Leo Diaconus

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Leo Diaconus


Born before 950, in Kaloe, Asia Minor; died in about 1000. Byzantine author. A Byzantine courtier.

Leo Diaconus took part in Emperor Basil II’s campaign against the Bulgarians in 986. His History in Ten Books, devoted to the events of 959–976 and written about 990, is based in part on personal observations and on the stories of eyewitnesses. Diaconus contrasted the “glorious reign” of emperors Nicephorus II and John Tzimisces to the unsuccessful beginning of the reign of Basil II. This work, which contains a description of the campaigns of Prince Sviatoslav in the Balkans, is an important source for the history of ancient Rus’.


Caloensis historiae libri X. Bonn, 1828.
In Russian translation:
Istoriia 10 knig. St. Petersburg, 1820.


Kazhdan, A. P. “Iz istorii vizantiiskoi khronografii X v.” In Vizantiiskii vremennik, vol. 20. Moscow, 1961.
Siuziumov, M. “Mirovozzrenie L’va Diakona.” Uch. zap. Ural’skogo gos. un-ta. 1971, no. 112.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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