Georges Maniakes was one of the most famous generals of his day. He captured the town of Edessa in 1032, and acted as strategos of the theme of the poleis of the Euphrates, centered on Samosata, a town on the north bank of the river. He later became catepan of Vaspourakan, the region to the north of lake Van, a theme created when prince Senacherim Arcruni, confronted by the Turks, entrusted his lands to the safekeeping of the emperor. Maniakes also won success against the Arabs in the wars in Italy and Sicily, and in 1040 would have seized the island if he had not been recalled, suspected of imperial aspirations, and imprisoned. Sent a second time to Italy, he was again recalled, but this time he rebelled. He was killed in combat in 1043, while prepairing to confront the troops of the emperor Constantine Monomachus.