Pages in category "Byzantine diplomats"
The following 40 pages are in this category, out of 40 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 40 pages are in this category, out of 40 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Marianos Argyros – Marianos Argyros was a Byzantine aristocrat and member of the Argyros family. A monk, in 944 he was allowed to leave the monastery and enter imperial service. He held a succession of military commands, fighting in southern Italy against local rebels and the Fatimids, in the Balkans against the Magyars. During the ensuing clashes, he died on the next day, 16 August 963. Marianos was the eldest son of the general Leo Argyros, active in the first decades of the 10th century. He had Romanos Argyros, who in 921 married Agathe, a daughter of Emperor Romanos I Lekapenos. The Argyroi therefore were counted among the firmest supporters of the Lekapenos regime. Romanos Lekapenos had risen as regent over the young Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos, whom he married to his daughter Helena. By December 920, his position had become so unassailable that he was crowned senior emperor. However, in 943, the elderly Romanos drafted a will which would leave Constantine VII as the senior emperor following his death. It is in this context that Marianos Argyros is first mentioned in December 944. At the time, he was a confidant of Stephen Lekapenos. However, with the support of the populace, Constantine VII managed to sideline the Lekapenoi, who joined their father in exile. It appears that Marianos had changed sides in time, for he participated in the arrest of the Lekapenoi. His abandonment of the monastic habit earned the nickname "Apambas" or "Apabbas", whose etymology is unclear.Marianos Argyros – Gold solidus of Romanos I with Constantine VII
2. Manuel Boutoumites – Abu'l Qasim was preparing to launch a fleet into the Sea of Marmara to challenge the Byzantine navy. Alexios, determined to prevent this, sent with the fleet while Tatikios would move against his base by land. The two generals forced Abu' l Qasim to withdraw to Nicaea, whence he concluded a truce with Byzantium. Soon after, Doukas and Boutoumites were sent against the rebellions of Karykes at Cyprus. After subduing Karykes's revolt, they headed to Cyprus, where Kyrenia fell quickly. Boutoumites caught up with him at the church of the Holy Cross, where the rebel had sought refuge. Promising to spare his life, he brought him back to Doukas. According to tradition, while in Cyprus, he founded the Kykkos Monastery there. Boutoumites trusted by Alexios; Anna Komnene calls him "Alexios' sole confidant". The great obstacle on the Crusaders' path was Nicaea, the Seljuk capital, which they proceeded to besiege. Boutoumites had been instructed by Alexios to secure the surrender of the city to imperial forces, not to the Crusaders. The Turks had entered negotiations, allowing Boutoumites to enter the city. Two days later, at the news of the approach of a force under Sultan Kilij Arslan I, they forced him to leave. Although by and large the Crusaders accepted the outcome, the event soured relations. In the aftermath of the city's fall, Boutoumites was named as doux of Nicaea.Manuel Boutoumites – Miniature of the Emperor Alexios I Komnenos (r. 1081–1118).
3. Niketas Chalkoutzes – He is the attested member of the Chalkoutzes or Chalkoutses family, whose members are mentioned sporadically until the 13th century. Chalkoutzes was likely the Byzantine governor of the island after that. Savvides, Alexios G. C.. Προσωπογραφικό σημείωμα για τον απελευθερωτή της Κύπρου Νικήτα Χαλκούτζη και για τη χρονολογία ανακατάληψης της μεγαλονήσου. Επετηρίς Κέντρου Μελετών Ιεράς Μονής Κύκκου. Nicosia. 2: 371–378. Wortley, John, ed.. John Skylitzes: A Synopsis of Byzantine History, 811-1057. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-76705-7.Niketas Chalkoutzes – Chalkoutzes and his entourage escape during a battle between the Byzantines and the Arabs. Miniature from the Madrid Skylitzes
4. Leo Choirosphaktes – Choirosphaktes was also a writer, many of whose works and correspondence survive. The date of Choirosphaktes's birth is not clear; George Kolias placed it between 850, while Hans Georg Beck circa 824. Paul Magdalino, however, rejects a date in the 820s, for Choirosphaktes was still alive in 913 and probably died after 920. His family was well established in aristocratic circles. Choirosphaktes continued to be favoured by Leo VI, who awarded him the high dignities of anthypatos, magistros, patrikios by 896. In 895 -- 896, Emperor Leo sent Choirosphaktes to the Bulgarian ruler Symeon to conclude the ongoing war between the two states. His diplomatic correspondence is a valuable source for these events. These Symeon dragged out until the Pechenegs, attacked the Magyars in the rear. After the Magyars were defeated, the Bulgarian ruler issued an ultimatum demanding the release of all Bulgarian prisoners as a precondition of peace. Emperor Leo, pressed at the same time in the East, accepted his demand. The prisoners were released. Soon, after a severe Byzantine defeat at the Battle of Bulgarophygon in summer 896, Choirosphaktes was again dispatched to Symeon. Choirosphaktes again was the Byzantine ambassador sent to negotiate with him. During this period of disgrace, he sent repeated letters to the emperor pleading his case. Following the coup's suppression, Choirosphaktes sought sanctuary in the Hagia Sophia.Leo Choirosphaktes – Basil I (left) and the young Leo VI (right), miniature from the Madrid Skylitzes.
