SPBS Events

BBPN Events

See the BBPN page for the latest events.

Seminar Series at UK Universities

Conferences, Lectures & Calls for Papers (UK)

Reception, Appropriation, and Innovation: Byzantium between the Christian and Islamic Worlds

Graduate conference

30 November-1 December 2018, University of Edinburgh

Further details TBA.

Ancient and Modern Knowledges

Colloquium/Call for Papers (Deadline: 1 May 2018)

22-23 June 2018, University of Sheffield

Categories which seek to draw distinctions between different areas of scholarly inquiry in the history of knowledge, most obviously, perhaps, the distinction between ‘humanities’ and ‘sciences’ have, in many cases, spawned their own extensive sub-histories – the history of science and, more recently, the history of the humanities. Yet categories which instead seek to draw boundaries between bodies of knowledge based on distinctions of chronological time also need to be interrogated. The spatial turn in the history of knowledge has been particularly important, with much attention paid in recent years to exploring circuits, networks, geographies and mobilities of knowledge. Less consideration, however, has been given to distinctions of chronological distance (in particular, the use of the terms ‘ancient and modern’) and the associated claims of authority, legitimacy, originality and significance, which are implied when these terms are used.

For further information, see:

Hurt and Healing: people, texts, and material culture in the Eastern Mediterranean

Conference/Call for Papers (Extended deadline: 21 April 2018)

2 June 2018, University of Birmingham

The concepts of hurt, trauma and healing cross between the different disciplines that deal with Eastern Mediterranean. The colloquium aims to explore transformations and multifarious dimensions of the notions of trauma and wreckage, and their opposition, healing, from the Late Antiquity to the Present.

Whilst serving as antitheses to one another they are also complementary. After destruction and breakage, comes the need for repair. However, when a broken textile’s ripped edges are joined again, the visible seam signifies the damage that has happened. Trauma and healing are key concepts in medicine, psychology, and sociology. However, political ideology has constantly used them in order to justify the rising and the existence of authoritarian regimes. In the past, medicine, saints, and magic offered different ways for healing the body and the soul. The current aim of restoration practices is to heal remnants of cultural heritage after damage and to prevent damage with appropriate conservation strategies.

For further details, see

A celebration of 100 years of the Koreas Chair

18 June 2018, King's College London

The Koraes Chair of Modern Greek and Byzantine History, Language and Literature commemorates the ‘founding father’ of the Greek nation-state that came into existence with the Revolution of 1821. Since the 1970s the Chair has become the focal point and impetus for an expanding programme of teaching and research in Modern Greek and Byzantine studies at King’s College London, now a leading centre for these fields worldwide.

Distinguished experts will speak on relations between Britain and the world of Hellenism in the fields of culture, literature and history, from the time of Adamantios Koraes to the present, and prospects for the future.

For details and registration, see

Seventh British Patristics Conference

5-7 September 2018, Cardiff University

All further details will be published at as they become available.

Seventh Century Syrian Numismatic Round Table

Conference/Call for papers

6-7 April 2019, Worcester

The Round Table aims to bring together numismatists, historians and archaeologist with an interest in Late Antiquity/Early Islam in Syria/Palestine and the surrounding area. We hold small informal conferences at roughly two yearly intervals which usually include at least ten papers with plenty of time allowed for discussion. The central focus is the Syrian Arab-Byzantine coinage, but papers can cover Byzantine or Post-Reform Umayyad coinage, or deal with aspects of the history or archaeology of Syria/Palestine. Papers sometimes present completed pieces of research, but more often they deal with ‘work in progress’.

If you are interested in presenting a paper (or would just like more information about the conference) please contact Tony Goodwin on Presentations should normally last no more than 40 minutes, but much shorter papers are equally acceptable. A short abstract will be circulated before the conference and the papers will be published in full in the conference proceedings.

Ecclesiastical History Society Conference 2018-19: The Church and the Law

Call for papers (Deadline: 31 March 2018)

24-26 July 2018, Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge

This theme addresses the legal issues and legal consequences underlying relations between secular and religious authorities in the context of the Christian church, from its earliest emergence within Roman Palestine as a persecuted minority sect through to the period when it became legally recognised within the Roman empire, its many institutional manifestations in East and West throughout the middle ages, the reconfigurations associated with the Reformation and Counter- Reformation, the legal and constitutional complications (such as in Reformation England or Calvin’s Geneva), and the variable consequences of so-called secularisation thereafter. On many occasions in recent years, moreover, we have been confronted with contemporary discrepancies, contradictions, and even rejection of secular laws, modern social mores or social attitudes. What were the legal consequences and implications of the Reformation, (including the confiscation and restitution of property), of the French wars of religion; the French Revolution; the political transformations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? Are there particular influences on the formation of ecclesiastical law (the Bible, Roman law, national law codes)? The engagement of secular and religious authorities with the law and what that law actually comprised (Roman law, canon law, national laws, state and royal edicts) are further issues to be addressed. This is also a theme that requires the examination of the formation of bodies of law and how and why it became recognised as law. The formation of canon law is a case in point. There is also the problem of definition. How early, for example, can a ‘code of canon law’ be defined, and what are the processes by which opinion and conciliar decision became perceived as ‘law’? What light does the transmission and reception of ‘canon law’ throw on such questions?

For further details, see

The Sacral and the Secular: Early Medieval Political Theology

Conference/Call for papers (deadline: 15 January 2018)

28 June 2018, Churchill College, Cambridge

Ever since Ernst Kantorowicz popularised the term ‘political theology’ in the 1950s, scholars have known that the political and religious thought of the early Middle Ages cannot be separated. But since the 1990s there has been a resurgence of interest in this field. The traditional focus on sacral kingship has been replaced by an awareness of the early Middle Ages as a world of debate and contestation where a wide variety of political theologies existed. This one-day conference will explore the latest thinking on early medieval political theology, with particular attention to the idea of the secular during the period.

