Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Comitopuli dynasty (Bulgarian: Династията на комитопулите) was the last royal dynasty in the First Bulgarian Empire, ruling from ca. 976 until the fall of Bulgaria under Byzantine rule in 1018. The actual name of the dynasty is not known, “Comitopuli” is merely the nickname which is used by Byzantine historians to address rulers from the dynasty as its founder, boyar Nikola, was a “comita” (governor) of the region of Sredetz (the present-day capital of Bulgaria, Sofia).
In view of his position and status, comita Nikola is most likely to have been a member of the Slavonized Bulgar aristocracy and at least distantly related to the royal family of Tsar Peter I. According to other theories, the dynasty was of Slavic, or even Armenian or Vlach origin. In 969 AD and following the Russian conquest of northwestern Bulgaria, comita Nikola assumed control of the Bulgarian lands west of the Iskar . By the time of the Byzantine conquest of Preslav and the dethronement of Tsar Boris II in 972, Nikola had been killed and the rule assumed by his four sons, David, Aaron, Moses, and Samuil. David led the defence of southwestern Bulgaria and resided in Prespa, Moses of southeastern Bulgaria residing in Strumica , Aaron ruled over the region of Sredetz, whereas Samuil was in charge of northern Bulgaria with the town of Bdin (Vidin).
Both David and Moses lost their lives early – David was murdered by wandering Vlachs, whereas Moses died during the siege of Serres. A conflict broke out between Samuil and Aaron as the latter grew more and more pro-Byzantine and on June 14, 976 Aaron was executed near Dupnitza . Later the same year, the dethroned Boris II and his brother, Roman , managed to escape from captivity in Constantinople and reached the borders of Bulgaria. Boris II was, however, killed by mistake by the border guards. As a result, it was Roman who was crowned as Bulgarian Tsar although – most certainly – the real power and the control of the army lay in the hands of Samuil. It was not until the death of Roman in 997 that Samuil officially was crowned as Tsar in the absence of any other direct heirs to the throne.
After the death of Samuil in 1014, the crown passed on to his son, Gavril Radomir (1014-1015). In 1015, he was murdered by his first cousin and son of Aaron, Ivan Vladislav . With his own death in 1018, both the First Bulgarian Empire and the reign of the Comitopuli dynasty came to an end.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details