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John VI Kantakouzenos

( Byzantine Emperor)

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Biography John VI Kantakouzenos
John VI Kantakouzenos - Byzantine emperor, who ruled in 1341-1354 he. Genus. app. 1295 g. + 15 July 1383

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John, endowed by nature a deep intellect and diverse talents, belonged to a very famous and wealthy family Cantacuzino. In his youth he was a great friend of Andronicus III Younger and gave him great support in money, troops and councils in the war with his grandfather Andronicus II. He was then a party to all its wars, and entertainment, and largely thanks to John Andronicus III's reign was not without some luster. After the death of Andronicus in 1341, Mr.. throne passed to his eight-year son John, who became regent Cantacuzenus. But no sooner had John to join their powers, as he had to defend itself from attacks of the old enemy, Alexei Apokavka who served as Navy Duque. Antagonizing Kantakouzene empress mother Anne of Savoy, the patriarch John and sinklitikov, Apokavk began to attack the regent, to dispute his right, and secretly preparing a coup. One night, his supporters burst into the homes of the nobility that supported Kantakouzene, smashed and looted. Many friends of the Regent and his mother were in prison, and his own estates confiscated to the treasury. However, he escaped the danger and took refuge in his hometown Didimotike. Here Oct. 26, 1341, Mr.. supporters proclaimed emperor Kantakouzene. But even making a rebellious act, Cantacuzenus tried to show their loyalty to the reigning house: ordered to proclaim the names of John Palaeologus and Anne of Savoy, before his name and the name of his wife.

. At the outbreak of war, then Cantacuzenus first time suffered setbacks
. Gathering the troops, he went up to Constantinople, but foreigners, mercenaries have changed him, and the soldiers ran. He went to the Thessalonians, suffered another defeat here, and in 1342, Mr.. with the remnants of the army took refuge in Serbia. King Stefan Dusan first had Cantacuzenus generous hospitality, but then began to lean toward his enemies. In the spring of 1343, Mr.. John the second time tried unsuccessfully to capture Salonika. Defeated, he fled to Serbia. At this time the Bulgarians besieged Didimotiku, where John's wife locked herself Empress Irene with the remnants of his supporters (Gibbon: 63). It seemed that the whole Kantakouzene and his party were killed, but then he came to the aid of a Turkish emir Umur. With a large fleet and army of mercenaries, he described the onslaught of the Bulgarians, and then backed offensive kantakuzinistov. By the autumn of John mastered many Thracian towns and castles. By the summer of 1345. in the hands of Anne of Savoy, and her party were only Constantinople, Thessaloniki and the peninsula Galliopoli. In June of that year killed Alex Apokavk. But Cantacuzenus lost the support of the Turks - his friend Umur, distracted by the war in Asia, left. John found another ally - the Turkish emir Orhan, and in 1346, Mr.. gave him his daughter Theodora (Dashkov: 'John Cantacuzenus'). After winning with the help of the Turks new victories, Cantacuzenus in early 1347, Mr.. approached Constantinople. Italian Fachchiolati new duk fleet, had been bribed by John. February 3, he ordered to open the Golden Gate and let kantakuzinistov in the capital. Anna of Savoy, yielding to the urgent requests of friends, has agreed to make peace. By its terms, John Palaeologus retained the throne, but in the next ten years, had to yield to the supreme authority Cantacuzenus. Anna has also agreed to the marriage of his son and daughter of his co-ruler. At the imperial throne were seated just two of the emperor and empress, three. Both sides promised to forget all the mutual resentment.

The coronation and the wedding was celebrated with unanimous joy and splendor, but also the joy and splendor were deceptive. During the recent unrest public treasures were plundered. In order to make ends meet, Anna was forced to sell not only the silver and the palace furniture, and even precious stones from the imperial crown. At the wedding banquet dishes were served in pewter and pottery, and missing stones in the crown were replaced with colored glass. The situation of the country was no better - it was weakened and decimated. In addition to the earlier casualties in 1348, Mr.. in the empire, as well as throughout Europe, an outbreak of plague, from which one third of the population died. How insignificant were then force the state, the events of next year. In 1349, Mr.. Genoese, who held since the first colony of Galata near Paleologos Constantinople, asked the emperor to give them for the construction of new fortifications for the hills north wall of Constantinople. John refused. Then the Genoese force seized the disputed land, surrounded by their fortifications, and then burned in the harbor Byzantine galleys. This was the beginning of the war. Cantacuzenus overlaid with prominent citizens of emergency taxes and the money ordered to build nine new galleries. But in the first battle of ro-Mei fled in panic from their ships, and the Genoese captured them without difficulty. Powerless to do anything, the emperor called for assistance of the Venetians and gave them all the trade privileges enjoyed before the Genoese. In the ensuing sea battle of the Genoese attacked the Venetian fleet defeat. Three months Cantacuzenus was supposed to conclude with the winners of the world, recognizing all of their seizures and trading privileges.

Meanwhile, John Palaeologus only until then was obedient to the authority of regent. In 1352, Mr.. he rebelled against Kantakouzene, tried to seize Adrianople, and then fled to Didimotiku. Cantacuzenus against him with the Turkish army (Gibbon: 63). The payment of salaries to new mercenaries went all funds of the treasury, church utensils, and even the money granted by Moscow Prince Simeon the Proud repairs of St. Sophia Cathedral. Pressed on land and at sea, Palaiologos fled to the island of Tenedos, under the protection of the Latins. Having made his case, the Turks seized on the European shore of the Hellespont fortress CSMP. In 1354, Mr.. they took Kalliopol. Cantacuzenus had with the Emir of negotiations on the return of the Thracian towns, but did not manage to bring them to the end (Dashkov: 'John Cantacuzenus'). In November 1354, Mr.. John Palaeologus on two Genoese galleys Francesca Gattiluzi with a detachment of 2000 people entered the harbor of Constantinople. When this small army entered the gates, the capital of the rebellion. Cantacuzino, by his own admission, was still able to successfully defend, but did not want to shed blood, voluntarily abdicated and took monastic vows as a monk under the name Joasaph. All the rest of his life thereafter was devoted to godly pursuits and scientific works. He left behind several theological works and 'history', which describes its own acts (Gibbon: 63).

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