The Lives of Hannibal and Theodore

Hannibal was immortalized by his enemies, and Theodore Laskaris was mostly forgotten by his own people.

Last week, I happened to read two biographies in close succession: Eve MacDonald’s fine study of the life of Hannibal and Dimiter Angelov’s The Byzantine Hellene, which recounts the life and works of the exile Byzantine emperor of Nicaea Theodore II Laskaris. The subjects are separated by about fourteen centuries, and they were very different kinds of l…

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