Bulgaria the Republic of Bulgaria, is a country in Southeast Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north and North Macedonia to the west and Turkey to the south, the Black Sea to the east; the capital and largest city is Sofia. With a territory of 110,994 square kilometres, Bulgaria is Europe's 16th-largest country. One of the earliest societies in the lands of modern-day Bulgaria was the Neolithic Karanovo culture, which dates back to 6,500 BC. In the 6th to 3rd century BC the region was a battleground for Thracians, Persians and ancient Macedonians; the Eastern Roman, or Byzantine, Empire lost some of these territories to an invading Bulgar horde in the late 7th century. The Bulgars founded the First Bulgarian Empire in AD 681, which dominated most of the Balkans and influenced Slavic cultures by developing the Cyrillic script; this state lasted until the early 11th century, when Byzantine emperor Basil II conquered and dismantled it. A successful Bulgarian revolt in 1185 established a Second Bulgarian Empire, which reached its apex under Ivan Asen II.
After numerous exhausting wars and feudal strife, the Second Bulgarian Empire disintegrated in 1396 and its territories fell under Ottoman rule for nearly five centuries. The Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78 resulted in the formation of the current Third Bulgarian State. Many ethnic Bulgarian populations were left outside its borders, which led to several conflicts with its neighbours and an alliance with Germany in both world wars. In 1946 Bulgaria became part of the Soviet-led Eastern Bloc; the ruling Communist Party gave up its monopoly on power after the revolutions of 1989 and allowed multi-party elections. Bulgaria transitioned into a democracy and a market-based economy. Since adopting a democratic constitution in 1991, the sovereign state has been a unitary parliamentary republic with a high degree of political and economic centralisation; the population of seven million lives in Sofia and the capital cities of the 27 provinces, the country has suffered significant demographic decline since the late 1980s.
Bulgaria is a member of the European Union, NATO, the Council of Europe. Its market economy is part of the European Single Market and relies on services, followed by industry—especially machine building and mining—and agriculture. Widespread corruption is a major socioeconomic issue; the name Bulgaria is derived from a tribe of Turkic origin that founded the country. Their name is not understood and difficult to trace back earlier than the 4th century AD, but it is derived from the Proto-Turkic word bulģha and its derivative bulgak; the meaning may be further extended to "rebel", "incite" or "produce a state of disorder", i.e. the "disturbers". Ethnic groups in Inner Asia with phonologically similar names were described in similar terms: during the 4th century, the Buluoji, a component of the "Five Barbarian" groups in Ancient China, were portrayed as both a "mixed race" and "troublemakers". Neanderthal remains dating to around 150,000 years ago, or the Middle Paleolithic, are some of the earliest traces of human activity in the lands of modern Bulgaria.
The Karanovo culture arose circa 6,500 BC and was one of several Neolithic societies in the region that thrived on agriculture. The Copper Age Varna culture is credited with inventing gold metallurgy; the associated Varna Necropolis treasure contains the oldest golden jewellery in the world with an approximate age of over 6,000 years. The treasure has been valuable for understanding social hierarchy and stratification in the earliest European societies; the Thracians, one of the three primary ancestral groups of modern Bulgarians, appeared on the Balkan Peninsula some time before the 12th century BC. The Thracians excelled in metallurgy and gave the Greeks the Orphean and Dionysian cults, but remained tribal and stateless; the Persian Achaemenid Empire conquered most of present-day Bulgaria in the 6th century BC and retained control over the region until 479 BC. The invasion became a catalyst for Thracian unity, the bulk of their tribes united under king Teres to form the Odrysian kingdom in the 470s BC.
