Slike stranica


[ocr errors]

army of eastern fugitives, to whom his descent and knowledge of their language naturally recommended him. But the attachment of the soldiers to Theophobos was possibly based on a higher and transcendent claim.

The Hurramites cherished the firm belief that a Mahdi or Guide of their own race would appear who would guide them to faith in himself, would transmit his Empire to another, to be followed by a perpetual line of successors.

Such a divine leader had recently arisen amongst them, but he was caught and executed. If Theophobos was recognised as his successor, we should understand both the ascendency which he exercised over them, and the motive of the legends which grew up about his origin. But the fact which suggests this explanation is the belief current among the “ Persians” in later generations that Theophobos had never tasted death.”

The foreigners had come to Sinope, having evidently followed the coast road by Trapezus, as they could not pass through the Saracen province of Melitene. Quarters were assigned to them here and at Amustris, but some years later they seized their commander and proclaimed him Emperor against his will (A.D. 837). Theophobos, whose services had been rewarded by the rank of patrician and the hand of a lady who was sister either to Theophilus himself or to Theodora,was a loyal subject, and he managed to send a If so, Theopholsos must have been a Gon. 64). The tale that the Persians most distinguished and important becamo aware of his existence, by ligure in the Babek movenient, other. astrology or otherwise, and wanted to wino he woull hardly have married muko him their king, is connected into the Emperor's family; and wo with the part he played in the negoti. should expect to find him mentioned ations with Babek ; it is quite probin our Oriental sources. His Greek able that he went as envoy to Babek nime, his orthodoxy, on which tho in Armenia, though in Gen. and Corit. chroniclers compliment him, und the Th, the personal interview is at Sinope. trust reposed in him by Theophilus, (The imjirobable statement that Babek all suggest that he was a Byzantine came himself to Sinope is rejected by subject und Imperial officer; and the Finlay and Vasil'ev.) Yet this is stories preservo the finct that he was harily a sullicient mulig for the legendhorn und educated at Constantinople. ary anecdotes, which would, I think, Theso stories were based on the threo be accounted for by the conjecturu circumstances that he was a citizen of which I have veutured to put forward the Empire, that he belonged to u in the text. " Persiun" family, and that he was · Michaol Syr. 50. For the lur: appointed commander of the Hurram. ramitos (Kopud to)seo also Weil, ites. They let out the circumstance ii. 235. that his father (who may have been 2 Gen. 60. the first of the l'amily to settle in 3 Simeon (Adul. Gcorg. 793) says Byzantium) served in the Imperial "a' sister of Theodora"; Gen. 55= army ('Ρωμαίων όντα τους καταλόγους, Cont. Th. 112, says “the sister of the

[ocr errors]

secret message to the Einperor. Theophilus pardoned the troops, but took the precaution of distributing them among the armies of various Themes, in regiments of 2000, which were known as “the Persian turms."

We may pulss brietly over the incugre details of the warfare during the next three years, noticing only the sack of Zapetra by Theophilus (A.D. 830), his victory in Cilicia (A.D. 831) which le celebrated by a triumphal entry into Constantinople, and the Saracen capture of the important fortress of Lulon. But we may linger longer over the overtures for peace which Theophilus addressed to the Caliphi

. Defented in a battle, in the autumn of A.D. 831,. the Emperor wished for peace and from his camp he sent an ecclesiastic with a letter to Mamun. The Caliph received him in his camp," but on observing the superscription of the letter, he returned it to the envoy saying “I will not read his letter, which he begins with his own name.” The ambassador l'etraced his steps, and Theophilus was compelled to rewrite his epistle and place the name of the Caliph before his own. The story may be an insolent invention of the Saracens,s but it is certain that Mamun rejected the offers of Theophilus who proposed to give him 100,000 dinars and 7000 captives, if he would restore the fortresses which he had conquered and conclude a peace for five years.

The time of the summer campaign, however, had drawn to a close, and Mamun retired into his own territories (September).

