Rome, Constantinople and Newly

Rome, Constantinople
and
Newly-Converted Europe
Archaeological and Historical Evidence
Volume I
U ŹRÓDEŁ EUROPY ŚRODKOWO-WSCHODNIEJ / FRÜHZEIT OSTMITTELEUROPAS
Geisteswissenschaftliches Zentrum Geschichte und Kultur Ostmitteleuropas, Leipzig
Instytut Archeologii i Etnologii Polskiej Akademii Nauk, Warszawa
Instytut Archeologii Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego, Rzeszów
Rada Redakcyjna / Herausgebergremium
Andrzej Buko, Christian Lübke, Małgorzata Rybicka
Redakcja Serii / Redaktion der Reihe
Matthias Hardt, Marcin Wołoszyn
tom 1, część 1 / Band 1, Teil 1
Rome, Constantinople
and
Newly-Converted Europe
Archaeological and Historical Evidence
edited by
Maciej Salamon, Marcin Wołoszyn, Alexander Musin, Perica Špehar
in cooperation with
Matthias Hardt, Mirosław P. Kruk, Aleksandra Sulikowska-Gąska
Kraków – Leipzig – Rzeszów – Warszawa 2012
U ŹRÓDEŁ EUROPY ŚRODKOWO-WSCHODNIEJ / FRÜHZEIT OSTMITTELEUROPAS
Geisteswissenschaftliches Zentrum Geschichte und Kultur Ostmitteleuropas e.V., Leipzig
Instytut Archeologii i Etnologii Polskiej Akademii Nauk, Warszawa
Instytut Archeologii Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego, Rzeszów
Redakcja tomu / Redaktion des Bandes
Maciej Salamon, Marcin Wołoszyn, Alexander Musin, Perica Špehar,
Matthias Hardt, Mirosław P. Kruk, Aleksandra Sulikowska-Gąska
Recenzenci tomu / Rezensenten des Bandes
Eduard Mühle, Günther Prinzing
Tłumaczenia / Übersetzungen
Autorzy / Autoren, Alexey Gilevich, Monika Dzik oraz / sowie
Anna Kinecka (j. angielski / Englisch), Katarzyna Łyp (j. niemiecki / Deutsch),
Alexander Musin (j. rosyjski / Russisch)
Weryfikacja językowa / Sprachverifizierung
Marcin Bednarz, Anna Kinecka, Doris Wollenberg
Skład / Layout
Irena Jordan
Obróbka graficzna / Graphik
Autorzy / Autoren oraz / sowie Irena Jordan,
przy udziale / unter Mitwirkung von Jolanta Ożóg, Rafał Janicki
Projekt okładki / Layout des Umschlages
Irena Jordan, Rafał Janicki
Zdjęcie na okładce / Photo auf dem Umschlag
Bizantyńska stauroteka (X / XI w.) z Ostrowa Lednickiego,
zbiory Muzeum Pierwszych Piastów na Lednicy (Foto: R. Kujawa)
Byzantinische Staurothek (10. / 11. Jh.) aus Ostrów Lednicki,
Sammlungen des Muzeum Pierwszych Piastów na Lednicy (Photo: R. Kujawa)
Druk tomu I / Druck von Band I
Poligrafia Inspektoratu Towarzystwa Salezjańskiego, Kraków
Dystrybucja / Distribution
Leipziger Universitätsverlag
Instytut Archeologii i Etnologii Polskiej Akademii Nauk
Instytut Archeologii Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego
© Copyright by Geisteswissenschaftliches Zentrum Geschichte und Kultur Ostmitteleuropas e.V., Leipzig 2012
© Copyright by Instytut Archeologii i Etnologii Polskiej Akademii Nauk, Warszawa 2012
© Copyright by Instytut Archeologii Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego, Rzeszów 2012
ISBN: 978-3-86583-659-5
ISBN: 978-83-89499-85-1
ISBN: 978-83-936467-0-8
The present volume is the result of cooperation of institutions named here:
Polish Academy of Sciences
Committee for the Research in Antique Culture
Byzantine Commission = National Committee of the AIEB
Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology
Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw
Leipzig Centre for History and Culture
of East Central Europe (GWZO), Leipzig
Institute of History
Jagiellonian University, Cracow
Institute of Archaeology
University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów
Institute for the History of Material Culture
Russian Academy of Sciences, Saint Petersburg
Institute of Archaeology
Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Belgrade
Sponsored by:
CONTENTS
Editors’ Foreword ............................................................................................................................................................. 17
Jonathan Shepard
Rome, Constantinople and Newly-Converted Europe: Archaeological and Historical Evidence.
