Publisher description for Cumans and Tatars : oriental military in the pre-Ottoman Balkans, 1185-1365 / Istvan Vasary.


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The Cumans and the Tatars were nomadic warriors of the Eurasian steppe who exerted an enduring impact on the medieval Balkans. With this work, István Vásáry presents the first extensive examination of their history from 1186 to the 1360s. The basic instrument of Cuman and Tatar political success was military force, which none of the warring Balkan factions could resist. As a consequence, groups of the Cumans and the Tatars settled and mingled with the local population in various regions of the Balkans. The Cumans were the founders of three successive Bulgarian dynasties (Asenids, Terterids, and Shishmanids), and the Wallachian dynasty (Basarabids). They also played an active role in Byzantium, Hungary, and Serbia with Cuman immigrants being integrated into each country's elite. This book also explores how the prevailing political anarchy of the Balkans in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries made it ripe for the Ottoman conquest.


Library of Congress subject headings for this publication:
Kipchak (Turkic people) -- Balkan Peninsula.
Tatars -- Balkan Peninsula.
Balkan Peninsula -- Civilization.