Simon Brelaud

Job title: 
Avimalek Betyoussef Visiting Assistant Professor of Assyrian Studies; CMES Senior Research Scholars
Middle Eastern Languages & Cultures

Simon Brelaud holds a doctorate on Ancient Christianity in the Sasanian Empire (3rd—7th century) from the Sorbonne University in Paris, where he taught the history of ancient Rome. He was a Research Fellow in the Center for Advanced Studies “Migration & Mobility in Late Antiquity and the High Middle Ages” at the University of Tübingen. He is participating in several ongoing archaeological and epigraphic projects in the Middle East, including in Iraqi Kurdistan, Jordan and Turkey.

Brelaud’s research focuses on the history of Christians in Mesopotamia and its borders in Late Antiquity, particularly analysing ancient literary testimonies and archaeological remains in tandem. This interdisciplinary research follows a diachronic approach for understanding the continuities and changes, from the Sasanian (3rd–7th C.) to the Post-Sasanian periods (7th–13th C.). It encompasses two main research axes: firstly, tracing the best possible portrait of the Persian Christians from a sociological point of view; and secondly, studying the transmission of the Sasanian Christians’ collective memories over a long period of time, the different environments in which they were produced, and the processes of identity construction at work among the inhabitants of the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. A common thread is the exploration of the East Syrian hagiography and the places of worship and memories of the saints over time and space.