Some Introductory Remarks ............................................................................................................................................ 23
I.1 HISTORY:
ROME, CONSTANTINOPLE AND THE NEW BORDERS
THE INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS
Jerzy Strzelczyk
Missionsstrategie und Missionspraxis der westlichen Kirche im frühen Mittelalter ...................................................... 33
Maciej Salamon
Byzantine Missionary Policy. Did It Exist? ..................................................................................................................... 43
Matthias Hardt
Frühe Grenzen im Blick der europäischen Mediävistik .................................................................................................. 55
I.2 HISTORY:
SEARCHING FOR ROME AND CONSTANTINOPLE
FROM THE SOUTH TO THE NORTH
Jenny Albani
Painted decoration of the church of St. Onoufrius near Genna, Crete ............................................................................ 69
Georgios Th. Kardaras
Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D. ............................................................................................ 79
Georgi N. Nikolov
Die Christianisierung der Bulgaren und das Mönchtum in der Familie des Khans Boris I. Michail
im 9.-10. Jahrhundert ..................................................................................................................................................... 91
Angel Nikolov
Making a new basileus: the case of Symeon of Bulgaria (893-927) reconsidered ........................................................ 101
Lumír Poláček
Mikulčice und das Christentum in Mähren im 9. Jahrhundert ....................................................................................... 109
Béla Miklós Szőke
Kulturelle Beziehungen zwischen Mosaburg/Zalavár und dem Mittelmeerraum .......................................................... 125
Márta Font
Lateiner und Orthodoxe: Völker und ihre Gewohnheiten. Das Beispiel des mittelalterlichen Königreichs Ungarn .........143
Vincent Múcska
Zur Frage der großmährisch-byzantinischen Tradition im früharpadischen Ungarn –
Möglichkeiten der Interpretation ................................................................................................................................... 153
Petr Sommer
Der Heilige Prokop, das Kloster Sázava und die sogenannte altkirchenslawische Liturgie in Böhmen ....................... 161
Jitka Komendová
Rus’-Czech Relations during the Middle Ages as a Historiographical Problem ........................................................... 169
Christian Lübke
Ottonen, Slaven und Byzanz .......................................................................................................................................... 175
Sabine Altmann
Grenzüberschreitungen am westlichen Rand Ostmitteleuropas –
Die Saale als Grenz- und Kontaktzone zwischen Frankenreich und slawischer Fürstenherrschaft im 9. Jahrhundert ...... 183
Stanisław Rosik
Greeks and Romans in pagan Wolin. Integrating the Barbarians into the collective memory
of the Latin West at the time of the conversion of the Slavs ......................................................................................... 195
Marian Dygo
A Letter from Matthew, a Bishop of Cracow, to Bernard of Clairvaux
“on the Conversion of Russians” (1145?) ..................................................................................................................... 203
Darius von Güttner-Sporzyński
The archetypal crusader. Henry of Sandomierz, the second youngest son of Bolesław III ........................................... 215
Andrzej Buko
Byzantine cultural enclave in Central Europe? An example of the mortared tower
complex at Stołpie (south-eastern Poland) .................................................................................................................... 233
Alexey Chernetsov
Paradoxical hierarchy of civilizations (Medieval Russian concept) .............................................................................. 251
Maja Gąssowska
Der Heilige Olaf und Holmgård – Novgorod als Grenzraum zwischen
Ost und West im 11.-12. Jahrhundert ............................................................................................................................. 263
Jukka Korpela
Die Christianisierung der finno-ugrischen Peripherie Europas:
Zwei Theorien und unangenehme Tatsachen ................................................................................................................. 275
Jörn Staecker
Drei Magier auf einem gotländischen Bildstein.
Die Perzeption des Epiphaniethemas in der Wikingerzeit ............................................................................................. 287
Anna Waśko
Pagans in Erik’s Chronicle and in the Revelations of Saint Birgitta ............................................................................. 305
Volodymyr Bak
Die Weihe Kyrillos II. (1242-1281) zum Metropoliten der Rus’ in den 40er-Jahren
des 13. Jahrhunderts: ein Ereignis aus den kirchenpolitischen Beziehungen zwischen
Halič-Volyn’ und dem Byzantinischen Reich ................................................................................................................ 311
Sebastian Kolditz
Christliche Missionsbestrebungen und Konversionsansätze gegenüber den
Steppenvölkern, insbesondere Pečenegen und Kumanen .............................................................................................. 319
II.1 ARCHAEOLOGY:
ROME, CONSTANTINOPLE AND THE GRAVES
THE INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS
Sebastian Brather
Pagan or Christian? Early medieval grave furnishings in Central Europe .................................................................... 333
Aleksandra Sulikowska-Gąska
Funeral rites in Ruthenian iconography ......................................................................................................................... 351
Justyna Straczuk
Death beliefs and practices among peasant inhabitants of the Catholic-Orthodox
borderland in Belarus: an anthropological perspective .................................................................................................. 363
II.2 ARCHAEOLOGY:
SEARCHING FOR ROME AND CONSTANTINOPLE
FROM THE SOUTH TO THE NORTH
Natalia Poulou-Papadimitriou, Elli Tzavella, Jeremy Ott
Burial practices in Byzantine Greece: archaeological evidence
and methodological problems for its interpretation ....................................................................................................... 377
Perica Špehar, Orhideja Zorova
Christianity on the territory of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, 11th to the 13th century:
archaeological evidence from burial sites ...................................................................................................................... 429
Lyudmila Doncheva-Petkova, Maria Christova
La transition du paganisme au christianisme, reflétée dans les nécropoles du IXème-Xème siècle en Bulgarie ............... 447
Maja Petrinec
Croatia between the East and the West – evidence from early medieval graves ........................................................... 461
Tina Milavec
Sacred places? Eighth century graves near sixth century churches at Tonovcov grad (Slovenia) ................................ 475
Stefan Eichert
Zu Christentum und Heidentum im slawischen Karantanien ........................................................................................ 489
Elisabeth Nowotny
On the confessional situation between the Frankish Empire and Moravia in Carolingian times.
