Theodora: Empress of Byzantium

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Abrams, Feb 1, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 400 pages
This book is a gripping, long-overdue biography of one of the most intriguing and powerful female figures of Western history: Theodora of Byzantium. Ruthlessly criticized and reviled by her contemporaries, Theodora, the beautiful wife of Emperor Justinian, began her life as the daughter of a bear-keeper and rose to be Justinian's partner in politics as well as in life, ruling from 527 to 548. She stood by his side in Constantinople as he built a “second Rome,” waging battles against the Goths and Vandals, quelling nationalist unrest in Egypt, and suppressing a rebellion at their doorstep by mercilessly slaughtering 30,000 in Constantinople's stadium. Theodora's political savvy saved Justinian's empire time and time again. When the European editions of Theodora were published, it was hailed as the “Book of the Year.” Author Paolo Cesaretti received the Ginzano Cavour Prize for sifting through a vast range of documentary material to deliver a richly entertaining story of an ambitious and cunning woman who defied the conventions of her time and triumphed over those who sought to defame and destroy her.

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User Review  - k8_not_kate - LibraryThing

Anyone who reads ancient and medieval biographies has probably found one whose author dealt with the lack of information poorly, but thankfully Theodora's biographer Paolo Cesaretti was creative with ... Read full review

Theodora: empress of Byzantium

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Set in sixth-century Byzantium, this is a real rags-to-riches story about one of the most fascinating women of antiquity. The daughter of a bear-keeper, Theodora went on to become a mime in obscene ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Paolo Cesaretti, an internationally recognized authority in Byzantine studies, teaches at the University of Chieti, Italy. In addition to his many books, he regularly contributes to important Italian publications, including Corriere della Sera and Il Giornale.

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