Byzantine Merchandise

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All Bonus Episodes are moving to Patreon

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Episode 259 – The Fourth Crusade (Part 1)

The Crusaders camped opposite the Blachernae Palace (above)

Pope Innocent calls for a new Crusade to retake Jerusalem. A group of French Knights decide to form an expedition to Egypt and make a deal with Venice to transport them. But when they can’t pay the bill the mission goes awry and ends up at Constantinople.

Period: 1198-1203

Pic: Dandolo brings the plan for the Fourth Crusade to the people of Venice (by Gustave Dore)

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Episode 258 – Almost Ungovernable

Alexios Angelos faces down one internal rebellion after another as the Roman Empire continues to contract. The biggest threat to his throne comes from disgruntled aristocrats and the people of Constantinople.

Period: 1195-1202

Pic: Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor, who demanded money from the Romans to fund his Crusade (from the Codex Manesse, c. 1304)

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Episode 257 – What Could Be More Trustworthy than a Brother?

Isaac Angelos does his best to secure his position and confront the Bulgarians. But he is overthrown by his brother at the head of a coalition of aristocratic families.

Period: 1189-95

Pic: Alexios III Angelos (Miniature portrait from a 15th-century codex containing a copy of the Extracts of the History by Joannes Zonaras)

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Episode 256 – The Third Crusade (part 2)

Frederick Barbarossa leads his contingent across Anatolia. He must confront the Turks along the way and capture Iconium. Meanwhile the Kings of England and France land in the Holy Land and take on Saladin.

Period: 1188-89

Pic: The death of Frederick Barbarossa by H.Vogel (19th century)

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Episode 255 – The Third Crusade (part 1)

The routes of the German, French and English Kings during the Third Crusade (from erenow.net)

As soon as news reached the West that Jerusalem had fallen a new Crusade was called. The German, French and English Kings all led armies East but only Frederick Barbarossa went by land. He led a large army across the Balkans towards Constantinople and Isaac Angelos had to decided whether to treat him as friend or foe.

Period: 1188-89

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Episode 254 – Saladin the Strategist with Ben Duval

I speak to author Ben Duval, author of the book: “Saladin the Strategist: How the Crusaders Lost the Holy Land.”

We go through Saladin’s career starting with how he captured Egypt. Then how he built the coalition which defeated the Crusaders. Finally we watch on as he traps them at Hattin and then sweeps across the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

Buy the book here, follow Ben on twitter @byzantinemporia and find out more about his work here.

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Episode 253 – The Second Bulgarian Empire

Isaac Angelos begins his reign by defeating the Normans and making as many alliances as he can to secure his position. Unfortunately he rejects an offer from two Vlach Chieftains Peter and Asen. They turn on the Romans and found the Second Bulgarian Empire north of the Haemus Mountains.

Period: 1185-87

Pic: Isaac II Angelos (Miniature portrait from a 15th-century codex containing a copy of the Extracts of the History by Joannes Zonaras)

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Episode 252 – The Sack of Thessalonica

Killing of Stephen Hagiochristophorites by Isaac Angelos, c. 1473, miniature by Jean Colombe in Les Passages d’outremerBNF.

A 15th century depiction of the death of Andronikos. Original in the Bibliothèque Nationale, France.

Andronikos continues to terrorise his relatives. Many leave Byzantium seeking help from foreign courts. One arrives in Sicily and calls on the Normans to help him. They launch an invasion and sack the city of Thessalonica.

Period: 1184-85

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Episode 251 – A Lion Pouncing on a Large Prey

When Manuel Komnenos died he left an 11 year old son as his heir. The Regency Council set up to protect him fails. Manuel’s cousin Andronikos seizes the throne instead and begins a reign of terror.

Period: 1180-83

Pic: Andronikos I Komnenos. Miniature portrait from a 15th-century codex containing a copy of the Extracts of the History by Joannes Zonaras

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Update on my progress

Hello everyone,

My baby girl was born in early October and I’m now 3 weeks into being a parent. I am very tired as you can imagine. She is happy and healthy so far which is wonderful and I’m really grateful for all your kind messages.

Here’s an update on my progress: I have finished writing all the episodes between Manuel’s death and the 4th Crusade. The sack of Constantinople will be one of those 2 hour long episodes which takes several weeks to put together.

The plan is to wait until all the episodes are finished before I release any. So that you get a complete story told one week at a time – rather than having big gaps between episodes.

As soon as I can I will finish the 4th Crusade and you will get all these episodes in a once a week ‘Season’ of podcasts. Thanks so much for your patience and kind support.

Best wishes,

Robin

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