Front Page Titles (by Subject) 1.: AUTHORITIES — ( Ch. XLV . sqq. and Vol. IX. Ch. L . sqq. ) - The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. 8
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1.: AUTHORITIES — ( Ch. XLV . sqq. and Vol. IX. Ch. L . sqq. ) - Edward Gibbon, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. 8 
The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, ed. J.B. Bury with an Introduction by W.E.H. Lecky (New York: Fred de Fau and Co., 1906), in 12 vols. Vol. 8.
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AUTHORITIES — (Ch. XLV. sqq.andVol. IX. Ch. L. sqq.)
Greek (and Other) Sources
For the later part of his history Menander (for whom see above, vol. vi. Appendix 2, p. 354) had access to the direct knowledge of contemporaries who were concerned in the political events. For the earlier years he possibly used Theophanes of Byzantium, who related in ten Books the events from 566 to 581.1 Some extracts from Theophanes have been preserved by Photius (Müller, F.H.G. iv. 270; Dindorf, Hist. Græc. Min. vol. i.).
Johannes of Epiphania (see Evagrius, 5, 24) also wrote a history which overlapped with those of Theophanes and Menander. Beginning with 572 it came down to 598, and was chiefly concerned with Persian affairs, on which Johannes was well informed, being acquainted with Chosroes II. and other influential Persians, and knowing the geography of the countries in which the wars were waged. One long fragment of Bk. 1 has come down (Müller, F.H.G. iv. 272 sqq.; Dindorf, Hist. Græc. Min. vol. i.), but it is probable that we have much material derived from him in Theophylactus Simocatta, Bks. 4 and 5; and his work was also used by Evagrius (B. 6).
John of Ephesus (or of Asia, as he is also styled) was born about 505 at Amida, and brought up by Maron the Stylite in the Monophysitic faith. He came to Constantinople in 535, and in the following year was appointed bishop of the Monophysites (Bishop “of Ephesus,” or “of Asia”). He enjoyed the favour of the Emperor and Empress; and Justinian assigned him the mission of converting to Christianity the pagans who were still numerous in Asia, Phrygia, Lydia, and Caria; and afterwards ( 546) he was appointed to suppress idolatry in Constantinople itself.2 It is remarkable that the orthodox Emperor should have committed this work to a Monophysite; the circumstance illustrates the policy of the Emperor and the influence of Theodora. John founded a Syrian monastery near Sycae and the Golden Horn; but he was deposed from his dignity of Abbot by the Patriarch John of Sirmium in the reign of Justin II., and imprisoned ( 571). He survived the year 585. His Ecclesiastical History, written in Syriac, began with the age of Julius Cæsar and came down to the reign of Maurice. It was divided into three parts (each of six Books), of which the first is lost. Of the second, large fragments are preserved in the chronicle of Dionysius of Tellmahrē (who was Monophysite Patriarch of Antioch from 818 to 845 ),3 and have been translated into Latin by Van Douwen and Land (Johannis episc. Ephesi comment. de beatis orientalibus, 1889). Part 3 is extant and is one of our most valuable contemporary sources for the reigns of Justin II. and Tiberius. It has been translated into English by R. Payne Smith, 1860, and into German by J. Schönfelder, 1862. It begins with the year 571 — the year of the persecution of the Monophysites by Justin II. John tells us that this part of his history was mostly written during the persecution under great difficulties; the pages of his MS. had to be concealed in various hiding-places. This explains the confused order in part of his narrative. [W. Wright, Syriac Literature (1894; a reprint, with a few additions, of the article under the same title in the Encyclopædia Britannica, vol. xxii.), p. 102 sqq.]
Evagrius (c. 536-600 ; born at Epiphania), an advocate of Antioch, is the continuer of the continuers (Socrates, &c.) of Eusebius. His Ecclesiastical History, in six Books, begins with the council of Ephesus in 431 and comes down to 593. Apart from its importance as one of the main authorities for the ecclesiastical history of the long period of which it treats, this work has also some brief but valuable notices concerning secular history. Evagrius had the use of older works which are now lost, such as Eustathius (whose chronicle he used in Bks. 2 and 3; see above, vol. vi. p. 347) and Johannes of Epiphania (whose still unpublished work he was permitted to consult in composing Bk. 6).4 Evagrius also made use of John Malalas (the first edition; see above, vol. vi. Appendix 2) and Procopius. An attempt5 has been made to show that he used the work of Menander (directly or indirectly), but the demonstration is not convincing. The accuracy of Evagrius in using those sources which are extant enables us to feel confidence in him when his sources are lost. For the end of Justinian’s reign, for Justin, Tiberius, and Maurice, he has the full value of a contemporary authority. [Ed. H. Valesius, 1673; in Migne, Patr. Gr. vol. 86. A new, much-needed critical edition by MM. Parmentier and Bidez is in the press.]
Theophylactus Simocattes, born in Egypt, lived in the reigns of Maurice and Heraclius, and seems to have held the post of an Imperial secretary. He wrote, in euphemistic style, works on natural history, essays in epistolary form, and a history of the reign of Maurice. Theophylactus — the chief authority for the twenty years which his history deals with — may be said to close a series of historians, which beginning with Eunapius includes the names of Priscus, Procopius, Agathias, and Menander. After Theophylactus we have for more than three hundred years nothing but chronicles. Theophylactus had a narrow view of history and no discernment for the relative importance of facts (cp. Gibbon, c. xlvi., note 49); the affectation of his florid, periphrastic style renders his work disagreeable to read; but he is trustworthy and honest, according to his lights. Although a Christian, he affects to speak of Christian things with a certain unfamiliarity — as a pagan, like Ammianus or Eunapius, would speak of them. He made use of the works of Menander and John of Epiphania. [Best edition by C. de Boor, 1887.]
Contemporary with Theophylactus was the unknown author of the Chronicon Paschale (or Alexandrinum, as it is also called): a chronicle which had great influence on subsequent chronography. Beginning with Adam it came down to the year 629; but, as all our MSS. are derived from one (extant) Vatican MS., which was mutilated at the beginning and at the end, our text ends with 627. As far as 602 the work is a compilation from sources which are for the most part known (cp. above, vol. ii. Appendix 10, p. 365-6); but from this point forward its character changes, the author writes from personal knowledge, and the chronicle assumes, for the reigns of Phocas and Heraclius, the dignity of an important contemporary source, even containing some original documents (see above, p. 115, n. 127; 117, n. 129; 119, n. 132). From the prominence of the Patriarch Sergius, it has been conjectured that the author belonged, like George of Pisidia (see below), to the Patriarch’s circle. The chronology is based on the era which assigned the creation of the world to March 21, 5507, and is the first case we have of the use of this so-called Roman or Byzantine era. [Best edition by Dindorf in the Bonn series. For an analysis of the chronology, see H. Gelzer, Sextus Julius Africanus, ii. 1, 138 sqq.]
The poems of George Pisides (a native of Pisidia) are another valuable contemporary source for the Persian wars of Heraclius, to whom he was a sort of poet laureate. It is indeed sometimes difficult to extract the historical fact from his poetical circumlocutions. The three works which concern a historian are written in smooth and correct Iambic trimeters, which, though they ignore the canon of the Cretic ending rediscovered by Porson, are subject to a new law, that the last word of the verse shall be barytone. They thus represent a transition to the later “political” verses, which are governed only by laws of accent. (1) On the (first) expedition of Heraclius against the Persians, in three cantos (Akroaseis). (2) On the attack of the Avars on Constantinople and its miraculous deliverance ( 626). (3) The Heracliad, in two cantos, on the final victory of Heraclius, composed on the news of the death of Chosroes ( 628). These works were utilised by Theophanes. George is the author of many other poems, epigrams, &c. [See Migne, Patr. Gr. xcii., after Querci’s older edition; L. Sternbach, in Wiener Studien, 13 (1891), 1 sqq. and 14 (1892), 51 sqq. The three historical poems are printed in the Bonn series by Bekker, 1836.]
For the account of the siege of Constantinople in 626 (probably by Theodore, private secretary of the Patriarch6 ) see above, p. 111, n. 116. It is entitled περὶ τω̂ν ἀθέων Ἀβάρων τε καὶ Περσω̂ν κατὰ τη̂ς θεοϕυλάκτου πόλεως μανιώδους κινήσεως καὶ τῃ̑ ϕιλανθρωπίᾳ τον̂ θεον̂ διὰ τη̂ς θεοτόκου μετ’ αὶσχύνης ἀποχωρήσεως. The events of each day of the siege, from Tuesday, July 29, to Thursday, August 7, are related with considerable detail, wrapped up in rhetorical verbiage and contrasting with the straightforward narrative of the Chronicon Paschale, with which it is in general agreement. The account, however, of the catastrophe of the Slavs and their boats in the Golden Horn differs from that of the Chronicon Paschale.7
In connection with this siege, it should be added that the famous ἀκάθιστος ὕμνος — which might be rendered “Standing Hymn”; the singers were to stand while they sang it — is supposed by tradition to have been composed by the Patriarch Sergius in commemoration of the miraculous deliverance of the city. It would be remarkable if Sergius, who fell into disrepute through his Monothelete doctrines, really composed a hymn which won, and has enjoyed to the present day, unparalleled popularity among the orthodox. A recent Greek writer (J. Butyras) has pointed out that expressions in the hymn coincide remarkably with the decisions of the Synod of 680 against Monotheletism, and concludes that the hymn celebrates the Saracen siege of Constantinople under Constantine IV. — a siege with which some traditions connect it. (Compare K. Krumbacher, Gesch. der byz. Litt., p. 672.) The hymn was, without due grounds, ascribed to George of Pisidia by Querci. The text will be found in Migne, Patrol. Gr. 92, p. 1335 sqq.; in the Anthol. Graeca of Christ and Paranikas, p. 140 sqq., and elsewhere.
The Life and martyrdom of Anastasius, an apostate to Christianity from the Magian religion, who suffered on Jan. 22, 628, was drawn up at Jerusalem towards the end of the same year, and deserves some attention in connection with the Persian wars of Heraclius. It is published in its original form, distinct from later accretions, by H. Usener, Acta Martyris Anastasii Persae, 1894.
