Worth Their Weight In Gold: The Significance of Lead Seals to Byzantine Studies

Worth Their Weight In Gold: The Significance of Lead Seals to Byzantine Studies

October 28, 2021 5:00-6:30pm EDT
Virtual Public Lecture with Alicia Walker


Byzantine sigillography is a specialized subdivision of an already esoteric field. Yet this seeming obscurity belies the substantial interdisciplinary value of lead seals. The iconographic, inscriptional, and functional aspects of these objects offer unique perspectives on diverse areas of interest, both within the study of Byzantine society and with respect to medieval intercultural dynamics. In this lecture, Alicia Walker presents Byzantine sigillography as a rich domain for interdisciplinary investigation and collaboration, highlighting lead seals as a nexus for exchange among the various fields of Byzantine studies and a vital conduit for contributions to medieval studies more broadly.

Alicia Walker (PhD, Harvard University) is professor of medieval art and architecture at Bryn Mawr College. Her primary fields of research are cross-cultural artistic interaction in the medieval world from the ninth to the thirteenth century and gender issues in the art and material culture of Byzantium. Her first monograph, The Emperor and the World: Exotic Elements and the Imaging of Middle Byzantine Imperial Power, Ninth to Thirteenth Centuries CE, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2012. She is coeditor of the essay collection Negotiating Secular and Sacred in Medieval Art: Christian, Islamic, and Buddhist (Ashgate, 2009), and the special issue of the journal Medieval Encounters entitled Mechanisms of Exchange: Transmission in Medieval Art and Architecture of the Mediterranean, ca. 1000–1500 (Brill, 2012, vol. 18, no. 4­–5). She is an alumna of the Dumbarton Oaks Byzantine coins and seals summer program and her research on exotic motifs in Byzantine lead seals has appeared in The Medieval History Journal.

Image: Joseph imperial spatharios and kommerkiarios, tenth century, 25 mm diam. Dumbarton Oaks, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, bequest of Thomas Whittemore, 1951.31.5.1778

Le Psautier de Paris (BNF, Grec 139)

Colloque international, 2 et 3 juillet 2021:


Pour télécharger le programme, Cliquer ici 

Inscription obligatoire avant le 30 juin 2021 :http://www.chartes.psl.eu/fr/psautier-paris-bnf-grec-139

Le lien pour la visioconférence sera envoyé la veille du colloque uniquement aux personnes inscrites.

En raison des limitations imposées par la situation sanitaire Covid-19, l’accès à la salle de conférence sera réservé aux seuls intervenantes et intervenants. Lieu : École nationale des chartes, 65 rue de Richelieu, 75002 Paris.

L’organisation de ce colloque a été rendue possible notamment par un financement du Fonds d’intervention pour la recherche de Sorbonne Université. Nous remercions également les autres institutions organisatrices pour leur soutien financier (UMR 8167 Orient et Méditerranée, Istituto Ellenico di Venezia, association THAT) et pour l’accueil dans leurs locaux associé à leur aide logistique (École nationale des chartes, Bibliothèque nationale de France).


Sacred Spaces : Churches and Mosques within the society

Le Centre  « RomanIslam Center for Comparative Empire and Transcultural Studies » à  Universität Hamburg vous invite à écouter deux conférenciers invitées :

  • Ann Marie Yasin (University of Southern California) : « Blocked Passageways: An Exploration of Somatic Time in ‘Converted’ Buildings »
  • Stephennie Mulder (The University of Texas Austin) : « The Past as Presence: Christians, Muslims, and the Generation of Sacred Topography in Medieval Syria »

16 juin, 17h00-19h00 sur Zoom. 

Pour le lien Zoom, écrire à : romanislam@uni-hamburg.de . 

Cliquer ici pour plus d’informations et pour les résumés des conférences.

The Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar

« The Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar, in association with Oxford Medieval Studies
The Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar is a new initiative funded by the Oxford Medieval Studies programme of the Oxford Research Institute in the Humanities (TORCH). It is designed to showcase the breadth of graduate research in modern Late Antique and Byzantine Studies and to foster academic collaboration across institutions and sub-disciplines.
The Seminar will take place weekly via Zoom on Mondays at 12.30-14.00. The speaker will present for 40-45 minutes, followed by audience questions and discussion.
To register and for further information, please contact the organiser at james.cogbill@worc.ox.ac.uk. »

Monday 26th April 

Katherine Krauss (Somerville College, Oxford), Rereading the ‘Canon’ in Latin Late Antiquity: Exemplarity and Allusion in Macrobius’ Saturnalia 

Monday 3rd May 

Alessandro Carabia (University of Birmingham), Defining the ‘Byzantine Variable’ in Early Byzantine Italy: The Case of Liguria (500-700 CE) 

Monday 10th May 

Cristina Cocola (Universiteit Gent & Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven), Feeling Repentance in Byzantium: A Study on the Literary Sources of Katanyktic Poetry 

Monday 17th May 

Ben Kybett (Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge), Themistius and the Muses: Religion, Rhetoric, and Classical Statuary in Fourth-Century Constantinople 

Monday 24th May 

Grace Stafford (Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz), Between the Living and the Dead: Use, Reuse, and Imitation of Painted Portraits in Late Antiquity 

Monday 31st May 

Josh Hitt (St. Hilda’s College, Oxford), Ageing, Rejuvenation and Patronage in Twelfth-Century Byzantium 

Monday 7th June 

Constanța Burlacu (Merton College, Oxford), Monastic Presence and Book Circulation in the Lands North of the Danube (15th-16th Centuries) 

Monday 14th June 

Kyriakos Fragkoulis (University of Birmingham), (Re)contextualising a Late Antique City through the Ceramic Record: The Case of Dion in Macedonia (Pieria, Greece)