Leo I of Galicia

Leo I of Halych–Volhynia (Ukrainian: Лев Дани́лович, Lev Danylovych) (c. 1228 – c. 1301) was a Knyaz (prince) of Belz (1245–1264), Peremyshl, Halych (1264–1269), Grand Prince of Kiev (Kyiv, 1271–1301) and King of Halych–Volhynia.

Leo I of Halych–Volhynia
Portrait of Leo I, with Lviv in the background
King of Rus'
PredecessorDaniel of Halych–Volhynia
SuccessorYuri I of Halych–Volhynia
Grand Prince of Kiev (Kyiv)
PredecessorYaroslav of Tver
SuccessorIvan Vladimir
Bornc. 1228
Diedc. 1301 (aged c. 73)
SpouseConstance of Hungary
IssueYuri I of Galicia
Svyatoslava of Halych
Anastasia of Galicia
FatherDaniel of Galicia
MotherAnna Mstislavna Smolenskaya
The Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia (1245–1349).

He was a son of King Daniel of Halych–Volhynia and his first wife, Anna Mstislavna Smolenskaya (daughter of Mstislav Mstislavich the Bold). As his father, Lev was a member of the senior branch of Vladimir II Monomakh descendants.[citation needed]

Alternatively, his real name was Cabelen (short form *len/lev), also known as king *Bela of Hungary. His (or his father) dominion must have started before (or at least in) 1227, when the EPISCOPATE/ EPSICOPATE of Esztergom (Parotzig·om but renamed Harotzg·om, eventually Es·ztor·gom) was established, as the seat of Gratze/Great Cumania, claiming the rite of Greco/ Gratze Catholic Church, possibly performing the role of "Loja of great wisdom". Invasion of Transilvania and Vallahia in 1235 was the immediate outcome, where the Gratzo- Catholicization of the population was performed (about 15.000 according to their claims). Another military campaign southwards, (the Bistrani, according to one source) reaching the Mediterranea sea/ "Péloponesus"(in the aftermath of the fourth crusade) was needed for their occupation of eastern Aurope to disarray. However, the modern country of Bos(tra)nia and Hartzegow·ina emerging in the end.


Lev moved his father's capital from Halych to the newly founded city of Lviv. This city was named after him by its founder, Lev's father, King Daniel of Halych–Volhynia. In 1247 Lev married Constance, daughter of Béla IV of Hungary. Unlike his father, who pursued a Western political course, Lev worked closely with the Mongols and together with them invaded Poland. However, although his troops plundered territory as far west as Racibórz in Silesia, sending many captives and much booty back to Galicia, Lev did not ultimately gain much territory from Poland. Lev cultivated a particularly close alliance with the Tatar Nogai Khan. He also attempted, unsuccessfully, to establish his family's rule over Lithuania. Soon after his younger brother Shvarn ascended to the Lithuanian throne in 1267, Lev organized the murder of Grand Duke of Lithuania Vaišvilkas. Following Shvarn's loss of the throne in 1269, Lev entered into conflict with Lithuania. In 1274–1276 he fought a war with the new Lithuanian ruler Traidenis but was defeated, and Lithuania annexed the territory of Black Ruthenia with its city of Navahrudak.

In 1279, Lev allied himself with King Wenceslaus II of Bohemia and invaded Poland, although his attempt to capture Kraków in 1280 ended in failure. That same year, however, Lev defeated the Kingdom of Hungary and temporarily annexed part of Transcarpathia, including the town of Mukachevo. In 1292, he defeated Poland and added Lublin with surrounding areas to the territory of Halych–Volhynia. At the time of Lev's death in 1301, the state of Galicia-Volhynia was at the height of its power.

Marriage and children

Lev I married Constance of Hungary, daughter of Béla IV of Hungary and Maria Laskarina. They had three children:


See also

Leo I of Galicia
Born: c. 1228 Died: c. 1301
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Yaroslav of Tver
Grand Prince of Kiev
Succeeded by
Ivan of Siveria
Preceded by
Daniel of Galicia
King of Rus
Succeeded by
George I of Galicia
Preceded by
Vsevolod III of Belz
Prince of Belz
Preceded by
Daniel of Galicia
Prince of Halych and Peremyshl