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w have made no difficulty in performing the ceremony of coronation for the successful conspirator. The Amorian soldier received the crown from the prelate's hands, and the crowd was ready to acclaim the new Augustus. Those who held to image worship did not regret the persccutor of their faith, but thought that he had perished justly; and perhaps to most in that superstitious populace the worst feature in the whole work seemed to be that his blood lund stuined i holy builling. We have alrendy seen how Michael dealt with the Empress Theodosin and her children.
The new Roman Emperor? was a rude provincial, course in manners, ill-educated, and superstitious. But he was vigorous, ambitions, and prudent, and he had worked his way up in the army by his own energy and perseverance.
. Amorion, the city of his birth, in Upper Phrygin, was at this time an important place, is the capital of the Anatolic province. It was the goal of many a Saracen invasion. Its strong walls had defied the generals of the Caliphs in the dinys of the Isaurian Leo; but it was destined, soon after it had won the glory of giving a dynasty to the Empire, to be captured by the Unbelievers. This Phrygian town was a head-quarter for Jews, and for the heretics who were known as Athingani." It is said that Michael inherited from his parents Athingan views, but according to another account he was a Sabbatian." Whatever be the truth about this, he was inclined to tolerate heresies, of which he must have seen much at his native town in the days of his youth. He was also favourably disposed to the Jews; but the statement that his grandfather was a converted Jew does not rest on very good authority. It is certain that his parents were of humble rank, and that his youth, spent among heretics, Hebrews, and half-Hellenized Phrygians, was subject to influences which were very different from the Greek polish of the capital. One so trained must have felt himself strange among the men of old nobility, of Hellenic education, and ecclesiastical ortho
Such was the thought of the Nicetas, Vit. Iyn. 216. Tho ('ontinuer of Theophanes, 42.
Sabbatians were a fourth-century off? His aye on his accession is not , shoot from the Novatians; they held recorded, but he was certajuly well that Easter should be celebrated on over forty.
the same day and in the saine manner * See above, p. 40.
as the Jewish feast. + Cunt. Th. 42,
o Michael Syr. 72.
doxy with whom he had to deal in Constantinople. He did not disguise his contompt for Hellenio culture, and he is handed down to history as an ignorant churl.
Such a man was a good aim for the ridicule of witty Byzantines, and it is recorded that many lumpoons were published on the crowned boor.
The low-born Phrygian who founded a new dynasty in the ninth contury rominds us of the low-born Dardaninn who founded a new dynnsty exactly throu hundred yenry before. The first Justin, like the second Michael, was ignorant of letters. It was told of Justin that he had a mechanical contrivance for making his signature, and of Michael it was popularly reported that another could rend through a book inoro quickly than he could spell out the six letters of his name. They were both soldiers' and had worked their way ир in the service, and they both held the same post at the time of their elevation. Justin was the commander of the Excubitors when he was called upon to succeed Anastasius, even as Michael when he stepped into the place of Leo. But Michael could not say like Justin that his hands were pure of blood. The parallel may be carried still further. The soldier of Ulpiana, like the soldier of Ainorion, reigned for about nine years, and each 'had a successor who was a remarkable contrast to himself. After the rude Justin, caine his learned and intellectual nephew Justinian; after the rude Michael, his polished son Theophilus.
Michael shared the superstitions which were not confined to his own class. He was given to consulting soothsayers and diviners; and, if report spoke true, his career was directed by prophecies and omens. It is said that his first marriage was brought about through the utterances of a soothsayer. He had been an officer in the army of the Anatolic Theme, in days before he had entered the service of Bardanes. The general of that Theme, whose name is not recorded, was as ready as most of his contemporaries to believe in prognostication, and when one of the Athingan sect who professed to
Cp. Finlay, ii. pp. 128, 129. is described as not so cruel as Leo, but 2 Cout. Τh. 49 την Ελληνικήν
τα πάντα γαστρι χαριζόμενος και σχεδόν παίδευσιν διαπτύων, where Hellenic is
έν άνθρωπεία σώματι κτηνώδη αναστροφής not used in the bad sense of pagan.
