Anna Comnena

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Anna Comnena (Ἄννα Κομνηνή)

(c. 1148)

Wrote a biographical text about her father Byzantine Emperor Alexius I

The Alexiad


Book IX: VI

The Emperor [Alexius], however, acting in an original manner, would send for them at suitable times and never tell what he had heard, but would talk to them cleverly and give them timely counsel. And the more he grew to know of the conspiracy, the more generously he behaved towards them, hoping thus to win them over. But an Ethiopian never turned white. So Nicephorus remained the same and imparted the contagion to all he approached, binding some to him by oaths and others by promises.

Selected editions

Annae Comnenae, Alexias ex recensione, ed. A. Reifferscheidii (2 volumes. Lipsiae: 1884)

The Alexiad of Anna Comnena, trans. E. R. A. Sewter (Harmondsworth: 1969).