Talk:Heraclius

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Ethiopia[edit]

The alliance with Ethiopia isn't mentioned in the Ethiopian or Persian history articles. What is the source? http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/med/fryehst.html

The original source is the life of an Ethiopian saint. Alas, I cannot remember which one...Ikokki

Cultural depictions of Heraclius[edit]

I've started an approach that may apply to Wikipedia's Core Biography articles: creating a branching list page based on in popular culture information. I started that last year while I raised Joan of Arc to featured article when I created Cultural depictions of Joan of Arc, which has become a featured list. Recently I also created Cultural depictions of Alexander the Great out of material that had been deleted from the biography article. Since cultural references sometimes get deleted without discussion, I'd like to suggest this approach as a model for the editors here. Regards, Durova 17:20, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

Interesting, but I'm not sure if Heraclius has ever been depicted in (modern) pop culture. He's an important figure but from a time period that is extremely obscure to modern people. --Jfruh (talk) 17:42, 17 October 2006 (UTC)
  • Actually, Heraclius is portayed, and his reign forms much of the background of, the novel Theodore, by Christopher Harris (published in 2000 by Dedalus, ISBN 1 873982 49 6). Christopher Harris. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 88.139.196.118 (talk) 09:00, August 21, 2007 (UTC)
  • Heraclius features prominently in Frank Schaefer's novel Whose Song is Sung which covers the life of a 7th century Byzantine courtier. Tor Books; 1st ed edition (March 1996)
  • The colorful 17th century play Heraclius, empereur d'Orient: tragedie by Pierre Cornielle is also of interest. See the introduction to Kaegi's book for more treatments of Heraclius across the centuries. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 88.243.205.83 (talk) 15:07, August 27, 2007 (UTC)

Why is the quotation "Of the characters conspicuous in history, that of Heraclius..." credited to Milman? It was written by Edward Gibbon, Milman is his curator, who added notes noticing Gibbon's mistakes, but the REAL writer of the quotation is the GREAT Edward Gibbon. Please, give to Gibbon what is Gibbon's, and give to Milman what is Milman's.--87.20.144.100 (talk) 12:23, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

Byzantine Empire[edit]

For the argument about whether to use "Byzantine Empire" or "Roman Empire" naming standards please see Nomenclature of the Byzantine Empire -- Esemono (talk) 14:46, 21 October 2009 (UTC)

Palaiologos-Dynasty-Eagle.svg
Before discussing the etymology of the Byzantine Empire, please visit the relevant archived discussionsTalk:Byzantine_Empire#Well.

Without Citation[edit]

This from the article: "In the Islamic world, he is seen as something of an ideal ruler who studied the Qur'an, was a true believer of Islam, and viewed Muhammad as the true prophet, the messenger of God." Forgive my ignorance, I have never heard of such a thing. When and how did Heraclitus study the Koran? I see that later in the article there are citations for the claims, but I think it's significant that there are no non-Muslim sources for such ideas. This speaks to their credibility. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Cutugno (talkcontribs) 12:15, 22 April 2010 (UTC)

Heraclius' Empire was a neighbour of the growing Islamic Empire. Copies of the Koran were in large supply especially by the Eastern Orthodox church who were investigating whether or not Muhammad was a real prophet, they decided he wasn't obviously. As a leading scholar of Christianity its only natural he would have some copies. The article doesn't say Heraclitus was a true Muslim it says "In the Islamic world" they said he was, big difference. -- Esemono (talk) 13:06, 22 April 2010 (UTC)
Reading and writing Arabic was not so diffused at the time of Heraclius. The story about his reading Koran is a pure islamic legend, I'm afraid. --Cloj (talk) 21:24, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
Who said anything about reading Arabic Korans? -- Esemono (talk) 22:00, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
It is my understanding that the Koran was not written down until some 100 years after the time of the Prophet. If so, then Heraclius did not read it. Cutugno (talk) 06:28, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
There were copies while Muhammad was alive but the official copies weren't made until he died in 632. Heraclius lived till 641 and he discussed religious stances with Muhammad while the man was still alive.-- Esemono (talk) 10:06, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I am doubtful about those stories in precicely the same way as I am about claims of miraculous conversions in the European Vitae Sanctorum. It certainly deserves a mention in the text that muslim tradition portrays Heraclius as very pro-islamic, but that is as far as I would go. The notion that the caesaropapist ruler of Christianity was a very likely candidate for conversion seems straight out laughable. No offence to the readily offended, but the counterpart would be a Christian source claiming that Heraclius managed to shake Muhammad's belief in Islam by a letter and the testimony of a christian dignitary. Trigaranus (talk) 11:54, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
A) Wikipedia isn't about the truth it's about Verifiability. Reliable sources say (peer reviewed journals I might add) that Muslims believe Heraclius tried to convert to Islam. B) The article totally agrees with what you say. The article doesn't say Heraclius converted to Islam it says: "some Muslims consider him ...", "In Muslim tradition he is seen as ...", "Islamic histories even go so far as claiming...", etc. -- Esemono (talk) 12:23, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Yup, totally with you. I'm fine with the article, it was just a comment on what has been said here. Trigaranus (talk) 13:17, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

