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Christendom,' and a Greek contemporary writer ranks it next to the capital.
Mutasim left his palace at Samarra in April (A.D. 838), and the banners of his immense arıny were inscribed with the name of Amorion. The Caliph was a warrior of indisputable bravery, but we know not whether it was he or his generals who designed the strategical plan of the invasion. The two most eminent generals who served in this campaign were Ashnas and Afshin. The former was a Turk, and his prominence is significant of the confidence which Mutasim reposed in his new corps of Turkish guards. Afshin had distinguished himself by suppressing rebellion in Egypt, and he had dono much to terminate the war against Babek which had been so long drawn out.
The city of Ancyra was fixed upon as the first objective of the invasion. An army of the east, under the command of Afshin, advanced by way of Germanicia, and crossed the frontier by the Piss of Hadath on a day which was so fixed as to allow him time to meet the army of the west in the plains of Ancyra.
The purposes of the Caliph were not kept secret. The dispositions of the Emperor show that he was aware of the designs on Ancyra and Amorion. llo left Constantinople probably in May; and from Dorylaion, the first great military station on the road to the Saracen frontier, he mude provisions for the strengthening of the walls and the garrison of Amorion. The duty of defending the city naturally devolved upon Aetius, the stratégos of the Anatolic Theme, for Amorion was his ollicinl resiilence, Tho plan of the Emperor was to attack the forces of the enemy on their northward march to Ancyra. Knowing nothing of the eastern army under Afshin, he crossed the lIalys and encamped with his ariny. not far from the river's bank in the extreme south of the Charsian district, I "And moro valued by the Greeks
negrocs. Masudi (68) says that the than Constantinople" (Tabari, 30); numbers woro oxaggerated by some to cp. Marudi, 74.
600,000 and recluceal liy other's 10 lcn cill. 425 (op. 11.):
200,000. Tabari (30) mys that 110 3 According to Michael Syr. 05, Caliph hud over made preparations for Mutasim's army numbered 50,000, war on such a gigantic scale. These Arshin's 30,000. llo mentions also statements illustrate the value of 30,000 merchanty and providors, numbers in medieval writers, WO 50,000 camels, 20,000 mulos. Bar. can only trust intelligent conten. Hebraeus (159) says that Mutrsim led porarios. lloro the numbers of the 220,000 men. The Armenian version combiutants given by Michael, i.e. of Michael (274) mentionis 30,000 Dionysios, are moderate and credible.
probably near Zoropussos, where there was a bridge. He calculated that the enemy would march from the Cilician Gates to Ancyra by the most direct road, which from Soandos to Parnassos followed the course of the river, and he hoped to attack them on the flank.' The Caliph's western army advanced northward from Tyana in two divisions, and Ashnas, who was in front, was already near the Halys before tho Emperor's proximity was suspected. The Caliph ordered a halt till the position and movements of the Romans should be discovered. But in the meantime Theophilus had been informed of the advance of the easteru army, and the news disconcerted his plans. He was now obliged to divide his forces. Taking, probably, the greater portion with him, he marched himself to oppose Afshin, and left the rest, under the command of a kinsman, to check or harass the progress of the Caliph. Afshin had already passed Sebasten (Sivas), and was in the district of Dazimon, when he was forced to give battle to the Emperor. Dazimon, the modern Tokat, commands the great eastern rond froin Constantinople to Sebastea, at the point where another road runs northward to Neo-Caesarea. The town lies at the foot of a hill, at one extremity of which the ruins of the ancient fortress are still to be seen.' Situated near the southern bank of the Iris, it marks the castern end of a fertile plain stretching to (iaziura (now Turkhal), which in the ancient and middle ages was known as Dazimonitis; the Turks call it Kaz-Ova, It was probably in this plain that the Saracens encamped. The Emperor, who may have
i For details of the march of Mutasim and Ashnas, see Bury, Mutasim's Marck. Tabari's account of the campaign is fuller than any other.
* 30,000 (Michael Syr. 95, who gives no topographical indications). Afshin is evidently meant by Simeon's (lirious Sudet (Sundei, rers. Slav. 97 ; Lovoen, Aili. Gcorg. ed. Mur. 712; Lovodu, Leo Gr. 224).
3 Gen. 67 oi (the Saracen comiat:lers) κατά τον Δαξιμώνα συνήχθησαν otparomedevo durvou. Tabari's date (45) for the battle, July 22, can hardly lie right. A longer time nust surely have elapsed before the beginuing of the siege of Amorion (Aug. 1). More. over, Tabari refutes himself. His date
is “Thursday, Shaban 25." But Shaban 25 = July 22 fell on Monday.
• For the pain of Dazimon, which seems to have been once part of an Imperiul estate, roo Anderson, Saud. l'oil. i. 68 ; for Tokat itself and the fortress, Cumont, ib. ii. 240-243.