The capture of Lulon after a long siege was an important success for the arms of Mamun. The value of this fortress, the key to the northern entrance of the Cilician Gates, has Emperor" (of whom otherwise we do outside of the docuntent, while the not hear). Against Simeon is the Emperor's name came first inside. If detailed notice of the family of Theo- this style was usual before the time of dora in Cont. Th. 175, where the wife Theophilus, his secretary corımitted of Theophobos is not mentioned. a breach of etiquette. The forms of

The details discussed in address used in the tenth century Appendix VIII.

were : outside, tý veyador percoTÁTY Yakubi, 7, designates the envoy ευγενεστάτη και περιβλέπτη (usine) us a bishop. See below, Appendix VIII. πρωτοσυμβούλων και διατάκτορι των

* It is possible, however, that the 'Αγαρηνών από (nanie) του πιστού αυτοCaliph was only insisting on a recog. κράτορος Αυγούστου μεγάλου βασιλέως uisci convention. In the tenth cen- 'Pwuaiwr. Inside : (namo) motOS er tury it was the official style of the Χριστώ τω θεώ αυτοκράτωρ Αύγουστος East Roman Chancery, in letters from μέγας βασιλεύς Ρωμαίων το μεγαλοthe Emperor to the Caliph, to give TT PETEOTÁTW KTX. (as on outside). Conthe Caliph's naine precedence on the stantine, C'er. 686.


already been explained. After its surrender, Theophilus addressed a letter to the Caliph,' which according to an Arabic historian, was couched in the following phrases :

Of n truth, it is inore rcasonable for two antagonists, striving each for his own welfaro, to agree than to cause injury to each other. Assuredly, you will not consent to renounce your own welfare for tlie sake of another's. You are sufficiently intelligent to understand this without a lesson from me. I wrote to you to propose the conclusion of peace, as I carnestly desire complete peace, and relief from the burden of war. We will be comrades and allies ; our revenues will increase steadily, our trade will be facilitated, our captives liberated, our rouls and uninhabited districts will be safe. If you refuse, then--for I will not dissimulate or tlatter you with worls--I will go forth against you, I will take your border lands from you, I will destroy your horsemen and your footmen. And if I do this, it will be after I have raised a tlag of parleys between



To this epistle the Caliph disdainfully replied in terms like these :

I have received your letter in which you ask for peace, and in mingled tones of softness and severity try to lend me by referring to commercial advantages, steady augmentation of revenues, liberation of captives, and the termination of war. Were I not cautious and deliberate before deciiling to act, I would have answered your letter by a squadron of valiaut and scasoned horsemen, who would attempt to tear you from your household, and in the cause of Gol would count as nought the pain which your valour might cause them. And then I would have given thein reinforcements and supplies of arms. And they woull rush to drink the dranghits of death with more zest than you would tee to find a renge from their insults. For they are promised one of two supreme blessings--victory here or the glorious future of paradise. But I have deemed it right to invite you and yours to acknowlelge the One God and to adopt monotheism and Islam. If you refuse, then there shall be a truce for the exchange of captives; but if you also decline this proposition, you will have such personal acquaintance with our qualities as shall render further eloquence on my part needless. He is safe who follows the right path.


If these letters represent the tenor of the communications which actually passed ? it is clear that Mamun, encouraged by

| This is tho embassy briefly re- (Dato, A.1). 832.) They are not quite corded by Michael Syr. 75 (A. D. 832), consistent, however, with the account who says that Mamun ulterod fierce of Michael, who says (ib.) that Mamun threats when Manuel left his service replied, Acknowledyo my sovranty and that these threats frightened over you, pay me a tribute, however Thcophilus.

small, and I will agree to your re? They are given by Tabari, 25, 26, quest” (op. Bar.Hebr. 154). and accepted as genuine by Vasil'ev.

the successes of the three past years, had no wish to bring the war to a closc. lle looked forward, perhaps, to the entire subjugation of the Empire." But his duys were numbered. In the following summer he crossed the frontier, took some fortresses, and returned to l'odandos, where he was stricken down by a futal fever. He died on August 7, A.D. 833, and Was buried at Tarsus.

