Slike stranica

with variegated hangings1 and purple and silver ornaments. The long Middle Street, through which the triumphal train would pass, from the Golden Gate of victory to the place of the Augusteon, was strewn with flowers. The prisoners, the trophies and the spoils of war preceded the Emperor, who rode on a white horse caparisoned with jewelled harness; a tiara was on his head; he wore a sceptre in his hand, and a goldembroidered tunic framed his breastplate.2 Beside him, on another white steed similarly equipped, rode the Caesar Alexios, wearing a corslet, sleeves, and gaiters of gold, a helmet and gold headband, and poising a golden spear. At a short distance from the triumphal gate the Emperor dismounted and made three obeisances to the east, and, when he crossed the threshold of the city, the Praepositus, the Magister, and the Prefect, now relieved of their extraordinary authority, presented him with a crown of gold, which he carried on his right arm. The demes then solemnly acclaimed him as victor, and the procession advanced. When it reached the milestone at the gates of the Augusteon, the senators dismounted, except those who, having taken part in the campaign, wore their armour, and, passing through the gates, walked in front of the sovran to the Well of St. Sophia. Here the Emperor himself dismounted, entered the church, and, after a brief devotion, crossed the Augusteon on foot to the Bronze Gate of the Palace, where a pulpit had been set, flanked by a throne of gold, and a golden organ which was known as the Prime Miracle.s Between these stood a large cross of gold. When Theophilus had seated himself and made the sign of the cross, the demes cried, "There is one Holy." The city community then offered him a pair of golden armlets, and wearing these he acknowledged the gift by a speech," in which he described his military successes. Amid new acclamations he remounted his horse, and riding through the Passages of Achilles and past the Baths of Zeuxippus, entered the Hippodrome and reached the Palace at the door of the Skyla. On the next


1 σκαραμάγγια.

2 πiλρiкov (cp. Ducange, s.v. λωρίκη). The tunic was ῥοδόβοτρυς : does this mean that the design represented roses and bunches of grapes?

3 πρωτόθαυμα.

4 τὸ πολίτευμα, the whole body of the citizens of the capital, of whom the prefect of the city was the "father." He and his subordinates were the πολιτάρχαι.

5 Delivered evidently from the pul


day, at a reception in the Palace, many honours and dignities were conferred, and horse-races were held in the Hippodrome, where the captives and the trophies were exhibited to the people.

§ 2. Buildings of Theophilus

The reign of Theophilus was an epoch in the history of the Great Palace. He enlarged it by a group of handsome and curious buildings, on which immense sums must have been expended, and we may be sure that this architectural enterprise was stimulated, if not suggested, by the reports which reached his ears of the magnificent palaces which the Caliphs had built for themselves at Baghdad.1 His own pride and the prestige of the Empire demanded that the residence of the Basileus should not be eclipsed by the splendour of the Caliph's abode.

At the beginning of the ninth century the Great Palace consisted of two groups of buildings-the original Palace, including the Daphne, which Constantine the Great had built adjacent to the Hippodrome and to the Augusteon, and at some distance to the south-east the Chrysotriklinos (with its dependencies), which had been erected by Justin II. and had superseded the Daphne as the centre of Court life and ceremonial. It is probable that the space between the older Palace and the Chrysotriklinos was open ground, free from buildings, perhaps laid out in gardens and terraced (for the ground falls southward). There was no architectural connexion between the two Palaces, but Justinian II. at the end of the seventh century had connected the Chrysotriklinos with the Hippodrome by means of two long halls which opened into one another-the Lausiakos and the Triklinos called after his name. These halls were probably perpendicular to the Hippodrome, and formed a line of building which closed in the principal grounds of the Palace on the southern side.3

1 See below, Chap. VIII. § 2. 2 Palace suggests to us a single block of building, and is so far misleading, though it can hardly be avoided. The Byzantine residence resembled the oriental "palaces" which consisted of many detached halls and buildings in large grounds. Compare, for instance, the residence of the Heian Emperors


of Japan at Kyoto, described by F. Brinkley, Japan, its History, Arts, and Literature, vol. i. 198-199 (1901).