It was weakened and vassalized by Philip II of Macedon in 341 BC, attacked by Celts in the 3rd century, became a province of the Roman Empire in AD 45. By the end of the 1st century AD, Roman governance was established over the entire Balkan Peninsula and Christianity began spreading in the region around the 4th century; the Gothic Bible—the first Germanic language book—was created by Gothic bishop Ulfilas in what is today northern Bulgaria around 381. The region came under Byzantine control after the fall of Rome in 476; the Byzantines were engaged in prolonged warfare against Persia and could not defend their Balkan territories from barbarian incursions. This enabled the Slavs to enter the Balkan Peninsula as marauders through an area between the Danube River and the Balkan Mountains known as Moesia; the interior of the peninsula became a country of the South Slavs, who lived under a democracy. The Slavs assimilated the Hellenized and Gothicized Thracians in the rural areas. Not l
House of Palatinate-Neumarkt
Palatinate-Neumarkt was a subdivision of the Wittelsbach dynasty of the German Palatinate. Its capital was Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz; this line divided after the death of Rupert of Germany in the year 1410 into four lines: Palatinate-Neumarkt, Palatinate-Simmern, Palatinate-Mosbach, the electoral line with the capital in Heidelberg. Palatinate-Neumarkt prospered under Rupert's son John. From his marriage with Catherine of Pomerania-Stolp, Christopher of Bavaria was born, who governed the Kalmar union. With Christopher's death, Palatinate-Neumarkt line expired, its possessions fell to the line Palatinate-Mosbach, which became Palatinate-Mosbach-Neumarkt. In 1524, a new apanage named; when he died in 1558, it fell back to the Electoral Palatinate
Nogai called Nohai, Nogay, Kara Nokhai, Isa Nogai, was a general and de facto ruler of the Golden Horde and a great-great-grandson of Genghis Khan. His grandfather was the 7th son of Jochi. Nogai Khan was a notable convert to Islam. Though he never formally ruled the Golden Horde himself, he was the co-ruler of the state alongside whatever Khan was in power at the time, had unrestricted control over the portions west of the Dnieper. At his height, Nogai was one of the most powerful men in Europe, thought of as the Horde's true head; the Russian chroniclers gave him the title of Tsar, the Franciscan missionaries in the Crimea spoke of him as a co-emperor. His name is spelled Nohai and Nogaj. Pelliot wrote that Nokhai meant a "dog." Although in the Mongolian language, "nokhoi" means a "dog", it does not mean a negative and insulting name in its context, since people were called "dogs" among the Mongols at the time and sometimes presently as "nokhduud" as in "you dogs." Genghis Khan called his capable generals "dogs of war" or "men of war."
This came about because Mongols had a lot of dogs, dogs were useful for people's lives in hunting and warnings. According to the historian J. J. Saunders, the name "Dog" was used to distract the attention of evil spirits; the Mongols sometimes referred to the wolf as a "steppe dog". Nogai was born to Tatar, a son of Terval, a son of Jochi, he would rule his grandfather's appanage. After the Mongol invasion of Europe, Batu Khan left Nogai with a tumen in modern-day Moldavia and Romania as a frontier guard, he was a nephew of Berke Khan as well as Batu Khan and Orda Khan, under his uncle, he became a powerful and ambitious warlord. In his years, Berke began to delegate more and more responsibility to his promising nephew. Nogai's leading role first appears, along with Talabuga, under famous Mongol general Burundai as a battle commander in 1259/1260, he was a young sub-commander during the second major Mongol raid against Poland, undertaken to pay for Berke's war against Hulegu. Here Nogai plundered Sandomierz, Kraków and other cities.
Nogai's father Tatar died. In 1262, a civil war broke out between the Golden Horde and the Ilkhanate, with Berke and Hulegu supporting separate claimants for the title of khagan. Nogai Khan was given a high role in the army of the Golden Horde, he had a command of 30,000 men. He was first charged with raiding along the frontier into the territory of the Ilkhanate, he annihilated an advance guard under Shiramun, raided as far as the Kur, but was himself repulsed near Shabran in December 1262, forced to retreat. Nogai took on the task of repelling Hulegu's attempted invasion, as the latter was emboldened. While Hulegu's men were looting the camp, Nogai's troops surprised Hulegu's at the Terek River, cutting down a great many of them in an ambush. Hulegu rallied a day-long battle ensued; the Ilkhanate army was routed and many thousands of them were drowned while trying to flee, the survivors fled back into Azerbaijan. This victory enhanced Nogai's reputation in the Horde, he was a trusted lieutenant of Berke.
