Battle of Spercheios

Battle Of Spercheios

Military Conflict
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Battle of Spercheios

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The Battle of Spercheios (Bulgarian: битка при Сперхей, ) took place in 997 AD, on the shores of the river of the same name in present-day central Greece. It was fought between a Bulgarian army led by Tsar Samuil, that in the previous year had penetrated far south into Greece, and a Byzantine army under the command of Nikephoros Ouranos.Catherine Holmes, Basil II and the Governance of Empire (976-1025), Oxford University Press, 2005, ISBN 0199279683, pp. 163-165, 196 The Byzantine victory virtually destroyed the Bulgarian army, and stemmed its raids in Macedonia and southern Greece, heralding a reversal of Byzantine fortunes in the prolonged conflict. The major historical source on the battle comes from Greek historian John Skylitzes whose Synopsis of Histories (Σύνοψις Ἱστοριῶν) contains a biography of the then reigning Eastern Roman Emperor, Basil II.

Origins of the conflict

After the major success of the Bulgarians in the Battle of the Gates of Trajan in 986, Byzantium descended into a civil war, further exacerbated by the conflict with the Fatimids in Syria. Tsar Samuil took advantage of the situation and conquered virtually the whole of the Balkan Peninsula, excluding the parts of Thrace closest to Constantinople, and southern Greece.Стоименов, Д., Временна византийска военна администрация в българските земи 971-987/989 г.,...
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