Battle of Zygos Pass
Varangian guard vs Pechenegs
1053 Jan 1

Battle of Zygos Pass

Danube River

The Battle of Zygos Pass was a battle between the Byzantine Empire and the Pechenegs. To combat the Pecheneg revolt, Byzantine Emperor Constantine IX sent a Byzantine army under the command of Basil the Synkellos, Nikephoros III, and the Doux of Bulgaria, to guard the Danube. Whilst marching to their station, the Pechenegs ambushed and destroyed the Byzantine army. Surviving troops, led by Nikephoros, escaped. They traveled for 12 days to Adrianople, while under constant Pecheneg attacks. Nikephoros III first gained notoriety after his actions during the battle. Resulting in a promotion to magistros. As a consequence of the Byzantine defeat at this battle, Emperor Constantine IX was forced to sue for peace.