3 The eastern door of the Lausiakos faced the western portico of the Chrysotriklinos; its western door opened into the Triklinos of Justinian, on the west of which was the Skyla which opened into the Hippodrome.


It is probable that the residence of Constantine bore some resemblance in design and style to the house of Diocletian at Spalato and other mansions of the period. The descriptions of the octagonal Chrysotriklinos show that it was built under the influence of the new style of ecclesiastical architecture which was characteristic of the age of Justinian. The chief group of buildings which Theophilus added introduced a new style and marked a third epoch in the architectural history of the Great Palace. Our evidence makes it clear that they were situated between the Constantinian Palace on the northwest and the Chrysotriklinos on the south-east.2


These edifices were grouped round the Trikonchos or Triple Shell, the most original in its design and probably that on which Theophilus prided himself most. It took its name from the shell-like apses, which projected on three sides, the larger on the east, supported on four porphyry 3 pillars, the others (to south and north) on two. This triconch plan was long known at Constantinople, whither it had been imported from Syria; it was distinctively oriental. On the west side a silver door, flanked by two side doors of burnished bronze, opened into a hall which had the shape of a half moon and was hence called the Sigma. The roof rested on fifteen columns of many-tinted marble.* But these halls were only the upper storeys of the Trikonchos and the Sigma. The ground-floor of the Trikonchos 5 had, like the room above it, three apses, but differently oriented. The northern side of this hall was known as the Mysterion or Place of Whispers, See my Great Palace in B.Z. xx. (1911), where I have shown that Labarte's assumption that the Lausiakos was perpendicular to the Triklinos of Justinian is not justified and has entailed many errors. It has been adopted by Paspates and Ebersolt and has not been rejected by Bieliaev. That the line of these buildings was perpendicular to the Hippodrome cannot be strictly proved. It is bound up with the assumption that the eastwest orientation of the Chrysotriklinos was perpendicular to the axis of the Hippodrome.

I See Ebersolt, Le Grand Palais, 160 sqq., whose plan of the Constantinian palace, however, cannot be maintained; cp. my criticisms, op. cit.

2 Cont. Th. 139 sqq. gives the de

tailed description of the buildings. Their situation is determined by combining the implications in this account with data in the ceremonial descriptions in Cer. I have shown (op. cit.) that the Trikonchos was north of the Chrysotriklinos (not west as it is placed by Labarte, Ebersolt, etc.).

3 So-called "Roman" stone, really Egyptian (Cont. Th. 327): red porphyry with white spots (Anna Comnena, vii. 2, ed. Reifferscheid, i. p. 230). Cp. Ebersolt, 111.

4 From Dokimion in Phrygia, near Synnada. The stone in these quarries presents shades of "violet and white, yellow, and the more familiar brecciated white and rose-red" (Lethaby and Swainson, Sancta Sophia, 238).

5 Known as the Tetraseron.

because it had the acoustic property, that if you whispered in the eastern or in the western apse, your words were heard distinctly in the other. The lower storey of the Sigma, to which you descended by a spiral staircase, was a hall of nineteen columns which marked off a circular corridor. Marble incrustations in many colours formed the brilliant decoration of the walls of both these buildings. The roof of the Trikonchos was gilded.


The lower part of the Sigma, unscreened on the western side, opened upon a court which was known as the Mystic Phiale of the Trikonchos. In the midst of this court stood a bronze fountain phiale with silver margin, from the centre of which sprang a golden pine-cone.2 Two bronze lions, whose gaping mouths poured water into the semicircular area of the Sigma, stood near that building. The ceremony of the saximodeximon, at which the racehorses of the Hippodrome were reviewed by the Emperor, was held in this court; the Blues and Greens sat on tiers of steps of white Proconnesian marble,3 and a gold throne was placed for the monarch. On the occasion of this and other levées, and certain festivals, the fountain was filled with almonds and pistacchio nuts, while the cone offered spiced wine to those who wished.


