The New Roman Empire A History of Byzantium

Anthony Kaldellis

The New Roman Empire A History of Byzantium

Anthony Kaldellis






1 Dec 2023




$88.95 AUD

$101.99 NZD

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A major new history of the eastern Roman Empire, from Constantine to 1453.

In recent decades, the study of the Eastern Roman Empire, also known as Byzantium, has been revolutionized by new approaches and more sophisticated models for how its society and state operated. No longer looked upon as a pale facsimile of classical Rome, Byzantium is now considered a vigorous state of its own, inheritor of many of Rome's features, and a vital node in the first truly globalized world.

The New Roman Empire is the first full, single-author history of the eastern Roman empire to appear in over a generation. Covering political and military history as well as all the major changes in religion, society, demography, and economy, Anthony Kaldellis's volume is divided into ten chronological sections which begin with the foundation of Constantinople in 324 AD and end with the fall of the empire to the Ottoman Turks in the fifteenth century. The book incorporates new findings, explains recent interpretive models, and presents well-known historical characters and events in a new light.


Preface Abbreviations List of Maps List of Images Part One: A New Empire New Rome and the New Romans The scaffold of society and personality of government From Christian nation to Roman religion Part Two: Dynastic Insecurities and Religious Passions The first Christian emperors of the east (324-361) Competing religions of empire (337-364) Toward an independent east (364-395) The city and the desert: Cultures old and new Part Three: The Return of Civilian Government The ascendancy of the political class (395-441) Barbarian terrors and military mobilization (441-491) Political consolidation and religious polarization (491-518) Part Four: The Strain of Grand Ambitions Chalcedonian repression and the eastern axis (518-531) The Sleepless Emperor (527-540) War everywhere and plague (540-565) The price of overextension (565-602) Part Five: To the Brink of Despair The great war with Persia (602-630) Commanders of the Faithful (632-644) A contest of wills (641-685) Part Six: Resilience and Recovery Life and taxes among the ruins An empire of outposts (685-717) The lion and the dragon (717-775) Reform and consolidation (775-815) A new confidence (815-867) Part Seven: The Path towards Empire A new David and Solomon (867-912) A game of crowns (912-950) The apogee of Roman arms (950-1025) A brief hegemony (1025-1048) Part Eight: A New Paradigm The walls close in: Losing Italy and the east (1048-1081) Crisis management, the Komnenian way (1081-1118) Good John and the Sun King: A second apogee (1118-1180) Disintegration and betrayal (1180-1204) Part Nine: Exile and Return "A new France": Colonial occupation Romans west and Romans east (1204-1261) Union with Rome and Roman Disunity (1261-1282) Territorial retrenchment and cultural innovation (1282-1328) Part Ten: The Struggle for Dignity at The End Military failure and mystical solace (1328-1354) The walls close in (1354-1402) The cusp of a new world (1402-1461) Glossary State Revenues and Payments to Foreign Groups, Fifth-Seventh Centuries Bibliography


Anthony Kaldellis , Professor of Classics, University of Chicago, UNITED STATES

Anthony Kaldellis is Professor of Classics at the University of Chicago. His previous books include A Cabinet of Byzantine Curiosities; Streams of Gold, Rivers of Blood; Romanland, and, as translator and editor, Prokopios' The Secret History. In 2019, he began hosting the podcast "Byzantium & Friends."


"A brilliant reinvestigation of a millennium and more of Byzantine History; the first complete treatment for a generation drawing on impeccable scholarship and offering so many new insights." -- Peter Heather, author of Christendom: The Triumph of a Religion, AD 300-1300

"Kaldellis's new narrative history of the medieval eastern Roman ('Byzantine') empire offers a highly readable, insightful, and provocative interpretation of one of the longest-lived state formations in the historical record. How and why it lasted so long lies at the heart of the book and the answers offered will challenge many long-held assumptions about the eastern Roman world and the civilization it embodied." -- John F. Haldon, author of The Empire that Would Not Die: The Paradox of Eastern Roman Survival, 640-740

"A compelling and authoritative overview of a millennial empire, filled with unfamiliar and revealing details, that shows how its initial deep foundations enabled Byzantium's extraordinary longevity. Kaldellis's combination of structural analysis, mastery of original sources, and admirable synthesis of challenging issues make this a brilliant guide." -- Judith Herrin, author of Ravenna: Capital of Empire, Crucible of Europe

"Utilizing an impressive scope of recent research, Kaldellis refutes older views of the Roman state as despotic. Forty-two of 91 emperors may have come to power through violence, but the shared assumptions of subjects and rulers conferred on it lasting endurance... Outstanding in every aspect." -- Library Journal

"No one would describe this massive work as light reading, but I was struck by how almost every page offered a new insight or a fascinating fact. Any reader with an abiding interest in the subject will find this book to be a worthwhile investment." -- Mike Markowitz, The NYMAS Review

"The book includes fifteen well-executed and detailed maps, and numerous monochrome photographs, including coins, manuscript illustrations, works of art, and surviving buildings from the Empire's long history...Any reader with an abiding interest in the subject will find this book to be a worthwhile investment." -- Mike Markowitz, The NYMAS Review: A Publication of The New York Military Affairs Symposium

"The most important book about the history of Western civilization published this year-and for many years-is Anthony Kaldellis' magnum opus, The New Roman Empire: A History of Byzantium." -- Hadley Arkes, Claremont Review of Books

"The author does the job well, I believe, and needs to be taken seriously." -- Usman Butt, Middle East Monitor

"[Kaldellis'] book is a tremendous achievement of labour, scholarship and historiographical judgment. It will surely become the new standard work on its subject, not to mention a deserving candidate for book prizes. The many maps of changing political boundaries are among the best I have come across." -- Tony Spawforth, Classics for All

"A tremendous achievement of labour, scholarship and historiographical judgment." -- Tony Spawforth, Classics for All

"The New Roman Empire provides an astonishingly detailed and authoritative history of the Eastern Roman Empire, in which the author shows a remarkable depth of knowledge." -- Vesa Oittinen, The Times Literary Supplement

"The Eastern Roman Empire, which, thanks to innovative institutions and a bottomless strategic playbook, endured beyond the fall of the West in 476 and right to the cusp of Early Modernity. It is this story, that Professor Anthony Kaldellis elegantly recounts in The New Roman Empire: A History of Byzantium... It is high time that Byzantium received its flowers. Kaldellis' account certainly ensures this, while also staking a claim to the modern meaning of 'Byzantine.'" --