For details, see

Medieval Monks, Nuns & Monastic Life

21st Biennial Symposium of the IMSSS

15-20 July 2018, University of Bristol

The 2018 IMSSS symposium will explore the breadth and depth of sermon literature and preaching activity relating to monks, nuns, and monastic life, and serve as a microcosm of the religious and cultural landscape of the Middle Ages.

The symposium will be based in the beautiful grounds of the University of Bristol's Wills Hall, and will include a workshop at historic Downside Abbey, with its medieval manuscripts, incunables, and Centre for Monastic Heritage. We will also visit Wells Cathedral, as well as the medieval sites of Bristol.

Keynote speakers include Claudia Rapp and Brian Patrick McGuire.

For full details, see

Conferences, Lectures & Calls for Papers (Outside UK)

"Optanda erat oblivio": Selection and Loss in Ancient and Medieval Literature

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 25 June 2018)

20-21 December 2018, University of Bari, Italy

Prolepsis Association is delighted to announce its third International Postgraduate conference whose theme will be the mechanisms of selection and loss in ancient and Medieval literary and historical texts. “Optanda erat oblivio” Seneca writes in benef. 5. 25. 2, referring to Tiberius’ wish for forgetfulness. We would like to use this quotation as a starting point for a discussion on the vast number of issues related to memory and oblivion in ancient and Medieval texts. This year the conference will be particularly keen on – but not limited to – the following topics:

Palimpsests, Virtual palimpsests (intertextuality, texts survived in translations, paraphrases and quotations), Material losses in the manuscript tradition, Selection criteria, Places of loss and finding, Damnatio memoriae, Fragmentary literature, Lost known texts, Book circulation (destiny of books), Found unknown texts, Found known texts, Texts survived through pseudo-epigraphy, Ancient witnesses of selection and loss.

The participation in the conference as speaker is open to postgraduate students and early career researchers. To participate is necessary to send an e-mail to by the 25th of June 2017.The e-mail must contain the following pdf attachments:

  • An anonymous abstract of approximately 300 words (excluding references) and in English. You should specify if the abstract is for an oral presentation or a poster.
  • A short academic biography with name and affiliation.

Proposals will be evaluated through double-blind peer review by scholars in the Humanities. The proposal evaluation will be carried out based on the following criteria: consistency, clarity, originality, methods. All abstracts, including those in proposed panels, will be reviewed accepted on their own merits. Please note that this review is anonymous. Your anonymous abstract is the sole basis for judging your proposed paper for acceptance.

Papers should be 20 minutes in length plus 10 minutes for discussion. The languages admitted for the presentation are English, Italian and French. Selected papers will be considered for publication. Italian and French speakers will be required to provide an English handout, power point, and possibly a translation/translated summary of their paper. Proposals for coordinated panels (three papers reaching 90 min. in total, discussion included) and posters are most welcome. Posters should be written in Italian, English or French. Expenses for travel and accommodation will not be covered. For any enquiries write to, we would be glad to help you find solutions.

XXV Finnish Symposium on Late Antiquity: 'Seafaring, Mobility and the Mediterranean in Late Antiquity c.150-700'

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 7 May 2018)

26-27 October 2018, Tvarminne, Finland

The 25th multidisciplinary Finnish Symposium on Late Antiquity will be organized on 26-27 October 2018. The symposium will bring together scholars and postgraduate students with an interest in Late Antiquity from a variety of universities and disciplines (philology, archaeology, history, theology, religious studies, art history etc.). The theme of this year’s symposium is Seafaring, Mobility, and the Mediterranean in Late Antiquity (ca. 150-700 CE), which will be approached from a wide perspective, including social, economic, cultural, religious, ideological, and literary aspects; the symposium will be divided into thematic sessions broadly structured around archaeological, literary, and historical frames of inquiry.

We welcome papers discussing Late Antique seafaring, mobility, and the Mediterranean from any viewpoints, but encourage especially the following themes:

  1. Networks of Communication and Commodification in the Late Antique Mediterranean
  2. Sea as a Metaphor in Late Ancient Literature
  3. The Mediterranean as 'Mare Nostrum'

Please send a short abstract of 250–300 words words, with your name, affiliation, e-mail and paper title, by 7th of May 2018 to Dr Ville Vuolanto: ville.vuolanto(at) Applicants will be informed by the beginning of June 2018 at the latest whether they have been accepted. We have reserved 20 minutes for each presentation, plus 10 minutes for discussion. The symposium will be organized at the zoological research station of the University of Helsinki at Tvärminne, on the southern coast of Finland ( – a suitably maritime venue. The symposium will have a participation fee (20€ from students, 60€ from others), which will include accommodation (one night) at the symposium venue, as well as meals for two days. We offer also the transportation from Helsinki to Tvärminne and the return journey. Registration for the symposium will start on 20 August and will close on 28 September 2018.

The World of the Physiologus – Animal Stories and Representations in Oriental Manuscripts


28-29 June 2018, University of Hamburg, Germany

The Physiologus tells stories about animals and their behaviours, from which Christians can draw moralistic lessons for their life. The history of the Physiologus text and its evolution in Eastern Christian literatures, as well as in medieval Western culture (up to the tradition of the Bestiaries and of the encyclopaedias) is relatively well known; however, in Byzantium itself the text seems to stand in splendid isolation. Even though F. Sbordone and others after him have started to explore the sources used by the Physiologus on the one hand and the traces this text left in later literature on the other, much work must still be done to understand what the Physiologus actually is as a literary object. For this purpose it is necessary to break the walls around the Physiologus and to look beyond, for contextual and parallel materials. As for Greek literature, the "naturalistic" background has been already very much explored, but a more promising ground for research still needs to be excavated: the complex tradition of symbolic, magical, and hermetic literature (mainly produced in Egypt: Horapollon, Cyranides…) on the one hand, exegetical literature on the other hand (especially on the Hexaemeron and the Prophets). As the surrounding cultures have had a major impact on Greek literature and thought, it is very important to extend the research to possible parallels, as Sbordone did by referring sometimes in his edition to Samuel Bochart, Hierozoicon sive bipartitum opus de animalibus sacrae scripturae, London, 1663, 2 vols., a mine of information about animal stories in very many languages, which has not been replaced even though it is totally outdated.

