1206, Bela born in Magyar [Hungary], d/o 47277590. Andrew II of Hungary & 94555256. Gertrude of Meran.
9/24/1213, Bela’s mother, Queen Gertrude, murdered while King Andrew was on a campaign in Galicia.
1219-20, Maria Laskarina born in Nicea, d/o 94555258. Theodore I Lascaris of Nicaea & 94555259. Marie de Courtenay.
1222, Maria’s father died.
9/1222, Maria’s mother died.
1222, Bela’s father issued the Golden Bull, the basis for the Hungarian constitution. [Similarities indicate the framers of the Bull had knowledge of the Magna Carta of England. The Primate of Hungary visited Stephen Langton, who drafted the Magna Carta, at Canterbury in 1220.] Bela did not approve of this document.
1227, Genghis Khan died. He had arranged to divide his kingdoms, the largest going to Ogedei Khan the “Great Khan”. His son Batu Khan the “Firm” of the Blue Horde launched an invasion of Russia, Hungary and Poland.
1227, Cumans were permitted to enter Hungary and Bela took the title King of the Cumans.
1235, Two Dominican monks, Julian and Bernard, had been in seach of “ancient Hungary”. Bernard died on the journey, but Julian returned with news of an approaching peril, the Mongols [aka Tatars, with an army of possibly 130,000.]
9/21/1235, Bela’s father died.
10/14/1235 in Esztergom, Bela crowned king of Hungary. Bela’s initial concern was the consolidation of his nobles under his power, imprisoning several who did not support his rule. [Mikhail, prince of Chenigov, used this opportunity to occupy Galicia.] (S) Mikhail, Prince of Chernigov; Dimnik, 1981, P97.
1236, Bela supported Daniil Romanovich in his attacks on Mikhail, prince of Chenigov, in Galicia. [Daniil had fled to Hungary in 1235.]
11/1237, The Mongols besieged Ryazan [Russia] and destroyed the city.
2/7/1238, The Russian capital of Vladimir-Suzdal was captured and burnt by the Mongols. Batu Khan divided his armies and began ransacking Russian cities.
1238, Bela granted privileges to the city of Trnava.
[––Bela & Maria––]
By 1238, Bela married Maria.
3/2/1239, Bela authorized more Kumans, fleeing from the Mongols, to enter Hungary, led by a chief named Koten. Kotony asked to settle in Hungary, where he would help defend against a common foe. Bela assented.
1239, Koten, chief of the Kuman, baptized.
By 1240, Batu Khan sent more than 5 messengers to Bela who never returned [demanding the return of the Cumans and threatening Bela.]
1240, Knowing that the Mongols were getting close, Bela solicited aid from the Pope, the Germans, and other neighboring monarchs. Only Frederick, duke of Austria, pledged support. Defensively, Bela blockaded the Carpathian passes and sent forces to his eastern frontier. [To impress on his people the danger, Bela ordered blood-stained swords to be carried by his messengers.] The Mongols easily defeated Bela’s eastern forces, and also sent an army into Poland, and up the Danube, to cut off support for Hungary from western Europe.
12/6/1240, The Mongols captured Kiev, Russia.
1241, Bela sent Maria and their son to the fortress of Hainburg [in present day Bratislava, 20 mi. east of ViennaSlavonia.] Bela crossed the Danube and encamped near Pest.
1241, Koten, chief of the Kuman, assassinated after a captured Mongol turned out to be a Cuman. [The Cumans were a very large people covering a vast expanse in Russia.] Many Kumans then fled towards the lower Danube to Bulgaria.
4/1241, Bela, with a force of 50-60 thousand, suprised Batu with an attack. Bela’s mounted and armored knights were superior in small-engagement tactics. Batu retreated to more advantageous ground. [Where he stopped, Batu had the advantage of high ground for his encampment, with Bela encamped on an open plain. They attacked at night, surrounding the forces of Bela.]
4/11/1241, Bela defeated by the Mongols at the battle of Mohi in Austria. Bela and his family fled to Trau, Dalmatia, pursued by Mongols under command of Khadan. [They had the help of Duke Frederick, who was ceded the counties of Monson, Sopron and Vas. Bela’s younger brother Coloman died from wounds sustained in the battle.]
