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Guilhem Dorandeu-Bureu

"Enhancing Imperial Authority in a Multicultural Context: the Acta of the Byzantine Catepans of Italy (999-1054)"

Guilhem Dorandeu-Bureu

Junior Fellow, Byzantine Studies

The South Italian archives offer the opportunity, rare in the field of Byzantine studies, to study the seals of the imperial administration together with the written documents they authenticate. Guilhem’s research explores this documentation to shed light on the discourses of legitimization of Byzantine power developed by imperial catepans in the fragmented Italian context, from 999 to 1054. The re-establishment of Byzantine administrations in Latin and Greek-speaking territories actually led to the writing of singular sealed charters, frequently bilingual, where the imperial power is especially valued from local formulas. Guilhem suggests that the defense of imperial interests in the Mezzogiorno required the design of singular diplomatic models, which include specificities of form and content with respect to those originating from the heart of Byzantium.

Guilhem is a PhD candidate in medieval history at Panthéon-Sorbonne University. He holds an MA in history from the same university and an MA in history of art from the École du Louvre. Guilhem taught at both of these institutions as an associate lecturer. He then was a junior fellow at the Maison Française d’Oxford. He is a member of the Société française d’héraldique et de sigillographie, and received the young researcher prize of the Fondation des Treilles.