Daniel Reynolds

Colleges, School and Institutes

Biography

Daniel received his Bachelor’s degree in Ancient History and Archaeology from the University of Leicester. Following a year at the Universitat de València, Spain and working in field archaeology and social services, he moved to the Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies to pursue an MA in Byzantine Studies. His postgraduate experience at the Centre further cemented his interest in the late antique and early medieval Levant, and he went on to complete an Arts and Humanities Research Council funded PhD which was submitted in September 2013 and successfully defended in March 2014.

Following this, Daniel became a Postgraduate Teaching Fellow in the School of History and Cultures and taught a number of undergraduate courses on Archaeology, Late Antique and Medieval History and the material culture of the East Mediterranean. In the year 2013/14, he was also the co-curator of the Faith and Fortune exhibition on display at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts and have subsequently mentored postgraduate students at the University of Birmingham and other Midlands3Cities institutions in the curation of two exhibitions Excavating Empire: The Forgotten Archive of Mount Sinai and Excavating Empire: David Talbot Rice and the Rediscovery of Byzantium.

Between September 2014 and 2017 he was employed as a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in the Centre on my project ‘Forging the Christian Holy Land 330-1099’ the subject of his first monograph. Most recently he has lead on the re-dating of the Longobard Church of Sant’Ambrogio at Montecorvino Rovella, and the discovery and this has justified the site’s inclusion within two EU heritage funding initiatives.

Research interests

Daniel’s research focuses on the social and economic history of the Byzantium in the period c.300-c.1100, with particular interest in Byzantine and early Islamic Syria, Israel/Palestine and Jordan, and southern Italy. His main interest is in the history and archaeology of the Christian communities of these regions in the early Middle Ages, which he uses to discuss broader patterns of diplomatic, economic and human contact across the early medieval Mediterranean and central Europe. He uses a multidisciplinary approach and harnesses his expertise in archaeology and material culture, combined with numismatics, epigraphy and a familiarity with the traditions of Greek and Arabic historical texts. In more recent years he has developed further interests and publications in iconoclasm in the Mediterranean c.700-c.900 as well as questions of identity in Byzantine and post-Byzantine provincial contexts (c.500-1100), and peasant communities in the Mediterranean, where I have collaborated with colleagues based in Vienna, Princeton, Oxford and Tate Britain.

Daniel is co-director of the project “At the Crossroads of Empires:  the Longobard Church of Sant’Ambrogio at Montecorvino Rovella (Salerno)”.  This is a British Academy funded project, collaborating with Dr. Francesca Dell'Acqua, (Università di Salerno/ Birmingham) and Prof. Chiara Lambert (Università di Salerno), and a number of higher education intuitions across the UK, Italy and the Czech Republic. The project involves a full archaeological and historical analysis of the ninth-century Longobard Church of Sant’Ambrogio, Montecorvino Rovella, and has resulted in a re-dating of the site and its burials to the mid-ninth century. It also explores the significance of Sant’Ambrogio and the nearby site of San Michele Olevano sul Tusciano, to ninth-century pilgrimage routes and sacred landscapes. This discovery and reconsideration of its dating underpinned and justified the inclusion of the church within two EU heritage initiative, and has also influenced local public policy. The project will also work closely with UNESCO and the European Commission with the aim of incorporating Sant’Ambrogio within its World Heritage List, ‘Italia Langobardorum’. https://crossroadsofempires.com/

Willingness to take PhD students

Yes

PhD projects

Daniel has supervised and co-supervised a number of MA dissertations and doctoral theses. Past topics have included relics and ‘pilgrim souvenirs’ in the early medieval west, social care in the early Byzantine empire, the Justinianic plague and Middle Byzantine stucco. Daniel is currently supervising eight PhD theses on topics such as:

Armenian textile production
Burial practices in the Byzantine East
Byzantine stucco
Late Antique Graffiti
Pilgrimage to Jerusalem
Rural life in Byzantine North Africa
The Byzantine-Anatolian frontier c.600-c.1050
Daniel is interested in supervising a range of topics connected with the themes below.

Byzantine material and visual culture
Non-elite communities
Identity
Iconoclasm
The Byzantine and early Islamic Levant
Pilgrimage and monasticism