Plucked from obscurity to become the wife of an emperor, Irene of Athens went on to become regent and empress in her own right. A ruthless strategist, an international diplomat, and an intelligent politician, she was also an influential participant in Byzantium’s early medieval controversy over icons, which some saw as threatening imperial power. This episode explores her life, reign, and historical reputation.
Byzantium & FriendsPodcast.
Paul Adam, Princesses Byzantines: La Très Pieuse Irène, Anne Comnène.
M.V. Anastos, “The Transfer of Illyricum, Calabria and Sicily to the Jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in 732-33.” Reprinted in Studies in Byzantine Intellectual History, IX:14-31.
Charles Diehl, Byzantine Empresses. Translated by Harold Bell and Theresa de Kerpely.
Judith Herrin, Byzantium: The Surprising Life of a Medieval Empire.
—————. Unrivaled Influence: Women and Empire in Byzantium.
Patricia Karlin-Hayter, “Iconoclasm,” in: The Oxford History of Byzantium, ed. Cyril Mango, 153-162.
Cyril Mango, Roger Scott, with Geoffrey Greatrex, trans. The Chronicle of Theophanes Confessor: Byzantine and Near Eastern History AD 284-813
Leonora Alice Neville, Guide to Byzantine Historical Writing.
John Julius Norwich, Byzantium: The Earliest Centuries.
Warren Treadgold, “The Struggle for Survival (641-780),” in: The Oxford History of Byzantium, ed. Cyril Mango, 129-152
Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod (www.incompetech.com)