This conference will gather renowned scholars dealing with animal-related stories (both in texts and images) in Hebrew, Arabic, and other manuscript traditions of the East, together with specialists of the Physiologus in Greek and Oriental languages, with the hope of bringing new ideas and insights about the Physiologus and its larger context to light.

For further information, see

Approaches to Greek Compilation Literature from Byzantium (historiographic, spiritual, monastic, gnomologic)


29 May 2018, Univeristy of Leuven, Belgium

In the Greek Middle Ages, the preservation of ancient knowledge and culture was a major concern. This attention was developed in a vast body of literary compilations, which cover a wide range of genres and forms (historiography, exegesis, poetry etc.). Editorial approaches to these compilations reflect the scholarly attitude towards Byzantine literature and culture in general: while up to the twentieth century editors mainly exploited them only to retrieve texts from antiquity or late antiquity, contemporary scholarship more often studies them in their own right as products of a particular society and holds them worthy of being edited in full. This more recent approach is not undisputed from a conceptual point of view. In addition, it runs into several problems, some of which are caused by the complex textual tradition of the compilations and their habit of being related among each other.

This round table, which is organized by LECTIO (Leuven Centre for the Study of the Transmission of Text and Ideas in Antiquity, the Middle Ages and the Renaissance) and its Laboratory for Text Editing, brings together established and young scholars who have hands-on experience in editing Byzantine compilations of various kinds. They will offer reports of their most recent fieldwork and lead the way to a round table discussion, which will allow participants to take part in formulating answers to methodological challenges and conceptual questions.

For full programme and registration, see

Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 20 April 2018)

27-29 September 2018, Warsaw, Poland

The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity is a major 5-year ERC-funded research project, based primarily in Oxford, supported by a team in Warsaw. The project is mapping the cult of saints as a system of beliefs and practices in its earliest and most fluid form, from its origins until around AD 700. Central to the project is a searchable database, in which all the literary, epigraphic, papyrological and documentary evidence for the cult of saints is being collected, whether in Armenian, Coptic, Georgian, Greek, Latin or Syriac. This database, which is continuously being added to, can already be accessed using this link:

On 27-29 September 2018 we are organising a final conference in Warsaw, before the project closes at the end of the year. The topic of the conference is as broad as the project – the cult of saints in Late Antiquity. What we hope to achieve is a broad picture of this phenomenon, and so, although we will welcome papers studying the cult of a specific saint, cultic activity or region, we will give priority to those that set cults and cult practices against the wide background of cultic behaviour and belief, now readily accessible through our database (already operational and filling up fast).

Those interested in presenting papers are requested to send a title and short abstract (c. 100 words) to Robert Wisniewski ( by 20 April 2018. There is no registration fee, but please, note we won’t be able to cover travel and accommodation expenses.

Towards a New Political History of the Court, c. 1200-1800 Delineating Practices of Power in Gender, Culture, and Sociability

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 13 May 2018)

14-16 November 2018, Institut Historique Allemande, Paris, France

Dynastic centres, or courts, played a pivotal role in the state building processes out of which developed our modern political practices and institutions. Yet, for a long time,the court was regarded primarily as the field of anecdotal ‘petite histoire’ and consequently neglected by scholarly research. In recent years, however, the exploration of the dynastic centre made considerable progress, as historians sought to build on, and go beyond, the venerable sociological models of Norbert Elias. The exploration of symbolic communication, patronage, micro-politics, gender, the body, materiality, and transculturality are only some of the innovative approaches that have been brought to bear on the subject of court history and they have produced remarkable results. We now understand that the court was a multifaceted space for innovation in the arts, and sciences, in religious and political thought, as well as a central hub for the deployment of power relationships. But how do these different aspects interact? And how do these new approaches modify our current understanding of, for instance, state-building narratives? Do they suggest new chronologies, and do we consequently have to rewrite traditional textbook narratives in order to reflect these new impulses?

For further details, see

Summer School in Coptic Literature and Manuscript Tradition

17-21 September 2018, Hamburg, Germany

Application Deadline: 31 May 2018

The school aims at training graduate students and junior scholars in methods used in Coptic manuscript studies. Lectures and seminars in topics ranging from Literature to History to Codicology and Cataloguing shall cover the most central aspects of research and help in developing skills necessary for theoretical and practical tasks in the study of manuscripts.

Particular attention will be devoted to the develpment of Coptic Literature, to its “literary genres” and to the geography of Coptic manuscript production. Practical exercises will include analytical description of Coptic manuscripts.

The school is open to students and scholars of all disciplines, but some degree of knowledge of Christian Orient (not necessarily Coptic) as well as experience of study and/or research dealing with one of the oriental traditions is expected. Basic knowledge of the Coptic language is an appreciated prerequisite.

For further information and registration, see

New Light on Old Manuscripts: Recent Advances in Palimpset Studies

International Conference

25-27 April 2018, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, Austria

'New Light on Old Manuscripts: Recent Advances in Palimpsest Studies' brings together an international assembly of scholars who have been in the forefront of the study of erased and re-written parchment manuscripts in recent years, either in reading and analyzing palimpsests texts or in making them legible through advanced imaging and image processing methods.

The conference will also feature work that has been accomplished in the course of the Sinai Palimpsests Project that is now available online ( The Holy Monastery of Saint Catherine is not only the oldest Christian monastery (including its library) in continuous operation, it also contains the world's largest collection of palimpsested manuscripts on parchment. In the course of the Sinai Palimpsests Project—undertaken at the invitation of the Monastery by an international team of camera specialists, image scientists, and textual scholars—more than half of this palimpsest collection was imaged using cutting-edge multispectral photography, rendered legible through innovative methods of computer-based analysis, and the erased texts identified by experts in all the languages of the Christian Orient.

