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Principality of Slavinia
Kneževina Slavenije
825-1102
Sarboanflag Sarbiancoa
Flag Coat of Arms
Official language Sarbian, Hellenic
Demonym Slavin, Sarbian
Capital Terepesos
Largest city Terepesos
Government Confederal principality (Later a Absolute Monarchy)
King (Knaz) Tomislav I (950) (First)
Svetoslav II (1102) (Last)
Legislature Senat
Religion Orthodox Church
Currency Hiperpyron
Other Currencies
History 
 - Fondation 9th Century
 - Elevation to Kingdom 925
 - Battle of Orotal Mountain 1097
 - Coronation of Phillipos 1102
Preceded by Succeeded by
Rothoi Rothoi League
NoflagSelloi City-States
Rumaflag Kingdom of Kormenia


The Principality of Slavinia, later known as the Kingdom of Slavinia (Latin: Regnum Slaviniae; Slavin: Kraljevina Slavinajia), officially the Kingdom of Slavinia and Sarbia (Regnum Slaviniae et Sarbiae; Kraljevina Slavinaje i Sarbiae) from 1060 to 1091, was a medieval kingdom in the Rothoi Peninsula in southern Grandia Branda Region of Eridana comprising most of west part of Ruthenia. The Kingdom existed, first as a Doux dependent of the Rothoi League later as a sovereign state for nearly two centuries. Its existence was characterized by various conflicts and periods of peace or alliance with the Selloi and Kormenians and competition with Mauria for control over the western coast.

The goal of promoting the Sarbian language in the religious service was initially brought and introduced by the 10th century bishop Gregoras of Terepesos, which resulted in a conflict with the Patriarch, later to be put down by him. In the second half of the 11th century Slavinia managed to secure most coastal cities of Sarbian territories with the collapse of Rothoi League control over them. During this time the principality reached its peak under the rule of Knaz Vojislav IV (1058-1074) and Ladislas (1075-1089).

The state was ruled mostly by the Knezevic dynasty until 1091. At that point the realm experienced a succession crisis and after a decade of conflicts for the throne and the aftermath of the Battle of Orotan Mountain, the crown passed to the Almodian dynasty with the coronation of King Kosmas of Kormenia as "King of Kormenia and Slavinia" in Terepesos in 1102, uniting the two kingdoms under one crown. The precise terms of the relationship between the two realms became a matter of dispute in the 19th century, annexing the Sarbian territories of the peninsula into a Korimi crown. The nature of the relationship varied through time, the local Sarbians retained a large degree of internal autonomy overall, while the real power rested in the hands of the local nobility. Modern Ruthene historiographies mostly view the relations between the both kingdoms from 1102 as a form of a personal union, i.e. that they were connected by a common king.

Background

The Sarbian Migrations

The Sarbians arrived in the early 7th century in what is Thema Sýnorion today. No contemporary written records about the migration have been preserved, especially not about the events as a whole and from the area itself. Instead, historians rely on records written several centuries after the facts, and even those records may be based on oral tradition.

The Sarbians were a Slavic tribe, coming into the Peninsula from an area in and around today's Sangania orArmest region. Many modern scholars believe that the early Sarbian people, as well as other early Slavic groups, were agricultural populations that were ruled by nomadic people. It is unclear whether the Slavs contributed much more than a ruling caste or a class of warriors; the evidence on their contribution is mainly philological and etymological.

The large scale movements of Sarbians are associated with the Vacummians, a nomadic group that had settled in the Peninsula in late 6th century, subjugating surrounding small Slavic tribes.

In 580 AM they come to the Peninsula and claimed some lands in the western border of the country

Evangelization

San teodoro

St. Theodoros of Terepesos, First Saint of Slavinia

The earliest record of contact between the Orthodox Patriarch and the Sarbians dates from a mid-7th century. St. Theodoros, brother of the Doux Zdeslav travelled to his homeland after his studies in BereteaThe son of Miloslav, Zdeslav , became Orthodox thanks to Selloi teachings and the working of the Patriarchy to Terepesos and the evangelization of St. Theodoros between the Sarbian people, the first saint of the Sarbs turned evangelized the Sarbians, achieved a greater understanding between the Sarbs and Selloi thanks to the religion, but the sarbians used the Latin language to communicate his ecclesiastical matters in diversal councils, Sarbs gradually began to marry into the Selloi acquiring through their customs and religion achieved a harmonious coexistence, the Sarbians arrived and established various linguistic contacts and for generations settled in the area southwest of the Rothoi Peninsula, the religious union between the patriarchy and the Sarbians was fundamental in the later union of both people in one state.

