The Byzness, 9th October 2022



The Byzness, 9th October 2022 (Michaelmas Week 1)






1.             NEWS AND EVENTS

ROUND TABLE: ‘A Companion to North Africa in Antiquity’, RomanIslam – Center for Comparative Empire and Transcultural Studies, University of Hamburg. Tue 11 October, 17.00 BST / 18.00 CEST.

This round table will take place on Tues. October 11, 2022, 6 -8 pm (German time) on Zoom and will comprise the book presentation “A Companion to North Africa in Antiquity” by Bruce Hitchner (Tufts). The following discussion as well as the moderation will be held by Stefan Ardeleanu (Universität Hamburg).

Please confirm your participation to The lecture will take place in English. For details, see

SEMINAR SERIES: Seminarium późnoantyczne Ewy Wipszyckiej / Ewa Wipszycka’s Late Antique Seminar Series, University of Warsaw. Thursdays at 17.45 BST / 16.45 CEST.

This semester, Ewa Wipszycka’s Late Antique Seminar will begin on 13 October. Meetings will take place in Room 209 at the Faculty of Law and Administration, UW (Collegium Iuridicum I), Warsaw. To join a live stream via Zoom, visit To find the list of papers and scheduled meeting days, visit Everyone is most welcome!

The first seminar is the following.

‘New Documents from the Time of ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz ibn Marwān: The Archive of the Hermonthite Pagarchy’, Lajos Berkes. Thu 13 October, 17.45 BST / 16.45 CEST. 

Abstract: “This paper presents the recently identified and completely unpublished archive of the Hermonthite pagarchy which is being prepared for publication by Esther Garel, Nikolaos Gonis, and the author of this abstract. It consists of various administrative documents, mostly letters and accounts, written in Greek and Coptic. The archive comes from a crucial period of Egyptian history, the governorship of ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz ibn Marwān (in office 685–705) which witnessed large-scale transformation in administrative practices. After a general overview of the archive, this paper will focus on communications from the governor’s office and other Arab officials.”

CONFERENCE: Association des étudiants du monde byzantin. XIIIth International Meeting of Young Researchers in Byzantine Studies ‘Seeing, Not Seeing, and Being Seen: Vision as construction and as experience in the Byzantine World’ (Fri 14 – Sat 15 October, Institut national d’histoire de l’art, Paris)

The Association of Students of the Byzantine World / Association des étudiants du monde byzantin announces its 12th International Post-Graduate Conference, to take place in Paris  on the 14th and 15th of October, at the Institut national d’histoire de l’art, Room Fabri de Peiresc. The theme of this year’s conference is Seeing, Not Seeing, and Being Seen: Vision as construction and as experience in the Byzantine World. There will be presentations given in both English and French. 

The conference will be followed by the general assembly of the association, and the election of the 2022-2023 board. Every position (president, treasurer, secretary) is open.

For details and a full programme, please visit

There will be presentations given in both English and French. If you are unable to be in Paris, you can attend via  GoToMeeting  using the following link :

LECTURE ANNOUNCEMENT: ‘East of Byzantium: Syriac Christianity Along the Silk Road’, Li Tang (University of Salzburg). Tue 18 October, 17.00 BST / 12.00 EDT (Online via Zoom).

East of Byzantium is pleased to announce the first lecture in its 2022–2023 lecture series.

Li Tang will discuss the expansion of medieval Syriac Christianity in Central Asia and China and along the Silk Road. Advance registration required. Visit for upcoming events organised by East of Byzantium, and for further details and registration for this event.

Contact Brandie Ratliff (, Director, Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture with any questions.

East of Byzantium is a partnership between the Mashtots Professor of Armenian Studies at Harvard University and the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture that explores the cultures of the eastern frontier of the Byzantine empire in the late antique and medieval periods.

SEMINAR ANNOUNCEMENT: ‘Inheriting the Land: The Sanctification of the Holy Land in the Early Muslim Period’, Milka Levy-Rubin (Curator Emerita of the Humanities Collection, National Library of Israel). Thu 20 October, 17.15 BST / 18.15 CEST (Online via Zoom / Seminar Room 2, Hegelbau).

Tübingen Byzantine and Near Eastern Seminar. For a programme of this term’s events, please see

The lecture is hybrid. For online (Zoom) registration please contact

PRESENTATION: Byzantine Music: an Ode to God and its Path through Time (Friday 21st October at 7:15pm at the Hellenic Centre, 16-18 Paddington Street London).

