THE ANNUAL SCHOOL OF BYZANTINE STUDIES – The 2018 edition

ȘCOALA ANUALĂ DE STUDII BIZANTINE REPREZENTĂRI ALE BIZANȚULUI ÎN ISTORIE, LITERATURĂ ȘI ARTĂTHE ANNUAL SCHOOL OF BYZANTINE STUDIES The 2018 edition BYZANTIUM REPRESENTATIONS – HISTORY, LITERATURE AND ART

 

 

 

The Annual School of Byzantine Studies

“Representations of Byzantium in History, Literature and Art”

 The solidarization of the academic community around a successful project

 

September 11th, 2018

The opening ceremony of the 2018 Edition of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, organized by the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization in partnership with the University of Bucharest, the Francophone Regional Centre for Advanced Research in Social Sciences, the “Ovidius” University in Constanța, the National University of Political and Administrative Studies, the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța and the Romanian Foundation for Democracy was held in the Senate Hall of the University of Bucharest.

The commencement address of the President of the Scientific Council of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, Professor Emil Constantinescu and that of Professor Paolo Odorico of the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris and Scientific Director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies together highlighted the importance and the scope of this initiative, through emphatic and captivating pleas for the further development  - both within Romania and worldwide – of the humanities in general and of Byzantine Studies in particular. President Emil Constantinescu illustrated the influence of the age-old Byzantine traditions maintained in Romania, which led Nicolae Iorga to once call this space a “Byzance après Byzance”. Professor Paolo Odorico, in turn, noted his pleasant surprise at the level of development and the openness of Romania in the last few years, expressing his wish to continue to mould another generation of experts in Byzantine Studies in this fertile space. The erudite message of Professor Ioan Pânzaru, the Director of CEREFREA – Villa Noël and the organizer of the 2017 edition of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, highlighted the influence of Byzantium on French culture, and underlined the points of contact between French and Romanian researchers in the field of Byzantine Studies. The commencement address of Professor Ioan-Aurel Pop, President of the Romanian Academy and Rector of the “Babeş-Bolyai” University in Cluj-Napoca, as well as that of Professor Michel Kaplan of the Sorbonne University in Paris, were conveyed to the attentive audience. The addresses of Professor Bogdan Murgescu, the Director of the Doctoral School of the University of Bucharest and of Professor Daniela Ţurcanu Caruțiu, the Director of the Institute of Science, Culture and Spirituality at the “Ovidius” University in Constanța, underlined the efforts on the part of their respective institutions in support of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies.

 

UNIVERSITY OF BUCHAREST

Prof.dr. Bogdan Murgescu, președintele Societății de Științe Istorice din România:

Professor Bogdan Murgescu, PhD, President of the Romanian Society of Historical Sciences:

“Byzantium, a millennial civilization that shaped and connected the world around it”

“The University of Bucharest is an academic and research centre in the South-Eastern part of Europe, renowned both within Romania and worldwide. Alongside historians, the University is also host to specialists in Theology, Geography, Geology, Letters and many other academic fields that are connected not solely to the present realities but also to the past realities of the region we find ourselves in. We are proud to have been able to support the inaugural edition of the Summer School of Byzantine Studies with the invaluable assistance of our colleagues at the Faculty of History and at CeReFREA – the Regional Francophone Centre of Advanced Studies in Social Sciences at the University of Bucharest. We are once again proud to be able to contribute to the organization of this edition of the Summer School, and to be a part of the process of transforming what had only been an initiative into a true tradition of academic excellence. I believe that this is an essential endeavour, and I would like to warmly welcome and congratulate the members of the Scientific Council of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization for taking this second step, hopefully one of many on the road to creating a long and established tradition of academic excellence.

As a historian, I could talk at length about the influence of Byzantium; however, since all of us gathered here today either are or are soon to be specialists in the field of Byzantine Studies, I trust it is not necessary that I elaborate on the importance of the Byzantine Empire for mediaeval and modern history. What I would, however, like to remind our honoured audience of is the fact that, because Byzantium was a millennial civilization, it did not just shape the world around it, but also connected it. It is thus my hope that this Summer School will offer you the opportunity to in turn contribute to the available knowledge, to shape the directions of academic discourse in the field of Byzantine Studies, to establish durable ties to your fellow specialists who also honour us with their presence here today, and to craft long and successful academic careers for yourselves.

 

THE INSTITUTE FOR ADVANCED STUDIES IN LEVANT CULTURE AND CIVILIZATION

Prof.dr. Emil Constantinescu, președintele Consiliului Științific al ISACCL:

Professor Emil Constantinescu, PhD, President of the Scientific Council of the ISALCC:

“The Byzantine period was a moment of cultural, intellectual, social and religious flowering, which has left an extensive and indelible mark on world history.”

“The Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, taking on the initiative of a Summer School organized by the Regional Francophone Centre for Advanced Research in Social Studies at the University of Bucharest, has established a School of Byzantine Studies, which will annually bring together professors, researchers, students, PhD candidates and those with a passion for Byzantine Studies.

The Byzantine period was a moment of cultural, intellectual, social and religious flowering, one that left an extensive and indelible mark on world history. Beyond the archaeological remains, a number of customs and elements of Byzantine lifestyle can still be found in many in the social interactions of today. This partly explains the renewed interest in Byzantine Studies in contemporary academia, both in universities and in research centres around the globe.

On the edge of the Empire, and at times a part of it, the Romanian space directly felt the powerful influence of Byzantium. After the fall of Constantinople, Byzantine culture continued to exert a major influence on the emergent arts and culture of the developing Romanian princedoms, so much so that the famous historian and politician Nicolae Iorga felt it appropriate to speak of a “Byzantium after Byzantium” in mediaeval Romania.

