Category:Themes of the Byzantine Empire
Pages in category "Themes of the Byzantine Empire"
The following 48 pages are in this category, out of 48 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 48 pages are in this category, out of 48 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Theme (Byzantine district) – The themes or themata were the main administrative divisions of the middle Byzantine Empire. The theme system reached its apogee in the 9th and 10th centuries, as older themes were split up and the conquest of territory resulted in the creation of new ones. The original theme system underwent significant changes in the 11th and 12th centuries, during the late 6th and early 7th centuries, the Eastern Roman Empire was under frequent attack from all sides. The Sassanid Empire was pressing from the east on Syria, Egypt, slavs and Avars raided Thrace, Macedonia, Illyricum and Greece and settled in the Balkans. The Lombards occupied northern Italy, largely unopposed and these developments overturned the strict division of civil and military offices, which had been one of the cornerstones of the reforms of Diocletian. This trend had already featured in some of the reforms of Justinian I in the 530s. However, in most of the Empire, the old system continued to function until the 640s, the rapid Muslim conquest of Syria and Egypt and consequent Byzantine losses in manpower and territory meant that the Empire found itself struggling for survival. In order to respond to this crisis, the Empire was drastically reorganized. The origin and early nature of the themes has been disputed amongst scholars. The very name thema is of uncertain etymology, but most scholars follow Constantine Porphyrogennetos, the date of their creation is also uncertain. For most of the 20th century, the establishment of the themes was attributed to the Emperor Heraclius, according to Ostrogorsky, this shows that the process of establishing troops in specific areas of Asia Minor has already begun at this time. This view has been objected to by other historians however, and more recent scholarship dates their creation later, to the period from the 640s to the 660s, tied to the question of chronology is also the issue of a corresponding social and military transformation. The traditional view, championed by Ostrogorsky, holds that the establishment of the themes also meant the creation of a new type of army. In his view, instead of the old force, heavily reliant on foreign mercenaries, territorially, each of the new themes encompassed several of the older provinces, and with a few exceptions, seems to have followed the old provincial boundaries. The first four themes were those of the Armeniacs, Anatolics and Thracesians, the Armeniac Theme, first mentioned in 667, was the successor of the Army of Armenia. It occupied the old areas of the Pontus, Armenia Minor and northern Cappadocia, the Anatolic Theme, first mentioned in 669, was the successor of the Army of the East. It covered southern central Asia Minor, and its capital was Amorium, together, these two themes formed the first tier of defence of Byzantine Anatolia, bordering Muslim Armenia and Syria respectively. The Thracesian Theme, first mentioned clearly as late as c,740, was the successor of the Army of Thrace, and covered the central western coast of Asia Minor, with its capital most likely at ChonaeTheme (Byzantine district) – Map showing the extent of the Byzantine Empire in c. 600 and c. 900, including the themes for the latter date
2. Aegean Sea (theme) – The Theme of the Aegean Sea was a Byzantine province in the northern Aegean Sea, established in the mid-9th century. As one of the Byzantine Empires three dedicated naval themes, it served chiefly to provide ships and troops for the Byzantine navy, but also served as a civil administrative circumscription. The theme has its origins in the late antique province of the Islands. The term Aigaion Pelagos appears for the first time as an administrative circumscription in the early 8th century, militarily, the Aegean islands came under control of the Karabisianoi corps and later of the Cibyrrhaeot Theme during the 7th and 8th centuries. The theme of the Aegean Sea was a theme, subdivided into tourmai and banda and with a full complement of military, civil. A similar procedure existed in the theme of Samos as well and this view is strengthened by the fact that the Opsicians, and especially the Slavs living in the Opsician Theme, are attested serving as marines in the 10th century. According to Emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos, in the early 10th century the theme included Lesbos, Lemnos, Imbros and Tenedos, Chios, the Sporades, in 911, the forces of the naval theme of the Aegean are recorded as being 2,610 oarsmen and 400 marines. The province survived until the late 10th/early 11th century, when it became progressively split up into smaller commands, by the late 11th century, what remained of the old thematic fleet was subsumed into the unified imperial navy at Constantinople, under the command of the megas doux. The theme ceased to exist after the dissolution of the Byzantine Empire by the Fourth Crusade in 1204Aegean Sea (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece c. 900 AD, with the themes and major settlements.
3. Anatolic Theme – The Anatolic Theme, more properly known as the Theme of the Anatolics was a Byzantine theme in central Asia Minor. In its classical form during the 8th and 9th centuries, the theme stretched over the ancient regions of Lycaonia, Pisidia, Isauria, as well as most of Phrygia and parts of Galatia Salutaris. Initially, the Anatolic Theme included the western and southern shores of Asia Minor as well, emperor Leo VI the Wise later ceded the region west of Lake Tuz to Cappadocia. The themes capital was Amorium, until the sack of the city by the Abbasids in 838, after that, it was probably transferred to the nearby fortress of Polybotos. According to the 10th-century Arab geographers Qudama ibn Jafar and Ibn al-Faqih, the Anatolic Theme, the largest of the provinces of the Romans, fielded 15,000 men, and contained 34 fortresses. It and its governor, or stratēgos, first attested in 690. As such, the stratēgos of the Anatolics was one of the highest in the Empire, the holders of the post received an annual salary of 40 pounds of gold, and are attested as holding the senior court ranks of patrikios, anthypatos, and prōtospatharios. In addition, they were the ones to be appointed to the exceptional post of monostrategos. The exact date of the establishment is unknown. The Anatolic Theme was settled and took its name from the army of the East, the theme is attested for the first time in 669, while the army itself is mentioned, as the exercitus Orientalis, as late as an iussio of Justinian II in 687. The thematic capital, Amorium, was also a frequent target of the Arabs and it was attacked already in 644, captured in 646, and briefly occupied in 669. The Arabs reached it again in 708 and besieged it without success in 716 and this in turn provoked the reaction of the Abbasid Caliphate, which in the quarter-century after 780 launched repeated invasions of Byzantine Asia Minor. Thus the Anatolics suffered a defeat at Kopidnadon in 788. The cities of eastern Cappadocia, however, which bordered the Caliphate, were practically destroyed, the 10th century was largely peaceful, with the exception of yet another sack of Amorium in 931 and a raid that reached Iconium in 963. The first Turkish attack on the theme is recorded in 1069, most of the province was overrun by the Turks after the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, with Iconium becoming the seat of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum in the 12th century. The last appearance of the Anatolic Theme in the sources is in 1077. The Byzantines managed to some of the western and northern portions of the theme in the subsequent decades under the Komnenian emperors. In the 10th century, however, the theme appears on the sidelines of the rebellions of the period, the next and last rebellion by a stratēgos of the Anatolics was that of Nikephoros Xiphias in 1022, against Basil IIAnatolic Theme – Gold solidus of Leo III the Isaurian and his son, Constantine V
4. Armeniac Theme – The Armeniac Theme, more properly the Theme of the Armeniacs was a Byzantine theme located in northeastern Asia Minor. The Armeniac Theme was one of the four themes, established sometime in the mid-7th century out of the territory of Lesser Armenia. It is next mentioned on a seal of 717/718, thus, the army of the magister militum per Armeniae was withdrawn and settled in the areas of Pontus, Paphlagonia and Cappadocia, giving its name to the region. In the 9th century, it fielded some 9,000 men, the theme remained in Byzantine hands until the late 11th century. Shortly after, the region was overrun by the Seljuk Turks, the Komnenian emperors managed to recover the coastal regions for the Empire, but the Armeniac theme was not restoredArmeniac Theme – The Byzantine themes of Asia Minor in circa 780, after the split of the Opsikion.
