About our staff
Dr Foteini Spingou
DPhil (Oxon), MPhil (Oxon), BA Hon.
Research Fellow in Byzantine Intellectual/Cultural History
Research Fellow in Byzantine Intellectual/Cultural History
Affiliated research centres
Foteini Spingou specialises in the cultural and intellectual history of the medieval Mediterranean world (and Byzantium in particular). Her research focuses on the period from the ninth to the first half of the fourteenth centuries. Her areas of research and teaching include the history of collections and collecting, visual and textual aesthetics, manuscript culture from the late antique east to the early modern times, and the construction of identity in imperial societies and cultures.
Born in Nice, France, and raised in Athens, Greece, Dr Spingou earned her first degree in Greek Philology from the University of Athens (2007). She subsequently received a MPhil (History/Wolfson, 2010) and a DPhil (MML/Keble, 2013) from the University of Oxford. Before joining Edinburgh University, Dr Spingou conducted research for the Department of Art and Archaeology of Princeton University, the Classics Faculty of Oxford University, the Pontifical Institute for Mediaeval Studies (University of Toronto), and the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection (Harvard University). Her research has received recognition from a number of sources, including the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture, the A. S. Onassis Foundation, the A.G. Leventis Foundation, and the Nikos & Lydia Tricha Foundation for Education and European Culture. Dr Spingou has taught at a number of institutions, including the University of Oxford and the Open Universities in Greece and Cyprus.
Secretrary of the Classical Association of Scotland (Edinburgh and South East)
Member of the Editorial Team of the Journal of Modern Hellenism
Research visitor, Classics Faculty, Oxford
Summary of research interestsPlaces:
- Ancient Civilisations
- Comparative & Global History
- Landscapes & Monuments
- Language & Literature
- Medieval & Renaissance
- Early Modern
Spingou’s first book, Poetry for the Komnenoi: Syllogae B, C of the Anthologia Marciana for Oxford University Press (in preparation) presents for the first time a vast anthology of unattributed poetry from the twelfth century. The poems Anthologia Marciana date from the twelfth century and they are to be found in a single manuscript in Venice. The texts offer new insights to the intellectual and political history of the Medieval Europe, West Asia and North Africa, as they reveal otherwise unattested events, patrons, and social behaviours. The book reveals the use of poetry as a commodity in Byzantium and presents texts that in their majority were to be inscribed on objects or performed in a particular occasion and then to disgarded
The volume Textual and Visual Culture in Later Byzantium (c.1081– c.1350) for Cambridge University Press (in print) explores the full range of the connotations of the Byzantine aesthetics in the Medieval world. The volume includes 180 medieval sources in nine medieval languages that refer to the Byzantine visual culture. Each source is presented in its original language preceeded by a short introduction and an annotated English translation. The content list in full can be found here.
Dr Spingou has also published on a wide range of topics, including poetry, dialogues, epistolography, political theology in Byzantium, the interplay between religious rituals and literature, as well as medieval mathematics.
Current research activities
See Dr Spingou's profile in PAIXUE
Books - Edited
Spingou, F. (ed.) (forthcoming) Visual Arts, Material Culture, and Literature in Later Byzantium. Cambridge University Press
Spingou, F. (2018) Γράμμα από την φυλακή: Η φυλακή ως συλλογική εμπειρία στο έργο του Μιχαήλ Γλυκά και του Καισάριου Δαπόντε. Mandragoras, 2018, pp. 76–79
Spingou, F. (2016) John IX Patriarch of Jerusalem in Exile: A “Holy Man” from Mar Saba to St Diomedes/New Zion. Byzantinische Zeitschrift, 109(1), pp. 179–206DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/bz-2016-0010
Spingou, F. (2015) Snapshots from the eleventh century: The Lombards from Bari, a chartoularios from “Petra”, and the complex of Mangana. Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies, 39(1), pp. 50–65DOI: https://doi.org/10.1179/0307013114Z.00000000052
Spingou, F. (2015) Thinking about letters: The epistolary of “Leo the Wise”. The Annual of Medieval Studies at Central European University, 21, pp. 177-192
Spingou, F. (2014) “Pōs dei euriskein to daktylion”: Byzantine game or a problem from Fibonacci’s Liber Abaci?. Byzantion; revue internationale des etudes byzantines, 84, pp. 357–369
Spingou, F. (2012) Revisiting Lips Monastery. The Inscription at the Theotokos Church Once Again. The Byzantinist, pp. 16–19
Spingou, F. (2011) A poem on the refortification of Dorylaion in 1075. Byzantina Symmeikta, 21, pp. 137-168DOI: https://doi.org/10.12681/byzsym.1029
Spingou, F. (2006) Οἱ χαιρετισμοὶ τῆς Πανηγυρικῆς Α´ τοῦ ἁγ. Νεοφύτου τοῦ Ἐγκλείστου. Epistimoniki Epetirida tis Philosophikis sholis tou Panepistemiou Athenon , pp. 159–171
Spingou, F. (2019) Byzantine collections and anthologies of poetry. In: Hörandner, W., Rhoby, A. and Zagklas, N. (eds.) A Companion to Byzantine Poetry. Leiden; Boston: Brill, pp. 381-403DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004392885_017
Spingou, F. (2019) Ritual and politics in the Pantocrator: A lament in two acts for Piroska's son. In: Sághy, M. and Ousterhout, R. (eds.) Piroska and the Pantokrator: Dynastic Memory, Healing and Salvation in Komnenian Constantinople. Central European University Press, pp. 305-322
Spingou, F. (2017) A Platonising dialogue from the twelfth century: The logos of Soterichos Panteugenos. In: Cameron, A. and Gaul, N. (eds.) Dialogue and Debate from Late Antiquity to Late Byzantium. Taylor & Francis, pp. 123–136
Spingou, F. (2017) The supreme power of the armour and the veneration of the Emperor’s body in twelfth-century Byzantium. In: Mroziewicz , K. and Sroczyński, A. (eds.) Premodern Rulership and Contemporary Political Power: The King’s Body Never Dies. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, pp. 47–72DOI: https://doi.org/10.5117/9789462983311
Spingou, F. (2014) The anonymous poets of the Anthologia Marciana: Questions of collection and authorship. In: Pizzone, A. (ed.) The Author in Middle Byzantine Literature: Modes, Functions, and Identities. Degruyter, pp. 137–150DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/9781614515197.139