Maksim Grek Between Two Worlds

Maksim Grek Between Two Worlds


Maksim Grek (d. 1556) is one of the more perplexing figures of the early modern Greek diaspora. Trained by Ianos Laskaris, he studied in Florence and Venice before taking orders on Athos. Later he was summoned to Moscow to help with translating the Psalter into Slavonic. In this presentation I discuss Maksim’s writings in Slavonic alongside his poetic output in Greek, asking what the two prongs of his corpus reveal about his negotiation of Hellenic identity. My focus will be on a collection of letters discussing questions pertaining to visual culture as well as poems on liturgical objects for major Greek religious figures.


Justin Willson is Curator at the Icon Museum & Study Center in Clinton, MA. His research focuses on the evolution of artistic concepts in later Byzantium and the early modern Slavic world. Justin received his PhD in Art & Archaeology at Princeton University in 2021 and afterwards was the Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Art History Leadership at the Cleveland Museum of Art / Case Western Reserve University. He is editing volume 4 of the series “Sources in Byzantine Art History,” entitled The Visual Culture of Late Byzantium and the Early Modern Orthodox World (c.1350-c.1569) (Cambridge University Press, Forthcoming).

Date: Feb. 13, 2024

Time: 9 a.m. Pacific Time

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Meeting ID: 842 7756 4559 | Passcode: 527962