Mythical Past-Christian Present: perception and fostering of Spiritual ties between two Byzantine cities. The case of Thessalonike and Larissa (9th-14th c.)The cult of patron saints was not only relevant to the religious affiliation of the Byzantines but also influenced the individual political and cultural identity of each city, occasionally leading to a city claiming priority in time and supremacy over competing Byzantine cities. This does not seem to be the case of St. Demetrios and St. Achillios, patron saints of Thessalonike and Larissa respectively: saints, pilgrims, high ranking officials and scholars created a network of communication between the two Byzantine cities. After the sack of Thessalonike (the second most important city of the empire) by the Arabs in 904, the scholars of Larissa went on to question, through their hagiographical texts, The dominant position of Thessaloniki as a religious center in mainland Greece. On the other hand the literati in Thessaloniki, (who originated from Constantinople) and especially Eustathios, praised the administrative and military center of Thessaly not on its chistian symbol, Achillios, but rather because of the city's mythical past.