School-teachers in the early Byzantine Empire 330-610 A.D.
A Greek or Roman school was a group of students gathering
around one teacher. There were no complex educational
institutions such as schools and universities as we know them.
The prosopographical study undertaken here aims at collecting
all the teachers known by name who taught in Greek in the
Eastern Mediterranean within the first three centuries of the
Byzantine Empire. The resulting three hundred and six teachers
in almost as many years form a poor statistical sample, but it
is all that we have. An analysis of their floruit, geographical
distribution, teaching subjects and the religion of these
teachers is compiled here for the first time, confirming many
of the conclusions drawn previously.
The statistical analysis highlights the sharp drop in the
number of teachers in the Greek world from as early as the late
fifth century A. D. and the decreasing proportion of those
teaching at an advanced level. The changing ratio of Christians
to pagans in the profession is substantiated and the different
rates of progress in this process of Christianizing are analysed
in relation to the particular type of subject taught, whether
grammar, rhetoric or philosophy. There is sufficient
homogeneity in the period and area documented here to make the
changes occurring within it material for a study of the decline
of education within a culturally developed civilization.