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The Beautiful City of Thessaloniki /2/

Thessaloniki is one of the most important shopping centers of Byzantium. The founders of the Cyril and Methodius Glagolitic were born in the town. In 1204, Thessaloniki was conquered by the Crusaders who participated in the Fourth Crusade and was proclaimed the capital of Thessaloniki Margraph. In 1207, Tsar Kaloyan was in front of Thessaloniki’s gates and was about to take over the city, but was betrayed by his wife, the Celgouba, and killed by Boril. In 1224 the city became the domain of the Epirus despotism. In 1235 Tsar Ivan Asen II subjugated the Epirus despotism and its territories became vassal of Bulgaria. After the death of Tsar Ivan Assen II, the Bulgarian state was weakened and in 1246 the Nicaean Empire joined Thessaloniki.

The Ottoman troops led by Hayredin Pasha conquered Salonika in April 1387 after a long siege. Soon the Turks returned the city to Byzantium. Later, in the invasions of the Ottoman Turks in the region, due to impossibility to defend Thessalonica, Manuel II Palaiologus handed it over to Venice in 1423. The city remained in Venetian hands until March 29, 1430, when it was captured by Sultan Murad II after an eight-year blockade of land. In 1492, after the persecution of Sephardic Jews in Spain, some of them settled in Thessaloniki. The city is becoming one of the largest Jewish centers not only in the Balkans.

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Written by Georgi Tsachev

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