5. Constantine (consul 457) – Flavius Constantinus was a politician of the Eastern Roman Empire, consul and three times praetorian prefect of the East. A bilingual inscription was erected to celebrate the works. After leaving his office in 451, he participated in some sessions of the Council of Chalcedon. In 456 he was appointed prefect for the second time. Constantinus was appointed consul with Rufus as his colleague, then prefect of the East for the third time in 459. He received the title of patricius after 457. In 464/465 he was sent to the Sassanid Persian king Peroz I. He waited at Edessa, then was received at Peroz's court. Jones, Arnold Hugh Martin, John Robert Martindale, John Morris, "Fl. Constantinus 22", Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire, Volume 2, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-20159-4, pp. 317 -- 318.Constantine (consul 457) – Portion of the Walls of Constantinople, damaged by an earthquake in January 447 and restored by Constantinus in sixty days.
6. Hermogenes (magister officiorum) – Hermogenes was probably from Scythia Minor, as he is called "the Scythian" in Byzantine chronicles. In the 510s, he served as an assessor to the general Vitalian, who in 513–515 led a series of revolts against Emperor Anastasius I. By May 529, he had risen to the post of magister officiorum, head of the imperial secretariat. He returned bearing his reply for a one-year truce. In response, Emperor Justinian sent him again as an envoy, along with Rufinus, who had led repeated embassies to the Persian court in the past. Kavadh, however, had postponed meeting them. When the Persian army under Mihran advanced to Ammodius, the Byzantines too exited Dara, arraying their forces in front of the city. The Persian commander refused. Hermogenes shared command during the subsequent Battle of Dara, which ended in a major Byzantine victory. After the battle, Kavadh accepted a new embassy, but without Hermogenes, who returned to Constantinople in early 531. In the meantime, Kavadh had sent Rufinus back to Emperor Justinian with terms acceptable to the latter. When Rufinus returned to the shah bearing Justinian's agreement, the Persian ruler had resolved to renew the war. In spring 531, as news arrived of another Persian invasion, Hermogenes was sent again at the head of reinforcements for Belisarius's army. He joined Belisarius, following the Persians, at Barbalissus. There, Hermogenes resolved a dispute between Belisarius and one of his subordinate commanders, Sunicas.Hermogenes (magister officiorum) – Map of the Byzantine-Persian frontier area.
7. John VII of Constantinople – John VII, surnamed Grammatikos or Grammaticus, i.e. "the Grammarian", Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople from January 21, 837 to March 4, 843, died before 867. He is not to be confused with the much earlier philosopher John Philoponos. John was born to an aristocratic family of Armenian origin. He had Arsaber. Warren Treadgold identifies the latter with the Arsaber who married a sister of the Empress Theodora. John's sister was the mother of the later Patriarch Photios. Beginning his clerical career in c. 811, John was also an painter of icons and a correspondent of Theodore of Stoudios. John was rewarded for his troubles by being appointed abbot of the prestigious Sergios and Bakchos monastery, where recalcitrant Iconodules were being re-educated. On the accession of Theophilos, John was appointed a position that made a likely heir to the patriarchate. In c. The circumstances of John VII's patriarchate are obscure. He was appointed patriarch, in 837, by his student Theophilos and may have been responsible for the slight intensification of the persecution of Iconodules. He was deposed in 843. The deposed patriarch survived into the 860s.John VII of Constantinople