5. Bucellarian Theme – The Bucellarian Theme, more properly known as the Theme of the Bucellarians was a Byzantine theme in northern Asia Minor. It was created around the middle of the 8th century, comprising most of the ancient region of Paphlagonia, the theme was established sometime after 743 and before 767 by the Emperor Constantine V, following the suppression of the revolt of Artabasdos, the Count of the Opsikion. The new theme, along with that of the Optimatoi was split off from the Opsikion as formed part of the Emperors policy to reduce the latters power. The name of the theme derives from the late Roman Bucellarii, elite troops of Gothic or Roman origin. By the early 7th century, they formed a division in the Opsikion field force. The strategos of the Bucellarians is attested for the first time in 767 and his headquarters were at Ancyra, the former capital of Opsikion, and he belonged to the second tier of strategoi with an annual salary of 30 pounds of gold. According to Arab geographers, he commanded some 8,000 troops, the court ranks of the Bucellarian strategoi ranged from the mid-level spatharios to the higher protospatharios, with a single occurrence of the more exalted patrikios in the 10th century. Claudiopolis is the only attested base of one of the themes tourmai, despite it being originally a cavalry theme, the Bucellarians, as well as the later Paphlagonian theme, also included a small fleet, active in the Black Sea. The katepano of the Bucellarians and the Paphlagonians, whose seal is attested in the 10th century, was the commander of this naval contingent, however, evidence points to the fact that the 10th-century fleet was composed of merchantmen and transport ships, not warships. In the 9th century, however, probably c,820, the northeastern half of the theme was detached and formed, perhaps with some territory from the Armeniac theme, the new theme of Paphlagonia. Its extent was further reduced under Emperor Leo VI the Wise, in the 9th century, it comprised two towns and thirteen fortresses, while five towns are recorded in the 10th century. The theme survived until it was overrun by the Seljuk Turks following the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, the name Boukellariōn, however, survived as a geographical designation in Byzantine sources up until 1263. Encyclopedia of the Hellenic World, Asia Minor, new York and Oxford, Oxford University Press. The Decline of the Opsikian Domesticates and the Rise of the Domesticate of the Scholae, treadgold, Warren T. Byzantium and Its Army, 284–1081Bucellarian Theme – The Byzantine themes of Asia Minor in c. 780, after the split of the Opsikion.
6. Byzantine Crete – Under Roman rule, Crete had formed a joint province with Cyrenaica, that of Creta et Cyrenaica. Few contemporary sources mention Crete during the period from the 4th century to the Muslim conquest in the 820s, during this time, the island was very much a quiet provincial backwater in the periphery of the Greco-Roman world. Its bishops are even absent from the First Council of Nicaea in 325, in the 6th-century Synecdemus, Crete is marked as being governed by a consularis, with capital at Gortyn, and as many as 22 cities. The population in this period is estimated as high as 250,000 and this peace was broken in the 7th century. Thereafter the island remained relatively safe, under the rule of an appointed by Constantinople. 732, the emperor Leo III the Isaurian transferred the island from the jurisdiction of the Pope to that of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, a strategos of Crete is attested in 767, and a seal of a tourmarches of Crete is known. This has led to suggestions that the island was constituted as a theme in the 8th century, most scholars however do not consider the evidence conclusive enough and think it unlikely that the island was a theme at the time. Byzantine rule lasted until the late 820s, when a group of exiles from Muslim Spain landed on the island. The Byzantines launched repeated expeditions to drive back, and seem to have appointed a strategos to administer what parts of the island they still controlled. The fall of Crete to the Arabs posed a major headache for Byzantium, as it opened the coasts, however Theoktistos had to abandon the campaign, and the troops left behind were quickly defeated by the Saracens. After reconquest, the island was organized as a regular theme, extensive efforts at conversion of the populace were undertaken, led by John Xenos and Nikon the Metanoeite. A regiment of 1,000 men was raised as the garrison, under a separate taxiarches. Under Alexios I Komnenos, the island was ruled by a doux or katepano, by the early 12th century, it came, along with southern Greece under the overall control of the megas doux, the commander-in-chief of the Byzantine navy. Aside from the revolt of its governor, Karykes, in 1092/1093, during the Crusade, Crete appears to have been granted to Boniface of Montferrat as a pronoia by the emperor Alexios IV Angelos. Boniface however, unable to extend his control to the island, in the event, the island was seized by the Venetians rivals, Genoa, and it took Venice until 1212 to secure her control over the island and establish it as a Venetian colony. Ancient episcopal sees of the late Roman province of Crete listed in the Annuario Pontificio as titular sees, Detorakis, Theocharis E. Ιστορία της Κρήτης, Athens Hetherington, Paul, 825–949, Graeco-Arabica, 347–362 Nesbitt, John W. Oikonomides, Nicolas, eds. A History of the Byzantine State and Society, Stanford, CA, Stanford University Press, ISBN 0-8047-2630-2Byzantine Crete – Diocese of Macedonia, c. 400
7. Cappadocia (theme) – The Theme of Cappadocia was a Byzantine theme encompassing the southern portion of the namesake region from the early 9th to the late 11th centuries. The theme comprised most of the late antique Roman province of Cappadocia Secunda, initially, the later theme was a tourma of the Anatolic Theme. To counter the Arab threat, it was detached as a frontier march. It is first attested as such in 830, according to the Muslim geographers Ibn Khordadbeh and Ibn al-Faqih, the province was heavily fortified with over twenty towns and fortresses, and had a garrison of 4,000 men in the 9th century. The theme was also the site of no less than three imperial aplekta, large camps that served as points for the thematic armies during campaigns, Koloneia, Caesarea. The Arab raids remained frequent in the 9th century, and an Arab army occupied Loulon, one of the key fortresses guarding the exit of the Cilician Gates. In 897, an Arab raid even sacked the thematic capital, under Emperor Leo VI the Wise, some of its eastern territory, the bandon of Nyssa, in which Caesarea lay, as well as the tourma of Kase were given to the Charsianon theme. The fall of Melitene in 934 and the conquests of John Kourkouas removed the threat to the theme. In the 10th century, the region was settled by Armenians. The magnates power was broken through the confiscation of their estates under Emperor Basil II, extensive Armenian settlement occurred in the first half of the 11th century, and the first Seljuk raids in the area began c.1050 and intensified over the next two decades. After the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, most of Cappadocia was lost to the Seljuks, a toparches of Cappadocia and Choma, however, appears as late as 1081 either implying continued Byzantine control in parts of western Cappadocia or simply the survival of the title. Rock churches of Cappadocia information and photos, weather of CappadociaCappadocia (theme) – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire c. 842.