In order to adequately portray the impact of Byzantium on the Romanian cultural consciousness, the first day of the School of Byzantine Studies will be spent visiting several historical and cultural sites in Bucharest, being a good opportunity for those interested in discovering and exploring Bucharest’s rich post-Byzantine heritage. Our activities in the field will be followed up by trips to other sites representative of the Roman-Byzantine period, both in Romania and Bulgaria, complementing the addresses of distinguished members of academia that have graciously answered the call from Professor Paolo Odorico – the Scientific Director of the School of Byzantine Studies – to share some of their wisdom and experience with our participants. I salute the presence here today of young researchers both from Romania and from afar, and I hope that our efforts contribute positively to their academic formation.

 

THE ROMANIAN ACADEMY

A message from the President of the Romanian Academy, Professor Ioan-Aurel Pop, PhD and Rector of the “Babeş-Bolyai” University in Cluj-Napoca:

“The New Rome of the East left a visible impact on this people”

“The Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, through the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, is reviving an old tradition, by which the Romanian spirit has successfully managed to affirm its dual cultural appurtenance: on the one hand, to the Latin West, and on the other, to the Byzantine East. Even though, due to their Roman descent – evident in their language, toponymy, naming conventions and even in their approach to Christianity – Romanians can rightly claim their descent from the great family of Western European cultures, the New Rome of the East still managed to leave a visible impact upon this people. Their church, the observance of Byzantine-Orthodox rites, the use of Slavonic for mediaeval Church writings as well as for the chancelleries of the period and in Romanian mediaeval culture on the whole, the use of the Cyrillic alphabet until the second half of the 19th century, the successive rounds of Phanariote rule during the Enlightenment, together with a certain Levantine forma mentis, have allowed this people to rightly consider themselves the last Eastern descendants of Rome, in a space that carried forward the memory of old Rome, yet with  a Greek and Slavonic substrate. Byzantium, often called “the Empire of the Romans”, with an Imperator Romanorum at its head, created - as Dimitri Obolenski would have said – a veritable Commonwealth of Nations in this region, and one that exerted a powerful influence over Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. Yet, at the same time, this same Commonwealth was illuminating the West, reviving Greco-Latin classicism during a dark time in Western history. Without the Greco-Roman traditions, carefully preserved over the centuries in the East and expanded upon after 1453, Western Europe would have been much worse off, and the Renaissance would have certainly had a different trajectory. As such, “the two lungs of Europe”, to quote Pope John Paul II, were reunited in a remarkable synthesis, one that to this day awaits passionate researchers and academics to truly bring it to light.

The Annual School of Byzantine Studies in Bucharest is a remarkable opportunity to foster interest in an original, creative and lengthy civilization, one that Nicolae Iorga called a “Byzantium after Byzantium – Byzance après Byzance”. We greatly appreciate the initiative of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization to undertake this project, and we would like to take this opportunity to extend our congratulations to President Constantinescu for his effort in continuing to promote such a profound academic initiative in an ever faster and more superficial world. We wish great success to all the participants and invited speakers in deciphering a world whose plenary influences on our contemporary society are still being brought to light, a world which can help more wisely shape our future.”

 

ÉCOLE DES HAUTES ÉTUDES EN SCIENCES SOCIALES    

Prof. dr. Paolo Odorico, director științific al Școlii Anuale de Studii Bizantine:

Professor Paolo Odorico, Scientific Director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies:

“Romania is a country that, given its relatively recent period in which history was all but banished from society”

“Long ago, I started a summer school in Greece, that had tremendous success which continues to this day. Last year, thanks to the efforts on the part of CeReFREA – that is to say, of Professor Pânzaru -, on the part of the University of Bucharest and with perhaps a slightly crazy level of enthusiasm on the part of Ana – Maria Răducan, we successfully established a summer university in Romania. I am amazed to see the level of development and the importance placed on the humanities in Romania. I had three doctoral students, now all PhDs, from Romania, and it was impossible to distinguish between them in terms of their academic proficiency. Perhaps the best-known today is Andrei Timotin, now the Director of the Institute for South-East European Studies. He was my student. The other two, in turn, are destined for great academic careers. And this is because Romania has at its disposal colossal intellectual resources that today, unfortunately, are sorely lacking in the West. Imagine that, in France, the study of Greek is practically extinct, and the study of Latin is almost non-existent. The humanities are no longer taken into account, the main focus being the hard sciences that have a say in the economy. Can you imagine a society without a humanist culture, without a culture of letters? This is the reality. Today, we are at the stage where Voltaire could never find an editor, since it would most certainly not be profitable to publish him. The slumber of reason births nightmares.

Byzantine Studies is also a submerged field. Why study Byzantium, in the end? Because it carries significant meaning, and a great Byzantine, Orthodox tradition. I do not wish to equate Byzantium with the Church, but I must stress the reality of this observable fact, this interwoven mental structure so thoroughly Eastern. On the other hand, Byzantium has for the longest time been demonized by the West. Now, things are actually changing. For the past twenty years, we have witnessed an enormous development of the field of Byzantine Studies. Picture that now, on the brink of retirement, I have 18 doctoral students from across the globe, and my last cohort has students coming from as far as China, Korea, Canada, Mexico and Argentina, countries that most definitely did not have a Byzantine past.

Why, then, study Byzantium? Because Byzantium is the foundation of Eastern Europe, which is just as European as the other Europe. Westerners are often mistaken equating Europe with Charlemagne. Well, false! There are two Europes, one just as European as the other, and we Westerners look at Byzantium, at Eastern Europe, at what we could have become but did not. After so many years of demonizing and condemning Byzantium, now is the time of our resurgence and that of scouring society for those forces that still believe in humanist values. Romania is a country that is now opening up tremendously, after so many years of post-war hardship and following a relatively recent period in which history was all but banished from society.”