και δίαιταν αναδειξάμενος.
• Cont. Th. 49, clearly taken from 3 Ib. In the clcta Davilis, 230, he one of the popular lampoons.
tell fortunes, declared to him that Michael and another officer of his staff were marked out for Imperial rank in the future, he lost no time in taking measures to unite them with his family. He prepared a feast, and chose them out of all the ollicers to be his guests, to their own astonishment.
But a greater surprise awaited them, for when they were heated with wine, ho offered them his daughters in marriage. At this unexpected condescension, the young men, of whom one at least wils of humble birth, were stupefied and speechless. They drew back at first from an honour of which they deemed themselves umworthy; but the superstitious general overcaine their scruples, and the marringes took place. Thus it came about that Michael won Thecla,' who became the mother of the Emperor Theophilus. The other son-in-law, whoever he may have been, Wils not so fortunate; in his case the soothsayer Wils conspicuously at fault.?
Theophilus, for whom Leo V. had probably stood sponsor," was adult when his father came to the throne, and on the following Whitsunday (May 12 A.D. 821) Michael, according to the usual practice, secured the succession by elevating him to the rank of Basileus and Augustus. The ceremony of his marriage was celebrated on the same occasion. Having
Iller dine is known from Con. υπό 'Αντωνίου πατριάρχου και τα του stantine, Cer. 013, and Michael Syri' gdjou kal Tê This Bao delas ote del TÔ 72. Simeon and the l'ita Thcolorae ayla revTnKOOTÝ. (Cp. vers. Sluv. 93, statı that Theophilus was the son of and Alld. Geory. 790; the text of Leo Michael's second wifo, Euphrosyne. Gr. is imperfect.) Soo Brooks, op. cit.
• The story is told by Gen. 31 542, who rightly says that this is an (--(unt. 1%. 41.)
authentic notice which must bo sopar. 3 (cm. 12.
ated from the legend which precedes • The truo date of the elevation of it. It is not clear whether all those Theophil'is and his marriage has been ceremonies were perfornied on the ascertained by Brooks (B.2. 10, 540) same day. The crowning of Thco. $49.). The will of Justinian, Duke of philus with the diadem (oré uma or Venice, muates indiction 7 (A.D. 828. diádnua) must have como first, and 829) with the ninth year of Michael was performed in St. Sophia ; the and the righteenth (mistake for eighth) ceremony is described in Constantine, of Theophilus. This is compatible Cer. i. 38. We must not press the with his coronation in A.D. 821 or 822. notice so as to imply that Michael was Now there are no coins of Michael II. absent himself and deputed the Patri. alone (see Wroth, ii. 416), and this arch to crown his son. Except in the fact, combined with the probability Emperor's absence, the Patriarch that the Emperor would not delay handed the crown to him, and he long to crown his son, justifies us in placed it on his colleague's head. deciding for 821. The day of the The marriagų ceremony was always Crtellony is recorded by Simicon.
performed in the Church of St. Stephen : Simcoll ( Throul. Mol. 147), or det in Daphine, and is described Cer. i. δε θεοδώραν εν τω είκτηρία του αγίου 39 (the nuptial crown is oteparwua, Στεφάνου, στεφθείς και αυτός άμα αυτη as distinguished from the Imperial
received the Imperial crown from his father's hands in St. Sophia, he was wedded by the Patriarch, in the Church of St. Stephen in the Palace, to Theodora, a Paphlagonian lady, whose father and uncle were officers in the army. The ceremony was followed by her coronation as Augusta.
It is probable that the provincial Theodora, of an obscuro but well-to-do family, was discovered by ineans of the bride-show custoin which in the eighth and ninth centuries was habitually employed for the purpose of selecting brides for Imperial heirs. Messengers were sunt into the provinces to soarch for maidens who seemed by their exceptional physical attractions and their mental qualities worthy of sharing the throne of un Emperor. They were guideıl in their selection by certain fixed standards; they rejected all candidates who did not conform, in stature and in the dimensions of their heads and foot, to prescribed meusures of beauty. It was thus that
" Maria, discovered in a small town in Paphlagonia, came to be the consort of Constantine VI., and we saw how a bride-show Was held for the wedding of Stauracius.' In later times Michael III. and Leo VI. would win their brides in the same fashion ;6 and it is not improbable that Irene of Athens owed her marriage with Leo IV. to this custom.
