FOR SIX DECADES after Tervel’s rule, Bulgaria was racked by internal fighting among the nobles. The pride over Tervel’s glorious victories over the Byzantines and the Arabs was fading. Bulgaria was growing weak, shaken by continuous battles for the throne. Khans came and went, falling victim to their rivals or seeking refuge in Constantinople. Khan Kardam took the helm in the midst of this chaos and from 777 to 803, he fought to defend his throne, either striving to preserve the internal peace or waging wars with Byzantium. The wars had started in Khan Asparukh’s time and would continue almost throughout the medieval period in Bulgaria.