 

UNIVERSITÉ PARIS 1 (PANTHÉON – SORBONNE)

A message from Professor Michel Kaplan, PhD, Centre des Recherches et Civilisation Byzantines et du Proche Orient Médiéval:

“The wealth of Byzantine heritage in Romania completely justifies the creation of such an Annual School”

“The links between Romania and the Byzantine civilization, as well as the wealth of Byzantine heritage in Romania completely justify the creation of this School. I would have loved to take part in it, as I took part last year; unfortunately, I cannot for reasons beyond my control. I sincerely regret not being able to attend, and I would like to sincerely thank Charis Messis for kindly stepping in as my replacement at such short notice. I know you are in safe hands with him.

The field of Byzantine Studies is a difficult one, and that is why I have always supported Professor Paolo Odorico’s efforts of creating Summer Schools dedicated to the field, that allow young Byzantine scholars to acquire a more thorough understanding of the progress of research across the various specializations of Byzantine Studies. Such schools allow young researchers to embrace the scientific mind-set and acquire an openness to cross-disciplinary interference that they couldn’t otherwise find, had they remained content with the exact fields of their respective specializations.”

 

THE REGIONAL FRANCOPHONE CENTRE FOR ADVANCED RESEARCH IN SOCIAL SCIENCES AT THE UNIVERSITY OF BUCHAREST

Prof.dr. Ioan Pânzaru, director CEREFREA:

Professor Ioan Pânzaru, PhD, Director of CeReFREA:

“In Romania, the field of Byzantine Studies has evolved on its home soil”

“I would only like to add that, in Romania, the field of Byzantine Studies has evolved on its home soil. There had of course existed a great tradition of Byzantine Studies before World War II, a tradition that somehow persisted through the dark years of communism thanks to the efforts of the Orthodox Church. There was an established tradition, there was the Philokalia, there were numerous studies in patrology, we have never ceased translating... Yet I wish to point out, as Director of the Francophone Centre, that with regard to Byzantine Studies there was always a close collaboration between French and Romanian researchers in the field, beginning with Nicolae Iorga, Berger, Charles Etienne etc.

Before the War, an Institute of Byzantine Studies was created by the Assumptionist Fathers in Bucharest. They only recently returned, and have picked up where they had left off. Before the war, they had a monastery at Blaj, where Father Ademar Mercks would often travel to, and where they opened a boarding school for poor children, which were taught by Cardinal Todea, with which Mercks was on very good terms.

French culture did indeed for the longest time have a tradition of disdain and hatred towards Byzantium, as Byzantium was associated with the infamy of the West, so to speak, especially with regard to religious tolerance. This French tradition is primarily owed to Voltaire, whose works, as rightly has been pointed out, are no longer in demand.

Yet by the end of the 19th century, depictions of Byzantium veered towards violence, for example in the incredibly successful works of Victorien Sardou, or in the role of Empress Theodora, played by Sarah Bernhardt. All these developments were keenly followed by the Romanian public. Concurrently, there was also the famous Jean Lombard – famous at the time, as he is mostly forgotten today – and his opera containing bizarre and extravagant intrigues, expressly titled “Byzance” and which reminds the viewer of Sallambô in its dramatic description of the horrors that would take place in Constantinople.

Furthermore, we should mention Paul Adam, a very interesting character as he was a specialist in Greek. He translated works of Greek patrology never before translated into French, directly from the sources. Among others, in his novel titled “Irène et les eunuques”, which speaks of the re-establishing of the true faith by empress Irene, he stresses at length the plots hatched between the eunuchs at the palace, with particular attention to the eunuch Starurakios, Stavrakios or Stavrikios – however you wish to call him and, among others, recounts the famous beauty contest held in order to find a wife for Emperor Konstantinos Isauros. The chosen bride is a particularly beautiful, particularly virtuous young woman, the daughter of a saint, called Mary of Amnia. For us, those versed in Romanian literature, this has strong familiar echoes of the famous Mihail Sadoveanu – famous to Romanians – who, in his novel “The Golden Branch”, described exactly the same scene and I cannot help but think that he was familiar with the work of Paul Adam, which had come out ten years prior, from which he carried over the essential aspects of the scene. He writes it in pages that owe nothing to his French influence, untranslatable pages of breath-taking beauty. Perhaps someone, someday, will take on the task of translating “The Golden Branch” into the French. It recounts exactly the same history, only with a romanticist inflection. Mary of Amnia is in love with a young and handsome monk, a Dacian, the famous Kesarion Breb. Their love is ideal, yet Kesarion Breb returns to the mountains of Wallachia to continue his ancestral rites – rites which are, at best, ambiguously Christian, with strong undertones of pre-Christian pagan rituals in honour of the god Zamolxis. I believe Paul Adam and Mihail Sadoveanu have found an artistic niche all their own, and have a remarkable connection to one another.”

