Niketas Choniates

This is part 1 of 3. Part 2 is here. Part 3 is here.

Εἶχε τοίνυν τοῦτον ἡ τοῦ Ἀνεμᾶ λεγομένη φρουρὰ δυσὶ παχείαις ἁλύσεσι τὸν ὑψιτενῆ βαρούμενον τράχηλον, ὑφ’ ὧν οἱ ἐν δεσμωτηρίοις σιτούμενοι λέοντες μετὰ σιδηρέων κλοιῶν συνέχονται, καὶ πέδαις τοὺς πόδας κακούμενον. ἐμφανισθεὶς δὲ οὕτως ἔχων καὶ παραστὰς Ἰσαακίῳ τῷ βασιλεῖ ὕβρεσι βάλλεται, κατὰ κόρρης ῥαπίζεται, τοὺς γλουτοὺς ἐπικρούεται, τὴν γένυν τίλλεται, τοὺς ὀδόντας ἐκριζοῦται, τὴν κεφαλὴν ψιλοῦται τριχῶν, εἰς κοινὸν ἐκδίδοται παίγνιον πᾶσι τοῖς συνελθοῦσιν, ἐμπαροινεῖται καὶ ὑπὸ γυναικῶν καὶ τύπτεται πυγμαῖς κατὰ στόματος, καὶ τούτων ὁπόσαι μάλιστα ἢ θανάτῳ ὑπ’ Ἀνδρονίκου ἀπεβάλοντο τοὺς συνεύνους ἢ τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ἀπεσβεσμένους ἀπέλαβον. ἔπειτα τὴν δεξιὰν χεῖρα πελέκει ἀποκοπεὶς παραρριπτεῖται αὖθις τῇ αὐτῇ φυλακῇ, ἄσιτος, ἄποτος, ὑπ’ οὐδενὸς μεταλαγχάνων οἱασοῦν κομιδῆς.
(Niketas Choniates, Hist. 2, p. 349 Van Dieten)

He* was confined in the so-called prison of Anemas with two heavy chains weighing down his proud neck, the iron collars used to fetter caged lions, and his feet were painfully shackled. Bound in this fashion he was paraded before Emperor Isaakios. He was slapped in the face, kicked on the buttocks, his beard was torn out, his teeth pulled out, his head shorn of hair; he was made the common sport of all those who gathered; he was even battered by women who struck him in the mouth with their fists, especially by all those whose husbands were put to death or blinded by Andronikos. Afterwards, his right hand cut off by an ax, he was cast again into the same prison without food and drink, tended by no one.

* Andronikos Komnenos.

(tr. Harry J. Magoulias)

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