Library News

Lecture: Byzantine Empire Decline

Please join us in the Hatfield room, Tuesday, October 16th at 7:30 p.m. for a lecture on:  The 11th Century Decline of the Byzantine Empire Seen Through Contemporary Eyes.

Onassis Scholar

Dr. Dimitris TsougarakisIonian University – Greece
Professor of Byzantine History
Department of History

A number of modern scholars maintain that the decline of the 11th century was not brought about by practices adopted by emperors who came to the throne after the death of Basil II, but was the result of a process that had started much earlier, and at any rate it was something that Byzantium could not avoid.  In this lecture Dr. Tsougarakis will examine the testimony of almost all of the contemporary historians who narrate the historical events frequently as eyewitnesses; he will consider the validity of their testimony and take a critical view of their opinions; and he will come to the conclusion that the older view, the one which considered that the 11th century decline was caused by the neglect and hostile attitude towards the army by the central government in Constantinople, is the most convincing as the main – but not the sole – cause.  Some comparisons with modern situations will not be avoided.

Sponsored by the Onassis Foundation, co-sponsored by Willamette University’s Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology.