39th Symposium of the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Archaeology and Art of the Christian Archaeological Society, Byzantine and Christian Museum, Athens, May 31–June 2, 2019
On behalf of the Executive Board of the Christian Archaeological Society we hereby announce the organization of the 39th Symposium of Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Archaeology and Art of the Christian Archaeological Society, which will be held in Athens, at the Byzantine and Christian Museum, May 31 – June 2, 2019.
The one day special topic of the 39th Symposium of the ChAE Ideological and cultural reception of Byzantium by other cultures (7th-15th centuries) is the continuation of the special topic of the 38th Symposium Seeking the place of the “other” in Byzantium which explored the impact of other religious and ethnic groups on the material culture and the artistic production of Byzantium. The special topic of the 39th Symposium will attempt to complete the picture by investigating the image of Byzantium and its ideological and cultural reception by others, especially by its neighbors, Slavs, Russians, Georgians, Armenians, Seljuk and Ottoman Turks, Arabs, Normans, Scandinavians, Venetians, Genoese, Franks and other Crusaders etc.
Thanks to its military, diplomatic, and cultural supremacy, the Byzantine empire was diachronically a model for imitation and a reference point for foreign peoples. The great impact of this ecumenical uniqueness that characterized the period of the empire’s apogee (843-1071), was gradually reduced when the European states of the West shifted their attention toward the East (1071-1204), but this change was not entirely perceived by the ruling dynasty, state officials, economic elites and intellectuals during the difficult circumstances of the last period (1204-1453).
The purpose of the Symposium’s special topic, as a continuation of last year’s discussions, is to investigate the cultural and politico-economic image of the Byzantine empire its coreligionists, on heterodox peoples and followers of other religions with whom Byzantium came into contact from the 7th century to the Fall of 1453. More specifically, during the Symposium we will examine evidence of material culture and artistic expressions of these peoples with reference to Byzantium. The aim is to evaluate the image other peoples had of the Byzantine state, the Byzantine economy, Byzantine technology, Byzantine society, and the expression of Byzantine culture and civilization.
Apart from major papers, which the Organizing Committee will assign to specialists in the field, thematically relevant communications of 15 minutes’ duration will be presented on the same day.
Themes to be addressed during the Symposium may include:
- The reception of Byzantium by others, especially by neighboring cultures and its function as a model. The imaginary Byzantium from the point of view of others and especially of neighbors (presentation by period and region with reference to appropriate written sources and works, e.g. terms for offices and dignities, legislation, liturgy, coins, seals, hagiography etc).
- Patrons (social strata, rulers, aristocrats, laymen, clergymen), appearance/attire, epigraphic evidence.
- Byzantine echoes in the typology and form of monuments in other, especially neighboring lands (urban planning, secular architecture, church architecture, funerary architecture, architectural sculpture).
- Byzantine traces in the artistic expression of other and especially neighboring lands (iconographic and decorative subjects, modes of painting, painters/ateliers and commissions).
- Byzantine models in material culture, in works of everyday life and luxury items, technological achievements of other and especially neighboring lands (pottery, tools, metalwork-vessels-jewelry-weaponry, etc).
The language of the Symposium is Greek. Speakers from abroad may deliver their papers in English or French.