5/1241, Bela again appealed unsuccessfully to Pope Gregory IX and Emperor Frederick II.
12/1241, The Mongols received news of the death of their Great Khan Ogotaj.
2/1242, Crossing the Danube, the Mongols were unsuccessful in their attacks on fortified cities in Germany. A month later Batu left Hungary, abandoning his plans to invade Germany. [Batu settled on the Volga in Russia, died 1256.]
5/1242, Bela returned to Hungary; which had been devastated. [Bela arranged for food from other countries, reconstruction of towns with walls, and the building of castles – which the Mogols were unsuccessful in capturing. Bela encourage immigration, and many were returning Kumans.]
6/7/1243, Bela granted privileges to the Spis Lancers.
1244, Bela attacked Bosnia.
1245, Bela’s son Stephen crowned as a Junior King, given Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia.
1246, Bela concluded a peace agreement with duke Danilo of Galicia.
1246, Bela reclaimed the counties he had given up to the Duke of Austria in 1241.
6/15/1246, Bela’s forces repelled those of attacking Frederick of Babenberg [Duke of Austria] at the Leitha river, killing Frederick [and ending his line of succession. Bela had a claim to the inheritance.]
1247, Bela gave the Knights of St. John the southeastern borderlands in exchange for their supplying armored calvary and the building of defensive fortresses.
9/2/1248, Bela granted a charter of privileges on Nitra.
1248, Bela issued a document stating “it is the power of the king that demands that he increase, not minimize his grants.”
4/13/1249, Bela granted property and privileges to persons from Sena.
1250, Bela elevated royal soldiers, free owners of small estates willing to serve under the king’s command, to nobility.
1250, Bela attacked Styria, formerly controlled by Frederick of Babenberg.
6/15/1251, Bela established the Premonstratensian monastery in Klastor pod Znievom.
1253, Bela attacked Bosnia on succession of Ottocar II. Ottocar agreed to let Bela control Styria. (S) Rise of the Medieval World, Schulman, 2002, P331.
1254, Bela and Otakar Premysl, after 4 years of war, divided the disputed provences; Bela receiving Styria. (S) A Short Hisory of Austria-Hungary, Steed, 1914, P4.
1257, Bela ceded son Stephen the government of Transylvania when Stephen threatened war.
6/12/1257, Bela restored priviliges on serfs of Liptov and Turiec who had fled from excessive burdens.
1258, Bela appointed son Stephen as Duke of Styria.
7/1260, Ottokar, offered the throne of Styria by its subjects that did not like the rule of Stephen, defeated the Hungarian forces.
1261, Son Stephen joined with Bela in unsuccessfully attacking Bulgaria.
3/1261, Bela recognized Ottakar as duke of Styria.
1262 in Pozsony, By agreement with Bela, son Stephen took control of the kingdom east of the Danube.
1264, At war with Stephen, Bela captured his wife and son; and pushed Stephen into Transylvania.
3/1265, Stephen defeated Bela’s army at the battle of Isaszeg.
1265, Bela reconfirmed noble priviledges, returned noble’s lands used as forts, and created county courts with enforcement powers. Each count was obliged to send deputies to a royal legislative assembly.
3/23/1266, Stephen and Bela comfirmed the 1262 peace agreement in the convent of the Blessed Virgin on Rabbit’s Island.
1267, Stephen and Bela held a assembly of nobles and prelates of the Kingdom of Hungary at Esztergom.
5/3/1270, Bela died, son Stephan succeeding; buried at the Franciscan friary of Esztergom.
(S) Slovak History, Bartl, 2002. (S) The Realm of St. Stephen, Engel, 2005. (S) A History of Hungary in Biographical Sketches, Lukinich, 1937, P59. (S) The Man of Many Devices, Sebok, 1999. (S) A History of Hungary, Sugar, 1994.
Child of Bela and Maria:
i. King Stephen V of Hungary (23638814), born 10/18/1239 in Hungary.