"There were copies [of the Koran] while Muhammad was alive but the official copies weren't made until he died in 632." Esemono, I must ask respectfully, are you making this up as you go along? Talk about VERIFIABILITY (or in this case the lack of). Cutugno (talk) 16:20, 29 April 2011 (UTC)

That's the problem with dealing with "works of God" like the Bible and Koran. Believers believe that these books are protected by God and so are direct from God's mouth and so there is no difference between the early books and the versions that exist hundreds of years later. But you're right verifiability is paramount so I've tracked down the sources and put in what can be verified. -- Esemono (talk) 02:48, 5 May 2011 (UTC)


All points above are moot as Islamic histories such as hadith are accepted as historical data for that region and time period due to lack of sources. And to the people arguing that it is not credible because they come from muslim sources this is a huge mistake, if historians used this as a qualifier we would dismiss 90% of the history of the world because history is rarely recorded by 3rd party sources. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historiography_of_early_Islam — Preceding unsigned comment added by 98.213.131.72 (talk) 21:22, 12 August 2011 (UTC)

Theodore =Theodore?[edit]

Another question: I read in the lemma Theodore Trithyrius: "Heraclius stripped him (i.e. his brother Theodore) off his command and sent him to Constantinople. With Theodore gone, Heraclius appointed Trithyrius to take lead as the commander of his brother's army, meanwhile here we can read that the brother of the Emperor was Trithyrius. I'm afraid here we find a mistake. Can anything help us, please?--Cloj (talk) 21:24, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

It's confusing as both men are named Theodore. But cleared it up in the article as it should read Theodore, Heraclius' brother, was removed from power and replaced with Theodore Trithyrius-- Esemono (talk) 08:01, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Islam edit war in the Intro[edit]

As per WP:Lead Section: "The lead section should briefly summarize the most important points covered in an article in such a way that it can stand on its own as a concise version of the article. " The information in the intro is not "Muslim propaganda" as you so put it but a brief summary of the "Islamic view of the Emperor" which is important as he is highly regarded by the Muslim world. Further more no one is saying that Heraclius was Muslim but that the Koran CLAIMS he is. This nothing to do with, in your POV statements, what you call "Muslim propaganda." It's a NPOV observation that is notable since there are over a billion Muslims in the world. -- Esemono (talk) 06:41, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

I'm not saying the Islamic view should not be in the introduction. I'm saying it should not be in the introduction if there is not a sufficient balance of religious views in the introduction. If you wish to enhance the introduction by including the Islamic view, then simply summarize the Christian view first and then insert the Islamic view below it. Otherwise, the Islamic view is out of place. Also, "something of an ideal ruler" is vague, and should be clarified.--Tataryn77 (talk) 19:54, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
The Christian view being? I would say the Christine view is obvious, does it really need to be said they didn't think he was a Muslim? But if you are looking for everything to be spelled out what about this:

He was the first Emperor to engage the Muslims, and in the Islamic world, he is seen as an ideal ruler who studied the Qur'an, was a true believer of Islam, and viewed Muhammad as the true prophet, the messenger of God.[1] Christians dispute that he was a convert of Islam.

