THE HEIGHT OF THE OTTOMAN POWER.
By MORITZ BEOSCH, Ph.D.
Franco-Turkish alliance, 1535-6 . 104
Turkish and Christian barbarism . 105
Difficulties of Charles V and King Ferdinand . 106
Solyman's expedition into Austria, 1532. Check at Guns. . 107
Andrea Doria takes Coron. Peace negotiations at Vienna and Constantinople . 108
Peace between Solyman and Ferdinand, 1533. Exploits of Chaireddin Barbarossa . 109
Policy of Pope Paul III . 110
Expedition of Charles V against Tunis . 111
Barbarossa on the Mediterranean coasts. War between Turkey and Persia. 112
Death of the Grand Vezir Ibrahim. Barbarossa aids Francis I against Charles V . 113
War between Venice and the Turks . 114
League against the Turks. Embassies of Charles and Francis to Venice 115
Venetian negotiations at Constantinople. Peace between Venice and the Turks, 1540 . 116
The treaty of peace from the Ottoman point of view . 117
Death of King Zâpolya of Hungary . 118
Solyman's campaigns in Hungary . 119
His annexations . 120
Murder of Prince Mustafa . 121
Peace between the Empire and Turkey, 1555. Wars in Persia and Hungary. Murder of Cardinal Martinuzzi . 122
Fresh outbreak of the Hungarian War. Peace between the Empire and Turkey, 1562 . 123
Murder of Prince Bayazid and his sons... , 124
Turkish attack upon Malta . 125
Solyman's last campaign and death, 1566... . 126
Solyman and the army. Solyman and the teachers . 127
His treatment of his Christian subjects. His title of "the Magnificent". 129
Accession of Selim II . 130
He makes peace with the Emperor, 1568. Mohammad Sokolli and his policy . 131
Causes of the war with Venice. Cyprus . 132
Triple alliance (Spain, the Pope and Venice) against the Turks. 134
Battle of Lepanto, 1571 . 135
Break-up of the triple alliance. Administration of Mohammad Sokolli . 136
Peace between Venice and the Porte, 1573 . 137
Turkish proposals against Spain declined by Venice . 138
Deaths of Selim II, 1574, and Mohammad Sokolli, 1579 . 139
THE HEIGHT OF THE OTTOMAN POWER.
THE failure of the Turkish attack upon Vienna in 1529 almost decided the Christian Powers to take advantage of this first check in the advance of all-conquering Islam. Near, however, as they came to such a decision, they failed to reach it. After as before the siege, the Habsburg sovereigns, the Emperor Charles V and his brother King Ferdinand, were restlessly eager to put down Protestantism and secure to their House an unassailable predominance in Europe. After it, as before, Francis I persisted in his efforts to prevent the realisation of this scheme.
Concerning the Habsburg policy it is interesting to note that Francis, the Most Christian King, and Solyman IPs Grand Vezir Ibrahim Pasha expressed themselves in different words, indeed, but to precisely the same effect. " The power of Charles V," said Ibrahim, " is like a flood which, swollen by many a stream and fall, undermines the most solid foundations." " The Austrian brothers," wrote King Francis, " are bent on making the Imperial crown hereditary in their House and exalting themselves in every possible way. A new Emperor must be elected who will enthrone justice and restore the German nation to its ancient freedom."
Even as these words of the King and the Grand Vezir bore essentially the same meaning, so did the interests of France and of the Ottoman Empire point in the same direction. This was the formation of a Franco-Turkish offensive alliance against the Habsburg Power, which, not content with Spain, Italy, Austria, and the Netherlands, was reaching forth towards universal predominance. A preliminary agreement paving the way for an alliance was signed in February, 1535, at Constantinople. The formal treaty followed in February, 1536, negotiated by Laforest, the French ambassador at the Porte, and the Grand Vezir Ibrahim. So the way was prepared for that accord between France and Turkey which grew more and more intimate, until it afforded the world the spectacle of the fleets of Solyman and Francis united for common action in the Mediterranean. This, to the feeling of the time, was a heinous offence ;
The raising of the siege of Vienna, fortunate as it was for the Emperor and his brother, brought them no political advantage. Ferdinand had had himself crowned King of Hungary two years before, but here he was, and remained, a King with only a fragment of a country. Solyman had bestowed the Hungarian kingdom as a fief upon John Z‚polya ; and the latter maintained himself in its possession by Turkish help. Charles V now found himself in a position which might be described by the French proverb, " qui trop embrasse mal ťtreint." Spain urgently demanded his presence. France kept the peace, but pressed on a course of action which rendered the Emperor's position more difficult. The Pope promised to summon a General Council, but secretly did all he could to prevent its meeting. In Germany the wishes of the Protestants stood in sharp opposition to those of the Emperor. The latter, finding himself in sore want of money, was at last induced to make concessions which he abominated to the Protestants, and to try to bring about peace with Solyman. He wrote again and again to his brother (April and November, 1531), advising him to come to terms both with the Turks and Zŗpolya, and to instruct his ambassador to yield the very utmost that he could in the negotiations.
