Asia Minor Slavs
Asia Minor Slavs refers to the historical South Slav communities relocated to Anatolia by the Byzantine Empire, from the Balkans. After Maurice's Balkan campaigns (582-602), and subsequent subduing of Slavs in the Balkans during the 7th and 8th centuries, large communities were forcefully relocated to Asia Minor as military, fighting the Umayyad Caliphate.
The best known Slavic settlement there was the city of Gordoservon (Serbian: Srbograd, Grad Srba, Гордосервон, Greek: Γορδόσερβα) is mentioned, whose name is derived from the Serbs resettled in Asia Minor (in ca 649 or 667) by Byzantine Emperor Constans II (641–668), who came from the areas "around river Vardar". Isidor, the Bishop of Gordoservon is mentioned in 680/681, and the fact that this town was an episcopal seat gives ground to the thesis that it had a large Serbian population. Around the year 1200 this city is mentioned as 'Servochoria' (Serbian habitation).
Justinian II (685-695) also settled in Asia Minor as many as 30,000 Slavs from Thrace, in an attempt to boost military strength. Most of them however, with their leader Neboulos, deserted to the Arabs at the Battle of Sebastopolis in 692.
Military campaigns in northern Greece in 758 under Constantine V (r. 741–775) prompted a relocation of Slavs under Bulgar aggression, again in 783. The Bulgar expansion caused massive Slav migrations, and in 762, more than 200,000 people fled to Byzantine territory and were relocated to Asia Minor.
The most prominent among the Asia Minor Slavs was Thomas the Slav, a military commander who raised most of the empire in an unsuccessful revolt against Michael II the Amorian in the early 820s. Although the 10th-century chronicler Genesios calls him "Thomas from Lake Gouzourou, of Armenian race", most modern scholars support his Slavic descent and believe his birthplace to have been near Gaziura in the Pontus.
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