The Byzantine Revival, 780-842 MOBI ✓ The Byzantine

The Byzantine Revival, 780-842 [PDF / Epub] ☄ The Byzantine Revival, 780-842 By Warren Treadgold – This is the story of how the Byzantine Empire led by a succession of extraordinary rulers emerged from a long decline to reclaim its place as a leading state of the medieval world This is a work of pa This is the story of how the Byzantine Empire led by a succession of extraordinary rulers emerged from a long decline to reclaim its place as a leading state of the medieval world This is a work of painstaking and The Byzantine eBook õ substantive scholarship that should long remain the authoritative work on the periodThe illustrations have been carefully selected and nicely reproduced The publisher should be complimented on producing a handsome volume American Historical Review.

10 thoughts on “The Byzantine Revival, 780-842

  1. Artur Olczyk Artur Olczyk says:

    Historians of religion whose works meet on the intersection of history of religiontheology and socio political history tend to consider the era of Iconoclast emperors VIII IX with certain time intervals and their political endeavors solely in terms of the heresy itself and paint rather derogatory picture of Byzantine politics and society of the Iconoclast period Treadgold whom I've been holding in high esteem since the reading of his History of the Byzantine State and Society draws somewhat different conclusions with regard to the said period He shows that Iconoclasm opposition to the use and misuse of icons and other religious images was largely irrelevant in terms of the Byzantine external politics and that Byzantium's cultural and social life was far from stagnant eitherIncreases in economic prosperity military power and even literary education are fact under the rule of the Iconoclast emperors Also as the author rightly points out the revival of a state its administrative military and legal institutions doesn't need to accompany the revival of the people living with its boundaries as they grow poorer and fewer in numbers Actually this had been the case at least twice prior to the period in uestion The Eastern Empire of the fourth and sixth centuries grew prosperous and larger in territory while its subjects grew weaker both politically and socially The reverse was also true as most Byzantines in the eleventh and twelfth centuries became richer urbanized and educated while the Empire shrank territorially and its institutions disintegratedThe Arab conuests the Bulgarian defeats and internal turmoils notwithstanding the state managed to revive nonetheless as it endured losses without permanent damage Certain emperors such as Nicephorus I or Theophilus placed Byzantium on the path of economic prosperity simultaneously reconuering lands lost to the Arabs or the SlavsWhile the process of multiplication of provinces which occurred during the eigth and ninth centuries might be a proof for particularization deepening bureaucratization of the Empire and the undermining of the central authority it is also a proof for the emperors' ability to take administrative issues into their own hands and execute their will It is also evident that the Byzantines were resourceful enough to respond to defensive problems of different sorts as each new theme an administrative and military unit of territory mirrored the oddities of each regionReading books on Byzantine history I can't help but wonder how the Byzantine state managed to survive for such a long period of time surrounded by external enemies the Arabs being the most formidable ones and continuously shaken by internal struggles for power It looks like it was precisely the ability to revive itself time and time again that granted Byzantium their long existence This is also Treadgold's main theme of the book He takes on multiple facets of the Byzantine Empire such as military campaigns administrative and legal issues cultural matters and religion deeply embedded into the very fabric of the state and takes the reader on a tour around one of the most exciting political entities that ever existed

  2. Zachary Zachary says:

    One of the most remarkable aspects of the Roman Empire was its ability to recover again and again and again from what seemed to be spirals of utter destruction of the sort that killed so many other polities Each time it transformed on the fly and rose again different but still going The Crisis of the Third Century is the most famous of these of course the empire nearly fragmenting before the Illyrian emperors put it back on firm footing albeit something very different from what it was In the invasions and instability of the fifth century it sometimes looked like all was lost again the western empire fell and there was fear the east would go with it But the east endured and even retook a lot of the lost territory under Justinian Under Heraclius Persia seemed to be on the verge of destroying the now Constantinople centered empire but the empire came back Then the Muslim Caliphate rose taking most of the empire's territory For than a century after that the survival of the empire seemed touch and go as resources dwindled the economy collapsed and learning declined But the thing is that wasn't the end Not at all In the remarkable period covered by this wonderfully written incisive and freuently witty book Warren Treadgold one of the best historians of the Byzantine phase of the Roman empire describes how the tottering empire regained its footing transformed strengthened and then started growing again reversing decline to march into a new golden age and another almost 700 years of life The period was one of fascinating figures from Irene the iron willed first empress regnant of Roman history to Nikephoros I the unpopular but brilliantly far sighted reformer to Theophilos the young exuberant emperor who closed the time Treadwell tells the story as it should be making sure to go into the background and analysis without losing sight of the drama of it all I am struck most by his description of Nikephoros as he is one of those emperors few ever think of but his reform of the economy bureaucracy and system of taxation really set the stage for the golden age to come Without him and his unpopular but necessary reforms there could never have been the exuberant time of Theophilos nor the resources for his wholesale reorganization of the army into something responsive and giving the nascent form to what would become the force of reconuest in the next century Of course none of this could have happened without Irene who shepherded the empire out of the morass of iconoclasm and began the healing of the rift in society that controversy caused Even when it rose again its roots were shallow and it died again uickly after the passing of Theophilos This was a period of remarkable happenings intriguing personality and Treadgold describes it so very well He also does well to show how fragile the revival was thereby making it all the remarkable This was a period of revival but revival amidst constant disasters and setbacks not to mention multiple conspiracies violent and sudden overthrows of multiple emperors that could have easily led things to go the other way I came away from this book all the in love with Byzantium and all the most astonished with its achievement as the last of the ancients the shining jewel amidst the sometimes murk of the medieval world Highly highly recommended

  3. Alexander Alexander says:

    Fantastic and informative history of a key period of Byzantine history chronicling how the empire turned things around and renewed itself

  4. Keith Keith says:

    Yes I am a nerd when it comes to Byzantium

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