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Plate 10 from Die Bulgaren in ihren historischen, ethnographischen und politischen Grenzen by Ishirkoff & Zlatarski Index no. 0048:0010
Bulgaria at the time of Samuel  —  Bulgarien zur Zeit des Samuel

The green-bordered text below is is the English version of the explanatory text, from the page facing the map. Another page on this site gives the full text in German, English, French, and Bulgarian.

10. – Bulgaria at the time of Samuel.

After the Byzantine Emperor John Zimiskes had conquered the eastern part of the Bulgarian Empire in the year 972, the Bulgarians not only maintained their independence in the western part, but they even succeeded in delivering the eastern part they had lost (with the exception of the Bulgarian part of Thracia), and in seizing Servia, nearly the whole of Albania, and a part of Thessaly. This happened under the warlike Czar Samuel (980-1014), who, during the whole of his reign fought against the Byzantine Emperor Basil II without interruption. The Bulgarian Empire in its greatest expansion (996) under Samuel, when he stood at the height of power, has been delineated on the map. But under the weak successors of Samuel the Bulgarians could not hold out the many-years wars against the mighty and energetic emperor Basil II, who at length succeeded in the year 1018 in subjecting the Bulgarians under his rule. By no means, however, did this subjection bear the stamp of servitude, for it took place "by virtue of treaty". This matter of fact Basil II himself renders prominent in his edict, according to which the Bulgarians maintained their right of autonomous government, their ecclesiastical independence, and the ngame of their country. Want of space, unfortunately, does not permit the reproduction of the "Military and Administrative Regulation for Bulgaria" edicted by Basil II at the time of its subjugation. According to it Bulgaria in spite of the division into 4 provinces, maintained its unity which found expression in the person of the "Stratigos of the Bulgarian Province"; he bore the title "Duke" or "Satrap of all Bulgaria", was looked upon as Vice-Emperor and Skopie (Ueskub) was his residence. This unity of the Bulgarian territory had also been ensured through the acknowledgment of the Bulgarian National Church in such boundaries as it had during the time of the Bulgarian Czar Peter, – by means of the treaty of 927.

Keywords: BulgariaSamuel

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