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Theophanes' inconsistent calendar start dates and indictions

Author Inconsistencies
Theophanes Theophanes used the Alexandrian version of the Anno Mundi calendar even though it was out of favor at the time and would be obsolete by the 9th century CE. He did so because his Chronicle was a continuation of George Syncellus Chronicle which itself used the Alexandrian version of the Anno Mundi calendar. Proudfoot (1974:374) noted that the problem of whether Theophanes regarded the year as commencing on March 25 according to the Alexandrian world-year or on September 1 according to the Byzantine indiction cycle has not been resolved with [] clarity.
Theophanes Grumel (1934:407), Proudfoot (1974:373-374), and others have pointed out that Theophanes A.M.a in the years A.M.a 6102-6206 and A.M.a 6218-6265 are frequently a year too low. The indictions, however, are thought by many more likely to be correct.

Grumel's (1934:398-402) synchronisms
Synchronism Explanation
MA Theophanes’s indictions begin in March - the start date for A.M.a
MB Theophanes’s indictions begin in September after the March starting date for A.M.a
Note: Outside of Egypt, Indictions began on 1 September
Grumel's (1934:398-402) synchronisms by time period
Synchronism Years A.M.a (approx.) Date Range CE Historical Markers
MA ? - 6102 ? - 5 Oct. 610 until the end of the reign of Phocas (ruled 23 Nov. 602 – 5 Oct. 610 CE)
MB 6102 - 6206 5 Oct. 610 - 3 June 713 starting with the reign of Heraclius (ruled 5 Oct. 610 – 11 Feb. 641 CE) and ending right before the start of the reign of Anastasios II (aka Artemios) (ruled from 4 June 713 – 4 June 715 CE)
MA 6206 - 6220 4 June 713 CE - 24 March 728 starting with the reign of Anastasios II (aka Artemios) (ruled from 4 June 713 – 4 June 715 CE) until A.M.a 6220
MB 6221 - 6266 1 Sept. 728 - 31 Aug. 774 A.M.a6221 - 6266
MA 6267 - ? 25 March 774 - ? A.M.a6267 - ?
Martin (1930:12-13) states the following:
The indiction runs from Sept. 1st, the Alexandrian A.M. from March 25th, but Theophanes probably dates the latter for calendar purposes from Sept. 1st2, to correspond with the Indiction.

... In two periods (607-714 and 726-774) the A.M. and the indictions do not correspond 3. It was formerly supposed that the Indictions were most likely to be correct, and therefore they must be made the foundation for a true chronology. But a suggestion was made by Bury (Later Roman Empire, II, p. 425). and worked out by Hubert (Byzant. Zeitschrift, VI, pp. 491 sqq.), that in 726 Leo III raised double taxes and put two indictions in one year, while in 774 or 775, Constantine remitted a year's taxation and spread one indiction over two years. This suggestion has been generally accepted. On the other hand, it is purely conjectural. Ginis (Das Promulgationsjahr d. Isuar. Ecloge. Byz. Zeitsch., XXIV, pp. 346 sqq.) would trace the error to Theophanes having confused the April of Indiction 10 (Sept. 1st, 726, to Aug. 31st, 727), with April of the 10th regnal year of Leo (March 25th, 725, to March 24th, 726). E.W. Brooks (Byz. Zeitsch., VIII, pp. 82 sqq.) explains the error by differences in the chronological systems of the sources used by Theophanes.

Notes from Proudfoot (1974)

Proudfoot (1974:374) noted that while Theophanes used the Alexandrian Anno Mundi system, it is unknown whether he started his years on 25 March as would be done for the Alexandrian version or 1 September as was done in the Byzantine method of Anno Mundi. Although the Alexandrian Anno Mundi system was being replaced by the Byzantine system when Theophanes wrote (and would be obsolete by the 9th century CE), Theophanes used the Alexandrian Anno Mundi system because his chronicle was a continuation of George Syncellus Chronicle which had used the the Alexandrian system.

Proudfoot (1974:405-409) summarized Brook's pioneering work on Theophanes' eastern source (only the first part is shown below)

Exposition of this source might profitably be preceeded by discussion of the pioneer studies of Brooks towards identification of the common source underlying much of the seventh and early eighth century narratives of Theophanes and Michael the Syrian, the development and the corroboration of this work in the light of more recently published primary sources and of other chronicle traditions, and its contribution to the emerging perspective of a stingle Byzantino-Syriac tradition for the historiography of the seventh century. A Monophysite Syriac chronicle extending to 746 written soon after that date by the otherwise unknown John son of Samuel and citing an unknown chronicle composed 724-31 (wherein much of the more detailed material was atrributable to a source written either within or on the frontier of the Caliphate before 717) (2) was transmitted to Theophanes through the intermediary of a Melchite monk of Palestine writing in Greek c. 780 whose work was brought to Constantinople in 813 after the dissolution of the Syrian monasteries and the dispersal of their personnel, and to Michael the Syrian through Denis of Tellmahre -writing c. 843-6, while the chronicle dated to 724-31 was one of the sources of the monk of Karthamin whose work was written c.785 and continued as the Chronicon ad 846 pertinens (3). The last notice Theo-phanes drew from the Melchite continuator of the common source was apparently (780) the persecution of Christians by al-Mandi (775-85) the first caliph of the Abbasid jihad ...