For further details, see

Summer School in Coptic Literature and Manuscript Tradition

17-21 September 2018, Centre for the Study of Manuscript Cultures, Hamburg, Germany

Application deadline: 31 May 2018

The school aims at training graduate students and junior scholars in methods used in Coptic manuscript studies. Lectures and seminars in topics ranging from Literature to History to Codicology and Cataloguing shall cover the most central aspects of research and help in developing skills necessary for theoretical and practical tasks in the study of manuscripts.

Particular attention will be devoted to the develpment of Coptic Literature, to its “literary genres” and to the geography of Coptic manuscript production. Practical exercises will include analytical description of Coptic manuscripts.

The school is open to students and scholars of all disciplines, but some degree of knowledge of Christian Orient (not necessarily Coptic) as well as experience of study and/or research dealing with one of the oriental traditions is expected. Basic knowledge of the Coptic language is an appreciated prerequisite. The class will be taught by internationally acknowledged specialists on the topics of Literature, Bible, Manuscript Tradition, Coptic Church etc.

Further information and how to apply here

Preliminary Considerations on the Corpus Coranicum Christianum. The Quran in Translation – A Survey of the State-of-the-Art

Workshop/Call for Papers (Deadline: 31 May 2018)

5-7 December 2018, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

In this workshop, we aim to lay the groundwork for an interdisciplinary research project, which will focus on comparing the different translations of the Quran made within Christian cultural backgrounds. The project will study the Quran and its reception from the Christian perspective by analyzing all Greek, Syrian, and Latin translations of the Quran from the 7th century CE until the Early Modern period.

The workshop is focused on interdisciplinary research, which will, the organizers hope, encourage fruitful discussions about the state-of-the-art of the field and highlight potential areas for future research cooperation. For this purpose, we welcome abstracts of up to 300 words, to be submitted in English by May 31st, 2018 to: Abstracts should include your name, affiliation, position, the title of the proposed paper, your specific source(s) you want to work on, and a brief curriculum vitae. Please also indicate the preferred section (see above: CCB, CCS, CCL, DH). Notifications will be sent out in June 2018. Full papers should be submitted by 15th November, 2018. Limited funding will be available for accommodation and/or travel. Proposed workshop languages: English, German, Spanish, and French. Papers will be published as edited volume.

The project initiative Corpus Coranicum Christianum is financed by the Presidency of the Freie Universität Berlin. For further information about the structure of the planned project and for a more detailed Call for Papers, please visit our website.

Shifting Frontiers in Late Antiquity: "Communal Responses to Local Disaster: Economic, Environmental, Political, Religious

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 1 October 2018)

14-17 March 2019, Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, California

The Society for Late Antiquity is pleased to announce the 13th biennial meeting of Shifting Frontiers in Late Antiquity, to be held at Claremont McKenna College, in Claremont, California. Specialists in art and archaeology, literature and philology, history and religious studies, working on topics from the 3rd to the 8th century CE, are invited to submit paper proposals. Scholars with any related interest are invited to attend.

The 2019 meeting will examine the impact of disasters on late-antique communities, including their susceptibility to disaster, the means by which they coped, and factors that increased resilience and facilitated recovery from disasters. In order to foster the thematic breadth and interdisciplinary perspective for which Shifting Frontiers is known, we invite papers concerned with the full range of traumatic events, and also long-term processes, that could distress communities: economic, environmental, political and religious. The aim of this conference is to move beyond the descriptive and stimulate analytical and theoretical approaches to understanding how distressed communities behaved in the short and long term.

For full details, see

Understanding Hagiography and its Textual Tradition: the Late Antique and the Early Medieval Period (6th-11th centuries)

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 30 May 2018)

24-26 October 2018, Lisbon, Portugal

Between the sixth and the eleventh century, passions, lives of saints, translations of relics, miracles and other hagiographical genres underwent a remarkable process of transmission and rewriting. This conference aims at producing a fresh look at the transmission and the evolution of these crucial pieces of the spiritual and cultural life in the early Middle Ages. It will explore manuscript and textual traditions and literary reshaping, both in the history of the hagiographic genre and in the evolutionary process of the specific texts, without overlooking their function as pieces of a cult or simply of edification.

For the full call for papers, see

The Byzantine Liturgy and the Jews

Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 1 July 2018)

9-11 July 2019, Sibiu, Romania

Anti-Jewish elements have persisted in the Byzantine liturgy for over a thousand years in areas under the influence of the Eastern Christian Empire. These elements have spread through translation from Byzantium to all countries and cultures which worship today according to the Byzantine rite. Despite the profound theological and liturgical changes that have taken place in the second half of the 20th century in Western Christianity, hymns that were composed in the polemical context of the 8th -9th centuries are still used today in Eastern countries and in the Christian Orthodox Communities of the diaspora.

The conference with the topic Byzantine liturgy and the Jews addresses the issue of liturgical anti-Judaism from various perspectives, in order to provide the necessary tools so that we can better understand this reality:

Historical-criticism – which hymns fall within this discussion? When were these texts included in the liturgy and what were the overall social and political contexts in which they were written? What differences can one identify between original versions and translated ones and what are the aspects that have led to innovation in translating these texts? And how do texts with Byzantine anti-Jewish elements differ from analogous texts from the Syriac, Coptic, Armenian and Georgian traditions?

Patristic and liturgical approach – which is the role of hymns within the liturgical structure? What is the relationship between hymnography and homilies and other patristic writings? To what extent can one identify a patristic origin of certain anti-Jewish topoi and how did this very fact assure their transmission in worship? And what can be said about the image of the Jews in Byzantine iconography and their possible relation with hymnographic texts?

Theological approach – what kind of relationship is there between biblical statements regarding Israel and anti- Jewish hymnography? What is truly anti-Jewish in the Byzantine rite? Which are the criteria that would guide us today in evaluating liturgical texts from this perspective?

