Byzantium, the Underappreciated Empire V: Further Reading
If you enjoyed the short series on Byzantium, and would like to know more, I strongly recommend The Grand Strategy of the Byzantine Empire, by Edward N. Luttwak. Luttwak’s work is thorough and engaging, and contains far more detail regarding the Byzantine methods of diplomacy and misdirection than the scant overview I have provided.
Those more interested in military history I would point towards the Strategikon, which is a straightforward primer on military tactics and strategy created for officers in the Byzantine armies. I personally use the translation provided by George T. Dennis, though there are many to choose from.
Finally, if you want to read more on the Crusader reactions to the Byzantine tactics they saw on display, I suggest The Crusades: A History, by Jonathan Riley-Smith, and The Crusades: A Reader, a collection of translated primary documents (that is, documents written during the time of the event itself) edited by S.J. Allen and Emilie Amt which also includes an insightful look into the Byzantine perception of events as written by the daughter of the reigning Byzantine Emperor during the time of the First Crusade.
Thank you very much for joining me during the telling of “An Underappreciated Empire”. We will return to Byzantium in the future, for as I said, it is a favourite topic of mine. For now, however, it’s time to take a break from pure history and talk about a game. On Wednesday: Rome, Total War.