 

THE INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE, CULTURE AND SPIRITUALITY AT THE “OVIDIUS” UNIVERSITY IN CONSTANŢA

Prof.dr. Daniela Țurcanu Caruțiu, director al Institutului de Știință, Cultură și Spiritualitate:

Professor Daniela Ţurcanu Caruțiu, Director of the Institute of Science, Culture and Spirituality:

“Our institutions are committed to jointly organizing the Annual School of Byzantine Studies”

“This summer, the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization entered a partnership accord with the Institute of Science, Culture and Spirituality at the “Ovidius” University in Constanța, through which our two institutions committed to the joint organization of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies. We aimed, and hopefully will have succeeded, to provide you with optimal conditions for the activities of the Summer School, both with regard to the locations of the lectures themselves, and to the accommodation of the participants. After arriving in Constanța, I will be able to show you several of the most important archaeological sites in Dobrogea, sites of particular relevance for the Byzantine culture and civilization in the region. Beginning from Tomis – modern Constanța – we will follow two routes:  one northwards, along the shore of the Black Sea, where we will visit the citadels at Histria, Argamum, Enisala and Halmyris in Murighiol, and the other westwards, towards the Danube and Carsium – modern Hârşova. I will have the honour of presenting my passion and field of study, cultural heritage, with a lecture on Byzantine art in relation to Christianity. It is my hope that the proceedings of the Summer School of Byzantine Studies will be a tremendous success, and I warmly await your arrival in Constanța two days from now.

 

September 12th, 2018

The day was spent under the aegis of that concept put forward by the great historian Nicolae Iorga, of a Byzance après Byzance – Byzantium after Byzantium. The participants to the School were thus able to discover, with wonder and fascination, the church and art collection at the Stavropoleos Monastery, which through its architecture and decoration extends the glorious tradition of Byzantium all the way to the 18th century. Guided by the monastery’s erudite and soft-spoken guide, Sister Aglae Văetiş, the students were introduced to a universe of solemn mystery of a church which safeguards rare pieces of post-Byzantine art and monastic sensitivity: tens of manuscripts, cult writings and icons. The themed visit also included visits to other monuments representative of the post-Byzantine history of Bucharest over the last three centuries: Manuc’s Inn, the last surviving caravanserai in Europe, the Old Court palace, the first princely court in Bucharest, as well as the sumptuous Cotroceni National Palace, which remarkably blends the fatuousness and glamour of a royal palace with the elegance and refinement of the architecture of the monastery commissioned on the premises by Ştefan Cantacuzino towards the end of the 17th century. In the afternoon, the participants to the School of Byzantine Studies made their way to the Mogoşoaia Palace, site of the consecration of a monastery in 1702 by Constantin Brâncoveanu, at whose court was fostered a true Byzantine revival. The art and architectural style pioneered during his reign are a fortunate blend of local artistic traditions with the Byzantine architectural mind-set, embracing a number of Oriental influences and even some of the Western Renaissance particularly those of the Florentine School.

 

September 13th, 2018

The students visited the headquarters of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, from where they made their way to the Roman-Byzantine archaeological site at Durostorum (Silistra, Bulgaria), an old military and religious centre in Moesia and the site of a number of Christian martyrdoms in the 4th century, such as those of Julius the Veteran, Daisie or Emilian of Durostorum. Along the way, and especially during the ferry crossing of the Danube, the participants were able to admire the beauty and natural wealth of the Dobrogean landscape. In the shadow of the ruins at Durostorum, Professor Alexandros Alexakis (University of Ioannina, Greece) evoked the military confrontation of 971 AD, as recounted by chroniclers John Skylitzes and Leon the Dean, during which Byzantine forces under the command of Emperor John Tzimiskes reconquered the fortress from Tsar Svyatoslav I of Kiev. The city was then renamed to Theodoropolis, from the name of St. Theodorus Stratilates, who is rumoured to have secured victory for the Byzantines. The students then visited the museum at Adamclisi, especially designed to house all the bas-reliefs and the colossal trophy of the monument at Tropaeum Traiani, together with all the archaeological material discovered in the Roman-Byzantine citadel located nearby.

 

September 14th, 2018

The day was dedicated to lectures from Professor Charis Messis, PhD (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris, France) and Professor Athanasios Semoglou, PhD (“Aristotle” University in Thessaloniki). Charis Messis presented the subfields, the instruments and the methodological difficulties of hagiography, on which a wealth of literature was written in Late Antiquity. Professor Messis underlined the evolution of Byzantine – but also Byzantinologists’ own – perceptions of this constantly evolving literary genre, which closely followed the literary trends and artistic tendencies of Byzantine society and which the clergy constantly tried to censor in accordance with the appropriate intellectual criteria of a pious Christian. Be it the naïve hagiography of Late Antiquity, the rhetorical and sophisticated forms of the High Byzantine period, or the classicist attitudes dominant during the Palaiologos dynasty, the heroes presented to the Byzantine public – the saint, the monk or the hermit – have a timeless history as perennial tropes which continue to foster interest and fascination. In turn, Professor Semoglou spoke about the particularities of fortified Byzantine cities, at the same time laboriously and subtly reconstructing the history of the mosaic found in the apsis of the Latomos Monastery (Hosios David) in Thessaloniki.

 

September 15th, 2018

Professor Athanasios Semoglou, PhD, ingeniously highlighted the profound hermeneutical content and the scheme of the rich iconography found at the famous Palaeo-Christian depiction at Hosios David, portraying a beardless young Christ in a mandorla. Associated Lecturer Adriana Cîteia, from the “Ovidius” University in Constanța, explored the notion of the frontier, both in a purely geographical, spatial sense and in its symbolic representations in Byzantine imagination. The flexibility of the frontiers reflected the dynamics of the relationships between the Empire and barbarians, and served to define a space within which a particular identity could be crafted along political and religious lines. In turn, Gabriel Talmațchi, PhD, from the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța meticulously focused on the iconographic representations on the coinage minted in Histria in the late Hellenistic period – according to him, the effigy of the god Helios would signify the consecration of an official cult of Helios at Histria and in other cities on the Black Sea, which had strong commercial ties to the island of Rhodes. In the afternoon, the Masters and PhD students in attendance had the opportunity of presenting their research themes and to receive suggestions and further insight from their colleagues and professors.