Focus on archaeological sources from Lower Austria ................................................................................................... 503
Petr Hejhal, Michal Lutovský
In agris sive in silvis… Secondary medieval burials in ancient barrows in Bohemia ................................................... 517
Anna Mazur, Krzysztof Mazur
Des tombes à inhumation du Haut Moyen Age en Petite-Pologne:
le cas de la nécropole de Wawrzeńczyce ....................................................................................................................... 525
Jacek Wrzesiński
The Dziekanowice cemetery – Christians cultivating venerable traditions .................................................................. 535
Przemysław Urbańczyk
A ‘Roman’ connection to the oldest burial in the Poznań Cathedral? ........................................................................... 553
Joanna Kalaga
The early medieval hillfort at Sąsiadka in the light of 1930s-1950s research. Current status
of post-excavation analysis of the archival record in the University of Warsaw .......................................................... 567
Jerzy Kuśnierz
Das mittelalterliche Körpergräberfeld auf dem Burgwall von Gródek (altrussischer Volyn’) in Anbetracht der
erhaltenen Grabungsdokumentation des Vorstandes zur Erforschung der Červenischen Burgen (1952-1955) ............ 579
Michał Dzik
Bi-ritual burials in the central Bug river basin during the Middle Ages ....................................................................... 603
Łukasz Miechowicz
Coins in the Western and Eastern Slavs burial practices in the Middle Ages –
relicts of pagan beliefs or a sign of Christian traditions? .............................................................................................. 613
Vsevolod Ivakin
Burial grounds and graves in medieval Kiev (10th to 13th century) ............................................................................... 625
Przemysław Sikora
Die ostslawischen Bestattungssitten zu Beginn der Christianisierung am Rande der
christlich-orthodoxen Welt am Beispiel Weißrusslands aus archäologischer Perspektive ............................................ 639
Anna Barvenova, Kristina Lavysh
Burials in churches from the 11th-14th centuries on the territory of Belarus:
influence of Christianization on the costume of the elite in the Western Rus’ principalities ........................................ 661
Eugenijus Svetikas
Latin Christianisation in the Orthodox Christian Grand Duchy of Lithuania
in late 14th and 15th centuries: a puzzle of historical facts and archaeological data ....................................................... 677
Roberts Spirģis
Archaeological evidence on the spread of Christianity to the Lower Daugava area (10th-13th century) ........................ 689
Vitolds Muižnieks
Archaeological evidence of 14th-18th century burial practices on the territory of Latvia .............................................. 713
Heiki Valk
The Zhalnik Graves: Evidence of the Christianization of the Novgorod and Pskov Lands? ........................................ 737
Vladislav Sobolev
On the process of formation of Early Rus’ burial culture in the Novgorod Land ......................................................... 751
Stanislav Bel’skiy, Ville Laakso
New archaeological evidence on the Christianization in Karelia in the 13th-15th centuries
(Northern Lake Ladoga region, Russian Federation) .................................................................................................... 767
СОДЕРЖАНИЕ
Предисловие составителей .......................................................................................................................................... 17
Джонатан Шепард
Рим, Константинополь и новая Европа: археологические и исторические свидетельства.
Некоторые предварительные размышления ............................................................................................................... 23
I.1 ИСТОРИЯ:
РИМ, КОНСТАНТИНОПОЛЬ, НОВЫЕ ГРАНИЦЫ
ВВЕДЕНИЕ В ПРОБЛЕМУ
Ежи Стржельчик
Миссионерские стратегии и практики Латинской Церкви в раннем средневековье .............................................. 33
Мачей Саламон
Существовала ли миссионерская политика в Византии? .......................................................................................... 43
Матиас Хардт
Границы в исследованиях средневековой Европы ..................................................................................................... 55
I.2 ИСТОРИЯ:
В ПОИСКАХ РИМА И КОНСТАНТИНОПОЛЯ
С ЮГА НА СЕВЕР
Ени Албани
Настенные росписи XIV в. в церкви св.Онуфрия (Генна, остров Крит) ................................................................. 69
Георгиос Ф. Кардaрас
Предметы с христианской символикой у кочевников в V-VIII вв. ........................................................................... 79
Георги Н. Николов
Христианизация болгар и монашество в семье хана Бориса I – Михаила (IX-X вв.) ............................................ 91
Ангел Николов
Становление нового василевса: новый взгляд на правление Симеона Болгарского (893-927) .............................. 101
Люмир Польачек
Микульчицы и христианство в Моравии в IX в. ....................................................................................................... 109
Бела Миклош Сыке
Культурные контакты между Блатенградом/Мозабругом/Залаваром и Средиземноморьем ................................ 125
Марта Фонт
Латиняне и православные: люди и обычаи средневековой Венгрии ...................................................................... 143
Винсен Мучка
К вопросу о моравской традиции в Венгрии эпохи первых Арпадовичей –
возможности интерпретации ...................................................................................................................................... 153
Петр Соммер
Святой Прокопий, Сазавский монастырь и «старославянское богослужение» в средневековой Чехии ............. 161
Йитка Комендова
Русско-чешские отношения эпохи Средневековья как историографическая проблема ....................................... 169
Христиан Любке
Оттониды, славяне и Византия .................................................................................................................................... 175
Сабинэ Альтман
Пограничье на периферии Центральной и Восточной Европы: река Зале как граница и контактная
зона между Франкской империей и славянскими княжествами .............................................................................
Станислав Рощик
Греки и Римляне языческого Волина: варвары в коллективной памяти латинского
Запада в эпоху христианизации славян .....................................................................................................................
Мариан Дыго
Послание Матфея, епископа Краковского, к Бернарду Клервоскому «об обращении русских» (1145?) .............
Дариус фон Гютнер-Спожински
Образцовый крестоносец? Генрих Сандомирский, младший сын Болеслава III ..................................................
Анджей Буко
Каменная башня в Столпье (Юго-Восточная Польша): византийский культурный анклав
в Центральной Европе? ...............................................................................................................................................
Алексей Чернецов
Парадоксальная иерархия цивилизаций (древнерусский взгляд) ...........................................................................
Майа Гонссовска
Святой Олав и Хольмгард-Новгород как культурное пограничье между Востоком
и Западом в XI-XII вв. .................................................................................................................................................
Юкка Корпела
Христианизация Северо-Восточной Европы: две теории и неудобные факты .....................................................
Йорн Штекер
Изображение трех волхвов на поминальном камне c Готланда: восприятие христианских
сюжетов в языческом мире .........................................................................................................................................
Анна Ващко
Язычники в Хронике Эрика и Откровениях св. Бригитты ......................................................................................
Владимир Бак
Поставление Кирилла II (1242-1281) митрополитом вcея Руси в 1240-х гг. в контексте
религиозно-политических связей Галицко-Волынской Руси и Византии ..............................................................
Себастьян Колдиц
Христианская миссия и христианизация степных народов в истории печенегов и половцев .............................
