Byzantinistik Message Board


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Byzantinistik Message Board

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1thecardiffgiant First Message
Jul 27, 2006, 9:06am

I'm a fairly recent convert to Byzantine Studies having spent most of my academic career focusing on Hellenistic poetry. My MA thesis on Nicander of Colophon, soon to be completed, led me from an illuminated manuscript of the 9th century, to Byzantine letters of the 12th. I've purchased every book on the subject that I've come across at local book sales, usually for no more than a dollar, and stopped by the famed William H. Allen in Philadelphia to pick up Ostrogorsky's History of the Byzantine State and Vasiliev's History of the Byzantine Empire, each in excellent condition and at a very good price.

The more I read of Byzantine letters the more interested I am in the subject. People like Michael Choniates are fascinating and more accessible than those of greater antiquity. It doesn't hurt that the field is still comparatively open.

Jul 31, 2006, 2:19am

I find the Byzantine Empire fascinating but why? A mixture I suppose of its ancinet lineage, with men proclaiming themselves the successors of Augustus some 1400 years after his death, their place as a bridge betwen the ancient and the modern, their position as the vital shield of Europe from Islam, and the beauty of Constantinople. Of course there is much more, and I found John Julius Norwich an entertaining introduction to its complexities; now moving into a deeper analysis and appreciation of this society.

3dragosbcu First Message
Oct 13, 2007, 10:22am

if you can read the history of byzantine empire written by A. Vasiliev. it is the best

Sep 2, 2013, 4:09pm

An interesting work written in Byzantium but translated into English is "Timarion". Though we don't know who the author was, it's a book revealing a lighter side to written medieval Greek literature. It's got a lot of footnotes, but the picture it conveys is of a livelier culture than we usually associate with the writings of the great City.