Village networks in 13th century Byzantium

Village communities in 13th century Byzantium: networks and microstructures

The collapse of the Byzantine Empire after 1204 lead to new political entities and complicated entanglements in the Eastern Mediterranean. The broader picture of the historical developments inside the Greek states (Nicaea, Epirus and Trapezunt) have been analysed in various studies; modern scholars have also narrated in some extent the social and economic configurations on a microlevel. Unexplored remain, though, issues related to microstructures and networks of village communities after a state collapse. In a recent study on a village of the 13th century Western Asia Minor, we were able to approach the countryside of Nicaea based on methods and tools of Social Network Analysis.

Aim of this paper is to reevaluate our previous results and to expand our focus on the networks of other village communities in Nicaea, and their microstructures as well as on specific individuals.

Text: Ekaterini Mitsiou, Institute for Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies, University of Vienna (Wittgenstein-project; Email: