Theodosios 2

Prosopography of the Byzantine Empire
FloruitE VIII
Dates715 (taq) / 716 (tpq)
Variant NamesT'wdsyws;
Theodosius III
Constantinople (officeplace);
Adramyttion (Asia) (workplace);
Constantinople (residence);
Adramyttion (Asia) (residence);
Adramyttion (Asia);
Adramyttion (Asia) (birthplace)
TitlesAugustus (office);
Emperor (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 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);
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);
Vita Stephani Iunioris, by Stephanus Diaconus (BHG 1666), ed. M.-F. Auzépy, La Vie d'Etienne le Jeune par Étienne le diacre. Introduction, édition et traduction (Aldershot, 1997); PG 100. 1069-1186 (hagiography);
Zonaras = Ioannis Zonarae Epitome Historiarum, libri XIII-XVIII, ed. Th. Büttner-Wobst, (Bonn, 1897) (history)

Theodosios 2 was a native of Adramyttion: Theoph. AM 6207 (referred to as ἄνδρα ἐντόπιον), AM 6305 (ἐπὶ Θεοδοσίου τοῦ Ἀδραμυτίνου), Zon. XV 17. 14. For the case that he was in fact the son of the former emperor Tiberios (Tiberios 2), see G. V. Sumner, "Philippicus, Anastasius II and Theodosius III", GRBS 17 (1976), pp. 291ff. If this is so, he is identical with the bishop of Ephesus, Theodosios 3.

He was a collector of taxes at Adramyttion and a private citizen, holding no public office (τῶν δημοσίων φόρων πράκτορα, ἀπράγμονά τινα καὶ ἰδιώτην τυγχάνοντα): Nic. Brev. de Boor 51, Mango 50:20-21; ἐκλήπτορα τῶν δημοσίων φόρων ὑπάρχοντα, ἀπράγμονά τε καὶ ἰδιώτην: Theoph.; πράκτορα τῶν δημοσίων τελῶν, ἰδιώτην ἄνδρα: Zon.), when in 715 he was unexpectedly proclaimed emperor at Adramyttion by the troops of the Opsikion as they returned from Rhodes after rebelling against the emperor Anastasios (Anastasios 6); he fled for refuge into the hills but was caught by the troops and forced to accompany them as emperor; civil war lasted for six months before the troops of Theodosios 2 took Constantinople and Anastasios 6 was finally overthrown; Anastasios 6 abdicated and Theodosios 2 spared his life, sending him to exile in Thessalonike: Nic. Brev. de Boor 51, Mango 51, Theoph. AM 6207, cf. AM 6209 (p. 395) (overthrew Artemios, i.e. Anastasios 6), Zon. XIV 27. 9-14, Chron. 1234, ¤156 (p. 300), Lib. Pont. 91. 5 (he was orthodox and was chosen as emperor by the rebellious fleet and proclaimed against his will), Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 36 (he was orthodox and became emperor against his will, defeating Anastasios near Nikaia).

One of his first acts on entering Constantinople was to replace the picture representing the six Councils of the Church removed by Philippikos 1: Lib. Pont. 91. 5, Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 36. He had a son (Anonymus 13) who was captured by the strategos of the Anatolikoi Leo 3 (the future emperor, Leo III) in 716 (Leo 3 had never recognised Theodosios 2): Theoph. AM 6208, Zon. XIV 28. 3, Chron. 1234, ¤157 (p. 302). Unable to cope with the military situation created by increasing Arab incursions and the disaffection of Leo 3 and with the collapse of civil affairs, he agreed to abdicate in favour of Leo 3 and retire to private life: Nic. Brev. de Boor 52, Mango 52, Theoph. AM 6208, AM 6209, Vita Steph. Iun. 98, 16-19 (1084B), Zon. XIV 28. 1-4, cf. Chron. 1234, ¤¤157-158 (pp. 302-303). Theodosios 2 and his son Anonymus 13 became clerics and lived out the remainder of their days in peace: Theoph. AM 6208, Zon. XIV 28. 4.

Said by Paul the Deacon to have died after ruling for one year and been succeeded by Leo 3: Paul. Diac., Hist. Lang. VI 41. A treaty between him and the Bulgar ruler Kormesios 1 is recorded in Theoph. AM 6305 (the treaty was in fact between him and the Bulgar ruler Tervel 1), and Zon. XV 17. 14. Described as a worthy man living a good life but unskilled in affairs and unable to cope with the role of emperor: Zon. XIV 28. 1. For an imperial seal of his, see Zacos and Veglery 32.

Theodosios 2 became emperor when Anastasios 6 was deposed; he reigned for two years and was then himself deposed and succeeded by Leo 3: Chron. 846, p. 231, 11-13 = p. 175 (Chabot) = p. 580 (Brooks). Theodosios Konstantinos (T'dwsys qwstyntyns) was emperor for one year in succession to Anastasios 6; he was on the throne when Maslama 1 began his invasion: Pseudo-Dion., Chron., p. 156, 10-17 = p. 117. The event is given in the year 1024 Sel. (712/713). In the year 1028 Sel. (716/717) when Maslama 1 invaded the lands of the Romans and it was alleged that Leo 3 had made a pact with him to deliver Constantinople, Theodosios 2 was afraid and abdicated the throne, accepting the tonsure, even though Leo 3 himself urged him to stand firm: Pseudo-Dion., Chron., pp. 156, 26-157, 18 = p. 117 = p. 62 (Palmer).

He was proclaimed emperor by the rebellious army of Anastasios 6 and reigned for one year; he heard that Leo 3 was involved in treachery with the Arabs and he imprisoned Leo 3's followers in Amorion: Bar Hebr., p. 107. When Leo 3 was proclaimed emperor at Constantinople, Theodosios 2 left after receiving the tonsure and becoming a cleric: Bar Hebr., p. 108.

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