Socio-cultural impact – to what extent can one follow how these hymns reflect, consolidate and modify the mentalities of given religious communities?

Presentation abstracts of no more than 200 words should be sent to: Deadline: July 1, 2018. Papers may be presented in English and German. Conference proceedings will be published in the Peter Lang’s Edition Israelogie series. Financial support may be available upon consultation with the organisers.

Byzantine Greek Summer School

9–27 July 2018, Bogazici University, Istanbul

Application deadline: 30 April 2018
The Byzantine Studies Research Center is pleased to announce the organization of its second Byzantine Greek Summer School program to be held at Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey, from July 9 to July 27, 2018. Students will have the chance to participate in an intensive program in Medieval Greek with Prof. Niels Gaul and Dr. Athanasia Stavrou, while enjoying various attractions of the Bogazici University campus on the Bosphorus and the Byzantine sites of Istanbul.
For more information, please see:

Akropolis: Journal of Hellenic Studies

Call for articles (Deadline: 1 September 2018)

Akropolis: Journal of Hellenic Studies is now accepting submissions for volume 2 (2018). The deadline for submissions is 1st September.

Please submit your articles for review through our online submission system and prepare you articles in accordance with the instructions:

Topographies in Motion: Urban Movement and Mobility in Late Antiquity (4th to 6th Centuries)

Workshop/Call for papers (deadline: 23 February 2018)

4-5 October 2018,  LMU Munich, Austria

What defines a late-antique city? For some years, scholars have debated this question starting from infrastructure, monuments, squares etc. In this perspective, cities appear as rather static environments and as vessels, as it were, for urban activity and life to take place. More recent research, however, is emphasizing performative aspects of the antique city. Primarily with respect to republican and post-republican times, urban movement and mobility have become a key for understanding how human life within antique cities unfolded and how this motion created and altered urban spaces.

This workshop asks how late-antique urban topographies were constituted, shaped, and changed by societies, people(s), objects, and goods moving through these cities and across their boundaries. More specifically, the workshop pursues a case-by-case approach. We are interested in case studies and contributions that examine particular practices in specific cities from across the late-antique Roman Empire. Through the lenses of movement and mobility, applicants may consider the making and un-making of (different kinds of) urban spaces, their religious, social, or economic meaning, their symbolic value, or their function as means of representation and performance. While scholars are encouraged to draw on all relevant types of sources, individual cases should be discussed in dialogue or contrast with the respective urban topographies.

Forms of urban movement and mobility to consider may include:

  • Spatial mobility of objects and artefacts (e.g. images, religious objects, statues)
  • Private and communal urban movement
  • The role of religion for urban movement and mobility
  • Commercial movement and the mobility of goods
  • Traffic routes and their impact on urban and suburban movement and mobility
  • Mobility (spatial and social) and the boundary between city and countryside

We encourage submissions both from established scholars as well as younger colleagues working in all relevant disciplines (e.g. history, archaeology, religious studies and church history, art history, literature). Simon Malmberg (Classical Archaeology, Bergen) will be giving the keynote lecture.

Applicants are invited to submit a short CV and an abstract for a paper of 20 minutes. Please submit your application by 23 February 2018 to Florian Wöller (

The workshop will be hosted at the Center for Advanced Studies (CAS) at LMU Munich. Travel and accommodation expenses can be reimbursed up to a certain amount. For any questions, please write to Florian Wöller (

From Homer to Hatzi-Yavrouda – Aspects of oral narration in the Greek tradition

Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 1 May 2018)

29-30 September 2018, The Danish Institute at Athens, Greece

In European culture, literature has been orally created and diffused as a parallel to written literature, but until rather recently the two traditions have mostly been studied separately. However, there is a closer interrelationship between the two, and it is not just the orally diffused folk literature that is inspired by the written high-culture literature. It is also vice versa. Therefore, the conference will start with the question: What is orality?

We wish to study orality from different genres and periods within the Greek tradition and from different academic fields, as e.g. classical philology, byzantine studies, folklore, and comparative literature. Proposals in all these fields are welcome as are proposals addressing the interrelationship between oral and written literature, or the influence from and to other cultures. For the modern period special focus will be given to the folktale.

For details, download the call for papers.

Novel Saints. Novel, Hagiography and Romance from the 4th to the 12th Century

International conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 15 April 2018)

22-24 November 2018, Het Pand, Ghent, Belgium

The early history of the novel has not been written yet. The oldest representatives of this genre (also called ‘ancient romances’ in scholarship) were written in Latin and Greek in the first few centuries of the Common Era. Often, scholars have observed an interim period between the fourth and twelfth centuries from which no novels are said to have been preserved, and identify a so-called ‘re-emergence’ of the genre in Byzantium. Building on recent research that studies hagiography as literature, this conference of the ERC project Novel Saints (Ghent University) aims to challenge this view by studying hagiography as a continuation of novelistic literature during the so-called ‘dark age’ of the novel.

The conference aims to examine the persistence of ancient novelistic material in hagiography and instances of continuity of novelistic and/or hagiographical strands in medieval romances in the West, Byzantium and Persia.

For details, download the call for papers.

The Forty-Fourth Annual Byzantine Studies Conference

Call for papers (Deadline: 15 March 2018)

4-7 October 2018, San Antonio, Texas, USA

The Forty-fourth Annual Byzantine Studies Conference (BSC) will be held in San Antonio, Texas, from Thursday evening, October 4th through Sunday afternoon, October 7th. For information on BSANA, please consult the BSANA website,; for details on the conference, please consult the 2018 BSC website,, which will be further updated as new information becomes available.

The BSC is the annual forum for the presentation and discussion of papers on every aspect of Byzantine Studies, and is open to all, regardless of nationality or academic status. It is also the occasion of the annual meeting of the Byzantine Studies Association of North America (BSANA), conducted by its officers.

For further details, download the call for papers.