8. Cephallenia (theme) – During the Roman Empire, the Ionian Islands were variously part of the provinces of Achaea and Epirus vetus. Except for Cythera, these formed the theme of Cephallenia. It is unknown when exactly the theme of Cephallenia was established and this is, however, clearly an error, for several instances of generals of Cephallenia are known through sources before that date. Thus, the Taktikon Uspensky of 842/843 clearly mentions a strategos of Cephallenia, a number of seals further push the establishment of the circumscription of Cephallenia, at least as a strategis if not as a theme, back to the middle or late 8th century. Contrary to Porphyrogennetoss account, Longobardia was probably initially constituted as a tourma of Cephallenia after the Byzantine recapture of Bari in 876, nevertheless, in several cases, the commands of Cephallenia and Longobardia were thereafter held by the same person. The themes strategos was based mostly at Cephallenia, but is also attested elsewhere. Cephallenia was important chiefly in a context, and had its own fleet, including a number of Mardaites as marines and rowers. Other tourmarchai and subordinate commanders headed the army garrison. The historian Warren Treadgold conjecturally estimates the military forces at some 2,000 men in the 9th century. The theme was also used as a place of exile for political prisoners. The Theme of Cephallenia is frequently mentioned in military operations in the 9th–11th centuries, in 809, the strategos Paul defeated a Venetian fleet off Dalmatia. In 880, the admiral Nasar heavily defeated an Arab pirate fleet that was plundering the themes islands, Mardaites from Cephallenia are then recorded in the failed expedition of 949 against the Emirate of Crete. The last mention of a strategos of Cephallenia comes in 1011, following the collapse of Byzantine control in southern Italy in the mid-11th century, the themes importance declined, and it was headed by civilian governors, styled krites. From the late 11th century, the Ionian Islands became a battleground in the Byzantine–Norman Wars, the island of Corfu was held by the Normans in 1081–1085 and 1147–1149, while the Venetians unsuccessfully besieged it in 1122–1123. The island of Cephalonia was also besieged in 1085, but was plundered in 1099 by the Pisans. Finally, Corfu and the rest of the theme except for Leucas were captured by the Normans under William II of Sicily in 1185Cephallenia (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece ca. 900 AD, with the themes and major settlements.
9. Chaldia – Chaldia was a historical region located in mountainous interior of the eastern Black Sea, northeast Anatolia. Its name was derived from a people called the Chaldoi that inhabited the region in Antiquity, Chaldia was used throughout the Byzantine period and was established as a formal theme, known as the Theme of Chaldia, by 840. During the late Middle Ages, it formed the core of the Empire of Trebizond until its fall to the Ottomans in 1461. Anthony Bryer traces the origin of its not to Chaldea, as Constantine VII had done. Bryer notes at the time of his writing that a number of villages in the Of district were known as Halt. Its main cities were the two ancient Greek colonies, Kerasus and Trapezus, situated in the coastal lowlands, the mines of the region gave the name Argyropolis to the principal settlement. Byzantine sources provide evidence that the people of Chaldia and Tzanicha were descended from the inhabitants of the historical area of Chaldia. Strabo identifies them with the ancient people of Chalybia and describes them as rough, the first local inhabitants, the Chalybes, were counted among the earliest ironsmith nations by Classical writers. Indeed, the Greek name for steel is chalybas, possibly deriving from them, the first Greek colony was that of Trapezus, founded by Greek traders from Miletus, traditionally dated to 756 BC. Greek colonization was restricted to the coast, and in later ages Roman control remained likewise only nominal over the tribes of the interior, the coastal regions, however, belonged to the Roman province of Pontus Polemoniacus. Only during the reign of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I were the tribes, the Sannoi or Tzannoi, subdued, Christianized. Justinian included the region in the newly constituted province of Armenia I Magna with Trapezus as its capital. By 840, and perhaps as early as 824, it was constituted as a theme in its own right, in the early 10th century, the themes southern portion, the district of Keltzene, was detached and added to the newly established theme of Mesopotamia. Until the eastern gains in the latter 10th century, Chaldia remained the frontier of the Byzantine Empire. During the periods 1091/1095–1098 and 1126–1140, the theme was practically autonomous from the Byzantine government, following the dissolution of the Byzantine Empire by the Fourth Crusade in 1204, the region became part of the new Empire of Trebizond. Indeed, by the 14th century, the Empire was reduced practically to the territory of the old theme, even thereafter, isolated fortresses in the interior continued to resist. Only in 1479 was the region subdued, when the castle of Golacha, significant numbers of Pontic Greeks remained in the region throughout the Ottoman period, until the 1923 population exchange between Greece and TurkeyChaldia – Map of the administrative structure of the Byzantine Empire in 842. Chaldia's strategic location in the north-easternmost corner of the Empire is evident.