The History of Heraclius by Sebaeos, an Armenian bishop of the seventh century, written in the Armenian tongue, was first brought to light through the discovery of a MS. in the library of Etzmiadzin some years before Brosset visited that library in 1848. The text was edited in 1851, and Patkanian’s Russian translation appeared in 1862. Two passages in the work show that Sebaeos was a contemporary of Heraclius and Constans (c. 30 ad fin., p. 122; and c. 34 ad init., p. 148, tr. Patk.); and this agrees with some brief notices of later writers, who state that Sebaeos was present at the Council of Dovin in 645 (of which he gives a full account in c. 33). It is also stated that he was Bishop of Bagratun. The work is not strictly confined to the reign of Heraclius. It begins in the reign of the Persian king Perozes in the fifth century, and briefly touches the reigns of Kobad and of Chosroes I., of whom Sebaeos relates the legend that he was converted to Christianity. The events connected with the revolt of Bahram and the accession of Chosroes II. are told at more length (c. 2-3), and especial prominence is given to the part played by the Armenian prince Musheg, who supported Chosroes. The next seventeen chapters are concerned chiefly with the history of Chosroes and his intrigues in Armenia during the reign of Maurice. It is not till the twenty-first chapter that we meet Heraclius, and not till the twenty-fourth that his history really begins.
In c. 32 we again take leave of him, and the rest of the work (c. 32-38), about a third of the whole, deals with the following twelve years (641-652). The great importance of Sebaeos (apart from his value for domestic and ecclesiastical affairs in Armenia) lies in his account of the Persian campaigns of Heraclius. [Besides the Russian translation, Patkanian published an account of the contents of the work of Sebaeos in the Journal Asiatique, vii. p. 101 sqq., 1866.]
For the ecclesiastical history of the seventh and eighth centuries we are better furnished than for the political, as we have writings on the great controversies of the times by persons who took part in the struggles. Unluckily the synods which finally closed the Monotheletic and the Iconoclastic questions in favour of the “orthodox” views enjoined the destruction of the controversial works of the defeated parties, so that of Monotheletic and Iconoclastic literature we have only the fragments which are quoted in the Acts of Councils or in the writings of the Dyothelete and Iconodule controversialists.
For the Monotheletic dispute we have (besides the Acts of the Council of Rome in 649, and of the Sixth General Council of 680) the works of the great defender of the orthodox view, the Abbot Maximus ( 580-662). He had been a secretary of the Emperor Heraclius, and afterwards became abbot of a monastery at Chrysopolis (Scutari), where we find him 630. His opposition to Monotheletism presently drove him to the west, and in Africa he met the Monothelete Patriarch Pyrrhus and converted him from his heretical error ( 645). But the conversion was not permanent; Pyrrhus returned to his heresy. Maximus then proceeded to Rome, and in 653 was carried to Constantinople along with Pope Martin, and banished to Bizya in Thrace. A disputation which he held then with the Bishop of Caesarea led to a second and more distant exile to Lazica, where he died. A considerable number of polemical writings on the question for which he suffered are extant, including an account of his disputation with Pyrrhus. [His works are collected in Migne, Patr. Gr. xc. xci. (after the edition of Combefis, 1675).] Maximus had a dialectical training and a tendency to mysticism. “Pseudo-Dionysius was introduced into the Greek Church by Maximus; he harmonised the Areopagite with the traditional ecclesiastical doctrine, and thereby influenced Greek theology more powerfully than John of Damascus” (Ehrhard, ap. Krumbacher, Gesch. der byz. Litt. p. 63).
Another younger opponent of Monotheletism was Anastasius of the monastery of Mount Sinai. He travelled about in Syria and Egypt, fighting with heresies (second half of seventh century). Three essays of his are extant (περὶ τον̂ κατ’ εἰκόνα) on Monotheletism; the third gives a history of the controversy. [Works in Migne, Patr. Gr. vol. lxxxix.]
John of Damascus was the most important opponent of Iconoclasm in the reigns of Leo III. and Constantine V. The son of a Syrian who was known by the Arabic name of Mansur, and held a financial post under the Saracen government at Damascus, he was born towards the end of the seventh century. He was educated by a Sicilian monk named Cosmas. He withdrew to the monastery of St. Sabas before 7368 and died before 753. What we know of his life is derived from a Biography of the tenth century by John of Jerusalem, who derived his facts from an earlier Arabic biography. (The life is printed in Migne, Patr. Gr. xciv. p. 429 sqq.) The great theological work of John is the Πηγὴ γνώσεως, “Fountain of Knowledge,” a systematical theology founded on the concepts of Aristotelian metaphysics (here John owed much to Leontius of Byzantium). But the works which concern us are the essays against the Iconoclasts, three in number, composed between 726 and 736. The first Diatribe was written and published between the edict of Leo and the deposition of the Patriarch Germanus three years later. The second seems to have been written immediately after the news of this deposition reached Palestine; for John, referring to this, makes no reference to the installation of Anastasius which took place a fortnight later (see c. 12; Migne, Patr. Gr. xciv. p. 1297). The object of this dissertation was to elucidate the propositions of the first, which had excited much discussion and criticism. The third contains much that is in the first and second, and develops a doctrine as to the use of images.9 The great edition (1712) of Lequien, with valuable prolegomena, is reprinted in Migne’s Patr. Gr. xciv.-xcvi. [Monographs: J. Langen, Johannes von D., 1879; J. H. Lupton, St. John of D., 1884.]
The defence of image-worship addressed “to all Christians and to the Emperor Constantine Kaballinos and to all heretics,” included in John’s works (Migne, vol. xcv. p. 309 sqq.), is not genuine. It contains much abuse of Leo and Constantine. The story of Barlaam and Joasaph — a romance founded on the story of Buddha — assumed its Greek form in the 7th century, in Palestine, and the author of the Greek romance was a monk named John, who perhaps belonged to the monastery of St. Sabbas. This John was taken to be John of Damascus, and hence the story of Barlaam and Joasaph was ascribed to the famous writer of the 8th century and included in his collected works. The most important Christian source of the composition was the Apology of Aristides, which is practically written out in the sermon of Nachor, so that Mr. J. Armitage Robinson was able to restore the original Greek text with help of a Syriac translation (The Apology of Aristides, in Texts and Studies, i. 1, 1891).
When the Paschal Chronicle deserts us in 627, we have no contemporary historians or chroniclers for the general course of the Imperial history until we reach the end of the eighth century. There is a gap of more than a century and a half in our series of Byzantine history. The two writers on whom we depend for the reigns of the Heracliad dynasty and of the early Iconoclast sovereigns lived at the end of the eighth and the beginning of the ninth century: the Patriarch Nicephorus and the monk Theophanes. They both used a common source, of which we have no record.
Nicephorus, Patriarch of Constantinople 806-815, has his place in history as well as in literature. At the time of the second council of Nicaea, 787, he was an Imperial secretary. In 806 he succeeded Tarasius in the Patriarchate (see above, p. 243) and stood forth as the opponent of the monastic party. Deposed by Leo V. he was, under this and the following Emperor, the most prominent champion of image-worship. He died in exile 829. He was greater as a theological than as an historical writer. His important works on the iconoclastic question were written during exile: (1) the Apologeticus minor, a short treatise defending image-worship; (2) in 817, the Apologeticus major, which is specially important as containing a number of quotations from an iconoclastic work by the Emperor Constantine V. These treatises are printed by Mai, Nova Patrum Bibl., i. 1 sqq., ii. 1 sqq., iii. 1 sqq. [For other works see Pitra, Spicilegium Solesmense, i. p. 302 sqq., iv. p. 233 sqq. Cp. Ehrhard, apud Krumbacher, Gesch. der byz. Litt. p. 72.] The historical works are two: (1) the Χρονογραϕικὸν σύντομον — “Concise list of dates,” — a collection of tables of kings, emperors, patriarchs, &c., from Adam to the year of the author’s death; (2) the Ἱστορία σύντομος — “concise History,” — beginning with the death of Maurice and ending with 769.10 It is a very poor composition; the author selects what is likely to interest an illiterate public and disregards the relative importance of events. The value of the work is entirely due to the paucity of other materials for the period which it covers. Yet Nicephorus seems to have bestowed some pains on the composition of the work. A MS. in the British Museum contains a text which seems to represent the author’s first compilation of his material before he threw it into the form in which it was “published.” See A. Burckhardt, Byz. Zeitsch. v. p. 465 sqq., 1896. [Excellent edition of the historical works by C. de Boor, 1880. This edition includes the life of Nicephorus by the deacon Ignatius written soon after his death.]
George, the syncellus or private secretary of the Patriarch Tarasius, had written a chronicle from the creation of the world, which he intended to bring down to his own time. But when death approached ( 810-11) he had only reached the accession of Diocletian, and he begged his friend Theophanes to complete the work. Theophanes belonged to a good and wealthy family.11 He was of ascetic disposition and founded a monastery (ἡ μονὴ τον̂ μεγάλου Ἀγρον̂) called “Great Farm” near Sigriane not far from Cyzicus.12 Theophanes undertook the charge of his dying friend and wrote his Chronography between 811 and 815. When Leo V. came to the throne, he took a strong position against the Emperor’s inconoclastic policy and was imprisoned in the island of Samothrace, where he died (817). The Chronography (from 284 to 813) is arranged strictly in the form of annals. The events are arranged under the successive Years of the World, which are equated with the Years of the Incarnation; and the regnal years of the Roman Emperors and of the Persian Kings (in later part, the Saracen caliphs), and the years of the bishops of the five great Sees, are also added in tabular form. Moreover many single events are dated by Indictions, although the indictions do not appear in the table at the head of each year. The awkwardness of dating events on three systems is clear.
