Tag Archives: Justinian

Event – Building God’s Empire: Archaeology, religion and the Byzantine conquest of Africa

This looks like an interesting event to attend for those who can make it. The combination of Justinian, Belisarius, and the idea of rebuilding the western Roman empire is an intoxicating mix, and a great story. To be held at … Continue reading

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Eastern Roman gold coins found in 1,500-year-old Chinese tomb

Continuing the theme of the trade between the eastern Roman empire and China, this report points towards active trade and travel between Constantinople and China in the 6th Century. First published in the GB Times 7 July 2017 Two Eastern … Continue reading

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Byzantine ‘flat-pack’ church to be reconstructed in Oxford after spending 1,000 years on the seabed

Centuries before the Swedes started flat-packing their furniture, the Holy Roman Emperor Justinian had his own version, sending self-assembly churches to newly conquered parts of his empire. From the Independent. Now one of the “Ikea-style” churches, which spent more than … Continue reading

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Historical novels from Marie Heese and Ross Laidlaw

I have just returned from walking Hadrian’s Wall – which I highly recommend – during which I decided to read some Roman historical fiction, and I thought I would share these books with you. by Tom Sawford I came across … Continue reading

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Qsar-Libya a Byzantine oasis in the Libyan desert

These mosaics are from the sixth century. Some lovely pictures from the ancient church of  Qsar-Libya. (the ancient city of Theodoureas). The city was rebuilt by Justinian in the name of his wife Theodora. The curious thing about this archaeological … Continue reading

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The Anastasian Wall: A Neglected Byzantine Monument

The Anastasian Walls were built about 500 AD by the Emperor Anastasias. They stretch from the Marmara to the Black Sea. Although often mentioned in the  history of the Empire during raids, particularly by the Bulgars, very little is known … Continue reading

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Hagia Sofia: Dome Secrets

Enjoy this video which explains how the great dome of Hagia Sophia was designed and built. The engineering skills of the Romans was outstanding, and no computer simulation for them! Related article: Nineteenth Annual Runciman Lecture – Byzantine Architecture reconfigured … Continue reading

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Theodora: Actress, Empress, Whore by Stella Duffy

Tom Holland enjoys a rip-roaring ride with an empress. A new book out in hardback. Theodora: Actress, Empress, Whore by Stella Duffy, 352pp, published by Virago, £12.99 First published in The Guardian, Saturday 17 July 2010 The grander the show of … Continue reading

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Ravenna and San Vitale are the Hot Topics – Now Over 2,000 Visits

Just a quick note to say that we have now had over two thousand visitors since the blog opened in April this year. It took us five months to gather our first one thousand visits, but only three months for the … Continue reading

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Mosaic Hunting in Northern Italy

We have just made our final arrangements to go on a holiday to northern Italy to seek out the Byzantine treasures of Aquileia, Venice, and Ravenna. I am looking forward to relaxing and exploring the sights despite the weakness of … Continue reading

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The Secret History by Procopius

I have recently finished reading “The Secret History” by Procopius. He was the personal secretary to Emperor Justinian’s excellent General Belisarius. It was Belisarius who fought and held off the Persians in the East, and then defeated the Vandals in … Continue reading

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