Stephen III of Moldavia, known as Stephen the Great (Romanian: Ștefan cel Mare; pronunciation: [ˈʃtefan t͡ʃel ˈmare]; died on 2 July 1504) was voivode (or prince) of Moldavia from 1457 to 1504. He was the son and co-ruler of Bogdan II of Moldavia who was murdered in 1451. Stephen fled to Hungary, and later to Wallachia, but with the support of Vlad III Dracula, Voivode of Wallachia, he returned to Moldavia, forcing Peter III Aaron to seek refuge in Poland in the summer of 1457. Teoctist I, Metropolitan of Moldavia, anointed him prince. He attacked Poland and prevented Casimir IV Jagiellon, King of Poland, from supporting Peter Aaron, but eventually acknowledged Casimir's suzerainty in 1459.
On July 2, 1504, the Voivod Stefan the Great and Holy (1457-1504), or "Ştefan cel Mare şi Sfînt" in Romanian, died after 47 years of rule over the Principality of Moldavia. Stephen the Great is a national hero in Romania and Moldova, the symbol of the country's struggle for sovereignty over the centuries, having fight in particular against the Ottoman Empire. July 2 is today a Commemoration Day ("Ziua comemorării lui Ștefan cel Mare și Sfînt") in Moldova, dedicated to the memory of Stephen the Great.. . Read more..
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