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Khnn. Omurtag, impatient of a delay which cncouraged the rebellious spirit of his Slavonic dependencies, indited another letter, which he dispatched by the same officer who had been the bearer of his first missive (A.D. 826). He requested the Emperos to consent to an immediate regulation of the frontier ; and if this proposal were not acceptable, he asked that, without any formal treaty, cach power should keep within his own borders. The terms of this incssage show that the principal object of Omurtag was in agreement which should restrain the Irunks from intervening in his relations to his Slavonic Mubjecta. Lawis found it poroloxt for it now postprono,
. 1110nt. A report renched him that the Khun land been plnin or dethroned ly one of his nobles, and he sent an oinissury to the Eastern Murk to discover if the news were truc. As no certain information could be gained," he dismissed the envoy without a lutter.
The subliine Khan would wait no longer on the Emperor's pleasure. l'olicy as well as resentment urged him to take the offensive, for, if he displayed a timid respect towards the Franks, his prestige among the Slavs beyond the Danube wils endangered. The power of Bulgaria was asserted by an invasion of Pannonia (A.1, 827). A fleet of boats sailed from the Danube up the Drave, carrying a host of Bulgarians who devastated with fire and sword the Slavs and Avars of Eastern l'annonia. The chiefs of the Slavonic tribes were expelled and Bulgarian governors were set over them. Throughout the ninth century the Bulgarians were neighbours of the Franks in these regions, and seem to have held both Sirmium and Singidunum.'
may be sure that Omurtay did not fail to lay a heavy hand on the disloyal Slavs of Dacia.
The operations of Omurtag iin this quarter of his empire are slightly illustrated by an incidental memorial, in a stone recording the death of Onegavon. This officer, who was one of the king's “men” and held the post of tarkan, was on his | 1b. 168.
parently in summer. ? This was carly in the year. As Cp. Diimmler, Südöstl. Murken, late as June nothing certain could be 28-29, and Sleweni in Dalm. 46 899. ; ascrtaine (ib. 170). This illustrates Schafarik, ii. 176. For Singidunui the lack of communications between (Belgrade) cp. l'ope John VIII. Leller Bulgaria and the West.
to Boris, Mansi, xvii. 64 ; Vita Clemci:: 16. 173. The expedition was ap. tis, ed. Miklosich, c. 16, p. 22.
way to the Bulgarian cimp and was drowned in crossing the river Theiss."
A similar memorial, in honour of Okorses, who in proceeding to a scene of war was drowned in the Dnieper, shows that the arms of Omurtag were also active in the East. '
The situation in the l'ontic regions, where the dominion of the Bulgarians confronted the crnpire of the Khazars, is at this time veiled in obscurity. The tents of the Magyars extended over the region between the Don and the Dirieper. The country to the west was exposed to their raids, and not many years later we xhall find their lands in the neighbourhood of the Danube. The effect of the Magyar movement would ultimately be. to press back the frontier of Great Bulgaria to the Danube, but they were already pressing the Inner Bulgarians into a small territory north of the Sea of Azov, and thus dividing by an alien angl hostile wedge the continuous Bulgarian fringe which had extended along the northern coast of the Euxine. Although the process of the Magyar advance is buried in oblivion, it is not likely that it was not opposed by the resistance of the lords of Pliska, and it is tempting to surmisc that the military camp to which the unlucky Okorses was bound when the waters of the Dnieper overwhelmed him was connected with operations against the Magyars.
From the scanty and incidental notices of Omurtay which occur in the Greek and Latin chronicles, we should not have been able to guess the position which his reign takes in the internal history of Bulgaria. But the accidents of time and devastation have spared some of his own records, which reveal him as it' great buil.ler. lle constructed two new pielieces, or pulatinl fortressus, one on the bank of the Danube, the other at the gates of the Balkans, hud both possessed strategic significance. Tutrakan, the ancient Transmarisca (to the cast of Rustchuk), marks a point where the Danube, divided here by an island amid-stream, offers a conspicuously convenient passage for an army.
