Bulgaria, the Bulgarians and Europe - Myth, History, Modernity
“ST. CYRIL AND ST. METHODIUS” UNIVERSITY OF VELIKO TARNOVO - UNIVERSITY PRESS

Monks and Churchmen among the Military Elite of 11th – century Byzantium – Analysis of the Motives and the Consequences of Taking the Monastic Habit


Authors:
Symeon Antonov

Pages: -

Abstract:

The current paper studies certain cases of military men becoming monks in the complex political and social setting of the 11th c. This decision was either forced by circumstances such as losing the throne, failure in rebellions and usurpations, changes in the political regime, etc. – things that most major sources of the period give plenty of attention to; or voluntary – predisposed by severe illness, old age or sheer faith. The persons from the military elite made not exception among the Byzantine ruling class. For them the monastery was a safe haven in case of uncertainty or overt threat. It was also the place where one could find peace and increase his chances of salvation in the afterlife.

Keywords:

Byzantium in the 11th century, military elite, monastic habit, monastery.

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