Monks and monasteries in Constantinople : (fourth to ninth centuries)
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This dissertation investigates the changes in the legal, economic and political status as well as the topographical location of the monasteries in Constantinople between the fourth and the ninth centuries. Roughly from the late fourth up until the end of the sixth century, there was a gradual increase in the number of monasteries. This trend was counterweighted by almost complete silence in the sources throughout the seventh and the eighth centuries. The ninth century, however, constituted a return to the trend of the early centuries. Monks and monasteries "returned" to the city with a vengeance. This "return" was inevitably linked to the prevailing conditions during the previous centuries marked by, first, the final decline of the late Roman world and its institutions, and second, the Iconoclast controversy in Byzantium between the early eighth and the mid-ninth centuries. Overall, following primarily the evidence preserved in the vitae and the acts of the councils, one can conclude that, by the end of the ninth century, the integration of the monks into Byzantine society was complete. The monasteries had become an integral part of Constantinople and its Christian topography.
Thesis, MPhil Master of Philosophy
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