• Afshin had been reinforced by the forces of Armenia lal by Bagarat, lord (ishkhan) of Vaspurakan, the "prince of princes." This title was rendered in Greek by άρχων των αρχόν. TW (Constantine, Cer. 687). Cenesios has split him into two persons (67) αυτού του αρχ. αρχ. και του Βεσπαρα. kavitov (I am not quite sure whether Marquart follows him, op. cit. 46:3). Const. Th. 127 rightly mentions only one person. Bagarat was a son of
arrived on the scene by way of Zela and Gaziura, halted near Anzên, a high hill, from whose summit the position of the onemy could be seen.
This hill has not been identified; we may perhaps guess, provisionally, that it will be discovered to the south of the plain of Dazimonitis." The fortune of the ensuing battle at first went well for the Greeks, who defeated the enemy, on one wing at least, with great loss; but a heavy shower of rain descended, and the sudden disappearance of the Emperor, who at the head of 2000 men had ridden round to reinforce the other wing of his army, gave rise, in the overhanging gloom, to the rumour that he was slain. The Romans, in consternation, turned and fled, and, when the sun emerged from the darkness, the Emperor with his band was surrounded by the troops of Afshin. They held the enemy at bay, until t!e Saracen general brought up siege-catapults to bombard them with stones; then they fought their way, desperately but successfully, through the hostile ring."
The Emperor, with his handful of followers, fled northwestward to Chiliokomon, “the plain of a thousand villages (now Sulu-Ova), and then, returning to his camp on tho Halys, found to his dismay that his kinsman had allowed, or been unable to forbid, many of the troops to disperse to their Ashot (ob. 826), on whom the Caliph companions because their bow-strings had conferred the government of were wet ; this, in turn, explains the Iborin. LO V. bestowel op him the employment of stone hurling machines titlo curupulates (frequently conferred mentioned by Michaol. According to on the Iberian princes), and in A.D. Taburi (135), who prosesses to give 820 he besought Loo's help against a the evidence of a Christian cajitive robol. (CP. Marquart, ib. 404.) present at the battle, the fortune of Bagarat was also lord of Taron (tho the day was retrioved by tho Saracen district west of Lake Van and north cavalry. It may be suspected that of Arzanene, from which it is separ. the disconfiture of the Romans, ated by the Antitauris. Vaspura. whether by archers or cavalry or both, kan is onst and north-east of Lako occurred on that wing which thu Van).
Emperor with his 2000 rodo round to Auzon recurs in a later battle in reinforce. Gon, 08-09 (Cont. Th. 128) the sanie region ; seo below, p. 282, rolates that Theophilus was rescued for tho topographical data.
by Manuel from the contemplated ! I have followed the account of treachery of his Persian reginiente.. Michael Syr. 95. Genesios (68) agrees The story is highly suspicious (cp. as to the first success of the Romans, Hirsch, 145), as it was also told, with but attributes their flight to the little variation, of a battle iu A.1), 830 archery of the Turks. He describes (above, p. 257). But the life of the surrounding of Theophilus, with Theophilus was certainly in denger, whom were Manuel, the Persians, and as we know from Michael. According the commanders of the Tagmatic to Masudi (08), having lost many of troops. He also mentions the rain his oflicers, he owed his life to the and oxplains that the Turkish archers protection of Nasr. could not shoot at Theophilus and liis 3 Seu Cumont, op. cit. 144.
various stations. Having punished the cominander for his weakness, and sent orders that the soldiers who had left the camp should be beaten with stripes, he dispatched a eunuch? to Ancyra, to provide, if there were still tiine, for the defence of that city. But it was too late; for the western army of the invaders was already there." Ancyra ought to have offered resistance to a foe. Its fortifications were probably strengthened by Nicephorus 1." But the inhabitants, thoroughly alarmed by the tidings of the victory of Afshin, deserted the city and fled into the mountains, where they were sought ont by Ashnas and easily defeated. Thus the town fell without a blow into the hands of the destroyer. The Emperor, at this crisis, did not disdain to humble himself before the Caliph. He sent an embassy, imploring pence, and offering to rebuild the fortress of Zapetra, to release all the captives who were in his hands, and to surrender those men who had committed cruel outrages in the Zapetru campaign. The overtures were rejected, with contempt and taunts, by the Caliph, and Theophilus betook himself to Dorylaiono to await the fate of i Doubtless Theodoros krateros, one [I read πένθει, Boeckh πενθεί.
