Philaretos the Almsgiver

   The vita (q.v.) of this saint, who died in 792, is important for what it reveals about conditions in northeastern Asia Minor (q.v.) in the eighth century, particularly about the destructive effects ofArab raids and the encroachments of powerful magnates (the dynatoi [q.v.]). Philaretos came from a wealthy Armenian family, whose landholdings were impoverished by Arab raids. The saint gave away much of his property, and his neighbors, some of whom were powerful magnates, took the rest. The family fortunes were restored only when his granddaughter Maria was chosen as wife for Constantine VI in a bride show (qq.v.) in 788.

Historical Dictionary of Byzantium . .

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  • Gangra —    Metropolis of Paphlagonia (qq.v.), in Asia Minor (q.v.), site of a local council held around 341 to condemn extremist monks who followed the teachings of Eustathios of Sebasteia (q.v.). Gangra suffered attacks by Arabs (q.v.) in the eighth… …   Historical dictionary of Byzantium

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