New Research on Ancient Armenia

Workshop for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Researcher/Call for papers (deadline: 15 February 2018)

8 June 2018, University of Geneva, Switzerland

The Armenian Studies team (Unité d’arménien) at the MESLO Department, University of Geneva, is pleased to invite graduate students and early career researchers (not yet holding a permanent position in Academia) to present their current research on any aspect of Ancient and Medieval Armenia to an audience of their peers. The workshop has been conceived as an international forum in which the newest generation of researchers in the field can engage in meaningful discussion on methodologies, problems and perspectives. Presentations detailing work in progress, research projects, and innovative approaches are welcome. In the interest of drawing attention to comparatively less-known topics, preference may be given to subjects other than ‘Classical’ 5th-century language, literature, history and art.

Each participant will have 20 minutes to present his/her paper, plus 10 minutes for questions and discussion. Applicants are invited to submit a title, short abstract (no more than 300 words) and a brief academic biography by 15 February 2018. Please send your documents as .pdf files to:

Limited grants are available to assist with travel and accommodation expenses: those who cannot obtain financial support from their home institution and would otherwise be unable to attend are invited to submit a short statement in support of their request along with their abstracts. Applications for grants of up to 300 CHF each will be considered (to be paid after the workshop). The organizers reserve the right to make decisions on the matter at their sole discretion.

For any clarifications, please do not hesitate to contact Dr Irene Tinti (

'John Tzetzes'

Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 31 January 2018)

7-8 September 2018, Ca’ Foscari, Venice

John Tzetzes was a towering figure in the scholarly landscape of twelfth-century Constantinople, and his name crops up time and again in modern scholarship, Classical and Byzantine alike. He commented extensively on poets such as Homer, Hesiod, Aristophanes, and the intractable Lycophron. He is a source of the greatest importance for the history and transmission of scholarship in antiquity. He had access to works that are lost to us; he may have been the last person to read Hipponax at first hand before the age of papyrological discoveries.

Gifted with a cantankerous personality which he made no attempt to conceal, he had a very high opinion of his own worth as a scholar and a correspondingly low opinion of almost everybody else’s. He was the sort of person who would pepper his letters with erudite references, then compose an enormous poem to elucidate them and write scholia to it. His idiosyncratic writerly persona has made him an easy target for the irony of twentieth-century scholars; Martin West dubbed him a ’lovable buffoon’, and he was kinder to him than others.

It is all too easy, especially for classicists, not to see beyond a combination of Tzetzes the caricature and Tzetzes the footnote fodder; someone to use without engaging too closely. But his vast learning and the variety and influence of his writings demands a more discerning attention. The past few decades have witnessed an increasing interest in his works, with several editions (and more in progress), a steady flow of articles, and even a few translations into modern languages. The time is ripe for scholars in classical and Byzantine studies to join forces towards a better understanding of Tzetzes and his output.

The colloquium will take place in the scenic Aula Baratto of Ca’ Foscari University, overlooking the Grand Canal, on 7th and 8th September 2018. Abstracts of no more than 400 words should be sent by email, preferably in PDF format, to by 31st January 2018. Speakers will be offered accommodation and a contribution to travel expenses can also be made available. The colloquium is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement no. 708556 (Ancient scholarship on archaic Greek iambic poetry / ASAGIP).

Twenty-Second Biennial Conference of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric

Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 11 May 2018)

23-27 July 2019, New Orleans, LA, USA

The Society calls for twenty-minute conference papers focusing on historical aspects of the theory and practice of rhetoric. This year’s specific conference theme or focus is “populism.” From its beginnings, rhetoric has been criticized for its perceived focus on manipulation of popular thought and emotions. Rhetoric can thus be easily associated with “populism,” a political concept describing movements, both left and right, that vigorously claim to champion the interests of “the people” against those of privileged elites. From the Greeks to contemporary politics, many aspects of rhetorical theory and practice can be viewed in this light, whether in ideologically charged argumentation, in popular modes of style, or in delivery. At the same time, the concept of populism itself can be contested. Finally, the reaction to perceived populism is a rhetorical study in its own right.

For full details, see

Armenian Studies Summer School

29 July-18 August 2018, Yerevan, Armenia

Application deadline: 20 April 2018

After organizing 3 Armenian Studies Summer Schools and 2 Armenian Language winter schools in Armenia ARMACAD is now pleased to announce its fourth International Armenian Studies Summer School with special focus on modern Eastern Armenian in Yerevan, Armenia to take place from July 29, 2018 to August 18, 2018. This 21 days summer school offers participants to master skills in written and oral modern Armenian, reading and interpreting Armenian texts from different periods as well as rapidly deepening their knowledge in colloquial Armenian. During the summer school 2 cultural trips will be offered, which will transform your stay in Armenia into an unforgettable, academically oriented endeavor.

This school is designed for students, at least 18 years-old, who not only want to make well-grounded progress in their knowledge of the Eastern Armenian language, but also to deepen their knowledge of Armenian Studies and Armenia. It offers an intensive Armenian language course spanning 60 hours, divided into 15 days of instruction and focusing on grammar, reading, speaking, and writing. Another 10 hours is devoted to lectures on Armenian literature and history.

For full details, see

Byzantium and the Modern Imagination: Patterns of the Reception of Byzantium in Modern Culture

Conference/Call for Papers (deadline: 30 March 2018)

12-14 September 2018, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic

The imagery of Byzantium in popular discourse is a culturally and historically constructed notion. As has been noted, the very name “Byzantium” is both a retronym and an exonym, and scholars today very often insist on using a more proper description – “The Eastern Roman Empire”. Writers, playwrights, musicians, and politicians throughout centuries constructed their own versions of Byzantium, which depended on local artistic or political needs. In many cases these constructed versions had very little to do with the “historical” Byzantium. Yet, at the same time, academic discourse might – and did – influence the imagery of Byzantium in the popular imagination. During the conference we would like to discuss these imaginary visions of Byzantium, including the intersections of popular and academic images of Byzantium. We also welcome papers dealing with the use (and abuse) of key events in Byzantine history (such as the Fall of City) and their reworkings in literature and culture.

