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ΒΥΖΑΝΤΙΟ ΚΑΙ ΣΕΡΒΟΙ: ΤΟ ΖΗΤΗΜΑ ΤΩΝ ΕΚΣΤΡΑΤΕΙΩΝ ΤΟΥ ΙΩΑΝΝΗ Β΄ ΚΟΜΝΗΝΟΥ ΕΝΑΝΤΙΟΝ ΤΩΝ ΣΕΡΒΩΝ

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ΑΓΓΕΛΙΚΗ ΠΑΠΑΓΕΩΡΓΙΟΥ
ΑΓΓΕΛΙΚΗ ΠΑΠΑΓΕΩΡΓΙΟΥ

Abstract


The aim of this paper is to examine the number of campaigns conducted against the Serbs by John II Komnenos (1118-1143). Until recently, scholars believed that there was only one campaign against the Serbs, because they failed to take into account a third source, distinct from Niketas Choniates and Ioannes Kinnamos, that of the Chronicle of the Priest of Dioclea. After examining all three sources, I reached the conclusion that there were actually two campaigns. The other problem pertaining to the campaigns is chronology. Ferdinand Chalandon, who was the only one to support the theory of two campaigns, was wrong on the matter of their chronology. He believed that Choniates was mistaken and adopted Kinnamos’ chronology (1129-1130), placing the second campaign in 1137. I have tried to show that both Byzantine historians were correct in their chronology, as they refer to two separate campaigns, so the correct chronology would be 1122 for the first and 1129 for the second.

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In this year… There also arrived the emissaries sent by Karoulos and Pope Leo to the most pious Irene asking her to marry Karoulos and so unite the eastern and western parts.

C. Mango – R. Scott, The Chronicle of Theophanes Confessor, Oxford 1997, p. 654

 

This “Union” of Byzantine East and Latin West might possibly have been realized, if all had gone well with the betrothal of Empress Irene the Athenian to the Frankish king Charles the Great, which the royal and papal emissaries from the West seem to have attempted to conclude in 802. However, the discussions with these emissaries merely precipitated the overthrow of Irene…

Aik. Christofilopoulou, Byzantine History, v. II1 (610-847), Athens 1984, p. 150