Girei dynasty

Girei dynasty (Girāy). A dynasty of Crimean khans from the 15th to the 18th century, founded ca 1434 by Haji-Girei (d 1466) who, with the disintegration of the Golden Horde, proclaimed himself the ruler of an independent Crimean Khanate. In 1475, Mengli-Girei became a vassal of the Turkish sultan. The name Girei is linked with large, continual raids on Ukraine, involving pillaging and burning of villages and the capture of slaves. Islam-Girei III formed a pact with Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky against Poland (see Cossack-Polish War). In 1783, the last of the Gireis, Shagin-Girei, was forced to abdicate and the Crimea was annexed to the Russian Empire.

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