Despite this, substantial interchange occurred, which left its imprint on the various ecclesiastical polities involved in the process.
A period of disruption and regrouping, 1050-1150
By the time our period opens the course of large-scale Armenian resettlement in the former marchlands of eastern Cappadocia between the Byzantine and Arab spheres of influence was already well into its third and final phase. Beginning as a means of repopulating the area with Christians during the Byzantine advance under Basil 1 in the 880s, it gained greater momentum under Nikephoros II Phokas after 963, at which point Armenians grew to be the majority population. It culminated in the gradual relocation there of the royalty and much of the nobility of the three main western successor states to the Armenian kingdom re-established in 884.5 In 1022 King Sennek'erim-Yovhannes of Vaspurakan bequeathed his realm to the empire, under pressure both from the Byzantines and from the initial Seljuq incursions, and Asot IV of Ani followed suit in 1039. Armenians then became imperial vassals under an alien Byzantine bureaucratic structure, while their territories were reorganised as themes. 6
A parallel process can also be detected in ecclesiastical affairs, which brought into renewed contact Greek, Armenian andJacobite communities as well as the heretical Tondrakite sect, withvariedresults. One ofthese was the formation in the 980s on the initiative of Catholicos Xacik of Syrian and Armenian sees parallel to the Byzantine ones. Perhaps unforeseen by the court in Constantinople, this in turn provoked ethnic and religious polemic between the confessions over mutually unacceptable divergences in rite and doctrine. This resulted in the rebaptism of those faithful who altered their affiliation.7 The integration and neutralisation of Armenian secular authority encouraged the patriarchs of Constantinople in their attempts to suppress the Armenian catholicate. Catholicos Petros was called to Constantinople in 1045 for theological discussions, and again two years later. To counter pressure from the Byzantines he
5 S. P. Cowe, 'Armenian immigration patterns to Sebastia, tenth-eleventh centuries', UCLA International Conference on Armenia Minor-Sebastia/Sivas, ed. R. G. Hovannisian (Costa Mesa, CA: Mazda Publishers, 2004), 115-24.
6 See Robert Hewsen, Armenia: a historical atlas (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2001), 125-6.
7 The religious polemic led to exchanges between the Armenian catholicos and the Greek metropolitans of Sebasteia and Melitene as well as a succession ofJacobite patriarchs. It produced anti-Chalcedonian refutations by Anania Narekac'i (d.c.985) and his namesake Anania Sanahnec'i (d.c.1070).
Was this article helpful?