Here the Emperor Valens built a bridye of boats, and in the past century the Russians have frequently chosen this place to throw their armies across
Aboba, 191 'Nveyasov ... [dx lenowe (εις) (το φουσάτον έπνίγην εις τη[ν] Τήσων τον ποταμόν.
3 10. 190 Ωκορσης ο κοπανός.
For the Hungarians sec below, l. 423 and Appendix XII.
the river. The remains of a Bulgarian fortress of stone and eurth, at the neighbouring Kadykei, probably represent the stronghold which Omurtay built to command the passage of Transmarisca.3 On an inscribed column, which we may still read in one of the churches of Tyrnovo, whither the pagan monument was transported to serve an architectural use, it is recorded that “the sublime Khan Omurtay, living in his old house (ut l'liska), made a house of high renown on the Danube." But the purpose of this inscription is not to celebrate the building of this residence, but to chronicle the construction of a sepulchre which Omurtay raised half-way between his “two glorious houses" and probably destined for his own resting-place. The measurements, which are carefully noted in the inscription, have enabled modern investigators to identify Omurtay's tomb with a large conical mound or urgan close to the village of Mumdzhilar. The memorial
” concludes with a moralising reflexion : "Man dies, even if he live well, and another is born, and let the latest born, considering this writing, remember him who made it. The name of the ruler is Omurtay, Kans Ubêgê. God grant that he may live a hundred years."
If the glorious house on the Danube was a defence, in the event of an attack of Slavs or other eneinies coming froin the north, Omurtag, although he lived at peace with the Roman Empire, thought it well to strengthen himself against his southern neighbours also, in view of future contingencies. The assassination of Leo and the elevation of Michael II., whose policy he could not foresee, may have been a deterinining motive. At all events it was in the year following this change of dypusty" that Oinurtng built it new royal residence and fortress in the mountnin, on the river Tutsa," commanding the puiss of Vereguva, by which Romun armies had been wont to descend upon Pliska, as well as the adjacent pass of Verbits. We do not know how the new town which the King erected in front of the mountain defiles was called in his own tongue, but the Slavs called it Preslav, “ the glorious,” a namo which scems originally to have been applied to all the palaces of the Bulgarian kings.' It is not probable that Omurtag intended to transfer his principal residence from tho plain to the hills," but his new foundation was destined, as Great Presliv, to become within a hundred years the capital of Bulgaria.
! Cn. Alubu, 502.
Uspenski, ib. 652, identifies Kudykci with the Roman Nigrinianae. Under the remains of the Bulgarian fortress there is a stratum of Roman work.
: The inscription (se next note) gives 40,000 opyliau is the distance between the old and the new palace. This (15 kilometres) corresponds to the distance of Pliska from Silistria and from Kalykci. The Bulgarian fortress at the latter place and the
discovery of an official inscription there (Aboba, 228) justify the identification of Uspenski. Seo ib. 519, 551-552.
* Printed by Jireček, Geschichte, 148 ; by Uspenski, with improved text, in (drern. gor. Tyriora, 5. Jireček's translation is in several points incorrect. - Abobu, 553.
821-822. See inscription translated below.
7 Now called the Great Kanchiia. It is mentioned by Thcophanes (4362),
The foundation of the city is recorded on a large limestone coluinn which was dug out of the carth a few years ago at Chatalar, about four miles from the ruins of Preslav. “Tho sublime Khan Omurtay is divine ruler in the land where he
" was born. Abiding in the Plain* of P'liska, lie made a palace (aulo) on the Tutsil and displayed his power to the Greeks and Slavs. And he constructed with skill a bridge over the Tutsa. And he set up in luis fortress“ four columns, and between the columns he set two bronze lions. May God grant that the divine ruler may press down the Emperor with his foot so long as the Tutsa flows, that he may procure
where tlie texts givccionadev (sc.
· Preslav corresponds to raronuos, the adjective applied to the houinc ou the Danube and to l'liska in the Tyriiωνο inscription (τον δυο νκο τον Favqmpov, A fossitiva purnl wrongly taken for olkov Tov op, by Jirreok; MCO Bury, App. 10 to Gibbon, vi.). The palace on the Danube is also called υπέρφημος (.). C». το αρχαιότατον υπέρφημον and [υπέρ] άπασαν φήμην in an inscription of Jlalamir (Abobu, 233). This word, like prcslar, evidently translated a Bulgarian appellative.