 

September 16th, 2018

The participants had the opportunity to visit the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța, one of the organizers of the School, and to admire a number of artefacts of the millennial history of Dobrogea, as well as the Mosaic Edifice, a monument unique in Eastern Europe due to its sheer size and quality of preservation. Also, Professor Alexandros Alexakis, PhD (University of Ioannina, Greece) presented the fundamentals of the field of palaeography, a discipline predating philology and textual criticism, and offered representative examples of types of handwriting, different materials and of a number of writing implements.

 

September 17th, 2018

The Annual School of Byzantine Studies continued, in the monumental Painted Hall of the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța, by highlighting the diversity of approaches to Byzantine representations. Professor Polymnia Katsoni, PhD (The “Aristotle” University in Thessaloniki, Greece) elegantly tackled the topic of coinage and the fiscal administration of Byzantium, highlighting the centuries of tax exempt privileges granted to certain categories of individuals or to certain cities. Later, Professor Alexandros Alexakis, PhD (University of Ioannina, Greece) continued his foray into the study of palaeography by presenting the techniques used to decipher Byzantine writings, while Professor Paolo Odorico, PhD (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris), the Scientific Director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, spoke about the ways in which both the Byzantines and Byzantinologists conceive and express their own literary representations, and presented a recommended reading list tailored according to the audiences targeted by Byzantine writers and by the socio-political context within which they would write. After the lectures, the Masters and PhD students once again had the opportunity to present their research themes and projects, and to receive suggestions and invaluable insight from their peers.

 

September 18th, 2018

The day was spent visiting the citadel of Histria, under the captivating and erudite guidance of Associated Lecturer Valentin Bottez, PhD, of the Faculty of History at the University of Bucharest. The archaeological site at Histria is one of the most important sites in Romania, due to both the quality of the finds uncovered here, and the sheer volume of artefacts unearthed.  It is singular also in the fact that the site spans an uninterrupted period of over 1000 years, ranging from the 7th century BC to the 7th century AD. The archaeological digs carried out in the last several years have yielded important results: the dig by the team from the University of Bucharest in the Acropolis – Centre-South sector – of which team Lecturer Valentin Bottez is also part, together with Associated Lecturers Alexandra Ţârlea, PhD and Alexandra Lițu, PhD  - has led to the discovery of a new insula of Roman-Byzantine habitation dating from the 6th century, the first at the site to be analysed in its entirety using contemporary and interdisciplinary methods.

 

September 19th, 2018

On the last day of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, the participants were treated to a follow-up lecture on the numismatics of the Byzantine Empire between the 9th and 11th centuries, from Professor Polymnia Katsoni, PhD (The “Aristotle” University in Thessaloniki, Greece). Furthermore, Professor Daniela Ţurcanu Caruțiu, PhD, Director of the Institute for Science, Culture and Spirituality at the “Ovidius” University in Constanța, presented a vibrant image of a Byzantine universe filled with passion and colour under the watchful icons that are the physical testament to the veracity of her arguments. In turn, Professor Dan Grigorescu, the Scientific Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, brought the proceedings of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies to a close, expressing his gratitude to the individuals and the institutions that made this event possible, and at the same time sharing his hope that the project of this School will be carried forward in the following years. At the close of the proceedings, those in attendance were awarded their diplomas of participation in a festive atmosphere.

 

 

BYZANTIUM REPRESENTATIONS

HISTORY, LITERATURE AND ART

11th -19th September 2018
Bucharest, Constanța

The Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization, in partnership with the University of Bucharest, ”Ovidius” University of Constanța, the National University of Political Studies and Public Administration and the National History and Archaeology Museum of Constanța  have established, under the scientific mentorship of Professor Paolo Odorico (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris), a School dedicated to Byzantine studies, under the title of Byzantium Representations – History, Literature and Art to take place in Bucharest and Constanţa, from 11th to 19th September 2018.

Professor Paolo Odorico, PhD (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris), scientific director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies
Ana-Maria Răducan, PhD (Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization), project manager of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies

 

THEMATIC GUIDE – THE ANNUAL SCHOOL OF BYZANTINE STUDIES – Byzantium Representations in History, Literature and Art

 

 

 

read here THEMATIC GUIDE – THE ANNUAL SCHOOL OF BYZANTINE STUDIES – Byzantium Representations in History, Literature and Art

 

 

 

 

 

 

Candidates from Albania, Armenia, Cyprus, Russian Federation, Greece, Italy, the UK, Republic of Moldova, Romania and Turkey to attend the Annual School of Byzantine Studies

 

Following a rigorous evaluation process, the Selection Commission has nominated 16 candidates to attend the 2018 edition of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies – “Representations of Byzantium in history, literature and art”. The successful applicants come from 10 different countries, divided as follows: Albania (1), Armenia (1), Cyprus (1), Greece (3), Italy (1), the Republic of Moldova (1), Romania (5), the Russian Federation (1), Turkey (1) and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (1).

The candidates chosen by the Commission will have their accommodation and meals provided for them for the entire duration of the Summer School both in Bucharest and in Constanța, and will be able to attend the field trips organized as part of the programme free of charge. Moreover, the successful applicants will be contacted on an individual basis by the organizers of the event in order to finalize the arrangements of their arrival in Bucharest.

The 2018 edition of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies – “Representations of Byzantium in history, literature and art”, represents a significant effort on the part of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Levant Culture and Civilization to consolidate the available knowledge in the field, but also to facilitate the interaction between renowned specialists, on a national and international level. Through the participation of scholars of great prestige in Byzantine Studies, such as Professors Paolo Odorico (EHESS, Paris), Michel Kaplan (Université Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris), Christian Gastgeber (from the Academy of Vienna), Alexander Alexakis (University of Yoannina) and Athanasios Semoglou (University of Thessaloniki), the Summer School aims to create a space for a lively debate and interaction between Masters, doctoral students and young researchers on the one hand, and established researchers and professors in the field on the other. At the same time, it attempts to create a space for the dissemination of information, and for the emulation of cutting-edge work and research methods, applied deliberately to specific themes such as literary and hagiographic representations, numismatic perspectives, the management of the borders of the Byzantine Empire and urban perspectives on Byzantine architecture.

