Pulcheria

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Pulcheria
Empress of the Byzantine Empire
Pulcheria Coin.JPG
Coin of Aelia Pulcheria
Reign Augusta 414 – 450,
28 July 450 – July 453
Coronation 28 July 450
Predecessor Aelia Eudocia
Successor Verina
Born 19 January 398 or 399
Constantinople
Died July 453
Probably Constantinople
Spouse Marcian
Full name
Aelia Pulcheria
House House of Theodosius
Dynasty Theodosian
Father Arcadius
Mother Aelia Eudoxia
St. Aelia Pulcheria
Empress of the Byzantine Empire
Born 19 January 398 or 399
Constantinople
Died July 453
Probably Constantinople
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Canonized Pre-Congregation[1]
Feast 10 September (Roman Catholic Church)

St. Aelia Pulcheria /ˈliə pʌlˈkɪriə/ (19 January 398 or 399 – July 453[2]) was the second (and oldest surviving) child of Byzantine Emperor Arcadius and Empress Aelia Eudoxia.

In 415, the fifteen-year old Pulcheria took over the reins of government as the guardian of her younger brother Theodosius II[3] and was also proclaimed "Augusta" (Empress). Pulcheria had significant, though changing, political power during her brother's reign. When Theodosius II died on 26 July 450, Pulcheria provided a successor by marrying Marcian on 25 November 450, while simultaneously not violating her vow of virginity. She died three years later, in July 453.

Pulcheria greatly influenced the Christian Church and its theological development by guiding two of the most important ecumenical councils in ecclesiastical history, namely those of Ephesus and Chalcedon, in which the Church ruled on christological issues. The Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church subsequently recognized her as a saint.[4]

Early life[edit]

Pulcheria was born into the royal House of Theodosius, a dynasty of the later Roman Empire, ruling in Constantinople. Her parents were Eastern Roman Emperor Arcadius and Empress Aelia Eudoxia. Pulcheria's older sister, Flaccilla, was born in 397 but probably died young. Her younger siblings were Arcadia (born in 400), Theodosius II, the future emperor (born in 401) and Marina (born in 401).[5]

Arcadius' reign was marked by the conflict between his imperious wife and the Archbishop of Constantinople St. John Chrysostom[6] Sozomen reports that much of the rivalry was based on an ornate statue made in the honor of Eudoxia which Chrysostom condemned: "The silver statue of the empress ... was placed upon a column of porphyry; and the event was celebrated by loud acclamations, dancing, games, and other manifestations of public rejoicing ... John declared that these proceedings reflected dishonor on the [C]hurch."[7] Also according to Sozomen, Chrysostom had condemned the Empress for her grandiose style in his sermons, which enraged her and resulted in Chrysostom's immediate deposition. Later in life, Pulcheria returned the relics of St. John Chrysostom and installed them for the Church, in gratitude for his pious life.[8]

Sister of the Emperor[edit]

Eudoxia died in 404, and Emperor Arcadius in 408. They left behind four young children, including Theodosius II, then 7 years of age, who had been his father's nominal co-Emperor since 402 and who now become Emperor himself. Two praetorian prefects named Anthemius and Antiochus at first handled government affairs. Upon coming of age at 15 years, Pulcheria deemed that her family no longer needed Antiochus, and consequently Theodosius dismissed him from office, and thereafter she acted as her brother's guardian:[9] Pulcheria was also proclaimed "Augusta" and Empress[citation needed]. At the same time, Pulcheria made a vow of virginity,[4] probably to keep off pontential suitors. After this, the imperial palace assumed a monastic tone in comparison with her mother's palace. Sozomen describes the pious ways of Pulcheria and her sisters in his Ecclesiastical History:

"They all pursue the same mode of life; they are sedulous in their attendance in the house of prayer, and evince great charity towards strangers and the poor...and pass their days and their nights together in singing the praises of God."[10]

Rituals within the imperial palace included chanting and reciting passages of sacred scripture and fasting twice per week.[11] The sisters relinquished luxurious jewelry and apparel which most women of the imperial court wore. Pulcheria also provided all the instruction necessary for Theodosius to be a successful emperor when he would come of age.

