Guide History of the Byzantine Empire, 324-1453, vol. I

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Write a review. See any care plans, options and policies that may be associated with this product. Email address. Please enter a valid email address. Walmart Services. Get to Know Us. Customer Service. In The Spotlight. Shop Our Brands. Vasiliev directly addresses one controversial point, namely that the Byzantine Empire was merely a continuation of the Roman Empire, especially in a theological and legal sense.

This reveals some striking historical phenomena, especially with relations between Constantinople and western polities such as the Ostrogothic Kingdom in Italy, the Frankish empire, and the Holy Roman Empire. His work is structured in chapters. Aside from the first chapter, each chapter begins with a chronological look at geopolitics and history at-large, then focuses on ecclesiastical, economic, social, and artistic themes usually in that order. Personally I was drawn to the ecclesiastical portions of each chapter, and this is essential given how at the time there was no general distinction between the political and religious spheres.

Vasiliev writes at the beginning of the 20th century, from Russia pre-Bolshevik, if I'm not mistaken , and so comes from a nation that has inherited many of the cultural and religious features of Byzantium. His citations are extensive. You must buy both volumes, as the bibliography and appendix are in the 2nd volume only. What is unfortunate is that most of the citations are not accessible to the contemporary reader, especially given most of them are preth century. A few downsides: his style can be dry at times, and he does repeat himself in a few spots.

I would say this criticism mostly applies to the 2nd volume. If you're seriously interested in Byzantium this won't hinder you whatsoever.

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For the casual reader who wants a shorter overview, I'd look elsewhere. Sep 21, AmosZhu rated it really liked it Shelves: my-major. Recommended by my tutor, and it's a quite clear book with fluent words and sentences. It introduced some sources which are really important. Furthermore, personally I like the section of "literature, learning and art" at every end of chapters.

In this term, it's quite suitable to beginners or those who are interested in that period. However, some knowledge or historical events are just a bit vague so that it's not easy for a beginner to get an overall comprehension of the history of Byzantine. Nov 27, Marks54 rated it liked it. This was the basic reference in a year long survey on Byzantium that I took at Georgetown in The transition out of the Roman era into the high point of the Byzantine Empire is a really good story and I greatly enjoyed the class.

Jun 29, Kevin rated it liked it. Little too much on art and culture and not enough on accomplishments and historical impact. All a good overview.

Spends more time describing his sources than discussing history. Feb 24, Al rated it really liked it Shelves: byzantine-history. I have the original 1 volume edition. Very good work which complements Ostrogorsky and should be read comparatively with Ostrogorsky's History of the Byzantine State. Jul 25, Avi Shmueli rated it did not like it. History writing at its worse, reads more like a historical artifact than a story or fact. Kevin rated it liked it Jun 10, Casey Knott rated it liked it Jul 07, Diehl carried the history of Byzantium down to , down to the epoch of the crusades, when a wholly new period in the history of the Near East begins.

The book gives a fine presentation not only of the political history of the Empire, but also of its internal life, social and economic structure, legislation, and finally its manifold and picturesque civilization. The book contains an excellent bibliography of primary sources as well as modern works. Diehl indicates some mistakes but concludes by pronouncing the work excellent. Stein remarked that "all serious critics agree in regretting profoundly that the History of Byzantium by Ch.

This statement is not only unjust but also inexact. Ostrogorsky written in Serbo-Croatian and translated by Grgoire. This was published in Diehl, with the collaboration of Oeconomos, described the period from to ; Guilland presented the history of Byzantium from to ; Grousset dealt with the history of the Latin Orient. The book includes sketches in the history of neighboring peoples, such as the Bulgars, Serbs, Ottoman Turks, the civilization of Venice and Genoa, the Empire of Trebizond, the Kingdom of Cyprus, the Kingdom of Cilician Armenia, and Latin possessions in the seas of Greece.

This is a very useful and important contribution. The book is written in a heavy German style, but the Byzantine section is worthy of study and would merit a detailed critical report by a Byzantine scholar. The volume covers the time from to , that is, up to the accession of the Macedonian dynasty. At the beginning of his book, Amantos gives a fine picture of conditions in the Empire in the fourth century, laying stress upon the triumph of Christianity, the foundation of Constantinople, and Germanic invasions.

This is a very reliable piece of work with many important observations.

History of the Byzantine Empire, – - Alexander A. Vasiliev - Google Books

It shows that Greeks of the present day are seriously interested not only in classical studies and modern politics, but also in the middle ages of the Near East, which are of great significance for the history of Greece. Amantos' second volume which covers the time came out in On Diehl's works and their importance see V.

