- Feb 7, 2008
A Genealogy of Nazaryan EmperorsBasileus Andres I Nazaryan (1149-1168)
By KhanXLT, Georgia
By KhanXLT, Georgia
By all accounts the forgotten second son of Despot Artavazd, he was always in the shadows of his older brother Konstantinos, who had been groomed from birth to be the new Emperor. Andres was doomed to be sent off to be lord of a far distant castle in Syria. Fortunately for him, his brother died of an illness before he could claim his mother's throne. The responsibility to rule would now be thrust onto Andres.
The new Emperor had inherited an Empire at a crossroads. Under his mother, the Byzantine Empire maintained, but did not prosper. It faced heathens at all sides and no one expected much from him, some even openly spoke of rebellion, which hadn't been a concern since his Grandfather led the last revolt over 40 years ago. After taking stock of his assets, he made a decision that would cement his name in history, and ensure that the Nazaryans would continue to sit on the throne for generations to come.
He invited newly crowned Prince Mayor Ramonos of Tauracia and Doux Isidoros of Athens to Constantinople to obtain their help in a total reconstruction of the Byzantine Empire. This meeting would be the birth of a reinvigorated Theme System, which had been in decline since the reign of Nikephoras II Phokas almost 200 years ago. This new Theme system took cues strongly from the Feudal system which had been prevalent in the Catholic Kingdoms to the west. In effect it created three districts in the current Empire, a Western District, a Northern District, and a Eastern District. The North and the West would be under the suzerainty of the East, but were free to pursue their own affairs within their own themes.
The effects of the New Theme System was immediate, over the next 15 years Byzantine expanded explosively in three directions. North through the Tengri Hordes thanks to mercenary armies of Prince Mayor Ramonos and his Northern Theme. South through the Shia Muslims thanks to the now Despot Isidoros of the Western Theme, and East, with the Imperial Army backed by the manpower of Andres’s Eastern Theme. At the Death of Andres in the year 1168, the Byzantine Empire was the largest it would be in the middle ages, but his son would go on to lose the Northern Theme in its entirety.