§ 5. The Embassy of John the Grammarian and the Flight

of Manuel

[ocr errors]

It was probably in the first months of his reign that the Emperor sent to the Caliph an embussy which made such an impression on popular imagination that it has assumed a more or less legendary character. The fact seems to be, so far as can be made out from the perplexing evidence, that John the Synkellos, commonly known as the Grainmarian, a savant who, it inay well be, was acquainted with Arabic, was sent to Baghdad, to announce the accession of Theophilus. llo carried costly presents for the Caliph, and lurgo sums of money for the purpose of impressing the Surucons by ostentations liberality. The imagination of the Greeks dwelt complacently on the picture of an Imperial ambassador astonishing the Eastern world by his luxury and magniticence, and all kinds of anecdotes concerning John's doings at Baghdad were invented. It was said that he scattered gold like the sand of the sea, and bestowed rich gifts on anyone who on any pretext visited him in his hostel.

An additional interest was attached to the embassy of John the grammarian by the link, whether actual or fictitious, which connected it with the adventures of a famous general of the time, and this connection led Greek tradition to misdite the embassy to a later period in the reign. Manuel, who under Leo V. had been stratégos of the Armeniuc Theme, was distinguished for his personal prowess, and under Michael II. 1 So Yakubi, 9, who says he pure with new proposals of peace.

See posed to besiege Amorion, and settle Masudi, Prairies d'or, vii. 94-6, cd. ile Araiis of the desert in the towns Barbier de Neynard ( = Vasil'ev, 66). of the empire.

3 Cont. 7. 95 preserves the truth. ? While he was at Podanilos, before This was first pointed out by Brooks. he crossed the frontier, an envoy of See Appendix VIII. Theophilus is said to have arrived • Over £17,000, Cont. Th. 96.

he had apparently again acted us stratégos, perhaps of the same Theme. He was of Armenian descent, and the Empress Theodora was his brother's daughter. In the Saracen war

' his boldness and determination saved the Emperor's life. It was related that Theophilus, in a battle which he fought and lost (A.D. 830) against the forces of Mamun, was hard pressed and sought sufety anong the l'ersian troops - who formed the intention of handing over his person to the enemy and making terms for themselves. Manuel, who knew their language, became aware of the contemplated trenchery, rushed through their ranks, and seizing the bridle of Theophilus dragged him, angry and reluctant, from the danger which he did not suspect. The Emperor rewarded his saviour with such lavish marks of favour that the jealousy of Petronas, the brother of the Empress, was aroused. Theophilus was informed that Manuel was aspiring to the throne, and he believed, the accusation, baseil perhaps on some unguarded words. Made aware of his danger, Manuel crossed over to Pylne, and making use of the » Imperiul post reached the Cilician frontier. Ho was joyfully

welcomed by the Sirucens, and the Caliph, who was wintering in Syrin, gladly accepted the services of his enemy's ablest general." The countrymen of Manuel, who were vainer of) his reputation for warlike prowess than they were indignant at his desertion to the Unbelievers, relate with complacency that he perforined great services for the Caliph against the sectaries of Babek and the rebellious population of Khurusan.'

· For his career see Coint. Th. 110 3 Simeon's account of the circum(hin Armenian descent is also noted stanco (Ailu. licorg. 790) is superior in Geni. 52). For his relationship to to Gon. and Cont. T'h. Theodora, ib. 148, θείος από πατρός. who brought the charge against Vasil'ev (Index, 171), and others Manuel was Myron, Logothote of the distinguish two Manuels, but there Course, otherwise of no note in his. can in ny opinion be no question tory; but he was the father-in-law of that Manuel, the magister, who Petronas, and it might therefore bo played an important part after the conjectured that Petronas was behind death of Theophilus, is the same as the attempt to ruin his uncle. The the Munnel wliom Thcophilus crcate fact that Petronas Manuel's a magister. Suy Appendix VIII.

nephew does not militate against ? I have followed the briefer and this supposition. more intelligible version of Simeon + Soo Con. Th. 118. I infer that (add. Geory. 802=710 cd. Mur.): 80 this piece was based on a good source, Vasil'ev, 86. In Gun, 61 (followed from the mention of the blurramites in Cont, Th. 110), the incident is im. (Kopudto). This was not a familiar piroved with details, and the danger name to the Greeks, and points to is heightonell; the Emperor is rescued special information. Cl. also lien. not from tho Persians, but from the 72. Saracens themselves.


[ocr errors]

The personi



[ocr errors]
« PrethodnaNastavi »