NEW Women in Purple Rulers of Medieval Byzantium Irene Euphrosyne Theodora Arabs

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Seller: ancientgifts (4,777) 100%, Location: Lummi Island, Washington, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 382413845035 Women in Purple: Rulers of Medieval Byzantium by Judith Herrin. NOTE: We have 75,000 books in our library, almost 10,000 different titles. Odds are we have other copies of this same title in varying conditions, some less expensive, some better condition. We might also have different editions as well (some paperback, some hardcover, oftentimes international editions). If you don’t see what you want, please contact us and ask. We’re happy to send you a summary of the differing conditions and prices we may have for the same title. DESCRIPTION: Hardback with Dust Jacket: 320 pages. Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson (2001).In the eighth and ninth centuries, three Byzantine empresses; Irene, Euphrosyne, and Theodora, changed history. Their combined efforts restored the veneration of icons, saving Byzantium from a purely symbolic and decorative art and ensuring its influence for centuries to come. In this exhilarating and highly entertaining account, one of the foremost historians of the medieval period tells the story of how these fascinating women exercised imperial sovereignty with consummate skill and sometimes ruthless tactics. Though they gained access to the all-pervasive authority of the Byzantine ruling dynasty through marriage, all three continued to wear the imperial purple and wield tremendous power as widows. From Constantinople, their own Queen City, the empresses undermined competitors and governed like men. They conducted diplomacy across the known world, negotiating with the likes of Charlemagne, Roman Popes, and the great Arab Caliph Harun al Rashid. Vehemently rejecting the ban on holy images instituted by their male relatives, Irene and Theodora used craft and power to reverse the official iconoclasm and restore icons to their place of adoration in the Eastern Church. In so doing, they profoundly altered the course of history. The art, and not only the art, of Byzantium, of Islam, and of the West would have been very different without them. As Judith Herrin traces the surviving evidence, she evokes the complex and deeply religious world of Constantinople in the aftermath of Arab conquest. She brings to life its monuments and palaces, its court ceremonies and rituals, the role of eunuchs (the "third sex"), bride shows, and the influence of warring monks and patriarchs. Based on new research and written for a general audience, "Women in Purple" reshapes our understanding of an empire that lasted a thousand years and splashes fresh light on the relationship of women to power. CONDITION: NEW. New hardcover w/dustjacket. Weidenfeld & Nicholson (2001) 320 pages. Unblemished except for very mild edge and corner shelfwear to dustjacket and covers. Pages are pristine; clean, crisp, unmarked, unmutilated, tightly bound, unambiguously unread. Shelfwear to dustjacket is principally in the form of faint crinkling to the spine head and the "tips" (the four open corners of the dustjacket, top and bottom, front and back). Beneath the dustjacket the covers are clean and unsoiled, merely echoing the very mild edge and corner shelfwear of the dustjacket above. Condition is entirely consistent with new stock from a bookstore environment wherein new books might show minor indications of shelfwear, consequence of simply being shelved and re-shelved. Satisfaction unconditionally guaranteed. In stock, ready to ship. No disappointments, no excuses. PROMPT SHIPPING! HEAVILY PADDED, DAMAGE-FREE PACKAGING! #1761e. PLEASE SEE IMAGES BELOW FOR SAMPLE PAGES FROM INSIDE OF BOOK. PLEASE SEE PUBLISHER, PROFESSIONAL, AND READER REVIEWS BELOW. PUBLISHER REVIEW: REVIEW: Judith Herrin evokes the complex and deeply religious world of Constantinople in the aftermath of the Arab conquest of most of its empire. She brings to life its monuments and palaces, its court ceremonies and rituals, the role of eunuchs, and the influence of warring monks and patriarchs. Across four generations, the Empresses Irene, Euphrosyne, and Theodora wielded imperial sovereignty with consummate ruthlessness and skill over the vast empire of Byzantium in the eight and ninth centuries. Their legacy was to restore the veneration of icons, and in so doing, ensure Byzantium's influence for centuries to come. Judith Herrin is Professor of Late Antique and Byzantine Studies and Director of the Centre for Hellenic Studies at King's College London. Her books include "The Formation of Christendom" and "A Medieval Miscellany: The Medieval World in Its Own Words". PROFESSIONAL REVIEWS: REVIEW: Although female rulers were an anomaly during the Middle Ages, Herrin (author of "The Formation of Christendom") chronicles the lives of three eighth- and ninth-century Byzantine women who proved to be exceptions. As emperors' wives, Irene, Euphrosyne and Theodora "exercised imperial power and changed the course of the empire's history in a purposive, deliberate, and connected fashion." Their commitment to preserving the