Theophanes adopted the Alexandrian era of Anianus (March 25, 5493; see above, vol. iii. Appendix 14), and thus his Annus Mundi runs from March 25 to March 24. As the Indiction runs from Sept. 1 to Aug. 31, the only part of the year which is common to the a.m. and the Indiction is March 25 to Aug. 31. It is obvious that, without very careful precautions, the practice of referring to an Indiction under an a.m. which only partly corresponds to it is certain to lead to confusion. And, as it turns out, Theophanes loses a year in the reign of Phocas, whose overthrow he placed in the right Indiction (14th = 610-11), but in the wrong a.m. (6102 = 609-10). The mistake has set his dates (a.m.) throughout the seventh century a year wrong; we have always to add a year to the a.m. to get the right date (cp. the discrepancies with the Indiction under a.m. 6150 and 617113 ). The true chronology is recovered at the year 6193, and the indiction is found once more in correspondence under a.m. 6207. A new discrepancy arises some years later, for which see below, p. 429. In the earlier part of the work Theophanes used (besides Socrates, &c.) a compilation of excerpts from Theodorus Lector (see above, vol. vi. Appendix 2, p. 347). For the sixth century he draws upon John Malalas, Procopius, Agathias, John of Epiphania, and Theophylactus; for the seventh George Pisides. It is possible that all these authors were known to him only indirectly through an intermediate source. He had, in any case, before him an unknown source for the seventh and most of the eighth century (if not more than one), and this was also a source of Nicephorus (see above, p. 400). For the reign of Constantine VI. and Irene, Nicephorus and Michael I., Theophanes has the value of a partial and prejudiced contemporary. [Previous editions have been superseded by De Boor’s magnificent edition (1883), vol. i. text; vol. ii. the Latin version of Anastasius, three lives of Theophanes, dissertations by the editor on the material for the text, and splendid Indices. Another Life of Theophanes has been edited by K. Krumbacher, 1897.]
The writings of Theodore of Studion provide us with considerable material for ecclesiastical history as well as for the state of Monasticism at the end of the eighth and beginning of the ninth century. For his prominence in questions of church discipline, which assumed political importance (in connection with the marriage of Constantine VI. and the policy of Nicephorus I.), see above, p. 241 n. and 243 n.; and he was a stout opponent of Leo V. in the matter of image-worship. He was born 759 (his father was a tax-collector); under the influence of his uncle Plato, he and his whole family entered the monastery of Saccudion, where in 797 he succeeded his uncle as abbot. In the following year, he and his monks took up their abode in the monastery of Studion; and from this time forward Studion was one of the most important cloisters in the Empire. Three times was Theodore banished: (1) 795-7, owing to his opposition to the marriage of Constantine; (2) 809-11, for his refusal to communicate with Joseph who had performed the marriage ceremony; (3) 814-20, for his opposition to Leo V. Under Michael II. he was not formally banished, but did not care to abide at Constantinople. He died 826.
The following works of Theodore have historical interest: (1) The three λόγοι ἀντιρρητικοί, and other works in defence of image-worship; (2) the Life of abbot Plato, which gives us a picture of monastic life; (3) the Life of his mother Theoctista, with a most interesting account of his early education, and glimpses of family life; (4) a large collection of letters, of the first importance for the ecclesiastical history of the period; they show the abbot at work, not only in his pastoral duties, but in his ecclesiastical struggles for a quarter of a century. [Collected works in Migne, Patr. Gr. xcix.; but 277 letters, not included, are edited by J. Cozza-Luzi, Nova patrum Bibliotheca, viii. 1, 1 sqq., 1871.]14
There are many Lives of Martyrs who suffered at the hands of the iconoclastic Emperors. The most important is that of St. Stephen of Mount Auxentius (distinguished from the protomartyr as “the younger”) who suffered in 767; the biography was written in 808 by Stephen, deacon of St. Sophia, and furnishes some important material for the history of the iconoclastic policy of Constantine V. For the persecution of Theophilus, we have a life of Theodore Graptus15 and his brother Theophanes (ed. Combefis, Orig. rerumque Constantinop. manipulus, p. 191 sqq.), containing a letter of Theodore himself to John of Cyzicus, of which Schlosser has made good use (Gesch. der bilderst. Kaiser, p. 524 sqq.). Other Lives of importance for the history of the iconoclastic movement are those of Germanus the Patriarch (ed. Papadopulos-Kerameus in the Mavrogordateios Bibliothêkê, Appendix, p. 3 sqq.), Theophanes, Confessor (see above); Nicetas, abbot of Medikion in Bithynia (died 824; Acta SS. April 1, Appendix, xxxiv.-xli.); Theodore of Studion (see above); Nicephorus, Patriarch (see above, p. 400); Tarasius, by the deacon Ignatius (ed. Heikel, 1889; Latin version in Acta SS. Febr. 25, 576 sqq.); the Patriarch Methodius (Migne, Patr. Gr., vol. c. p. 1244 sqq.). For the ecclesiastical history of the reign of Michael III., the life of Ignatius by Nicetas David Paphlagon is of great importance (Migne, Gr. Patr., cv. 487 sqq.). These and other less important16 biographies, in most instances composed by younger contemporaries, have great value in three ways: (1) they give us facts passed over by the chroniclers; (2) many of them were used by the chroniclers, and therefore are to be preferred as furnishing information at first hand; (3) they give us material for a social picture of the period (especially valuable in this respect is the Life of Plato by Theodore Studites; see above, p. 402).
The Life of the Empress Theodora, combined with relations of the deathbed repentance of Theophilus and of his good deeds, is highly important. It was the main source of the chronicler George Monachus for the events concerned. Ed. W. Regel, in Analecta Byzantino-Russica, p. 1 sqq.17
For Leo the Armenian we have a mysterious fragment of what was clearly a valuable chronicle written by a contemporary, whose name is unknown. The piece which has survived (printed in the vol. of the Bonn series which contains Leo Grammaticus, under the title Scriptor Incertus de Leone Armenio) is of great value for the Bulgarian siege of Constantinople in 815.
Apart from this fragment, and the contemporary biographies of saints, the meagre chronicle of George the Monk (sometimes styled George Hamartolus, “the sinner”) is the oldest authority for the thirty years after the point when the chronicle of Theophanes ended ( 813-842). George wrote in the reign of Michael III., and completed his chronicle, which began with the creation, towards the close of that Emperor’s reign. It is divided into four Books; the fourth, beginning with Constantine the Great and ending with the death of Theophilus, is based mainly on the chronicle of Theophanes. For the last thirty years, the author depends on his own knowledge as a contemporary and on oral information; but also makes use of the Vita Theodorae (see above) and the Vita Nicephori by Ignatius (see above, p. 401). Throughout the ecclesiastical interest predominates.
The chronicle of George became so popular and was re-edited so often with additions and interpolations, that it has become one of the most puzzling problems in literary research to penetrate through the accretions to the original form. Until recently the shape and extent of the chronicle and its author’s identity were obscured by the circumstance that a continuation, reaching down to 948 (in some MSS. this continuation is continued to still later epochs), was annexed to the original work of George. The original continuation to 94818 was composed by “the Logothete,” who has been supposed to be identical with Symeon “Magister and Logothete” (for whose chronicle see below). [The only edition of the whole chronicle (with its continuation) is that of Muralt (1859), which is very unsatisfactory. Combefis edited the latter part from 813 to 948, and this has been reprinted in the Bonn series (along with Theophanes Continuatus), 1838. The material for a new critical edition has been collected by Professor C. de Boor. Much has been written on the problems connected with these chronicles; but I need only refer to F. Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien, 1876, which cleared the way to further investigation; and to the most recent study of De Boor on the subject, Die Chronik des Logotheten, in Byz. Zeitsch., vi. 233 sqq.]
The chronicle of Symeon Magister, who is probably the same person as the hagiographer Symeon Metaphrastes, has not yet been published; but for practical purposes it is accessible to the historian in the form of two redactions which go under the name of Leo Grammaticus and Theodosius of Melitene.19 Beginning with the creation it came down to 948. Leo Grammaticus (according to a note in Cod. Par. 1711) “completed” the Chronography (i.e., the original Chronicle of Symeon) in the year 1013; but otherwise he is only a name like Theodosius of Melitene. [Leo is included in the Bonn series, 1842; Theodosius was published by Tafel, 1859.] This chronicle is different in tone from that of George Monachus; the work of a logothete, not of a monk, it exhibits interest in the court as well as in the church.
Another chronicle, which may be conveniently called the Pseudo-Symeon, comes down to the year 963. The last part of the work, 813-963, was published by Combefis (1685) and reprinted by Bekker (Bonn, 1838) under the name of Symeon Magister. The mistake was due to a misleading title on the cover of the Paris MS. which contains the chronicle. (On the sources of the unknown author, see F. Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien.)
In respect to these extremely confusing chronicles with their numerous redactions, Krumbacher makes a good remark: “In Byzantium works of this kind were never regarded as completed monuments of literary importance, but as practical handbooks which every possessor and copyist excerpted, augmented, and revised just as he chose” (p. 362).
Joseph Genesius (son of Constantine who held the office of logothete under Michael III.) wrote (between 945 and 959) at the suggestion of the Emperor Constantine VII. an Imperial History in four Books, embracing the reigns of Leo V., Michael II., Theophilus, and Michael III.: thus a continuation of Theophanes, who left off at the accession of Leo V. In Bk. iv. Genesius, clearly departing from the original plan, added a brief account of the reign of Basil I., so that his work reaches from 813 to 886. Besides oral information and tradition, from which, as he says himself, he derived material, he used the work of George Monachus, and the Life of Ignatius by Nicetas (see above, p. 403). His history is marked by (1) superstition, (2) bigotry (especially against the iconoclasts), (3) partiality to his patron’s grandfather Basil. [Ed. Lachmann in Bonn series, 1834. For the sources, &c., see Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien; cp. also Wäschke in Philologus, 37, p. 255 sqq., 1878.]
A Sicilian Chronicle, relating briefly the Saracen conquest of the island, from 827 to 965 is preserved in Greek and in an Arabic translation. It must have been composed soon after 965. There are three editions: P. Batiffol, 1890 (in Comptes rendus de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres); Cozza-Luzi and Lagumina, with the Arabic text, 1890, in Documenti p. s. alla storia di Sicilia, 4ta serie, ii.; A. Wirth, Chronographische Späne, 1894.
It is unfortunate that the historical monograph which the grammarian Theognostos, a contemporary of Leo V. and Michael II., dedicated to the revolt of Euphemius and the first successes of the Saracens in Sicily ( 827), is lost. The work is used by the compilers of Theophanes Continuatus (see p. 82, ed. Bonn).
We have a disappointing account of the siege and capture of Syracuse by the Saracens in 880, from the pen of Theodosius, a monk, who endured the siege and was carried prisoner to Palermo, whence he wrote a letter describing his experiences to a friend. (Published in the Paris ed. of Leo Diaconus, p. 177 sqq.)