 

CALL FOR ATTENDANCE

 

The Organizing Committee of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, „Representations of Byzantium in history, literature and art” is pleased to welcome members of the public to attend the proceedings, and to this end invites interested parties to submit their applications for attendance.

There are 10 seats available to those wishing to audit the lectures of the invited speakers, as well as the moderated debates held during the Q&A sessions. The attendees will be invited to the proceedings of the Summer School that will take place at the „Ovidius” University and at the Museum of History and Archaeology in Constanța.

For objective reasons, the organizers unfortunately cannot provide attendees with meals or accommodation in Constanța, nor can they guarantee their transport to the historical and touristic sites that will be visited in accordance to the programme of the event, as provision of these facilities is reserved exclusively to the visiting professors and bursaries enrolled in the Summer School.

Those who wish to apply are kindly asked to submit an e-mail to office@institutlevant.ro, expressing their interest as well as providing the following required information: their academic status (undergraduate, master’s degree, PhD, researcher et. al.), their current field of activity, their telephone number and an e-mail address that they can be reached at.

Only applications submitted by the 31st of August 2018 at 14:00 Romanian time will be taken into consideration.

At the end of the Summer School those attending will each receive diplomas of participation, that attest to their presence at the proceedings as auditing members of the public.

 

CALL FOR APPLICATION

The School is open for Masters’ students, as well as doctoral and postdoctoral researchers. Participants should be fluent in English and French, the official languages of the event. At the end of the event, participants shall receive certificates of attendance. Annexed to this call, one can find the preliminary program of the School and a brief description of the Roman-Byzantine sites of the trips.

The organizers are launching a call for application for 30 students and researchers. The participation consists of free of charge attendance to all lectures, trips to archaeological sites and one meal/day. Additionally, 16 of the participants shall benefit from free accommodation in Bucharest and Constanța. Their selection shall be performed based on scientific and academic criteria.

Deadline for applications:

Candidates should send their applications to the following e-mail addresses: office@institutlevant.ro  and raducan_ana_maria@institutlevant.ro, until August 20th, 2018, 16.00 (Romanian time), and should comprise:

A motivation letter (of max. 1 page)

A CV clearly highlighting their studies, field of activity and a list of publications

Any other document considered relevant to the application.

The CV, the motivation letter and the other convenient documents (if needed) will be written in English.

Selected participants shall be notified by August 22nd, 2018.

For any other pieces of information, please contact Ana-Maria Răducan - raducan_ana_maria@institutlevant.ro.

School dedicated to Byzantine studies, under the title of Byzantium Representations – History, Literature and Art

 

REGULATIONS FOR THE SELECTION OF PARTICIPANTS

 

SECTION 1. THE OFFICIAL ORGANIZER OF THE EVENT

The event is organized and will be hosted by the Institute for the Advanced Study of the Culture and Civilization of the Levant, henceforth ISACCL. The participants at this event are required to follow the terms and conditions of the regulations for the selection of participants as described herein, which will be made public and can be found on the website https://institutlevant.ro/. ISACCL reserves the right to modify the present regulations at a later date, with the eventual changes coming into force only after they have been presented publicly on the website.

 

SECTION 2. CONDITIONS OF ELIGIBILITY

The eligibility of the participants to the event will be determined based on the following criteria:

  1. That they are at most 35 years of age and are either students enrolled in a Master’s course, a doctoral programme, or that are embarking on early post-doctoral research. It is also required that applicants have a working knowledge of the two languages the event will be held in, namely French and English.
  2. The application will necessarily consist of a motivation letter (of maximum one page in length), and a resumé which clearly states the topics they have studied, their area of expertise and any eventual publications, and may also include any other document that the candidate should consider relevant for their application. The application, once completed, will be submitted to the following e-mails: office@institutlevant.ro and/or raducan_ana_maria@institutlevant.ro, at the latest by the 20th of August 2018 at 16:00 hours, Romanian time.

 

SECTION 3. THE SELECTION PROCESS

The selection process will consist of the following stages:

1. Enrolment of participants (8-20 August 2018) – through submitting their application to the following e-mails: office@institutlevant.ro and/or raducan_ana_maria@institutlevant.ro, at the latest by the 20th of August 2018 at 16:00 hours, Romanian time.

2. Selection of participants (21 August 2018) – will be undertaken by a specially designated Commision charged with the review of candidates’ applications.

The Commision is comprised of:

  • univ. dr. Emil Constantinescu, Chairman of the Scientific Council of the ISACCL
  • Andreea Grecu, General director of the ISACCL
  • univ. dr. Paolo Odorico, Scientific director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies
  • Ana-Maria Răducan, ISACCL Expert in Roman and Byzantine Culture, and Secretary of the Commission.
  • Oana-Elena Brânda, ISACCL Expert (alternate member).

