Family Update

My father passed away last night. I am now with my family and will be spending time with them. The podcast will be back soon. Thanks for your understanding and support.

Categories: News | 29 Comments
 
 

All Bonus Episodes are moving to Patreon

Hello everyone,

There are currently two ways to get your hands on all the bonus episodes I’ve produced over the years. One is to buy them from thehistoryofbyzantium.com. The other is to become a Patron of the show at Patreon.com.

I am making plans to switch entirely to Patreon from October 2021. The sale system here at thehistoryofbyzantium.com has served me well. But it does occasionally crash and cause other problems. So it seems sensible to slowly put it to rest and move everything over to Patreon.

The sale site will shut for good on the 23rd October 2021 so there is no rush to make the switch over and I will of course send reminders from time to time.

The new Patreon site can be found at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium

This is where things get complicated. I set up a Patreon account last year for listeners who wanted an ad-free feed. But I didn’t want to pause the narrative while I uploaded 200+ episodes. So I set up the Patreon assuming I could add the rest of the back catalogue later. Well – it turns out you can’t. You can’t edit the order of posts on Patreon which is a huge drag.

So I’ve had to set up this new Patreon account with all 200+ episodes in order with all the bonus episodes as well. And you can find that at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium. All the support tiers are exactly the same as are the prices.

What do I have to do?

If you are already a Patron at the old site you don’t need to do anything. I will continue to update that account until there are no Patrons left. But if you want to be able to binge the show from the beginning you might want to switch to the new Patreon site at some point. I’m afraid there’s no easy transfer button. You need to cancel your patronage on that account. Then wait for a new month to begin, so you aren’t charged twice, and then join the new Patreon at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium. I have no control over refunds from Patreon so please wait for a new month to begin before signing up.

If you buy your episodes one at a time from thehistoryofbyzantium.com then nothing will change for you until October 2021. From then on you would need to join Patreon if you’d like to continue listening to Byzantine Stories or Fundraising episodes. Join the new Patreon anytime at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium

If you bought a subscription at thehistoryofbyzantium.com that runs out before October 2021 then nothing will change for you until then. From then on you would need to join Patreon to get more bonus episodes. Join the new Patreon anytime at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium

If you bought a subscription at thehistoryofbyzantium.com that runs out after October 2021 then you will be refunded for the amount left on your subscription when that day comes. You are also welcome to email me at anytime to get a refund and switch over to Patreon if you’d like to. Contact me at thehistoryofbyzantium at gmail.com

To differentiate the two Patreon accounts I have put up a message on the old Patreon redirecting people and I have put ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ in brackets at the title of each welcome page. So you should sign up at the Patreon which says ‘The History of Byzantium (Yes) is Creating podcasts.’ Find that page at patreon.com/historyofbyzantium

Why?

One day there will be just the one Patreon account where everyone will go to get their bonus episodes. Just like the Byzatines I need to drive these other heretical sites out of business and establish the one true Patreon.

Thanks so much for your support,
Robin

Categories: News, Podcast | 5 Comments

Episode 229 – John Komnenos with Dr Maximilian Lau

Today we talk to the man whose research has guided our last few podcasts Dr Maximilian Lau.

Dr Lau is Adjunct Professor of Economic History at Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo, and also a Research Associate in History at St Benet’s Hall, University of Oxford. He has been studying 12th century Byzantine history for many years now and the fruits of that labour can be found in his forthcoming book “Rebuilding New Rome. The Foreign Policy of John II Komnenos.”

The book is written and will be out next year and Dr Lau very generously shared it with me in advance. It’s been incredibly helpful in part because of its quality but also because it follows a format similar to our narrative episodes. It is a chronological account of John’s military and political activity with a discussion of the sources as each incident unfolds. As Dr Lau explains in the interview – John’s reign often gets short shrift in popular Byzantine books because our Roman sources cover him fairly briefly. But there are plenty of other sources to work with and Dr Lau has synthesised them to create a new history of John’s reign.

Period: 1118-1143

Stream: John Komnenos with Dr Maximilian Lau

Download: John Komnenos with Dr Maximilian Lau

RSS Feed: The History of Byzantium

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Podcast | 3 Comments

Episode 228 – Forgiveness not Permission

John hunting boar in Cilicia, French manuscript of the 14th Century

Last time we watched as John Komnenos attempted to untangle the Gordian knot which Anatolia had become. After campaigning against the Danishmends – John moved on to Cilicia and Antioch. The Emperor attempted to enforce his rights without angering the Latins. A trick which he failed to pull off. Today John will be forced to go through the whole process all over again. But when he reaches the gates of Antioch this time he won’t take no for an answer.

