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The Byzness, 28th February 2016

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 We are delighted to announce the online publication of our annual society newsletter, The Byzantinist.

Please see the latest issue here and previous issues here.


49th Spring Symposium of Byzantine Studies, Inscribing Texts in Byzantium: Continuities and Transformations, 18-20 March 2016, Exeter College, Oxford

The full programme and on-line booking form (early rates apply until 1 March!) are now available on the SPBS website here. Symposiarchs: Marc Lauxtermann and Ida Toth



Water and Religious Life in the Roman and Late Antique Near East, A Two-Day International Workshop at Durham University, Tuesday 22nd March 2016, 6:30pm onwards & Wednesday 23rd March 2016, 9:15am – 5:30pm

Whilst water has permeated countless dimensions of religious life throughout history, the Roman and Late Antique Near East provides an especially rich context for the study of this topic. Our chronological range, from the Roman conquest in 64 BC to the rise of Islam in the seventh century AD, bears witness to the development of pagan, Jewish and Christian religious traditions and their interaction on local and regional scales. Our geographical span, stretching from Iraq’s western border to the eastern Mediterranean coast, incorporates a striking variety of microclimates, which fostered distinctive local responses to the hydrological environment and elevated the importance of water in both sacred and utilitarian contexts across the region. It is this concurrent religious and environmental diversity that recommends the Roman and Late Antique Near East as a stimulating setting to examine the relationship between water and religious life.
For details please see here.


The Association Rodopis – Experience Ancient History, in cooperation with the Department of Cultural Heritage and with the Department of History, Civilization and Culture of the Alma mater studiorum – University of Bologna, is planning an international workshop to be held in Bologna on 14-15 April 2016, on the following topic: Politics beyond the Emperor: structures, strategies and evolution of the powers behind the throne from Rome to Byzantium

Starting from the age of Augustus, and for almost 1500 years, several emperors became the head of the Roman State (including Byzantium, which was the political and juridical continuation of the Roman Empire). The new political system based on autocracy, however, did not end the exercise of politics within the State. On the contrary, many actors and interest groups continued to try to influence the decisions of the monarch – and they often succeeded. This was not usually done through conspiracy and open revolt, as it is sometimes assumed, but rather happened within the frame of the normal functioning of the State. Roman and Byzantine history records a wealth of individuals who saw their position rise enormously, only to fall suddenly in the shadows – or worse – shortly afterwards. In these power games, the actors were not moved exclusively by self-interest: rather, they had a complex network of contacts, alliances and patronage on which to build their career – and to which they were somehow accountable. Violent action against the ruler were consequently only the acute phase of an ongoing political debate, even though such debate is not always easy to trace in the sources.

This last aspect has recently come to the attention of the scholars, and there is a new interest for the possibilities of excercising political activity by an “aristocracy” which never ceased to play a key role in the precarious balance of power which characterised the Roman State.

Ph.D. candidates and young researchers are invited to submit an abstract on a topic regarding the exercise of politics within the normal functioning of the State, either by individuals or interest groups (be they military, political, economic or religious groups) between 31 B.C. and 1081 A.D., bearing in mind the following for periods (the dates are merely indicative):

  1. Imperial age (I-IIIcentury A.D.)
  2. Late antiquity (IV-VI century A.D.)
  3. First byzantine period (VII-IX century A.D.)
  4. Middle-byzantine period (X-XI century A.D.)

Each period will be covered in a session involving two/three contributions of 20 minutes each, which can be given in Italian, English or French; afterwards, a short discussion will take place, presided by a chairman with a distinguished academic record in the relative field. At the end of the workshop, a round table will provide an occasion for a general review of the issues emerged during the various sessions.

Rules for submitting the abstract

Those interested in participating are invited to send an abstract of no more than 300 words, possibly in pdf format, to the within 15 March 2016. Contributions may be submitted in Italian, English or French. The abstract should include namesurnamestatus and affiliation (if applicable) of the applicant. A CV should also be attached to the accompanying e-mail. The result of the application will be made known within 25 March 2016.

For further information contact:

Alessandro Roncaglia,; or Federico Alpi,



The BIAA is calling for applications for the following opportunities:

  • 5K Project Grants – up to 5K per year for a maximum of three years
  • study grants to allow postdoctoral researchers to carry out periods of study abroad
  • scholarships to enable students from Turkey and the Black Sea region to travel in the UK or Ankara
  • an annual post-doctoral fellowship
  • the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies Fieldwork award

Please clink on the following link for more information, application forms and procedures to apply


Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Facilitating Access to Latin Inscriptions), Faculty of Classics, Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles’, Oxford, and Ashmolean Museum, Beaumont Street, Oxford, Grade 7: £30,738 – £32,600 p.a.

Applications are invited for a full-time Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, to work on the AHRC-funded project ‘Facilitating Access to Latin inscriptions in Britain’s Oldest Public Museum through Scholarship and Technology’. The post is fixed-term, to cover the period from 1 April 2016 to the end of the project on 31 December 2016. The principal responsibilities of the Research Fellow will be to fulfil the project’s impact and public engagement agenda and to complete the development of digital resources (EpiDoc corpus and website) under the direction of Professor Alison Cooley (PI, University of Warwick) and Dr Paul Roberts (Keeper of Greek and Roman Antiquities, Ashmolean Museum).

The successful applicant must possess a doctorate in a relevant field, and be able to demonstrate experience of working in EpiDoc programming or TEI, proficient IT skills, including web design and authoring, and experience of working in collaboration with schools, whether primary and/or secondary, excellent communication skills, and the ability to carry out research independently.

Owing to the nature of this position, any offer of employment with the University will be subject to a satisfactory security screening and to a satisfactory disclosure report from the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Applications for this vacancy are to be made online via and enter Vacancy ID 122067.

The closing date for applications is 12.00 noon on 7 March 2016.

Contact Person : Miss Clare Jarvis

Contact Phone : 01865 288391

Contact Email :


Matthew Kinloch

DPhil Candidate, History
President, Oxford University Byzantine Society


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