10. Charsianon – Charsianon was the name of a Byzantine fortress and the corresponding theme in the region of Cappadocia in central Anatolia. It center was first in Charsianon, later in Caesarea, the fortress of Charsianon is first mentioned in 638, during the first wave of the Muslim conquests, and was allegedly named after a general of Justinian I named Charsios. The Arabs first seized it in 730, and it remained a hotly contested stronghold during the century of Byzantine–Arab warfare. In the early 9th century, the became the center of a kleisoura. Sometime between 863 and 873, it was raised to the status of a theme, augmented by territory from the neighboring Bucellarian, Armeniac. It ranked in the tier of themes, with its governing strategos receiving an annual salary of 20 pounds of gold and commanding, according to Arab sources,4,000 men. In the 10th century, the theme of Charsianon became a stronghold of the landed military aristocracy. After 1045, a number of Armenians, including the former king Gagik II, were settled there. The theme was lost to the Seljuk Turks following the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, Gagik II is attested as the last doux of Charsianon in 1072–1073Charsianon – Map of the Byzantine themes of Asia Minor in circa 950.
11. Cherson (theme) – The Theme of Cherson, originally and formally called the Klimata was a Byzantine theme located in the southern Crimea, headquartered at Cherson. The theme was established in the early 830s and was an important centre of Black Sea commerce. The region had been under Roman and later Byzantine imperial control until the early 8th century, Byzantine authority was re-established by Emperor Theophilos, who displayed interest in the northern littoral of the Black Sea and especially his relations with the Khazars. Traditional scholarship dates the establishment of Cherson as the seat of a theme in ca. The new province was at first called ta Klimata, the regions/districts, the province played an important role in Byzantine relations with the Khazars and later, after the Khazar Khaganates collapse, with the Pechenegs and the Rus. Its weakness is underlined by the stipulation, in the Byzantine treaties with the Rus of 945 and 971, Cherson prospered greatly during the 9th–11th centuries as a centre of Black Sea commerce, despite the citys destruction by Vladimir of Kiev in 988/9. The city recovered quickly, the fortifications were restored and extended to the harbour in the early 11th century. The region however was lost again in the late 11th century to the Cumans, almost nothing is known of Cherson in the 12th century, pointing to a rather tranquil period. Cherson also retained the right to issue its own coins, having resumed minting under Emperor Michael III, in the late 11th century, the theme was governed by a katepanoCherson (theme) – Map of the administrative structure of the Byzantine Empire in 1025. Cherson is located in the southern Crimea.
12. Cibyrrhaeot Theme – The Cibyrrhaeot Theme, more properly the Theme of the Cibyrrhaeots, was a Byzantine theme encompassing the southern coast of Asia Minor from the early 8th to the late 12th centuries. As the Byzantine Empires first and most important naval theme, it served chiefly to provide ships and troops for the Byzantine navy, the Cibyrrhaeots derive their name from the city of Cibyrrha. At the time, the Cibyrrhaeots were subordinate to the naval corps of the Karabisianoi. After the Karabisianoi were disbanded, the Cibyrrhaeots were constituted as a regular theme, until the 9th century, when the themes of the Aegean Sea and Samos were elevated from droungarios-level commands, the Cibyrrhaeot Theme was the only dedicated naval theme of the Empire. The land, which was known for its fertility, suffered from the frequent and devastating Arab raids, the seat of the strategos was most probably Attaleia. Like its other counterparts, the Cibyrrhaeot Theme was divided into droungoi and tourmai, among the most important subordinates of the strategos were the imperial ek prosopou at Syllaion, the droungarioi of Attaleia and Kos and the katepano who commanded the themes Mardaites. These were the descendants of several thousand people transplanted from the area of Lebanon and settled there by Emperor Justinian II in the 680s to provide crews, most of its territory was lost to the Seljuk Turks after 1071, but partly recovered under Alexios I Komnenos. The rump theme was finally abolished by Manuel I Komnenos, and the remaining territory in Caria subordinated to the theme Mylasa and MelanoudionCibyrrhaeot Theme – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire circa 842. The Cibyrrhaeots encompassed the southern shore of Asia Minor.
13. Derzene – Tercan is a town and district of Erzincan Province in the Eastern Anatolia region of Turkey. The district covers an area of 1,592 km2 and its population is 20,072 of which 6,646 live in the town of Tercan. The 17th century Ottoman traveller Evliya Celebi visited the place in 1647 and he wrote about the Saltukid complex and described the town as a Muslim village containing two hundred houses. Mama Hatun complex, tomb, caravanserai, mosque and hammam Kötür bridge Pekeriç fortress Abrenk church Kefrenci temple Saltukids Melike Mama HatunDerzene – The Saltukid caravanserai built in the 12th century.
14. Drouboubiteia – The Drougoubitai, also Drogobitai or Dragobitai, variously anglicized as Drugubites, Drogubites, Druguvites, Draguvites etc. were a South Slavic group who settled in the Balkans in the 7th century. Two distinct branches are mentioned in the sources, one living in medieval Macedonia to the north and east of Thessalonica and around Veroia, while the other lived in Thrace, according to the Miracles, they were led by kings, and were tributary allies to the Byzantines. The Miracles also record their participation in two attacks by Sclaveni coalitions on Thessalonica, in 617/618 and 677. By 879, a bishopric of Drougoubiteia, suffragan to the Metropolis of Thessalonica, had been established, Nicolas Oikonomides has suggested that at about the same time, the tribe was placed under a Byzantine military governor with the title of strategos. In the late 10th and 11th centuries, Drougoubiteia is attested as being united with the themes of Thessalonica, list of Medieval Slavic tribes Curta, Florin. The Making of the Slavs, History and Archaeology of the Lower Danube Region, kazhdan, Alexander, ed. Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium. Nesbitt, John W. Oikonomides, Nicolas, eds, catalogue of Byzantine Seals at Dumbarton Oaks and in the Fogg Museum of Art, Volume 1, Italy, North of the Balkans, North of the Black Sea. Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, les listes de préséance byzantines des IXe et Xe sièclesDrouboubiteia – 11th-century Byzantine seal of an anonymous " krites (civil governor) of the Drougoubitai"
15. Dyrrhachium (theme) – The Theme of Dyrrhachium or Dyrrhachion was a Byzantine military-civilian province located in modern Albania, covering the Adriatic coast of the country. It was established in the early 9th century and named after its capital, the exact date of the themes establishment is unclear, a strategos of Dyrrhachium is attested in the Taktikon Uspensky of c. 842, but several seals of strategoi dating from the previous decades survive, during the Byzantine–Bulgarian wars of the late 10th and early 11th centuries, the city seems to have been autonomous or at times under Bulgarian suzerainty. From the mid-11th century on, its held the title of doux or katepano. In 1040–1041, the troops of the theme, under their leader Tihomir, during the late 11th and the 12th centuries, the city of Dyrrhachium and its province were of great importance to the Byzantine Empire. The city was the key of Albania and the point of entry for trade but also for invaders from Italy. Thus the doux of Dyrrhachium became the senior-most Byzantine authority throughout the western Balkan provinces, two successive governors, Nikephoros Bryennios the Elder and Nikephoros Basilakes, used this post as a launchpad for their imperial ambitions in the late 1070s. The region also played a role in the Byzantine–Norman Wars. After its recovery, Emperor Alexios I Komnenos entrusted the command of the theme to some of his closest relativesDyrrhachium (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece ca. 900 AD, with the themes and major settlements.
16. Hellas (theme) – The Theme of Hellas was a Byzantine military-civilian province located in southern Greece. The theme encompassed parts of Central Greece, Thessaly and, until c and it was established in the late 7th century, and survived until the late 11th/12th century. Hellas was already in use in the 6th century to designate southern Greece in an administrative context, during the late 6th and early 7th centuries, the final collapse of the Danube frontier allowed large-scale Slavic invasions and settlements to occur all over the Balkan peninsula. From 578, Slavic raids reached Thessaly and southern Greece, aided by the Byzantine Empires preoccupation with the long and bloody wars with Sassanid Persia in the east, and with the Avar Khaganate in the north, the Slavs raided and settled almost at will. Some of the native Greek population fled to the cities, to off-shore islands. The creation of the theme of Hellas is dated to sometime between 687 and 695, during the first reign of Emperor Justinian II, probably as a result of his anti-Slavic campaign of 688/689. It is unclear whether Athens or Thebes was the original capital, most likely Thebes. In the second half of the 10th century, however, the seat was transferred to Larissa. Given its lack of depth into the hinterland, the theme was originally probably oriented mostly towards the sea, thus Justinian II settled several thousand Mardaites in Hellas, who provided garrisons and crews for local naval squadrons. The number of troops on the other hand remained rather low throughout the themes existence, numbering perhaps 2,000. The fleet of Hellas played a prominent role during the anti-iconoclast revolt of 726/7, during the course of the 8th century, however, imperial authority was gradually extended to the interior. The local Slavic inhabitants were Christianized and subjected to Byzantine authority and this process was interrupted but not halted by another wave of Slavic settlement in ca. The anti-Slavic expedition of the minister Staurakios in 783 restored and extended imperial control again, especially in the Peloponnese. During the 9th and early 10th centuries, Hellas suffered from Saracen raids, especially after the conquest of Crete by the Arabs in the 820s and the establishment of the Emirate of Crete. Among the major events, in the 880s the Arab emir of Tarsus attacked Euripos but was defeated. Ten ships from Hellas also participated in the attempt to recover Crete under Himerios in 911/2. In 918 and again in 923, the area was subjected to Bulgarian raids under Tsar Simeon that reached even into the Peloponnese and may have destroyed Thebes. Thessaly appears to have detached from Hellas and joined to the theme of Thessalonica from the early 11th century—the Spercheios valley remained under Hellas—until sometime in the 12th centuryHellas (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece c. 900, with the themes and major settlements.
17. Iberia (theme) – The theme of Iberia was an administrative and military unit – theme – within the Byzantine Empire carved by the Byzantine Emperors out of several Georgian land in the 11th century. The theme ceased to exist in 1074 as a result of the Seljuk invasions, the theme was created by the emperor Basil II from the lands inherited from the Georgian prince David III of Tao. However, David’s rebuff of Basil in Bardas Phocas’ revolt of 987 evoked Constantinople’s distrust of the Caucasian rulers, after the failure of the revolt, David was forced to make Basil II the legatee of his extensive possessions. Basil gathered his inheritance upon David’s death in 1000, forcing the successor Georgian Bagratid ruler Bagrat III to recognize the new rearrangement, bagrat’s son, George I, however, inherited a longstanding claim to David’s succession. While Basil was preoccupied with his Bulgarian campaigns, George gained momentum to invade Tao, defeated in the ensuing Byzantine-Georgian wars, George had to relinquish further lands – Kola, Artaan and Javakheti – to the Byzantine crown in 1022. These provinces were organized by Basil II into the theme of Iberia with the capital at Theodosiopolis, henceforth, the theme of Iberia was administered jointly with Ducate of Chaldia. The exact chronology of the theme of Iberia and of its governors is not completely clear, unfortunately, the few Greek seals from the theme or from the ambiguous Interior Iberia can seldom be dated precisely. It is also impossible to identify any commander in Iberia before the appointment, in 1025/6, after 1045 Iberia also included the former Kingdom of Ani. Since 1071 Gregory Pakourianos was a governor of the Theme of Iberia, the Iberian governor was aided by tax officials, judges, and by co administrators who shared in the exercise of the military and civil duties. Among these officials were the domesticos of the East, the administrators of the districts of which the theme was composed, apart from the regular Byzantine garrisons, an indigenous army of peasant soldiers guarded the area and received in turn an allotment of tax-free government land. This changed, however, when Constantine IX dismantled the army of the theme of Iberia, perhaps 5,000 men, Constantine dispatched Nikolaos Serblias to conduct an inventory and to exact taxes that had never been demanded previously. During this expedition, tens of thousands of Christians are said to have been massacred, in 1051/52, Eustathius Boilas, a Byzantine magnate who moved from Cappadocia to the theme of Iberia, found the land foul and unmanageable. Inhabited by snakes, scorpions, and wild beasts, about 1053 Constantine IX disbanded what the historian John Skylitzes calls the Iberian Army, which consisted of 50,000 men and it was turned as a contemporary Drungary of the Watch. The region of the demobilized Iberian Army evidently included everything north of the ducates of Antioch and Edessa, the other themes were probably called Iberian because after the conquest of Iberia in 1000 the general command over them was transferred from the Duke of Mesopotamia to the Duke of Iberia. In the aftermath of the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, south-eastern parts theme was annexed by Seljuks. Still, it may have lasted as late as 1074 when Gregory Pakourianos and this did not help, however, to stem the Turkish advance and the area became a battleground of the Georgian-Seljuk wars. Byzantine–Georgian wars Byzantine–Seljuq Wars Toumanoff, Cyril, studies in Christian Caucasian History, Georgetown University Press, Washington,1967. Some Aspects of the Military-Administrative Districts and Byzantine Administration in Armenia During the 11th Century, REArm 20, 1986-87, kalistrat, Salia, History of the Georgian Nation, Katharine Vivian transIberia (theme) – Emperor Basil II, founder of the Theme of Iberia.
