Podcast

Episode 128 – The Prudent Course

Byzantine fleet attack Rus ships (found on facebook page 'Byzantine Military History')

Byzantine fleet attack Rus ships (found on facebook page ‘Byzantine Military History’)

Surrender of the Mandylion from the Madrid copy of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes

Surrender of the Mandylion from the Madrid copy of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes

A Rus raid delays John Kourkouas from leading a raid into Syria. When he does though he captures the sacred Mandylion and brings it back to the capital. Soon afterwards though he and Romanus are ousted from power.

Period: 941-945

Download: The Prudent Course

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Episode 127 – Melitene

Capture of Melitene from the Madrid copy of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes

Capture of Melitene from the Madrid copy of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes

John Kourkouas captures Melitene, providing the Empire with its first eastern conquest in centuries. The Islamic world is alarmed at this news and the Hamdanid family begin to provide resistance. However their preoccupation with Baghdad means they may have already conceded the mountains to the Romans.

Period: 931-940

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Episode 126 – Attract and Repel

Use of a portable Byzantine flamethrower for Greek fire from atop a flying bridge against a castle. Illumination from the Poliorcetica of Hero of Byzantium.

Use of a portable Byzantine flamethrower for Greek fire from atop a flying bridge against a castle. Illumination from the Poliorcetica of Hero of Byzantium.

927-8 was a terrible winter. The suffering of the common people led many to sell their farms to their wealthy neighbours. Romanus legislated quickly to put a stop to it. Meanwhile John Kourkouas led the army into Armenia with Melitene in his sights.

Period: 927-931

Download: Attract and Repel

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Episode 125 – A Tsar is Born

Romanos Lecapenus from 'Rulers of the Byzantine Empire" published by Kibea

Romanos Lecapenus from ‘Rulers of the Byzantine Empire” published by Kibea

Back in the tent with Symeon and Nicholas we learn that a title was granted that day. Symeon wanted to be hailed as Emperor. Wrangling over this title would lead to another decade of war before the two sides could come together.

Period: 913-927

Download: A Tsar is Born

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Episode 124 – A Roman Story

Mosaic of Alexander from the Hagia Sophia

Mosaic of Alexander from the Hagia Sophia

The new Emperor Alexander dies after only a year on the throne. The next six years see an interregnum as the Patriarch, Empress and leading Generals vie to become the guardian to young Constantine VII.

Period: 912-919

Download: A Roman Story

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Episode 123 – Dramatis Personae

Patriarch Nicholas Mystikos

Patriarch Nicholas Mystikos

We review the players in the impending struggle over the throne. And answer some more listener questions on the way.

Period: 802-912

Download: Dramatis Personae

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Episode 122 – Questions V

Byzantine Flag

Byzantine Flag

I answer more of your questions including sports, Iconoclasm, prices, symbols, literature and more.

Period: 802-912

Download: Questions V

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Episode 121 – The Roman Army in 900AD

The Themes c950AD

The Themes c950AD

The Empire c912 AD

The Empire c912 AD

Byzantine Themes c900 from Palgrave Atlas of Byzantine History

Byzantine Themes c920AD from Palgrave Atlas of Byzantine History

Aside from the rise of the landed magnates there have been some other important changes in the Roman military in the past century. We cover the Themes, recruitment, payment, skirmishing and all the rest.

Period: 802-912

Download: The Roman Army in 900AD

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Episode 120 – The Magnates

Anatolian plateau (Polatli near Ankara from doshgoeseast.blogspot.co.uk)

Anatolian plateau (Polatli near Ankara from doshgoeseast.blogspot.co.uk)

The fruits of the recovery were unevenly distributed. The wealthy landowners of the plateau were building huge estates and developing family histories to go with them.

Period: 802-912

Download: The Magnates

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Episode 119 – Follow the Money

The Forum of Constantine by Antoine Helbert (antoine-helbert.com)

The Forum of Constantine by Antoine Helbert (antoine-helbert.com)

We explore arguments for and against the idea that commerce was a huge source of revenue for Byzantium.

Period: 802-912

Download: Follow the Money

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