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Margins and MetropolisAuthority across the Byzantine Empire$
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Judith Herrin

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691153018

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691153018.001.0001

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Aspects of the Process of Hellenization in the Early Middle Ages

Aspects of the Process of Hellenization in the Early Middle Ages

(p.33) 2 Aspects of the Process of Hellenization in the Early Middle Ages
Margins and Metropolis

Judith Herrin

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the inherent forces that remained to sustain medieval Hellenism in the early Middle Ages. It discusses two aspects to the hellenization process that was at work in parts of the Balkan peninsula during the “Dark Ages” of Byzantine history, each helping to preserve distinct parts of the Hellenistic tradition: the continued use of spoken Greek, and the preservation of Byzantine political, cultural, and religious practices. In both cases, the agents of this process were the indigenous population of Greece, who sought refuge from the Slavs on Aegean islands, in mountain fortresses, and along the littoral. The chapter shows that despite the “grande brèche” in continuous imperial rule, the inhabitants of Greece were able to reassert their identity as citizens of the empire of Constantinople.

Keywords:   hellenization, Hellenism, Middle Ages, Greece, Constantinople, Balkan peninsula, Dark Ages, spoken Greek, Slavs, indigenous population

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