Thomas the Slav

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Thomas the Slav

Post  lynk2510 on Wed Nov 30, 2011 5:43 am

Thomas the Slav (Greek: Θωμᾶς; c. 760 October 823 AD) was a 9th-century Byzantine military commander, most notable for leading a wide-scale revolt against Emperor Michael II the Amorian (ruled 820829) in 820823.

An army officer of Slavic origin from the Pontus region (now north-eastern Turkey), Thomas rose to prominence, along with the future emperors Michael II and Leo V the Armenian (r. 813820), under the protection of general Bardanes Tourkos. After Bardanes's failed rebellion in 803, Thomas fell into obscurity until Leo V's rise to the throne, when Thomas was raised to a senior military command. After the murder of Leo and usurpation of the throne by Michael the Amorian, Thomas revolted, claiming the throne for himself. Thomas quickly secured support from most of the themes (provinces) and troops in Asia Minor, and concluded an alliance with the Abbasid Caliphate. After winning over the maritime themes and their ships, he sailed with his army to besiege Constantinople. Michael II called for help from the Bulgarian ruler Omurtag, whose troops attacked Thomas's army. Although repelled, the Bulgarians inflicted heavy casualties on Thomas's men, who broke and fled when Michael took to the field a few months later. Thomas sought refuge in Arcadiopolis, where he was soon seized by Michael's troops and executed.
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