Jump to: navigation, search

Tzykanisterion

The tzykanisterion () was a stadium for playing the tzykanion (τζυκάνιον, from Persian tshu-qan), a kind of polo adopted by the Byzantines from Sassanid Persia.[1]

According to John Kinnamos, the tzykanion was played by two teams on horseback, equipped with long sticks topped by nets, with which they tried to push an apple-sized leather ball into the opposite team's goal (Kinnamos, 263.17–264.11).[2] The sport was very popular among the Byzantine nobility: Emperor Basil I (r. 867–886) excelled at it, while John I of Trebizond (r. 1235–1238) died from a fatal injury during a game.[2] The Great Palace of Constantinople featured a tzykanisterion, first built by Emperor Theodosius II (r. 408–450) on the southeastern part of the palace precinct. It was demolished by Basil I in order to erect the Nea Ekklesia church in its place, and rebuilt in larger size further east, connected to the Nea with two galleries.[3] Aside from Constantinople and Trebizond, other Byzantine cities also featured tzykanisteria, most notably Sparta, Ephesus and Athens, an indication of a thriving urban aristocracy.[4]

References

  1. Janin (1964), pp. 118–119
  2. 2.0 2.1 Kazhdan (1991), p. 1939
  3. Kazhdan (1991), p. 2137
  4. Laiou (2002), p. 643


Sources

  • Janin, Raymond (1964) (in French), Constantinople Byzantine. Développement urbaine et répertoire topographique, Parisnone 



Share

Premier Equine Classifieds

Subscribe

Subscribe to our newsletter and keep abreast of the latest news, articles and information delivered directly to your inbox.

Did You Know?

Modern horse breeds developed in response to a need for "form to function", the necessity to develop certain physical characteristics in order to perform a certain type of work... More...


The Gypsy Cob was originally bred to be a wagon horse and pulled wagons or caravans known as Vardos; a type of covered wagon that people lived in... More...


Archaeological evidence indicates that the Arabian horse bloodline dates back 4,500 years. Throughout history, Arabian horses spread around the world by both war and trade.... More...


That the term "Sporthorse" is a term used to describe a type of horse rather than any particular breed... More...