A Fragment of Unknown Moldavian Chronicle: Prince Stephan the Great in 1451–1460 Cover Image
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Неопубликованный фрагмент из неизвестной Молдавской летописи. Господарь Стефан Великий в 1451–1460 гг.
A Fragment of Unknown Moldavian Chronicle: Prince Stephan the Great in 1451–1460

Author(s): Alexandr N. Nikitich
Subject(s): History, Middle Ages, 15th Century
Published by: Издательский дом Stratum, Университет «Высшая антропологическая школа»

Summary/Abstract: The article tells about discovery of a fragment of an unknown Moldavian chronograph, which contains previously unpublished facts of Moldavian Prince Stephan the Great’s life. In 1986, a Moldavian chronograph of late 18 c. was found in the Central Scientific library of the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, in Kiev. This dating of the manuscript, however, is doubtful. The chronograph is compiled by an anonymous author in form of a textbook of ancient history and covers the period from creation of the world till 1624. This manuscript is much larger in volume and richer in contents than the already known chronograph by Constantine Manassia, which covers the events from creation of the world till 1417, and the Universal chronograph by Mikhail Mox, which extends to 1489.In the chapter “On seizure of Tsargrad” the author narrates some previously unknown facts of young ruler Stephan’s life in 1451 – 1460. The cited fragment tells that in 1451, when his father Bogdan, Prince of Moldova, was murdered, Stephan was 22 year old. Hence, Stephan was born in 1429 and died at the age of 75. This date is more acceptable and reliable as it is documentarily proved. Once Stephan’s year of birth is identified, it enables to determine the year of birth of his first son Alexander, who thus must have been born in 1450-1451. As it is known from the existing documentary sources, in 1476 and 1481 Alexander stood close to his father in cruel battles with the Turks. If he were born in 1464 by Eudokia from Kiev, as some researchers hypothetically ascertain, then in 1476 he could be only 12 year old, while this contradicts with the wall inscription in the church in Războieni, dictated by Stephan himself, telling about Alexander’s participation in the battle with the Turks.Absolutely new and quite interesting are the testimonies about Stephan’s attempt to help Byzantine Emperor Constantine during the siege of Constantinople by the Turkish Sultan Mehmed. However, the hetman Shendrea and Moldavian boyars who accompanied Stephan realized that their army was too small to stand against large Turkish forces and they convinced Stephan to turn back halfway. The anonymous author of the discovered chronograph ends the quotation with the following words: «… here I wrote but briefly, only what was necessary to let people know that Stephan set off to Tsargrad to help the Greeks but was stopped by a group of Moldavian boyars, and there probably was the Lord’s will too for Tsargrad to be taken from the Greeks. So Stephan returned as you heard.»This discovery of a fragment of the previously unknown Moldavian chronicle and its publication will enable the researchers to elucidate many blank spots in the past of Moldavia within 1451 – 1460, including some new facts of Stephan the Great’s life.

  • Issue Year: 2004
  • Issue No: 6
  • Page Range: 63-95
  • Page Count: 33
  • Language: Romanian, Russian