Kubrat or Kurt (Bulgarian: Кубрат; Ukrainian: Кубрат; Chuvash: Купрат, Kuprat; Greek: Χουβράτης, Mari: Чумбылат, meaning "Wolf" in Old Turkic) was a Bulgar ruler credited with establishing the confederation of Old Great Bulgaria in 632. He is said to have achieved this by conquering the Avars and uniting all the Bulgar tribes under one rule.

The name Kubrat is first mentioned by Patriarch Nikephoros I of Constantinople, in his Short History in the 9th century. However the word first appears in the Orkhon inscriptions of the Gökturks and literally means "founding". According to the nomadic tradition almost every king was given a title which summarized his accomplishments or stressed a major one, such as Ilterish Khagan (İl "state", Terish "organized", Khagan or Khan "king" ) for the king who united the Gökturks for a second time. The title for the founding king would be Kubrat Khagan, which would mean "The Founding King", which he was.

In the Nominalia of the Bulgarian khans Kubrat is mentioned as Kurt of the Dulo clan. A later legend would describe him as a descendant of Attila the Hun. Some historians conclude that his maternal line was of the Ermy clan, because his maternal uncle Organa was possibly of that clan. In Hungarian history, the Great Prince of the onogurs Árpád Almos, was from the Kubrat streaming, founding the Hungarian empire in Europe.

Kubrat spent time at the Byzantine court, either as a hostage or for protection from the dynastic war within the Turkic Khaganate. As the 7th-century Byzantine historian John of Nikiu narrates:

Quetrades (i.e. Kubrat), the prince of the Moutanes (i.e. Huns), and a nephew of Kuemaka (i.e. Organa), was baptized as a child and was educated in Constantinople and received into the Christian community in his childhood and had grown up in the imperial palace. He was a close friend of emperor Heraclius.

Whether he was a child or an adult during his time in Constantinople is unclear, as the year of his birth is unknown. The exact time of this event is also unknown but probably coincided with the reign of Emperor Heraclius (r. 610–641). If the above text really applies to Kubrat then it becomes clear that during his stay in Constantinople he was educated and baptized. Probably at the same time he was given the title patrikios, which was inscribed on his ring.

Upon his return, Kubrat took power over his tribe, the Utigur Bulgars, from Organa, who had acted as regent until then. At some point, as Patriarch Nikephoros records, Kubrat expelled the Avar troops from his lands and ruled alone over the united Bulgars, thus creating "Great Bulgaria", as it was known to its contemporaries. Under his rule, Old Great Bulgaria grew to stretch from the Danube delta to the Volga river, and was recognized by a treaty signed with Byzantium in 635. Kubrat ruled in peace with the Byzantine Empire, a result of his close friendship with the Byzantine emperor and, conceivably, of his appreciation of Byzantine culture.

According to legend the 3rd, 4th, and 5th of the many sons of Kubrat with their hordes originally inhabited the Avar Khaganate.

The Pereshchepina hoard was discovered in 1912 by Ukrainian peasants in the vicinity of Poltava, yielding, gold and silver objects of total weight of 75 kg, including a ring which eventually allowed identification of the grave as that belonging to Khan Kubrat. The ring was inscribed in Greek "Chouvr(á)tou patr(i)k(íou)", indicating the dignity of patrikios that he had achieved in the Byzantine world.

Kubrat Knoll on Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica is named after Kubrat of Great Bulgaria.

Other articles related to "kubrat":

Old Great Bulgaria - Disintegration and Successor States
... The events that unfolded following Kubrat's death are described by the Byzantine Patriarch Nicephorus I ... In the times of Emperor Constantine IV, he narrates, Kubrat died and Batbayan, the eldest of his five sons, was left in charge of the state ... Under strong Khazar pressure, Kubrat's other sons disregarded their father's advice to stay together in order to resist the enemies and soon departed, taking their own tribes ...
Kubrat (town)
... Kubrat (Bulgarian Кубрат Turkish Balbunar) is a town in Razgrad Province, Northeastern Bulgaria, part of the Ludogorie region ... Named after the Bulgar ruler Kubrat, it is the administrative centre of the homonymous Kubrat Municipality ...
Bulgars - History - Subsequent Migrations
... Empire According to legend, on his deathbed Khan Kubrat commanded his sons to gather sticks and bring them to him, which he then bundled together ... Kubrat undid the bundle and broke each stick separately ... Nikephoros I of Constantinople relates that Kubrat's sons, however, did not live up to this advice, and thus soon after the death of Kubrat around 665, the Khazar expansion ...
Dulo Clan - Tamga
... Kubrat's Dulo might have been a cousin tribe to the royal Ashina clan from which the Khazar Kaghans claimed descent since they all used the same Tamga ... If John of Nikiu's "Quetrades" is indeed Kubrat, this would also explain why Kubrat is mentioned in the Orkhon inscriptions ...
Kubrat, Prince Of Panagyurishte - Ancestors
... Ancestors of Kubrat, Prince of Panagyurishte 16 ... Prince August of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha 8 ...