"Although the empire was technically to be ruled by Theodosius II when he would come of age, his older sister Pulcheria exercised such profound influence over him all his life that she must be considered the co-regent of the empire until her death in 453. In fact it can be said without exaggeration that Pulcheria gave the identity to her brother's reign."[12]

Pulcheria's training of Theodosius included

...how an Emperor must walk, and ride his horse, alone or in procession; how he should sit upon his throne: how to wear his Imperial armor and robes; and how to speak with dignity. By no means must he yield to loud laughter...[13]

Not only did Pulcheria train her brother in the duties and customs of imperial office, but she also ensured that Theodosius was trained to become a pious Christian leader. According to many historians, upon coming of age to rule as sole Emperor, Theodosius ignored the teachings of his sister.

"He was by nature kind, affable, easily led ... Not only was he foolishly kind; he was careless, and often he was to neglect his duty in the administration of his Empire."[14]

The lack of determined leadership by Theodosius motivated Pulcheria to assume greater authority and influence over the Empire.

Vow of Virginity[edit]

At the time Pulcheria proclaimed herself guardian of her brother, in an act of piety she also took a vow of virginity, and her sisters followed her example. Sozomen explains that:

"She devoted her virginity to God, and instructed her sisters to do likewise. To avoid cause of scandal and opportunities for intrigue, she permitted no man to enter her palace. In confirmation of her resolution she took God, the priests, and all the subjects of the Roman empire as witnesses..."[15]

In a letter from Pope Leo I, a contemporary of Pulcheria, he complimented her great piety and despisement of the errors of heretics.[16] But it is possible that Pulcheria may have had another motive to remain unmarried. According to Sozomen, Socrates Scholasticus, and Theodoret, Pulcheria deeply disliked Anthemius, the former guardian of Theodosius;[17] and the reason may have been his distaste for her great political power and unwillingness to permit Anthemius to gain it at court. A more recent historian, Kenneth Holum, states that Anthemius had tried to marry into the imperial family.[18] Pulcheria would have had to relinquish her power to a potential husband.

Role as Augusta Imperatrix[edit]

In 414 the Roman Senate gave Pulcheria the title of Augusta. Although a woman, Empress Pulcheria was treated as an equal among men at court. In the Senate of Constantinople a bust was erected in her honor along with those of other Augusti.[19]

The Church and Judaism[edit]

Many important events occurred during her time as Augusta and her brother's reign as Emperor; however, Pulcheria’s influence was mostly ecclesiastical. Pulcheria and her brother were known to have harbored anti-Jewish sentiments, and both enacted laws against Jewish worship in the capital. Before the reign of Theodosius II, synagogues were treated as private property and protected by the imperial government. Theodosius enacted a law that forbade the construction of synagogues and required the destruction of those in existence. Pulcheria and Theodosius also ordered the execution of a group of Jews after strife among Christians emerged in Palestine.[20] Kenneth Holum writes "Pulcheria had long nursed a special hatred for Jews, and the Nestorian heresy, which appeared to contemporaries to be of Jewish origin, no doubt served to confirm that hatred."[21] Nonetheless, these political acts can not necessarily be construed as religious or ethnic hatred in the contemporary sense, especially given the paucity of historical data.

