This book accompanies the ﬁrst exhibition to explore the lives of Byzantine women through their representation in material and literary culture. It features nearly two hundred works of art gathered from premier collections in North America by the organizers at the Harvard Art Museums’ Arthur M. Sackler Museum.
The objects presented here, dating from the fourth to the ﬁfteenth century, illuminate the historic and the quotidian, the renowned and the anonymous. They include luxury goods such as ivories, silver vessels, and jewelry; utilitarian items such as toiletry bottles and weaving tools; tokens of oﬃcialdom such as coins and seals; and ritual articles such as icons and amulets. Introductory essays by leading Byzantinists Ioli Kalavrezou and Angeliki E. Laiou place the objects in their artistic and historical context, and each section of the catalogue focuses on an aspect of public or private life: civic society, elite women, public devotion, work, the home, marriage, adornment, and health.
Published in conjunction with an exhibition at the Harvard Art Museums, October 25, 2002–April 28, 2003.
Ioli Kalavrezou is Dumbarton Oaks Professor of Byzantine Art History at Harvard University.