Iconoclasm, the debate about the legitimacy of religious art in Byzantium during the eighth and early ninth centuries, has long gripped the historical imagination. This book reinterprets the history of the period, challenges many traditional assumptions about iconoclasm, and sets it firmly in its broader political, cultural and social-economic context.
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'This is the most important book on Byzantium to appear in my lifetime. The authors admirably fulfil their stated intention to discuss political recovery and institutional reshaping, the final stages in the evolution of eastern Orthodox dogma, the emergence of a new political and social elite, the transformation of urban life and also urban-rural relations, and the generation of a new 'medieval' perspective on the past.' Thomas F. X. Noble, Journal of Interdisciplinary HistoryVom Verlag:
Iconoclasm, the debate about the legitimacy of religious art that began in Byzantium around 720 and continued for nearly one hundred and twenty years, has long held a firm grip on the historical imagination. This is the first book in English for over fifty years to survey this most elusive and fascinating period in medieval history. It is also the first book in any language to combine the expertise of two authors who are specialists in the written, archaeological and visual evidence from this period, a combination of particular importance to the iconoclasm debate. The authors have worked together to provide a comprehensive overview of the visual, written and other materials that together help clarify the complex issues of iconoclasm in Byzantium. In doing so they challenge many traditional assumptions about iconoclasm and set the period firmly in its broader political, cultural and social-economic context.
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