Pulcheria was also famous for her philanthropy. She erected many churches and buildings for the poor in and around Constantinople.[22] Pulcheria's building projects in Constantinople were so vast that a whole district was named the Pulcherianai in her honor.[23] As well as contributing new churches and districts to the City, Pulcheria contributed significantly to the Christian Church by reinstating bishops who were unjustly dismissed and returning the remains of others, such as Flavian, as relics of the Church.[24]

War with Persia[edit]

Pulcheria's time as Augusta also was marked by war and ongoing conflict with Sassanid Persia. Pulcheria called for war against Persia when Persian King Yazdegerd I executed a Christian bishop who had destroyed a Zoroastrian altar.[25] Under the influence of Pulcheria, Theodosius sent troops into battle with fanatical fervor, described by Sozomen as "ready to do anything for the sake of Christianity."[25] Pulcheria and Theodosius were victorious and, according to historians, Theodosius credited his sister's vow of virginity as the reason for victory.[26] Theodosius thus made his sister's virginity a tool of war propaganda, and because of her vow to be faithful only to God, the hand of God would help Roman troops in battle against Persia. Pulcheria's power would become even greater after the death of her brother, Theodosius II.

Relationship with Aelia Eudocia[edit]

The relationship between Pulcheria and Aelia Eudocia, Theodosius II's wife, was strained. The two women over the years had developed a rivalry based on their different backgrounds and religious beliefs. Eudocia was originally named Athenais and was born in Athens to a Greek philosopher and a professor of rhetoric. When her father died, he left her with little means, only "one hundred gold coins".[27] She visited her aunt in Constantinople out of desperation. On 7 June 421, Theodosius married Athenais, but her name was changed to Eudocia.[28] The rivalry between the 2 women was motivated by Eudocia's envy of Pulcheria's power in court.[29]

Together Eudocia and the chief minister, the eunuch Chrysaphius, convinced Theodosius to rely less on the influence of his sister and more on that of his new wife. This caused Pulcheria to leave the imperial palace and live in "...Hebdomon, a seaport seven miles from Constantinople."[30] The rivalry of Eudocia and Pulcheria came to a head when Eudocia departed for the Holy Land and, for a time, openly supported monastic Monophysitism.[31] Eudocia's open opposition to the doctrine of the "Theotokos" of the Blessed Virgin Mary was an open opposition to Pulcheria as well.

Empress[edit]

While hunting on horseback in 450, Theodosius II fell from his horse and injured his spine; he died 2 days later from the injury.[5] Pulcheria then returned to court and openly fought Crysaphius. She reigned over the Empire alone for about one month after the death of Theodosius, and it is assumed that her duties primarily consisted of arranging the public funeral of Theodosius.[32] Although Pulcheria was respected as an authority in Rome, the Roman Senate would not permit a woman to be sole ruler of the Empire. Therefore, Pulcheria was forced to marry and rule the Empire with a husband. Regarding her vow of virginity, she performed the religious rituals necessary to both honor her vow and enter a legitimate marriage.[33] She married Marcian, who was a tribune and close associate of the Germanic General Aspar. Marcian's origins were quite civilian in comparison to those of previous emperors: "Marcian was a man of little substance, with no ancient aristocratic or imperial blood. He was Roman, however, and thus the bond of kedeia at once communicated eligibility for basileia."[32] One condition of the marriage was that Marcian obey and respect Pulcheria's vow of virginity, and he complied with it.[4] In order for the marriage to not seem scandalous to the Roman state, the Church proclaimed that "Christ himself sponsored the union and it therefore should not provoke shock or unjustified suspicions."[34] After their marriage, Pulcheria convinced Marcian to execute Chrysaphius.

Ecclesiastical conflicts[edit]

The First Council of Ephesus, held in 431 in Theodosius's reign, involved 2 rival bishops: Nestorius, who was Archbishop of Constantinople, and Cyril, the Patriarch of Alexandria.[35] The historian Averil Cameron described the conflict between them thus:

"The issue was whether, and, if so, how, Christ had two natures; the Monophysites held that he had only a divine nature, while Nestorius, and 'Nestorians' after him, emphasized the human."[36]

Nestorius advocated diminishing the influence of the doctrine of the "Theotokos", i. e., "the one who gives birth to the One Who is God" or "Mother of God", in the Church. This conflicted with the religious beliefs of Pulcheria, being as she was a virgin empress, and a rivalry between them ensued. Underestimating Pulcheria's power, Nestorius propelled a smear campaign against her:

"Nestorius took specific action against Pulcheria. He implied that she enjoyed illicit sexual relations with at least seven lovers. He also would not accede to her demand that she be remembered in prayers as the 'bride of Christ' since she had been 'corrupted by men'. Most egregious of all, he effaced her image which he had removed from above the altar; and he refused to use her robe as an altar cover."[37]

Nestorius greatly underestimated Pulcheria's power, because she had him deposed and her ally, Eusibius, a court official, produced an anonymous document declaring that Nestorius was a heretic. Meanwhile, Cyril had already publicly condemned Nestorius and wrote to the imperial court stating that the doctrine of the "Theotokos" was correct. Nestorius then called for an ecclesiastical council.

The Council was dominated by Cyril.[38] With the Council at a standstill, Theodosius intervened to decide for it. Influenced by Pulcheria, the Emperor ruled in favor of Cyril, decreeing that the title of "Theotokos" was orthodox. He also deposed Nestorius and banished him to a monastery in Antioch.[39]

In 449, christological debates flared up again. Theodosius summoned another council to Ephesus, to resolve the disputes. At this council, Pope Leo I was the primary advocate for Pulcheria's claims of the doctrine; he

"...forcefully intervened, sending a long letter to Archbishop Flavian of Constantinople, in which he argued for the two natures, but questioned the legality of the recent condemnation of a certain Eutyches for denying them. At this the party of Dioscorus, Cyril's successor in Alexandria, having believed that Eutyches had renounced his heresy earlier,[40] was able to overturn the situation, whereupon Leo asked for a second council, calling that [council in] Ephesus the 'Robber Council."[41]

During this council, Flavian was beaten and died from his injuries. He was later declared a saint and martyr.

Two years later, Pulcheria and Marcian summoned the Council of Chalcedon, attended by 452 bishops. It condemned the doctrines of both Nestorius and Eutyches, developed the doctrines of Cyril and Pope Leo I into one, and it declared the doctrine of the "Theotokos" orthodox. Historian Avril Cameron explains what the Council of Chalcedon meant in greater detail: "It developed and clarified the creed of Nicaea, according to which God was Father, Son and Holy Spirit, by further proclaiming that Christ was at all times after the Incarnation fully God and fully human."[41]

Pulcheria devoted the last years of her life to the "Theotokos", and had three churches in Constantinople dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary: the Monastery of the Panagia Hodegetria, the Church of St. Mary of Blachernae, and the Chalkoprateia.[42]

Death and Veneration[edit]

On what day in 453 Pulcheria died is unknown.[43] She probably died in Constantinople. Her death shocked the people of Constantinople:

"Mention of her death in the chronicles confirms that her passing, like that of Flacilla [her grandmother], struck like an earthquake in the dynastic city. Unlike Eudocia [wife of the late Theodosius], she lived out her life in Constantinople and its suburbs, forming a bond with its people which even death could not sever." [44]

Even in her last days Pulcheria thought of ways to help the poor of Constantinople, for "in her will she reinforced that bond by instructing that all of her remaining wealth be distributed among the poor..."[44]

After her death, both the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church declared her a saint.[45]

Sacred Art[edit]

The Trier Ivory, representing a procession with royal figures theorized to depict Theodosius II and Pulcheria.


