Zbornik radova Vizantoloskog instituta 2004 Issue 41, Pages: 165-182
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A quasi patriarch in the state of Epirus: The autocephalous archbishop of "Boulgaria" (Ohrid) Demetrios Chomatenos

Prinzing Günter

The paper sketches the life and work of the archbishop of the autocephalous Byzantine archbishopric of Boulgaria/CAmd, Demetrios Chomatenos (fungit 1216-1236). His main work, the corpus of records Ponemata diaphora (=PD), appeared in 2002 in a critical edition in Vol. 38 of the CFHB. The PD prove to be a first quality historical source, also for the history of Serbia. This present paper is thus based on numerous new findings from the analysis of the PD and other relevant sources. In particular, it deals with the quasi-patriarchal self-understanding and work of Chomatenos, who was an excellent canonist and nomotriboumenos (legal expert): The increased rivalry between Nicaea and Epirus in the years 1215-1230 enabled him to act like a patriarch in the area controlled by the rulers of Epirus. In so far as he reached beyond the boundaries of his archbishopric in this connection, as a rule he acted with the consent of further metropolitans and bishops in the state of Epirus who — unlike him — were formally subject to the patriarch. This also applies for the coronation of Emperor Theodores Doukas which he carried out in 1227.

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