Laurent, "Charles Diehl, historin de Byzance," and G. It covers the whole period of Byzantine history down to the fall of the Empire. Ostrogorsky includes an excellent picture of the development of Byzantine historical studies beginning with the sixteenth century. The earlier period of the Empire, , is sketched only briefly, according to the plan of Handbook, in which it appeared. The text, supplied with extremely useful and well-chosen notes and references, gives a very reliable picture of the history of the Eastern Empire.

As the title indicates, the chief aim of the author was to show the development of the Byzantine State as it was influenced by internal and external political changes.

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Therefore, political history prevails in the book, although social, economic, and cultural phenomenon are taken into account. As a supplement to this volume, Ostrogorsky's excellent chapter on "Agrarian Conditions in the Byzantine Empire in the Middle Ages," published in the first volume of The Cambridge Economic History of Europe from the Decline of the Roman Empire, can be warmly recommended.

Ostrogorsky's book is an excellent piece of scholarship and is absolutely indispensable for the student of Byzantine history. Vie et mort de Byzance; II. La Civilisation Byzantine. General Brief Sketches. Among other historical works several surveys of Byzantine history are intended for the general reading public. Most of them have little or no serious scientific value, yet these popular accounts, rarely original in nature, are of value in awakening in some readers a desire for further study of the history of the Byzantine empire.

Most of them are written in English. Oman's Byzantine Empire 3rd ed. Harrison, in his sketch 63 pages on Byzantine History in the Early Middle Ages London, , attempts, on the basis of Finlay's and Bury's investigations, to determine the importance of the Byzantine Empire from the point of view of western European civilization. Walter Otto. Neither the first volume nor the sccond part of the second volurne has yet appeared. See also the very interesting remarks on this book by Germaine Rouillard, "A propos d'un ouvrage rcent sur l'histoire de l'tat byzantin," Revue de philologie, 3rd ser.

XIV , Byzantine Empire. Grenier's general treatment is not always satisfactory and he makes both major and minor mistakes, pardonable in one who is not a specialist, but his work is interesting because it gives a large amount of varied information. A brief but compact history of Constantinople related to the general history of the Empire is W. In this outline Scala centered his attention on analyzing and determining the significance of Byzantine civilization. There exists another English book, brief but serious and well done, by the Roumanian historian N. Iorga, entitled The Byzantine Empire, published in London in Foord's well-illustrated and vividly written book, The Byzantine Empirethe Rearguard of European Civilization, appeared in It is regrettable that this book gives only a very brief and superficial account of the history of the Byzantine Empire during the epoch of its fall, the period after Lavisse and A.

The Italian work of N. Turchi, La civilth bizantina Turin, , is a valuable outline of Byzantine culture. In this book Diehl attempted more than a survey of the political history of the Byzantine Empire; he gave an account of the more important inner processes and an explanation of the significance of Byzantine civilization. This book contains a brief bibliography as well as many maps and illustrations.


It has gone through several editions in France. He discussed the causes for the greatness and for the fall of the Empire, the influence of Byzantine civilization. Baynes gave a similar picture in his Byzantine Empire London, , which covers the period from the fourth century to the capture of Constantinople by the Crusaders in The history of the Byzantine Empire to the end of the eleventh century was treated briefly in L. Halphen's Les Barbares: des grandes invasions aux conqutes turques du Xle sicle Paris, ; some bibliography is given. An Historical Perspective. A little French book by Auguste Bailly, Byzance Paris, , embracing in popular form the whole history of the Empire, is not only useful but also is pleasant reading.

Imperial Byzantium, the English edition of an original German work by Bertha Diener, appeared in Chapter III is entitled "Angels and Eunuchs," and the last chapter, which contains a general survey of the situation of the Empire after the Fourth Crusade, is appropriately called "Midsummer Night's Dream. Gerland in the Catholic Encyclopedia and by J.

Bury in the eleventh edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. An excellent introduction to the history of Byzantium is the monumental work by O. Seeck, History of the Downfall of the Ancient World Geschichte des Untergangs der antiken Welt , published between and , which brings events down to the year Two other very useful introductions to Byzantine history are: E.

Stein, Geschichte des sptrmischen Reiches; and F. Lot, La Fin du monde antique et le debut du moyen ge Paris, , which includes the epoch of Justinian the Great. Stein's second volume, in French, Histoire du Bas-Empire, which covers the period , came out in Byzantine literature.

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An indispensable reference work on Byzantine liter48 The substance of this book served as a basis for Diehl's work in the Cambridge Medieval History, IV, chaps, xxiii and xxiv. This appears in more concise form in Les grands problmes de I'histoire byzantine, Von Kaisern, Engeln und. Eunuchen, and appeared under the pseudonym "Sir Galahad. Grumel, tudes byzantines, II , The theological literature in this edition was collected by Professor A. The same edition contains H. Gelzer's Survey of Byzantine Political History.