Besides stimulating Joseph Genesius to write his work, the Emperor Constantine VII. organised another continuation of Theophanes, written by several compilers who are known as the Scriptores post Theophanem, the Emperor himself being one of the collaborateurs. It seems probable that the original intention was not to go beyond the death of Basil or perhaps of Leo VI., but the work was extended after the death of Constantine, and comes down to 961. It falls into six Books: Bk. 1, Leo V.; Bk. 2, Michael II.; Bk. 3, Theophilus; Bk. 4, Michael III.; Bk. 5, Basil I. (this Book was the composition of the Emperor Constantine). So far the work conforms to a uniform plan; but Bk. 6, instead of containing only Leo VI., contains also Alexander, Constantine VII., Romanus I., Romanus II. It has been conjectured that the author of part of this supplement was Theodore Daphnopates, a literary man of the tenth century, known (among other things) by some official letters which he composed for Romanus I. The Continuation of Theophanes shows, up to the death of Basil, its semi-official origin by the marked tendency to glorify the Basilian dynasty by obscuring its Amorian predecessors. The main source of Bks. 1 to 5 is Genesius. Bk. 6 falls into two parts which are markedly distinct: A, Leo VI., Alexander, Constantine, Romanus I., Constantine, caps. 1-7; B, Constantine, 8-end, Romanus II. A is based upon the work of the Logothete (probably Symeon Magister) which has come down to us as a continuation of George Monachus (see above). Now the Logothete was an admirer of Romanus I. and not devoted to the family of Constantine VII.; and the sympathies of the Logothete are preserved by the compiler of A, notwithstanding their inconsistency with the tendencies of Bks. 1-5. The Logothete’s work appeared in the reign of Nicephorus Phocas, and must have been utilised almost immediately after its appearance by the compiler of A. It is probable that B was composed early in the same reign by a different author; it seems not to depend on another work, but to have been written from a contemporary’s knowledge. [Scriptores post Theophanem, ed. Combefis, 1685; Theophanes Continuatus, ed. Bekker, 1838 (Bonn). Analysis of sources, &c., in Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien.]
The circumstances of the capture of Thessalonica by the Cretan pirates in 904 are vividly portrayed for us in the well-written narrative of JohnCameniates, a narrow-minded priest, ignorant of the world, but one who had lived through the exciting and terrifying scenes which he records and had the faculty of observation and the power of expressing his impressions. The work is printed in the Paris (1685) and in the Bonn (1838) series along with the Scriptores post Theophanem.
For the ecclesiastical history of the reign of Leo VI. we have a work of great importance in the anonymous Vita Euthymii published by C. de Boor (1888); cp. above, p. 263, note 43. The work was composed soon after the ex-Patriarch’s death ( 917). Professor E. Kurtz of Riga has since published two Greek texts on the life of Theophano, wife of Leo VI., which he published in the Mémoires of the St. Petersburg Academy, 1898, Classe Hist.-Phil. (Zwei griechische Texte über die Hl. Theophano). One of these documents is by a contemporary (Βίος καὶ πολιτεία τη̂ς . . . Θεοϕανώ). The other is a discourse on the pious lady’s life and merits by Nicephorus Gregoras.
With the history of Leo Diaconus (Leo Asiaticus) we enter upon a new period of historiography. After an interval of more than three hundred years, he seems to re-open the series which closed with Theophylactus Simocatta. His history in ten Books embracing the reigns of Romanus II., Nicephorus Phocas, and John Tzimisces (959-975) is — although written after 992 — a contemporary work in a good sense; depending on personal knowledge and information derived from living peoples, not on previous writers. As Leo was born in 950 he is not a contemporary in quite the same sense for the earlier as for the later part of his work. He afterwards took part in the Bulgarian War of Basil II. [Included in the Paris and the Bonn series.]
[For the poem of Theodosius on the reconquest of Crete by Nicephorus, see below, vol. ix. p. 308, n. 135.]
The work of Leo Diaconus was continued by the most prominent and influential literary figure of the eleventh century, Constantine Psellus (born 1018, probably at Nicomedia). He adopted the legal profession; was a judge in Philadelphia under Michael IV.; an Imperial secretary under Michael V. He enjoyed the favour of Constantine IX., who founded a university at Constantinople and appointed Psellus Professor of Philosophy. But his services were required in political life; he became chief secretary (proto-asecretis) of the Emperor and one of his most influential ministers. Presently he left the world to become a monk and assumed the name of Michael, by which he is generally known. But monastic life hardly suited him, and after some years he returned to the world. He played a prominent part under Isaac Comnenus and Constantine Ducas; and was “prime minister” during the regency of Eudocia and the reign of Michael Parapinaces (a pupil who did him small credit). He died probably in 1078. As professor, Psellus had revived an interest in Plato, whose philosophy he set above Aristotle — a novelty which was regarded as a heresy. In this, he was stoutly opposed by his friend John Xiphilin, who was a pronounced Aristotelian. As young men, Psellus had taught Xiphilin philosophy, and Xiphilin had taught Psellus law. It was through the influence or example of Xiphilin (who withdrew to the monastery of Bithynian Olympus) that Psellus had assumed the tonsure. Xiphilin, who had written on law in his youth, wrote homilies in his later years, and became Patriarch of Constantinople in 1064; his old friend Psellus pronounced his funeral oration in 1075.
For success in the courts of the sovereigns whom Psellus served, candour and self-respect would have been fatal qualities. Psellus had neither; his writings (as well as his career) show that he adapted himself to the rules of the game, and was servile and unscrupulous. His Chronography reflects the tone of the time-serving courtier. Beginning at 976, it treats very briefly the long reign of Basil, and becomes fuller as it goes on. It deals chiefly with domestic wars and court intrigues; passing over briefly, and often omitting altogether, the wars with foreign peoples. The last part of the work was written for the eye of Michael Parapinaces, and consequently in what concerns him and his father Constantine X. is very far from being impartial.
The funeral orations which Psellus composed on Xiphilin, on the Patriarch Michael Cerularius (see above, p. 281), and on Lichudes, a prominent statesman of the time, have much historical importance, as well as many of his letters. [The Chronography and these Epitaphioi are published in vol. iv., the letters (along with other works) in vol. v., of the Bibliotheca Graeca medii aevi of C. Sathas.] These works are but a small portion of the encyclopaedic literary output of Psellus, which covered the whole field of knowledge. It has been well said that Psellus is the Photius of the eleventh century. He was an accomplished stylist and exerted a great influence on the writers of the generation which succeeded him. [For his life and writings see (besides Leo Allatius, De Psellis et eorum scriptis, 1634; cp. Fabricius, 10, p. 41 sqq.) Sathas, Introductions in op. cit. vols. iv. and v.; A. Rambaud, Revue Historique, 3, p. 241 sqq.; K. Neumann, Die Weltstellung des byz. Reiches vor den Kreuzzugen, 1894; B. Rhodius, Beitr. zur Lebensgeschichte und zu den Briefen des Psellos, 1892.]
Important for the history, especially the military history, of the eleventh century is a treatise entitled Strategicon by Cecaumenos. Of the author himself we know little; he was witness of the revolution which overthrew Michael V., and he wrote this treatise for his son’s benefit after the death of Romanus Diogenes. The title suggests that it should exclusively concern military affairs, but the greater part of the work consists of precepts of a general kind. Much is told of the author’s grandfather Cecaumenos, who took part in the Bulgarian wars of Basil II. Joined on to the Strategicon is a distinct treatise of different authorship (by a member of the same family; his name was probably Niculitzas): a book of advice to the Emperor “of the day” — perhaps to Alexius Comnenus on the eve of his accession. It contains some interesting historical references. [First published by B. Vasilievski in 1881 (in the Zhurnal Ministerstva narodnago prosviestcheniya; May, June, July), with notes; text re-edited by Vasilievski and Jernstedt (Cecaumeni Strategicon et incerti scriptoris de officiis regiis libellus), 1896.]
The latter part of the period covered in the history of Psellus has had another contemporary, but less partial, historian in Michael Attaleiates, a rich advocate, who founded a monastery and a hostelry for the poor (ptochotropheion).20 His abilities were recognised by Constantine Ducas and Nicephorus Botaneiates, from whom he received honorary titles (Patrician, Magister, Proedros), and held posts of no political importance. He accompanied Romanus Diogenes on his campaigns as a “military judge.” The history embraces the period 1034-1079, and was completed c. 1080; it is dedicated to Nicephorus III. [First published in the Bonn series, 1873.]
Just as Attaleiates overlaps Psellus and funishes important material for correcting and completing his narrative, so the work of the prince Nicephorus Bryennius, son-in-law of Alexius Comnenus, overlaps and supplements the work of Attaleiates. Nicephorus had good opportunities for obtaining authentic information on the history of the times. His father had aspired to the throne and overthrown Michael VII. (see above, p. 284), but had been immediately overthrown by Alexius Comnenus and blinded. But, when Alexius came himself to the throne, Bryennius found favour at court; and his brilliant son was chosen by the Emperor as the husband of Anna and created Caesar. He played a prominent part on several occasions during the reign of Alexius, conducting, for instance, the defence of the capital against Godfrey of Bouillon in 1097. After his father-in-law’s death he refused (cp. above, p. 289) to take part in a conspiracy21 which his wife organised against her brother John, under whose rule he continued to serve the state until his death in 1037. In his last years, at the suggestion of his mother-in-law Irene, he undertook the composition of a history of Alexius Comnenus, but death hindered him from completing it, and the work covers only nine years, 1070-9. He describes it himself as “historical material”; it is, as Seger observes, “less a history of the time than a family chronicle, which, owing to the political position of the families, assumes the value of ‘a historical source.’ ” It has the common defects of the memoirs of an exalted personage, whose interests have been connected intimately with the events he describes and with the people he portrays. Bryennius makes considerable use of the Chronography of Psellus, and also draws on Attaleiates and Scylitzes. [Included in the Bonn series, 1836. Monograph: J. Seger, Nikephoros Bryennios, 1888.]22
The incomplete work of Bryennius was supplemented and continued by his wife, the literary princess Anna Comnena, whose Alexiad, beginning with the year 1069, was successfully carried down to 1118, the year of her father’s death. Anna ((born 1083) retired after the unsuccessful conspiracy against her brother (see above, p. 289) to the monastery of Kecharitomene, which had been founded by her mother Irene, who now accompanied her into retreat. The work which has gained her immortal fame was completed in 1148. Anna received the best literary education that the age could afford; she was familiar with the great Greek classics from Homer to Polybius, and she had studied philosophy. She was impregnated with the spirit of the renaissance which had been initiated by Psellus; she affects, though she does not achieve, Attic purism in her artificial and pedantic style. She had fallen far more completely under the spell of the literary ideals of Psellus than her husband, though he too had felt the influence. The book is a glorification of her father; and naturally her account of the crusades is highly unfavourable to the crusaders. But she was conscientious in seeking for information, oral and documentary.23 [Ed. Bonn, vol. i., ed. Schopen, 1839; vol. ii., ed. Reifferscheid, 1878; complete ed. by Reifferscheid (Teubner), 1884. E. Oster, Anna Comnena (Programmes, 1, 1868; 2, 1870; 3, 1871); C. Neumann, Griech. Geschichtschreiber u. Geschichtsquellen im 12 Jahrh., 1888.]