8. John Mystikos – John Mystikos was a Byzantine official, who served as the chief minister of the empire in the early reign of Romanos I Lekapenos. After being suspected of designs on the throne, he was deposed and sent to exile in a monastery. He is last mentioned as leading an embassy to Muhammad ibn Tughj al-Ikhshid in 946. Nothing is known of his origin or early life. The chamberlain Theophanes succeeded him as paradynasteuon. John's career thereafter is partially recorded in twelve letters exchanged with Niketas Magistros, likewise a disgraced high official. Niketas consistently addresses John with the title of "patrikios and mystikos". From these letters it emerges that John eventually re-entered imperial service, abandoning the monastery and re-enrolling in the imperial court as oikonomos. He was sent to unspecified "barbarians", from which he returned some time between 940. John used his restored rank to successfully lobby for Niketas, securing him an annual stipend. On the occasion, al-Mas ` udi describes John as a monk. John met al-Ikhshid at Damascus shortly before the latter's death in July 946. The negotiations were continued by Abu al-Misk Kafur, who returned to Egypt. John accompanied him up to Palestine with al-Adani, where he gave them 30,000 gold dinars for the purpose of ransoming prisoners. The exchange took place in the presence of John and the magistros Kosmas.John Mystikos – Gold solidus of Romanos I with Constantine VII
9. John the Rhaiktor – John the Rhaiktor was a Byzantine official, who served as the chief minister of the empire in the early reign of Romanos I Lekapenos. John is first mentioned in the aftermath of a failed conspiracy against emperor Romanos I Lekapenos and his junior colleague Constantine VII. At the time, he was a presbyter, was the chief councillor to Romanos I. In the aftermath of the conspiracy's revelation of the conspirators, he took the servant into the imperial household. Afterwards unspecified charges were brought against him before Emperor Romanos. Feigning illness, he retired to a monastery he had founded, near Galakrenai. He was succeeded by John Mystikos. Soon as Ivan was in Constantinople, he abandoned his monastic habit and married a Byzantine noblewoman. John and co-emperor Christopher Lekapenos were witnesses at the ceremony. The conspirators were variously blinded, their noses cut, publicly humiliated through the streets of the capital and exiled. Lilie, Ralph-Johannes; Ludwig, Claudia; Zielke, Beate; Pratsch, Thomas, eds.. Prosopographie der mittelbyzantinischen Zeit Online. Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften. Nach Vorarbeiten F. Winkelmanns erstellt. De Gruyter.John the Rhaiktor – Gold solidus of Romanos I with Constantine VII
10. Maximinus (diplomat) – Maximinus was a 5th-century East Roman official, serving as ambassador to Attila the Hun and as a senior minister at Constantinople. Maximinus was lieutenant of Ardaburius in the Roman–Persian war in 422. In 448, Theodosius II sent him to Attila; the Hunnic ambassadors at Constantinople, returned with him to Pannonia. This embassy of Maximinus is described to whom is owed nearly all modern knowledge of Attila's person and private life. He is invariably represented as a virtuous, highly talented man. This article incorporates text from Mythology, a publication now in the public domain.Maximinus (diplomat) – Priscus (left) with the Roman embassy at the court of Attila
11. Theodore Metochites – Theodore Metochites was a Byzantine statesman, author, gentleman philosopher, patron of the arts. From c. 1305 to 1328 he held the position of personal adviser to emperor Andronikos II Palaiologos. Metochites was born as the son of a fervent supporter of the union of the Orthodox and Catholic Churches. He devoted himself to studies of both secular and religious authors. Little more than a year later, he was appointed a Senator. Besides carrying out his political duties, Metochites continued to study and to write. In 1312/1313, he started learning astronomy from Manuel Bryennios; later he himself became the teacher of Nicephorus Gregoras. He was married with Irene. Metochites’ political career culminated in 1321, when he was invested as Grand Logothete. He was then at the summit of his power, also one of the richest men of his age. Metochites’ fortunes were, however, linked with his emperor’s. After a few years of civil war, Andronicus II was overthrown by his own grandson, Andronicus III Palaeologus. Metochites went down with him. He was deprived of his possessions and forced into exile in Didymoteichon. In 1330, he was allowed to return to Constantinople.Theodore Metochites – Theodore Metochites presenting the model of the renovated Chora Church to Christ Pantocrator.
