This thesis explores approaches to Byzantine monasticism and to the literary production of Byzantine monks, taking as its point of departure one community, the Constantinopolitan monastery of Panagiou, and the texts that can be attributed to its members. In Chapter One I show that Panagiou was an offshot of Lavra on Mt Athos, having been founded by Anthony, former disciple and designated successor of the Lavriot abbot Athanasius. In Chapter Two I identify the texts that can be related to the monastery in the early eleventh century: the Typikon of Panagiou which provided the model for the Petritzonitissa Typikon and two biographies of Athanasius the Athonite. I demonstrate that the two extant Lives, Vita A by Athanasius "the Younger" and the Lavriot Vita B, go back to a lost common model which I call Vita prima. Through a comparison of passages which are found both in the Petritzonitissa Typikon and in Vita A and Vita B I show that there exists a complex interplay between the hagiographical texts and the Panagiou Typikon. In Chapter Three I identify Anthony as author of the Panagiou Typikon and the Vita prima. I then show how he used the Vita prima to make his claim to be the rightful successor of Athanasius despite his failure to become abbot of Lavra. In his metaphrasis the author of Vita A reinterpreted Anthony's statements in order to present himself as the focus of a vast providential movement to ensure St Athanasius' care for him. In Chapter Four I attempt a reconstruction of the history of Panagiou in the later eleventh century. Panagiou's standing among monks can be gauged from the correspondence between Athanasius, abbot of Panagiou, and the Studite monk Nicetas Stethatos. Finally, an analysis of Pakourianos' Typikon for his foundation of the Theotokos Petritzonitissa allows a unique insight into the relation between a "reform" monastery and a lay founder.
|Date of Award||Jul 2001|
- Queen's University Belfast