Balša II

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Balša II Balšić
lord of Zeta
Coat of arms Balsic family XIV.svg
Coat of arms
Reign 1378 — 18 September 1385
Komnina (Kanina), a daughter of John Komnenos Asen
[[Dynasty|]] Balšić noble family
Father Balša I
Died 18 September 1385(1385-09-18) -->
Saurian field, near Lushnjë
Religion Serbian Orthodox

Balša II Balšić (Serbian Cyrillic: Балша II Балшић; Albanian: Balsha II Balshaj; died September 18, 1385) was the lord of Zeta from 1378 to 1385. He managed to expand his borders towards the south; defeating the Albanian Duke Karl Thopia.

He was a member of the Balšić noble family, which ruled Zeta (with Shkodra) from 1356 to 1421.


Balša II was the youngest of three sons of Balša I. On January 13, 1378, he came to power in Zeta after the death of his older brother, Đurađ I. His power was felt only in the region around Shkodra and in the eastern part of Zeta's coast. The most prominent feudal lords who did not recognize Balša's rule were their sworn enemies, the Đurašević-Crnojević family, who were allies of the Venetians. In 1372, Balša II married Komnina (Kanina), a daughter of John Komnenos Asen.[A] As a dowry, Balsha gained the cities of Berat and Kanina.[1] In 1382, Balša II started the war for the conquest of Durrës, taking it following four attempts. In 1385, defeated ruler Karl Topia appealed to Murat I for assistance and Ottoman Army led by Hajredin Pasha routed the Balšići the Battle of Savra on Saurian field, near Lushnjë. The Ottomans chopped Balša's head off and sent it as an exclusive gift to Hajredin Pasha. This ends the rule of his family over Durrës.

Siege of the city of Kotor by Balsa II

Balša's widow, Komnina, and their daughter Ruđina, later took control of Balša's territory in southern Albania to protect it from Turkish invaders. Komnina seemed to be the Duchy of Valona's main ruler, until her death in 1396. In the meantime, the Muzaka family had gained control of Berat. In 1391, however, Ruđina married Mrkša Žarković. Žarković succeeded the duchy, calling himself Lord of Valona. He reigned over the city until his death in 1414. Ruđina took over her late husband's position and ruled Valona until 1417, when it, as well as its citadel in Kanina, was seized by the Turks.[2] Ruđina fled Albania and sought asylum in Zeta. Her nephew, Balša III, then-ruler of Zeta, granted her asylum and entrusted her with governorship of the coastal town of Budva.[3]


  1. ^ According to not completely reliable chronicle of Gjon Muzaka (repeated in some historical works) Comita, one of the daughters of Andrew II Muzaka, married Balša II. Other authors confirm that Balša II married in 1372 and gained control over the territory south of Durazzo, including Valona and Kanine, as dowry. Still, many scholars believe that Balša II did not marry Comita Muzaka but Komnena, daughter of John Komnenos Asen who succeeded control over Valona and Kanine after the death of her brother Alexander in early 1372.


  1. ^ Fine 1994, p. 372
  2. ^ Fine 1994, p. 391
  3. ^ Fine 1994, p. 514


External links[edit]

Balša II
Born:  ? Died: 1385
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Đurađ I
Lord of Lower Zeta
Succeeded by
Đurađ II