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date: 21 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Byzantium inherited and preserved a corpus of ancient military treatises that would become the basis of Byzantine military literature, which belongs to a tradition of war writings in Greek dating back to the fourth century BCE. These treatises can be divided into five genres that treat war in its various aspects: taktika, strategika, poliorketika, naumachika, and strategemata. The reign of Leo's son Constantine VII (913-59) was a decisive phase in the history of Byzantine military literature. The single most important Byzantine treatise is the Strategikon composed by Maurice around the year 600. The soldier-emperor Nikephoros Phokas also wrote or inspired tactical handbooks that close the gap between theory and practice.

Keywords: Byzantium, military literature, military treatises, wars, Constantine VII, Strategikon, Nikephoros Phokas

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