||gros - Iliaš I||
20 mm diameter, 1.2 g
Obverse Inside inner pearl cicle knight wearing armor riding to the left, with a sword in the left hand; outer pearl circle.
Reverse Inside inner pearl cicle shield with a cross above a sign; outer pearl circle
The groat was struck by Iliaš (Elias) I, prince of Moldavia between 1432 and 1442 (with interruptions). The medieval coin pictures above are present on Romanian coins through the kind permission of Mr. Justinn O.
About Elias (Iliaš)
After the death of Alexander the Good (on January 1st 1932), Elias assumed the throne of Moldavia, after having already been associated to the reign. He was son of Alexander the Good and of his first wife, Ana Neacša. Elias was married to Marinca, whose sister was the wife of Vladislav Jagello, king of Poland.
The reign of Elias was quickly contested by his half brother Štefan (Stephen), illegitimate son of Alexander the Good. The mother of Stephen was Stanca. Elias caught the mother of his rival, killing her through drowning. Stephen fled to Muntenia (Walachia), whence he returned with army and, in autumn of year 1433, ousted Elias from the throne, the later fleeing to Poland. In 1435 Elias returned from Poland with help and, after several fights, reached a deal with Stephen, splitting the reign and the country. The two reigned simultaneously over to 1442.
From the chronicle of Grigore Ureche we learn that in 1444 Stephen caught and blinded Elias. In 1447 Roman II, son of Elias, entered Moldavia with Polish help, defeated Stephen in battle, caught and beheaded him, thus avenging his father.