Leontios 2

Prosopography of the Byzantine Empire
Dates695 (taq) / 705 (ob.)
PmbZ No.4547
Variant NamesLeontius;
Leontius (emperor)
LocationsConstantinople (officeplace);
Hellas (officeplace);
Constantinople (residence);
Anatolikoi (officeplace);
Constantinople (residence);
Dalmatos (Monastery of, Constantinople) (residence);
Dalmatos (Monastery of, Constantinople);
Isauria (birthplace)
TitlesPatrikios (dignity);
Augustus (office);
Emperor (office);
Strategos, Anatolikoi (office);
Strategos, Hellas (office)
Textual SourcesBar Hebraeus, Chronographia, tr. E. A. W. Budge, The Chronography of Abu 'l-Faraj (London, 1932; repr. Amsterdam, 1976) (history);
Chronicon Anonymi ad annum 1234 pertinens, ed. and tr. J.-B. Chabot, I = CSCO 81-82 (Paris, 1916-20), II = CSCO 109 (Louvain, 1937) (chronicle);
Chronicon Anonymum ad annum 819 pertinens, ed. Aphram Barsaum (CSCO 81, 1920), trans. J.-B. Chabot, CSCO 109, Scriptores Syri 56 (Louvain, 1937) (chronicle);
Chronicon ad annum Domini 846 pertinens, ed. E. W. Brooks, tr. J.-B. Chabot, CSCO 3-4 (Louvain, 1904); also tr. E. W. Brooks, "A Syriac Chronicle of the Year 846", Zeitschrift der deutschen morgenländ (chronicle);
Chronique de Denys de Tell-Mahré, ed. and tr. J.-B. Chabot (Paris, 1895); tr. A. Palmer, The Seventh Century in West-Syrian Chronicles (Liverpool, 1993), pp. 54-65 (chronicle);
Constantine Porphyrogenitus, De Administrando Imperio, ed. G. Moravcsik, trans. R. J. H. Jenkins (Washington, D.C., 1967) (history);
Liber Pontificalis, ed. L. Duchesne, Le liber pontificalis. Texte, introduction et commentaire, 2 vols. (Paris, 1886-92); re-issued with 3rd vol. by C. Vogel, (Paris, 1955-57) (chronicle);
Nicephorus, Breviarium Historiae, ed. C. Mango, Nikephoros, Patriarch of Constantinople: Short History; prev. ed. C. de Boor Nicephori ArchiepiscopiConstantinopolitani Opuscula Historica Leipzig 1880 (history);
Paulus Diaconus, Historia Gentis Langobardorum, ed. L. Bethmann and G. Waitz, MGH, Scr. Rer. Lang., pp. 12-187; also in MGH, Scr. Rer. Ger. 48, pp. 49-242 (history);
Theophanes Confessor, Chronographia, ed. C. de Boor, 2 vols. (Leipzig, 1883-85, repr. Hildesheim/NewYork, 1980); tr. and comm. C. Mango and R. Scott, The Chronicle of Theophanes Confessor, Oxford 1997 (chronicle);
Zonaras = Ioannis Zonarae Epitome Historiarum, libri XIII-XVIII, ed. Th. Büttner-Wobst, (Bonn, 1897) (history)

