Iconoclasm, Greek for "image-breaking", is the deliberate destruction within a culture of the culture's own religious icons and other symbols or monuments, usually for religious or political motives. There were two periods inconoclasm in the Byzantine Empire's history. The first came under the reign of Leo III the Isaurian in 730. It was continued under his son, Constantine V, who reigned from 741-775. It wasn't until 780 that the first period ended. The second period lasted from 814-842.

Iconoclasm in Agent of Byzantium[]

Iconoclasm was problematic during several periods of the Roman Empire, until was finally ended once and for all at an ecumenical council in 1317, following a riot incited by agents and priests influenced by the Persian Empire.[1] Basil Argyros helped craft the decisive argument in favor of icons.[2]

Iconoclasm in "Farmers' Law"[]

The iconoclasm of Constantine V led the citizens of Abrostola to handle the investigation of the murder of Theodore themselves rather than contact the strategos of the Anatolic theme. Abrostola was proud of its icons, and did not want them destroyed, which certainly would have happened had a government official discovered them.[3]


  1. Agent of Byzantium, 2018 edition, pgs. 194-196, 204-206.
  2. Ibid.,216-217.
  3. See, e.g., Atlantis and Other Places, pgs. 217-221, HC.