Pulcheria brought many holy relics to churches in Constantinople. The Trier Ivory, now housed in the treasury of Trier Cathedral, Germany, has been interpreted as depicting the installation of one of these relics. Historian Kenneth Holum describes the Ivory thus:

"On the Ivory Theodosius wears distinctive costume and inclines slightly forward, but essentially he remains only part of the cortege and thus of the ceremonial context. The direction of the wagon's movement inexorably toward the scene at the right, toward the diminutive woman clothed in the rich costume of an Augusta ... in it she deposited the holy relics."[46]

However, this interpretation is disputed,[47] and one recent opinion is that the ivory shows the later Empress Irene of the eighth century, who sponsored renovation of the Church.[48]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Her canonization precedes the practice of formal Canonization by the Holy See and the relevant Orthodox Churches.
  2. ^ "Saint Pulcheria", CatholicSaints.Info, http://catholicsaints.info/saint-pulcheria/
  3. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p. 97
  4. ^ a b c Women in World History: A biographical encyclopedia. Edited by Anne Commire and Deborah Klezmer. Waterford, Connecticut: Yorkin Publications. 1999-2002.
  5. ^ a b Jones, A.H.M, J.R. Martindale, and J. Morris. The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971.
  6. ^ “Although his reign (Arcadius) was short, it is remembered in part for the controversial conflicts Eudoxia encountered with John Chrysostom, bishop of Constantinople from 398 to 404." - Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.37
  7. ^ Sozomen. The Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen: Comprising a History of the Church from A.D. 324 to A.D. 440. Translated by Edward Walford. London: Henry G. Bohn. 1855. p.391
  8. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.184
  9. ^ "In 412 Pulcheria quarreled with Antiochus, who like Anthemius had served the dynasty faithfully for a number of years, and induced her brother to dismiss him from the duties of praepositus. She then took personal charge of the imperial family, directing its affairs with such authority that she became known in society at large as the emperor's guardian." Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.91
  10. ^ Sozomen. The Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen: Comprising a History of the Church from A.D. 324 to A.D. 440. Translated by Edward Walford. London: Henry G. Bohn. 1855. p.410
  11. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.91
  12. ^ Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.42
  13. ^ Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.123
  14. ^ Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.125
  15. ^ Sozomen. The Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen: Comprising a History of the Church from A.D. 324 to A.D. 440. Translated by Edward Walford. London: Henry G. Bohn. 1855.
  16. ^ "In it you clearly show how much you love the Catholic faith and how much you despise the errors of heretics." - Pope St. Leo the Great. St. Leo the Great: Letters. Translated by Brother Edmund Hunt, C.S.C. New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc. 1957. p.132
  17. ^ Chestnut, Glenn F. The First Christian Histories: Eusibius, Socrates, Sozomen, Theodoret and Evagrius. Macon, Georgia: Mercer University Press, 1986 2nd Ed.
  18. ^ “Married long since and many years Pulcheria’s senior, Anthemis naturally proposed a descendent or close relative, a grandson perhaps...born a few years earlier than Pulcheria and an excellent prospect for her hand” Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982.
  19. ^ Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994.
  20. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.98
  21. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p. 188
  22. ^ "Sozomen writes that it would take too much time to describe all the churches Pulcheria built, as well as hospitals and inns for the poor." - Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.49
  23. ^ "Some of these establishments were extensive enough to give the names of their proprietors to entire quarters of the city such as the 'Marina quarter' in the second region and the Pulcherianai in the eleventh." - Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.132
  24. ^ "...the entire Roman Church is most grateful to you for all the works of your faith, whether having assisted envoys in every way with devoted affection and for having brought back the Catholic bishops who were ejected from their churches by an unjust sentence, or for having brought back with fitting honor to the church he governed so well the remains of Flavian of holy memory, an innocent and Catholic bishop." Pope St. Leo the Great. St. Leo the Great: Letters. Translated by Brother Edmund Hunt, C.S.C. New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc., 1957. p.145.
  25. ^ a b Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.102
  26. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. pp.110-111
  27. ^ Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.125.
  28. ^ Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.126
  29. ^ "She had always felt jealous of her sister-in-law, Pulcheria, who for many years had held greater influence at Court then she herself had enjoyed, as Empress, as wife." - Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.146
  30. ^ Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.146
  31. ^ "But she had been brought up in Athens in pagan ways; she had ever been devoted to the literature of her native Greece." - Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972. p.164
  32. ^ a b Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.208
  33. ^ Garland (1999). Byzantine empresses: women and power in Byzantium, AD 527-1204. Routledge (London). p. 3. 
  34. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.209
  35. ^ Cameron, Averil. The Mediterranean World In Late Antiquity AD 395-600 London, Routledge, 1993. p.22-23
  36. ^ Cameron, Averil. The Mediterranean World In Late Antiquity AD 395-600 London, Routledge, 1993. p.23
  37. ^ Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.54
  38. ^ "The council was weighted heavily in favor of the Cyrillians, since they had 'planted' uncouth Alexandrians to heckle the Nestorians. They drove the emperor's ambassador and the Nestorian bishops out of the session, and then declared Nestorius a heretic." - Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.56
  39. ^ "Under such public pressure Theodosius succumbed to Pulcheria's demands and had Cyril's decree deposing Nestorius read in the Great Church. Nestorius was sent back to his monastery in Antioch..." - Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. pp.56-57.
  40. ^ The story of the Copts by Iris Habib el Masri - XVIII. The Rupture between the churches of the east and west
  41. ^ a b Cameron, Averil. The Mediterranean World In Late Antiquity AD 395-600 London, Routledge, p.23.
  42. ^ Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994. p.57
  43. ^ Jones, A.H.M, J.R. Martindale, and J. Morris. The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971.
  44. ^ a b Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.226.
  45. ^ "She became a saint of the church, both in West and in the East, where centuries later the faithful of Constantinople celebrated her memorial each year on September 10, bearing in mind her piety and virginity, her works of philanthropy and construction and especially her greatest triumph: 'she caused the holy synod to take place at Chalcedon'." Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.227
  46. ^ Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982. p.107
  47. ^ Wortley, John (Winter 1980). "The Trier Ivory Reconsidered". Roman and Byzantine Studies. 21 (4): 381–394. 
  48. ^ NIEWÖHNER, PHILIPP. "CBOMGS seminar: The Trier Ivory, the Icon of Christ on the Chalke Gate, empress Irene's triumph over Iconoclasm and the church of St Euphemia at the Hippodrome". University of Birmingham, UK. Retrieved 4 July 2014. 