Krumbacher's work is the most important existing reference book for the study of Byzantine literature. It contains a vast amount of material and does credit to the profound scholarship and unusual industry of the author. Since Krumbacher was well acquainted with Russian and other Slavic languages, he used sources in these languages. His book is, of course, intended for specialists only and not for the general reader. However, he made available for a wider circle of readers a history of Byzantine literature in a more accessible booklet of fifty pages, Greek, Literature of the Middle Ages Die Griechische Literatur des Mittelalters , in the collection, Die Kultur der Gegenwart, edited by P.

Dieterich's book, History of Byzantine and Modern Greek, Literature Geschichte der byzantinischen und neugriechischen Literatur, Leipzig, , is of some importance. Valuable material is included in the brief history of Byzantine literature written in Italian by G. Montelatici, Storia della letteratura bizantina , published in the Manuali Hoepli, serie scientifica, Milan, This book is not a repetition of Krumbacher's work; it was published nineteen years later and includes a great quantity of new information.

For the earlier period of Byzantine literature, from the fourth century, A. Christ's Geschichte der Griechischen Litteratur Vol. II, Munich, , is very useful. Three other books are of value: F. New York, ; Otto Bardenhewer, Patrologie 3rd ed. In the last-named work, the concluding three volumes, covering the period from the fourth to the eighth centuries, are especially important. Iorga has analyzed the literature briefly in "La littrature byzantine, son sens, ses divisions, sa portee," Revue historique du sud-est europen, II , The nineteenth century Russian scholars began to show an active interest in Byzantine history in the second half of the nineteenth century.

The German academiciansDuring the first half of the nineteenth century some studies in the field were made by German scholars in Russia, who were elected members of the Russian Academy of Sciences and remained permanently in Petrograd. These German scholars were especially interested in determining the importance of Byzantium and Byzantine sources in Russian history.

Of these academicians Ph. Krug and A. Kunik deserve mention. Westerners and Slavophiles. Among eminent representatives of Russian thinkers in the first half of the nineteenth century, Byzantine history often served as material for supporting a particular social movement. For example, some Slavophiles51 drew from the history of the Byzantine Empire facts supporting and justifying their theories. The Westerners took from the same sources facts which were supposed to show the unfavorable influence of Byzantine history and to point definitely to the great danger which would threaten if Russia should decide to follow the traditions of the fallen Empire.

In one of his works, Herzen wrote: Ancient Greece had ceased to exist when Roman domination came in and saved her, just as the lava and ashes saved Pompeii and Herculaneum. The Byzantine period had opened the lid of the coffin, but the dead body remained dead; like any other grave it was taken over by the priests popes and monks and was fittingly handled by eunuchs, those true representatives of sterility.

The Byzantine Empire could live, but her function was ended; and history in general is interested in nations only while they are on the stage, i. Another Westerner, P. Tchaadayev, wrote in his first philosophic letter: "Complying with our evil fate, we turned to the woeful, deeply hated Byzantine Empire for a moral code, which was to be the basis of our education.

Unquestionably gifted and highly educated as these thinkers were, they were not real students of Byzantine history. The Slavophiles admired the Russian Orthodox Church and the old Russian political and social institutions preceding the time of Peter the Great, whose reforms, they believed, had led Russia astray. The Westerners, on the contrary, held that the Russians should live in complete affiliation with the west of Europe and that Russia had become a civilized coun Herschensohn, II, 1 1 8 ; French ed. A still stronger expression is found in a different version of this letter, II, 13 Herschensohn ed.

A realization of the importance of Byzantine historical study was very apparent in the middle of the nineteenth century. A fervent Slavophile, A. Khomiakov, wrote in the 's: "In our opinion, to speak of the Byzantine Empire with disdain means to disclose one's own ignorance. Granovsky, wrote: Do we need to speak of the importance of Byzantine history for us, Russians? We have taken over from Tsargrad 5 5 the best part of our national culture, namely, our religious beliefs and the beginnings of civilization.

The Eastern Empire introduced Russia into the family of Christian nations. Dispatched from the UK in 11 business days When will my order arrive? Alexander Vasiliev. Home Contact us Help Free delivery worldwide. Free delivery worldwide. Bestselling Series. Harry Potter. Popular Features. New Releases.

History of the Byzantine Empire, Volume 1. Description "This is the revised English translation from the original work in Russian of the history of the Great Byzantine Empire. It is the most complete and thorough work on this subject. From it we get a wonderful panorama of the events and developments of the struggles of early Christianity, both western and eastern, with all of its remains of the wonderful productions of art, architecture, and learning.

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