World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Joseph (Khazar)


Joseph (Khazar)

Joseph ben Aaron was king of the Khazars during the 950s and 960s.
Khazaria during the reign of Joseph, c. 950 CE, in blue

Joseph was the son of Aaron II, a Khazar ruler who defeated a Byzantine-inspired war against Khazaria on numerous fronts. Joseph's wife (or probably, one of many wives) was the daughter of the king of the Alans.

Whether Joseph was the Khagan or the Bek of the Khazars is contested among historians. He describes leading Khazar armies which seems to imply the role of the Bek. However, as he does not refer to a co-ruler in his writings, it is possible that by his time the two-king system had been abandoned altogether. (see Khazar Kingship).

Joseph actively sought contact with Jews elsewhere in the diaspora. He corresponded with Hasdai ibn Shaprut, a rabbi in Cordoba, and invited him to settle in Khazaria. He is also mentioned in the Schechter Letter.

Joseph was involved in wars against the Kievan Rus and the Pechenegs, as well as sporadic fighting with the Byzantines in the Crimea. He reported that he was allied with the Muslim states around the Caspian Sea against Varangian marauders from Rus' and Scandinavia.[1]

Joseph's ultimate fate is unknown. As the destruction of the Khazar empire by Sviatoslav I of Kiev occurred soon after his correspondence with Hasdai (in 967 or 969), it is possible that Joseph was ruler during the Khaganate's collapse.

See also


  1. ^ Aaron Ben Joseph. Jewish Encyclopedia. Accessed September 13, 2012.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.