Iliaș of Moldavia

Iliaș I
Prince of Moldavia
(1st reign)
Reign January 1432 – October 1433
Predecessor Alexander I of Moldavia
Successor Ştefan II of Moldavia
Prince of Moldavia
(2nd reign)
Reign August 1435 – May 1443
Predecessor Ştefan II of Moldavia
Successor Ştefan II of Moldavia
Born 20 July 1409
Died 23 April 1448
Spouse Maria
Issue Roman II and Alexăndrel
Dynasty Bogdan-Mușat
Father Alexander I of Moldavia
Mother Ana Neacşa
Religion Orthodox

Iliaş or Ilie I (20 July 1409 – 23 April 1448) was Prince (Voivode) of Moldavia twice: from January 1432 to October 1433 and with his brother Stephen II from August 1435 to May 1443.[1]


The son of Prince Alexandru cel Bun and Ana Neacşa, he was designated co-ruler and nominated successor by his father.[2] In 1433, Iliaş pledged his vassalage to Władysław II Jagiełło, Jagiellon King of Poland. He married Maria, a scion of the Olshanski family of Lithuanian nobility (granddaughter of Ivan Olshanski and sister of Władysław II's wife, Sophia of Halshany).[3] Iliaş and Maria had at least two sons, Roman II and Alexăndrel.

Iliaş faced the rebellion of his brother Stephen and several boyars, who, helped by Prince Vlad II Dracul of neighboring Wallachia, managed to dethrone him.[4] Iliaş enlisted the help of Władysław II, but he was defeated by the new prince and escaped to Poland. After Stephen pledged allegiance to the Poles, the latter imprisoned Iliaş until the ascension of Władysław III. In 1434, Iliaş' Polish supporters facilitated his freedom and convinced the king to consider withdrawing his support for Stephen.[5]

After an indecisive battle in 1435 (at Podraga or Podagra, the present-day village of Podriga in Drăguşeni), Władysław III intervened to appease the conflict and helped institute a shared rule of the two brothers over Moldavia (with Iliaş as nominal ruler and with Stephen as lord over the southeastern part of the country—in Tecuci, Kilia, Vaslui, and Covurlui—although both shared residence in Suceava).[6] In return, Iliaş agreed to pay an annual tribute to Poland (100 horses, 400 silk sheets, 400 oxen, 300 cartfuls of sturgeon) and to concede rule over Khotyn and Pokuttya.[7]

A decrease in Poland's interest in the region led Stephen to rebel. Again deposed, Iliaş was blinded (as custom prevented disabled people from ascending to the throne) and thrown in jail.[8] He died there at an unknown time.

His wife Maria fled to Poland with her sons, where she took over rule over Pokuttya—defending it against the armies of Stephen. Roman, Iliaş and Maria's son, remained ruler of the region, titling himself Prince of Moldavia and vassal to Władysław III; he was to be recognized as co-ruler by Stephen, and would eventually depose him.[9] His other son was Alexăndrel.

See also