CHALCONDYLES (or CHALCOCONDYLAS), LAONICUS, the only Athenian Byzantine writer. He wrote a history, in ten books, of the period from 1298-1463, describing the fall of the Greek empire and the rise of the Ottoman Turks, down to the conquest of the Venetians and Mathias, king of Hungary, by Mohammed II. The capture of Constantinople he rightly regarded as an event of far-reaching importance. The work incidentally gives an interesting sketch of the civilization of England, France and Germany, whose assistance the Greeks sought against the Turks. Chalcondyles' chronology is defective, and his use of the old Greek place-names causes confusion.
Editio princeps, ed. J. B. Baumbach (i615) ; in Bonn Corpus Scrip torum Hist. Byz. ed. I. Bekker (5843) ; Migne, Patrologia Graeca, clix. There is a French translation by Blaise de Vigenere (1577, later ed. by Artus Thomas with valuable illustrations on Turkish matters) ; see also F. Gregorovius, Geschichte der Stadt Athen im Mittelalter, ii. (188q) ; Gibbon, Decline and Fall, ch. 66; C. Krumbacher, Geschichte der byzantinischen Literatur (1897). There is a bio graphical sketch of Laonicus and his brother in Greek by Antonius Calosynas, a physician of Toledo, who lived in the latter part of the i 6th century (see C. Hopf, Chroniques greco-romanes, 1873).
His brother, DEMETRTUS CHALCONDYLES (1424-1511) , was born in Athens. In 1447 he went to Italy, where Cardinal Bessarion became his patron. He became famous as a teacher of Greek and the Platonic philosophy; in 1463 he was made professor at Padua, and in 1479 was summoned by Lorenzo de' Medici to Florence. In 1492 he removed to Milan, where he died in 1511. He was associated with Marsilius Ficinus, Angelus Politianus and Theod orus Gaza, in the revival of letters in the western world. One of his pupils at Florence was the famous John Reuchlin. Demetrius Chalcondyles published the editio princeps of Homer (1488), Isocrates (1493) and Suidas , and a Greek grammar (Erotemata) in the form of question and answer.