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It’s the calm before the storm! Or rather, a lack of storms… I’ve been slowly savoring this amazing paper regarding the “Medieval Climate Anomaly” and its effect on the Byzantine coffers. It seems that right at this phase in the narrative, the climate was great and the economy was booming, as Robin has basically alluded to. Yet per this paper, “towards the end of the twelfth century, the populations of the Byzantine world were experiencing unusual climatic conditions with marked dryness and cooler phases. The weakened Byzantine socio-political system must have contributed to the events leading to the fall of Constantinople in AD 1204 and the sack of the city.”
Though this paper is ostensibly about the weirdness of the twelfth century, its rigorous collection of data regarding pollen counts, coins collected, historical and archaeological evidence, etc, goes from 850 all the way to 1300: