Course Information
SchoolHistory and Archaeology
Cycle / Level1st / Undergraduate
Teaching PeriodWinter/Spring
Course ID600019235

Programme of Study: PPS Tmīmatos Istorías kai Archaiologías 2020-2021

Registered students: 94
OrientationAttendance TypeSemesterYearECTS
ISTORIASSpecialization Core Courses326

Class Information
Academic Year2023 – 2024
Class PeriodWinter
Faculty Instructors
Class ID
Course Type 2021
Specialization / Direction
Course Type 2016-2020
  • Scientific Area
Course Type 2011-2015
Specific Foundation / Core
Mode of Delivery
  • Face to face
Digital Course Content
The course is also offered to exchange programme students.
Language of Instruction
  • Greek (Instruction, Examination)
  • English (Examination)
General Prerequisites
It is recommended not to be selected by students who have not secured the course HBY 151.
Learning Outcomes
In brief, students who attend the course are expected to understand the reasons that led to the gradual transformation of the so-called Later Roman to the Byzantine Empire of medieval times (officially and broadly known then as “Romania” or “Rhomaion politeia”); moreover, they will assimilate the main differences between the Eastern Roman state and society and it’s neighboring areas of the Late Antiquity (late 3rd - early 7th c. A.D.) and subsequent Middle Ages (mid. 7th c. onwards); finally, through a methodological approach and analysis of the most important historical works of the same eras, they will be become familiar with approaching the written sources and other instruments of studying the early and middle Byzantine historical periods. In more detail, students are expected to: • possess specialized knowledge on the History of the Byzantine State and Byzantine society during the period 324-1081 AD, specifically regarding the gradual transformation of the (Eastern) Later Roman Empire to the Byzantine Empire of medieval times ("Rhomaion politeia" or "Romania") and the main political, military and social developments from the 4th to 11th c. A.D. • possess specialized knowledge regarding the internal organization, institutions, political history (emperors and dynasties, imperial power, political factors, aristocracy and lower classes, state policy and disputes) and the external relations (diplomacy and wars) of Byzantium with its neighbors. • possess specialized knowledge of the various historical developments that took place in the areas of Mediterranean Sea, Southeastern Europe and Near East and led to the transition from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages as well as the effects of the above. • be able to analyze and assess comparatively the differences (political and social / cultural) between the periods of Late Antiquity (Early Byzantine period) and the Middle Ages (Middle Byzantine period) regarding the geographical worlds of Mediterranean areas and the Balkans. • be able to correlate information of the sources and the views of the modern research regarding the historical developments between the 4th and the 11th c. A.D. and to draw clear conclusions about the most important developments - events (causes and effects) and differences (characteristics) of the individual periods between 324-1081. • be able to answer specialized questions within the specific topic, which involve both critical thinking and empirical knowledge.
General Competences
  • Work autonomously
  • Appreciate diversity and multiculturality
  • Advance free, creative and causative thinking
Course Content (Syllabus)
The course focuses on the presentation of the gradual transformation of the Later Roman Empire to the Byzantine Empire of medieval times (“Romania”) and the analysis of the most important political, military and social developments that took place from the 4th to 11th c. AD to the Eastern Mediterranean world (mainly in the Balkans and Asia Minor). The main objectives of the course are the synthetic approach and understanding of the main historical developments in the Balkan peninsula and Eastern Mediterranean world from the late 3rd to the 11th c. A.D., the familiarization with the gradual transformation of the Later Roman to the Byzantine Empire. The purpose of tutoring is also the methodological approach and analysis of the most important sources of the era and the performance of students in the use and interpretation of relevant sources. Content of lectures (Syllabus): Week #1 Introduction: The transition from Rome to Byzantium (late 3rd - 4th c. AD.). Byzantine emperors and imperial dynasties from 4th to 11th c. AD. The sources of the era. Special characteristics and research problems. Week #2 Constantine I as sole emperor (324-337) and the second Flavian dynasty (306/24-363): The rise to power. The reforms of Constantine. The new capital. Constantine and Christianity. The succession of Constantine. Week #3 The successors of Constantine I: Constantius II, Julian, Jovian and Valens. Week #4 The Theodosian dynasty, the Goths and Christianity: Imperial politics and the formation of a new society from the second half of the 4th c. to the first half of the 5th c. AD. Week #5 The East under its own Emperor: The constitution, the institutions, the regime factors and the state ideology of the eastern part of the Empire. Week #6 The fall of the Roman West (395-476) and the stabilization of the East during the 5th c. AD.: The German invasions and other factors led to the fall of the West. The reasons for the survival of the East. Week # Anastasius I (491-518), Justinian I (527-565) and his successors: Achievements and losses during the 6th c. AD. Week #8 Byzantium in the 7th c. AD.: The final transition from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages. The sources of the so-called “dark centuries” of Byzantium. The Rise of Islam and the Arab conquests in the Middle East and northern Africa. The Slavs and Bulgarians in the Balkans. A new society and a new empire. Week #9 The Isaurian dynasty and Iconoclasm: The struggle with Arabs and Bulgarians. The conflict about Icons. Administrative and military changes. Week #10 Byzantium during the 9th c. AD.: The end of Iconoclasm and the Christianization of the Slavs and Bulgarians. Week #11 The so-called “Macedonian” dynasty and the strengthening of the Empire during the 10th c. AD.: The Byzantine society and the state in the 10th c. The expansion of the Empire in the East and the Balkans. Week #12 The Byzantine Empire during the 11th c. AD.: From strength and prosperity to crisis. New administrative structures. Political instability and military weakness. The new enemies in the frontiers of the Empire (Turks, Normans and Pechenegs). Territorial losses in the East. The relations with the West. The historical developments from the Schism of 1054 to the First Crusade. Week #13 Summary of courses and conclusions: Review and discussion. General guidelines for the written examination.
Rome, Byzantium, empire, Goths, Persia, Avars, Slavs, Arabs, Turks, Bulgarians, Constantine, Theodosius, Justinian, Heraclius, Isaurians, Iconoclasm, Christianity, church, state, administration, society, themata
Educational Material Types
  • Slide presentations
  • Book
Use of Information and Communication Technologies
Use of ICT
  • Use of ICT in Course Teaching
  • Use of ICT in Communication with Students
The teaching of the course shall take place mainly through lectures with simultaneous use of visual material, such as view tables and cards, maps, photos of landscapes and archaeological findings through the use of Power-point and the platform Opencourses.auth (see in: There will also be a study and methodological approach of key medieval texts. Communication with the students through emails.
Course Organization
Reading Assigment112.5
Student Assessment
Written exams, mostly involving critical thinking. Οptional oral examination only for Εrasmus students.
Student Assessment methods
  • Written Exam with Extended Answer Questions (Summative)
Course Bibliography (Eudoxus)
(1) Γ. Α. Λεβενιώτης, Βυζαντινή Ιστορία Ι (324-1081), (σημ.: ηλεκτρονικό / διαδικτυακό εγχειρίδιο ελεύθερης και δωρεάν πρόσβασης, εκτός Ευδόξου, πλήρης κάλυψη της ύλης του μαθήματος) (2) C. Mango (επιμ.), Πανεπιστήμιο της Οξφόρδης. Ιστορία του Βυζαντίου, μτφρ. Ο. Καραγιώργου, επιμ. ελλ. έκδ. Γ. Μωυσείδου, Αθήνα 2006 (σημ.: Εύδοξος) (3) Ι. Ε. Καραγιαννόπουλος, Ιστορία Βυζαντινού κράτους. Τόμος Β´. Ιστορία Μέσης Βυζαντινής περιόδου (565-1081), Θεσσαλονίκη 1991 (σημ.: Εύδοξος)
Additional bibliography for study
• A. H. M. Jones, Τhe Later Roman Empire 284-602. A Social, Economic and Administrative Survey, τ. 1-3, Oxford 1964 • Ιστορία του ελληνικού έθνους (Εκδοτική Αθηνών). Τόμος Ζ´. Βυζαντινός ελληνισμός. Πρωτοβυζαντινοί χρόνοι, Αθήναι 1978, Τόμος Η΄. Η Βυζαντινή αυτοκρατορία του ελληνικού έθνους, 642-1071, Αθήναι 1979 • W. Treadgold, The Byzantine Revival, 780-842, Stanford California 1988 • W. Treadgold, Byzantium and its Army 284-1081, Stanford California 1995 • A. Demandt, Die Spätantike. Römische Geschichte von Diocletian bis Justinian, 284-565 n.Chr., München 1989 • Αικ. Χριστοφιλοπούλου, Βυζαντινή ιστορία. Α´ 324-610, Θεσσαλονίκη 21996, Β΄1 610-867, Θεσσαλονίκη 21998, Β΄2 867-1081, Θεσσαλονίκη 1997 • G. Dagron, Η γέννηση μιας πρωτεύουσας. Η Κωνσταντινούπολη και οι θεσμοί της, 330-451, μτφρ. Μ. Λουκάκη Αθήνα 2000 • Ι. Ε. Καραγιαννόπουλος, Το Βυζαντινό κράτος, Θεσσαλονίκη 2001 • Κ. E. Πλακογιαννάκης, Ελληνική ανατολική αυτοκρατορία των μέσων αιώνων. Τιμητικοί τίτλοι και ενεργά αξιώματα στο Βυζάντιο. Εθιμοτυπία, διοίκηση, στρατός, Αθήνα 2001 • W. Brandes, Finanzverwaltung in Krisenzeiten. Untersuchungen zur byzantinischen Administration im 6.-9. Jahrhundert, Frankfurt a.M. 2002 • Α. Καρπόζηλος, Βυζαντινοί ιστορικοί και χρονογράφοι. Τόμος Α´ (4ος-7ος αι.), Αθήνα 1997, Τόμος Β´ (8ος-10ος αι.), Αθήνα 2002, Τόμος Γ´ (11ος-12ος αι.), Αθήνα 2009 • Αικ. Χριστοφιλοπούλου, Το πολίτευμα και οι θεσμοί της Bυζαντινής αυτοκρατορίας 324-1204. Κράτος - διοίκηση - οικονομία - κοινωνία, Αθήνα 2004 • J. F. Haldon, The Palgrave Atlas of Byzantine History, New York 2005 • Α. Ε. Λαΐου (γεν. εποπτ.), Οικονομική ιστορία του Βυζαντίου από τον 7ο έως τον 15ο αιώνα, επιστημ. επιτρ. C. Morrisson - X. Mπούρας - Ν. Οικονομίδης - Κ. Πιτσάκης, Αθήνα 2006 • C. Morrisson (διεύθ.), O βυζαντινός κόσμος. Τόμος Α´. Η Ανατολική Ρωμαϊκή αυτοκρατορία (330-641), μτφρ. Α. Καραστάθη. επιμ. Α. Μυλωνοπούλου, εισαγ. Τ. Κιουσοπούλου, Αθήνα 2007 • Γ. Α. Λεβενιώτης, Η πολιτική κατάρρευση του Βυζαντίου στην Ανατολή. Το ανατολικό σύνορο και η κεντρική Μικρά Ασία κατά το β´ ήμισυ του 11ου αι., τ. 1-2, Θεσσαλονίκη 2007. • J.-Cl. Cheynet (διεύθ.), O βυζαντινός κόσμος. Τόμος Β´. Η Βυζαντινή αυτοκρατορία (641-1204), μτφρ. Α. Καραστάθη, επιμ. Γ. Μωυσείδου - Α. Παπασυριόπουλος - Α. Μαραγκάκη, Αθήνα 2011 • L. Brubaker - J. Haldon, Byzantium in the Iconoclastic Era, c. 680-850: A History, Cambridge - New York 2011
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