For details, download the full Call for Papers.

Iconography of Pain

Twelfth International Conference of Iconographic Studies/Call for papers (deadline: 20 January 2018)

31 May-1 June 2018, Rijeka, Croatia

The conference seeks to explore and discuss recent development in the dialogue between art history, history, theology, philosophy, cultural theory and other relevant disciplines concerning the representation and perception of pain (both physical and emotional) in history. Pain represents not only one of the very used subjects in art but also the strong creative force for many artists. It has been recently discussed as being a transformative force in cultural production but also beyond the cultural and temporal boundaries. It can be also perceived within specific methodological paradigm of the Warburg's Pathosformel as well as within the broader theoretical contexts. We welcome academic papers that will approach these subjects in interdisciplinary and methodologically diverse angles.

For full details, download the Call for Papers.

Cyprus: a place and topos in ancient literature

Conference/Call for papers (deadline: 15 January 2018)

21-22 September 2018, Athens

Whether it was love, war, struggle or simply a breathtaking landscape that inspired authors in antiquity, Cyprus had it all. Greek and Latin literature abounds with references to the island: the land of kings and heroes and, most importantly, the birthplace of Aphrodite/Venus, Cyprus offers to ancient authors numerous sources of inspiration - Teucer, Evagoras, Pygmalion, Cinyras, Myrrha, Adonis, to name but a few. At the same time, Cyprus the place has a unique cultural identity, shaped under the multiple interrelations, contacts and assimilations of indigenous Cypriot, Greek, and Eastern elements. Similar is the shaping of the linguistic landscape of the island.

Although the presence of Cyprus in literature is evident, a systematic exploration of the literary character and the role of the island in classical literature has not appeared yet. In addition, there is still much to be said about the literary production in Cyprus. The recent launch of the ‘Digital Ancient Cypriot Literature’ as part of Dioptra ( enables classicists to assess a variety of sources which shape the literary culture of Cyprus. Motivated by this recent development, this conference invites contributions to the following suggested topics:

  • the poetic exploitation of Cyprus (as a place or theme);
  • the literary landscape and production in Cyprus from the archaic period up to the Late Antiquity;
  • Cyprus as a possible literary topos;
  • the perception of Cyprus as place: references to, and descriptions of, the island and its habitants;
  • reception of Cypriot themes and traditions in classical literature.

Papers may engage with literary genres of any period up to the Late Antiquity, including inscriptions. PhD students and early career researchers as well as members of under-represented groups are encouraged to participate. The papers shall be in English or any other major European language, provided that an English translation is supplied.

The Conference will take place on September 21-22, 2018, in Athens, Greece. Details on keynote speakers, accommodation, travel, and registration (subject to funding) will be announced in due course. Informal questions/enquiries can be addressed to Andreas Gavrielatos ( Selected papers will be considered for publication in an edited volume (after peer-review). Abstracts of no more than 300 words can be submitted by January 15, 2018, to any (or all) of the members of the organising committee: Amfilochios Papathomas (, Andreas Gavrielatos (, Grammatiki Karla (, Katerina Carvounis (

Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 31 December 2017)

June 18-20, 2018, Saint Louis University, Saint Louis, Missouri, USA

The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies (June 18-20, 2018) is a convenient summer venue for scholars from around the world to present papers, organize sessions, participate in roundtables, and engage in interdisciplinary discussion. The goal of the Symposium is to promote serious scholarly investigation into all topics and in all disciplines of medieval and early modern studies.

The plenary speakers for this year will be Geoffrey Parker of The Ohio State University, and Carole Hillenbrand of the University of St Andrews.

The Symposium is held annually on the beautiful midtown campus of Saint Louis University. On-campus housing options include affordable, air-conditioned apartments as well as a luxurious boutique hotel. Inexpensive meal plans are available, and there is also a wealth of restaurants, bars, and cultural venues within easy walking distance of campus. While attending the Symposium participants are free to use the Vatican Film Library, the Rare Book and Manuscripts Collection, and the general collection at Saint Louis University's Pius XII Memorial Library.

The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies invites proposals for papers, complete sessions, and roundtables. Any topics regarding the scholarly investigation of the medieval and early modern world are welcome. Papers are normally twenty minutes each and sessions are scheduled for ninety minutes. Scholarly organizations are especially encouraged to sponsor proposals for complete sessions.

The deadline for all submissions is December 31. Decisions will be made in January and the final program will be published in February. For more information or to submit your proposal online go to:

Byzantine Poetry in the ‘Long’ Twelfth Century (1081-1204) Perceptions, Motivations and Functions

Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 15 October 2017)

Austrian Academy of Sciences, 13-15 June 2018, Vienna

The time span between the ascension of Alexios I Komnenos to the throne (1081) and the fall of Constantinople to the Latins (1204) is marked by striking historical and socio-cultural developments that influenced many aspects of the contemporary literary production. This holds true especially for texts written in verse, the production of which is much larger than in any other century in middle and late Byzantine times. The twelfth century can thus be described as the ‘golden age’ of Byzantine poetry, since it flourished throughout the entire period both in Constantinople and the periphery of the empire (e.g. Southern Italy, and Athens in the late twelfth century). However, it is not only its amount that determines the significant place of Komnenian poetry in Byzantine literary and social culture. Many literary novelties are closely associated with the poetry of this period, such as the unprecedented use  of literature for ceremonial and didactic purposes at the court, or the emergence of vernacular works. While the poetry of this period maintains many features of texts written in other periods, at the same time it undergoes a transformation acquiring a distinguished character. Even though many texts have received due scholarly attention, our picture of poetic  production is still vague and fragmentary.

For further details, see the full call for papers.

