Emperor Saint John Vatatzes the Merciful ((Greek): Ὁ Ἅγιος Ἰωάννης ὁ Βατατζὴς ὁ ἐλεήμονας βασιλιὰς), also John III Doukas Vatatzes ((Greek): Ιωάννης Γ΄ Δούκας Βατάτζης) or John III Vatatzes, was the Emperor of Nicaea[note 1] from 1221 to 1254 and one of the most remarkable among the successors of Constantine the Great, being the chief architect of the restored Byzantine Empire, and a respected leader who encouraged justice, charity and a cultural blossoming. He was born ca.1192 in Didymoteicho and died on 3 November 1254 in Nymphaion. His feast day is on November 4.[note 2]
The dynastic Arms of the Vatatzes family, a prominent military family from Thrace.