ις τις 11λσκας τον κα(μ)πον. Doubtless kántos designates not the whole meðlov of Alabia, but the fortified enclosure of Pliska.
skal (.....) priv Dúvajiv rov (is) Γραικούς και Σκλάβους. Uspenski supplies étnye. But Omurtag lived at peace with the Greeks. I would silpply ideige (281&e) or soino cquivalout, and rosture is = els (Unpcurki (mi).
μετ' ήνεγκεν) και ιστησιν] εις αυτό το κάστρον (ύγκ:ικki). κάστρον, 1 think, is right, but Methuegkev very doubtful.
? Uspenski thinks that the use of aunch in the inscription implies, the “transference of the capital" (Abuba, 517). But w!ıy should not the Khan have two αυλαί ?
:3 Sec Abuba, 546 8174., for the inscrip tion and the circunistance of its olixcovery. Chatnlar is close to the railway station of Preslav-Krumovo.
? I reach kal(méoja [TW]u otúlwr. The four colunins marked a space in tho centre of which were the two lions, or else two columns were on either side of a gateway and the lions between them. Uspenski restores kal (els évja ("and placed two lions on one of the columns"), an arrangement which sounils too inartistic to be credible.
8 με τον πό[δα) αυτού τον βασιλέα κά[μψειν έως τρε]x[m] ή Τούτζα. 1 real' xduyer (the future is required); Usenski gives κάμπτειν. καταβαλείν might also be thought of.
many captives for the Bulgarians, and that subduing his foes he inay, in joy and happiness, live for a hundred years. The date of the foundation was the Bulgarian year shegor alem, or the fifteenth indiction of the Greeks" (A.D. 821-822). In this valuable record of the foundation of Preslav, we may note with interest the hostile reference to the Roman Emperor as the chief and permanent enemy of Bulgarin, although at this time Bulguria and the Einpirc were at peace.
It was probably a standing formula which had originally been adopted in the reign of some former king, when the two powers were at war.
It has been already related how Omurtay intervened in the civil war between Michael and Thomas, how he defeated the rebel on the field of K@duktos, and returned laden with spoils (A.D. 823). This Wils his only expedition into Romun territory; the Thirty Years' Peace was preserved inviolate throughout his reign. The date of his death is uncertain.2
$ 6. The Reigns of Malamir and Boris Omurtag was succeeded by his youngest son Presiam, though one at least, of his elder sons was still living. ' : Presiain is generally known as Malamir, a Slavonic name which he assumed, perhaps toward the end of his reign. The adoption of this name is a landmark in the gradual process of the assertion of Slavonic influence in the Bulgarian realm. We may surmise that it corresponds to il political situation in which the Khan wils driven to rely on the support of his Slivonic subjects against the Bulgurinn nublos.
We have some ollicinl records of the sublimo Khan Miilamir," though not so many or so important as the records
1 και [δ]ύση αιχμαλώτους πολλούς eldest son and survivedl Omurtag, ac. Boulgá[p]us. I translate this extremely cording to thc story told by Thcophy. uncertain restoration of Uspenski, only lactus, op. cit. 192. See below, p. 382. substituting δόσιν, ε... δώσειν, for his We know that Malamir was ruler δώση.
of Bulgaria in the reign of Theophilus Later than A.D. 827. See ahovc, from Simeon (Cont. Geory. 818). The p. 365. Zlatarski dates the reign as vcrs. Slar. 101 calls him Vladimir, 814-831/2 (sce bobie, 236).
and so the Cod. Par. 854 and Vatic. 3 The evilence, as I holil, points to 1807 ; the printcıl texts of Cimi. the identity of Presiam with Nalamir ; (icory., Lro Cir., and Theoll. Mel. sce Appreillis X. Einravotas, also havo Baldivep. The (rror may havo called Bolvos (is this Bulgarian Duinn arisen from confusion with a later or Slavonic " warrior"?), Willy the Khan Vladimir, who succeeded Boris,