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Nonnosus

(148 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Author of a lost Greek report on the travels of a legation to the ruler of Kinda in central Arabia and then to Ethiopia and southern Arabia in the year AD 530/1, the existence of which is known only from the  ‘Library of Photius (cod. 3). Similar journeys had been undertaken by 502 by N.'s grandfather Euphrasius, and several in 524 and later by his father Abram. According to Photius, the report emphasised the courage of N. in hazardous situations and contained information on the r…

Sclavinia

(283 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] (Σκλαβηνία/ Sklabēnía, Latin Sclavinia). A term, common since the 6th cent. AD in Greek and Latin, derived from the demonym Σκλαβηνοί/ Sklabēnoí or Sclavi (Slavs) and used to describe communities formed of Slav tribes inside and outside formerly Roman territories in the Balkan peninsula, Carinthia, Pannonia and Transsylvania. They were for the most part organised in warlike tribal associations without fixed territorial borders and also included members of non-Slavonic peoples; some were autonomous, othe…

Moschopoulos, Manuel

(160 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Byzantine philologist, lived c. AD 1265-1316, a pupil of Maximus Planudes. He was the author of the Erōtḗmata grammatiká (Ἐρωτήματα γραμματικά), a Greek grammar in the form of a dialogue, which was still respected by the early Humanists, and scholia on numerous ancient texts, including the first two books of the Iliad, Hesiod's Érga kai hēmérai, Pindar's ‘Olympian Odes, on the Byzantine Triad of Euripides ( Hekábē, Oréstēs, Phoiníssai) and of Sophocles ( Aías, Ēléktra, Oidípous Týrannos), also on works by Aristophanes [3], by Theocritus, the Batrachomyomachía , etc.…

Syrian dynasty

(796 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Dynasty (AD 717 to 802) during the Byzantine Empire (Byzantium), traditionally referred to as the 'Isaurian dynasty' (Isaurian emperors). The name is derived from the origin of its founder, Leo [6] III, who was from Germanicaea (modern-day Maraş) in northern Syria. The term 'Isaurian dynasty' goes back to the Chronicle of Theophanes (391,6 de Boor), according to which the emperor Leo III came from Isauria; its use was encouraged in polemics by later Byzantine historians opposing the iconoclastic religious policy of the SD. Durin…

Kaminiates, Iohannes

(128 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Author of an account of the conquest of Thessalonica by the Arabs in AD 904. Allegedly, K. was a cleric and an eyewitness of the events. The narrative of the conquest is preceded by a description of the city. The authenticity has been questioned in recent times; in reality, a text originating shortly after 904 was probably revised and enriched with contemporary details under the influence of the conquest of Thessalonica by the Ottomans in 1430. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography G. Böhlig (ed.), Ioannes Caminiates, De expugnatione Thessalonicae, 1973 Id., Die Einn…

Military lands

(225 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Inheritable lands owned by Byzantine soldiers, intended to enable them to defray their cost of living and maintain their accoutrements and a horse during times of peace. The institution of ML probably goes back to the 7th cent. AD, when the Byzantine state, as a result of economic necessity resulting from the wars against the Arabs, was forced to remunerate soldiers by land grants instead of cash [3. 619-621]. The term ML (στρατιωτικὰ κτήματα/ stratiōtikà ktḗmata) first appears in the 10th century in a novella of Constantine [9] VII (944-959), through wh…

Nomos stratiotikos

(129 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] (νόμος στρατιωτικός; nómos stratiōtikós). Byzantine collection of regulations on ‘military law’  compiled in the 6th and 8th cents. AD from the Corpus iuris civilis and other sources. The NS has survived in various versions, sometimes in military manuals, sometimes as an appendix to several Middle Byzantine statute books, frequently together with the nómos nautikós (‘maritime law’). According to the NS, crimes such as refusing to obey orders, desertion and looting were to be punished by death in wartime; offences in times of peace w…

