The History of Byzantium
Episode 250 - Retaking Anatolia
We talk about why the Romans didn't have more success in fighting the Turks. Was there a better way to fight the nomads? Or was it not really about tactics but strategy?Period: 1070-1180
Episode 249 - Life in Byzantine Anatolia
We look around the Roman provinces in Anatolia to review their defensive situation and the lifestyle of its people. We also briefly talk about Turkic people who lived in Byzantium.
Episode 248 - Life in Turkic Anatolia
We take a look around the parts of Anatolia which were controlled by Turkic peoples between 1080 and 1180 AD. We don’t have a huge amount of written sources to draw on but hopefully there’s enough information available to give you a better picture of what’s been happening there. We also discuss the two different groups of Turkic peoples in Anatolia - the settled and the nomads.
August 2022 Update
On my last update I told you that because of my forthcoming fatherhood – I would be switching to a season by season format from now on. Where there are periods of silence followed by a run of episodes altogether. That is still the case. But I am making an exception for 3 episodes which I’m going to release now.This triptych of episodes covers life in Anatolia during the Komnenian century. What was life like for Romans living under Turkic rule? What was life like in Imperial territory and an analysis of the military situation.These episodes are really more connected to the reign of Manuel than they are to the narrative which follows. So I thought I’d release these now while the Komnenian century is still fresh in your memory. Then the feed will go quiet for a while till the narrative returns.
And the Winner is
Hello everyone, as you may remember our last episode was an interview with author Gordon Doherty. Gordon generously offered to give away a copy of his book – Strategos: Born in the Borderlands to one of you. We set a competition and a winner has been chosen. I will leave it to Gordon to tell you about the best entries he read and to announce the winner. I will just remind you all to check out https://www.gordondoherty.co.uk/ to learn more about his work.
Baby and New Schedule
I have big news. A History of Byzantium baby is on the way. The purple room in the Palace is being prepared for the Autumn and I can assure you that the names Justinian and Theodora will not be under consideration. Of course I’m very excited. But it means I think we need to change the way the podcast is scheduled. I plan on being as involved as possible during the first few months of my baby’s life. And so it won’t be possible to keep a normal podcast routine. So what we’re going to do is switch to a sort of TV schedule. Where there is silence for a few months and then I will release a complete series of episodes. So that when the podcast is on air, so to speak, you know that it will be out every week without fail and that whatever period of narrative we’re in will reach a natural conclusion. This will include bonus episodes for those who subscribe over at Patreon.I feel more comfortable switching to this new schedule thanks to Patreon. It means that those of you who kindly support the show can manage your subscriptions however you see fit. And if you’re still in any doubt about how Patreon works - you can pick up a subscription or cancel one any time you like. There is no contract or commitment. And when you resubscribe you get your benefits back instantly. We’re going to switch to this new schedule immediately. So there will now be a period of silence before a run of episodes that will take us from the death of Manuel through to the sack of Constantinople in 1204. I won’t be announcing any dates for this new schedule. The periods of silence will take as long as they take and then there will be loads of episodes in a row to enjoy. It will be an adjustment for all of us but I think it’s for the best. I have pushed myself hard in the past to try and produce the podcast weekly and to leave as few gaps as possible and it can cause a lot of stress. History podcasting just does take a long time. Some topics take weeks to research. And the more I read the better the show gets. I’m hoping this new schedule will make life easier for you and for me. Thank you for your patience and for your support.
Episode 247 - Writing Byzantine Fiction with Gordon Doherty
I talk to historical fiction author Gordon Doherty about his Byzantine book series 'Strategos.' We talk about inspiration and research but also what advice he'd give to aspiring writers.We also give you the chance to win a copy of the first book in the Strategos trilogy.Find out more about Gordon and his other book series (including more Roman era stories) at his website.
Episode 246 - Travelling to Turkey with Şerif Yenen
While I'm away on the third 'History of Byzantium' tour I thought it was time to talk to the man behind them - Şerif Yenen. Şerif has been a tour guide in Istanbul for decades and has published many excellent books on the subject. He has also gone online to share his love for travel through podcasts and Youtube videos. I talk to Serif about his career and ask him listener questions about what to do and see in Turkey.Contact me if you'd like to be on the mailing list for future 'History of Byzantium' tours.Check out Şerif's Youtube channel and his podcast 'Turkish Odyssey.' Or visit his website to find out more about his books, lectures and tours around Turkey.