The Byzantines had a remarkably sophisticated approach to politics and military strategy. Unlike most of their contemporaries, they learnt very early in their history that winning a battle did not necessarily win a war, and they frequently bought off their enemies with treaties and bribes rather than squander men and matï¿½riel in potentially fruitless campaigns. The Byzantine army of the 10th and early 11th centuries, at the height of its power and efficiency, was the best-organised, best-trained, best-equipped and highest-paid in the known world. This splendid book by Ian Heath examines the Byzantine Armies from 886-1118, including the lusty, hard-fighting, hard-drinking 'barbarian' Varangian guard.
Introduction . Organization . The Tagmata . The Varangian Guard . The Theme System . The Terrible Day: Manzikert 1071 . The Post-Manzikurt Period . The Plates