The bride-show of Theophilus has been embroidered with legendary details, and it has beon misdated, but there is no reason for doubting that it was actually held. represents Theophilus as still unmarried when he becamo solo Emperor after his father's death. His stepmother Euphrosyne
στέμμα). The coronation of the Augusta was colebrated in the samo place (ib. i. 40). The proceduro whuro tho marriage and coronation of an Augusta woro combined is described ib. i. 41. For the succession of Autonius to the Patriarchato, sce below, p. 115.
· Her father was Marinos, a drun. garios, if not a turmarch. He belonged to the town of Ebissa (Cont. Th. 89). In the same passago the fact that Theodora had been crowned "long ago," rádai on, 3.c. before her husband's accession to the autocracy, is recorded. For the family relations of Thoodora Heo below, Chapter V. p. 156, Genca. logical Table. She was of Armenian descont, nt least on ono side, for her
* Above, p. 15.
o Michael III. : Vita Irenes, 603. Loo VI. : Vita Theophanus, ed. Kurtz (Zapiski imp. Aki Nauki viiio aér. iii. 2 (1898), p. 6). Tho custom, but perhaps in a modified form, made its way into Franco: Lewis the Pious choso his wito Judith, inspectis pleris. que nobilium filiabus (Ann. 7. Fr. 160, A.D. 819).
assembled the maidens, who had been gathered from all the provinces, in the Pearl-chamber in the Palace, and gave the Emperor a golden apple to bestow upon her who pleased him best.' Theophilus halted before Kasia, a lady of striking beauty and literary attainments, and addressed to her a cynical remark, apparently couched in metrical form," to which she had a ready answer in the same style.
Of all man's tribulation.
of man's regeneration.
The boldness of the retort did not please the Emperor, and he gave the golden apple to Theodora.
It was in the spring of A.D. 821, and not nine years later, that Theophilus inade his choice, and it was his mother, Thecla, if she was still alive, and not Euphrosyne, who presided over the bride-show. Some may think that the golden apple, the motif of the judgment of Paris, must be rejected as a legendary trait in the story; yet it seems possible that the apple had been deliberately borrowed from the Greek myth as a symbol by which the Emperor intimated his choice and was al regular feature of the Byzantine brideshows. Nor does there seein any reason to doubt that the poetess Kasia was one of the chosen maidens; and the passage between her and the Emperor is, if not true, happily invented so far as her extant epigrams reveal her character.' Dis
The story in its genuine form is θ. ζω γύναι), δια γυναικός ζεισ ερρύη τα told by Simeon (Al. Geory. 790). It φαύλα. is completely altered and corrupted in Κ. αλλά και δια γυναικός τα κρείττονα Vitu Theulorue, 4 (sce below). The πηγάζει. learl-chamber (uapyapitou TpikAwos) is
(text: any. Td Kp.). I pointed this an anachronisin. It was one of the out in Gibbon, v. 199 note, and Engl. new buildings of Theophilus himself llist. Rev. xiii. p. 340 (1898). (see below, l. 131). The bride show of 8 Eudocia, his mother (not Basil), Leo VI. was held iv tuvi Baoiliko manages the bride-show of Leo Ví. Tajew This TepuBNÉT TO Mavarpas (Vila (Vila Theophanus, loc. cit.). ταμιείο της περιβλέπτου ( Theophanus, loc. cit.).
• ller strong opinions came out in ? With slight change the dinloglie her epigrams; she did not suffer fools in the chronicle falls into the “politi: gladly see the verses on the uwpos in cal metre," which I have reproduced Krumbacher, Kasia, p. 362, cp. p. 365. in English:
Three liymns of Kasia aro printed in