In August 1264, the war ended when Kublai Khan was crowned khagan with the acknowledgement of Berke and Chagatai. However the war was renewed between the Golden Horde and Ilkhanate in 1265. Nogai was given the task of leading an invasion of the Ilkhanate, now ruled by Hulegu's successor Abaqa Khan, he plundered some areas before being met in battle by Abaqa on the Aksu. A fierce and severe battle ensued in which Nogai was injured and his army was forced to retreat. Abaqa pursued Nogai's army across the Kur, hoping to wipe it out, but Abaqa was forced to withdraw when Berke arrived with reinforcements. In 1265, Nogai led his army across the Danube, he routed the Byzantine forces before him, devastated the cities of Thrace. In 1266, the Emperor Michael VIII Palaeologus, anxious to make an alliance, gave his daughter Euphrosyne Palaiologina to Nogai as a wife, he gave much valuable fabric to the Golden Horde as tribute, became an ally of the Horde, principally dealing with it through Nogai instead of the official khan.
He gifted Nogai pearls and valuable garments, temporarily causing Nogai to abandon the animal skins he wore outside of battle. Nogai did however slyly ask if the jewels and clothes could ward off lightning bolts, prevent headache, or promote good health, before praising the practicality of the dog skins his people wore. Berke died sometime in 1266. Despite his influence, Nogai did not try to seize rulership of the Golden Horde, settling for serving Mengu-Timur Khan; however he managed to exercised de facto control, with near-total control over the lands west of the Dnieper. In addition to his Turkic subjects he ruled the Ukrainians of Galicia-Volhynia, the Ossetians and part of the Vlachs directly, he undertook his own foreign policy, sending envoys to the Mamluk Sultanate, forming marriage alliances with Byzantium and the Il-Kha
George II of Bulgaria
George Terter II reigned as tsar of Bulgaria between 1322 and 1323. The exact date of his birth is unknown, but he was born not long before 1307. George Terter II was the son of Theodore Svetoslav and Euphrosyne, was named after his paternal grandfather George Terter I, it is possible that he was associated as co-emperor by his father in 1321, but the sources are unclear. After his father's death in 1322, he became involved in the civil war in the Byzantine Empire, in which the throne was being contested between Andronikos II Palaiologos and his grandson Andronikos III Palaiologos. Taking advantage of the situation, George Terter II invaded Byzantine Thrace and, encountering little, if any, conquered the major city of Philippopolis and part of the surrounding area in 1322. A Bulgarian garrison was installed under the command of a general named Ivan the Russian, a court scribe praised George Terter II as a "possessor of the Bulgarian and the Greek sceptre". A new campaign the same year brought the subjugation of several fortresses around Adrianople, but the Bulgarians were now turned back and defeated by Andronikos III.
The Byzantine emperor was preparing for an invasion of Bulgaria, when he heard the news that George Terter II had died of natural causes. George Terter II did not have any known offspring, he was succeeded by his distant cousin Michael Asen III, now called Michael Shishman. Fine, John Van Antwerp; the Late Medieval Balkans: A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. ISBN 978-0-472-08260-5. Detailed List of Bulgarian Rulers
House of Estridsen
The House of Estridsen, sometimes called the Estridsen or Estrith Dynasty, was the dynasty that provided the Kings of Denmark from 1047 to 1412. The dynasty is named after its ancestor Estrid Svendsdatter; the dynasty is sometimes called the Ulfinger, after Estrid's husband, Ulf the Earl. Their family coat of arms became the coat of arms of Denmark; the name of the Estridsen dynasty recalls their acquisition of the Danish crown through the marriage of Ulf the Earl to Estrid Svendsdatter of the House of Knýtlinga, daughter of Sweyn Forkbeard and sister of Cnut the Great. Genealogies trace the family from Jomsviking leader Styrbjörn the Strong, a scion of the Swedish royal family, who are in turn given a descent from legendary King Sigurd Hring, regarded as mythical by most modern historians; the reliable ancestry traces no earlier than Ulf's own father, the obscure Thorgil Sprakling and the grandfather Björn. The dynasty reached its peak with the Kalmar Union, when its members reigned as kings of Denmark and Sweden in personal union.