The Servers’ Society UK Association and the Greek non-profit society ‘Omilos Eksipiretiton’ (The Servers’ Society) are co-hosting an event about Byzantine music on Friday 21st October at 7:15pm at the Hellenic Centre, 16-18 Paddington Street London.  

“Join us on a musical journey through time and eras, to follow the history and evolution of Byzantine music and participate in an interactive experience that includes the notation and chants of this liturgical music. 

It is a presentation that aims at bringing Byzantine music closer to the public not only in terms of its history and tradition but also through experiencing and enjoying live chanting of byzantine hymns. The first part of the presentation will be an introduction to the basic characteristics of Byzantine music and the second part will be an interactive experiential workshop using the notation system as a guide and the human voice as a means of expression. The general presentation and the musical chanting of the Byzantine hymns will be overseen and performed by Mr Lazaros Koumentakis, Theologist-Protopsaltes and Music Teacher-Musician with an expertise on Byzantine musicology.” 

Free entry; booking essential on 07960 797435 or at

WINTER SCHOOL ANNOUNCEMENT: Persian Language Winter School, ASPIRANTUM School of languages and cultures, Dec 5 – Dec 30, 2022, (Yerevan, Armenia)

  • The testimonials of ASPIRANTUM Persian language summer and winter school alumni are available here:
  • 2022 Persian language 28 days of winter school will help the participants to master skills in written and oral modern Persian, read and interpret Persian texts from different periods as well as rapidly deepen their knowledge in colloquial Persian.
  • The Persian language winter school offers 80 hours of intensive Persian language classes during 20 days of teaching (from Monday till Friday each week). Every day the participants will receive Persian language instruction for 4 hours. The classes start in the mornings and the schedule is the following:
  • During the Persian language winter classes the following components will be covered every day to foster the Persian language knowledge of participants at a rapid pace:
  • Grammar: Every day class will cover the main grammatical concepts of the modern Persian language.
  • Vocabulary: During the 3 weeks course it is anticipated that the participants will learn around 1000 new Persian words from literary language as well as words used in everyday life.
  • Listening: The classes are scheduled in a way that participants with the guidance of an experienced instructor learn the Persian language through songs and movies as well as watching and listening to news and other short videos about interesting and sometimes funny topics and stories about Iranian realities.
  • Speaking: Every day the Persian language classes will push the students to exercise their speaking abilities through discussions, conversations, and interpretations of different texts and topics.
  • Writing: Each day the participants of the Persian language class will have assignments and homework to complete for the next day. The homework will primarily involve writing assignments and those will be assessed by the teacher and discussed the next day’s Persian language class.
  • Reading: Every day students will read and discuss political texts, prose and poetry, conversations, and news. The corpus of texts to be read and discussed during the classes comprises different prominent Persian authors, daily conversations as well as news of the day.
  • Levels: This Persian language school is designed for participants at least 18 years old, who want to make well-grounded progress in their knowledge of the Persian language, and deepen their knowledge of Persian grammar, colloquial speech and literary language.

The Persian language winter school 2022 will have 1 group of up to 12 participants (the ASPIRANTUM Persian language groups during the last two years have usually had 2-11 students). The participants must have at least lower-intermediate and intermediate levels of Persian language knowledge before starting the classes with ASPIRANTUM.

ASPIRANTUM’s Persian language schools are organized so that undergraduate and graduate students, researchers, professors, and anyone interested in learning Persian benefit from it the most. So everyone with lower-intermediate and intermediate levels of Persian is welcome to apply and participate in ASPIRANTUM’s Persian language winter school from December 5 till December 30 in Yerevan.

You can find the syllabus of the course here:

The deadline to apply to the 2022 Persian language winter school is October 25, 2022.

WINTER SCHOOL ANNOUNCEMENT: ‘Learn Persian through the Shahname’ online course, ASPIRANTUM School of languages and cultures, Nov 7 – Nov 18, 2022, (Online). The entire course will last for 2 weeks, but students may choose to participate in the first week.

“Learn Persian through the Shahname” is a near advanced course and students will need to have a solid background of Persian with at least intermediate skills in Persian reading comprehension. 

The testimonials of ASPIRANTUM Persian language summer, winter, and online school alumni are available here:

The “Learn Persian through the Shahname” online course will help the participants to master skills in Persian, particularly in reading and interpreting Persian classical poetry, deepen their knowledge of the Shahname and learn the etymologies and various meanings of Persian words.

The 2 weeks “Learn Persian through the Shahname” online course offers 40 hours of intensive Persian language classes from Monday till Friday each week during 10 days of teaching (or 20 hours during 5 days if participants choose to participate in the first week only). 