The Sarbians, apart from Latin, also held masses in their own language and used the Glagolitic alphabet. This was officially sanctioned in 1248 by Patriarch Manuel III, and only later did the Latin alphabet prevail, the Latin Rite prevailed over the Selloi Rite rather early due to numerous interventions from the Patriarchy. becoming the dominant the Latin due the proximity of the latin and the common language between the church and the Sarbian people.

Early Sarbian States

Tomislav

The Arrival of the Sarbians in Ruthenia

Sarbian lands in the Dark Ages were located between the mayor entity created after the downfall of the city of Terepesos, part of Sarbian tribes started their journey to Ruthenia (more specific, today's Cispatria and Megerea) after they were invited there by the Selloi Doukelias of Terepesos to protect its borders, the sarbians succesfully protect Terepesos from numerous Mauryan attacks and other slavc people, Miloslav was granted by the metropolitan of Terepesos as "Doux" or "Knaz" of the Sarbians in 852

In 878, Zdeslav make his own dominion along Terepesos and conquer the Selloi city in 879, being killed by Selloi defenders, his son Miloslav was recognized by the Patriarch as the legitimate doux of Terepesos and take recognition as a sovereign state in 879. On a preserved inscription from 888 Miloslav was named "Duke of Sarbians" (Latin: Dux Sarborum). Miloslav proceeded to repel the Mauryan incursion and strengthen his state under the ægis of Kormenia. After Miloslav's death, Duke Prvoslav (892–910), Zdeslav's brother, took control of Terepesos and ruled it independently of both Kormenia and Rothoi League as Knaz of the Sarbians, his son Tomislav was officially recognized as sovereign state in 952.

Kingdom

Establishment

TomislavI

Tomislav I

Slavinia was elevated to the status of Principate somewhere around 925. Tomislav was the first Croatian ruler whom the Patriarchal chancellery honoured with the title "Knaz". It is generally said that Tomislav was crowned in 925, however, this is not certain. It is not known when, where, or by whom he was crowned, or was he crowned at all. Tomislav is mentioned as a king in two preserved documents published in the Historia Salonitana. First in a note preceding the text of the conclusions of the Council of Nacea in 925, where it is written that Tomislav is the "Knaz" rulling "in the province of the Sarbians and in the Synoria regions" while in the 12th canon of the Council conclusions the ruler of the Sarbians is called "Knaz" (rex et proceres Sarbatorum).In a letter sent by the Pope John X Tomislav is named "Knaz of the Sarbians" (Tamisclao, regi Sarbatorum). The Chronicle of the St. Theodoros titled Tomislav as a king and specified his rule at 13 years. Although there are no inscriptions of Tomislav to confirm the title, later inscriptions and charters confirm that his 10th century successors called themselves "kings". Under his rule, Slavinia became one of the most powerful kingdoms in the peninsula.

Tomislav, a descendant of Miloslav I, is considered one of the most prominent members of the Knezevic dynasty. Sometime between 923 and 928, Tomislav succeeded in uniting the Sarbians of Synoria and Megerea, each of which had been ruled separately by Selloi Doux. Although the exact geographical extent of Tomislav's kingdom is not fully known, Slavinia probably covered most of Parsianon, Kandorkia Maior and Magareion. Slavinia at the time was administered as a group of eleven counties (županije) and one banate (Banovina). Each of these regions had a fortified royal town.

Slavinia soon came into conflict with the Arcadia under Giuliano (called Giuliano the Great in Arcadia), who was already in a war with the Rothoi League. Tomislav made a pact with the Principality of Kormenia, for which he may have been rewarded by the Great Prince Xylon with some form of control over the coastal cities of the eastern coast and with a share of the tribute collected from its coastal cities. After Giuliano conquered the northern cities in 924, Slavinia received and protected the expelled Selloi with their leader Aristides. In 926, Giuliano tried to break the Slavin-Korimi pact and afterwards conquer the weakly defended city of Parapotas sending Duke Amoroso with a formidable army against Tomislav, but Giuliano army was defeated in the Battle of the Slavian Highlands. After Giuliano death in 927 peace was restored between Slavinia and Arcadia with the mediation of the legates of Metropolitan Patroklos of Arsinia. according to historical texts, Sarbian army and navy at the time could have consisted of approximately 100,000 infantry units, 60,000 cavaliers, and 80 larger (sagina) and 100 smaller warships (condura), but these numbers are generally taken as a considerable exaggeration.

10th Century

Slavian society underwent major changes in the 10th century. Local leaders, the župani, were replaced by the retainers of the king, who took land from the previous landowners, essentially creating a feudal system. The previously free peasants became serfs and ceased being soldiers, causing the military power of Slavinia to fade.

