Battle of Salonica (1014)


Battle of Salonica (1014)

Infobox Military Conflict
conflict=Battle of Salonica


caption=
partof=the Byzantine-Bulgarian Wars
date=July, 1014
place=Thessaloniki, Greece
result=Byzantine victory
combatant1=Bulgarian Empire
combatant2=Byzantine Empire
commander1=Nestoritsa
commander2=Theophylactus Botaniates| strength1=Unknown
strength2=Unknown
casualties1=Heavy
casualties2=Unknown

The battle of Salonica ( _bg. Битка при Солун) was fought between the Bulgarian and the Byzantine Empires in the summer of 1014 near the city of Thessaloniki in contemporary northern Greece. The Bulgarian army under the command of Nestoritsa was defeated by the Byzantines led by the governor of Salonica Theophylactus Botaniates and it was unable to divert the main Byzantine forces who were attacking the Bulgarian ramparts between the Belasitsa and Ograzhden mountains.

Prelude

In the summer of 1014 the Byzantine Emperor Basil II launched his annual campaign against Bulgaria. From Western Thrace via Serres he reached the valley of the Strumeshnitsa river where his troops were halted by a thick palisade guarded by an army under the personal command of Samuil.Ангелов/Чолпанов, Българска военна история през средновековието (Х-ХV век), с. 55] . To divert the attention of the enemy the Bulgarian Emperor sent a large force under his general Nestoritsa to the south to attack the second largest city of the Byzantine Empire, Thessaloniki.Николов, Централизъм и регионализъм в ранносредновековна България, с. 146]

The battle

Several days later Nestoritsa reached the vicinity of Solun. On the fields to the west of the cityНиколов, Централизъм и регионализъм в ранносредновековна България, с. 146] or according to other historians near the river of GalikАнгелов/Чолпанов, Българска военна история през средновековието (Х-ХV век), с. 55] it was confronted by a strong army led by the doux (governor) of Thessaloniki Theophylactus Botaniates and his son Micheal. The son of the governor charged the Bulgarians but was surrounded. In the fierce battle there the Bulgarians had many casualties and pulled back under the cover of archers. A second attack of Michael and the Byzantine cavalry resulted in a complete defeat for Nestoritsa's troops and they fled. [That is the way the battle was fought according to the Byzantine historian "Michael Ataliates", quoted in details in "В. Златарски", "История на българската държава през средните векове", том 1, част 2, с. 732-733 (с. [http://www.promacedonia.org/vz1b/vz1b_6_3.html 693-694] in the electronic version of the 1971 edition).] The victorious Byzantines captured many soldiers.Подбрани извори за българската история, Том II: Българските държави и българите през средновековието, с. 66] After he had secured Solun, Botaniates join Basil's army at Belasitsa. [Пириватрич, Самуиловата държава, с. 136]

Later in that summer Botaniates and his army were defeated in the gorges to the south of Strumitsa and he perished in the battle killed personally by Samuil's son Gavril Radomir. [Пириватрич, Самуиловата държава, с. 137] Подбрани извори за българската история, Том II: Българските държави и българите през средновековието, с. 66] Nestoritsa who survived the defeat surrendered to Basil II four years later after the Byzantine Emperor entered the capital of Bulgaria Ohrid in 1018. [Пириватрич, Самуиловата държава, с. 143] [Подбрани извори за българската история, Том II: Българските държави и българите през средновековието, с. 69]

Sources

*Златарски, Васил, "История на българската държава през средните векове", том 1, част 2, Академично издателство "Марин Дринов", София 1994, ISBN 954-430-299-9
*Ангелов, Димитър, и Борис Чолпанов, "Българска военна история през средновековието (Х-ХV век)", Издателство на Българската академия на науките, София 1994, ISBN 954-430-200-X
*Николов, Георги, "Централизъм и регионализъм в ранносредновековна България (края на VІІ - началото на ХІ в.)", Академично издателство "Марин Дринов", София 2005, ISBN 954-430-787-7
*Пириватрич, Сърджан, "Самуиловата държава. Обхват и характер", Изд. група "АГАТА-А", София 2000, ISBN 954-540-020-X
* Подбрани извори за българската история, Том II: Българските държави и българите през Средновековието, Изд. "ТАНГРА ТанНакРа ИК", София 2004, ISBN 954-9942-40-6

Footnotes


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