The thread of Imperial history is taken up by John Cinnamus where Anna let it drop. He too, though in a less exalted position, had an opportunity of observing nearly the course of political events. Born in 1143 be became the private secretary of the Emperor Manuel, whom he attended on his military campaigns. His history embraces the reign of John and that of Manuel (all but the last four years24 ), 1118-1180; but the reign of John is treated briefly, and the work is intended to be mainly a history of Manuel. It has been recently proved by Neumann that the text which we possess (in a unique MS.) does not represent the original work, but only a large extract or portion of it.25 As a historian Cinnamus has some of the same faults as Anna Comnena. He is a panegyrist of Manuel, as she of Alexius; his narrow attitude of hostility and suspicion to Western Europe is the same as hers, and he treats the Second Crusade with that Byzantine one-sidedness which we notice in her treatment of the First; he affects the same purism of style. But he is free from her vice of long-windedness; there is (as Krumbacher has put it) a certain soldier-like brevity both in his way of apprehending and in his way of relating. As a military historian he is excellent; and he rises with enthusiasm to the ideas of his master. [In the Bonn series, 1836. Study of the work in C. Neumann, Gr. Geschichtschreiber und Geschichtsquellen im 12 Jahrhundert, 1888.]
Nicetas Acominatos (of Chonæ). Nicetas filled most important ministerial posts under the Angeli, finally attaining to that of Great Logothete. He was witness of the Latin conquest of Constantinople, and afterwards joined the court of Theodore Lascaris at Nicæa. He was the younger brother of Michael Acominatos, archbishop of Athens, who was also a man of letters. The historical work of Nicetas (in twenty-one Books) begins where Anna Comnena ended, and thus covers the same ground as Cinnamus, but carries the story on to 1206. But he was not acquainted with the work of Cinnamus; and for John and Manuel he is quite independent of other extant sources. He differs remarkably from Anna and Cinnamus in his tone towards the Crusaders, to whom he is surprisingly fair. Nicetas also wrote a well-known little book on the statues destroyed at Constantinople by the Latins in 1204. See further below, vol. x. cap. lx. ad fin. [Ed. Bonn, 1835, including the essay De Signis. Panegyrics addressed to Alexius Comnenus II., Isaac Angelus, Theodore Lascaris, and published in Sathas, Bibl. Gr. med. aevi. vol. i. Monograph by Th. Uspensky (1874). Cp. C. Neumann, op. cit.]
Another continuator of Theophanes arose in the eleventh century in the person of John Scylitzes (a curopalates and drungarios of the guard), a contemporary of Psellus. Beginning with 811 (two years before Theophanes ends) he brought his chronicle down to 1079. His chief sources are the Scriptores post Theophanem, Leo Diaconus, and Attaleiates; but he used other sources which are unknown to us, and for his own time oral information. His preface contains an extremely interesting criticism on the historiographers who had dealt with his period. Since Theophanes, he says, there has been no satisfactory epitome of history. The works of “the Siceliot teacher” (a mysterious person whose identity has not been established)26 and “our contemporary Psellus” are not serious, and are merely bare records of the succession of the Emperors — who came after whom — and leave out all the important events. This notice is very important; the criticism cannot apply to the Chronography of Psellus which we possess, and therefore suggests that Psellus wrote a brief epitome of history which began at 813, and is now lost. Other historians have treated only short periods or episodes, like Genesius, Theodore Daphnopates, Leo Diaconus, and others; and all these have written with a purpose or tendency — one to praise an Emperor, another to blame a Patriarch. The whole text of Scylitzes has not yet been published, but is accessible for historical purposes in the Latin translation of B. Gabius (Venice, 1570), combined with the chronicle of Cedrenus, which (see below) contains practically a second ed. of Scylitzes up to 1057. The Greek text of the latter part of the work, 1057-1079, is printed in the Paris Byzantine series, and reprinted in the Bonn collection, along with Cedrenus. A complete critical edition is being prepared by J. Seger. [On sources, &c. consult Hirsch, Byzantinische Studien.]
The Historical Synopsis of George Cedrenus (c. 1100 ), from the creation to 1057, is a compilation, in its earlier part, up to 811, from Theophanes, George Monachus, Symeon Magister, and above all, the Psuedo-Symeon (see above). From 811 to the end Cedrenus merely wrote out Scylitzes word for word. [Bonn edition in two vols., 1838-9. Cp. Hirsch, op. cit.]
John Zonaras, who flourished in the first half of the twelfth century, held important posts in the Imperial service (Great Drungarios of the Guard, and chief of the secretarial staff), and then retired to St. Glyceria (one of the Princes’ Islands), where as a monk he reluctantly yielded to the pressure of his friends to compose a profane history. The work begins with the creation and ends in the year 1118. In form it differs completely from such works as the Chronicles of Theophanes or Scylitzes. Zonaras never copies his sources word for word; he always puts their statements in his own way. But this mode of operation is purely formal and not critical; it is merely a question of style; he does not sift his material or bring intelligence to bear on his narrative. Yet he took more pains to collect material than many of his craftsmen; he did not content himself with one or two universal histories such as George Monachus; and he complains of his difficulty in getting books. His work has great importance from the fact that it has preserved the first twenty-one Books of Dion Cassius, otherwise lost. For the second half of the fifth and the first half of the sixth century Zonaras has some important notices derived from a lost source; though for the most part he follows Theophanes. For the last three centuries of his work Zonaras used George Monachus and the Logothete’s Continuation, the Continuation of Theophanes, Scylitzes, Psellus, &c. [The Bonn ed. contained only Bks. 1-12 (1841-4) till 1896, when the third and concluding volume was added by T. Buttner-Wobst. There is also a complete edition by L. Dindorf in six volumes (1868-75). On the sources of Zonaras from 450-811 the chief work is P. Sauerbrei, De fontibus Zon. quaestiones selectae (in Comment. phil. Jen. i. 1 sqq.), 1881; on the period 813-965, Hirsch, op. cit. For earlier Roman history there is a considerable literature on Zonaras. Cp. Krumbacher, op. cit. p. 375.]
Among the compilations which supplied Zonaras with material is a (nonextant) Chronicle, which is defined as a common source of Zonaras and a work known as the Synopsis Sathas, because M. C. Sathas first edited it from a Venetian MS. (1894; Bibl. Gr. med. aevi, vol. vii.). This “Chronological Synopsis” reaches from the creation to 1261. It is closely related to the (not yet published) chronicle of Theodore of Cyzicus which covers the same ground. On the common source, and the sources of that common source, see E. Patzig, Ueber einige Quellen des Zonaras, in Byz. Zeitsch. 5, p. 24 sqq. The author of the Synopsis lived in the latter part of the thirteenth century. The range of the chronicle will be understood when it is said that more than two thirds of it are devoted to the last two hundred years.
The chronicle which served as common source to both Zonaras and the Synopsis was also used by a contemporary of Zonaras, Constantine Manasses, who treated the history of the world from its creation to the death of Nicephorus III. (1081) in “political” verses. (Other sources: Dionysius of Halicarnassus, John Lydus, John of Antioch, Pseudo-Symeon.) This versified chronicle was very popular, it was translated into Slavonic, and was one of the chief sources of a chronicle written in colloquial Greek (see K. Prächter, Byz. Zeitsch. 4, p. 272 sqq., 1895). Published in the Bonn series along with the worthless chronicle of Joel (thirteenth century; sources: George the Monk, the Logothete’s Continuation, Scylitzes). See Hirsch, op. cit.
Another chronographer contemporary with Zonaras was Michael Glykas. Of his life little is known except that he was a “secretary,” and that for some reason he was imprisoned and “blinded,” though not with fatal consequences to his eyesight. His chronicle (from the creation), of which Part iv. reaches from Constantine the Great to the death of Alexius I. (1118), differs considerably in general conception from other chronicles, and is marked, as Krumbacher has well pointed out, by three original features: digressions on (1) natural history and (2) theology, whereby the thread of the chronicle is often lost, and (3) the didactic form of the work, which is addressed to his son. The sources of the latter part are Zonaras, Scylitzes, Psellus, Manasses, Vita Ignatii. (Cp. Hirsch. op. cit.) On his life, chronicle, and other works, see Krumbacher’s monograph, Michael Glykas, 1895. [Edition, Bonn, 1836.]
The paucity of other sources renders the Liber Pontificalis of considerable importance for the Imperial history of the seventh and eighth centuries in Italy. M. Duchesne, in the Introduction to his great edition of the work, has shown with admirable acuteness and learning how it grew into its present form. The primitive Liber Pontificalis was compiled at Rome under the pontificates of Hormisdas, John I., Felix IV., and Boniface II., after 514, and came down to the death of Felix IV. in 530. “For the period between 496 and 530 the author may be regarded as a personal witness of the things he narrates.” The work was continued a few years later by a writer who witnessed the siege of Rome in 537-8, and who was hostile to Silverius. He recorded the Lives of Boniface II., John II., and Agapetus, and wrote the first part of the Life of Silverius ( 536-7). The latter part of this Life is written in quite a different spirit by one who sympathised with Silverius; and it was perhaps this second continuator who brought out a second edition of the whole work (Duchesne, p. ccxxxi.). The Lives of Vigilius and his three successors were probably added in the time of Pelagius II. ( 579-90). As for the next seven Popes, M. Duchesne thinks that, if their biographies were not added one by one, they were composed in two groups: (1) Pelagius II. and Gregory I.; (2) the five successors of Gregory. From Honorius ( 625-38) forward the Lives have been added one by one, and sometimes more than one are by the same hand. Very rarely are historical documents laid under contribution; the speech of Pope Martin before the Lateran Council in 649 forms an exception, being used in the Lives of Theodore and Martin. In the eighth century the important Lives of Gregory II., Gregory III., Zacharias, &c., were written successively during their lives. The biographer of Gregory II. seems to have consulted a lost (Constantinopolitan) chronicle which was also used by Theophanes and Nicephorus. (Cp. Duchesne, Lib. Pont. i. p. 411.) The Biography of Hadrian falls into two parts; the first, written in 774, contains the history of his first two years; the second, covering the remaining twenty-two years of his pontificate, is of a totally different nature, being made up of entries derived from vestry-registers, &c. M. Duchesne has shown that most of these biographers to whose successive co-operation the Liber Pontificalis is due belonged to the Vestiarium of the Lateran; and when they were too lazy or too discreet to relate historical events they used to fall back on the entries in the registers of their office. [L. Duchesne, Liber Pontificalis; Texte, Introduction et Commentaire, t. 1 (1886).]
