Koppány was a Hungarian
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 nobleman of the tenth century. Brother of the ruling prince of Hungary, Géza
Géza can refer to any of the following:* Géza of Hungary, Grand Prince of the Magyars* Géza I of Hungary, King of Hungary* Géza II of Hungary, King of Hungary...

 of the Árpád dynasty
Árpád dynasty
The Árpáds or Arpads was the ruling dynasty of the federation of the Hungarian tribes and of the Kingdom of Hungary . The dynasty was named after Grand Prince Árpád who was the head of the tribal federation when the Magyars occupied the Carpathian Basin, circa 895...

, Koppány ruled as Prince of Somogy in the region south of Lake Balaton
Lake Balaton
Lake Balaton is a freshwater lake in the Transdanubian region of Hungary. It is the largest lake in Central Europe, and one of its foremost tourist destinations. As Hungary is landlocked , Lake Balaton is often affectionately called the "Hungarian Sea"...

. Following the death of Géza he claimed the right of succession: inheritance of the crown was determined by the principle of agnatic seniority
Agnatic seniority
Agnatic seniority is a patrilineal principle of inheritance where the order of succession to the throne prefers the monarch's younger brother over the monarch's own sons. A monarch's children succeed only after the males of the elder generation have all been exhausted...

, and Koppány was the oldest surviving member of the House of Árpád. However, his claim to power was challenged by Géza's son Vajk, Koppány's nephew, who had by then been baptized a Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

 and given the name of István.

István claimed a divine right
Divine Right
Divine Right may refer to:* The Divine right of kings, the doctrine that a monarch derives his or her power directly from God* Episcopal polity, the doctrine that is required in the church jure divino, i.e...

 to succession and wanted to complete his father's work in turning Hungary into a European Christian kingdom; Koppány in contrast stood for the old tribal values and pagan
Paganism is a blanket term, typically used to refer to non-Abrahamic, indigenous polytheistic religious traditions....

 religion of the ancient Magyars.

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