Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $19.00
  • Save: $4.26 (22%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 13 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
A Short History of Byzant... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Like New
Comment: Appears unread, crisp & clean, no marks. Fast shipping direct from Amazon!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

A Short History of Byzantium Paperback – December 29, 1998

4.2 out of 5 stars 121 customer reviews

See all 6 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$14.74
$3.98 $0.01

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
$14.74 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 13 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • A Short History of Byzantium
  • +
  • A History of Venice
Total price: $30.02
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The Byzantine Empire, one of its most eminent students reminds us, lasted "for a total of 1,123 years and 18 days," which is an astonishing duration matched by only a few others. Condensing Norwich's three-volume history, this overview captures the splendor and strangeness of Byzantine rule, marked by family intrigues, constant warfare, political and religious strife, and personal ambition--a "somewhat lurid background," as Norwich modestly declares in passing. Norwich is a master of the telling vignette. In one, he writes of imperial guards made up of "Anglo-Saxons who had left their country in disgust after Hastings and had taken service with Byzantium." Facing a Norman enemy in southern Italy, these Anglo-Saxons exacted terrible vengeance until the Normans rallied under the leadership of a fearless woman, one Sichelgaita, and massacred their enemy. Norwich's book abounds in similarly surprising and absorbing episodes. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

YA?A condensation of Norwich's three-volume study of the Byzantine Empire. It is the story of a civilization that flourished economically, militarily, and, most importantly, as a center for culture and the arts while the rest of Europe struggled through the Dark and Middle Ages. Despite the empire being the most powerful nation in Europe for over 1000 years, its history reads like a soap opera?with grand intrigue, despotic rulers, madmen, conquests, betrayals, religious schism, crusades, and eventual decline. The book is massive in scope and although every other ruler seems to be named either Constantine, Constantius, or Constans, the book is surprisingly easy to read. Detailed maps; charts showing the lineage of the major personalities; and lists of emperors, sultans, and popes help readers keep track of who was who and where the major events took place. An extensive index makes this book useful as a reference tool.?Robert Burnham, R. E. Lee High School, Springfield, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (December 29, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679772693
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679772699
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #258,608 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Important Information

Ingredients
Example Ingredients

Directions
Example Directions

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. A Forczyk VINE VOICE on June 7, 2000
Format: Hardcover
An excellent introduction to the Byzantium Empire. Unlike most works written by British historians, this is very readable and not stuffy. Although this book races across 1,000 years of history in about 400 pages, it does an excellent job of synopsis. The record is full of succession struggles, with the losers usually castrated or beheaded. It is amazing how much energy the Byzantines wasted on theological disputes that continually undermined the morale of the empire. Norwich clearly explains these important but complicated theological issues which ultimately shaped Byzantium's destiny. On the military side, Norwich minimizes the impact of the defeat at Manzikert in 1071 and instead stresses that the sack of Constantinople by the Crusaders, the depredations of the Catalonian mercenaries and the plague all did more real harm. Norwich could have had more detail on the Byzantine military and finances, both of which were crucial to the rise and decline of this great empire. The political drama of the continuous succession struggles is extremely well-told. Once readers complete this excellent introduction, they will be eager to read the original full-length three volume set.
2 Comments 80 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I began reading the Short History of Byzantium but soon became both frustrated and tantalized by the skipping-along-in-history that was necessary in order to condense a three-voume work into one. I have just purchased Volume I and am really enjoying it. I compared some passages between the two versions and found that, as I suspected, a lot of the material that made this history interesting and coherent had been left out in the condensation. It shouldn't take too much longer to read the whole thing, and you'll understand and remember a lot more.
1 Comment 44 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
A Short History of Byzantium is John Julius Norwich's abridgement of his 3 volume work. He begins his book with an apology for skimming so quickly over the surface and vows that he has left out nothing important (adding that if you want more detail, the three-volume version awaits you). I knew virtually nothing about this fascinating period of history. I found the book extremely informative, as well as quite lively and entertaining, with a fabulous cast of characters. My favorite was the wily Theodora, who rises from sex show performer to Empress of Byzantium. (I also liked it when characters I knew from other contexts made an appearance, such as Charlemagne and Eleanor of Aquitaine.) This book also gave me a much better understanding of such things as the crusades, the complex relationship between the Catholic Church, the Byzantine Church and the Byzantine state; and the rivalry between Venice and Genoa. Just as importantly the book has also made me curious about some other things. I'd really like to know more about the Ottoman Empire after reading A Short History of Byzantium.
Comment 26 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If the textbooks used in our school were written in the way A Short History of Byzantium was, history classes would have been more fun for each and everyone of us. Of course, this book is not without its flaws. The fast-paced narration would probably lose your attention for a second or two, but, when you think about the fact that it was a condensed version of a originally large three-volume work, you still have to give credits to the author for his successful attempts in keeping the essence of the whole subject. This book would have no problem serving as a good reference for history classes dealing with western civilization and alike. It also gives a pretty good insight into the theological conflicts during the time of late Roman empire and throughout the Byzantine era. The violent scenes of the early warfare were also well described.
It is not a large book and it does not provide every details you want to know about Byzantium. However, after reading the very last page, you can be sure that you will know a lot more about this christendom, unless you already are a specialist in the study of Byzantine.
Comment 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
_A Short History of Byzantium_ by John Julius Norwich was a well-written and comprehensive overview of largely the political history of the Byzantine Empire. At times the book felt a bit hurried as Emperor after Emperor rushed by, but then that is understandable given several facts. First, Norwich was covering the entire history of Byzantium, its 1,123 year lifespan from its founding as the Roman Empire of the East by Constantine the Great in 330 to its end when Constantine XI died fighting with his men the forces of the Turkish sultan Mehmet II in 1453. During that time 88 men and women occupied the imperial throne, some for very short periods of time. Second, this work is a condensed version of an earlier trilogy Norwich had written on the history of Byzantium, the three volumes titled _The Early Centuries_, _The Apogee_, and _The Decline and Fall_. At times one could feel that there was more to a particular story than the author was relating or that he could have gone into more detail but space in the 383 page book would not allow it. Still, it was a very useful and interesting introduction to an often popularly neglected period of world history.

The stars of the book are the rulers of the Byzantine Empire, the eighty-eight men and women as well as the seven rulers who usurped the throne during the Latin occupation as a result of the Fourth Crusade in 1204. They ranged across the spectrum of political rulers, from highly skilled diplomats to great generals to thugs and self-absorbed pleasure seekers and hedonists, from those dominated by bureaucrats to darlings of the military.
Read more ›
Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

A Short History of Byzantium
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: A Short History of Byzantium