The theme Opsikion (Greek θέμα Ὀψικίου, subject Opsikiou ) or short Opsikion (Greek [ θέμα ] Ὀψίκιον, from Latin Obsequium ) was a Byzantine theme in northwestern Asia Minor ( now Turkey ). Originally formed from the imperial entourage Opsikion was the largest and most influential of the early issues, as it was to Konstantin Opel closest. After it played an important role in several revolts in the 8th century, it was about 750 split into three parts and lost its former importance. As a scaled- topic, it survived until the Fourth Crusade.


The opsikische issue was the first of the four original themes. It has its origins in the military präsentalischen parts of the Eastern Roman army. The term derives from the Latin Opsikion Obsequium ( " entourage " ) from, and thought in the early 7th century, the units that accompanied the emperor on his campaigns. In its early phase, the Opsikion could have been stationed in Constantinople Opel. In the 640ern but it was transferred due to the crushing defeats of the Byzantines against the Islamic Arabs to Asia Minor and settled in large military districts, the "themes" ( themes ) were called. So the opsikische topic was one in which the imperial Opsikion was settled. It included the whole north-western Asia Minor ( Mysia, Bithynia, parts of Galatia, Lydia and Paphlagonia ) from the Dardanelles to the Halys, with Ancyra as its capital. The exact date of establishment of the subject is unknown; the earliest mention indicates a foundation 626, the first confirmed source mentioned the subject 680 It is also possible that the subject originally included Thrace, that apparently in the late 7th and early 8th century was administered together with the Opsikion.

The specific origin of the theme of Opsikion was reflected in several aspects. The title of his commander was not Strategos (Greek: στρατηγός, "General" ) as in the other topics, but komes ( κόμης, " Count " ), or komes tou basilikou Opsikiou (Greek κόμης τοῦ βασιλικοῦ Ὀψικίου, " Count of the Imperial Opsikion "). The topic was not divided into turmai but in Domestikate that were formed by the elite regiments of the army as the Optimate and Bukellarier. The high reputation of the theme is also the victories ticker "God -guarded imperial Opsikion " (Greek θεοφύλακτον βασιλικόν ὀψίκιον; Latin: a Deo conservandum imperial Obsequium ) demonstrated.

Since the topic was close to Konstantin Opel and among all subjects occupied the most important position, there were frequent revolts by the Counts of Opsikion. Already 668 dared Count Mezezius after the death of Constans II in Sicily a revolt, but which failed. Under the Patrikios Barasbakourios Opsikion was the greatest power base of Justinian II (reigned 685-695 and 705-711 ). Justinian also moved many Southern Slavs, who had been captured in Thrace, there on to increase the clout of the topic. The majority of these Slavs deserted but in the first battle with the Arabs. In the year 713, the army rose up against opsikische Philippikos Bardanes (reigned 711-713 ), who had Justinian II was overthrown and murdered, and enthroned Anastasios II (reigned 713-715 ), only to those also in 715, again discontinued and Theodosius III. (reigned 715-717 ) to rise in his place. In the year 716 supported the opsikische army Leo III. (reigned 716-740 ) when Langerringen the imperial crown, but 718 the Patrikios Isoes stood unsuccessfully against him. In 741-742 the Kuropalates Artabasdos used the issue as a power base for his brief revolt against Emperor Constantine V (reigned 741-775 ). In the year 766, a further count was blinded as a punishment for a revolt against the Emperor. Not only the lust for power of the Counts of the topic of Opsikion was the reason for the numerous coup attempts: the Opsikier were stable Ikonodule and were the iconoclastic policy of the Syrian dynasty hostile. The result was that Emperor Constantine V the power of opsikischen topic circumcised by he divided it into two smaller units, the theme of Bukellarier and Optimates. At the same time the Emperor recruited a new, strictly iconoclastic assessed elite unit that tagmata.

The Opsikion was so degraded by an elite guard unit to a regular cavalry theme: Opsikier were divided into turmai, and his komes fell back to sixth place of the thematic commander and strategos was renamed even in the "ordinary" title. In the 9th century he moved into 30 pounds of gold as pay and commanded 6,000 soldiers ( formerly of 18,000 soldiers of the old Opsikion ). The capital of the topic was moved to Nicaea.

In the revolt of Thomas ' of the Slavs in the early 820ern the Opsikion remained the Emperor Michael II (reigned 820-829 ) faithful. In the year 866, the opsikische stratēgós Georgios Peganes rose along with the theme of Thrakesier against Basil I (reigned 867-886 ), then the co-emperor Michael III. (reigned 842-867 ), and 930 revolted against Basil Chalkocheir Romanus I (reigned 920-944 ). Both revolts were quickly stopped. The issue existed in the entire Comnenian period of the Byzantine Empire. Sometime in the 12th century, the theme of the Aegean was merged with the opsikischen. The opsikische topic survived well into the time of the Empire of Nicaea: Georgios Akropolites reported that it fell in 1234 to the " Italians " ( Latin ).