18. Koloneia (theme) – The Theme of Koloneia was a small military-civilian province of the Byzantine Empire located in northern Cappadocia and the southern Pontus, in modern Turkey. It was founded sometime in the century and survived until it was conquered by the Seljuk Turks soon after the Battle of Manzikert in 1071. Originally part of the Armeniac Theme, the theme was formed around the city of Koloneia on the river Lykos, koloneias remote location preserved it from the worst of the Arab raids, except for a major raid by Sayf al-Dawla in 939/940. In 1057, the regiment, under Katakalon Kekaumenos, supported the uprising of Isaac I Komnenos. In 1069, the theme was occupied by the rebel Norman mercenary Robert Crispin, the region fell to the Seljuk Turks soon after the Battle of Manzikert in 1071. It also comprised sixteen unnamed fortresses, porphyrogennetos also records that his father, Leo VI the Wise, separated the tourma of Kamacha from Koloneia to form the new theme of MesopotamiaKoloneia (theme) – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire circa 950.
19. Longobardia – Longobardia (Greek, Λογγοβαρδία, also variously Λογγιβαρδία, Longibardia and Λαγουβαρδία, Lagoubardia, was a Byzantine term for the territories controlled by the Lombards in Italy. In the 9th-10th centuries, it was also the name of a Byzantine military-civilian province known as the Theme of Longobardia located in southeastern Italy. In its strictest and most technical sense, the referred to the province which encompassed the modern Italian region of Apulia and parts of Basilicata. Its exact origin and evolution are not entirely clear, in this process, Otranto was taken from the Saracens in 873, and in 876 the Byzantines took over Bari, which had been captured from its Saracen rulers in 871 by Louis II of Italy. It was probably at this juncture that the foundations of the theme were laid. Even Benevento, the centre of Lombard power in southern Italy, was captured in 891, a dedicated strategos solely for Longobardia is only attested from 911 on. In 938 and 956, it also united with the thema of Calabria. 965, the two themata were permanently united into the new Catepanate of Italy, with the seat again at Bari. New York and Oxford, Oxford University Press, before the Normans, Southern Italy in the Ninth and Tenth CenturiesLongobardia – Map of Byzantine themes in Italy (yellow) c. 1000.
20. Lucania (theme) – Lucania was a Byzantine province in southern Italy that was probably established c. 968, under Emperor Nikephoros II Phokas, tursi was chosen as the themes capital and also as the seat of a new metropolitan bishopric to encompass the province. The theme of Lucania was probably under the authority of the Catepan of Italy at Bari. The province corresponds roughly to the modern Italian region of BasilicataLucania (theme) – Map of Byzantine themes in Italy (yellow) c. 1000.
21. Lykandos – Lykandos or Lycandus was the name of a Byzantine fortress and military-civilian province, known as the Theme of Lykandos, in the 10th–11th centuries. The fortress of Lykandos was located in the area of modern Elbistan in southeastern Turkey, in 903, the Armenian Mleh settled there, establishing a quasi-autonomous lordship. In 905, however, Melias was expelled from the Byzantine Empire in the aftermath of the rebellion of Andronikos Doukas against the Emperor Leo VI the Wise. Recalled in 908, his lordship was formally sanctioned by Leo through his elevation to the status of kleisourarches of Lykandos, Melias was tasked with refortifying the castle, which lay in ruins, and with settling and garrisoning the district, which lay uninhabited. Arab sources make clear that the new and expanding province posed a direct threat, a fierce Arab assault was launched against Lykandos in 909 but it failed, achieving only to reclaim some outlying positions, while in 915, Meliass troops ravaged Arab territory as far as Germanikeia. The importance of Lykandos and the successes of its commander were duly recognized, in 917, however, the troops of Lykandos participated in the disastrous campaign against Bulgaria that ended in the Battle of Acheloos. Administratively, it was run together with the neighbouring themata of Melitene. It does not appear to have constituted a bishopricLykandos – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire c. 950.
22. Macedonia (theme) – The Theme of Macedonia was a military-civilian province of the Byzantine Empire established between the late 8th century and the early 9th century. Byzantine Macedonia also incorporated the region of Thrace, the Slavs organized themselves into Sklaviniai, that continued to assault the Byzantine Empire, either independently, or aided by Bulgars or Avars during the 7th century. In the late 7th century, the Byzantines organized an expedition against the Slavs in the area. They subdued many Slavic tribes and established a new theme of Thrace in the hinterland of Thessaloniki, despite these temporary successes, the rule in the region was far from stable. The Empire instead resorted to withdraw its defense-line south along the Aegean coast, as a consequence, a new theme called Macedonia was created between 789 and 801/802 by the Empress Irene of Athens, from the older theme of Thrace. Sigillographic evidence shows that a tourma named Macedonia existed before, subordinated to the strategos of Thrace, however, the theme of Macedonia was attested again in 1006/7, and there is some sigillographic evidence to support its continued existence alongside the doukaton of Adrianople. Little is known of the organization in the 12th century. The core area of the old theme of Macedonia was recorded as the province of Adrianople, the seat of the new theme was Adrianople, and it comprised modern Western Thrace, the western parts of Eastern Thrace, and the southern fringes of Northern Thrace. In later days, to the west it bounded the theme of Thessalonica, thus, the theme of Macedonia had no relation to the historical region of Macedonia, and when Byzantine sources of the 10th to 12th centuries refer to Macedonia, they mean the area of western Thrace. Hence, for instance, the emperor Basil I the Macedonian hailed from Thrace, being derived from the theme of Thrace, Macedonia was counted among the Eastern themes, which ranked higher in Byzantine hierarchy than the Western themes. In the late 9th and 10th centuries, its strategos ranked in the tier of thematic governors. He received a salary of 36 pounds of gold, and, according to the account of Ibn al-Faqih. A number of soldiers were also permanently stationed in the theme. Strymon, which was originally a kleisoura of Macedonia, was split off sometime in the early 9th century, taking some 2,000 men along with itMacedonia (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece c. 900, with the themes and major settlements.
