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The Two Eyes of the Earth

Art and Ritual of Kingship between Rome and Sasanian Iran

Matthew P. Canepa (Author), Peter Brown (Series Editor)

Available worldwide

Paperback, 456 pages
ISBN: 9780520294837
March 2017
$34.95, £28.00
Other Formats Available:
This pioneering study examines a pivotal period in the history of Europe and the Near East. Spanning the ancient and medieval worlds, it investigates the shared ideal of sacred kingship that emerged in the late Roman and Persian empires. Bridging the traditional divide between classical and Iranian history, this book brings to life the dazzling courts of two global powers that deeply affected the cultures of medieval Europe, Byzantium, Islam, South Asia, and China.
List of Illustrations
Sources and Abbreviations

1. Introduction
2. The Art and Ritual of Kingship Within and Between Rome and Sasanian Iran
3. The Lure of the Other and the Limits of the Past
4. Sapur I, King of Kings of Iran and Non-Iran
5. Rome’s Troubled Third Century and the Emergence of a New Equilibrium
6. Contested Images of Sacral Kingship and New Expressions of Triumph
7. Unceasing Embassies
8. City as Stage and Art as Statecraft
9. The Late Antique Kosmos of Power

Epilogue: The Legacy of the Two Eyes of the Earth

Matthew P. Canepa is Professor of Art History at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. He is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.
“This very good book is a welcome contribution to the study of the relationship between the Sasanian and Roman/Byzantine empires and is worthy of the prestigious series in which it appears.”—Bryn Mawr Classical Review (BMCR)
“This book is a true tour de force in the scholarship of the late ancient world. Canepa has bridged the traditional divide between Classical and Iranian studies to illuminate the long-running artistic dialogue between the late Roman and Sasanian Empires. Every chapter offers exciting new insights into the development of late antique art and rituals of power."—Joel Walker, author of The Legend of Mar Qardagh: Narrative and Christian Heroism in Late Antique Iraq

"The Two Eyes of the Earth is a masterly synthesis of a theme of the utmost importance for the political culture of the late antique world."—Peter Brown, author of Power and Persuasion

James H. Breasted Award, American Historical Association

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