Passing over some minor buildings, we must notice the hall of the Pearl, which stood to the north of the Trikonchos. Its roof rested on eight columns of rose-coloured marble, the floor was of white marble variegated with mosaics, and the walls were decorated with pictures of animals. The same building contained a bed-chamber, where Theophilus slept in

1 ἐκ λακαρικῶν παμποικίλων (Cont. Th. 140).

2 στροβίλιον. Fountains in the form of pine-cones seem to have been common. There were two in the court of the New Church founded by Basil I. (Cont. Th. 327), and representations occur often in Byzantine art. Such a fountain has been recognised in the Theodora mosaic of St. Vitale at Ravenna. See Strzygovski, "Die Pinienzapfen als Wasserspeier," in Mittheilungen des d. arch. Instituts, Rom, xviii. 185 sqq. (1903), where the subject is amply illustrated, and it is shown that the idea is oriental. The pinecone occurs in Assyrian ornament, and

is used symbolically in the Mithraic cult. Strzygovski argues that, a symbol of fruitfulness in Assyria and Persia, it was taken by the Christians to symbolize fructification by the divine spirit, and he explains (p. 198) the name "mystic Phiale" in this sense.

3 These avaẞá@pai were on the west side of the Phiale (perhaps also on north and south), as we may infer from Cont. Th. 1434.

4 κονδῖτος.

5 The Pyxites and another building to the west, and the Eros (a museum of arms), near the Phiale steps, to the north, of the Sigma.

summer; its porticoes faced east and south, and the walls and roof displayed the same kind of decoration as the Pearl. To the north of this whole group, and fronting the west,1 rose the Karianos, a house which the Emperor destined as a residence for his daughters, taking its name from a flight of steps of Carian marble, which seemed to flow down from the entrance like a broad white river.


In another quarter (perhaps to the south of the Lausiakos) the Emperor laid out gardens and constructed shelters or sunneries," if this word may be permitted as a literal rendering of héliaka. Here he built the Kamilas, an apartment2 whose roof glittered with gold, supported by six columns of the green marble of Thessaly. The walls were decorated with a dado of marble incrustation below, and above with mosaics representing on a gold ground people gathering fruit. On a lower floor was a chamber which the studious Emperor Constantine VII. afterwards turned into a library, and a breakfast-room, with walls of splendid marble and floor adorned with mosaics. Near at hand two other houses, similar yet different, attested the taste of Theophilus for rich schemes of decoration. One of these was remarkable for the mosaic walls in which green trees stood out against a golden sky. The lower chamber of the other was called the Musikos, from the harmonious blending of the colours of the marble plaques with which the walls were covered-Egyptian porphyry, white Carian, and the green riverstone of Thessaly, while the variegated floor produced the effect of a flowering meadow.*

If the influence of the luxurious art of the East is apparent in these halls and pavilions which Theophilus added to his chief residence, a new palace which his architect Patrikes built on the Bithynian coast was avowedly modelled on the palaces of Baghdad. It was not far from the famous

1 The Karianos faced the Church of the Lord (Cont. Th. 139), which was in the extreme north of the palace grounds, near to the south-east corner of the Augusteon and to the gate leading into the grounds of the Magnaura.

2 The Kamilas and the two adjacent houses are described as cubicula (Cont. Th. 144).

3 μeσóταтоv, not the ground-floor, but the entresol (as Ebersolt renders, 116). From here one had, through a Kλouẞlov, railing or balustrade (cancelli, cp. Ducange, s. v. kλoßós), a view of the Chrysotriklinos.

4 The Musikos had only two walls, east and north; on the other sides it was columned and open (Cont. Th. 146). It was thus a hêliakon.

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