John Synadenos (megas stratopedarches)

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John Komnenos Angelos Doukas Synadenos (Greek: Ἰωάννης Κομνηνός Ἄγγελος Δούκας Συναδηνός) was a Byzantine noble and military leader with the rank of megas stratopedarches during the reigns of Michael VIII Palaiologos (r. 1259–1282) and Andronikos II Palaiologos (r. 1282–1328).


Synadenos appears in 1276/1277, when, along with the megas konostaulos Michael Kaballarios, he led an army against the independent ruler of Thessaly, John I Doukas. The Byzantine army was routed at the Battle of Pharsalus, and Synadenos himself was captured, while Kaballarios was killed whilst trying to escape.[1][2][3] He was released or ransomed from captivity, and in 1281 he participated in the campaign against the Angevins in Albania which led to the Byzantine victory at Berat.[3][4] Finally, in 1283, he participated in another campaign against John Doukas, under Michael Tarchaneiotes.[2][3]

Eventually, Synadenos retired to a monastery with the monastic name Joachim. After his death (sometime between 1310 and 1328), his wife, Theodora Palaiologina, the daughter of Constantine Palaiologos, the half-brother of Michael VIII, became a nun with the name Theodule, and founded the Convent of the Mother of God Bebaia Elpis ("Certain Hope") in Constantinople. The convent's typikon (the so-called "Lincoln College typikon"), authored largely by Theodora, includes lavish depictions of the family's members.[2][5][6]


With Theodora, John had four children, who were reportedly all young when he died:[2][6]


  1. ^ Geanakoplos 1959, p. 297.
  2. ^ a b c d Guilland 1967, p. 505.
  3. ^ a b c d Polemis 1968, p. 179.
  4. ^ Geanakoplos 1959, pp. 331–333; Guilland 1967, pp. 176, 505.
  5. ^ Kazhdan 1991, pp. 275, 1990.
  6. ^ a b c Polemis 1968, pp. 179–180.
  7. ^ Guilland 1967, pp. 473, 505.
  8. ^ Polemis 1968, pp. 179, 181; Kazhdan 1991, p. 275.
  9. ^ Guilland 1967, pp. 226–227, 485–486, 505; Polemis 1968, pp. 179–181.