183
195
203
215
233
251
263
275
287
305
311
319
II.1 АРХЕОЛОГИЯ:
РИМ, КОНСТАНТИНОПОЛЬ, ПОГРЕБАЛЬНЫЙ ОБРЯД
ВВЕДЕНИЕ В ПРОБЛЕМУ
Себастьян Братер
Язычники или христиане? Раннесредневековые погребения с инвентарем в Центральной Европе ................. 333
Александра Суликовска-Гонска
Тема погребения в древнерусской иконографии ..................................................................................................... 351
Юстына Страчук
Заупокойные верования и обряды сельского населения православно-католического
пограничья Белоруссии в антропологической перспективе .................................................................................... 363
II.2 АРХЕОЛОГИЯ:
В ПОИСКАХ РИМА И КОНСТАНТИНОПОЛЯ
С ЮГА НА СЕВЕР
Наталья Пулу-Пападимитриу, Елли Тсавелла, Джереми Отт
Погребальный обряд византийской Греции: данные археологии и методологические
проблемы их интерпретации ...................................................................................................................................... 377
Перица Шпехар, Орхидея Зорова
Христианство на территории Охридской архиепископии в XI-XIII вв.: свидетельство
археологии погребального обряда ............................................................................................................................. 429
Людмила Дончева-Петкова, Мария Христова
Процесс перехода от язычества к христианству в Болгарии по материалaм раскопок
некрополей IX-X вв. .................................................................................................................................................... 447
Майа Петринец
Хорватия между Востоком и Западом по данным средневековых некрополей ...................................................... 461
Тина Милавец
Священные места? Погребения VIII в. близь позднеантичной церкви Тоновцева града
(Словения, VI в.) .......................................................................................................................................................... 475
Стефан Айхерт
Христианство и язычество в Карантании .................................................................................................................. 489
Елизабет Новотны
Конфессиональная ситуация на границе Франкской империи и Моравии в эпоху Каролингов
по археологическим памятникам Нижней Австрии ................................................................................................. 503
Петр Хейхаль, Михал Лютовски
In agris sive in silvis… Cредневековые впускные погребения в древних курганах Чехии .................................... 517
Анна Мазур, Кшиштов Мазур
Раннесредневековые погребения в Малопольше – некрополь Вавженчице .......................................................... 525
Яцек Вжешиньски
Некрополь в Декановичах – христианское развитие древних традиций ............................................................... 535
Пшемыслав Урбанчик
«Римские» элементы древнейшего погребения кафедрального собора в Познани? ............................................ 553
Иоланта Кальага
Средневековое городище в селе Сансядка: обзор археологических исследований 1930-1950-х гг.
по материалам архивного собрания Варшавского университета ............................................................................ 567
Ежи Кушнеж
Средневековые погребения городища Грудек (древнерусский Волынь) в свете архивных документов
Научной Комиссии Польской Академии наук по изучению Червенских городов (1952-1955) ........................... 579
Михал Дзик
Неполные трупосожжения в погребальном обряде центрального Побужья эпохи средневековья ................... 603
Лукаш Мехович
Монеты в средневековом погребальном обряде западных и восточных славян: пережитки
язычества или влияние христианства? ...................................................................................................................... 613
Всеволод Ивакин
Погребальные памятники древнерусского Киева X-XIII вв. ................................................................................... 625
Пшемыслав Сикора
Славянский погребальный обряд ранних этапов христианизации на окраинах восточно-христианского
мира на примере Белоруссии – археологический подход ........................................................................................ 639
Анна Барвенова, Кристина Лавыш
Погребения в храмах на территории Белоруссии XI-XIV вв.: роль христианизации в формировании
костюма элиты княжеств Западной Руси ................................................................................................................... 661
Евгениус Светикас
Латинская христианизация православных земель Великого княжества Литовского
в конце XIV-XV вв.: исторические факты и данные археологии ............................................................................ 677
Робертс Спиргис
Археологические свидетельства о распространении христианства в низовьях
Западной Двины в X-XIII вв. ...................................................................................................................................... 689
Витольдс Музнекс
Археология погребального обряда XIV-XVIII вв. на территории Латвии ............................................................. 713
Хейки Валк
Жальники: свидетельство христианизации Новгородской и Псковской земли? ................................................... 737
Владислав Соболев
Проблемы формирования древнерусской погребальной культуры Новгородской земли ..................................... 751
Станислав Бельский, Вилле Лааксо
Новые археологические свидетельства о христианизации Приладожской Карелии в XIII-XV вв. ..................... 767
Rome, Constantinople and Newly-Converted Europe. Archaeological and Historical Evidence
M. Salamon, M. Wołoszyn, A. Musin, P. Špehar, M. Hardt, M.P. Kruk, A. Sulikowska-Gąska (eds.)
U ŹRÓDEŁ EUROPY ŚRODKOWO-WSCHODNIEJ/FRÜHZEIT OSTMITTELEUROPAS 1,1
Kraków-Leipzig-Rzeszów-Warszawa 2012, vol. I, p. 79-90
GEORGIOS Th. KARDARAS
CHRISTIAN SYMBOLS AMONG THE NOMADS, 5TH-8TH CENTURY A.D.
Abstract. Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D. The paper investigates the
presence of a variety of Christian symbols among the nomads during the Late Antiquity and the
early Middle Ages, covering a quite broad geographical area, from the south Russian steppes to
the Middle Danube. The nomadic peoples examined here are the Huns, the Avars, the early Bulgar
tribes, and the early Khazars. Important parameters discussed are the contacts between these peoples
and Byzantium as well as the efforts of the Byzantines to integrate the nomads into the Christian
Oekoumene. Evidence from sources is provided for the plans to Christianise the nomadic peoples
in the Caucasus area and the Black Sea (Savir Huns, Huns of Bosporus, Onogurs), an attempt
linked to the economic and geopolitical interests of the Byzantines. Under consideration are also
the archaeological finds (crosses, etc.) linked to the nomads of the aforementioned areas.
A second – and possibly more complex – issue is the presence of Christian symbols within the
Avar Khaganate, where there is no testimony for any missionary activity until the Charlemagne
wars. In the area of the Middle Danube, a great number of Christian symbols have been found,
such as decorative motifs on belts or rings, crosses of lead or silver, sarcophagi, the image of
Christ or angels, themes from the Old Testament, etc. On these objects and motifs, many diverse
assumptions have been proposed about their origin and character, such as the Christianization of
a part of the Avars, the survival of small Christian communities or ecclesiastical centres from Late
Antiquity, the role of others (Germanic or nomadic elements) in the diffusion of Christian motifs
etc. The study considers the Christian symbols in the Avar Κhaganate as a result of imitation of
byzantine stylistic motifs, making also reference to the tolerance the nomads showed towards
Christianity.