Romania

(128 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Colloquial Latin term for the Roman Empire, documented from the 4th cent. AD, in Greek (Ῥωμανία/ Rhōmanía) from the 6th cent. AD. In the western Middle Ages, the term refers merely to the area of the former Exarchate of Ravenna, present-day Romagna. In the east, the term continued to be reused in vernacular texts to refer to the Byzantine Empire (Byzantium) and was transferred from there, in the 11th cent., to the Sultanate of the Seljuq Turks of 'Rūm' in Asia Minor and in the 13th cent. to the so-called Latin Empire of the Crusaders in Constantinople and Greece. Berger, Albrec…

Syncellus

(321 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] [1] see Michael [2] See Michael [2]. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) [German version] [2] Georgius S. (Γεώργιος Σύνκελλος; Geṓrgios Sýnkellos). Author of a Byzantine world-chronicle, written c. AD 810, extending from the creation of the world until the beginning of the reign of Diocletianus in AD 284. Little is known about his life; he lived for quite a long time as a monk in a monastery in Palestine and later became σύγκελλος/ sýnkellos ('cell companion', i.e. assistant and private secretary) of the patriarch Tarasius of Constantinople. The chronicle Ἐκλογὴ χρονογραφίας/ E…

Theme

(472 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] (θέμα /théma, pl. thémata; literally: 'area of deployment' [6]). Byzantine administrative districts that replaced the Roman provincial divisions beginning in the 7th cent. AD: After the loss of Egypt and the Middle East (mid 7th cent. AD), the Roman troops were withdrawn to Asia Minor only to be re-deployed there in the four themes of Anatolia, Armenia, Thracia and Opsikion, each under the command of a strategos (Byzantium II. D. incl. map). By the mid 8th cent., the authority of the provincial administration had been complet…

Amorion, martyrs of

(101 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Designation for a group of 42 citizens of the city of Amorion in Phrygia (Asia Minor), who were taken to the caliph's residence in Samarra on the Euphrates after the Arab conquest in AD 838 and were executed there in 845. Their Greek vita, which was written by the monk Euodius soon thereafter, bears strongly legendary traits. The main focus lies with a theological discussion between the captives and their guards; the martyrs are executed because they refuse to convert to  Islam. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography Editions: V. Vasil'ev, P. Nikitin (ed.), Skazanija…

Opsikion

(88 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] (ὀψίκιον/ opsíkion). Originally a term for a troop detachment (Latin obsequium), from c. 680 AD one of the four original themes ( thḗma ) of the Byzantine Empire in Asia Minor. It comprised the northern part of the Dardanelles peninsula as far as the River Halys with a capital at Ancyra. Later it was reduced in size and limited in the west, with Nicaea [5] as its capital. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography R. Hiss, s.v. O., LMA 6, 1418f.  C.F.W. Foss, s.v. O., ODB 3, 1528f.

Themata, naval

(114 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] Themes of the Byzantine Empire, established from the early 8th cent. AD for the construction and maintenance of a fleet. The most significant of them comprised the whole Mediterranean coast of Asia Minor from Miletus to Cilicia. The capital was probably Attaleia [1], but the crews were predominantly from the mountainous hinterland in the western part of the theme, as is shown by the name 'Theme of the Cibyrrhaeoti', which can be traced to the city of Cibyra about 80 km from the sea in the Carian-Lycian border region. Theme Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography 1 H. Ahrwe…

Taktika

(326 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] [1] Military handbook Byzantine term for military handbook, cf. Taktika [2]; cf. also stratēgikón . Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) [German version] [2] Taktika of Leo Military handbook ( stratēgikón) in 20 books, written c. AD 905 by the emperor Leo [9] VI or at his command. It is to some extent based on earlier sources such as writings by Onasander [2] and the stratēgikón of Mauricius, but it also contains many contemporary passages, e.g. on the Arabs and Hungary. The work, which is preserved in two different versions, exer…

