict The most vulnerable period for Byzantium came immediately after the disastrous battle of the river Yarmuk in 636, during the imperial succession crisis triggered by Heraclius’ death in 641 and in the earliest years of his successor Constans II (641–68) (see above, pp. 230–1). After the withdrawal of their armies from Syria and northern Mesopotamia, the Byzantines had managed to regroup by the late 630s and early 640s and create new Anatolian defences, taking advantage of the Taurus mountains and key fortified points in the interior. Although limited truces had previously been struck with the Arabs, no formal, linear frontier was ever established and hostilities persisted. Fortunately for the Byzantines, the Muslims had priorities elsewhere.

29 citations