Byzantine Echoes in the Nineteenth Century Press and in the Writings of Russian intellectuals
This article traces the sources of allusions to the Byzantine Empire and the reasons for their presence in the writings of intellectuals and the press in 19th century Russia, outlining the major ideological and scholarly trends in which the Byzantine Empire was mentioned, referred or alluded to. The allusions or ‘echoes’ are analyzed in three contexts depending on the source type and the targeted audience: the writings of intellectuals, newspapers, and the declarations of war against Turkey. This three-layered analysis gives insights into the mechanisms of the Byzantine myth and the ways it worked within the structure of everyday life and the media. Ishow that Byzantine echoes were most present in the writings of intellectuals who attempted to give an outside overview of Russian geopolitics or historical development at the level of higher politics, including the opinions of foreign politicians.