The dynasty came to end in 1412 with the death of its last member Queen Margaret I. All of the subsequent monarchs of Denmarks were cognatic descendants of the House of Estridsen. Thorgil Sprakling Ulf the Earl, murdered in 1026 Jarl in England from 1017, married Estrid Svendsdatter, a daughter of Sweyn Forkbeard and a sister of Cnut the Great Sweyn II of Denmark, Jarl from 1042, King of Denmark from 1047 Sweyn the Crusader, murdered in 1097, married Florine, the daughter of Odo I, Duke of Burgundy Harald III Sigrid, married Gottschalk, a prince of the Obotrites Saint Canute IV, Jarl of Zealand from 1076, King of Denmark from 1080, married Adela, daughter of Robert I, Count of Flanders Blessed Charles the Good, murdered on 2 March 1127 in Bruges, Count of Flanders from 1119, married c. 1119 to Margaret, daughter of Renaud II, Count of Clermont-en-Beauvaisis Cecilia, married to Erik Jarl in Västergötland Ingerid, married Folke the Fat Jarl in Sweden Olaf I, Jarl of Southern Jutland from 1080, King of Denmark from 1086, married Ingegerd, the daughter of King Harald Hardrada of Norway Ingerid, married c. 1070 to King Olaf III of Norway Eric I the Good, Jarl of Zealand from 1080, King of Denmark from 1095 — for his descendants, see below Svend Tronkræver Henrik Skadelår Magnus II of Sweden, King of Sweden from 1160, married Brigida, daughter of King Harald IV Gille of Norway Canute, Duke of Southern Jutland from 1150, Duke of Jutland from 1157 Buris, Duke of Southern Jutland from 1162, married c. 1166 to a daughter of Herman II, Count of Winzenburg Niels, killed 25 June 1134, King of Denmark from 1104, married Margaret Fredkulla, a daughter of King Inge the Elder of Sweden Magnus I, Duke of Västergötland from 1125, King of Denmark from 1134, married Richeze, a daughter of Bolesław III Wrymouth Canute V, Duke of Jutland from 1147, co-ruler of Denmark from 1154, married in 1156 to Helena, a daughter of King Sverker I of Sweden Saint Niels Valdemar, Bishop of Schleswig from 1182 to 1208, Archbishop of Bremen in 1192 Björn, Earl in England Asbjörn, Jarl in Denmark Gytha, married Godwin of Wessex.
House of Mecklenburg
The House of Mecklenburg known as Nikloting, is a North German dynasty that ruled until 1918 in the Mecklenburg region, being among the longest-ruling families of Europe. The family was established by Pribislav, an Obotrite prince who converted to Christianity and accepted the suzerainty of Saxon Duke Henry the Lion, his fallen father's enemy, became the Lord of Mecklenburg; the Obotrites were subsequently Germanized. The main branch of the house was elevated in 1347 to ducal rank; the Dukes of Mecklenburg pursued from the 14th century a claim to inheritance in Sweden. The Duke of Mecklenburg was a descendant and the heir of two women whom legends tied to Scandinavian royal houses: Lord Henry II of Mecklenburg's paternal great-grandmother, a Scandinavian noblewoman named Christina, the wife of Henry Borwin II, Lord of Mecklenburg, was a daughter of King Sverker II of Sweden by his first wife. Christina was the mother of John I of Mecklenburg, whose son was Henry Lord of Mecklenburg. Lord Henry II of Mecklenburg's maternal grandmother, a lady named Marianna, was the first wife of Duke Barnim I of Pomerania, Lord of Wolgast, as well as sister of King Eric XI of Sweden.