The target of Byzantine policy on a religious level was the gradual integration of all the nations into
the Christian Oekoumene. Regarding the nomadic peoples, some early Christian authors, such as Johannes
Chrysostom (Johannes Chrysostom, Psalm 44, p. 185) and Sozomenus (Sozomenus, VII. 26, p. 341), present
the nomads (Scythians) in contact with Christianity in the 4th c. Orosius (Orosius, VII, 41.8, p. 122) counts the
Huns among the Christianized nations, while Hieronymus (Hieronymus, ep. 107, p. 146) states that deposuit
faretras Armenius, Hunni discunt psalterium, Scythiae frigora feruent calore fidei; Also, in the mid-6th century,
Cosmas Indicopleustes (Cosmas, vol. I, 3.65, p. 504) includes in the Christian Oekoumene the Hepthalite Huns
(see László 1940, 133; 1969, 143; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 76-80, 86, 138-144).
The spread of Christianity to the nomads of the Black Sea and the Caucasus in the 4th and 5th centuries
was mainly due to missionary activity (Kralides 2003, 188-190; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 142-144). On the
other hand, from the beginning of the 6th century, we remark a combined effort of the Church and the state to
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Georgios Th. Kardaras
carry out the conversion of these areas. This more organized and intensive missionary activity was linked to
the expansion and consolidation of the Byzantine influence in the Caucasus and the Black Sea (Papasotiriou
2000, 65-66, 105-108; Kralides 2003, 190-198; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 234-273). Regarding this political
dimension in Byzantine historiography, A. Cameron points out that Procopius “[…] shows disapproval of
military campaigns undertaken for motives of Christianization or for reinforcement of Christianity […]”
and, in the case of the Iberians and the Lazi, “[…] never doubts that the religious affiliations of these peoples
are a crucial factor in their situation as buffer between the two major states […]” (Cameron 1985, 122).
Within the frame of the Byzantine-Persian controversy, Constantinople approached the rulers of the
Crimean Huns and the Savirs. Presumably at the end of the reign of Justin I (518-527) a mission led by
Kardutsat (Theokletos), bishop of the country of Arran, converted to Christianity many Savirs, together
with their captives, and translated holy books into their language. When emperor Justin heard about this
mission, he sent to the Savirs “[…] flour and wine and oil and linen cloths and other commodities and
sacramental vessels […]” (Zachariah Rhetor, 12, p. 329-330; cf. also Kollautz 1970, 12-13; Kralides 2003,
192; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 257-260). In the case of the Hun leader Zilgivis (c. 520/22) and Boa, the queen
of the Savirs (528), the Byzantines offered them gifts and money, but there is no mention of Christianization
(Malalas, 10, p. 341-342 and 13, p. 360; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 257, 260-261). However, in 528, Grod, the
rex of the Crimean Huns, came to Constantinople and was baptized. Grod tried to convert his people to
Christianity and destroyed the pagan statues, but the reaction of the Hun priests led to the murder of Grod
and the Byzantine guard of the city Bosporus (Malalas, 14, p. 360-362; Kollautz 1970, 13; Cameron 1985,
123; Kralides 2003, 192; Patoura-Spanou 2008, 261-263). There are also references to the Christianization
of nomads in the 7th century: in 619, Orhan, the leader of the Onogur Bulgars and his nephew Kubrat visited
Constantinople and were baptized (Johannes of Nikiu, 120. 47, p. 197; Nikephoros, 9, p. 48-50; Beševliev
1981, 149-153; Róna-Tas 2000). Furthermore, we are informed of the mission of Israel (Bishop of Caucasian
Albania) in 681-682 to the Huns north of the Caucasus (Movses Dasxuranci, II. 39-42, p. 153-168; HowardJohnston 2007, 171; Zuckerman 2007, 408).
Although the aforesaid efforts of the Byzantines did not result in a permanent conversion of some
nomadic peoples, they brought them into contact with Christianity and spread among them the use of the
relative Christian symbols. The latter were discovered in a number of graves in the Crimea and north of
the Black Sea, as crosses, attributed to the 7th century, from Kelegeja (near Cherson), Skalistoje (along with
amulets etc.), Chir-Jurt (between Volga and Don), Krylos, or the cross with Greek monogram [ΠΕΤΡΟΣ?] on
a small statue from Voznesenskaya (see László 1940, 138; Bálint 1989, 94-95, 104; Veimarn, Aibabin 1993;
Garam 2001, 61, 63; Aibabin 2006, 51). A diamond-shaped cross-piece decorates swords found at Malaya
Pereshchepino, Voznesenskaya and Gladossy (Aibabin 2006, 54). Also, some nomadic graves in northern
Fig. 1. Skalistoe, region Bakhchisaray, Autonomous Republic of Crimea, Ukraine. Crosses and capsulae;
after E.W. Veimarn, A.I. Aibabin (1993, Fig. 121) redrawn by J. Ożóg.
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Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D.
Caucasus, as in Gilach, Abrau-Dyurso, Pashkovskaya, Uzun-Kol and Kislovodsk contained capsulae, dated to
the 5th or 6th century (Vida 1995, 224-230; cf. Fig. 1).
The most important findings, linked to Kubrat, the ruler of Great Bulgaria, come from the grave at
Malaya Pereshchepino. A silver disc, with a stamp of the Emperor Anastasius (491-518), bears a Christogram
and the name of Paternus, Bishop of Tomis (498-520). The Christogram is surrounded by the inscription ex
antiquis renovatum est per Paternum reverentiss(imum) episc(opum) nostrum amen. The disc is adorned also
with 4 crosses, tendrils and grapes, skeps for the bread, a jug, deer, peacocks, etc., representations which
possibly depicted the Heaven and the Eucharist. Another find was a plate with a depiction of a cross, and a
bowl for hand-washing, presumably of a higher cleric, dated to the end of the 6th century (Werner 1984, 10-11;
Bálint 1989, 98; Aibabin 2006, 53-54; cf. Fig. 2).