Period: 1138-1143

Stream: Forgiveness not Permission

Download: Forgiveness not Permission

RSS Feed: The History of Byzantium

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

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Categories: Podcast | 16 Comments

Episode 227 – Just Take the Damn City

Political makeup of Anatolia c1130 AD

John II Komnenos is finally free to campaign in Anatolia. If he can keep the Turks quiet then he can make it to Antioch where his real goal lies. But once there will he risk outraging Latin opinion by assaulting the city or will he negotiate a deal to bring the city back into the Empire?

Period: 1127-1138

Pic: John does battle with the defenders of Shaizar while Raymond and Joscelin sit, inactive, in their camp. French manuscript, 1338

Stream: Just Take the Damn City

Download: Just Take the Damn City

RSS Feed: The History of Byzantium

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Podcast | 2 Comments

Episode 226 – A Crowded Chessboard

John II Komnenos takes charge of the Empire and campaigns immediately in Anatolia. But he is soon beset by the complications of the new position Byzantium finds itself in. Serbians, Steppe tribes, Hungarians and Venetians all demand his attention. Enemies and allies are crowding the chess board and John must make each move very carefully.

Period: 1118-1127

Stream: A Crowded Chessboard

Download: A Crowded Chessboard

RSS Feed: The History of Byzantium

Picture of John and Irene by Antoine Helbert (www.antoine-helbert.com)

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Byzantine Stories. Episode 10 – Kekaumenos: A Provincial Magnate

In our 10th Byzantine Story we look at the life of a provincial magnate. Our way into this world is a text called ‘Advice and Anecdotes’ written by a man named Kekaumenos. He lived in the period after Basil II’s death (1020s-1070s) and was a General and governor.

He wrote this text at the end of his life to give advice to those who had to navigate the Imperial system. It gives us invaluable insights into provincial life and the pressures a man in his position faced.

To listen to the episode please sign up for the Ad-Free Bonus Feed at Patreon.

The Incidental Music used is “Future Idyll” from Purple-Planet.com

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Byzantine Stories | 9 Comments

Byzantine Stories. Episode 9 – Women in the Byzantine World. Part 3 – The Empress

Solidus of the Empress Pulcheria
The Trier Ivory (we believe depicting Pulcheria receiving the relics of St Stephen)

In part three we look at the role of Empress. The one position in society where a woman could attain true power over men. We also look at the life story of the 5th century Empress Aelia Pulcheria – the woman who helped define the role.

To listen to the episode please sign up for the Ad-Free Bonus Feed at Patreon.

The Incidental Music used is “Introspection” from Purple-Planet.com

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Byzantine Stories | 2 Comments

Byzantine Stories. Episode 9 – Women in the Byzantine World. Part 2 – The Convent

In part 2 we visit the Byzantine convent. A place where women could escape the traditional roles society expected of them.

We also hear the life stories of two more female Saints. These tales may be the closest we get to the lives of real middle-Byzantine women.

Pic: Saint Theodora of Thessalonica

To listen to the episode please sign up for the Ad-Free Bonus Feed at Patreon.

The Incidental Music used is “Introspection” from Purple-Planet.com

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Byzantine Stories | Leave a comment

Byzantine Stories. Episode 9 – Women in the Byzantine World. Part 1 – Immense and Immeasurable

As you may know I have already produced three episodes about Women in the Roman World which are available for you on the Ad-Free Bonus Feed at Patreon.

I now present three more episodes about Women in the Byzantine World. And these episodes are very much a continuation of that series. In part one we talk about how the arrival of Christianity affected Roman women. We also hear a couple of Saints’ Lives. These tales give us a rare glimpse of how women appeared in popular culture.

This first episode is free but parts 2 and 3 are only available on the Ad-Free Bonus Feed at Patreon.

Pic: Saint Mary of Egypt, French, 15th century (British Library)

Thanks to the kind listeners who have pointed out that the ‘Immaculate Conception’ is a Catholic concept and not necessarily accepted by the Orthodox. This was entirely my fault, I was looking for a synonym for virgin birth and have blundered.

Download: Byzantine Stories. Episode 9 – Women in the Byzantine World. Part 1 – Immense and Immeasurable

RSS Feed: The History of Byzantium

The Incidental Music used is “Introspection” from Purple-Planet.com

If you want to send in feedback to the podcast:

– Either comment on this post.

– Or on the facebook page.

– Leave a review on Itunes.

– Follow me on Twitter or Instagram

Categories: Byzantine Stories | 2 Comments

When will the next episode of the podcast be?

Hello everyone,

My father has just been diagnosed with cancer. It’s serious and has happened very quickly. Further disruption to the schedule is inevitable.

I am working on one more Byzantine Story before the narrative will resume.

Thanks for your understanding,

Robin

Categories: News | 29 Comments

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