The Letters of Pope Gregory the Great (for whose life and work see above, p. 42 sqq.) are the chief contemporary source for the state of Italy at the end of the sixth century. The Benedictines of St. Maur published in 1705 a complete collection of the Pope’s correspondence, which extends from 591 to 604. This edition, used and quoted by Gibbon, is reprinted in Migne’s Patr. Graeca, lxxvii. The arrangement of the letters in this collection was adopted without full intelligence as to the nature of the materials which were used. It depended mainly on a Vatican MS. containing a collection of the letters, put together in the fifteenth century by the order of an archbishop of Milan (John IV.). This collection was compiled from three distinct earlier collections, which had never been put together before to form a single collection. Of these (1) the most important is a selection of 681 letters, made under Pope Hadrian I. towards the end of the eighth century. The letters of Gregory range over fourteen indictions, and the “Hadrianic Register,” as it is called, falls into fourteen Books, according to the indictions. This is our basis of chronology. There is (2) a second collection of 200 letters without dates (except in one case), of which more than a quarter are common to the Hadrianic Register. It has been proved that all these letters belong to a single year ( 598-9); but in the text of the Benedictines they are scattered over all the years. (3) The third collection (Collectio Pauli) is smaller; it contained 53 letters, of which 21 are peculiar to itself. Here too, though the Benedictine edition distributes these letters over six years, it has been proved that they all belong to three particular years. These results were reached by very long and laborious research by Paul Ewald, whose article in the Neues Archiv of 1878 (iii. 433 sqq.) has revolutionised the study of Gregory’s correspondence and established the order of the letters. A new critical edition, based on Ewald’s researches, has appeared in the Monumenta Germ. Historica, in two vols. Only Bks. 1-4 are the work of Ewald; but on his premature death the work was continued by L. M. Hartmann. Ewald also threw new light on the biographies of Gregory, proving that the oldest was one preserved in a St. Gall MS. (and known to, but not used by, Canisius). See his article: Die älteste Biographie Gregors I. (in “Historische Aufsatze dem Andenken an G. Waitz gewidmet”), 1886. For the Life by Paulus Diac. cp. above, p. 42, note 73; for the Life by John Diac. cp. p. 42, note 74. [Monographs: G. T. Lau, Gregor I. der Grosse nach seinem Leben und seiner Lehre geschildert (1845); W. Wisbaum, Die wichtigsten Richtungen und Ziele der Thätigkeit des Papstes Gregor des Gr. (1884); C. Wolfsgruber, die Vorpäpstliche Lebensperiode Gregors des Gr., nach seinen Briefen dargestellt (1886) and Gregor der Grosse (1890); Th. Wollschack, Die erhältnisse Italiens, insbesondere des Langobardenreichs nach dem Briefwechsel Gregors I. (1888); F. W. Kellett, Pope Gregory the Great and his relations with Gaul (1889). There is a full account of Gregory’s life and work in Hodgkin’s Italy and her Invaders, vol. v. chap. 7; and a clear summary of Ewald’s arguments as to the correspondence.]
The earliest historian of the Lombards was a bishop of Trient named Secundus, who died in 612. He wrote a slight work (historiola) on the Gesta of the Lombards, coming down to his own time; unluckily it is lost. But it was used by our chief authority on the history of the Lombard kingdom, Paul the Deacon, son of Warnefrid; who did for the Lombards what Gregory of Tours did for the Merovingians, Bede for the Anglo-Saxons, Jordanes for the Goths. Paul was born about 725 in the duchy of Friuli. In the reign of King Ratchis ( 744-9) he was at Pavia, and in the palace-hall he saw in the king’s hand the bowl made of Cunimund’s skull. He followed King Ratchis into monastic retirement at Monte Cassino, and we find him there an intimate friend and adviser of Arichis, Duke of Beneventum, and his wife. He guided the historical studies of this lady, Adelperga, and it was her interest in history that stimulated him to edit the history of Eutropius and add to it a continuation of his own in six Books (the compilation known as the Historia Miscella, see above, vol. iv. p. 353-4). Paul’s family was involved in the ruin of the Lombard kingdom ( 774); his brother was carried into captivity, and Paul undertook a journey to the court of Charles the Great, in order to win the grace of the conqueror. He was certainly successful in his enterprise, and his literary accomplishments were valued by Charles, at whose court he remained several years. When he returned to Italy he resumed his abode at Monte Cassino. His last years were devoted to the Historia Langobardorum. Beginning with the remote period at which his nation lived by the wild shores of the Baltic, Paul should have ended with the year in which the Lombards ceased to be an independent nation; but the work breaks off in the year 744; and the interruption can have been due only to the author’s death. Paul’s Life of Gregory the Great has been mentioned above; another extant work is his Lives of the Bishops of Metz.
For the legendary “prehistoric” part of his work, Paul’s chief source (apart from oral traditions) was the Origo gentis Langobardorum. This little work has been preserved in a MS. of the Laws of King Rotharis, to which it is prefixed as an Introduction.27 It was probably composed c. 670. (There is also a Prologus to the Laws of Rotharis, containing a list of kings; it is important on account of its relative antiquity.) For the early history Paul drew upon Secundus (see above) and Gregory of Tours. When Secundus deserts him (Bk. iv. c. 41) he is lost, and for the greater part of the seventh century his history is very meagre. His chief sources for the period 612 to 744 are the Lives of the Popes in the Liber Pontificalis (from John III. to Gregory II.) and the Ecclesiastical History of Bede. The sources of Paul have been thoroughly investigated by R. Jacobi, Die Quellen der Langobardengeschichte des Paulus Diaconus (1877).28 [Best edition by Waitz in the M.G.H. (Scr. rer. Lang.), 1878; and small convenient edition by the same editor in the Scr. rer. Germ., 1878. German translation by O. Abel (in the Geschichtschreiber der deutschen Vorzeit), 1849 (second edition, 1878). Three important studies on Paul by L. Bethmann appeared in Pertz’s Archiv, vol. vii. p. 274 sqq.; vol. x. p. 247 sqq. and p. 335 sqq. The most recent edition of the Historia Romana (last six Books of the Hist. Miscella) is that of H. Droysen, 1879.]
The chronicle which goes under the name of Fredegarius, on which we have to fall back for Merovingian History when Gregory of Tours deserts us, has also notices which supplement the Lombard History of Paul the Deacon. The chronicle consists of four Books. Bk. 1 is the Liber Generationis of Hippolytus; Bk. 2 consists of excerpts from the chronicles of Jerome and Idatius; Bk. 3 is taken from the Historia Francorum of Gregory of Tours; Bk. 4, which is alone of importance, continues the history of Gregory (from Bk. vi.; 583) up to 642. Two compilers can be distinguished; to one is due Bk. 1, Bk. 2, Bk. 4, chaps. 1-39; to the other (= Fredegarius) Bk. 3 and Bk. 4, chaps. 40 to end ( 613-642). For the last thirty years the work is contemporary. The lack of other sources makes Fredegarius, such as it is, precious. But for this work we should never have known of the existence, during the reign of Heraclius, of the large Slavonic realm of Samo, which united for a decade or two Bohemia and the surrounding Slavonic countries. [Ed. B. Krusch, in the M.G.H. (Scr. Hist. Merov., ii.), 1888, along with the subsequent continuations of the work to 568. Articles by Krusch in Neues Archiv, vii., p. 249 sqq. and p. 423 sqq., 1882.]
[An excellent list of Arabic historians and their works will be found in Wüstenfeld’s Die Geschichtschreiber der Araber, 1882.]
For the Life of Mohammad
(1) For the life of Mohammad the only contemporary sources, the only sources which we can accept without any reservation, are: (a) the Koran29 (for the early traditions of the text, see below, vol. ix. p. 41-3). The order of the Sūras has been thoroughly investigated by Nöldeke, Geschichte des Qorâns, 1860, and by Weil; and (from the character and style of the revelations, combined with occasional references to events) they can be arranged in periods, and in some cases assigned to definite years. (Periods: (1) written at Mecca, (α) early, (β) late: (2) Medina, (α) early, (β) middle, (γ) late.)30
(b) A collection of treaties: see below.
(2) The other source for the life of Mohammad is tradition (Hadīth). The Ashāb or companions of Mohammad were unimpeachably good authorities as to the events of his life; and they told much of what they knew in reply to the eager questions of the Tābiūn or Successors, — the younger generation who knew not the Prophet. But it was not till the end of the first century of the Hijra or the beginning of the second that any attempt was made to commit to writing the knowledge of Mohammad’s life, which passed from lip to lip and was ultimately derived from the companions, few of whom can have survived the sixtieth year of the Hijra. The first work on Mohammad that we know of was composed at the court of the later Omayyads by al-Zuhri, who died in the year 742. It is deeply to be regretted that the work has not survived, not only on account of its relatively early date, but because a writer under Omayyad patronage had no interest in perverting the facts of history. Zuhri’s book, however, was used by his successors, who wrote under the Abbāsids and had a political cause to serve.
