Person:Basil II (1)

Basil II
b.0958
d.15 Dec 1025
Facts and Events
Name Basil II
Alt Name[1] Βασίλειος Β΄
Gender Male
Birth[1] 0958 House of Macedonians
Alt Birth[2] 959
Death[1] 15 Dec 1025
Reference Number[1] Q41833?


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Basil II (; – 15 December 1025), nicknamed the Bulgar Slayer, was a Byzantine Emperor from the Macedonian dynasty whose effective reign—the longest of any Byzantine monarch—lasted from 10 January 976 to 15 December 1025. He had been associated with the throne since 960 as a junior colleague to a succession of senior emperors: his father Romanos II (r. 959–963), his step-father Nikephoros II Phokas (r. 963–969), and John I Tzimiskes (r. 969–976). In addition to these emperors, Basil's influential great-uncle Basil Lekapenos held power for several decades until he was overthrown in 985. From 962, Basil II's brother Constantine, who succeeded him as Constantine VIII (r. 1025–1028), was nominal co-emperor.

The early years of Basil's reign were dominated by civil wars against two powerful generals from the Anatolian aristocracy; first Bardas Skleros and later Bardas Phokas, which ended shortly after Phokas' death and Skleros' submission in 989. Basil then oversaw the stabilization and expansion of the eastern frontier of the Byzantine Empire and the complete subjugation of the First Bulgarian Empire, its foremost European foe, after a prolonged struggle. Although the Byzantine Empire had made a truce with the Fatimid Caliphate in 987–988, Basil led a campaign against the Caliphate that ended with another truce in 1000. He also conducted a campaign against the Khazar Khaganate that gained the Byzantine Empire part of Crimea and a series of successful campaigns against the Kingdom of Georgia.

Despite near-constant warfare, Basil distinguished himself as an administrator, reducing the power of the great land-owning families who dominated the Empire's administration and military and filling its treasury. He left the Empire with its greatest expanse in four centuries. Although his successors were largely incapable rulers, the Empire flourished for decades after Basil's death. One of the most important decisions taken during his reign was to offer the hand of his sister Anna Porphyrogenita to Vladimir I of Kiev in exchange for military support, thus forming the Byzantine military unit known as the Varangian Guard. The marriage of Anna and Vladimir led to the Christianization of the Kievan Rus' and the incorporation of later successor nations of Kievan Rus' within the Byzantine cultural and religious tradition. Basil is seen as a Greek national hero but as a despised figure among Bulgarians.

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References
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Basil II, in Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia.
  2. BASILEOS, in Cawley, Charles. Medieval Lands: A prosopography of medieval European noble and royal families.