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Ideological Transformation And The Evolution Of Imperial Presentation In The Wake Of Islam’s Victory

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Chapter Summary

The trauma of so many disasters, including the loss of Jerusalem and two sieges of Constantinople by the Arabs, and seemingly miraculous ability of the Empire to survive them, was no where better expressed than in evolution of Roman, or perhaps, Byzantine, political discourse. This chapter discusses the impact that the Arab invasions had on ideological and institutional roles of the imperial office in seventh century, and implications of these developments for the great political and religious conflict of iconoclasm. It demonstrates the impact of the Arab invasions on Christian Roman discourse of imperial authority accompanied an institutional transformation of the imperial office that enhanced its sacerdotal claims eventually creating political conditions in which emperors could claim sufficient ecclesiastical authority to impose restrictions on Christian ritual. Even the Romans’ remarkable ability to ignore political realities when deploying rhetorical figures could not overlook the disasters that followed the victories of Islam.

Keywords: Arab invasions; Byzantine political discourse; Christian ritual; Constantinople; ideological transformation; imperial authority; Islam’s victory; Jerusalem

10.1163/ej.9789004149380.i-338.10
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004149380.i-338.10
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