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Procopius of Caesarea
Born c. AD 500
Caesarea, Palaestina Prima (Eastern Roman Empire)
Died c. AD 570
Occupation Barrister and legal adviser
Subject Secular history
Notable works
  • History of the Wars
  • Buildings
  • Secret History

Procopius of Caesarea (Greek: Προκόπιος ο Καισαρεύς, c. 500 – c. 565) was a prominent Eastern Roman scholar. He took part in the wars of the Emperor Justinian I, and was the major historian of the 6th century AD, writing the Wars of Justinian, the Buildings of Justinian and the celebrated Secret History. He is commonly held to be the last major historian of the ancient world.


The writings of Procopius are the primary source of information for the rule of the Roman emperor Justinian. Procopius was the author of a history in eight books of the wars fought by Justinian I, a panegyric on Justinian's public works throughout the empire, and a book known as the Secret History (Greek: Anekdota) that claims to report the scandals that Procopius could not include in his published history.

A number of historical novels based on Procopius' works (along with other sources) have been written, of which the best, Count Belisarius, was written by poet and novelist Robert Graves in 1938.

  • Procopii Caesariensis opera omnia. Edited by J. Haury; revised by G. Wirth. 3 vols. Leipzig: Teubner, 1976-64. Greek text.
  • Procopius. Edited by H. B. Dewing. 7 vols. Loeb Classical Library. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press and London, Hutchinson, 1914-40. Greek text and English translation.
  • Procopius, The Secret History, translated by G.A. Williamson. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1966. A readable and accessible English translation of the Anecdota.

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