Liutprand was a prominent diplomat of his time. However, his views were vulnerable to the impact of biases and stereotypes based on the negative attitude to Greeks and Romans, whereas the Byzantine Empire was a personification of Roman and Hellenistic civilization, which was quite different from western one. Hence, view of Liutprand on Constantinople, its politics, court, political system and philosophy were biased and prejudiced.
In fact, Liutprand was a biased observer. Nevertheless, his biased attitude to the Byzantine Empire was influenced by the growing power of Constantinople, whereas the Byzantine Empire and the Emperor were growing in power that contributed to their superior attitude to western countries. Nevertheless, the Byzantine Emperor insisted on referring to Liutprand’s master Otto I as “Rex” to stress his respect to Otto I as the monarch. In such a way, the Byzantine Emperor stressed the importance of the monarch as the superior to his subordinates, whereas western civilization developed less supremacist view on the monarch in relation to his subordinates. Liutprand found the reference to Otto I as “Rex” insulting because it remind him the time of Roman Emperors, who were considered deceitful and wily and, therefore, westerners could not respect them. In such a way, entitling Otto I as “Rex” was insulting for Liutprand.
At the same time, the difference in views of westerners and Byzantines on politics and culture were quite different. Byzantine respected the Roman and Hellenistic past, whereas West neglected them.
Scott, Brian. Liudprand of Cremona, Relatio de Legatione Constantinopolitana. Bristol Classical Press, 1993.
Wright, F. A. The Works of Liudprand of Cremona. New York: Penguin, 2009.