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BY any measure, the cultural transformation of Hellenistic Asia Minor -- which saw the Turkish language supplant the Greek, and most of the peninsula's Chalcedonian Christians comply with the maxim cuius regio eius religio* and become Muslims -- was a process of enormous proportions. At the beginning of the 11th century, this principal province of the Byzantine Empire was both populous and productive, and seemingly secure after surviving the Arab intrusions of the 7th-9th centuries. As possibly the most intensively Christianized region of the late ancient world, it was also religiously pre-eminent: 'a spiritual reservoir of Byzantine society', in the tight embrace of the intricately structured Orthodox Church, whose 'vast ecclesiastical bureaucracy' paralleled the civil bureaucracy of the government in Constantinople. But by the end of the 15th century, the region had been so thoroughly appropriated by Turkish invaders/settlers from Central Asia, who arrived via Khurasan after about 1040, that only a 'residue' of the Hellenistic civilization remained. This was evident in such phenomena as Byzantine agrarian practices, idiosyncrasies of domestic architecture, loan words in the language of Turkish rural life, and a 'syncretization of the old and new elements (of religion), at the lower levels of society', which manifested itself, at times, in a highly heterodox Islam.
This study, in which the author adopts the perspective of a social anthropologist, rather than of a historian, is thus an examination and analysis of 'the last great...contraction of Hellenism', which ended more than a millennium of cultural domination of West Asia by the Greeks, and returned their civilizing mission to its point of departure in the southern Balkans.Read more ›
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This book's Kindle edition has obviously not been proofread by a human being. It's full of typos, nonsensical paragraph breaks, problems with spacing and a dozen of other annoying errors that you would get when you just machine-convert a pdf file and not bother to actually check the output. Even a brief glance would have made these issues obvious. I admit I should have checked Look Inside section, but this kind amateurism was absolutely something I was not expecting from a company like Amazon.