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Title: The formation of Byzantine views on Muslims during the 'Dark Century' (ca. 650-ca.750)
Author: Malevitas, Isias
ISNI:       0000 0004 7431 2488
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2015
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Abstract:
Byzantine-Muslim relations have long attracted the interest of scholars, mainly through the study of political-military events and polemic-theological attitudes. Recently, with the growth of interest in the rise of Islam and its place in the Late Antique Mediterranean world and culture, academic discussions have started to pay attention to a variety of issues and broaden their perspectives through inter-disciplinary approaches and ideas. The aim of this study is to discuss Byzantine views about the Muslims and the impact that the rise of Islam had upon the formation of these views in Christian thought (in the Byzantine and Middle Eastern areas), during the Byzantine 'dark century' (beginning of 7th c.-ca. 750). This period, which actually coincides with the rise of Islam, the formation of the Umayyad Caliphate and its fall (750), has rightfully been considered as transitional for both the Byzantine Empire and for the formation of Islam and Islamic policies. Furthermore, shortly after this period, both Islam and the Byzantine attitudes against it became defined and solidified in forms that have long persisted. A characteristic of this era is the paucity of contemporary historiographical sources (because of the recession of classical historiography in Byzantium and not fully understood causes in the Muslim word). Nevertheless, recent scholarship has drawn attention to a number of alternative sources, including a number of texts often preserved in later ones, which have survived from the period under review here. Some of these texts are the main focus of this thesis. We ask how far they enable us to explore the development of Byzantine attitudes towards the Islamic challenge, and the impact of the latter upon them, as reflected in the politics and attitudes of the imperial centre in Constantinople and those of the Melkite Christians of the Middle East (who were attached to the Byzantine Church). We hope thus to throw some light on this 'silent' period which saw the formation of the relationship between the Byzantine and Muslim Empires.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.758476  DOI:
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