Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

2011 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Lagerlund

Political Philosophy, Byzantine

  • Ivan Christov
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-9729-4_411


Byzantine political philosophy (BPP), in general, is a reflection on the political practices and the nature of the empire, on the divine origin of emperorship, on the hierarchical order of imperial government, civil ranks, and the community of Christian states, under the guidance of the Byzantine Emperor. In a more particular sense, it is a reflection that goes further and comments on its own foundations in Christian metaphysics, epistemology, and axiology. This second approach to the BPP is rather problematic because of the scarce textual evidence. The Byzantines felt not much need to theorize, taking for granted that their empire is a gift from God. It was usual in that time to impose the general theological and philosophical modes of thought on political thought, not taking into account their sophisticated interaction with facts. Thus, the BPP tended to be just a part of the imperial ideology.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ivan Christov
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of TheologyUniversity of SofiaSofiaBulgaria