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THE FIRST BULGARIAN-WALLACHIAN DIPLOMATIC MARRIAGE

Sashka Georgieva

Institute for Historical Studies

(Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)

Abstract: The article focuses on the first Bulgarian-Wallachian diplomatic marriage, which was concluded to cement a military political alliance between Bulgaria and the Wallachian voevode Ivanko Basarab. The interests of the allies were united by the presence of a common enemy – Hungary. Mihail Shishman at that time ruler of the Vidin Despotate was the main acting figure on Bulgarian part. The marriage was the result of his diplomatic efforts, which were also beneficial to the overlord Theodore Svetoslav. The alliance with the most powerful Wallachian voevode was designed to prevent Hungary to expand at the expense of the Trans-Danubian Bulgarian lands and in general the goal was achieved despite some losses in Severin. The author traces also Ivanko Basarab’s policy of manoeuvring between Hungary and Bulgaria that helped him to defend his interests, pressured by his powerful neighbours and eventually allowed him to start building his own independent state.

Keywords: Shishman, Basarab, Interdynastic Marriage, Medieval Hungary