Marianna had given birth to an only surviving child, a daughter named Anastasia of Pomerania, who became the wife of Henry I of Mecklenburg and mother of Henry II. The Sverker dynasty had long been extinct, having lost the throne to Eric XI; the male dynasty of Eric X was extinct, issue of his other daughters had been sidestepped by Birger Jarl, the husband of his daughter, Ingeborg Eriksdotter of Sweden. Birger took great care to secure the kingship for his own sons; the Dukes of Mecklenburg's claim to the Swedish throne became reality during a brief reign: Henry II's son Albert II, Duke of Mecklenburg, married a kinswoman, a Scandinavian heiress named Euphemia of Sweden and Norway. The couple's second son duke Albert III deposed his uncle from the Swedish throne, ascended as king. Margaret I of Denmark chose Eric of Pomerania as her heir. Eric descended from the elder brother of Albert III. Monarchs of the Kalmar union were all cognatic descendants of the House of Mecklenburg; the agnatic House of Mecklenburg, descended from Euphemia's youngest son Magnus I, Duke of Mecklenburg, continued to keep their claim to the throne, stirred the situation in Scandinavia.
The Kingdom of Norway was the only medieval Scandinavian realm whose kingship was hereditary, not elective. When Olav IV of Norway was young and his mother Margaret was regent, the Dukes of Mecklenburg advanced their claims; the Dukes of Mecklenburg's claim to the Norwegian throne was based on their descent from Euphemia of Sweden, granddaughter of Haakon V of Norway. When Olav IV died in 1387, Norway was under the regency of Margaret, she soon chose an heir, Eric of Pomerania, whose mother Maria of Mecklenburg had been Euphemia's eldest granddaughter. When Eric's nephew king Christopher died, after some hiatus another magnate, Christian VIII of Oldenburg, descended in the female line from Euphemia and the Mecklenburg family, was chosen as king of Norway in 1450, this time passing over his cousin and male-line rival, Duke Henry the Fat of Mecklenburg; the Dukes of Mecklenburg continued to regard themselves as the rightful heirs to the throne of Norway but they were unable to gain the kingdom from the Oldenburgs.
Around 1711, a treaty was signed between the Dukes of Mecklenburg and the Elector of Brandenburg through which the elector was recognized as the next heir of Mecklenburg after the male lines of the genealogical house of Mecklenburg. Thereby the electors kings of Prussia, regarded themselves as having become members of the House of Mecklenburg and started to use its titles, e.g. Duke of Mecklenburg, among their own titulary; the legality of that treaty concession has been, still is under discussion, because not all of the agnates of the House participated in the deed, at least one of them was underage. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the duchy was divided several times between agnates of the ducal house. Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Güstrow and Mecklenburg-Strelitz were typical partition principalities; until the late 18th century, most parts had returned to the senior branch, after which the patrimony was divided in two states until the end of monarchy in Germany: Mecklenburg-Schwerin Mecklenburg-StrelitzThese were elevated to grand duchies by recognition of the Congress of Vienna.
In 1918, less than a year before the elimination of the monarchy, the main line of Strelitz became extinct and the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin stepped in as regent, but succession unclarities were not solved until the small monarchies both were dissolved to republics. The House of Mecklenburg-Schwerin became extinct in the male line on 31 July 2001 with the death of Hereditary Grand Duke Frederick Francis of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, the eldest son and heir of the last reigning Grand Duke, Frederick Francis IV; the remaining members of the House of Mecklenburg-Schwerin are the daughters of Duke Christian Ludwig, the second son of Frederick Francis IV, the Duchesses Donata and Edwina. With the extinction of Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Strelitz is now the only surviving branch of the Grand Ducal house in the male line; the current head of this house is Duke of Mecklenburg. His grandf