A Tale of Two Saints

BookA Tale of Two Saints

A Tale of Two Saints

The Martyrdoms and Miracles of Saints Theodore 'the Recruit' and 'the General'

Translated Texts for Byzantinists, 2


April 27th, 2016

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Hagiographical writing, including the Lives of saints and martyrs and collections of their miracles, were one of the most popular, perhaps the most popular form of literature accessible to ordinary people in the medieval world. St. Theodore ‘the Recruit’ was one of the best-known of the so-called ‘military saints’ or ‘soldier saints’, particularly in the medieval eastern Roman, or Byzantine, and the eastern Christian world, where churches dedicated to him were to be found in towns, cities and in the countryside. While the cult of St. Theodore has been studied in the context of hagiographical writing and from the perspective of his representation in medieval art, this is the first translation into a modern language of any of the Greek texts connected with St Theodore. Ranging in date from the fifth to the eleventh century CE, five accounts of the martyrdom of the saint together with two sets of miracles have been selected, texts that testify to the growth and to the evolution of the martyrdoms and miracle collections associated with him. St Theodore ‘the Recruit’ had a senior partner, St Theodore ‘the General’ who first appears in the ninth century and reflects the tastes and demands of middle Byzantine élite society.
With a detailed introduction that examines the structure of the texts and their historical development, this volume also situates them in the context of recent archaeological work at Roman Euchaïta, the centre of the cult in Anatolia.


Author Information

John Haldon is Shelby Cullom Davis ’30 Professor of European History, emeritus and Professor of Byzantine History & Hellenic Studies, emeritus, Princeton University. He is Director, Climate Change and History Research Initiative and Director, Environmental History Lab, Program in Medieval Studies, Princeton University. His many books include: Byzantium in the iconoclast era, 680-850. A history (CUP 2011) (with L. Brubaker); A critical commentary on the Taktika of Leo VI (Dumbarton Oaks 2014); A Tale of Two Saints: The Passions and Miracles of Sts Theodore ‘the recruit’ and ‘the general’ (LUP 2016) and The empire that would not die. The paradox of eastern Roman survival 640-740 (Harvard University Press 2016).

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
1. Introduction15
St Theodore ‘the Recruit’15
St Theodore ‘the General’20
St Theodore ‘the Recruit’ and Euchaïta27
2. The texts34
Context: martyrdoms and miracles34
The martyrdom accounts: date and development37
The miracle collections57
3. Translations72
Text 1: BHG 1765c, ed. Sigalas 1921: 50–79; Delehaye 1925a: 55–7272
Text 2: BHG 1761, ed. Delehaye 1909: 127–135; 1925: 29–3997
Text 3: BHG 1765, ed. Sigalas 1925: 225–226; Delehaye 1925a: 45–46104
Text 4: BHG 1764, ed. Delehaye 1909: 183–201; 1925: 49–55106
Text 5: BHG 1752, ed. Delehaye 1909: 168–182126