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IMC 2019: Sessions

Session 1637: Materializing an 'Augusta': Feminine Political Identity and Its Representations within the Byzantine Empire, I

Thursday 4 July 2019, 11.15-12.45

Organiser:Mattia Cosimo Chiriatti, Departament de Prehistòria, Història Antiga i Arqueologia, Universitat de Barcelona
Moderator/Chair:Julia Hillner, Department of History, University of Sheffield
Paper 1637-aLa costruzione di un'Augusta: il panegirico dedicato a Elia Flaccilla di Gregorio di Nissa
(Language: Italiano)
Mattia Cosimo Chiriatti, Departament de Prehistòria, Història Antiga i Arqueologia, Universitat de Barcelona
Index terms: Byzantine Studies, Rhetoric, Sermons and Preaching, Theology
Paper 1637-bThe Portrayal of the Ideal Christian Empress in the Letters of Pope Leo the Great, 440-461
(Language: English)
Raúl Villegas Marín, Institut de Recerca en Cultures Medievals, Universitat de Barcelona
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Hagiography, Rhetoric, Theology
Paper 1637-cLas representaciones históricas de las emperatrices leónidas
(Language: Español)
Margarita Vallejo-Girvés, Departamento de Historia y Filosofía, Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, Madrid
Index terms: Byzantine Studies, Ecclesiastical History, Hagiography, Women's Studies

After Augustus' concession to Livia Drusilla the prestigious title of 'Augusta', the construction of the feminine power and its representations begin to dramatically evolve from Aelia Flaccilla, spouse of the emperor Theodosius I. On one hand, the political characterization of an empress begins to take shape, further to the numismatics evidence, through literary and material evidence, as bas-reliefs, coins, ivories, monuments, statues. In a broader sense, epigraphy and numismatics, as well as panegyrics and literary sources, provide materials to trace the study of this evolution.
On the other, this 'materialization' process displayed the imperial feminine power to a global scale, allowing to the imperial consort to become, from a mere sovereign sine imperio into a proper autocrat, as the example of Irene, the αὐτοκράτωρ Ῥωμαίων. This workshop aims to portray, from several angles, the evolution of this material construction of the political role of the feminine consort, seeking to cast more light upon her power display from Late Antiquity to the Golden Age of the Byzantine Empire.