role of Christian icons in worship was especially significant, Herrin argues, since they defied years of opposing edicts and eventually succeeded. Most Byzantine emperors in this period practiced a policy of "iconoclasm": they removed religious icons from churches and monasteries and persecuted those who prayed to them (iconophiles). But in various ways, these women engaged in sweeping reforms of iconoclasm. Irene, the first female emperor of Byzantium, sponsored a 787 council that restored icons to places of worship. Though this was later reversed, Theodora, from her position as widow of the emperor Theophilus, succeeded in 843 in restoring icons to the prominent place to which early Byzantine society had elevated them. Herrin contends that three factors the growing cult of the Virgin as a symbol of female power, a new role for women in establishing claims to the throne and the development of certain court structures such as the role of eunuchs, who were servants of imperial women provided new opportunities for women to rule. Herrin's study provides important glimpses into medieval history as well as the daily lives and rituals of Byzantine imperial women. Eight pages of color illustrations. Though Herrin's tone tends toward the scholarly, her book is the most accessible of the few currently available on this topic. REVIEW: Judith Herrin's book not only illuminates the lives and significance of three medieval Byzantine empresses who are scarcely known outside of the field, but she uses their lives to bring this entire period as well as its history and general significance to life. Through these three extraordinary women, Herrin will introduce a wide public to this important yet neglected period. It is time for a new Byzantium to emerge, and this book is a very good step in that direction. REVIEW: Herrin traces the lives of three Byzantine empresses of the late eighth and early ninth centuries. She deals with the contradictions inherent in being a female ruler and the ways in which the three women used and manipulated the structures and symbols of Byzantine power. The book is lightly footnoted, has an excellent discussion of the problems of finding sources about women during this period, and is written in a clear style accessible to general readers interested in historical biography. REVIEW: A work of remarkable scholarship. Throughout her book, the author explains the court intrigues and theological debates with outstanding clarity. A scholarly study that is written in a clear style eminently accessible to a wider public. It is also superbly illustrated. REVIEW: A scholarly study which opens up a new perspective on a vital period of Byzantine history, and is eminently accessible to a wider public. Herrin is a skilled and sure guide through this barbarous world. READER REVIEWS: REVIEW: This is a very good book. It is academic and well researched, but also very readable. The author focuses in on the lives of three empresses and their importance to the history of the Byzantium Empire, as well as their impact on West European history. There is a very good introductory chapter that lays down the historical backdrop of the Byzantium Empire and the city of Constantinople. From there, the author provides a triple biography of the three empresses, highlighting their characters, importance to politics and religion, and the other main characters in their lives. The author makes a compelling case for the importance of the empresses' efforts to restore the veneration of religious icons, while also highlighting their achievements in both domestic political concerns and foreign relations. The book also contains several excellent maps and beautiful color plates. For anyone interested in women's history, the medieval period, and the Byzantium Empire, this book should greatly satisfy. REVIEW: For anyone with an interest in Byzantine History then this is a must. Herrin's style is very digestible and the subject matter enthralling. You really do get a great insight into these three impressive women and a very vivid picture of the imperial court in Constantinople and all the pomp and ceremony that went with it. Very good. REVIEW: The lives of women rulers of most nations prior to the modern era were not well documented. In the past history was essentially written by men for men, and showed little interest in the experiences of women, whether they were powerful or not. In this book Judith Herrin has reconstructed the lives of three Byzantine empresses of the 8th and 9th Centuries. The lives we are presented with here are those of the empresses Irene, her grand daughter Euphrosyne and Theodora. The lives of these women represent significant episodes in Byzantine history, but it isn't until you read a book like this that you realize how much of Byzantine history has simply been lost and distorted over the centuries. So much so, that it has been difficult to reconstruct the lives of these women in any great detail, especially that of Euphrosyne. Thankfully for those of us who have not read much about Byzantine history the author provides a lengthy introductory section which explains the city history and layout. The hierarchy of the court and the importance