Byzantine Religious Culture

Studies in Honor of Alice-Mary Talbot


Alice-Mary Talbot has profoundly influenced Byzantine Studies in America and Europe, focusing her scholarship upon the social context of Byzantine religious practices. As Director of Byzantine Studies at Dumbarton Oaks and as editor of Dumbarton Oaks Papers, she touched the professional lives of senior and junior Byzantinists alike. This collection of twenty-five articles from scholars associated with her at various stages in her career compasses such varied disciplines as art history, social history, literature, epigraphy, numismatics and sigillography; contributions are grouped in three related sections: “Women,” “Icons and Images,” and finally “Texts, Practices, Spaces.” Illustrated with both b/w and color images, the volume is at once a varied and a coherent tribute to this extraordinary scholar.
Contributors are Alexander Alexakis, Simon Bendall, Annemarie Weyl Carr, John Duffy, Stephanos Efthymiadis, Elizabeth A. Fisher, Jaroslav Folda, Sharon E. J. Gerstel, Michael Grünbart, Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Angela Constantinides Hero, Michel Kaplan, Paul Magdalino, Henry Maguire, Maria Mavroudi, Stamatina McGrath, Cécile Morrisson, John Nesbitt, Arietta Papaconstantinou, Stratis Papaioannou, Manolis Patedakis, Brigitte Pitarakis, Claudia Rapp, Nancy Patterson Ševčenko, Brooke Shilling, Paul Stephenson and Denis Sullivan.

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Denis Sullivan, Ph.D. (1972) Classical Philology, University of North Carolina, Professor, Curriculum and Instruction, University of Maryland. His publications include The Life of St. Nikon, Siegecraft: Two Tenth-Century Instructional Manuals, and, with Alice-Mary Talbot, The History of Leo the Deacon.
Elizabeth A. Fisher, Ph.D. (1972) in Classical Philology, Harvard University, is Professor of Classics at George Washington University and editor of Michaelis Pselli Orationes hagiographicae (Teubner 1994). She is currently working on Greek translators’ prefaces.
Stratis Papaioannou, Ph.D. (2000) in Byzantine Studies, University of Vienna, is Associate Professor of Classics at Brown University. His book Michael Psellos, Rhetoric and Authorship in Byzantium will appear at Cambridge University Press.
"Alice-Mary Talbot is a Byzantine scholar who certainly deserves a Festschrift such as this rich offering...The number of articles assigned to each section varies somewhat, but their quality is of a consistently high standard...This a rich and varied book that will interest Byzantinists in a multitude of disciplines...The individual articles are rewarding to read from both informative and interpretative points of view; their attention to detail-both in text and footnotes-and overall vision is, almost without exception, exemplary."
Mary B. Cunningham, Speculum 89:2 (April 2014), 548-560

'...The volume is smartly organized according to three themes related its honoree's own scholarly interests in the social context of Byzantine religion ... There are multiple plate images throughout, which exemplify a first-rate publication. Both the editors and the publisher are to be commended for this attractive volume....
It is rare that a volume of collected essays is so cohesive. It is even more rare that one is as important to its field as this one. Just like the Byzantine texts and images under investigation, this book will serve many needs and speak to its readers in different ways. ... But more than anything, this volume simply offers a stellar assortment of the world's leading Byzantinists and presents, more than any other volume that comes to mind, the new directions in Byzantine research."
George E. Demacopoulos, Fordham University, TMR 12.12.03
List of Illustrations ... xi
List of Contributors ... xvii
Introduction ... xxi
Publications of Alice-Mary Talbot ... xxvii
List of Abbreviations ... xxxv

Including the ‘Despised Woman’: Jacob of Serug at the Nativity Feast ... 3
Susan Ashbrook Harvey
A Meeting of Hypatia of Alexandria with St. Febronia of Nisibis in the Life of Sts. David, Symeon and George of Lesbos ... 19
Alexander Alexakis
Une hotesse importante de l’eglise Saint-Jean-Baptiste de l’Oxeia a Constantinople : Febronie ... 31
Michel Kaplan
Learned Women of Byzantium and the Surviving Record ... 53
Maria Mavroudi
Women in Byzantine History in the Tenth and Eleventh Centuries: Some Theoretical Considerations ... 85
Stamatina McGrath
Anna Komnene’s Will ... 99
Stratis Papaioannou

The Matter of the Word in an Icon in Houston ... 125
Annemarie Weyl Carr
The Other Image at the Palace Gate and the Visual Propaganda of Leo III ... 139
Paul Magdalino
Sacred Objects with Holy Light: Byzantine Icons with Chrysography ... 155
Jaroslav Folda
‘Tiles of Nicomedia’ and the Cult of Saint Panteleimon ... 173
Sharon E. J. Gerstel
Michael Psellos on the ‘Usual’ Miracle at Blachernae, the Law, and Neoplatonism ... 187
Elizabeth A. Fisher
“Pangs of Labor without Pain”: Observations on the Iconography of the Nativity in Byzantium ... 205
Henry Maguire
Byzantine ‘Medals’: Coins, Amulets and Piety ... 217
Cecile Morrisson and Simon Bendall
New Evidence on Lead Flasks and Devotional Patterns: From Crusader Jerusalem to Byzantium ... 239
Brigitte Pitarakis
The Posthumous Miracles of St. Eustratios on a Sinai Templon Beam ... 267
Nancy Patterson Ševčenko

Hagiography and the Cult of Saints in the Light of Epigraphy and Acclamations ... 291
Claudia Rapp
The Jewish Boy Legend and the ‘Western Twist’ ... 313
John Duffy
Saints and Saracens: On Some Miracle Accounts of the Early Arab Period ... 323
Arietta Papaconstantinou
The Monastery of Diomedes ... 339
John W. Nesbitt
Les saints d’Italie meridionale (IXe–XIIe s.) et leur role dans la societe locale ... 347
Stephanos Efthymiades
Zur Memorialkultur im byzantinischen Mittelalter ... 373
Michael Grunbart
Siege Warfare, Nikephoros II Phokas, Relics and Personal
Piety ... 395
Denis F. Sullivan
An Anonymous Narrative of the Martyrdom of the Anchorites of Mount Sinai (BHG 307d) ... 411
Angela Constantinides Hero
Nicholas the Monk and Former Soldier ... 421
Paul Stephenson and Brooke Shilling
The Testament of the Patriarch Athanasios I of Constantinople (1289–93, 1303–09) ... 439
Manolis S. Patedakis

Index ... 465
Scholars of Byzantine social and cultural history interested in religious practices, institutions, texts and artifacts within the context of the late antique and medieval Mediterranean world.
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