By George E. Georgas
A thematologically rare micrography from the Skilitzis Chronicle depicts a woman, victim of a rape attempt by a Varangian mercenary of the palace guard, killing him with his own weapons (left).
The inscription in red above reads as follows: “The woman that was raped next to the barbarian and she slay him. On the right, the Varangian’s comrades are seen giving her the rapist’s belongings as compensation. The inscription in red above: “The Varangians giving the raped woman all of the rapist’s belongings.”
Rape attempt by a Varangian in 1034 during Michael D of Paflagony’s reign. During that year another event worthy of mention happened. One of the Varangians that were scattered in the Thracians’ Theme for the winter, chanced upon a local woman in the wilderness and was trying to steal her purity. But because he didn’t manage it with words and was trying to do it with violence, she pulled his sword, pierced the barbarian’s heart and immediately killed him. When the news spread in the nearby area, after the Varangians gathered, first they awarded the woman with a wreath, surrendering to her all the rapist’s belongings and then they left the perpetrator unburied, as the law dictates for those who commit crimes.
From ‘The Chronology of John Skylitzis’ publication Militos, Greece