Abstract and Keywords
In 1978, Robert Browning wrote an chapter claiming that Byzantines were highly literate. Subsequent studies on Byzantine literacy have sought to either redefine what literacy might have meant in Byzantine circumstances, or determine the number of Byzantines who signed their names on documents and the accuracy of their spelling. Manuscripts, especially those of literary texts, are the longest and most elaborate documents demonstrating Byzantine literacy. One of the factors that must have helped the cause of literacy in Byzantium was the replacement of ancient religious forms by Christianity, which relied on the Bible. This article follows the project sketched by Browning's chapters to examine literacy in Byzantium. It also considers the church service and the assumed audience of Byzantine fiction to assess the level of literacy of the Byzantines.
Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.
If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.