Leo III of Armenia

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Portrait of Prince Levon by Toros Roslin, 1250

Leo (or Leon) III of Armenia (c.1236-1289) was king of the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia, ruling from 1270 to 1289. He was the son of Hethum I of Armenia and Queen Isabella of Armenia.

In 1262 Leo married Keran (Kir Anna), the daughter of Prince Hethum of Lampron. In 1266 Leo was captured and his younger brother Thoros killed while fighting the Mamluk invaders. Leo was ransomed by his father, who gave up the throne for him shortly after. He was known as a pious king, devoted to Christianity.

In 21 years of marriage Leo had 15 children by his wife Keran, eight sons and seven daughters. Two sons and two daughters died at an early age:

  1. Hethum II (ruled 1289 to 1293, 1294 to 1297, 1299 to 1307)
  2. Princess Fimi of Armenia (born c.1266)
  3. Princesse Sybil of Armenia (born c.1269)
  4. Thoros III (ruled 1293 to 1298)
  5. Prince Ruben of Armenia (born c.1272)
  6. Princess Zablun of Armenia (born c.1274)
  7. Princess Sybil (or Zabel) of Armenia (born c.1276)
  8. Sempad (ruled 1297 to 1299)
  9. Constantine III (ruled 1299)
  10. Isabelle of Armenia (died c.1321), who married Amalric of Tyre
  11. Princess Theophane of Armenia (born c.1278)
  12. Rita of Armenia, who married Michael IX Palaeologus, co-Emperor of the Byzantine Empire with his father Andronicus II Palaeologus
  13. Prince Nerses of Armenia (born c.1279)
  14. Oshin (ruled 1308 to 1320)
  15. Prince Alinakh of Armenia (born c.1283)

5 of his 15 children, Hethum, Thoros, Sembat, Constantine, and Oshin, later became the Armenian kings, who often fought each other to gain the throne.

He was succeeded by his son Hethum II.

  Preceded by:  
 Hethum I
  Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia    Followed by: 
 Hethum II  

Bibliography[change | change source]

  • Boase, T. S. R. (1978). The Cilician Kingdom of Armenia. Edinburgh: Scottish Academic Press. ISBN 0-7073-0145-9.