The Dardanian Conflict
In 1076, after The Byzantine armies, one led by the Emperor and the second led by a trusted veteran and distant nephew of the basielos himself, conquered a region called Dardanian a brutal and bloody war erupted between two of the biggest European kingdoms.
Operating south of the Hungarian border the Byzantines were pushing their luck; after two years of relatively easy campaigning in the southern region of modern day Romania the Hungarians claimed domain over a river crossing on the Danube river, the crossing was on the Hungarians southern flank and the King of Hungary (also a prince of a Slavic tribe which was brutally suppressed by the Byzantines after a revolt in the Getae region) saw this point as a weakness in his border, with tensions building he levied an army and declared the region his own.
Within seven months a steady supply of troops for both sides had been building up on the shared borders.
Outbreak of Hostilities
The Byzantines struck first, marching into modern day Romania, at the head of the marching army was Emperor Dumas, shouting to his men that great wealth lay in the mountains and that “The Hungarians are but Slavs in clever disguise and are little less then Pagans.” These statements, especially the first, indicate a more economic factor behind the aggressive action, the previous years had seen the desertion of Asia Minor.
Dumas and his 20 000 strong army marched north and immediately laid siege to the castle of Gyulafehervar, catching the Hungarian King by surprise (who was some eight days march away).
The second Byzantine General involved in the conflict was Alexander Koumas, a successful General in the various wars with the Muslims of the east and veteran of the Slavic wars (a period of tribal revolts in the Balkan regions and attacks upon Greek towns by the Slavs from the Bulgaria and Bosnia regions). His army of 40 000 was marching on the small town of Varad, which would by a temporary field camp for his army during the campaign; although King Hugo had left the river crossing two days earlier he had left a small Slavic contingent under the command of Captain Bojinov.
Koumas fought his way across the bridge and smashed into the 5000 strong Slavic war band, even though the encounter had lasted a mere 30 minutes he had LOST over 900 men and suffered a further 1100 wounded; Captain Bojinov was killed in the fighting and his army routed and merged back into the countryside.
After a week of hard marching Alexander Koumas arrived at Varad, sending his representatives to the Keep of the village they returned claiming no one was present, it appeared Varad was deserted.
They marched down a muddy slope; the September rain was “beating down upon us, telling us to turn back” according to the Byzantine General.
As soon as they made it down into the village they were ambushed, Hungarian foot knights appeared from mud houses and pulled riders off horses and hacked at the exposed flanks of the startled infantry of Byzantium.
Slavic warriors and Horse archers rained missiles down into the village, men at arms and sergeants, even peasants, charged through the muddy lanes at them. The fighting went on for three bloody brutal suppressing hours before the Hungarian army (30 000 strong) withdrew, leaving a bewildered and tiered Byzantine army in tatters.
Some Hungarian historians claim that Koumas lost 20 000 men in the fighting whilst Byzantine historians claim a loss of 15 000. The Hungarians however lost as little as 7000 in comparison with the desolated Byzantine forces.
When news reached the basielos he was preparing for the final encounter of the Dardanian Conflicts, the battle of Gyulafehervar.
His forces had been surrounded by the Hungarians, his small force of 20 000 compared to the 50 000 of King Hugo, Dumas led his troops onto a hill. When the battle began he sent his horse archers (members of allied Slavic Tribes and refugees from Asia Minor) to harass the enemy, a large cavalry action erupted and both Emperor Dumas and King Hugo had little cavalry free.
The Hungarians marched up the hill and met the Byzantine infantry. Whilst the infantry were engaged he signalled for his trebuchets and catapults to be moved forward, in what is now an infamous event Dumas charged with his body guards into the flank of the infantry, Hugo hoping to panic the enemy infantry fired into the mass of bodies, a large boulder smashed through the Emperors bodyguards, he was dismounted and trapped beneath his horse, his legs crushed he fended away attacking blows as best as he could but was eventually hacked to death, after an hour or so of fighting King Hugo joined the fray, he charged forward against the remaining bodyguards of the now deceased Dumas.
The Byzantines managed to hold the Hungarians at bay before their cavalry broke free and charged into the rear of the zealous Hungarians. King Hugo and his reaming follows sounded the retreat.
The Treaty of Wien
After the battle a captured Hungarian Noble identified the body of King Hugo; the corpse was stripped down and paraded through the streets of Gyulafehervar. The head was removed from the body and sent to the royal court in Szekesfehervar.
The body of Emperor Dumas was found some time later. His body was given a respectable Christian burial, something more then the body of King Hugo received.
The citizens of Gyulafehervar were found guilty of conspiring against the Byzantine Empire and crimes against Christianity, with the disapproval of the new emperor of Constantinople 2346 citizens were executed.
The Hungarian Prince sent a diplomat to negotiate a truce. In 1079 the new Emperor (Emperor Nikolas) and the new King (King Hugo II) met in the neutral town of Wien, were the Holy Roman Empire held two weeks of meetings between the two warring nations.
On February the 4th 1079 the treaty of Wien was agreed. The Hungarians would give up all territory west of a small Castle called Oduba (effectively leaving Hungary with modern day Austria), The Byzantines would have a monopoly on there trade, they would have too pay 1000 gold pieces every 6 months for fifty years as a tribute. All map information and subterfuge information they had would now become in possession of the Byzantines. In return the Emperor of Constantinople declares no aggressive military action will be take against the Hungarians unless provoked, he would reduce tax’s for all Hungarians living under his rule and the Byzantine treasury would give 10 000 gold pieces as a loan to help rebuild the Hungarian economy after the costly war.
the new borders
theres bound to be lots of mistakes, so if there are any niggling you, just tell me via this thread, thank you!