Of Mice and Men. Zur Darstellung von Tieren in den „Geoponika“
Pages 539 - 573
This article explores the role of animals in the Byzantine treatise Geoponika, a compilation on agriculture from the tenth century A. D. After an overview of the work as a technical text as well as an outline of its structure and content, the analysis proceeds in two steps: First, it focuses on the information provided by the first twelve books of the “Geoponika”, dealing with topics such as the weather, workforce, the location of the country estate, the tasks of the farmer throughout the year, viniculture, the cultivation of olives and horticulture. Second, it offers a thorough examination of Books 13–20 which are specifically dedicated to animals. Similarities and differences between the “Geoponika” and previous agricultural writing (in particular Columella’s “De re rustica” as the most systematic and most comprehensive extant treatise) are carefully investigated.