of eunuchs to both the empress and the empire and the public rituals important officials were expected to participate in. Empress Irene came from Athens as a young woman and after her husbands death was regent for her son for over 10 years and eventually ruled in her own name for 5 years, an unprecedented act in royal circles in that time. Irene's grand daughter Euphrosyne was "born in the purple", suffered exile in her youth only to be bought back as empress later in life. Her successor was Theodora who has come down to us as a saint for the re-instating of Icons as a tool of worship in Byzantine churches, something which persists to this day. This book covers the years when the veneration of icons ripped the church and Byzantine society apart for close to a century. These empresses were instrumental in the re-instatement of icons as a central item of worship in the Byzantine church. This is an easy to read book, but one that is obviously full of researched depth. It has impressive notes and sources at the back. If you have any curiosity about female rulers of Byzantium this book is a must. REVIEW: Among professional historians, Byzantium is often viewed as a field of study for the specialist. Most primary sources are not translated and lack critical editions. Secondary literature is often difficult to obtain. Judith Herrin is a respected Byzantine scholar, who has worked in the field for a number of years. While some scholars may disagree with Herrin's historical interpretations, approaches to specific subjects, and citations of certain facts, her work on Byzantine imperial women should be regarded as an attempt to recreate and convey for the general reader the personal experience of women's life in the imperial courts of eighth- and ninth-century Byzantium. The three main subjects of her study are the lives of the Byzantine empresses Irene, Euphrosyne, and Theodora. In each case, the book details their relationship to power and their influence on dynastic struggles, particularly emphasizing iconoclasm and the Empire's responses to foreign invasions. The author prefaces her discussion of these lives with an overview of early Byzantine history. At selected points in her study, she treats diverse topics to provide the reader with necessary background. These subjects include the place of eunuchs in imperial life, ecclesiastical organization, patronage, and family commemoration. The study includes a scholarly apparatus and annotated bibliography. Herrin reaches conclusions about the ability of Irene, Euphrosyne, and Theodora to exercise power within a society in which constructed and assigned gender roles subordinated women to male domination. Herrin attributes this power to an availability of three main resources that allow these empresses to legitimate their exceptional behavior. She terms these resources collectively as the "imperial feminine". First is the existence of female power figures and symbols, particularly the Virgin Mary, the divine protector of Constantinople. Second, the essential role of women in constructing imperial dynasties through their fecundity within the context of a centralized court and restrictions on selections of spouses. Third, the tradition of female imperial patronage in establishing religious institutions and acquiring urban space in the capital. The author views the long-term influences of the three empresses as contributing to the protection of Western Europe from an Islamic conquest and the preservation of figurative art. While based in scholarship, the work is not intended to be definitive or exhaustive. In general, Herrin synthesizes her immense study of the primary and secondary literature, projects an individual vision onto the past, and makes a personal statement regarding the experiences of Byzantine women. In this work, the reader gains an understanding of the empresses, ladies in waiting, nuns, and others, as well as the author herself, since much of Herrin's own experience as a woman appears incorporated into the writing. Some may object to this methodology. There are professional historians who write in a detached manner about Byzantine women and the three empresses in question. These writings, however, are often specialized and intended for scholars with a considerable background in the literature. Unlike these studies, the value of a personal statement is its vitality and strength in communicating with a wide circle of readers. Despite certain scientific shortcomings, this is a book with the potential to ignite a genuine interest in Byzantine studies and the general field of women's history. The value of Herrin's work is its effectiveness in conveying the experience of women within an alien culture, completely detached from the present, to the contemporary general reader. It would be an excellent work for introductory classes in historiography, feminist history, and Byzantine studies. The study might also serve as a means for men to apprehend something about the life of women in general, even if the historical context is one that is completely foreign. I always ship books Media Mail in a padded mailer. This book is shipped FOR FREE via USPS INSURED media mail (“book rate”). All domestic