26 March 2007

Moldavia in the middle-ages

Moldavia in the 15th century - a brief history

Moldavia, the eastern of the three Romanian countries knew in the XIV-th century the same fights for power, the same civil war as Wallachia did. Its name came from Moldova River, flowing in the North of the country, where its first capital was lying. The country was formed of two big regions: The upper country and the south country (the down country). At the very beginning the two principalities were called Wallachia (= the Romanians’ Country), but then, to differentiate it from the other country it was called “RussoWallachia” or MauroWallachia.

The name Moldova is the one that rests since the end of the 14th century, when the two countries: the North one and the South one join together. The country was independent from 1359, when Bogdan, a Romanian from Maramures area settle the throne and give his name to the dynasty. In 1370 Ludwig of Anjou, Hungarian King, gets elected also King of Poland. The union Hungary-Poland determines prince Peter I to swear fidelity to Ladislav Jagellon _(Jogaila) . Despite the efforts of Hungarian kings to dominate Moldavia it remains vassal of Poland for many years.

The long reign of Alexander the Good, allowed Moldavia to develop an important role in Europe. The commercial way linking Persia with China was crossing Moldavia from South to North and brought Moldavia the economic prosperity.

In 1428 the country rich its maximum expansion, 93.000 sq. km, much bigger than Wallachia. It was lying from the Eastern Carpathians to Nister and from the Black Sea to Galitia. After Alexander died, a quarter of a century of internal fights and civil wars followed, from 1432 to 1457.

In 1448 John Hunyadi set Peter II on the Moldavian throne, to stop the politic instability in Moldavia (he wanted Moldova to be a powerful country, capable of defending itself against the Turks, so defending also Hungary). The Hungarians project was to guarantee the fidelity of the Romanian Countries Wallachia and Moldavia, envisaging the expedition against the Turks.

Peter II dies on October 10th 1448 and on the throne is set Alexandrel, son of Ilia (a son of Alexander the Good). In November-December 1448 Vlad Dracula comes to Moldavian Court after being thrown from the Wallachian throne by Vladislav II. Presumably his step-mother is here, to her relatives. Is here that Vlad rests for three years, despite the fact that Alexandrel is being taken the throne in October 1449. The new prince, Bogdan II was son of jupân Bogdan, brother of Alexander the Good.

If Alexandru was sustained by the Poland king, Bogdan II was looking for politically sustain from Hunyadi. Therefore at February, 11, 1450 he established a fidelity and alliance treaty with John Hunyadi (Iancu de Hunedoara). Bogdan obliged to act with Hunyadi “as a son with his father”, obtaining military help, the right to exile, etc.
Poland attacks Moldavia twice in 1450 in March and September but is defeated. Is supposed Vlad Dracula participates in the battles and is since that period his friendship with Stefan, son of Bogdan II.

On October, 15th, 1451, Bogdan is taken from his bed and cut his head down by a small troop lead by Petru Aron, challenger to the throne, helped by the Poland’s king. Bogdan’s widow runs to Transylvania, together with the two sons, to seek for help near Hunyadi. Vlad goes with her but does not present in front of Iancu de Hunedoara (Hunyadi) , the killer of his father.
He established in Braşov or Sighișoara, where his father Vlad Dracul has been welcomed.

Vlad III in Transylvania, 1451.

In 1456 Dracula obtains the throne again for his second and longest reign

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