Sevastokrator Boril
Faction Bulgarian Tsardom
Role Lord
Fief(s) Drastar

Sevastokrator Boril is a vassal of the Bulgarian Tsardom.

Historical Background Edit

Sevastokrator Boril is first mentioned in 1207, when he took the Bulgarian throne after the death of Tsar Kaloyan. His title before that is unknown, but considering he must have held considerable power to eventually win the battle for the throne, we have decided to give him the third-ranking title in the empire (after tsar and despot).

It is widely believed, thanks to romanticist historians and popular historical novels, that he was responsible for the assassination of Tsar Kaloyan before the walls of Thessaloniki in 1207. This is based on the fact that, as he took the throne, Boril eventually married Kaloyan's widow, a Cuman princess, thus legitimizing his claim to the throne. However, he faced considerable internal dissent, including the secession of two powerful nobles - Aleksii Slav, who allied himself with the Latins and received the title of despot, and Boril's very own brother, Strez, who went to join the Serbs. In addition, the underaged sons of the old Tsar Asen, the older brother of Tsar Kaloyan, fled the country, first to the Cumans and then to the Rus, which is often interpreted as a persecution of the usurper against the supposedly rightful heirs to the throne. Other modern analyses, however, suggest that he might have adopted Kaloyan's underaged son, Vitleem, and acted as his regent at least for several years, until he divorced his Cuman queen and married a niece of the Latin emperor.

Boril's foreign policy wasn't much successful either - he suffered a humiliating defeat by the Latins near Plovdiv in 1208, which further strengthened the internal dissent. The Bogomil heresy seems to have also been a thorn at his side, due to which he gathered a church council in 1211 (possibly in relation to the general anti-heretical policy of the Papacy, to which the Bulgarian church was still subservient since the unia with Rome in 1204), which condemned the heresy. Around this time Boril changed the direction of his external policy, concluding truces, alliances and even several royal marriages with his former enemies - he married his daughter to the Latin Emperor Henry of Flanders, he himself married Henry's niece (an unnamed daughter of his sister Yolanda, which was also sister-in-law of the king of Hungary, Andrew II, who was married to another of Yolanda's daughters) and he was planning to marry another of his daughters to the Hungarian Prince Bela IV.

In 1218, however, the eldest son of Tsar Asen, Tsar Ioan Asen II, returned to Bulgaria at the head of a band of Russian mercenaries. Many of the common people and the nobles came to his side and Boril was soon left only with the area of Tarnovgrad, where he was besieged and eventually captured, blinded and sent to live the remainder of his life in a monastery.

More information about him can be found on his Wikipedia page.

Game Info Edit

Family Edit

Family (Historical) Edit

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