Radu Negru
Radu Negru (Radu [the] Black) also known as Radu Vodă (Voivode Radu), Radu Negru, or Negru Vodă, was a legendary ruler of Wallachia.

According to Romanian traditions, Radu would have been the founder and ruler of Wallachia at a date around 1290. This is plausible, given that, in 1289, the Kingdom of Hungary
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

 forced all nobles
Nobility and royalty of the Kingdom of Hungary
This article deals with titles of the nobility and royalty of the Kingdom of Hungary.-Earlier usage :Before the accession of the Habsburgs, the nobility was structured according to the offices held in the administration of the Kingdom...

 (including those in Transylvania
Transylvania is a historical region in the central part of Romania. Bounded on the east and south by the Carpathian mountain range, historical Transylvania extended in the west to the Apuseni Mountains; however, the term sometimes encompasses not only Transylvania proper, but also the historical...

) to adhere to the Roman Catholic Church
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

, an act which could have determined the ethnic Romanian
The Romanians are an ethnic group native to Romania, who speak Romanian; they are the majority inhabitants of Romania....

 potentates to seek out new lands. According to the legend, Radu Negru has descălecat (literally "dismounted") into what became Wallachia after crossing the Southern Carpathians
Southern Carpathians
The Southern Carpathians or the Transylvanian Alps are a group of mountain ranges which divide central and southern Romania, on one side, and Serbia, on the other side. They cover part of the Carpathian Mountains that is located between the Prahova River in the east and the Timiș and Cerna Rivers...

. There are connections made by some historians between Radu Negru and the Teutonic Knights
Teutonic Knights
The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem , commonly the Teutonic Order , is a German medieval military order, in modern times a purely religious Catholic order...

 settled by the Hungarian kings in southern Transylvania.

The legend was first mentioned in 17th century Cantacuzino Annals, which also state that the prince built large churches in Câmpulung
Câmpulung , or Câmpulung Muscel, is a city in the Argeş County, Wallachia, Romania. It is situated among the outlying hills of the Transylvanian Alps, at the head of a long well-wooded glen traversed by the Râul Târgului, a tributary of the Argeş.Its pure air and fine scenery render Câmpulung a...

 and Curtea de Argeş
Curtea de Arges
Curtea de Argeș is a city in Romania on the right bank of the Argeş River, where it flows through a valley of the lower Carpathians , on the railway from Pitești to the Turnu Roşu Pass. It is part of Argeș County. The city administers one village, Noapteș...

, successive capitals of Wallachia. This is probably a confusion with Radu I of Wallachia
Radu I of Wallachia
Radu I was a ruler of the principality of Wallachia, ....

, who reigned 1377–1383). Legends surrounding Meşterul Manole
Mesterul Manole
In Romanian mythology, Meșterul Manole was the chief architect of the Curtea de Argeș Monastery in Wallachia...

 also mention Radu Negru as the commissioner of the church, and blend his image with that of Neagoe Basarab
Neagoe Basarab
Neagoe Basarab was the Voivode of Wallachia between 1512 and 1521. Born into the boyar family of the Craioveşti as the son of Pârvu Craiovescu or Basarab Ţepeluş cel Tânăr, Neagoe Basarab, who replaced Vlad cel Tânăr after the latter rejected Craioveşti tutelage, was noted for his abilities and...

, who ruled at a much later date than Radu I.

Radu is a relatively common Romanian given name for males. It could also be a Romanian surname, although it is a less frequent surname than many others.Radu is a name of Slavonic origin, meaning "the happy one".-People named Radu:* Radu Beligan Radu is a relatively common Romanian given name for...

, a name derived from the Slavic
Slavic languages
The Slavic languages , a group of closely related languages of the Slavic peoples and a subgroup of Indo-European languages, have speakers in most of Eastern Europe, in much of the Balkans, in parts of Central Europe, and in the northern part of Asia.-Branches:Scholars traditionally divide Slavic...

 word for "joy". Today, the name Radu is a very common name in Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

 and Romanian-speaking countries, such as Moldova
Moldova , officially the Republic of Moldova is a landlocked state in Eastern Europe, located between Romania to the West and Ukraine to the North, East and South. It declared itself an independent state with the same boundaries as the preceding Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1991, as part...


External links

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