Armenia & Byzantium without Borders

Graduate and Early Career Workshop/Call for papers (closes 31 October 2017)

20-22 April 2018, University of Vienna, Austria

Within the framework of ‘Moving Byzantium: Mobility, Microstructure and Personal Agency,’ a five-year project begun at the University of Vienna in 2016 and funded through the Wittgenstein-Prize (, ‘Armenia & Byzantium without Borders’ is a three-day workshop focussing on social and cultural mobility between Armenia and Byzantium in the Middle Ages. This workshop continues a scholarly conversation initiated in March 2017 at the University of Uppsala where a study-day dedicated to ‘Narrative Exchanges between Byzantium and Armenia’ was organized by AnnaLinden Weller within the Uppsala/Paris ‘Text and Narrative in Byzantium’ project.

We invite advanced PhD candidates and early career scholars working in the fields of Late Antique, Armenian, Byzantine, and Middle Eastern Studies to submit proposals for 20 min. papers connected with the main topics of ‘Moving Byzantium’, with a focus on aspects of social and cultural mobility of persons, objects, and/or ideas between Armenia and Byzantium throughout the Middle Ages. We are particularly interested in new research showing interaction and communication on both literary and material grounds between the Byzantine world and the Armenians. Each paper presented at the workshop will be accompanied by a senior scholar’s 10 min. response, followed by a general discussion. The workshop will be inaugurated with the lecture of our keynote speaker, Prof. Bernard Coulie (Catholic University of Louvain), and will include a visit to the Mekhitarist Monastery of Vienna and a guided tour of the exhibition on ‘Byzantium and the West’ at the Schallaburg Castle.

Travel and accommodation expenses of scholars selected for presentation at the workshop will be covered by a generous grant of the ‘Moving Byzantium’ project. Paper proposals should be sent by the 31st of October 2017 to Emilio Bonfiglio: Applications will include:a) university affiliation; b) graduate level; c) title of the paper; d) abstract (max 250 words); e) CV.

Convenors: Dr. Emilio Bonfiglio and Prof. Claudia Rapp

What’s So Funny? Discovering and Interpreting Humor in the Ancient World

Conference/Call for papers (closes 30 November 2017)

20-21 April 2018 The Ohio State University Columbus, Ohio

Humor is a ubiquitous human phenomenon with a wide range of applications. Yet, what is deemed humorous is often culturally determined. This poses a significant challenge for scholars of ancient cultures. How do we identify what an ancient culture found funny? How did they use humor, and what drove their usage? The purpose of this conference is to provide a forum for scholars across disciplines to discuss and debate humor and its functions in both textual and material sources across the ancient Mediterranean, from the early Near East through late antiquity. We invite papers that address the above questions, or any others, on the topic of humor in an ancient Mediterranean context.

Possible topics include: Theoretical models for identifying and understanding humor and comedy in ancient cultures • Ancient definitions and theories of humor • Humor in political discourse, including propaganda, competition, and resistance • The role of humor in religion and ritual • Humor and social taboo: obscenities, scatology, and transgressive behaviors • Women, sexuality, and gender as sites of humor • Humor and social boundaries: elite and popular, native and foreign, center and periphery, divine and mortal, and other lines of membership • Humor’s function in narrative and in the relationship between storyteller and audience • Humor as entertainment in daily life, including inscriptions, performance, and celebration Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be submitted by email to by 30 November 2017. Please include “Humor Conference Abstract” and your name in the subject line.

Graduate and Early Career Workshop: 'Armenia & Byzantium without Borders'

Workshop/Call for papers (closes 31 December 2017)

20-22 April 2018, Vienna, Austria

We invite advanced PhD candidates and early career scholars working in the fields of Late Antique, Armenian, Byzantine, and Middle Eastern Studies to submit proposals for 20 min. papers for a three-day workshop on ‘Armenia & Byzantium without Borders’ that will take place in Vienna (20–22 April 2018).

Proposals should focus on aspects of social and cultural mobility of persons, objects, and/or ideas between Armenia and Byzantium throughout the Middle Ages. We are particularly interested in new research showing
interaction and communication on both literary and material grounds between the Byzantine world and the Armenians. Travel and accommodation expenses of scholars selected for presentation at the workshop will be covered by a generous grant of the ‘Moving Byzantium’ project.

Further information can be found in the attached document and at:
Paper proposals should be sent by the 31st of October 2017 to Dr. Emilio Bonfiglio: Applications will include: a) university affiliation; b) graduate level; c) title of the paper; d) abstract (max 250 words); e) CV.

Neighbours or Strangers? Conflict, Negotiation, and Collaboration in Multicultural Communities Passages from Antiquity to the Middle Ages VII

Conference/Call for Papers (closes 31 October 2017)

23-25 August 2018, University of Tampere, Finland

Questions of toleration, aggression and even hatred based on ethnic diversity have been accentuated in recent times, but multiculturalism in its various forms is far from being confined to the modern world only. The seventh international Passages from Antiquity to the Middle Ages conference will focus on forms of interaction and methods of negotiation in multicultural, multiethnic, and multilingual contexts.

The conference aims at concentrating on social and cultural interaction within and between multi-ethnic and multilingual communities, groups and individuals, minority (minorities) and majority. Cooperation, toleration, and coexistence was an everyday necessity in Ancient and medieval societies. On occasion, however, these would turn into the opposite: suspicion, conflict, and violence, enhanced by power struggles and prejudices. All these had a central influence on social dynamics, negotiations of collective or individual identity, definitions of ethnicity, and shaping of legal rules. What was the function of multicultural and multilingual interaction in various contexts: did it create and increase conflicts, or was it rather a prerequisite for survival and prosperity?

Our focus lies on society and the history of everyday life. We welcome papers, which have a sensitive approach to social differences: gender, status, and ethnicity. Actors, experiences, and various levels of negotiations are of main interest. We aim at a broad coverage not only chronologically but also geographically and disciplinarily (all branches of Classical, Byzantine and Medieval Studies). Most preferable are contributions that have themselves a comparative and/or interdisciplinary viewpoint or focusing on a longue durée perspective.

For full details, see the