A History Of The Later Roman Empire : From Arcadius To Irene (395 A.D. to 800 A.D.) (1889) by Bury, John Bagnell (1861–1927)
"There is no period of history which has been so much obscured by incorrect and misleading titles as the period of the later Roman Empire. It is, I believe, more due to improper names than one might at first be disposed to admit, that the import of that period is so constantly misunderstood and its character so often misrepresented. For the first step towards grasping the history of those centuries through which the ancient evolved into the modern world is the comprehension of the fact that the old Roman Empire did not cease to exist until the year 1453. The line of Roman Emperors continued in unbroken succession from Octavius Augustus to Constantine Palaeologus." (Preface)
Volume 1: https://archive.org/details/b29353300_0001/page/n5
Volume 2: https://archive.org/details/b29353300_0002/page/n5
The Last Cæsars Of Byzantium (1891) by Todière, Louis (1804–????)
"I offer to the public a volume which may derive interest from the present attitude of Russia and Turkey in regard to each other, and from the great Russian-Turkish question which now claims the attention of every European Government. It contains a simple narrative of the events which agitated the Byzantine empire, from the accession of the Palaeologi to the conquest of Greece by the Ottomans. I have endeavored to trace, together with the rapid progress of the Turks, the decline of the Greeks, whilst province after province is subjugated, and one by one cities are snatched from their grasp, until at last the fall of the capital dealt the fatal blow to that power which had ruled for so many centuries." (Author's Preface)
The Byzantine Empire, The Rearguard of European Civilisation (1911) by Foord, Edward (????–????)
"THIS volume is an attempt to supply the need of a short popular history of the Later Roman Empire. There is at present, I believe, no book on the subject in the English language between Professor Oman’s sketch in the ‘ Story of the Nations ’ series and monumental works like those of Gibbon, Finlay, and Bury. The Early Middle Age of Europe has always had a fascination for me, and on the wonderful story of the ‘Byzantine’ Empire I have concentrated much attention. When, therefore, Mr. Gordon Home broached the idea of the present volume, I readily undertook the task, believing that a knowledge of what was required, combined with a real enthusiasm for my subject, might enable me to produce a book which would fill the gap." (Preface)
A History Of The Eastern Roman Empire, From The Fall Of Irene To The Accession Of Basil I (A.D. 802-867) (1912) by Bury, John Bagnell (1861–1927)
"The history of Byzantine civilization, in which social elements of the West and the East are so curiously blended and fused into a unique culture, will not be written for many years to come. It cannot be written until each successive epoch has been exhaustively studied and its distinguishing characteristics clearly ascertained. The fallacious assumption, once accepted as a truism, that the Byzantine spirit knew no change or shadow of turning, that the social atmosphere of the Eastern Eome was always immutably the same, has indeed been discredited ; hut even in recent sketches of this civilization by competent hands we can see unconscious survivals of that belief. The curve. of the whole development has still to be accurately traced, and this can only be done by defining each section by means of the evidence which' applies to that section alone. No other method will enable us to discriminate the series of gradual changes which transformed the Byzantium of Justinian into that—so different in a thousand ways—of the last Constantine.
This consideration has guided me in writing the present volume, which continues, but on a larger scale, my History of the Later Boman Empire from Arcadius to Irene, published more than twenty years ago, and covers a period of two generations, which may be called for the sake of convenience the Amorian epoch." (Preface)
The Byzantine Empire (1926) by Baynes, Norman Hepburn (1877–1961)
History Οf Τhe Byzantine Empire, 324–1453 (1952) by Vasiliev, Alexander Alexandrovich (1867–1953)
Constantinople: Birth Of An Empire (1957) by Lamb, Harold (1892–1962)
"This is the story of a city built by survivors. As often happens in a great disaster, these survivors were not one people ethnically, but a fusion of many peoples. They gathered together to defend not so much their lives and property as their way of life. In so doing they displayed a certain perversity; they refused to surrender their city. They kept on refusing for nearly a thousand years. History has named them the Byzantines.
They were alone in their survival. In the West a long twilight fell on the Roman Empire during the centuries between a.d. 200 and 450. It ended in the darkness of the first Middle Age. In the East, however, the inhabitants of this city learned the hard lessons of disaster, and they managed to hold back the night.
Their city bore many names, including Constantinople and the Guarded City, before it became known to everyone as Byzantium. Like its people, it had a certain peculiarity. It lay on a small promontory between the tideless inland seas, where the three continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa came closest together. Ancient caravan routes tended toward it, and great rivers led away from it. So the waters that gave access to the hinterlands of the continents also served to protect the point of land on which Constantinople stood. Probably nowhere else could the ancient civilization of the Mediterranean have been preserved.
Its preservation was the work of many men through long lifetime spans. Our story is concerned with one century, the sixth century of Our Lord. The greater part of this time is known for good reason as the Age of Justinian. It was by no means a so-called golden age; it was shaped by intense effort to hold to values in human life. Out of that effort came something unforeseen, and too little understood until now.
The men of Constantinople managed to change the twilight on their horizon into the dawn of a new age, the dawn before the light of modern times. We are the heirs, not of a glory of Greece and a grandeur of Rome, but of their effort in that city between the seas fourteen centuries ago." (Foreword)
The Byzantines (1959) by Chubb, Thomas Caldecot (1899–1972)
Suggest and discuss books to read (all languages welcome!)
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