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Title: Urban and rural landscape in early and middle Byzantine Attica (4th-12th c. AD)
Author: Tzavella, Elissavet
ISNI:       0000 0004 2739 9680
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2013
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The present study synthesiszes archaeological and historical evidence concerning Attica (Greece), the hinterland of Athens, in the Early and Middle Byzantine periods (4th-12th c.). Although the Byzantine monuments of Attica have been thoroughly studied, no coherent picture of how these relate to broader patterns of occupation and land usage has thus far been presented. In the main, the period under discussion is generally interpreted in three ways: Regarding Late Antiquity, research has often focused on the transition from paganism to Christianity, and to the characterisation of Attica as a ‘stronghold of paganism’. During the so-called ‘Dark-Ages’, Attica is most often presented as being ‘desolate’. Regarding the Middle Byzantine period, archaeological research is dominated by architectural and art-historical study of churches. The present study presents Attica within wider trends which took place in the Byzantine Empire, and which caused its transformation in terms of demography, settlement pattern, administration, road networks, economy, defense and ecclesiastical institutions. After a detailed catalogue and interpretation of all available archaeological material, Attica appears less ‘exceptional’ in Late Antiquity, less ‘desolate’ in the ‘Dark-Ages’, while in the Middle Byzantine period, emergence of a strong local elite matches the erection of monuments of high artistic quality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: AHRC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: CC Archaeology ; D051 Ancient History ; D111 Medieval History ; DE The Mediterranean Region. The Greco-Roman World ; DF Greece