Compose a 2500 words assignment on marriage and its implications in the byzantine era. Needs to be plagiarism free! Sometimes, they were even able to exercise power themselves thanks to their husband’s authority. It may be argued that this is an absurd notion, given that the institution of marriage largely subscribed to the repressive atmosphere of the time and was designed to subjugate women. However, a study of intrepid women of the Byzantine era reveals that by using marriage as a tool, they were able to siphon off the lion’s share of power enjoyed by men. This siphoning off power from the men by women through the institution of marriage, while not necessarily evident in the documentary record, can nevertheless be traced through the art produced during this period. The idea that women held the power all their own is evident not only in the pictorial records of the church, such as in depictions of the Virgin Mary and female saints but also in the female patronage of religious artwork and in the artwork of the state.
In regards to the Byzantine Empire, Nicol says, “Its people and their rules were conservative by instinct.”2 The length of the period, spanning from roughly the fourth through the fifteenth centuries, provides ample evidence to be studied. Much of this study has focused upon the religious art that was produced during this time. According to the Christian worldview, the female gender was single-handedly responsible for the fall of man and had been given into man’s keeping by God himself. The degree to which a woman epitomized the ideals of genteel womanhood was the degree to which she brought honor and respectability to the man with whom she is most associated. Thus, in keeping with the spirit of the times, women were usually treated like commodities, jealously guarded, and secreted away regardless of their status. Most women had their spirit destroyed by a life of unceasing servitude to their male masters, religious rigidity, and a lack of opportunity to develop their talents. The church played a powerful role in .subjugating women, often containing legal stipulations which limited the actions of women as a means of preventing defilement and impurity.