Open main menu

THE BULGARIAN EMPIRE PORTAL

The Bulgarian Empire in its expansion in the 13th century

In the medieval history of Europe, Bulgaria's status as the Bulgarian Empire (Bulgarian: Българско царство, Balgarsko tsarstvo [ˈbəlɡɐrskʊ ˈt͡sarstvʊ]), wherein it acted as a key regional power (particularly rivaling Byzantium in Southeastern Europe) occurred in two distinct periods: between the seventh and eleventh centuries, and again between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries. The two "Bulgarian Empires" are not treated as separate entities, but rather as one state restored after a period of Byzantine rule over its territory. Bulgaria is one of the few historic states and nations whose economy and society were never based on slavery, and slavery never played an important role in Bulgarian statehood development and wealth.

Selected Article

Khan Krum celebrates his victory over Nicephorus.
The Battle of Pliska or Battle of Vărbitsa Pass (Bulgarian: битката при Върбишкия проход) was a series of battles between troops, gathered from all parts of the Byzantine Empire, led by the Emperor Nicephorus I Genik, and Bulgaria, governed by Khan Krum. The Byzantines plundered and burned the Bulgarian capital Pliska which gave time for the Bulgarians to block passes in the Balkan Mountains that served as exits out of Bulgaria. The final battle took place on July 26, 811, in some of the passes in the eastern part of the Balkans, most probably the Vărbitsa Pass. There, the Bulgarians used the tactics of ambush and surprise night attack to effectively trap and immobilize the Byzantine Army, thus annihilating almost the whole army, including the Emperor. After the battle, Krum encased the Nicephorus's skull in silver, and used it as a cup for wine-drinking. This is probably the best documented instance of the custom of skull cup.

The battle of Pliska is one of the worst defeats in Byzantine history. It deterred Byzantine rulers to sent their troops north of the Balkans for more than 150 years afterwards which increased the influence and spread of the Bulgarians to the west and south of the Balkan Peninsula, resulting in a great territorial enlargement of the First Bulgarian Empire.

Selected Biography

The Bulgarian Tsar Simeon: The Morning Star of Slavonic Literature
Simeon I (also Symeon) I the Great (Bulgarian: Симеон I Велики, transliterated Simeon I Veliki; IPA: /si.mɛ.ˈɔn ˈpɤr.vi vɛ.ˈli.ki/) ruled over Bulgaria from 893 to 927, during the First Bulgarian Empire. Simeon's successful campaigns against the Byzantines, Magyars and Serbs led Bulgaria to its greatest territorial expansion ever, making it the most powerful state in contemporary Eastern Europe. His reign was also a period of unmatched cultural prosperity and enlightenment later deemed the Golden Age of Bulgarian culture. Tsar Simeon I has remained among the most highly valued Bulgarian historical figures, as indicated by popular vote in the Velikite Bǎlgari (a spin-off of 100 Greatest Britons) television programme, which in February 2007 placed him fourth among the greatest Bulgarians ever. The last Bulgarian monarch, Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, was named after Simeon I.

Selected images

Did You Know?

Nessebar Festungsmauern.jpg
  • ... that Nessebar (pictured) was an important and well-protected Black Sea port and had over 40 churches?

Topics

Battles Rulers
Byzantine–Bulgarian wars
Bulgarian–Hungarian wars
Croatian–Bulgarian wars
Bulgarian–Rus' wars
Bulgarian–Latin wars
Bulgarian–Serbian wars
Bulgarian–Ottoman wars
Khans
Knyaze
Tsars (Emperors)
 
Capitals

Pliska

Preslav

Skopje

Ohrid

Tarnovo

Vidin

Related Portals

Wikimedia

The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:

Wikibooks
Books

Commons
Media

Wikinews 
News

Wikiquote 
Quotations

Wikisource 
Texts

Wikiversity
Learning resources

Wikivoyage 
Travel guides

Wiktionary 
Definitions

Wikidata 
Database