Nomos nautikos

(141 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[German version] (νόμος ναυτικός; nómos nautikós). Byzantine collection of legal rules concerning shipping, compiled in the 7th or 8th cent. AD and incorporated in the 9th cent. AD into the legal compilation of the ‘Basilica. Its traditional meaning of ‘Rhodian Sea Law’ derives from the subsequently added prologue asserting that the Roman emperors affirmed the ancient sea law of Rhodes. This statement, although mentioned in legal writings (e.g. Dig. 14,2), cannot be verified historically in any detai…

Opsikion

(75 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[English version] (ὀψίκιον). Urspr. Bezeichnung einer Truppenabteilung (lat. obsequium), seit ca. 680 n.Chr. eines der vier urspr. Themen ( thḗma ) des byz. Reichs in Kleinasien, umfaßte den Nordteil der Halbinsel von den Dardanellen bis zum Fluß Halys mit dem Hauptort Ankyra. Später wurde es verkleinert und auf den Westen mit dem Hauptort Nikaia [5] beschränkt. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography R. Hiss, s.v. O., LMA 6, 1418f.  C.F.W. Foss, s.v. O., ODB 3, 1528f.

Kaminiates, Iohannes

(114 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[English version] Verf. eines Ber. über die Eroberung von Thessalonike durch die Araber 904 n.Chr., angeblich Kleriker und Augenzeuge der Ereignisse. Der Schilderung der Eroberung geht eine Beschreibung der Stadt voraus. Die Authentizität ist in neuerer Zeit bezweifelt worden, tatsächlich wurde wohl ein kurz nach 904 entstandener Text unter dem Eindruck der Eroberung Thessalonikes durch die Osmanen 1430 überarbeitet und mit zeitgenössischen Details angereichert. Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography G. Böhlig (ed.), Ioannes Caminiates, De expugnatione Thessaloni…

Kassia

(121 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[English version] (auch Kassiane oder Eikasia). Byz. Dichterin, Adressatin eines Briefs des Theodoros Studites vom J. 816/818 n.Chr., in dem sie als Novizin bezeichnet wird, geb. also ca. 800/805. Ihre angebliche Teilnahme an einer Brautschau für Kaiser Theophilos um 821 (?) ist legendär, doch wird deren Historizität h. noch ernsthaft diskutiert. K. lebte als Äbtissin eines von ihr gegr. Klosters in Konstantinopel, wo sie nach 843 starb. Überl. sind unter ihrem Namen verschiedene liturgische Dichtung…

Romania

(113 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[English version] Umgangssprachliche lat. Bezeichnung für das Römische Reich, bezeugt seit dem 4. Jh. n. Chr., seit dem 6. Jh. auch im Griechischen (Ῥωμανία). Die Bed. verengt sich im westl. Mittelalter auf das Gebiet des früheren Exarchats von Ravenna, die h. Romagna; im Osten wird sie in volkssprachlichen Texten für das Byz. Reich (Byzantion, Byzanz) weiterverwendet und geht von dort im 11. Jh. auch auf das Sultanat der seldschukischen Türken von “Rūm” in Kleinasien, im 13. Jh. auf das sog. lat. Kaiserreich der Kreuzfahrer in Konstantinopolis und Griechenland über. Berger, Alb…

Flottenthemen

(97 words)

Author(s): Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
[English version] Themen des byz. Reichs, die seit dem frühen 8. Jh. n.Chr. zum Aufbau und Unterhalt einer Flotte eingerichtet wurden. Das bedeutendste von ihnen umfaßte die gesamte kleinasiatische Mittelmeerküste von Miletos bis zur Kilikia. Hauptort war wahrscheinlich Attaleia [1], doch kamen die Mannschaften vorwiegend aus dem gebirgigen Hinterland im westl. Teil des Themas, wie der Name “Thema der Kibyrrhaiotoi” zeigt, der auf die ca. 80 km vom Meer entfernte Stadt Kibyra im karisch-lyk. Grenzgebiet zurückgeht. Thema Berger, Albrecht (Berlin) Bibliography 1 H. Ahrweile…
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