Anna Paleologina (d. 1340)

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Anna Paleologina (d. 1340)

Regent of Epirus. Name variations: Palaeologina. Birth date unknown; died after 1340 in Thessalonica (Greece); married John Orsini, despot of Epirus (r. 1323–1335); children: Nicephorus, later Nicephorus II of Epirus.

A princess of the Byzantine ruling family, Anna Paleologina married John Orsini, despot of the northwest Greek principality of Epirus. Anna, who despised her husband, arranged to have him murdered by poison in 1335. Then she and her son Nicephorus became the acting rulers of Epirus. Anna remained in power for only five years, during which time she tried to appease the Byzantine emperor Andronicus III Palaeologus, whose extensive empire and powerful army posed the greatest threat to her throne and the independence of the Eprian people. The emperor, however, wanted Epirus under Byzantine control, and, in 1340, Anna was overthrown and forced to flee Epirus with Nicephorus. She died in exile in Thessalonica, though her son continued to wage war in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to regain his inheritance.

Laura York , Anza, California

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Anna Paleologina (d. 1340)

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