Fourteen Byzantine Rulers: The Chronographia of Michael Psellus

Fourteen Byzantine Rulers: The Chronographia of Michael Psellus

by Michael Psellus


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Fourteen Byzantine Rulers: The Chronographia of Michael Psellus by Michael Psellus

Byzantine monk, Michael Psellus, or Psellos, was an important biographer and historian of the 11th century. His most important work is the "Chronographia," a history of the reigns of fourteen Byzantine emperors and empresses during the century leading up to Psellus' own time. Beginning with Ramanos II in the middle of the 10th century and concluding with Michael VII in the late 11th century, the "Chronographia" is an important document of the lives of the rulers of the Byzantine Empire. The work focuses on describing the personal character of its subjects over particular details of political and military events, as was common with other similar historical works. The work also contains a great depth of autobiographical content which paints the author as an incredibly learned man who believed in the importance of classical study especially with regard to the ancient Greek philosopher Plato. This work is an invaluable scholarly history of the Byzantine Empire in the 10th and 11th century.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781420950250
Publisher: Neeland Media
Publication date: 01/01/2014
Pages: 190
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.44(d)

About the Author

Michael Psellus, Byzantine philosopher, historian, and man of letters, was born in Constantinople in 1018. An infant prodigy, he attracted the notice of important patrons and eventually entered the government service, and, as one short-lived emperor succeeded another, became extremely influential. Falling into disfavor on Constantine IX’s death, Psellus for a time became a monk, but finding he had no vocation returned to court to resume a leading role in government, becoming chief minister of the empire under Michael VII Ducas. His literary output was immense, and not all of it has been identified, let alone published, but he is regarded today as one of the greatest courtiers and men of letters of his age.

E. R. A. Sewter was a well-known Byzantine scholar and the editor of Greece and Rome. His translation of The Alexiad of Anna Komnene is still published in Penguin Classics. He died in 1976.

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