Among the numerous archaeological remnants of the Avar Khaganate there are many objects with
Christian symbols. Although there are no written references to the missionary activity to the Avars until the
Frankish wars led by Charlemagne, the presence of these symbols gave rise to various assumptions, e.g., on
missionary activity within the Avar Khaganate and conversion of a part of the Avars to Christianity (László
1940, 133; 1969, 146; Kollautz 1970, 24-27; Vida 1998, 536). In addition, some of the Christian symbols are
linked either to the presence in the Carpathian Basin of Germanic peoples, e.g., Lombards and Gepids (László
Fig. 2. Malaya Pereshchepino, region Novy Sanzhary, oblast’ Poltava Ukraine. Silver disc (no scale);
after A. Bobrinskoy (1914, Fig. 1).
81
Georgios Th. Kardaras
1940, 131-132, 136; 1969, 143-144), or the survival of local, subjugated Christian communities, mainly
around Keszthely and Pécs (László 1940, 128-130, 136; 1969, 144; Kollautz 1970, 19; Tóth 1987, 255-261).
The Christian symbols in the Avar Khaganate appear on a wide spectrum of objects. The most characteristic
examples are pectoral pendant crosses, either repousse or cast, possibly of Byzantine origin. The following
sub-categories are worth mentioning:
a) Crosses with an inscription: The most common inscriptions are the words ΖωΗ (zoe) = life, and ΦωC
(fos) = light, as on the crosses from Balatonfűzfő (6th c.) and the one known from Grave No. 6 at
Vajska (6th-7th c.). A well known example is the cross from Závod (Grave No. 104), dated to 6th-7th c.
It is considered a Byzantine object and bears the inscription ΑΓΙΟC ΑΓΙΟC ΑΓΙΟC ΚC CΑΒΑΩ Τ
(László 1940, 145; 1969, 150-151; Kollautz 1970, 22; Garam 2001, 57, 60-61).
b) Gold, silver or bronze crosses, decorated with granulation, gemstones or imitation of the latter. Dated
to the 6th-7th c., some imitations of Byzantine crosses are also preserved. Two of the best examples
include the silver cross from Vajska (Grave No. 5), and the golden cross from Ozora-Tótipuszta
(László 1940, 138; Garam 1991, 159-161; 2001, 57-63; Bugarski 2009, 221, 224-225).
Fig. 3. Crosses and rings with Christian symbols from the territory of the Avar Khaganate; after T. Vida (1998, Fig. 2-3)
redrawn by J. Ożóg.
1 – Székkutas, Komitat Csongrád, Hungary; 2 – Vajska, Južno-Bački Okrug, Serbia; 3 – Deszk, Komitat Csongrád,
Hungary; 4-5 – Ozora-Totipuszta, Komitat Tolna, Hungary; 6 – Bóly, Komitat Baranya, Hungary;
7 – Vajska, Južno-Bački Okrug, Serbia; 8 – Budakalász, Komitat Peszt, Hungary; 9 – Bóly, Komitat Baranya, Hungary;
10 – Keszthely-Fenékpuszta, Komitat Zala, Hungary; 11 – Pilismarót, Komitat Komárom-Esztergom, Hungary;
12-13 – Pécs-Köztemetö, Komitat Baranya, Hungary; 14 – Várpalota-Gimnázium, Komitat Veszprém, Hungary.
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Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D.
c) Lead pectoral crosses (9/10 undecorated), dated to the 6th and 7th c. They are recorded in a large
territory, in northern and southern parts of Transdanubia, the southern Hungarian Plain, as well as
the area between the Danube and the Tisza (Garam 2001, 59, 63-65; Bugarski 2009, 221-224, 229;
cf. Fig. 3).
Christian symbols were also used to ornament jewellery. Some half-moon shaped earrings, dated to
the 6th-7th c., with depictions of crosses, monograms, pigeons or peacocks (symbols of immortality), etc.,
were discovered mainly in the area of Keszthely and Pécs. These earrings are considered either as imports
from Byzantium or local imitations made according to Byzantine models. Crosses appear also on some
earrings with star-shaped pendant (Garam 2001, 18-23). Among neck pendants are found small amulets
(Reliquienkapseln, lead pendants etc.), decorated with Christian symbols. The small silver pendant from
Balatonfűzfő with the inscription ΠΕΤΡΟC, is considered a Byzantine object. On the other hand, the lead
pendants of the Avar period, which occur in poorly furnished female graves, are likely to be an imitation of
small Byzantine golden pieces ornamented with crosses. Lead pendants were discovered in Transdanubia,
between the Danube and the Tisza, as well as east of the Tisza (László 1969, 150; Kollautz, 1970, 30; Garam
2001, 34-37).
Also regarded as an expression of Christian faith is a peculiar find of Byzantine provenance, the disc
fibulae of the Keszthely-Pécs group with depictions of Christ, angels, holy riders, crosses etc. A continuity
of this group is observed in Transdanubia up to the 8th c. (the so-called Baranya group). Possibly, the early
finds from Keszthely-Fenékpuszta as well as the fibula with Greek inscription from Nagyharsány are related
to Sirmium, which fell to the Avars in 582 (László 1969, 148-150; Kollautz 1970, 19-20, 24-27; Garam 1993,
103-105; Garam 2001, 51-57; Daim 2003, 476; cf. Fig. 4). The rich Christian finds from Keszthely, along with
the presence there of a flourishing Christian community during the Early Avar Period have been interpreted in
terms of survival of an ecclesiastical center linked with Rome (Daim 2003, 519).
Regarding the ornament of silver or bronze rings in the Avar Khaganate, a special finger-ring type
(Siegelringe) bears Greek monograms, crosses, or other Christian symbols, and originates from Byzantium.
Simple or cross-shaped monograms are known from Keszthely-Fenékpuszta, Bóly, Zamárdi and PécsGyárváros. In some cases, the rings bear a variety of motifs, as crosses, birds and cypresses (Kölked). Another
group of silver rings (Kopfplatte) are known from the cemetery around the Horreum at Keszthely-Fenékpuszta
and are decorated with a cross, a fish or a couple (Graves No. 9, 16, 7). Seal-shaped rings were found mainly
at Keszthely and Pécs, and also, in northwest Transdanubia (Budakalász, Környe). The cross-shaped pattern is
seen too on some rings with spiral terminals (Garam 2001, 74-81).