12. Michael of Synnada – Michael of Synnada was a bishop of Synnada from 784. He represented Byzantium to Harun al-Rashid and Charlemagne. He was exiled by Emperor Leo V the Armenian because of his opposition to iconoclasm. Honored by the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches, his day is May 23. Michael was much influenced by Patriarch Tarasios of Constantinople, who sent him on the coast of the Black Sea. An associate of Saint Theophylact of Nicomedia, once during a harvest in a time of drought, they caused rainfall through their prayers. Patriarch Tarasius consecrated Michael Bishop of the city of Synnada. He was present at the Seventh Ecumenical Council at Nicea in 787. At the request of the Emperor, he visited Caliph Harun al-Rashid to conduct peace negotiations. He also carried out diplomatic missions for Byzantium at the court of Charlemagne. He died in 818. He is an Orthodox and Roman Catholic saint. His day is celebrated on May 23. He is invoked from pests. St. Michael is depicted with St. Athanasius in the Icon of the Mother of God “Economissa”.Michael of Synnada – Virgin Mary
13. Peter the Patrician – Peter the Patrician was a senior East Roman or Byzantine official, diplomat, historian. A successful lawyer, he was repeatedly sent as envoy to Ostrogothic Italy in the prelude to the Gothic War of 535 -- 554. Despite his diplomatic skill, he was imprisoned by the Goths in Ravenna for a few years. Upon his release, he was appointed to the post of head of the imperial secretariat, which he held for an unparalleled 26 years. His historical writings provide unique source material on early Byzantine ceremonies and diplomatic issues between Byzantium and the Sassanids. After studying law, he embarked as a lawyer in Constantinople, which brought him to the attention of Empress Theodora. On account of his rhetorical skills, he was employed as an imperial envoy to the Ostrogothic court at Ravenna. At the time, a struggle was developing there between Queen Amalasuntha, regent to the young king Athalaric, her cousin Theodahad. Following the death of Athalaric, Theodahad sent messages to Emperor Justinian hoping for recognition. Peter notified Constantinople, seeking new instructions. Emperor Justinian ordered him not to be harmed. A Byzantine offensive followed soon thereafter, attacking the outlying possessions of the Ostrogothic kingdom: Belisarius took Sicily, while Mundus invaded Dalmatia. In the event, Justinian was delighted to learn of the second one. It was not to be: in Ravenna, the Byzantine envoys found Theodahad in a changed disposition. Buoyed up by a success against Mundus in Dalmatia, he resolved to resist, imprisoned the ambassadors.Peter the Patrician – Emperor Justinian I (r. 527–565) and his entourage, mosaic from the Basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna.
14. Priscus – Priscus of Panium was a 5th-century Roman diplomat and Greek historian and rhetorician. Priscus was born in Panion between 410-420 AD. Priscus ultimately engaged with the Greek defector regarding the qualities of life and justice in both the Byzantine Empire and in barbarian kingdoms. After an interlude in Rome, Priscus traveled in Egypt. He last appeared in the East, circa 456, attached as Emperor Marcian's magister officiorum. He died after 472 AD. Priscus was the author of an eight-volume historical work, entitled the History of Byzantium, probably not the original title name. The History probably covered the period until 474 AD. Priscus's work was very influential in the Byzantine Empire. But this one was said to be supposedly greater than the rest. Made with little thought on making any aspects of the place for defense. Priscus entered the following day bearing gifts to Attila's wife. Her name was Kreka who had three sons. The dinner was at the embassy of Western Romans. That to Priscus, Attila considered his people were more important than the Roman embassy.Priscus – Priscus (left) with the Roman embassy at the court of Attila the Hun, holding his ΙΣΤΟΡΙΑ (History, which the painter has incorrectly spelled ΙΣΤ Ω ΡΙΑ). (Detail from Mór Than 's Feast of Attila.)
15. Theophanes (chamberlain) – Theophanes was a Byzantine palace official and the chief adviser of Emperor Romanos Lekapenos during most of his reign. He led the naval defense of Constantinople against the Rus' invasion of 941. Nothing is known of Theophanes's origin and early life. Unlike Mystikos, Theophanes remained the chief figure of the government for the remainder of Romanos's reign. At that time, the Byzantine Empire had been embroiled in a disastrous war with Bulgarian Tsar Simeon. In 927, his infant son, Peter, ascended the Bulgarian throne under the regency of his uncle George Sursubul. Despite its victories, Bulgaria was furthermore threatened in its northern borders by the Magyars. Consequently, the Bulgarians decided to make peace with Constantinople. Theophanes proved his diplomatic skills again in April 934, when a large Magyar raid descended into Thrace. He arranged terms for their withdrawal and for the release of their captives in exchange for sums of money. The improvised squadron met the Rus' through the use of Greek fire, turned them back. The bulk of the raiders then made landfall in Bithynia, plundering the province. As the army began to arrive from the East, the Rus' found themselves increasingly constrained. Trying to return to their homeland, one night in September they tried to cross over into Thrace. The Rus' fleet was annihilated.Theophanes (chamberlain) – Bronze follis of Emperor Romanos I Lekapenos (r. 920–944).