Christianization of Bulgaria

Christianization Of Bulgaria

Christianization of Bulgaria

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The Christianization of Bulgaria was the process by which 9th-century medieval Bulgaria converted to Christianity. It was influenced by the khan's shifting political alliances with the kingdom of the East Franks and the Byzantine Empire, as well as his reception by the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church. Because of Bulgaria's strategic position, both Roman Catholic European kingdoms and the Byzantine Empire wanted Bulgaria's people to practice their respective religions and be aligned with them politically. Christianization was considered a means of integrating Slavs into the region. After some overtures to each side, the khan aligned with Eastern Orthodox Christianity. Through them, he achieved his goal of gaining an independent Bulgarian national church and having an archbishop appointed to head it.


When Khan Boris began his reign in 852, the international situation was very complicated. The conflict with the Byzantine Empire for domination over the Slavic tribes in modern-day Macedonia and Thrace was still far from being resolved. In the middle Danube region, Bulgaria's interests crossed with those of the emerging kingdom of the East Franks and the principality of Great Moravia. It was about that period when Croatia emerged on the international scene, carrying its own ambitions and demands for territories in the region.

On a larger scale, the tensions between Constantinople and Rome were tightening. Both centres were competing to lead the Christianization...
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