Skip to main content

IMC 2020: Sessions

Session 311: Working across Borders in Byzantium: Byzantine Borrowings from Pagans, Muslims, and Latin Christians

Monday 6 July 2020, 16.30-18.00

Moderator/Chair:Rebecca Darley, Department of History, Classics & Archaeology, Birkbeck, University of London
Paper 311-aThe Goddess Queen of the Sea on 'Iconographical Borders': The Transition and Transformation of the Motif
(Language: English)
Aleksandra Krauze-Kołodziej, Faculty of Humanities, John Paul II Catholic University, Lublin
Index terms: Art History - General, Byzantine Studies
Paper 311-bAstronomy on the Line: Reviewing Ptolemy in Late Byzantium in the Light of Islamic Science - Firenze, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Codex Laur. Plut. 28. 14's Astronomical Chapters
(Language: English)
Luca Farina, Università degli Studi di Padova / Università Ca' Foscari, Venezia / Università degli Studi di Verona / École Practique des Hautes Études (EPHE), Paris
Index terms: Byzantine Studies, Islamic and Arabic Studies, Science
Paper 311-c'Having set the boundaries of the orthodox faith': Papal Saints and the Roman Papacy in Middle Byzantine Liturgical Life
(Language: English)
Ethan J. Williamson, Department of History University of Florida
Index terms: Byzantine Studies, Ecclesiastical History, Hagiography, Liturgy

Paper -a:
The aim of the presentation is to show the figure of Amphitrite, a Graeco-Roman goddess queen of the sea and wife of Poseidon as an important part of early medieval, especially Byzantine iconography. In the introduction, basing on ancient written and iconographical sources, the author will present the figure of Amphitrite in Greek and Roman religion and iconography. The main part of the talk will be dedicated to the transition and transformation of this iconographical motif basing on chosen examples of ancient, early Christian and early medieval, especially Byzantine, written and iconographical sources. The author will concentrate on the symbolic role of Amphitrite in eschatological context of the iconography of the Last Judgement (usually part of the scene of the Resurrection of the dead from lands and seas). During the talk, basing on literature and iconography, the cultural continuity between ancient and medieval representations will be shown as an example of the connection between pagan spirituality and a new era influenced by Christian religion.

Paper -b:
In this paper I will show how late Byzantine scholars crossed Islamicate borders, both symbolically and materially, due to their intellectual curiosity and scientific awareness. As shown by Anne Tihon in 1996, in Laur. Plut. 28. 14, ff. 23r-30v are some unpublished anonymous chapters proposing to review Ptolemy with of an armillary sphere, and giving the longitudes as written in the Persian's Tables. To explain the above-mentioned method, datable to 1375, I aim to focus on the manuscript tradition of the chapters, and their relevance within a new analysis of Byzantine often-repeated closeness, especially towards Islamicate sciences.

Paper -c:
While scholars have devoted much attention to the relations between the Greek and Latin churches before the schism of 1054, they have tended to emphasize tension and division, not how Constantinople and Rome saw themselves united within one Church. This paper examines one element of that relationship - the role and portrayal of papal saints in the liturgical life of the Middle Byzantine period. The Byzantine liturgy operated as a great engine of collective memory generation and preservation. This is evident in the commemoration of saints in texts such as synaxaria and menologia, which reinforced definitions of orthodox Christian community. Byzantine churchmen during the 9th-11th centuries lauded papal saints as defenders of true Christian faith and as critical actors in delineating the boundaries between orthodoxy and heresy.