Beauty and the Male Body in Byzantium looks into a subject previously ignored in discussions of the Byzantine world: it explores physical beauty as an attribute of the human and, in particular, of the male body through the evidence of imagery and writing from the eleventh to the fourteenth centuries. A close look into the workings of beauty in Byzantium reveals it to be attributed equally to the bodies of heroes and villains, saints and sinners, emperors and executioners, angels and eunuchs, manly soldiers and effeminate youths. Praised, admired, but also feared and envied, beauty's power appears to be matched only by the reverence bestowed upon it by Byzantine authors and artists alike. This study of Byzantine perceptions and representations of beauty tilts the balance in our understanding of Byzantium between spirituality and physicality, soul and body. It not only restores beauty to its proper place, but also refines our perception of the Byzantine world.