Criteria for selection

            The selection of individual participants will also take into consideration the applicants’ location at the time of application (with a view to maximizing the input of candidates from as many different countries and academic contexts as possible, especially from those countries that have a direct relationship to the Levant, as well as prioritizing candidates from different cities within Romania), the proportion of male to female applicants, as well as an ensuring an equitable balance between applicants undergoing Master’s courses, Doctoral courses and postgraduate study respectively, and also between their specialisation (history, theology, literature, arts). Candidates will be scored on a point scale of up to 100 points, divided according to the following criteria:

A. The candidate’s motivation for taking part in the Annual School of Byzantine studies – a total of 40 points, awarded as follows:

  • 40 points: a very well-structured motivation letter, with an excellent overlap with the candidate’s previous field of study, expertise and interests, with a very clear view on how the Annual School of Byzantine Studies will be of use to the candidate for their further development.
  • 30 points: A well-structured motivation letter, with a good overlap with the candidate’s previous field of study, expertise and interests, but which does not adequately convey the way in which the Annual School of Byzantine Studies would be useful to the candidate for their further development.
  • 20 points: A weakly structured motivation letter, which does not show either the candidate’s affinity to the field of Byzantine studies, or the way in which the Annual School of Byzantine Studies will be useful to the candidate for their further development.
  • 10 points: A very weakly structured motivation letter, which expresses neither the candidate’s affinity to the field of Byzantine studies, nor a way in which the Annual School of Byzantine Studies will be useful to the candidate for their further development.
  • Candidates can receive an additional point tally of up to 20 points should they be able to convincingly convey the lack of access to some of the newest developments in the field, or astutely comment on the scientific calibre of the specialists invited to the event.

B. The resumé and the list of publications – 60 points, awarded as follows:

  • 20 points awarded for specialist studies in the field of Byzantine studies (history, literature, theology, history of art)
  • 20 points awarded for the publication of relevant academic pieces in the field of Byzantine studies (20 points for 4 or more publications, 15 points for 3 publications, 10 points for 2 publications, 1 point for a single published piece, and 0 points for lack of publication history)
  • 20 points awarded for the participation at various conferences, summer schools or other events pertaining to the field of Byzantine studies (20 points for 4 or more events attended, 15 points for 3 events attended, 10 points for 2 events attended, 5 points for a single attended event, and 0 points for not having participated in any event)

Up to an additional 20 points, arrived at individually on a case by case basis, can be awarded to those interested parties that support their candidature with any other documents that could be relevant in assisting their application (details of a precarious financial situation, letters of recommendation, various diplomas and other earned certificates that fall outside of the ones outlined above, etc.).

3. The final list of accepted applications will be published on the Institute’s website https://institutlevant.ro/ on the 23rd of August 2018 at 08:00 hours, Romanian time.

All participants will receive an e-mail containing the results of their respective applications on the 23rd of August 2018, from 08:30 onwards.

ISACCL, as the organizer of the event, reserves the right to modify and extend the deadlines for the previous sections, should enough candidates fail to apply by them.

 

SECTION 4. PROTECTION OF PERSONAL DATA.

ISACCL assumes the responsibility of respecting the legal provisions in place regarding the protection of personal data obtained over the organizational period for, as well as the duration of, the event. Therefore, ISACCL is committed to maintaining the confidentiality of all personal data of the participants at the event, as well as to only use data thereby obtained responsibly, in accordance with current legislation.

 

 

COMMITMENT

click here for download Commitment

 

PROGRAM

 

Tuesday, September 11th

18:00                    The opening of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies, 2018 edition. Senate Hall, University of Bucharest (bd. Mihail Kogălniceanu nr. 36-46)

Welcome messages from:

Professor Emil Constantinescu, PhD, President of the Scientific Council of the ISACCL

Professor Paolo Odorico, PhD, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) Paris and  Scientific Director of the Annual School of Byzantine Studies

Professor Ioan Pânzaru, PhD, Director of the Francophone Regional Centre for Advanced Research in Social Sciences at the University of Bucharest

Professor Ioan-Aurel Pop, PhD, President of the Romanian Academy, member of the Scientific Council of the ISACCL

Professor Mircea Dumitru, PhD, Rector of the University of Bucharets, member of the Scientific Council of the ISACCL

Professor Remus Pricopie, PhD, Rector of the National University of Political Science and Administrative Studies, member of the Scientific Council of the ISACCL

Professor Sorin Rugină, PhD, Rector of the „Ovidius”University, Constanța

Professor Sorin Colesniuc, PhD, Director of the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța

 

Wednesday, September 12thByzance après Byzance themed tour

09:00                    Themed guided tour of the Cotroceni Museum

11:00                     Thematic visit to the Old Quarter of Bucharest – Manuc’s Inn, the Old Court, Stavropoleos Monastery

13:30                     Lunch break

15:30                     Thematic visit to the Mogoşoaia Palace

 

Thursday, September 13th

09:00                     Participants’departure for Constanța

The trip will include guided tours of the Durostorum archaeological site (Bulgaria), Dervent Monastery (with lunch break) and Păcuiul lui Soare (Ostrov County, if weather conditions allow)

18:00                     Accommodation of the participants in Constanța

19:00                     Dinner

 

Friday, September 14th

09:00 – 10:00                    Lecture delivered by Professor Paolo Odorico, PhD (EHESS, Paris), Literary representations in Byzantium (I)

10:00 – 10:30                     Q & A session

10:30 – 10;45                     Coffee break

10:45 – 11:45                     Lecture delivered by Professor Athanasios Semoglou, PhD („Aristotle”University of Thessaloniki, Greece), Urban representations in Byzantine architecture (I)

11:45 – 12:15                    Q & A session

12:15 – 14:30                     Lunch break

14:30 – 15:30                     Lecture delivered by Professor Charris Messis, PhD (EHESS,Paris,)

15:30 – 16:00                     Q & A session

16:00 – 16:15                    Coffee break

16:15 – 17:30                     Presentation of the research work of MA and PhD participants (I)

17:30 – 18:00                     Q & A session

19:00                                     Dinner

 

Saturday, September 15th

09:00 – 10:00                    Lecture delivered by Professor Athanasios Semoglou, PhD („Aristotle” University of Thessaloniki, Greece), Urban representations in Byzantine architecture (II)

10:00 – 10:15                     Q & A session

10:30 – 10:45                     Coffee break

10:45 – 11:45                     Lecture by Associated Lecturer Andreea Cîteia („Ovidius” University, Constanța), Representations of the frontier in the Byzantine Empire

11:45 – 12:15                     Q & A session

12:15 – 14:30                     Lunch break

14:30 – 15:30                     Lecture delivered by Dr. Gabriel Talmațchi (Museum of National History and Aechaeology, Constanța), Byzantine numismatic representations.