The cross-shaped ornament is a characteristic feature of Sucidava type buckles, their small number of
finds dated to the Avar period are attributed mostly to Gepidic graves. The type is dated after the second third
of the 6th c. and was widespread in the Balkans (Garam 2001, 95-97). As regards ornamentation of belts, we
observe, next to crosses, mask fittings on the main straps. They are dated from the late 6th to the early 7th c.,
and are considered by É. Garam as depictions of Christ (Garam 2001, 130-132; Daim 2003, 476-477). The
fish is the main motif on belts of Törökkanisza and Τarnaméra type. The belt mounts from Törökkanisza/Novi
Kneževac are surounded by cypresses and dot-komma ornaments, while in the middle field the monogram
ΑΡΕΘΟΥ is displayed. The Törökkanisza type belt fittings occur in the southern Hungarian Plain as well as
between the Danube and the Tisza rivers. Medallions with Christian monograms are also to be found on the
main strap-ends of belt sets of Kunágota -Mersin type (Bálint 1989, 156; Garam 2001, 77-78, 139-146; Daim
2003, 471).
Ornaments used on belt fittings include depictions of birds (László 1969, 148; Garam 2001, 148-150)
and motifs from the Old Testament, as Daniel, Jonah, etc. (Kollautz 1970, 32-37; Vida 1998, 534-535). Finally,
we can distinguish Christian symbols (crosses or cross-shaped ornaments) on weights and assorted finds dating
to the 7th c., as the silver plate from Tépe, a bowl from Zamárdi-Rétiföldek (Grave No. 244), and a lamp from
Tápiógyörgye-Nagymegyerpuszta (Garam 2001, 160-162, 173-176; Daim 2003, 480, 482), which entered
the Carpathian Basin either as a result of trade or as booty from Avar raids. Among the limited spectrum of
finds featuring Christian symbols dated to the late 7th-8th centuries, we may include the crosses and the coffins
from Székkutas (László 1969, 150-151; Vida 1998, 534; Daim 2003, 520), as well as crosses depicted on four
vessels (No. 3, 4, 19 and 21) from the Nagyszentmiklós treasure (László 1940, 145; Bálint 2002, 60, 70, 79).
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Georgios Th. Kardaras
Fig. 4. Disc fibulae of the Keszthely-Pécs group (no scale); after E. Garam (2001, Pl. 32).
1 – Keszthely-Fenékpuszta, Horreum, Komitat Zala, Hungary, Grave No. 5; 2 – Nagyharsány, Komitat Baranya, Hungary;
3 – Keszthely-Dobogó, Komitat Zala, Hungary; 4 – Keszthely-Fenékpuszta, Horreum, Komitat Zala, Grave 14, Hungary;
5 – Keszthely-Dobogó, Komitat Zala, Hungary; 6-7 – Pécs-Gyárváros, Komitat Baranya, Hungary.
The presence of the aforementioned symbols may be linked to the survival of Christian traditions within
the Avar Khaganate, in the area of Pannonia Christianized before the Avar settlement (cf. Barton 1975). During
the Avar era, despite the flight of Christian population, some Christian communities continued to survive, as
at Κeszthely, at Savaria and the area of Sopianae/Pécs (Kollautz 1970, 19; Tóth 1987, 253-255; Garam 2001,
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Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D.
65). Moreover, we need to take into account that, apart from the gifts of Byzantine envoys and trade, the Avars
came in contact with Christian symbols during their short stay north of the Black Sea and later brought these
motifs to the Carpathian Basin. From the same area some other nomadic tribes moved with the Avars, e.g., the
Kutrigurs and the Utigurs, who had already accepted the influence of Byzantine culture (László 1969, 143;
Kralides 2003, 193).
Independently of various assumptions regarding the presence of Christian symbols in the Avar Khaganate,
the main problem consists in the attribution of these symbols to the Avars as an indication of the adoption of
Christianity by them. As regards Byzantine-Avar relations, there is no evidence on missionary activity directed
on the Avars. Consequently, the presence of Christian symbols and motifs on finds from the Avar Khaganate
do not necessarily mean that a part of the Avars had adopted Christianity. Evidence from western sources on
this topic is insufficient to support such an hypothesis. In 696, the Bishop Rupert of Salzburg avoided entering
Pannonia (Vita Hrodberti..., 5, p. 159; Barton 1975, 204; Pohl 1988, 308) while the Bavarian Duke Theodo
(between 685-690?) dissuaded Emmeram, Bishop of Regensburg, from undertaking missionary activity among
the Avars (Arbeo Frisingensis, 5, p. 34; Barton 1975, 209; Tóth 1987, 263; Pohl 1988, 308; Wood 2001, 150151). Moreover, Carolingian sources on the Avars at the end of the 8th century, contain references on pagans
and persecutors of Christians (Einhardus, p. 176 [a. 791] “[...] quam fecerunt Avari contra sanctam ecclesiam
vel populum christianum, unde iustitias per missos impetrare non valuerunt [...]”; s. also László 1969, 146;
Kollautz 1970, 15-16, 27; Tirr 1976, 111).
The gradual conversion of the Avars started after their subjugation by Charlemagne in 796, who had
the support of the Catholic clergy during his military operations (cf. Váczy 1972, 407-420; Pohl 1988, 204205, 320; Szöke 1990-1991, 145-149; Reimitz 2001, 190, 199-203). From Conventus Episcoporum of 796,
we derive information on the survival of a Christian community and poor clergy in Pannonia: “Illi vero, qui
ab inlitteratis clericis baptizati existunt et, cum intinguerentur in aqua, nec illi fidem, quia nesciebant, professi
sunt, nec ille, qui baptizabat, dixit [...]” (Conventus Episcoporum..., p. 176 [a. 796]; cf. László 1969, 145;
Barton 1975, 186; Tóth 1987, 262-263). The Christianization of the last Avars was completed some years
later, when the Franks resettled them from their territory between the Danube and the Tisza to northwestern
Pannonia (inter Sabariam et Carnuntum) in 805. On this occasion, some of the western authors mention Avar
rulers with Christian names, such as Theodoros and Abraam (cf. László 1940, 145-146; Pohl 1988, 205, 302,
322; Szöke 1990-1991, 148). Basing on this evidence and despite the aforementioned finds, we could assume,
as a general conclusion, that the Avars had not been converted to Christianity before the Frankish wars and had
kept their own religion, e.g. shamanism. The Christian tradition and the relative symbols in the Avar Khaganate
presumably are linked to the survival of small non-Avar communities, while for the Avars they were only
decorative motifs without religious content (Kollautz 1955, 285-295; Pohl 1988, 200-204; Daim 2003, 520521; Bugarski 2009, 225-229).