23. Mesopotamia (theme) – Mesopotamia was the name of a Byzantine theme located in what is today eastern Turkey. It should not be confused with the region of Mesopotamia or with the older Roman, the Byzantine theme was located between the rivers Arsanias and Çimisgezek. The theme was formed probably between 899 and 911, when Emperor Leo VI the Wise appointed the former strategos of the Charsianon, named Orestes, most of the province was formed out the Armenian principality of Takis, ruled by the chieftain Manuel. Manuel and his four sons were persuaded to cede their territory to the Byzantine Empire in exchange for titles and estates in other themes, the Armenian-populated districts of Keltzene and Kamacha were then joined to it to form the new theme. Although Emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos mentions that before its elevation to a theme, a seal of a spatharios and strategos of Mesopotamia has been dated to c. 810, perhaps indicating the existence of a first short-lived theme there, and this may also explain the peculiar custom of its strategos drawing, until 911, his salary not from the imperial treasury but from the customs proceeds of the kommerkion of his province. Commanders of the continued to be appointed throughout the 10th century, co-existing with the new post of doux of Mesopotamia. Unlike the strategos, the doux was a commander, controlling the central sector of Byzantiums eastern frontier. In the 11th century, most of the doukes of Mesopotamia were Armenians, including Gregory Magistros. In the aftermath of the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, Emperor Michael VII Doukas tried to re-establish Byzantine authority, but the province fell to the Seljuk TurksMesopotamia (theme) – Seal of John Kastamonites, vestes and katepano of Mesopotamia
24. Moglena – Almopia, or Enotia, also known in the Middle Ages as Moglena, is a municipality and a former province of the Pella regional unit in Macedonia, Greece. The seat of the municipality is the town Aridaia, the municipality has an area of 985.817 km2. The name Almopia derives from the Almopes, the tribe that inhabited the area during Antiquity. The Almopes traced their descent to the mythological figure of Almops, son of Poseidon. According to Thucidydes, the Almopes were expelled from the region when it was incorporated into the ancient Macedonian kingdom during the reign of Alexander I, the 2nd-century astronomer and geographer Claudius Ptolemy records three cities in the region in his Geography, Horma, Europos and Apsalos. In the early Byzantine period, the area was renamed to Enotia after a nearby fortress, the name was revived between 1915 and 1927 for the Greek province as well. In the later Middle Ages, the area was known as Moglena, until the early 11th century, Moglena was a province of the First Bulgarian Empire. Captured by the Byzantine emperor Basil II in 1015, it is attested as the seat of a bishopric in 1020, the area remained under Byzantine rule until the aftermath of the Fourth Crusade, when it was captured by Tsar Kaloyan of the Second Bulgarian Empire. In Ottoman times, the region was known by its Turkish name Karacaova or Karadjova. Until the Greco-Turkish War and the exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1924, Pomaks inhabited a large part of the regions of Moglena. Its territory corresponded with that of the current municipality of Almopia, megleno-Romanians Pomaks Population exchange between Greece and Turkey Current locations of Almopia regionMoglena – Almopia Αλμωπία
25. Nicopolis (theme) – The Theme of Nicopolis or Nikopolis was the name of a Byzantine theme located in northwestern Greece, encompassing Aetolia-Acarnania and southern Epirus. It was established in the half of the 9th century, probably after 886. Like most of the Balkans, the Epirus region had been overrun, very little is known about the region during the 7th–9th centuries, but from the prevalence of Slavic toponyms it is clear that they settled in large numbers throughout the region. It is in context that the theme of Nicopolis was established. It was founded sometime in the half of the 9th century. The most probable date is some time after 886, in the reign of Emperor Leo VI the Wise, in circa 930, the province was raided and temporarily occupied by the Bulgarians. The Bulgarians returned under Tsar Samuel who moved the centre of Bulgarian power south and west to Ohrid, the region suffered in the Byzantine–Norman Wars of the late 11th century, Arta was unsuccessfully besieged and Ioannina was captured by Robert Guiscard. Nicopolis survived as a theme until the Fourth Crusade in 1204, at the time, Arta seems to have been the provincial capital. In the partitio Romaniae of 1204, Nicopolis and most of Epirus were promised to Venice, by the time of his death in 1214/1215, Michael had established a strong state, the Despotate of Epirus, with the former theme of Nicopolis at its core. The theme of Nicopolis, by the late 9th century, comprised the modern Greek prefecture of Aetolia-Acarnania, in Late Antiquity, this corresponded to the province of Epirus vetus, but also included Aetolia, which was part of the province of Achaea. Despite its name, the capital of the theme was not Nicopolis, which at the lay in ruins either due to the Slavic invasions or due to Arab raids. The theme was divided into tourmai, each under its own tourmarches. In addition, as the theme was a base for Byzantine operations across the Adriatic into southern Italy. Warren Treadgold conjecturally estimates its military strength at some 1,000 infantry, the Late Medieval Balkans, A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest. Ann Arbor, University of Michigan Press, Oxford and New York, Oxford University Press. Nesbitt, John W. Oikonomides, Nicolas, eds, catalogue of Byzantine Seals at Dumbarton Oaks and in the Fogg Museum of Art, Volume 2, South of the Balkans, the Islands, South of Asia Minor. Washington, DC, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, tabula Imperii Byzantini, Band 3, Nikopolis und Kephallēnia. Vienna, Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Treadgold, Warren T. Byzantium and Its Army, 284–1081Nicopolis (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece ca. 900 AD, with the themes and major settlements.