Every day the participants will receive Persian language instruction through the Shahname for 4 hours. In addition to reading and discussing the Shahname every day, the students will also read an article in Persian by an Iranian scholar about a unique aspect of the Shahname. These readings are available in our syllabus. Every day the class will start with a discussion of the homework and the mentioned article. Following this, the class will read, interpret and decipher one story from the Shahname. Each day’s class will end with discussion and questions. 

The full syllabus of the “Learn Persian through the Shahname” online course is available here: 

The deadline to apply to the 1 or 2-week “Learn Persian through the Shahname” online course is October 20, 2022.

FUNDRAISING EVENT: Hellenic & Roman Library fundraising event on Wednesday 19 October, starting at 6pm in the Senate Room, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU, followed by a reception in the Library.

Medusa is one of the most recognisable figures in Greek Myth: her face has stared out at us for millennia, from Agamemnon’s shield in the Iliad to Versace’s logo now. Gorgons and gorgon heads were an enormously popular feature on ancient statues and temples. So was Medusa always the terrifying monster we have made her? Natalie Haynes takes you on a fast-paced tour through the history of Medusa, who she was and why we still see her all around us today. From the author of Pandora’s Jar and the new/upcoming Medusa novel, Stone Blind, Natalie Haynes shows you how to survive contact with someone who can turn you to stone with a glance.

This event is held in aid of The Hellenic & Roman Library (HARL) ~ owned by the Hellenic and Roman Societies and Institute of Classical Studies, this is one of the world’s greatest Classics libraries. The Societies launched a fundraising campaign to meet rising costs and to maintain and enhance the Library as part of a world class research facility for future generations:

Please use the form below to book to book your places for Stone Blind.

2.             CALL FOR PAPERS

Animals and the Environment in Ancient Mediterranean Medicine

International Conference (in Hybrid Format): University of Exeter, UK, July 5-6th 2023.

This conference will explore animals as both objects of ancient medical and scientific endeavour and as subjects in their own right within their wider environmental context. It responds to recent calls for sustained dialogue between medical history (human and veterinary) and the burgeoning field of human-animal history (e.g. Woods et al., 2018; Woods, 2019). Classical studies have broadly embraced the animal turn but with little focus on medicine so far (though see e.g. Thumiger, 2021; Boehm and Luccioni (eds.), 2008). The aim here is to develop a richer, more wide-ranging account of animals within the ancient history of human/veterinary medicine alongside, and in conversation with, similar developments for later historical periods, and to reflect on the connections drawn in antiquity between humans, animals, and their environment, from a perspective of health, disease and wider well-being.

Much of the ancient medical attention paid to animals was essentially instrumental, in support of their vital roles in agriculture, warfare, hunting and other areas of human life. Medicine made extensive therapeutic use of a diverse set of animal products on its own account and exploited animal bodies for other purposes too. All these activities relied on assumptions that all living things were shaped by the same environmental and cosmic forces, able to interact on that basis, while also being differentially located in networks of value and meaning. Animals were always good to think with—comparatively, imaginatively, ethically—and good for constituting and challenging hierarchies. The lives and experiences of animals in the ancient Mediterranean world, their bodies and relationships, were all affected by these human actions and ideas, by medical practice and theory, but it is important to stress that animals were not just shaped by human/veterinary medicine, they also shaped it. Their behaviours and materialities, their ability to spread diseases to humans and to be a particular form of patient, and cure, all contributed to the production of the medical art. Taking an environmentally situated interspecies approach to ancient medical knowledge and medical interventions promises new insights across a range of themes and problems.

Abstracts are invited from scholars at any stage in their academic career, including PhD students, for papers that address any aspect of the topic. Some important themes include, but are by no means limited to:

  • Animals and disease: are there patterns to the ailments livestock shared with humans and those which were more specific? What is to be made of the plagues recorded in the historical sources as involving humans and cattle? What about other animals in epidemics? While notions of contagion seem more developed in herds and flocks than human populations (see Nutton, 2000), it is perhaps only hydrophobia and worms that were conceived as human diseases caused by animals, though poisonous bites and stings should perhaps also count. How did all these aetiologies work? What about illnesses named after or imagined as animals?
  • Animals as patients: livestock were mostly treated collectively, and by command, according to models more or less explicitly contrasting with ideals of individualised and actively participatory human medicine, at least for the free male elite. How far was this distinction blurred, by the methodic sect in Rome or in valetudinaria for the enslaved, or can cases of the individual treatment of animals, perhaps horses or favoured hunting dogs, be found? To what extent did generation and gendering divide the animal collective? What can osteological (and other material) evidence contribute on these issues?
  • Animals as therapy: both familiar and more exotic animals feature in ancient therapeutic repertoires, in whole and in part, and in various explanatory (or non-explanatory) frames. What sort of choices were made, and emphasised in these respects? Do animal products interact with humans in roughly the same or different ways than plants and other medicinal items? Are they differently described and specified? What about animal on animal cures? Were there particular animal therapeutics? Is there an archaeology of animal therapeutics?

