A Companion to Ostrogothic Italy


A Companion to Ostrogothic Italy is a concise yet comprehensive cutting edge survey of the rise and fall of Italy’s first barbarian kingdom, the Ostrogothic state (ca. 489-554 CE). The volume’s 18 essays provide readers with probing syntheses of recent scholarship on key topics, from the Ostrogothic army and administration to religious diversity and ecclesiastical development, ethnicity, cultural achievements, urbanism, and the rural economy. Significantly, the volume also presents innovative studies of hitherto under-examined topics, including the Ostrogothic provinces beyond the Italian lands, gender and the Ostrogothic court, and Ostrogothic Italy’s environmental history. Featuring work by an international panel of scholars, the volume is designed for both new students and specialists in the field.
Contributors are Jonathan Arnold, Shane Bjornlie, Samuel Cohen, Kate Cooper, Deborah Deliyannis, Cam Grey, Guy Halsall, Gerda Heydemann, Mark Johnson, Sean Lafferty, Natalia Lozovsky, Federico Marazzi, Christine Radtki, Kristina Sessa, Paolo Squatriti, Brian Swain, and Rita Lizzi Testa.

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Jonathan J. Arnold, BA, University of Maine and MA, Ph.D. University of Michigan, is Associate Professor of History at the University of Tulsa. His publications include Theoderic and the Roman Imperial Restoration (Cambridge, 2014).

M. Shane Bjornlie, MA, Ph.D. Princeton University, is Associate Professor of History at Claremont McKenna College and a former Fellow of the American Academy in Rome (2011). His publications include Politics and Tradition between Rome, Ravenna, and Constantinople (Cambridge, 2013).

Kristina Sessa, AB, Princeton University and MA, Ph.D., University of California at Berkeley, is Associate Professor of History at the Ohio State University. Her publications include The Formation of Papal Authority in Late Antique Italy: Roman Bishops and the Domestic Sphere (Cambridge, 2012).
"The period of Ostrogothic rule in Italy is a liminal one... Given this chronological uncertainty along with the ongoing debates over what precisely the year 476 meant to whom (and when), the editors have wisely opted for a “long and wide” approach to the topic, encompassing everything from Odoacer through the Lombard invasion, thereby including the full sweep of the Ostrogothic Kingdom both inside and outside of Italy...The current volume is a welcome guide to Ostrogothic Italy... [it] is free from typographical errors and enhanced throughout by high quality maps and images, especially in the chapter on art and architecture. The editors are also to be commended for producing such a consistent and even-handed volume despite several intense disagreements that currently divide the field."
Marion Kruse, in: Medioevo Greco 17 (2017), 450-52.

"The volume more than succeeds in its stated intention of providing a cutting-edge synthesis of recent scholarship on the Ostrogothic period in Italy that will be of use to students and scholars alike."
James Wood, in: Early Medieval Europe 27 (I) (2019), 133-135.
''There is in this work, as one might expect and hope, a lot of valuable detail, but the analysis of this detail is rendered in such a way as to furnish scholars with new answers and avenues of approach for the future. It will remain a fundamental companion for some years to come. [...] this is a vital work for both seasoned scholars and students and will provide a useful impetus for future work and research''.
Cristopher Heath, in Al-Masāq, Journal of Medieval Mediterranean , 30/2, (2018).
Advanced undergraduates, graduate students, and scholars interested in the history of Italy and the western Roman Empire and post-Roman kingdoms, from ca. 476-554 CE.