Secular Byzantine Women Art, Archaeology, and Ethnography of Female Material Culture from Late Roman to Post-Byzantine Times
Secular Byzantine Women examines female material culture during the Late Roman, Byzantine, and Post-Byzantine eras, to better understand the lives of ordinary and humble women during this period.
Although recent scholarship has contributed greatly to our knowledge of Byzantine and medieval women, such research has largely focused on female saints, imperial figures, and prominent women of local communities. But what about secular and non-privileged women? Bringing together scholars from various fields, including archaeology, history, theology, anthropology, and ethnography, this volume seeks to answer this important question. The chapters examine the everyday lives of lay women, including their working routines, their clothing, and precious possessions.
This book will appeal to scholars and students of Byzantine history, art, and archaeology, as well as those interested in gender and material culture studies.
Part I: Modest Vanity, Social Identity
- Women’s accessories from a bath house on Santorini (Thira), Cyclades (2th - 4th centuries)
Marina Vogkli and Stavroula Papanikolopoulou
2. Unheard voices of Early Byzantine childhood. On the custom of adorning secular girls with earrings as seen through the evidence of burials
3. Not even a band on my finger? Rings of non-elite women
Florentia Evangelatou-Notara and Kalliope Mavrommati
Part 2. Working Girls
4. Women and beekeeping –a forbidden liaison? Scattered evidence with emphasis on Christian era (Byzantine – Medieval culture)
5. Eve at the forge: Byzantine women and manual labour. Comments on a rare iconographical theme and its connection to reality
6. Female family status during the Late Byzantine period; evidence from MS Parisinus graecus 135
7. Ordinary women in Byzantine funerary contexts from Greece; a view from the bones
Paraskevi (Voula) Tritsaroli
Part 3. Earthly delights, holy concerns
8. The ‘transcendental’ role of woman in Early Patristics (theological and philosophical insights)
9. Interpreting the female dances of "Ainoi" (Laudes) in the Post-Byzantine painting
Part 4. An ethnographic glimpse
10. Illustrating the daily life of a woman in Mani during the Post-Byzantine period. A small contribution on the subject.
11. Womens’ work in pre-industrial rural Greece. An ethnographic point of view
‘A variety of sources and approaches motivates this collective female work that broadens our horizons in this fascinating area of Byzantine culture … Sofia Germanidou responded felicitously to the editorial task, achieving consistent scholarship, uniform, well-documented and convincing papers, amply supported both from primary sources and secondary modern bibliography. As a result, individually and collectively, the essays of the volume offer insight and make a meaningful contribution to the field’ - Byzantina Symmeikta, Volume 32 (2022).