shipments and most international shipments will include free USPS Delivery Confirmation (you might be able to update the status of your shipment on-line at the USPS Web Site and free insurance coverage). A small percentage of international shipments may require an additional fee for tracking and/or delivery confirmation. If you are concerned about a little wear and tear to the book in transit, I would suggest a boxed shipment - it is an extra $1.00. Whether via padded mailer or box, we will give discounts for multiple purchases. International orders are welcome, but shipping costs are substantially higher. Most international orders cost an additional $12.99 to $33.99 for an insuredshipment in a heavily padded mailer, and typically includes some form of rudimentary tracking and/or delivery confirmation (though for some countries, this is only available at additional cost). There is also a discount program which can cut postage costs by 50% to 75% if you’re buying about half-a-dozen books or more (5 kilos+). Rates and available services vary a bit from country to country. You can email or message me for a shipping cost quote, but I assure you they are as reasonable as USPS rates allow, and if it turns out the rate is too high for your pocketbook, we will cancel the sale at your request. ADDITIONAL PURCHASES do receive a VERY LARGE discount, typically about $5 per book (for each additional book after the first) so as to reward you for the economies of combined shipping/insurance costs. Your purchase will ordinarily be shipped within 48 hours of payment. We package as well as anyone in the business, with lots of protective padding and containers. All of our shipments are sent via insured mail so as to comply with PayPal requirements. We do NOT recommend uninsured shipments, and expressly disclaim any responsibility for the loss of an uninsured shipment. Unfortunately the contents of parcels are easily “lost” or misdelivered by postal employees – even in the USA. That’s why all of our domestic shipments (and most international) shipments include a USPS delivery confirmation tag; or are trackable or traceable, and all shipments (international and domestic) are insured. We do offer U.S. Postal Service Priority Mail, Registered Mail, and Express Mail for both international and domestic shipments, as well United Parcel Service (UPS) and Federal Express (Fed-Ex). Please ask for a rate quotation. We will accept whatever payment method you are most comfortable with. If upon receipt of the item you are disappointed for any reason whatever, I offer a no questions asked return policy. Send it back, I will give you a complete refund of the purchase price (less our original shipping costs). Most of the items I offer come from the collection of a family friend who was active in the field of Archaeology for over forty years. However many of the items also come from purchases I make in Eastern Europe, India, and from the Levant (Eastern Mediterranean/Near East) from various institutions and dealers. Though I have always had an interest in archaeology, my own academic background was in sociology and cultural anthropology. After my retirement however, I found myself drawn to archaeology as well. Aside from my own personal collection, I have made extensive and frequent additions of my own via purchases on Ebay (of course), as well as many purchases from both dealers and institutions throughout the world - but especially in the Near East and in Eastern Europe. I spend over half of my year out of the United States, and have spent much of my life either in India or Eastern Europe. In fact much of what we generate on Yahoo, Amazon and Ebay goes to support The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, as well as some other worthy institutions in Europe connected with Anthropology and Archaeology. I acquire some small but interesting collections overseas from time-to-time, and have as well some duplicate items within my own collection which I occasionally decide to part with. Though I have a collection of ancient coins numbering in the tens of thousands, my primary interest is in ancient jewelry. My wife also is an active participant in the "business" of antique and ancient jewelry, and is from Russia. I would be happy to provide you with a certificate/guarantee of authenticity for any item you purchase from me. There is a $2 fee for mailing under separate cover. Whenever I am overseas I have made arrangements for purchases to be shipped out via domestic mail. If I am in the field, you may have to wait for a week or two for a COA to arrive via international air mail. But you can be sure your purchase will arrive properly packaged and promptly - even if I am absent. And when I am in a remote field location with merely a notebook computer, at times I am not able to access my email for a day or two, so be patient, I will always respond to every email. Please see our "ADDITIONAL TERMS OF SALE." Condition: NEW albeit with very mild shelfwear (see detailed condition description below)., Material: Paper, Provenance: Ancient Byzantium Constantinople, Title: Women in Purple, Subtitle: Rulers of Medieval Byzantium

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