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Ioan cel Cumplit (1521 – 1574) was Voivode of Moldavia between February 1572 and June 1574.

He was surnamed Vodă cel Cumplit (the Terrible Voivode), cel Viteaz (the Brave) or Armeanul (the Armenian).

He was the grandson of Stephen the Great and the son of Bogdan III and his Armenian mistress Serpega. It is said he spent part of his life being a merchant in Constantinople, where he had closely studied the Ottomans and their weaknesses.

Ioan was one of the last medieval Romanianmarker rulers to battle the Turks. His short reign was marked by fierce combat against the Ottoman Empire and their Crimeanmarker Tatar allies. In order to counter the power of the Ottomans, he allied himself with the Ukrainian Cossacks. He was victorious at Brăilamarker, Tighinamarker and Cetatea Albamarker. When an army of 150,000 Turks was sent against him, he personally surrendered, being promised that his Moldavian soldiers and Cossack allies would be spared in exchange for his capture. He was killed by the Ottomans by tying his body to four camels, driven in different directions. His soldiers were nonetheless, slaughtered mercilessly.


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