Imperial Ceremonies

The manuscript (ca. 290,000 words) was submitted as a habilitation thesis to FB III of the University of Trier on 7 April 2021.

The monographic study will be chronologically limited to the years between the Theodosian dynasty until the end of the reign of Emperor Herakleios and his directly related successors, i.e. from the second half of the 4th century to the second half of the 7th century. The focus on the Eastern Roman emperors in Constantinople is a consequence of both the better overall source situation for this area, and one of the core theses of the work: i.e. that it was precisely the retreat to Constantinople that made a sophisticated ceremonial not only possible but necessary. However, where appropriate, fundamental developments in the field of ceremonial and imperial political ideology will be treated synoptically with developments in the Western Empire, where a similar retreat of imperial persons took place. The basic approach of the work is to understand late antique ceremonial as a collection of rituals constituting meaning and power, in which the essential aspects of late antique ruler ideology are reflected. Following current research on court and ceremonial culture, imperial ceremonial is understood not only as monarchical representation, but also as a performative expression of a form of rule based on acceptance and consensus.