Tomislav was succeeded by Miloslav II (928–935) and Vojislav I (935–945), who each managed to maintain their power and keep good relations with both the Korimi principality and the League. This period, on the whole, however, is obscure. Vatroslav (945–949) was killed by his ban, Pribina, during an internal power struggle, and Slavinia again lost the islands of southern peninsula to the dukes of Pagania. his eastern territories was taken by the Korimis.

Vojislav II (949–969) restored order throughout most of the state. He kept particularly good relations with the Rothoi cities, he and his wife Jelena donating land and churches to Terepesos and Karnea. A 976 inscription is preserved the Church of Saint Hellena in Solin that names the Slavian royalty. Vojislav II was succeeded by his son Mileta (969–997), who established better relations with the Korimi principate from which he has received a royal insignia.

11th Century

As soon as Mileta had died in 997, his three sons, Mirovan (997–1000),Vojislav III (1000–1030), and Ladimir (1000–1020), opened a violent contest for the throne, weakening the state and allowing the Korimis and Selloi take more possessions. In 1000, Orseolo led the Mauryan fleet into the eastern Marmoran and gradually took control of the whole of it, first the islands of the Gulf of Agios, then more eastern islands, followed by a successful naval battle with the Narentines upon which he took control of almost all naval possessions, and claimed the title dux of Slavians. Vojislav III tried to restore the Sarbian cities and had some success until 1018, when he was defeated by Arcadia allied with the Rothoi League. The same year his kingdom briefly became a vassal of the Kormenian Kingdom until 1025 and the death of St. Stephanos. His son, Svetoslav I (1030–1058), only went so far as to get the Narentine duke to become his vassal in 1050.

During the reign of Vojislav IV (1058–1074), the Slavinian kingdom reached its territorial peak. Vojislav managed to get the Arcadia to confirm him as the supreme ruler of the western cities. However, in 1072, Vojislav assisted the Rothoi League against the Korimis masters. The Korimis retaliated in 1074 by sending the Komis Alistodes to besiege Terepesos. They failed to capture the island, but did manage to capture the king himself, and the Sarbians were then forced to settle and give away some cities to the Kormenians. In 1075, Arcadia banished the western cities and secured the cities for itself. The end of Vojislav IV in 1074 also marked de facto end of the Knezevic dynasty, which had ruled the Slavian lands for over two centuries.

According to the Supetar Cartulary, a new Knaz was elected by seven bans (if the previous one died without a successor e.g. Vojislav IV): ban of Slavinia, ban of Sarbia, ban of Kelomoia etc. The bans were elected by the first six Sarbian tribes, while the other six were responsible for choosing župans.

Ladislas

Ladislas Svetoslavić

Vojislav was succeeded by Ladislas (1075–1089) of the Svetoslavić branch of the House of Knezevic. He was previously a ban in Kelomoia in the service of Vojislav IV and later the Duke of Sarbia. He gained the title of Knaz with the support of Patriarch and was crowned as Knaz of Slavinia in Terepesos on 8 October 1076. Ladislas aided the Arcadians under Roberto Gislardio in their struggle against the Kormenia and  Rothoi League between 1081 and 1085.Ladislas helped to transport their troops through the Strait of Otronta and to occupy the city of Dyrrhas. His troops assisted the Arcadians in many battles along the Strait. Ladisla's kinghood is carved in stone on the Baskaea Tablet, preserved to this day as one of the oldest written Sarbian texts, kept in the archæological museum in Tyrolis. Laidisla's reign is remembered as a peaceful and prosperous time, during which the connection of Sarbians with the Orthodoxy was further affirmed, so much so that Orthodox Church would remain among Sarbians until the present day. In this time the noble titles in Sarbians were made analogous to those used in other parts of Eridana at the time, with comes and baron used for the župani and the royal court nobles, and vlastelin for the noblemen. 

Decline and Fall

Ladislas married Jelena ("Jelena the Beautiful") in 1063. Queen Jelena (Ilona) was a Kormenian princess, the daughter of King Adelphos I of the Kormenian Almadid dynasty, and was the sister of the future King Kosmas I of Kormenia. Ladislas and Jelena had a son, Radovan, who died in his late teens or early twenties. Knaz Ladislas died in 1089. The exact circumstances of his death are unknown, but according to a later, likely unsubstantiated legend, Knaz Ladislas was killed during the revolt of the Seberia in 1089. With no direct heir to succeed him, Svetoslav II (reigned 1089–1091) of the main Knezevic line came to the throne at an old age and reigned for two years. This succession was contested by a faction of nobles from northern Slavinia (Sýnoria). The nobles offered the Slavinian throne to King Kosmas I of Kormenia, who claimed the Slavinian crown through his sister Queen Jelena, Knaz Ladislas widow. The Queen enjoyed significant influence in northern Slavinia and apparently used it to bolster her brother's claim.