References[edit]

  • Cameron, Averil. The Mediterranean World In Late Antiquity AD 395-600 London, Routledge,
  • Chestnut, Glenn F. The First Christian Histories: Eusibius, Socrates, Sozomen, Theodoret and Evagrius. Macon, Georgia: Mercer University Press, 1986 2nd Ed.
  • Duckett, Eleanor. Medieval Portraits from East and West. Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 1972.
  • Garland, Lynda. Byzantine empresses: women and power in Byzantium, AD 527-1204. London, Routledge, 1999.
  • Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press, 1982.
  • Jones, A.H.M, J.R. Martindale, and J. Morris. The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971.
  • Pope St. Leo the Great. St. Leo the Great: Letters. Translated by Brother Edmund Hunt, C.S.C. New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc. 1957.
  • Sozomen. The Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen: Comprising a History of the Church from A.D. 324 to A.D. 440. Translated by Edward Walford. London: Henry G. Bohn. 1855.
  • Teetgen, Ada B. The Life and Times of Empress Pulcheria: A.D. 399-A.D. 452. London: Swan Sonnenshein &Co., Lim. 1907.
  • Turpin, Joanne. Women in Church History: 20 Stories for 20 Centuries. Cincinnati, Ohio: St. Anthony Messenger Press. 1986.
  • Limberis, Vasiliki. Divine Heiress: The Virgin Mary and the Creation of Christian Constantinople. London and New York: Routledge, 1994.
  • Women in World History: a Biographical Encyclopedia. Edited by Anne Commire and Deborah Klezmer. Waterford, Connecticut: Yorkin Publications. 1999-2002.

External links[edit]

Pulcheria
Born: April 401 Died: 28 July 450
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Theodosius II
Byzantine Empress
450–453
Succeeded by
Marcian
Royal titles
Preceded by
Aelia Eudocia
Byzantine Empress consort
450–453
Succeeded by
Verina