26. Opsikion – The Opsician Theme or simply Opsikion was a Byzantine theme located in northwestern Asia Minor. Created from the imperial army, the Opsikion was the largest and most prestigious of the early themes. Involved in several revolts in the 8th century, it was split in three after ca,750, and lost its former pre-eminence. It survived as a theme until after the Fourth Crusade. The Opsician theme was one of the first four themes, and has its origin in the armies of the East Roman army. The term Opsikion derives from the Latin term Obsequium, which by the early 7th century came to refer to the units escorting the emperor on campaign and it is possible that at an early stage, the Opsikion was garrisoned inside Constantinople itself. Thus the Opsician theme was the area where the imperial Opsikion was settled, the exact date of the themes establishment is unknown, the earliest reference points to a creation as early as 626, but the first confirmed occurrence is in 680. It is possible that it initially included the area of Thrace. The unique origin of the Opsikion was reflected in several aspects of the themes organization, thus the title of its commander was not stratēgos as with the other themes, but komēs, in full komēs tou basilikou Opsikiou. Its prestige is further illustrated by the seals of its commanders, already in 668, on the death of Emperor Constans II in Sicily, the count Mezezius staged an abortive coup. Under the patrikios Barasbakourios, the Opsikion was the main power-base of Emperor Justinian II, Justinian II also settled many Slavs captured in Thrace there, in an attempt to boost its military strength. Most of them, however, deserted to the Arabs on the first battle, in 717, the Opsicians supported the rise of Leo III the Isaurian to the throne, but in 718, their count, the patrikios Isoes, rose up unsuccessfully against him. In 741–742, the kouropalatēs Artabasdos used the theme as a base for his usurpation of Emperor Constantine V. In 766, another count was blinded after a mutiny against the same emperor. As a result, Emperor Constantine V set out to weaken the power by splitting off the new themes of the Boukellarioi. At the same time, the emperor recruited a new set of elite and staunchly iconoclast guard regiments, in the 9th century, he is recorded as receiving an annual salary of 30 pounds of gold, and of commanding 6,000 men. The thematic capital was moved to Nicaea, in the great Revolt of Thomas the Slav in the early 820s, the Opsikion remained loyal to Emperor Michael II. In 866, the Opsician stratēgos, George Peganes, rose up along with the Thracesian Theme against Basil I the Macedonian, then the junior co-emperor of Michael III,930, Basil Chalkocheir revolted against Emperor Romanos I LekapenosOpsikion – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire c. 780.
27. Optimatoi – The Optimatoi were initially formed as an elite Byzantine military unit. In the mid-8th century, however, they were downgraded to a supply and logistics corps and assigned a province in north-western Asia Minor, as an administrative unit, the Theme of the Optimatoi survived until the Ottoman conquest in the first decades of the 14th century. The Optimates were first set up in the late 6th century, according to the Strategikon of Emperor Maurice, the Optimates were an elite regiment of Foederati, most likely of Gothic origin. They were a corps, somewhere between one and five thousand strong, and formed part of the central reserve army, their commander bearing the then unique title of taxiarchēs. The presence of descendants of men, called Gothograeci by the chronicler Theophanes the Confessor, is attested in northern Bithynia as late as the early 8th century. At that time, Warren Treadgold estimates that the corps numbered 2,000 men, the same period also saw the further dismemberment and weakening of the once powerful Opsician Theme with the creation of the Bucellarian Theme. Consequently, their commanding domestikos held the lowest rank of all provincial stratēgoi in the imperial hierarchyOptimatoi – Map of the administrative structure of the Byzantine Empire c. 780. The thema of the Optimatoi is located in the peninsula directly across the Bosporus, opposite Constantinople.
28. Paphlagonia (theme) – The Theme of Paphlagonia was a military-civilian province of the Byzantine Empire in the namesake region along the northern coast of Anatolia, in modern Turkey. The theme of Paphlagonia and its governing strategos are first mentioned in November 826, the territory of the theme corresponds roughly to the late antique province of Paphlagonia, which had been subsumed in the themes of Opsikion and Boukellarion. Its administrative and ecclesiastical capital, as during Antiquity, was Gangra, according to the Arab geographers Ibn Khordadbeh and Ibn al-Faqih, the province numbered 5,000 troops and five fortified places. A notable exception to the usual thematic hierarchy is the existence of a katepano, in charge of a naval squadron, with his seat at Amastris. After the Fourth Crusade, Paphlagonia came under the control of David Komnenos and these remained in Byzantine hands until the late 14th century, when they were taken over by the Turks or the GenoesePaphlagonia (theme) – The Asian themes of the Byzantine Empire c. 842.
29. Peloponnese (theme) – The Theme of the Peloponnese was a Byzantine military-civilian province encompassing the Peloponnese peninsula in southern Greece. 800, and its capital was Corinth, from 27 BC until the end of the 6th century, the Peloponnese formed part of the province of Achaea, which during Late Antiquity comprised also the eastern parts of Central Greece. The literary evidence is confirmed by several buried coin hoards from the 570s/580s and early 7th century. 587, the date provided by the Chronicle, and one that peaked in the far larger crisis of the reign of Heraclius, the formation of the new province is directly linked to the re-imposition of the Byzantine governments control over the Slavic tribes at this time. This was achieved by the victories of the strategos Skleros in 805, as reported by the Chronicle of Monemvasia, emperor Nikephoros I followed up these successes with an extensive colonization and Christianization programme, which included the regions resettlement with Greeks from Italy and Asia Minor. The first known strategos of the Peloponnese is Leo Skleros, attested for 811, the strategos of the Peloponnese ranked first in the hierarchy of the western thematic governors. After the Byzantine reconquest of Crete in 961 put an end to the piratical emirate there, the joint theme of Hellas-Peloponnese was subdivided further during the 12th century into a series of smaller fiscal districts variously termed oria, chartoularata and episkepseis. The Peloponnese remained under Byzantine control until the early 13th century, when, in the aftermath of the Fourth Crusade, the Latin Principality of Achaea was established therePeloponnese (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece ca. 900 AD, with the themes and major settlements.
30. Samos (theme) – The Theme of Samos was a Byzantine military-civilian province, located in the eastern Aegean Sea, established in the late 9th century. As one of the Byzantine Empires three dedicated naval themes, it served chiefly to provide ships and troops for the Byzantine navy, the dates of establishment and the territorial reach of the various Byzantine naval commands in the 7th–9th centuries are mostly unclear. The historian Warren Treadgold interprets this to mean that Samos was the first seat of the Karabisianoi fleet, alternatively, it could imply a command that formed part of the Karabisianoi and was abolished with them, or a later, short-lived successor, perhaps even identical with the Cibyrrhaeots. The existence of a strategos of Samos in the 8th century is attested through a seal of a strategos named Theodore. This command then, or at least the part of it. The theme of Samos, with its governing strategos, is first documented in Philotheoss Kletorologion of 899 and it included the islands of the eastern Aegean, as well as the western coast of Asia Minor between Adramyttion and Ephesos. The seat of the theme was at Smyrna, while subordinate tourmarchai had their seats at Adramyttion, in 911, the forces of the naval theme of Samos are recorded as being 3,980 oarsmen and 600 marines, with a fleet of 22 warships. The mainland portion of the theme, however, is explicitly mentioned as belonging to the Thracesian Theme. Samos seems to have remained a military formation until the late 11th centurySamos (theme) – Map of Byzantine Greece c. 900, with the themes and major settlements.