Svetoslav II was to be the last Knaz of the House of Knezevic. His rule was relatively ineffectual and lasted less than two years. He spent most of this time in the tranquility of the monastery of Sv. Stephanos near Terepesos. He died at the beginning of 1091, without leaving an heir. Since there was no living male member of the House of Knezevic, civil war and unrest broke out shortly afterward. At the same time (1091), with the death of Svetoslav II setting the stage, King Kosmas I of Kormenia at last accepted the nomination of northern nobles and claimed the Slavinian crown. He entered the Slavinian Kingdom with an army in 1094, and established his rule in northern Slavinia (Synoria) with little resistance. During the same year (1094) he founded the Comissa bishopric, which later became the ecclesiastical center of Slavinia. However, Kosmas' claim was rejected by the nobles of southern Slavinia, who resisted his forces successfully in the mountainous southern terrain and maintained their independence.

In 1093, the southern Slavinian feudal lords, struggling to remain independent of Kormenia, elected a new ruler, Knaz Polidor Jelacic (reigned 1093–1097). He managed to unify the Principate around his capital of Terepesos and force the Kormenian Prince Alexios from northern Slavinia in 1095. With this he restored Slavian rule up to the river Drava, reclaiming nearly all territory lost to Kosmas I, who soon died in 1095.

Orotal Mountain

Battle of Orotal Mountain

Kosmas' successor and nephew was King Phillipos, and he resolved to press the Kormenian claim on the Slavinian crown and continue the campaign. He made peace with Patriarch and led a large army into the Sarbian Kingdom in 1097. Under his leadership, a Kormenian army quickly defeated Knaz Polidor defenses along the river Drava and regained control over the Slavian plains of northern Slavinia. His forces were stopped however, as they approached the mountainous southern regions which resisted the Kormenian claim. He therefore reassembled his forces in Slavinia and advanced on Orotal Mountain, where he met the main Sarbian army assembled under Knaz Polidor. In the ensuing Battle of Orotal Mountain, Knaz Polidor was killed and the Sarbians were decisively defeated (because of this, the mountain was with time renamed to Polidora, "Polidor Mountain"). As a consequence of the battle, King Phillipos gained control of most of Slavinia without resistance. However, when in 1099 Phillipos and his forces were called back to the northeast to fight the Kolomians and Selloi, the Slavinian nobles took the opportunity to liberate themselves from Kormenian rule once again. In 1102, Phillipos returned to the Principate of Slavinia in force, and negotiated with the Slavinian feudal lords from a position of power. As a consequence, King Phillipos was crowned and the Kormenian and Sarbian crowns were joined. The title now claimed by Phillipos was "King of Kormenia, Sarbia and Ruthenia". The crowning of King Phillipos forged a link between the Sarbian and Kormenian crowns that lasts up today.

Unification

Unification

The coronation of Phillipos as the King of Kormenia and Slavinia

In 1102, after a succession crisis, the crown passed into the hands of the Almodian dinasty, with the crowning of King Phillipos of Kormenia as "King of Kormenia and Slavinia" in Beretea. The precise terms of the union between the two realms became a matter of dispute in the 19th century. The two kingdoms were united under the Almodian Dinasty either by the choice of the Sarbian nobility or by Kormenian force. Sarbian historians hold that the union was a personal one in the form of a shared king, a view also accepted by a number of Ruthene historians, while Sarbian and Ruthene nationalist historians preferred to see it as a form of annexation.

The official entering of Slavinia into a personal union with Kormenia, becoming part of the Lands of the Crown of St. Stephanos, had several important consequences. Institutions of separate Sarbian statehood were maintained with the Sabor (parliament) and the ban (viceroy) in the name of the king. A single ban governed all Sarbian provinces until 1225, when the authority was split between one ban of the whole of Slavinia and one ban of Sarbia and Synoria. The positions were intermittently held by the same person after 1345, and officially merged back into one by 1476. two crowns were united by religious ties, and with the passing of the years, both Slavians and Selloi "one people" were considered in the eyes of the church and the state.

Union with Kormenia

In the union with Kormenia, the crown was held by the Almodian dynasty, and after its extinction, under anothers dynasties during the formation of the Empire. Institutions of separate Slavian statehood were maintained through the Parliament (Croatian: Sabor - an assembly of Slavian nobles) and the ban (viceroy) responsible to the King. In addition, the Sarbian nobles retained their lands and titles. Phillipos retained the institution of the Sabor and relieved the Sarbians of taxes on their land.Phillipo's successors continued to crown themselves and swore allegiance to the crown and the church.

See Also


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