The Great Palace

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review


This chapter addresses the significance of the Byzantine Great Palace in Constantinople, which was briefly referred to in Procopius' text on the buildings of Justinian I. It summarises the complex' history and development up to the period of Procopius in the 6th century, and the textual and archaeological evidence for its architectural character and topography. The 'Great Palace’ (τό μέγα παλάτιον), was built upon artificial terraces on the eastern slopes of the Constantinople littoral, and remained the administrative and ceremonial centre of the Eastern Roman Empire from the time of Constantine I or his immediate successors until the relocation of the main seat of the imperial court to Blachernai (Βλαχέρναι) by Alexios I Komnenos in the second half of the eleventh century, although certain buildings and sites continued to be used and formed part of the processional itinerary for later emperors. Its size and importance for the early mediaeval period was enormous- the recorded archaeology of the palace, scant as it is, covers much of the eastern end of the Istanbul promontory between the ramparts of the sea palace, or Boukoleon, overlooking the Sea of Marmara, and Hagia Sophia to the north.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication"Procopius and the Language of Buildings"
Publication statusSubmitted - 27 Jul 2022


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