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The Chronicle of Theophanes: Anni mundi 6095-6305 (A.D. 602-813) (The Middle Ages Series) Paperback – September 1, 1982


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The Chronicle of Theophanes: Anni mundi 6095-6305 (A.D. 602-813) (The Middle Ages Series) + The History (Dumbarton Oaks Medieval Library)
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Product Details

  • Series: The Middle Ages Series
  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press; n edition (September 1, 1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812211286
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812211283
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #654,145 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English, Greek (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

Harry Turtledove has taught at the University of California, Los Angeles, and at California State University at Fullerton.

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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Florentius VINE VOICE on December 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
This excerpt from the Chronicle of Theophanes is a useful work covering a period in Late Roman/Early Byzantine history where the primary source material is scanty at best. Indeed, for the period covered here between AD 602 and AD 813, Theophanes is, sadly, the best we've got.

This portion of the chronicle sheds light on the eventful reigns of Heraclius, Justinian II, Leo III, Constantine V, and the Empress Irene, among others. It details the conquest of much of the Roman east by the forces of Islam, as well as the on-again-off-again Iconoclastic convulsions of the 8th century. Aside from a few minor typos, the translation seems to be readable and well-executed.

My only minor quibble is that the translator does not give any indication of the criticisms historians commonly reserve for Theophanes--that his chronology is sometimes strangely inaccurate, as if to fill up the years where his sources had little data, he simply moved in passages from other years.

Regardless, this is a valuable historical work and Turtledove is to be commended for making it available in a form that allows general readers easy access to it.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By llywrch on March 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
I own an earlier paperback printing. The book was originally published in 1982.

Turtledove's translation is clear & simple, avoiding the affected 19th-century diction some translators slip into. One topic the Editorial Review above overlooks is that Theophanes provides a rather coherent account of the Islamic conquest of the Middle East & North Africa. If you are interested in the history of the Byzantine Empire, this is one primary source you should own.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kirialax on April 29, 2009
Format: Paperback
Harry Turtledove has done a good job translating this snippet of Theophanes. The translation is crisp and most of the transliterations are well done. Occasionally some modern colloquialism sneaks in, but it is usually minor. Turtledove does an excellent job in rendering Greek wordplay and puns into English, and the fact that he cites it in the footnotes just goes to improve this edition.

Nonetheless, this edition isn't perfect. The issue of length may lie with the publisher, as Penn Press has similarly sized editions of the Strategikon and Gunther of Paris' history. Starting at Phokas doesn't provide the reader enough background, and while the text from Phokas on may be the only historically valuable part, would it have been so hard to add the reign of Maurikios? Additionally, the notes occasionally aren't all that useful or critical. While they often describe transliterated Greek terms, they are not sufficient to make this the standard edition of Theophanes. It's value lies in its availability and afford-ability, something that the Mango text cannot claim.
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