“The History of Byzantium” is a podcast dedicated to the story of the Roman Empire from the collapse of the West in 476 to the fall of Constantinople in 1453. Byzantine history is fascinating, world changing and largely forgotten. Listen and discover who they were.

The show was created to continue the narrative established by Mike Duncan’s wonderful podcast The History of Rome.” I have tried to remain faithful to Mike’s structure of half hour instalments told from a state-centric perspective. My innovation is to pause the narrative at the end of each century to take time to cover wider issues to do with Byzantium. I’ve also taken time to produce feature length episodes on the most dramatic incidents.

After a year of research and recording I asked the audience to support me by purchasing episode 28 (May 2013). Making the podcast had begun taking up almost half of each week. Thankfully the listeners responded and donated and I was able to keep going for another two years. By then though the podcast had occupied more like 70% of my time. So I offered listeners a yearly subscription (July 2015) to support me in exchange for six special episodes each year. So far I’m able to make a living podcasting which is a huge privilege.

I continue to search for the most interesting and entertaining way to communicate the Byzantine story. With listener support I’m confident that we will reach 1453 with a complete audio narrative of the whole sweep of Roman history.

Robin Pierson is from London in the UK. He writes about American TV shows at thetvcritic.org and works for his father (an actor). Contact Robin at thehistoryofbyzantium at gmail.com (all one word with @ instead of at) or on Twitter.


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  1. Marcio

    Hey Robin! Thank you so much for your incredible work. Your podcast is high quality and I recommend it to my friends. I just listened to the episode 195 and I can’t wait for the next ones! When I get a job, the first thing I will do will be to buy the episodes for sale.

  2. Omar

    Can you make it much easier to find and download back episodes? I’m just starting your podcast, and it’s a little difficult to navigate your site.
    The History of Philosophy without any gaps site allows you to download whole sections in a single zip. That would be ideal.

  3. Renee Malaki

    Robin, I am interested in the potential spring of 2020 tour. Is there going to be a trip and, if so what are the anticipated dates?

  4. Joel

    Hi Robin.
    I love the show. I’ve been listening to the House of War episode and the To the City episodes nearly every day at work for the last month. I really love them and was wondering if there was still a way to get the extra three House of War style episodes that you did for the Kickstarter campaign. Are they in the purchase backlog of episodes? I wasn’t a listener at the time so I missed out, and I would love to get them.
    Thanks for everything you do in bringing Roman history to life.

    • Hey Joel, I’m so glad you enjoy those. And yes just drop me an email (thehistoryofbyzantium at gmail.com) and I’ll get you access to those episodes. They do not yet exist so no hurry 🙂

  5. Robert McDonald

    Robin, my name is Robert , I’m a history major at CSU Channel Islands. I’m a huge fan of your podcast and was inspired to write my research paper on the Byzantine Empire. I have been reading the Alexiad and several secondary histories about the empire. I am writing about the relationship between the Romans and the crusaders. However, I wanted to contact you to see if you have any suggestions on documents you would recommend. Thank you for doing this podcast, you are doing an amazing job!

  6. Byron Ransom

    Robin! I’ve been a big fan of the podcast for years and am definitely ready to pay up for the documentary you did in Constantinople. There is so little quality content documenting what remains of the Roman city, so I would love anything you filmed. Please let me know how I can get my hands on the content.

    By the way, depending how far you want to take this, you could lead a complete re-discovery of Roman Turkey. I know there is more sensitivity and danger in exploring parts of it these days than in years past, but there are probably more un-excavated and under-publicized Roman ruins in that country than anywhere else.


  7. Adamantios

    Congratulations for your show. Will there be new (main) episodes (not backer rewards etc) after Ep.195 covering period 1080 onwards?

  8. Rachel Lawrence

    Hi Robin,
    I finished all of the episodes a few weeks ago and am anxiously waiting for 2020, but I certainly hope you are resting and recuperating. I am a historian and archaeologist who has specialized in Eastern European later medieval history, and it is so, so wonderful that you do this podcast. Thank you for all that you do. Take care!

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