The two sources which formed the chief basis of all that is authentic in later Arabic Lives of the Prophet (such as that of Abū-l-Fidā) are fortunately extant; and, this having been established, we are dispensed from troubling ourselves with those later compilations. (a) The life by Mohammad ibn Ishāk (ob 768, a contemporary of Zuhri) has not indeed been preserved in an independent form; but it survives in Ibn Hishām’s (ob. 823) History of the Prophet, which seems to have been practically a very freely revised edition of Ibn Ishāk, but can be controlled to some extent by the copious quotations from Ibn Ishāk in the work of Tabarī. Ibn Ishāk wrote his book for Mansūr the second Abbāsid caliph ( 754-775); and it must always be remembered that the tendency of historical works composed under Abbāsid influence was to pervert tradition in the Abbāsid interest by exalting the members of the Prophet’s family, and misrepresenting the forefathers of the Omayyads. This feature appears in the work of Ibn Ishāk, although in the world of Islam he has the reputation of being an eminently and exceptionally trustworthy writer. But it is not difficult to make allowance for this colouring; and otherwise there is no reason to doubt that he reproduced truthfully the fairly trustworthy tradition which had been crystallised under the Omayyads, and which, in its general framework, and so far as the outer life of the Prophet himself was concerned, was preserved both by the supporters of the descendants of Alī and by those who defended the claims of the family of Abbās. [The work of Ibn Hishām has been translated into German by Weil, 1864.]
(b) A contemporary of Ibn Hishām, named (Mohammad ibn Omar al) Wākidī (ob. 823), also wrote a Life of Mohammad, independent of the work of Ibn Ishāk. He was a learned man and a copious writer. His work met with the same fortune as that of Ibn Ishāk. It is not extant in its original form, but its matter was incorporated in a Life of Mohammad by his able secretary Ibn Sad (Kātib al-Wākidī, ob. 845) — a very careful composition, arranged in the form of separate traditions, each traced up to its source. But another work of Wākidī, the History of the Wars of the Prophet (Kitāb al-Maghāzi), is extant (accessible in an abbreviated German version by Wellhausen, 1882), and has considerable interest as containing a large number of doubtless genuine treaties. The author states that he transcribed them from the original documents.31 Like Ibn Hishām, Wākidī wrote under the caliphate of Mamūn ( 813-833) at Bagdad, and necessarily lent himself to the perversion of tradition in Abbāsid interests.
Al-Tabarī (see below) included the history of Mohammad in the great work which earned for him the compliment of being called by Gibbon “the Livy of the Arabians.” The original Arabic of this part of the Annals was recovered by Sprenger at Lucknow. It consists mainly of extracts from Ibn Ishāk and Wākidī, and herein lies its importance for us: both as (1) enabling us to control the compilations of Ibn Hishām and Ibn Sad and (2) proving that Ibn Ishāk and Wākidī contained all the authentic material of value for the Life of the Prophet, that was at the disposal of Tabari. The part of the work (about a third) which is occupied by other material consists of miscellaneous traditions, which throw little new light on the biography.
[For a full discussion of the sources see Muir, Life of Mahomet; essay at the end of edition 2 — introduction at the beginning of edition 3. For the life of the prophet: Weil, Mohammed der Prophet, 1840; Sprenger, Das Leben und die Lehre Mohammads, 1851; Wellhausen’s sketch in the Encyclopædia Britannica (sub nomine). For his spirit and teaching: Stanley Lane-Poole, The Speeches and Table-talk of the Prophet Mohammad, 1882. Observe that Mr. E. W. Brooks has collected and translated the notices in Arabic writers bearing on Saracen invasions of Asia Minor between 641 and 750 (including some notices on Syria and Armenia): The Arabs from Asia Minor, from Arabic Sources, in the Journal of Hellenic Studies, xviii. p. 182 sqq., 1898; and in the same Journal, xix. p. 19 sqq., 1899, he has given under the title: The Campaign of 716-718 from Arabic Sources, translations of two accounts of the siege of Constantinople (see Gibbon, vol. ix. p. 242 sqq.) (1) that in the Khitab al-Uyun (an 11th century source); and (2) that of Al-Tabari.]
For the Saracen Conquests
The most important authority for the history of the Saracen conquests is Abū-Jafar Mohammad ibn Jarīr, born in 839 at Āmul in Tabaristān and hence called al-Tabarī. He died at Bagdad in 923. It is only the immense scale of his chronicle that warrants the comparison with Livy. Tabarī had no historical faculty, no idea of criticising or sifting his sources; he merely puts side by side the statements of earlier writers without reconciling their discrepancies or attempting to educe the truth. Though this mode of procedure lowers our opinion of the chronicler, it has obvious advantages for a modern investigator, as it enables him to see the nature of the now lost materials which were used by Tabarī. Later writers like al-Makīn, Abū-l-Fidā, Ibn al-Athīr, found it very convenient to draw from the compilation of Tabarī, instead of dealing directly with the numerous sources from which Tabarī drew; just as later Greek chronographers used to work on such a compilation as that of George Monachus. Our gratitude to Tabarī for preserving lost material is seriously modified by the consideration that it was largely to his work that the loss of that material in its original form is due. His work was so convenient and popular that the public ceased to want the older books and consequently they ceased to be multiplied.
The Annals of Tabarī were carried down to his own time, into the tenth century, but his notices for the last seventy years are very brief. The whole work has not yet been translated. We have already made the acquaintance of the part of it bearing on Persian history in the translation of Nöldeke (1879). A portion of the history of the Saracen conquests has been edited and translated by Kosegarten (1831). For the history of the caliphate from 670 to 775, Weil had the original work of Tabarī before him (in MS.), in writing his Geschichte der Chalifen. A complete Arabic edition of Tabarī is being published by Prof. de Goeje (1879-97) and is nearly completed.
In the year 963 Mohammad Bilamī “translated” Tabarī into Persian, by the order of Mansūr I., the Sāmānid sovereign of Transoxiana and Khurāsān. This “translation” (which was subsequently translated into Turkish) has been rendered into French by Zotenberg (1867-74). But the reader will be disappointed if he looks to finding a traduction in our sense of the word. Bilamī’s work is far from being even a free rendering, in the freest sense of the term. It might be rather described as a history founded exclusively on Tabarī’s compilation; — Tabarī worked up into a more artistic form. References to authorities are omitted; the distinction of varying accounts often disappears; and a connected narrative is produced. Such were the ideas of translators at Bagdad and Bukhārā; and Weil properly observes that Ibn al-Athīr, for instance, who does not pretend to be bound to the text of Tabarī, will often reproduce him more truly than the professed translator.
For Persian history, the chief ultimate source of Tabarī was the Khudhāi-nāma or Book of Lords (original title of what was afterwards known as the Shāh-nāma or Book of Kings), officially compiled under Chosroes I. (see above, vol. vii. p. 201), and afterwards carried down to 628, in the reign of Yezdegerd III. This work was rhetorical and very far from being impartial; it was written from the standpoint of the nobility and the priests. It was “translated” into Arabic by Ibn Mukaffa in the eighth century; and his version, perhaps less remote from our idea of a translation than most Arabic works of the kind, was used by the Patriarch Eutychius of Alexandria (see below). Tabarī did not consult either the Pehlevi original or the version of Ibn Mukaffa, but a third work which was compiled from Ibn Mukaffa and another version. See the Introduction to Nöldeke’s invaluable work.
For Tabarī’s sources for the history of Mohammad, see above.
For the successors of Mohammad, Tabarī had Ibn Ishāk’s book on the Moslem conquests and Wākidī (see above); and a history of the Omayyads and early Abbāsids by (Alī ibn Mohammad al) Madāinī ( 753-840).
An independent and somewhat earlier source for the military history of the Saracen conquests is the Book of the Conquests by Abū-l-Hasan Ahmad ibn Yahyā al Bilādhurī, who flourished in the ninth century (ob. 892) at the court of Bagdad. Among the sources which he cites are Wākidī, Ibn Hishām, and Madāinī. His work has been printed but not translated; and has been used by Weil and Muir for their histories of the caliphate. Weil has given an abridgment — very convenient for reference in studying the chronology — “Die wichtigsten Kriege und Eroberungen der Araber nach Beladori,” as an Appendix in vol. iii. of his Gesch. der Chalifen.
Another extant historical work is the Book of Sciences by (Abd-Allah ibn Muslim) Ibn Kutaiba (ob. c. 889), a contemporary of Bilādhurī. It is a brief chronicle, but contains some valuable notices.
Contemporary with these was Ibn Abd-al-Hakam, who died in Egypt, 871. He wrote a Book of the Conquests in Egypt and Africa. See below, vol. ix. p. 191, note 158.
A much greater man than any of these was the traveller Masūdī (Abū-l-Hasan Alī ibn al-Husain), born c. 900, died 956. He travelled in India, visited Madagascar, the shores of the Caspian, Syria, and Palestine, and died in Egypt. He wrote an encyclopaedic work on the history of the past, which he reduced into a shorter form; but even this was immense; and he wrote a compendium of it under the title of The Golden Meadows, which has come down to us (publ. in Arabic with French translation, 1861-77.) It contains valuable information respecting the early history of Islam, and the geography of Asia. He differs from contemporary Arabic historians in the multiplicity of his interests, and his wide view of history, which for him embraces not merely political events, but literature, religion, and civilisation in general.
The chronicle of Eutychius, patriarch of Alexandria, in the tenth century, is extant in the Arabic version edited and translated by Pocock, frequently cited by Gibbon.32 It comes down to 937. We have seen that Eutychius used Ibn Mukaffa’s version of the Khudhāi-nāma; but a thorough investigation of his sources is still a desideratum. His chronicle was used in the thirteenth century by Makin (Elmacin, ob. 1275), a native of Egypt, whose history (coming down to 1260) was also much used by Gibbon (ed. Erpenius, 1625).
John of Nikiu, Jacobite bishop of Nikiu, in the latter part of the seventh century, composed (in Greek or Coptic?) a chronicle from the creation to his own time. It is extremely important for the history of Egypt in the seventh century, and in fact is the sole contemporary source for the Saracen conquest. It has come down, but not in its original form. It was translated into Arabic, from Arabic into Ethiopian ( 1601); and it is the Ethiopian version which has been preserved. The work has been rendered generally accessible by the French translation which accompanies Zotenberg’s edition (1883).