15:30 – 16:00                     Q & A session

16:00 – 16:15                     Coffee break

16:15 – 17:30                     Presentation of the research work of MA and PhD participants (II)

17:30 – 18:00                     Q & A session

19:00                                     Dinner

 

Sunday, September 16th

11:00                                     City tour – a guided tour of the Museum of National History and Archaeology in Constanța, and of the Mosaic Edifice

13:30                                     Lunch break

15:00                                     In situ lecture delivered by Professor Alexander Alexakis, PhD (University of Ioannina, Greece), Representations in Byzantine paleography (I)

19:00                                     Dinner

 

Monday, September 17th

09:00 – 10:00                     Lecture delivered by Professor Polymnia Katsoni, PhD (University of Thessaloniki, Greece)

10:00 – 10:30                     Q & A session

10:30 – 10:45                     Coffee break

10:45 – 11:45                     Lecture delivered by Professor Charris Messis, PhD (EHESS,Paris,)

11:45 -  12:15                    Q & A session

12:15 – 14:30                     Lunch break

14:30 – 15:30                     Lecture delivered by Professor Alexander Alexakis, PhD (University of Ioannina, Greece), Representations in Byzantine paleography (II)

15:30 – 16:00                     Q & A session

16:00 – 16:15                     Coffee break

16:15 – 17:15                     Lecture delivered by Professor Paolo Odorico, PhD (EHESS, Paris), Literary representations in Byzantium (II)

17:15 – 18:30                     Q & A session

19:00                                     Dinner

 

Tuesday, September 18th

08:00                                     Trip from Constanța to Histria – visit of the archaeological site of Histria

In situ lecture delivered by Associated Lecturer Valentin Bottez, PhD (University of Bucharest), Provincial representations of the Imperial Cult

12:30                                     Lunch break

15:00                                     Visit to the archaeological site at Enisala

17:00                                     Visit to the archaeological site at Halmyris

20:00                                     Return to Constanța. Dinner

 

Wednesday, September 19th

09:00 – 9:30                       Lecture delivered by Professor Daniela Țurcanu Căruțiu, PhD (Director of the Institute of Science, Culture and Spirituality at the “Ovidius” University in Constanța)

09:30 - 10:00                      Lecture delivered by  Dr. Ana-Maria Răducan (ISACCL), Representations of Eros in Byzantine theology

10:00 – 10:30                     Q & A session

10:30 – 10:45                     Coffee break

10:45 – 11:45                     Lecture delivered by Professor Polymnia Katsoni, PhD (University of Thessaloniki)

12:00                                     Awarding of certificates of attendance on behalf of the ISACCL, by Professor Dan Grigorescu, Scientific Director of the ISACCL

13:00                                     Lunch break

15:00                                     Visit of the archaeological site at Carsium (Hârşova)

21:00                                     Participants’ return to Bucharest

 

Themed tour Byzance après Byzance

Bucharest is Romania’s capital and the largest city of the country. According to the legend, the name of the city derives from Bucur, a shepherd who is said to have established a nearby hermitage. The first historical record of Bucharest dates back to 1459, under voivode Vlad Țepeș. Between 1459 and 1660, Bucharest was the seat of Wallachian rulers, at the same time as the old capital of Târgoviște was still in function; after 1660, Bucharest remained the sole capital. Beginning with the XIVth century, the city underwent a great economic development, as a result of the trade connections with the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish merchants, and would extend gradually until 1862, when it became the capital of the United Romanian Principalities and later of Romania. Its elegant architecture and atmosphere brought it the title of “Little Paris”, during interwar years.

 

Guided tours of the archaeological sites

 

In ancient times, Dobrogea was known as Schythia Minor or Mikra Skythia. In the Ist century BC, the respective territory was under the influence of the Pontic kingdom of Mithridate the VIth Eupator. From 28 BC it was integrated in the Roman province of Moesia Inferior by Emperor Augustus. Most Roman-Byzantine fortresses have been established by the Romans on the site of former Getic settlements: Tropaeum Traiani, Capidava, Carsium, Beroe, Troesmis, Arrubium, Dinogetia, Noviodunum, Ibida, Durostorum. Most of them existed until the VIIth century, when they were abandoned. Others have an older history, dating back to the VIIth century BC, when Greek colonists established here several fortresses, such as Histria, Tomis, Callatis, Argamum, Halmyris, Aegyssos, Axiopolis.

After 395, Dobrogea became part of the Byzantine Empire. Under the rule of Justinian (525-548), many of these fortresses were restored. In the VIth century, the Church and religion itself underwent changes, which resulted in 15 bishoprics of Scythia Minor, subordinated to the Tomis Metropolitan; the large number of Christian basilicas is an indicator of the great importance allotted to Christianity in these areas. Dobrogea was then part of the First Bulgarian Czardom (VIIth-Xth centuries), of the Byzantine Empire (Xth-XIth centuries), of the Second Bulgarian Czardom (XIIth-XIIIth centuries), of Wallachia (in the XIVth century) and of the Ottoman Empire (XVth-XIXth centuries). After 1878, the northern part of Dobrogea joined the Romanian Principalities.

 

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