Byzantine Stories Episode 1 – John Chrysostom. Parts 2, 3 and 4.

 Jean-Paul Laurens 19th century painting of John confronting the Empress Eudoxia. Very dramatic but nothing like this actually happened.

Jean-Paul Laurens 19th century painting of John confronting the Empress Eudoxia. Very dramatic but nothing like this actually happened.

John Chrysostom (integratedcatholiclife.org)

John Chrysostom (integratedcatholiclife.org)

John Chrysostom (from oca.org)

John Chrysostom (from oca.org)

St John Chrysostom in a mosaic from the Hagia Sophia

St John Chrysostom in a mosaic from the Hagia Sophia

John from an 11th-century soapstone (now in the Louvre)

John from an 11th-century soapstone (now in the Louvre)

A sculpture of John in Saint Patrick's Cathedral, New York City

A sculpture of John in Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, New York City

Part 2 – Building Orthodoxy (349-397)

We follow John’s early life and education and his decision to disappear into the wilderness during his 20s. He then returns to Antioch to become a Priest and develop into the Golden Mouth.

Part 3 – The Snake Pit (397-400)

John is called to become Bishop of Constantinople and finds out that the politics in the capital is ruthless and unforgiving.

Part 4 – A Byzantine Story (400-407)

After a series of top officials lose their lives to the whims of Arcadius’ court John becomes the latest target. Only his congregation stand between him and exile or worse.

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Categories: Byzantine Stories | 1 Comment

Episode 77 – Leo and Irene (Fundraising Episode)

Solidus of Leo IV. That's Leo on the left with his son Constantine next to him (no beard). On the reverse are Leo III and Constantine V (from Dumbarton Oaks collection)

Solidus of Leo IV. That’s Leo on the left with his son Constantine next to him (no beard). On the reverse are Leo III and Constantine V (from Dumbarton Oaks collection)

Leo IV begins his reign promisingly before dying at the age of 30. He would be replaced in power by his wife Irene. We look at the rituals an Empress would be forced to go through to be accepted into the Palace to try and gain an insight into Irene’s position as regent.

Period: 775-780

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Categories: Podcast | 4 Comments

Byzantine Stories Episode 1 – John Chrysostom. Part 1 – Welcome to Antioch

Ancient Antioch (pre 350AD) by kayhankaplan (deviantart.com)

Ancient Antioch (pre 350AD) by kayhankaplan (deviantart.com)

Ancient Antioch from above (pre 350AD) by kayhankaplan (deviantart.com).jpg

Ancient Antioch from above (pre 350AD) by kayhankaplan (deviantart.com).jpg

Engraving of Antioch by William Miller from a sketch by Byam Martin in 1866

Engraving of Antioch by William Miller from a sketch by Byam Martin in 1866

Map of Antioch (mappery.com)

Map of Antioch (mappery.com)

An introduction to life in Antioch in 350AD. Amidst the great buildings live the beleaguered poor of the Roman world. The Christians were destined to care for and convert these people but in 350AD the threat of losing souls to Judaism or Paganism was real.

Period: 349-350 AD

Download: Welcome to Antioch

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Categories: Byzantine Stories | 4 Comments

An update on the Fundraising Sale and the new RSS Feed

Listen to the latest podcast to find out about the new fundraising sale and your chance to get new episodes of “The History of Byzantium.”

Download: An update on the Fundraising Sale and the new RSS Feed

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Episode 76 – The Dung Named

The interior of the Hagia Eirene restored by Constantine V (Wikipedia)

The interior of the Hagia Eirene restored by Constantine V (Wikipedia)

Constantine V faces a conspiracy against his throne and his response is violent. He continues to rebuild his capital and campaign against the Bulgars. Yet despite all his success he was remembered as the Dung named.

Period: 765-775

Download: The Dung Named

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Episode 75 – The Headless Council

The Balkan Mountains today (from maudestandard.wordpress.com)

The Balkan Mountains today (from maudestandard.wordpress.com)

Constantine V gathers an Ecumenical Council to gain acceptance for his views on the place of icons. He also goes to war with the Bulgar Khanate. We close by discussing his personal life and the capture of Ravenna by the Lombards.

Period: 755-765

Download: The Headless Council

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Episode 74 – The Quest for Legitimacy

Constantine V by Plamen Vulchev (from 'Rulers of the Byzantine Empire' published by KIBEA)

Constantine V by Plamen Vulchev (from ‘Rulers of the Byzantine Empire’ published by KIBEA)

Constantine V (From the Modena manuscript, Chronicle of John Zonaras)

Constantine V (From the Modena manuscript, Chronicle of John Zonaras)

Constantine V (Dumbarton Oaks coin collection)

Constantine V (Dumbarton Oaks coin collection)

Constantine V becomes Emperor but is immediately forced into a two year civil war. Once back in power we follow his reorganisation of the army and military planning in the face of the Caliphate’s own internal struggles.

Period: 741-755

Download: The Quest for Legitimacy

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An interview with Robert Horvat of thehistoryofthebyzantineempire.com

A written interview with me has just gone online at Robert Horvat’s excellent blog thehistoryofthebyzantineempire.com. You can read it here

You can also see pictures of my bookshelf and recording equipment. As well as my current list of Top 5 Emperors. You can begin sending the hate mail now because Justinian isn’t on it and Heraclius is not number one.

Check out Robert’s blog while you’re there. He does an excellent job writing about Byzantium and he also runs the Google Plus group “The History of the Byzantine Empire.

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Episode 73 – Leo’s Reign in the 730s

The city of Afyonkarahisar in Turkey. This is the site of Akroinon where Leo won his victory in 740.

The city of Afyonkarahisar in Turkey. This is the site of Akroinon where Leo won his victory in 740.

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We look at Leo’s second decade in power. First tracing the military and political developments and then going back to look at the development of Iconoclasm.

Period: 730-741

Download: Leo’s Reign in the 730s

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Categories: Podcast | 6 Comments

Episode 72 – Leo’s Reign in the 720s

The Miliaresion of Leo III and Constantine V (Wikipedia)

The Miliaresion of Leo III and Constantine V (Wikipedia)

We look at Leo’s first decade in power. First tracing the military and political developments and then going back to look at domestic policies.

Period: 718-729

Download: Leo’s Reign in the 720s

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Categories: Podcast | 6 Comments

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