East Central Europe 979 CE

Central Europe has experienced great upheavals with the coming of the Magyars.

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What is happening in East Central Europe in 979CE

The Avars submitted to Charlemagne, but their place as the dominant power in this region was taken by the Moravians. These were a Slav group, who organized themselves into a formidable state – known to history as Greater Moravia – over whom the Franks were able to exercise only a loose suzerainty. In the 860s and 870s, two Byzantine monks, Cyril and Methodius, brought Christianity to the Moravian lands. Although hailing from the Constantinople, the centre of the Orthodox Church, their missionary work in fact paved the way for the dominance of the Roman Church, at least in this region.

The Moravians expanded their own control over a large territory, until their power was in turn destroyed by the Magyars. These were a horde of steppe peoples who, having been defeated by another group, the Patzinaks, on the river Don in 892, migrated to the central Hungarian plains. There they settled, driving out the Bulgars. From their base there they struck deep into western Europe on several occasions, spreading fear and destruction wherever they went. In 955, however, they were severely defeated by the German king Otto I at the battle of Lechfield.

In the wake of this victory, Otto re-founds the Frankish Empire, which will become known to European history as the Hole Roman Empire.

With the destruction of the Greater Moravian kingdom, one of their leading vassals, the prince of Bohemia, placed himself under the protection and suzerainty of the king of Germany.

To the north, Poland has been organized as a Christian principality under Miesko I (963-992), and is a dependent ally of the East Frankish emperor.

Next map, Central Europe in 1215

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