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Saber and Scroll

Abstract

The Eastern Roman, or Byzantine, Empire endured almost a thousand years longer than its Western Roman counterpart. Central to the longevity of the Byzantine Empire was its state intelligence gathering capabilities; but what were those capabilities and how were they organized? Answering these questions will require discussion of the challenges conducting Byzantine studies using secondary sources, literature review of English-language intelligence sources and qualitative analysis to summarize the structure and function of the Byzantine state intelligence apparatus. The Empire endured as long as it did due to a decentralized intelligence apparatus that could nevertheless be undermined by corruption and treason.

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