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Commentaries of Gregory of Nazianzus, Byzantine, 879-883AD
f.239r (upper register) Gregory of Nazianzus taking leave of Theodosius I

A larger image of Gregory of Nazianzus taking leave of Theodosius I, f.239r, 'Commentaries of Gregory of Nazianzus', Byzantine, BnF Grec 510

s. grégoire de nazianze prenant congé de théodose 1
Titre : Grégoire de Nazianze, manuscrit dédié à l'empereur Basile Ier le Macédonien.
Date d'édition : 0879-0883
Type : manuscrit
Langue : Grec
Format : Parchemin. - 465 fol. - Onciale. - Peint. - 435 x 300 mm
Description : Grégoire de Nazianze, Homélies.

Miniature au folio 239r. Au registre supérieur, Grégoire et l'empereur Théodose: Grégoire suivi de deux évêques s'adresse à Théodose Ier; à droite le trône impérial à côté duquel se tiennent deux gardes.
Miniature on folio 239r. In the upper register, Gregory and the Emperor Theodosius: Gregory followed by two bishops addresses Theodosius I; on the right, the imperial throne beside which two guards stand.

Source : Bibliothèque nationale de France, Département des manuscrits, Grec 510

Folio 239v (27) (fig. 27)
The upper register of f.239r shows Gregory 'conversing' with the Emperor Theodosios (Ο ΘΕΟΛΟΓΟC CΥΝ[ΔΙΑΛΕΓ]ΟΜΕΝΟC ΒΑCΙΛΕΙ ΘΕΟΔΟCΙΩ); the lower shows his departure from Constantinople after he rejected the patriarchal seat in 381.
     The upper scene is set against an architectural backdrop painted in blue-on-blue that extends across the register and represents the imperial palace. Gregory, followed by two bishops, faces a frontal Theodosios distinguished by a pearled halo that perpetuates a motif more common in early Byzantine art and may suggest an attempt to provide historical flavour. The emperor occupies the centre of the composition; on the right, an elaborate gold throne is flanked by two bodyguards. Apart from the pearled halo, Theodosios is portrayed as elsewhere in the manuscript (f.355r; fig. 36), and the jewelled throne presents a variation on a type seen in other miniatures as well.93 The throne sits beneath a jewelled ciborium, supported by gem-encrusted columns with capitals in the shape of eagles, the imperial and cosmological significance of which was long ago noted by Karl Lehmann.

93 With David on f. 143v and the 381 Council on f. 355r (figs. 19, 36). This is not the so-called lyre-backed throne sometimes associated with the emperor, though that form is found occupied by Christ on f. 67v and by Julian the Apostate on f. 374v (figs. 11, 39); see also the discussion of f. Av in chapter 4.

Source: pp.132-134, Vision and Meaning in Ninth-Century Byzantium by Leslie Brubaker

Referenced on p.23, Byzantine Imperial Guardsmen 925-1025: The Tághmata and Imperial Guard by Timothy Dawson
Sts Gregory of Nazianzius and Theodosius, in a miniature of c. AD 880. The Imperial Spathárioi or Protospathárioi, visible here, were equipped with a spathion chrysokanon, i.e. a sword with a golden hilt, as described in De Ceremoniis (II, 574–575, 640) and the Kletorologion of Philotheos (91, 127) as a distinction of the court rank of these Imperial Guardsmen. (Cod. Par. Gr. 510, folio 239r; ex Kolias)
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