Please submit abstracts, maximum 300 words, for a 20 minute paper followed by discussion to Prof. Rebecca Flemming, University of Exeter (, by November 30th 2022. Please provide a short biographical note, including any institutional affiliation and relevant research interests, with your abstract and please also indicate whether you intend to present your paper in person or remotely.


Job Opportunity: Assistant professorship in the social history of the ancient Mediterranean- Georgetown 

The Department of Classics at Georgetown University invites applications for a tenure-track position in the social history of the ancient Mediterranean to begin August 1, 2023. For the first year of this position, the successful candidate will also hold the title of Provost’s Distinguished Faculty Fellow, and will have no teaching and service responsibilities to allow a focus on research while receiving mentorship and support from two senior faculty members. After the first fellowship year, the teaching load is two courses per semester. The candidate is expected to teach courses on the ancient Mediterranean world in translation and should demonstrate a strong record of research as well as a commitment to collaborating with colleagues and mentoring undergraduate and postbaccalaureate students.

The application deadline is November 1, 2022. Further details can be found here:

For questions related to this position, please contact: Marden Nichols, Chair of Classics (

Three Research Positions Available: KU Leuven, Belgium, offers 3 full-time research positions – a Research Software Engineer (postdoctoral, 2+ years), a Postdoctoral Researcher (2 years) and a PhD scholar (4 years) – for suitably qualified candidates to form part of the research team of the European Research Council (Horizon Europe) funded ERC-2021-COG project “BICROSS – The Significance of Bilingual Manuscripts for Detecting Cross-Language Interaction in the New Testament Tradition”.

The interdisciplinary project investigates bilingual New Testament manuscripts from the 4th century to the 15th century and links Greek, Latin, Syriac, Coptic, Gothic, Armenian and Arabic philology, New Testament textual criticism, manuscript studies, ancient history and digital humanities.

Further information about each position and application details can be obtained through the following links. The deadline for applications is 27th October 2022.

Research Software Engineer (postdoctoral):

Postdoctoral Researcher:

PhD Scholar:

Assistant Professor in Art History

Rice University: School of Humanities: Art History

Houston, Texas


Nov 15, 2022 at 11:59 PM Eastern Time


The Department of Art History at Rice University invites applications for a tenure-track Assistant Professor position in the history of medieval art and/or architecture, broadly defined. We are interested in scholars working on art from roughly 400-1400, without restriction to culture or region. Successful candidates will have a record of publication and service commensurate with their career stage and be alert to diverse methodological approaches to the study of art and/or architecture from this period.

Scholars working within transcultural frameworks are particularly encouraged to apply, as are those whose work might intersect with that being done in interdisciplinary programs and centers at Rice, including (but not limited to) those in Medical Humanities, Medieval & Early Modern Studies, Environmental Studies, African and African American Studies, and the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality.

The department offers programs of study leading to both the BA and PhD degrees. The new hire will teach four courses each academic year, covering a range of topics from area surveys to graduate-level courses on specialized subjects of their choice. The hire will also supervise undergraduate independent studies and honors theses, and mentor doctoral students.

Scholarships Available: Horizon Europe: ACCESS ERC scheme, the ANR will fund up to 35 post-doctoral fellowships.

These post-doctoral contracts aim to support young researchers in the preparation of a first application for the ERC Starting Grant, in particular by enabling them to strengthen their CV.

The ACCESS ERC 2023 call is open only to disciplines in the humanities and social sciences.

The maximum aid allocated by the ANR is €170,000 (including environmental costs) for a period of two years, between July 1, 2023 and August 31, 2025.

More information on this call at this address:

Submissions to the Byzness / Oxford Listings

Those wishing to submit an event, call for papers, or a scholarship / job opportunity to either of our mailing lists, are invited to send relevant details to We circulate two mailing lists: (1) ‘The Byzness’, a newsletter of events and opportunities of relevance to scholars of the Byzantine and Late Antique worlds, circulated weekly in during the Oxford term and every two weeks outside of term, and (2) ‘The Oxford Listings’, covering the week’s events during the Oxford term, only circulated during term. Events should be brief, in third-person, and include all relevant information in the body of the notice. Outside of exceptional circumstances, we only share events once.