Michael of Melitene, patriarch of Antioch in the twelfth century (1166-99), wrote a chronicle in Syriac, from the creation to his own time. The original work is preserved but not yet edited. An Armenian version, however, made (by Ishōk) in the following century (1248) has been translated into French by V. Langlois (1868); and the part of it which deals with the period 573-717 had been already published in French by Dulaurier in the Journal Asiatique, t. 12, Oct., 1848, p. 281 sqq. and t. 13, April to May, 1849, p. 315 sqq. In the preface to his work Michael gives a remarkable list of his sources, some of which are mysterious. He mentions Enanus of Alexandria (Anianos), Eusebīus, John of Alexandria, Jibeghu (?) Theodore Lector, Zacharias of Melitene [from Theodosius to Justinian], John of Asia (John of Ephesus) [up to Maurice], Goria, the learned (Cyrus, a Nestorian of sixth to seventh century) [from Justinian to Heraclius], St. James of Urfa [Edessa] (end of seventh century) [an abridgment of preceding histories], Dionysius the Deacon (of Tellmahrē) [from Maurice to Theophilus and Hārūn],33 Ignatius of Melitene, Slivea of Melitene, John of Kesun (first half of twelfth century; cp. Assemani, 2, 364). See Dulaurier, J. As. t. 12, p. 288. [Wright, Syriac Literature (1894), p. 250 sqq. H. Gelzer, Sextus Julius Africanus, ii. i. 402 sqq.]
(In connection with Michael of Melitene it may be mentioned that since this notice was written Mr. E. W. Brooks published the text, and an English translation, of A Syriac Chronicle of the Year 846, whose author used partly the same sources as Michael. Zeitschrift der deutschen morgenländischen Gesellschaft, li. p. 569 sqq.)
Mar Gregor of Melitene, known as Bar-Hebraeus or Abulpharagius (Abū-l-Faraj), lived in the thirteenth century. He belonged to the Jacobite church, of which he was the maphriān (from 1264 to 1286), the dignitary second in rank to the patriarch. (1) He wrote in Syriac a chronicle of universal history, political and ecclesiastical, in three parts: Part 1, a political history of the world down to his own time. This was edited, with a Latin translation, by Bruns and Kirsch, 1789, Wright says that text and translation are equally bad (Syriac Literature, p. 278). Part 2, a history of the Church, which in the post-Apostolic period becomes a history of the Church of Antioch, and after the age of Severus deals exclusively with the monophysitic branch of the Antiochene church. Part 3 is devoted to the eastern division of the Syrian Church, from St. Thomas: “from the time of Mārūtha (629) it becomes the history of the monophysite maphriāns of Taghrīth” (Wright, op. cit. p. 279), up to 1286. These two ecclesiastical parts are edited, with translation, by Abbeloos and Lamy, 1872-7. (2) He also issued a recension of his political history, with references to Mohammadan writers, in Arabic, under the title of a Compendious History of the Dynasties, which, edited and translated by Pocock, 1663, was largely used by Gibbon. Bar-Hebraeus made considerable use of the chronicle of Michael of Melitene. [Best account: Wright, op. cit. p. 265 sqq.]
Modern Works. Finlay, History of Greece, vols. i., ii., iii.; K. Hopf, Geschichte Greiechenlands (in Ersch und Gruber’s Enzyklopädie, B. 85); G. F. Hertzberg, Geschichte Griechenlands, Pt. 1; F. C. Schlosser, Geschichte der bilderstürmenden Kaiser des oström. Reiches (1812); Bury, Later Roman Empire, vol. ii.; Gfrörer, Byzantinische Geschichten, vol. iii. (1877); A. Rambaud, L’empire grec au dixième siècle, 1870; Hodgkin, Italy and her Invaders, vols. v. and vi.; Ranke, Weltgeschichte, vols. iv., v. (H. Gelzer has written an able and original outline of Byzantine history for the second edition of Krumbacher’s Hist. of Byz. Literature. A bright brief sketch of the Byzantine Empire by C. W. C. Oman appeared in the series of the Story of the Nations.) For Chronology: Clinton, Fasti Romani, vol. ii. p. 149 sqq. (579 to 641); Muralt, Essai de Chronographie byzantine, two vols. (1855-1871). For Mohammad, see above, p. 416; for the Saracen conquests: Weil’s Geschichte der Chalifen, vol. i., Muir’s Annals of the Early Caliphate, and other works referred to in vol. ix. chapters l. and li. (especially p. 192 and 210). For Italy, besides Hodgkin’s work (see above): Gregorovius, Geschichte der Stadt Rom im Mittelalter (translated into English by Mrs. Hamilton), Diehl, Etudes sur l’administration byzantine dans l’exarchat de Ravenna (1888); M. Hartmann, Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der byzant. Verwaltung in Italien (1889); J. Weise, Italien und die Langobarden-herrscher von 568 bis 628 (1887); C. Hegel, Geschichte der Städteverfassung von Italien (1847).
Special monographs have been mentioned in appropriate places in the notes and in the foregoing appendix.
[1 ]So Krumbacher, Gesch. der byz. Litt., ed. 2, p. 244; but I feel uncertain as to this conjecture. Theophanes and Menander must have been writing their books very much about the same time. It seems likely that Menander derived his account of the negotiations of the peace with Persia in 562 from a written relation by the ambassador Peter the Patrician (so too Krumbacher, p. 239).
[2 ]John calls himself “idol breaker,” and “teacher of the heathen.” We learn of his mission from his own work, Eccles. Hist. B. ii. 44 and iii. 36, 37. He had the administration of all the revenues of the Monophysites in Constantinople and everywhere else (B.V. 1).
[3 ]And in two MSS. in the British Museum.
[4 ]But Evagrius did not make such large use of Johannes as Theophylactus did; it was not his main material. For Bk. 5 he did not use Johannes at all. Cp. Adamek, Beitr. zur Geschichte des byz. Kaisers Mauricius, ii. p. 10-19.
[5 ]By L. Jeep (in 14 Supp.-Bd. der Jahrbb. f. Classische Philologie, p. 162 sqq.). Adamek argues sensibly against this view, op. cit. p. 4 sqq.
[6 ]The same Theodore is the author of a relation of the discovery of a coffer containing the Virgin’s miraculous robe in her Church at Blachernae, during the Avar siege of 619. The text is printed by Loparev (who wrongly refers it to the Russian siege of 860; he is corrected by Vasilievski, Viz. Vrem. iii. p. 83 sqq.) in Viz. Vrem. ii. p. 592 sqq.
[7 ]The metaphor of Scylla and Charybdis, in c. 9, recalls lines of the Bellum Avaricum of George of Pisidia (ll. 204 sqq.), as Mai noticed; but it may be a pure coincidence.
[8 ]John perhaps held his father’s post for a while. For the legend of his right hand see above, p. 322, note 22.
[9 ]Its genuineness has been questioned on insufficient grounds by the Oxford scholar H. Hody.
[10 ]Generally referred to as Breviarium Nicephori.
[11 ]The Emperor Constantine Porphyrogennetos states that Theophanes was his μητρόθειος, an uncle of his mother. De Adm. Imp. iii. p. 106, ed. Bonn.
[12 ]Ruins of the cloisters till exist. See T. E. Evangelides, ἡ μονὴ τη̂ς Σιγριανη̂ς, 1895.
[13 ]Read ἰνδικτιω̂νος ή (for ά) in De Boor’s ed. p. 356.
[14 ]Theodore was also celebrated as a composer of hymns; many of his hymns are extant. His brother Joseph must not be confounded with the Sicilian Joseph the hymnographer.
[15 ]Theodore and Theophanes were called Graptoi, “marked,” because the Emperor Theophilus branded twelve iambic trimeters on their foreheads.
[16 ]See Ehrhard, ap. Krumbacher, op. cit. p. 193 sqq.
[17 ]The Diêgêsis printed by Combefis, Auct. Nov. gr.-lat. patrum bibl., vol. ii. 715 sqq., is a late redaction which completely disfigures the original form and contains little of the Vita Theodoræ.
[18 ]The chief source of the compilation is the Continuation of Theophanes.
[19 ]There is another redaction known as the Pseudo-Polydeukes (because it was passed off as a work of Julius Polydeukes by a Greek copyist named Darmarios), but it breaks off in the reign of Valens, and therefore does not concern us here. See further Krumbacher, op. cit. p. 363, as to another unedited Chronicle of the same kin.
[20 ]The diataxis, or testamentary disposition, respecting these foundations, with inventories of the furniture, library, &c. is extant (ed. Sathas, Bibl. Gr. med. aevi, vol. i.). It is a very interesting document. Cp. W. Nissen, Die Diataxis des Michael Attal. von 1077 (1894).
[21 ]He was thinking doubtless of his own case when he wrote (p. 20, ed. Bonn) of the refusal of Isaac’s brother, John, to take the crown which Isaac pressed upon him. This is well remarked by Seger, Nikeph. Bryennios, p. 22.
[22 ]The Introduction to the work is, at all events partly, spurious.
[23 ]In chronology she is loose and inaccurate.
[24 ]The MS. is mutilated at the end; the original work doubtless ended with the death of Manuel; it was written not long after his death.
[25 ]Griechische Geschichtschreiber, &c. p. 79 sqq.
[26 ]He has, of course, been brought into connection with a certain John the Siceliot, who is named as the author of a chronicle in a Vienna and in a Vatican MS. The chronicle ascribed to him in the latter (Vat. Pal. 394) is merely a redaction of George Monachus. For the chronicle in Vindob. histor. Gr. 99, see Krumbacher, op. cit. p. 386-7.
[27 ]The text will be found in Pertz, Mon. Germ. Hist. Legg. iv. p. 641-7; and in Waitz, Mon. Germ. Hist., Scr. rerum Lang., p. 2-6. Cp. L. Schmidt, in Neues Archiv, xiii. p. 391 sqq. (1888); also his Aelteste Gesch. der Langobarden, 1884; A. Vogeler, Paulus Diaconus u. die Origo g. Lang. (1887).
[28 ]Cp. also Waitz, Neues Archiv, v. p. 416 sqq. (1880); Wattenbach, Deutschlands Geschichtsquellen, ed. 6, p. 169-71.
[29 ]For translations see below, vol. ix. p. 41, n. 96.
[30 ]A translation of the Koran has been published with the Sūras arranged in approximately chronological order (by Rodwell, 2nd ed., 1876).
[31 ]The other works of Wākidī, which are numerous, are lost, including the Kitāb al-Ridda, which related the backslidings of the Arabs on Mohammad’s death, the war with Musailima, &c.
[32 ]Pocock’s translation of Eutychius is reprinted in Migne’s Patrol. Gr. (the Latin series), lvii. b.
[33 ]Dionysius was patriarch of Antioch from 818-845. His chronicle is extant, but only the early part has been edited. The publication of the later part, with a translation, is much to be desired. See Assemani, ii. 98 sqq. Wright, Syriac Literature, p. 196 sqq.