не of the Amorian martyrs, who, as reads expôv tais in line 2, but the Nikitin conjectures, may have been traces do not point to this.) Now, as stratégos of the Bukellarian Theme no destruction of Ancyra is recorded (ulcta 4 Nurt, dinor. 205).
between A.D. 805 (the restoration of ? It had marched northward by the Nicephorus) and A.1). 829, Michael II. route west of the Halys (see above, cannot be meant. The storm must p. 201). Michael Syr. 95 records that refer to the event of 838, and the Mutasim found Nyssa, which lay on restoration must belong to the reign his roul, deserted, and destroyed its of Michael III. Moreover, in the case walls.
of Michael II. (except in the first five 3 Theoph. 481. In 806 llarun months of his reign), Theophilus marched within sight of the city (ib. would have been associated with him 132). It is generally said that the in such an inscription. The fact that walls were restored by Michael II. Michael III. is named alone, without so Vasil'ev, 121). But the inscrip- Theodora, points to a date after A.D), tions on which this statement is based 856, and this is confirmed by ráda. (C.1.0. iv. 8791, 8795, pp. 305.366) The other inscription (ton iambic trihave, I think, been wrongly inter- meters), though it does not mention preted.
The second consisting of the disaster, is evidently of the same tifteen iambic trimeters) tells how date, and, as Boeckl thinks, probably Michael
by the same (local) “poet.". Μιχαήλ ο δεσπότης
• A poet, Husain, sang in honour μέγας βασιλεύς ν[ικητής στεφηφόρος of Mutasim: “Of Ancyra thou didst has raised Ancyra from her ruins.
spare nought, and thou didst demolish The document begins :
the great Amorion." Ibn Khur
dadlıbah, 101, 74 ; Vasil'ev, 129, n. 2. πίνθει φθαρείσα και ζαλι)θείσα πρ[ος 5 Yakubi, 9 ; Gen. 64. πέδω
& Michael Syr. 95 relates that a χερσίν υπ ε[ ή μιαιφόνοις, [κ]
report was spread in Constantinople πάλαι,
that the Einperor was slain in the νιν (ανεγείρου των καλών άνευμένη. battle with Afshin, that a plot was
Amorion, for the safety of which he believed that he had done all that could be done.
The army of the Saracens advanced westwards from Ancyra in three coluinns, Ashnas in front, the Caliph in the centre, and Afshin behind, at distances of two parasanys. Ravaging and burning as they went, they reached Amorion in seven days. The siege began on the first of August." The city was strong; its high wall was fortified by forty-four bastions and surrounded by a wide inoat;? its defence had been entrusted by Theophilus to Aetius, stratêgos of the Anatolic Theme; and reinforcements had been added to its garrison, under Constantino Babutzikos, who had married il sister of the Empress Theodora and was Drungary of the Watch, and the eunuch Theodore Krateros 3 and others. But there was a weak spot in the fortification. Some time
formod to cloct a now Emperor, and that Thoophilus, informeil of the matter lay a mossage from his mother (? stepmother), hastened thither from Amorion and punished the conspirators, Genesios (69) mentions his being at Nicaca, aud Vasil'ev suggests that this may confirm the Syriac record.
Tabari, 45; Acta 42 Mart. 42 (είσιόντος του Αυγούστου μηνός). The city was taken on Tuesday in Ramadhan, i.e. August 13, according to Yakubi, 10. This accords with Michael Syr. 100, who says that the city was taken in 12 days, and can be recon. ciloil with the statumont of Euodios (oldta cilt. 65) that the siege lasted 13 days. For Ashnas arrived at Amorion on Thursday, August 1, tho Calipli was there on Friday, August 2, and Afshin came on Saturday (Tabari, 37). Thus the duration miglit be described as either of 12 or of 13 days (or of 11, since active operations did not begin till August 3). See Nikitin (aul Acta citt. 213), who wrongly equates the Thursday with July 31. Tabari's equation (45) of Friday with the 6th of Ramadhan is false ; Thurs. day = Ramadhan 7 (sco Mas Latrie, ?'résor, p. 566). The same scholar rightly points out that & wrong de, duction has been drawn by Weil and Vasil'ev from Tabari's statement (45) that Mutasim returned 55 days after the beginning of the siege. They
took this to moun that the siogo lasted 65 days, and no placed the capturo un September 23 or 24. But Tubari obviously means his return to Tarsus, and the 55 days include his march from Amorion, which was slow and interrupted. According to George Mon. 797, tho siege lasted 15 days in August; this is nearly right.
? Ibn Khurdadhbah.
3 The names in Simeon (Adı, licory. 805 ; vcrs. Slav. 98) and Cont. Th. 126 must be controller! by the leta of the 42 Martyrs. The identity of the oflicers has been examined by Nikitin (aletu, 202-219), who has proved, in my opinion, that Constantine the l'atrician is Constantino Babutzikos. In one document lie is described as άρχων των ταγμάτων (
St.rar. etc. Const. 516), whence Nikitin inters that he was commander of one of the “guard regiments." But Simeon's Spovyrápios shows at once that lie commanded the Arithmos (Vigla), the only one of the four Tagmata whose commander was so named. The other officers were Theophilus, stratègos, and Bassoes, ó Spouers the runner. Nikitin (208 899.) has shown that this does not mean a courier here, but a victor in the foot-race (te cod póucov). Constantine, Cer. 358, mentions Bambuludes, ó rwv IIpaoivwv Spomeus, champion of the Greeks, in the reign of Michael III.