Christian communities had survived mostly at Keszthely and the area of Pécs, and apart from them
we must consider the transfer of Christian population to the area of Sirmium after the Avar raids at the end
of the 6th and the first decades of the 7th century. They were part of the so-called Sermisianoi, who moved in
c. 680 to the Balkans under the leadership of Kuber (Beševliev 1981, 163-169; Pohl 1988, 278-279). Kuber
is linked also to a Bulgarian migration in the 660’s from the south Russian steppes, which, according to some
scholars, caused changes in the material culture in the Carpathian Basin (on the issue, see László 1940, 140;
1969, 150; Garam 1987, 196-197; Bálint 1989, 169-171, 174-175; see also Goldina 1992, 497-501)1. On the
other hand, the coexistence of different populations within the Avar Khaganate could have influenced the
lower classes of the Avars on a religious level, but even this assumption cannot be confirmed conclusively
(see László 1940, 137, 140). As regards the spread of Christian symbols, most of them are found between
the river Raab and the mouth of the Drava, and, second, in the region of Kiskörös and Szeged (László 1969,
152). There is much to suggest also, that the nomads rather than being persecutors of the Christians showed
tolerance towards them. We can mention here e.g., the oath of Khagan Bayan made on the holy books in 579,
declaring that he had no intention to attack Sirmium (Menander, fr. 25. 1, p. 221-223; Pohl 1988, 72). As an
1
We need to note that both the question of causes and of the chronology of material culture change on the territory of the Avar Khaganate during
the second half of the 7th is still far from clear (cf. the results of the session Betrachtungen zur Chronologie der Mittelawarenzeit, Budapest,
26.-27.11.2004 published in Anteus, vol. 29-30 [2008], p. 29-401).
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Georgios Th. Kardaras
indication of tolerance to the influence of Christianity we may consider later, in the 8th century, the existence
of Christian churches and bishoprics on nomad territory, such as Astil, Onogouron, Hunnon etc. (cf. Pletnjowa
1978, 42 [see also russian edition – 1976]; Kralides 2003, 198-200; Aibabin 2005, 423; Howard-Johnston
2007, 171-172).
Резюме. Предметы с христианской символикой у кочевников в V-VIII вв. В статье анализируется
феномен присутствия предметов с христианской символикой в культурах кочевых народов в эпоху
поздней Античности и раннего средневековья на обширных пространствах от южно-русских степей
до Среднего Подунавья. В исследование включены такие народы как гунны, авары, протоболгары и
ранние хазары. К числу обсуждаемых тем относятся контакты кочевников с Византией, а также попытки
византийцев христианизировать варваров. К числу обсуждаемыx проблем относятся контакты этих
племен с Византией, также как и стремление Империи включить кочевников в христианскую Ойкумену.
Источники свидетельствуют о христианизации народов на Северном Кавказе и в Причерноморье
(савиры, боспорские гунны, оногуры) в связи с экономическими и геополитическими интересами
Византии. В статье также рассматриваются археологические находки с христианской символикой,
связанные с ханом Кубратом, христианскими правителями Великой Болгарии и ранними хазарами. С
другим, более сложным комплексом проблем, соотносятся подобные находки на территории Аварского
каганата, сведения о христианизации населения которого до эпохи войн Карла Великого отсутствуют.
В Среднем Подунавье зафиксировано значительное число предметов с христианской символикой, в
том числе орнаментированные поясные наборы и перстни, свинцовые и серебряные кресты, саркофаги,
нecyщие на себе изображения Христа или ангелов, сюжеты Ветхого Завета и т.д. В отношении характера
и происхождения этих предметов и орнаментальных мотивов предлагалось множество гипотез, среди
которых обращение в христианство части авар, региональный континуитет небольших христианских
общин или церковных центров, возникших еще в эпоху поздней Античности, проникновение
христианских сюжетов на эти земли в результате межэтнических контактов с германскими племенами
и другими номадами. Автор рассматривает христианскую символику на территории Аварского каганата
как результат местного подражания византийским стилистическим мотивам в контексте терпимого
отношения кочевников к христианству.
86
Christian symbols among the nomads, 5th-8th century A.D.
Bibliography
Abbreviations
Monumenta Germaniae Historica.
MGH
Literary Sources
Arbeonis episcopi Frisingensis, Vita vel passio Haimhrammi episcopi et martyris
Ratisbonensis, B. Krusch (ed.), MGH. Scriptores rerum Germanicarum in usum
scholarum, 13, Hannover 1920.
Conventus Episcoporum... Conventus Episcoporum ad ripas Danubii a. 796, [in:] Concilia Aevi Karolini,
A. Werminghoff (ed.), MGH. Legum sectio, 3, concilia, vol. II:1, Hannover-Leipzig
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Address of the Author:
Δρ. Γεώργιος Θ. Καρδαράς
Εθνικό Ίδρυµα Ερευνών (ΕΙΕ)
Ινστιτούτο Βυζαντινών Ερευνών (ΙΒΕ)
Βασιλέως Κωνσταντίνου 48
11635 – Αθήνα
ΕΛΛΑΔΑ
email: [email protected]
90
Dr Georgios Th. Kardaras
National Hellenic Research Foundation
Institute for Byzantine Research
Vassileos Constantinou 48
11635 – Athens
GREECE
email: [email protected]