Leontios 2 was a native of Isauria: Nic. Brev. de Boor 37, Mango 40 (see below). Probably identical with Leontios 1. He was a patrikios in 695: Nic. Brev. de Boor 37-38, Mango 40 (cited below), Theoph. AM 6187 (cited below), Chron. 1234, §151 (p. 297) (L'wntyws p'tryqws). Earlier he was strategos of the Anatolikoi and had had a distinguished career until the emperor Justinian II (Ioustinianos 1) imprisoned him (in 692) (cf. Leontios 1); he remained in prison for three years until 695, when Ioustinianos 1 released him, appointed him strategos of Hellas, and ordered him to leave Constantinople immediately to take up his post: Nic. Brev. de Boor 37, Mango 40:1-6 (Λεόντιον δέ τινα πατρίκιον ἐκ τῆς τῶν Ἰσαύρων ὁρμώμενον χώρας καὶ στρατηγὸν γενόμενον τοῦ ἀνατολικοῦ καλουμένου στρατεύματος ... στρατηγὸν τῆς Ἑλλάδος προβάλλεται), Theoph. AM 6187 (Λεόντιος δὲ ὁ πατρίκιος καὶ στρατηγὸς τῶν ἀνατολικῶν γενόμενος καὶ ἐν πολέμοις εὐδοκιμήσας ἐν φρουρᾷ τε χρόνους τρεῖς ποιήσας, κατηγορηθεὶς ἐξάπινα ἀνεκλήθη καὶ στρατηγὸς Ἑλλάδος προεβλήθη). Encouraged by two friends, Paulos 8 and Gregorios 4, who had both once foretold the throne for him, Leontios 2 rebelled and overthrew Justinian II (Ioustinianos 1), mutilating his nose and tongue and exiling him to Cherson: Nic. Brev. de Boor 37-38, Mango 40, Theoph. AM 6187, Zon. XIV 22. 29-33, cf. Chron. 1234, §151 (p. 297) ("he was in Armenia - an old man and sluggish as regards the administration of the kingdom" when appointed emperor to succeed Ioustinianos 1), Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 12 (drove out Ioustinianos 1 and exiled him to Pontus, seizing the throne for himself and reigning for three years), 32 (disfigured Ioustinianos 1). He became emperor on the expulsion of Ioustinianos 1 (in 695) and reigned for three years; his successor was Tiberios 2: Theoph. AM 6177 (ἐκβληθέντος δὲ Ἰουστινιανοῦ ἐκράτησε Λεόντιος ἔτη γ', καὶ μετὰ Λεόντιον Τιβέριος). He was emperor: Theoph. AM 6188 (Λεόντιος ἐβασίλευσε καὶ πάντοθεν εἰρηνικῶς διέμεινεν). In 698 he himself was overthrown by Tiberios Apsimar (Tiberios 2), his nose was cut and he was ordered to retire to the Delmatou monastery: Nic. Brev. de Boor 40, Mango 41, Theoph. AM 6190 (ἐν τῇ μονῇ τῆς Δελμάτου), Zon. XIV 23. 11, Chron. 1234, §151 (p. 297) (overthrown by Apsimar (Tiberios 2) but unharmed and allowed to live in peace), Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 13 (overthrown by Tiberios 2 and detained by him in custody for the duration of Tiberios 2's reign). In 705, after the return to power of Justinian II (Ioustinianos 1), Leontios 2 was publicly humiliated and then executed: Nic. Brev. de Boor 42, Mango 42, Theoph. AM 6198, Zon. XIV 25. 2-3, Chron. 1234, §152 (p. 298), Lib. Pont. 88. 4, Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 31. The eastern sources record some details about him. In the year 1006 Sel. (694/695) the Romans rebelled against Ioustinianos 1 and expelled him, then brought Leontios 2 from prison and made him emperor: Chron. 819, p. 13, 12-16 = p. 9. Leontios 2 was a patrikios; when Ioustinianos 1 was overthrown he was made emperor in his place; he reigned for three years and was then deposed and replaced by Apsimaros (= Tiberios 2): Chron. 846, p. 230, 1-3 = p. 175 (Chabot) = pp. 579-580 (Brooks). In the year 1018 Sel. (706/707) Leontios 2 became king of the Romans on the death of Ioustinianos 1: Pseudo-Dion., Chron., p. 155, 21-23 = p. 117. In the year 1022 Sel. (710/711) Leontios 2 died and was succeeded by Tiberios Apsimar (Tiberios 2): Pseudo-Dion., Chron., p. 156, 4-6 = p. 117. He became ruler of the Romans in the year 1007 Sel. (695/696), and was overthrown, but not killed, in the year 1010 Sel. (698/699) by Apsimar Tiberios (Tiberios 2): Bar Hebr., p. 104. He was later executed together with Tiberios 2 by Ioustinianos 1 after the latter regained the throne: Bar Hebr., p. 105. He overthrew Ioustinianos 1 but was later executed with Apsimar (Tiberios 2) when Ioustinianos 1 regained the throne: Const. Porph., DAI 22, 7ff.; 22, 29ff.

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