Slike stranica

government retaliated by reinforcing the garrisons of the frontier forts of Thrace in order to carry out a systematic devastation of Thracian Bulgaria.1 This plan released Macedonia from the enemy; Isbules was recalled to defend his country. The absence of the Thracian and Macedonian troops, which these events imply, is explained, if they were at this time engaged in reducing the Slavs of the Peloponnesus."


These hostilities seem to have been followed by a truce,3 and soon afterwards Malamir was succeeded by his nephew Boris (c. A.D. 852). This king, whose reign marks an important epoch in the development of Bulgaria, was soon involved in war with the Servians and with the Croatians. He hoped to avenge the defeats which his uncle had suffered in Servia. But the Servians again proved themselves superior and captured Vladimir, the son of Boris, along with the twelve great boliads. The Bulgarian king was compelled to submit to terms of peace in order to save the prisoners, and fearing that he might be waylaid on his homeward march he asked for a safe-conduct. He was conducted by two Servian


tion (C.I.G. iv. 8691b) found near Philippi. Its obvious meaning is that the Bulgarian king sent Isbules with an army and that he operated in the district of the Smoleanoi, who, we know, lived on the middle course of the Nestos. Cp. Appendix X.

Simeon (Cont. Geory. 821). This notice comes immediately after that of the death of Methodius, which occurred in June 847. Zlatarski, 43 sq., has made it quite clear that Simeon refers here to different events from those recorded by Genesios, 85 sq. (see below). He is almost certainly right in referring the important inscription of Shumla (Aboba, 233) to operations at this period in Thrace (51 sq.), though otherwise I cannot accept his interpretation (sco Appendix X.). The forts of Probaton and Burdizos which are mentioned in it would be two of the xáoтpа referred to by Simeon, with whose notice the words " γρυκι ερημοσᾶ (οι Γραικοὶ ἐρήμωσαν) are obviously in accordance.

There is no independent evidence as to the date of the Peloponnesian war (see below, p. 379).

3 Zlatarski, 53.

The date of the accession of Boris is determined by Zlatarski, 46-47. He reigned thirty-six years (Theophy lactus, Mart. 201), his successor Vladimir four years (ib. 213). Vladimir was still alive in 892 (Ann. Fuld., s.a.), but was succeeded by Simeon not later than 893. This gives 852853 for accession of Boris (Golubinski and Jireček had already dated it to 852-856). 852 is rendered probable by the Bulgarian embassy sent to Lewis the German in that year (Ann. Fuid., s.a.), which was probably to announce the accession and confirm the treaty of 845 (ib., s.a.).

5 Constantine, De adm. imp. 154155 (Servian war) 150 (Croatian war: unsuccessful and tollowed by peace). Zlatarski dates these wars to 854-860 (55). Dümmler (Slawen in Dalm. 397) conjectures that the Croatian war was successful, and that the Croatians ceded Bosnia to Boris. He bases this guess on the apparent fact that about this time the Croatian power seriously declined. He supposes that soon after the conquest, Boris was defeated in his war with the Servians and compelled to surrender Bosnia to them.


princes to the frontier at Rasa, where he repaid their services by ample gifts, and received from them, as a pledge of friendship, two slaves, two falcons, two hounds, and ninety skins.' friendship bore political fruits. The two princes were sons of Muntimir, one of three brothers, who, soon after the Bulgarian invasion, engaged in a struggle for supreme power, and when Muntimir gained the upper hand he sent his rivals to Bulgaria to be detained in the custody of Boris.

During the reign of Boris peace was maintained, notwithstanding occasional menaces, between Bulgaria and the Empire; and before the end of the reign of Michael III. the two powers were drawn into a new relation, when the king accepted Christian, baptism. But the circumstances of this event, which is closely connected with larger issues of European politics, must be reserved for another chapter.

Η γούνας.


2 Genesios, 85-86, says that the Bulgarian ruler (unnamed) threatened to invade Roman territory, but Theodora declared that she would lead an army in person against him. will be no glory to you to defeat a woman; if she defeats you, you will be ridiculous." The Bulgarian thought better of his purpose, and remained quiet in his own country. Cont. Th. 162 says (1) that the king was Boris (Bwywps), and (2) that he purposed to break the treaty, but renewed it ; (3) brings the incident into connexion

with the conversion of the Bulgarians. Zlatarski (54 8q.) accepts the king's name from Cont. Th. and gives reasons for dating the incident to A.D. 852. He thinks that this writer has com. bined the passage in Genesios with another source-the same from which he drew the stories about Theodoro Kupharas, the sister of Boris, and the painter Methodios. I doubt whether the anecdote has any value; but it may be based on the circumstance that Boris on his accession renewed the truce with Byzantium.



§ 1. The Slavs in Greece

THE ninth century was a critical period in the history of the Slavonic world. If in the year A.D. 800 a political prophet had possessed a map of Europe, such as we can now construct, he might have been tempted to predict that the whole eastern half of the continent, from the Danish peninsula to the Peloponnesus, was destined to form a Slavonic empire, or at least a solid group of Slavonic kingdoms. From the mouth of the Elbe to the Ionian Sea there was a continuous line of Slavonic peoples--the Abodrites, the Wilzi, the Sorbs, the Lusatians, the Bohemians, the Slovenes, the Croatians, and the Slavonic settlements in Macedonia and Greece. Behind them were the Lechs of Poland, the kingdom of Great Moravia, Servia, and the strongly organized kingdom of Bulgaria; while farther in the background were all the tribes which were to form the nucleus of unborn Russia. Thus a vertical line from Denmark to the Hadriatic seemed to mark the limit of the Teutonic world, beyond which it might have been deemed impossible that German arms would make any permanent impression on the serried array of Slavs; while in the Balkan peninsula it might have appeared not improbable that the Bulgarian power, which had hitherto proved a formidable antagonist to Byzantium, would expand over Illyricum and Greece, and ultimately drive the Greeks from Constantinople. Such was the horoscope of nations which might plausibly have been drawn from a European chart, and which the history of the next two hundred years was destined to falsify. At