Seems like overkill to me. -- Esemono (talk) 03:28, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

Heraclius was involved extensively in religious matters, including some mentioned at the bottom of the introduction - below the Muslim view. Monothelitism, his marriage to Martina, his relationship with Patriarch Sergius, and the recovery of the True Cross are all more noteworthy religion related matters and should be above any Muslim views of Heraclius. Understand now?--Tataryn77 (talk) 04:58, 16 November 2010 (UTC)
So if I moved the sentence to later in the intro you would drop your objections? -- Esemono (talk) 13:53, 16 November 2010 (UTC)
Yes, if the topics I mentioned above are included also.--Tataryn77 (talk) 20:47, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

I think it should be noted that the Muslim tradition of Heraclius as a secret-convert are based on early Muslim writings that most Western historians view as "profoundly kerygmatic" (Lawrence I. Conrad. "Heraclius in Early Islamic Kerygma." In The Reign of Heraclius. Edited by Reinink and Stolte. (Leuven, Paris: Peeters, 2002)) and that "enormous difficulties exist" (same source) in using these sources for actual history. While the Muslim viewpoint may be valuable, you can't really include it without noting that virtually every Western historian, regardless of their own faith, would regard the idea that Heraclius "was a true believer of Islam" with skepticism. The point is that the Islamic viewpoint is contentious, and that if it's going to be included in the introduction there has to be a note mentioning that fact in a more explicit way than that "some Muslims" think etc. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 75.3.137.55 (talk) 05:13, 6 April 2011 (UTC)


No muslim Historians nor anywhere in the Islamic histories or in the Hadith does it say that Heraclius was ever a true believer of Islam. The most it hints to is that he almost converted but was met with resistance by his council and never did. That is not the point of confrontation. The point of confrontation is that the article addresses Islamic Histories as fables. Most of these people do not know what Hadith are and think of it like the Bible when it is not. It is a collection of first hand stories collected by argueably the most thorough Islamic Historian the world has ever known. The people who collected Hadith were not taking the word of anyone who gave them any info. many times they have 6 different narrations of the same event from 6 different people, not one random story from one guy making things up. The narration of the Muslims going to Heraclius to seek refuge in his kingdom is Historical fact which is not in dispute. El-Cheikh gives a ridiculous point, based on nothing and is in fact contrary to any evidence we have, that Heraclius thought that these people were a sect of the Jews and he never met with a Muslim convoy, which is false as these people came to present the message of a new prophet and the religion of Islam, which Heraclius would have known is no sect of Judaism as he was a renown christian scholar and had other scholars among him. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 75.21.146.203 (talk) 22:07, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

For what it's worth there are voluminous writings about the different Roman emperors variously claiming that they were deities, devils, magicians, and monsters (not figuratively but literally). The difference between most of those writings and what appears in the Bible or the Koran is that whereas those other writings are seen by most people today as superstition or propaganda, many of us take the Koran and/or the Bible very seriously. Nevertheless from a historical perspective these books are not considered scientifically authoritative. In other words, saying "esteemed Roman historian X says this but the Koran says that" is misleading in that a religious text should not be put on the same level as recognized historians who use modern standards for historiography. It is not a matter of whether the Koran is correct or not; the issue is whether the author has applied modern, verifiable scientific standards that are broadly recognized. --192.88.165.35 (talk) 19:24, 5 October 2011 (UTC)

Problematic terminology[edit]

The article currently changes randomly between use of the terms Byzantine, Greek, and Roman. To those not intimately familiar with Roman history this is very confusing. I would propose

  • Introduce him as the "Byzantine, or Eastern Roman, emperor".
  • Decide whether or not to use Byzantine or Roman for the rest of the article and use the term consistently.
  • Avoid using the national term Greek. Most modern scholars avoid the term in this context anyway and does nothing but further confuse the issue.

--192.88.165.35 (talk) 18:41, 5 October 2011 (UTC)

Persecution of Jews[edit]

It seems this article has completely ignored the level to which Heraclius persecuted the Jews. He had tens of thousands killed, destroyed synagogues and outlawed Judaism. In fact, from what I gather, he was among the worst of his contemporaries in that respect. Why isn't this mentioned in the article?

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/biography/heraclius.html

"Heraclius ordered forced conversion for all Jews in the Byzantine Empire, but the order was carried out only in Carthage. Heraclius asked the king of the Franks to kill all Jews, but he refused. " — Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.155.141.161 (talk) 18:15, 4 April 2013 (UTC)

  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference El-Cheikh_p._18 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).