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    Han Tervel, son of Asparuh

    Han Tervel is the son of Asparuh. His birth year is unknown. According to the explicit instruction of the Bulgarian Khan's Register of Names, Tervel was of the Dulo family.

    Han Tervel

    For this reason, he is considered the son of Asparuh and his immediate successor. He ascended the throne in 700. The accounts of Han Tervel relate to Byzantium, its emperors, and its battles with Constantinople. The first information about Tervel dates back to 704 and is related to the Byzantine emperor Justinian the Second. In 705, Tervel's acquisitions were a territorial extension of Bulgaria. To the south of the Balkan Mountains, Tervel received the Zagore district - the present-day lands located between Sliven, Yambol and the Black Sea. After three years the peace between Bulgaria and Byzantium was broken. Justinian the Second started a war against Tervel. But without hesitation, Tervel attacked and destroyed the Roma troops. In 712 Tervel took advantage of the unstable situation in Constantinople and the heavy Bulgarian army penetrated deep into Byzantine territory. This instability of Byzantium forced Emperor Theodosius the Third to open peace talks. The peace treaty was concluded in 716. This treaty is a great victory for Tervel - Byzantium not only recognized its territorial benefits - the Zagore region, but also gave it new territories - the border passed through the Strandzha Mountain. In 717 - 718 Tervel's confidence, which grew with the victories, brought him for the third time to the walls of Constantinople. The deposed emperor Anastasius II was advised to seek help from the Bulgarian Khan Tervel. Tervel accepted him, promised him help, gave him troops and gold, but his campaign to return to Constantinople failed. That is the end of the testimony of Khan Tervel. According to the Bulgarian Khan's Directory, he ruled for 21 years. Therefore, his death was in 721.
    Contemporaries consider the events of 705 as an unforgettable triumph of Khan Tervel. This is also suggested in his seal: the rider who swoops against a fallen foe symbolically depicts the triumphant Khan Tervel over the fallen Emperor Justinian II at his feet.
    There is no doubt that the same idea is embedded in the relief of the Madara Horseman.

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