the beginning of the eleventh century the Western Empire of the Germans had extended its power far and irretrievably beyond the Elbe, while the Eastern Empire of the Greeks had trampled the Bulgarian power under foot. And in the meantime the Hungarians had inserted themselves like a wedge between the Slavs of the north and the Slavs of the south. On the other hand, two things had happened which were of great moment for the future of the Slavonic race: the religion of the Greeks and the Teutons had spread among the Slavs, and the kingdom of Russia had been created. The beginnings of both these movements, which were slow and gradual, fall in the period when the Amorian dynasty reigned at New Rome.'

It was under the auspices of Michael III. that the unruly Slavonic tribes in the Peloponnesus were finally brought under the control of the government, and the credit of their subjugation is probably to be imputed to Theodora and her fellowregents. The Slays were diffused all over the peninsula, but the evidence of place-names indicates that their settlements were thickest in Arcadia and Elis, Messenia, Laconia, and Achaia.2 In the plains of Elis, on the slopes of Taygetos, and in the great marshlands of the lower Eurotas, they seem almost entirely to have replaced the ancient inhabitants. Somewhere between Sparta and Megalopolis was the great Slavonic town Veligosti, of which no traces remain. Of the tribes we know only the names of the Milings and the Ezerites. The Milings had settled in the secure fastnesses of Taygetos; the Ezerites, or Lake-men; abode in the neighbouring Helos or marshland, from which they took their name.3 Living independently under their own župans, they seized every favourable opportunity of robbery and plunder. In the reign of Nicephorus (A.D. 807) they formed a conspiracy with the Saracens of Africa to

The introduction of Christianity among the Croatians and Servians was of older date.

2 See Philippson, i. 3-4; Gregorovius, Athen, í. 113 sqq. ; G. Meyer, Aufsätze und Studien (1885), 140. The place-names still require a thoroughgoing investigation. Not a few, which have been taken for Slavonic, may be Greek or Albanian. E.g. Malevo-the name of Parnon and other mountains -was explained as Slavonic by Fallmerayer and Gregorovius, but it is

undoubtedly Albanian, from μaX\j, "mountain," as Philippson points out (ib. 8). Goritsa is often enumerated among the Slavonic names, but it may come from A-goritsa (ȧyopá). But there are plenty about which there can be no doubt (such as Krivitsa, Garditsa, Kamenitsa).

3 Ezero, Slavonic for lake.

The source is Constantine, De adm. imp. c. 49. He says that the story was told orally (aypapws) during their lifetime by contemporaries to

attack the rich city of Patrae. The stratêgos of the province whose residence was at Corinth, delayed in sending troops to relieve the besieged town, and the citizens suffered from want of food and water. The story of their deliverance is inextricably bound up with a legend of supernatural aid, vouchsafed to them by their patron saint. A scout was sent to a hill, east of the town, anxiously to scan the coast road from Corinth, and if he saw the approach of the troops, to signal to the inhabitants, when he came within sight of the walls, by lowering a flag; while if he kept the flag erect, it would be known that there was no sign of the help which was so impatiently expected. He returned disappointed, with his flag erect, but his horse slipped and the flag was lowered in the rider's fall. The incident was afterwards imputed to the direct interposition of the Deity, who had been moved to resort to this artifice by the intercessions of St. Andrew, the guardian of Patrae. The citizens, meanwhile, seeing the flag fall, and supposing that succour was at hand, immediately opened the gates and fell upon the Saracens and the Slavs. Conspicuous in their ranks rode a great horseman, whose more than human appearance terrified the barbarians. Aided by

this champion, who was no other than St. Andrew himself, the Greeks routed the enemy and won great booty and many captives. Two days later the stratêgos arrived, and sent a full report of all the miraculous circumstances to the Emperor, who issued a charter for the Church of St. Andrew, ordaining that the defeated Slavs, their families, and all their belongings should become the property of the Church" inasmuch as the

the younger generation. But the genuine source was the olyλor (seal) or charter of Nicephorus, to which he refers, and which was extant in the eleventh century. For it is cited in a Synodal Letter of the Patriarch Nicolaus in the reign of Alexius I.; sc. Leunclavius, Jus Graeco-Romanum,

278 (1596), or Migne, P.G. 119, 877. Here the occurrence is briefly described, and dated 218 years after the occupation of the Peloponnesus, which the Patriarch connected with the invasion of A.D. 589 (Evagrius, vi. 10). Hence we get the date A.D. 807 for the siege of Patrac (ep. Fallmerayer, Morea, i. 185). But the Patriarch speaks of Avars, not of Slavs, Are we

to infer that there was an Avar settlement in the Peloponnesus, that Avars joined the Slays in the attack, and were mentioned in the Chrysobull of Nicephorus? I drew this inference in a paper on Navarino (Hermathena, xxxi. 430 sqq., 1905), connecting it with the interpretation of Avarinosthe original name of Navarino--as an Avar settlement. See also Miller in Eng. Hist. Review, 20, 307 sqq (1905). But another possible derivation is from the Slavonic javoră, “maple," so that the name would mean "maplewood"; cp. 'Aßapiroa in Epirus, "Aßopos in Phocis: G. Meyer, Analecta Gracciensia, 12 (1893).

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