Ferdinand, in accordance with his Imperial brother's wish, actually yielded as far as he could. The King's ambassadors at the Porte were instructed, if nothing else would serve to bring about peace, to give up the whole of Hungary to Zŗpolya on the single condition that at his death it should revert to Ferdinand. The ambassadors were received in state at Constantinople ; but, when they had spoken with the Grand Vezir and had audience of the Sultan, they saw that, in spite of their utmost concessions, peace was not to be obtained, and that a new war was at hand.
Solyman made mighty preparations, hoping for an easy victory over the helpless Emperor and his brother ; and the army which started from Constantinople at the end of April, 1532, was 200,000 strong. It was to meet this imminent danger that Charles made concessions to the German Protestants which, though ambiguously worded, induced the Imperial Estates to grant for the defence a levy of 25,000 men who were to muster in Vienna by the middle of August. This resolve on the part of the Estates was due in a great measure to Luther, who persuaded the Protestants to lay aside their distrust of his Imperial Majesty and be satisfied with his gracious concessions. Nevertheless we are assured by Charles' Spanish biographer Sandoval, that he did not allow any Lutherans among the Italian, Spanish, and Dutch levies which he himself joined in Vienna in September, lest they should contaminate the Catholics and help the Turks. Altogether, he probably had gathered in Vienna a force which, including the Imperial contingent, would have been strong enough for the defence, had the siege of the city-so universally dreaded-been renewed.
The siege, however, was not to be. Solyman had advanced as far as Guns by way of Belgrade, where 15,000 Tartars from the Crimea joined him, and Essek, where he was reinforced by about 100,000 men from Bosnia ; seventeen strong places on the route had yielded to him without any serious attempt at resistance. Guns, however, before which Solyman appeared on August 9, made preparations for defence. It was well-fortified, but is said to have had a garrison of only 700 men. This handful of warriors held out for three weeks against a dozen assaults, defending heroically and successfully a breach of eight fathoms in length, and winning even the admiration of the enemy. The Governor Nicholas Jurischitz was invited into the Turkish camp on the security of two hostages and a written safe-conduct, and was cordially received by the Grand Vezir, who warmly acknowledged the bravery of the defence. In Solyman's name the town and castle of Guns were presented to Jurischitz with a robe of honour. At his request it was even granted that a guard of twelve Turks should be posted in the breach in the wall to prevent any others of the besieging force from entering. This episode carries one back to the Third Crusade, when Richard of the Lion's Heart did not hesitate to knight a kinsman of the Sultan Saladin, and when, after bloody fights, Crusader and Saracen met as friends.
The Sultan's experience before Guns probably helped to drive out of his mind the thought of besieging Vienna, now so well defended. He contented himself with overrunning Styria and some parts of Lower Austria with straggling bands of horse, turning the campaign into a plundering-raid in which the afflicted land was wasted, its people hunted into the woods or carried away into slavery. Solyman himself led the retreat with the main body of his army, and on November 18 reached Constantinople, where he was lauded as the conqueror that, on this occasion, he was not.
It would now have been well for the army concentrated in and around Vienna under the command of Charles V and Ferdinand to march in full strength against Hungary, free it from the Turkish overlordship, and hurl Zšpolya, the vassal of the Sultan, from the throne. For this, however, money in the first place was lacking. Furthermore, the season was too far advanced, and the help of the Imperial troops was not to be had. Already at the Diet of Ratisbon, when the grant of reinforcements was under discussion, even the Catholics opposed it. The whole Turkish danger was attributed to Ferdinand's feud with Zapolya ; and it was declared that if this could be brought to a satisfactory conclusion Germany would have rest from the Turks. The commander of the Imperial troops also pointed out that these had been levied against the unbeliever, and were ready to fight against him, but not against Zapolya. To risk the advance into Hungary with an army reduced by the withdrawal of the German troops was obviously out of the question.
While the Ottoman attack was checked at GŁns, Andrea Doria,
Charles' admiral, had taken the offensive by sea. He had been successful in seizing Coron on the peninsula of the Morea, one of the strongest Turkish coast fortresses. Fatras and two other sea-forts either submitted or were taken by storm, the Turkish fleet retiring before the Genoese admiral's victorious advance. But Doria could not maintain his position in these waters when winter drew near. He sailed westward, leaving behind in Coron a strong garrison of about 2000 men. To Solyman the success of the bold Genoese in the Spanish service must have been simply an annoying episode, which must soon come to an end, as the Christians in Coron were merely a fighting outpost,' and could not maintain themselves against the superior Ottoman Power. It is incredible therefore that alarm at Doria's success inclined the Sultan to peace; and, indeed, there is evidence that a very different cause influenced him in this direction. He had conceived the idea of the Persian expedition which he actually carried out next year ; and it was to avoid the necessity of carrying on war on two frontiers that Solyman lent his ear to the plea for peace offered by King Ferdinand.
In the beginning of January, 1533, Hieronymus Jurischitz, brother or step-brother of the defender of Guns, appeared in Constantinople as Ferdinand's ambassador. Two audiences, one with the Grand Vezir and one with the Sultan, sufficed to secure an immediate armistice. Even peace was not in principle refused, but the acceptance of formal proposals was made dependent upon that of certain conditions laid down in writing by the Sultan and despatched to Vienna by a Turkish agent (chiaus) together with the son of Jurischitz. Ferdinand received the chiaus as an Ottoman ambassador in all state, and, in order to forward the peace negotiations, found himself obliged to accept the Sultan's conditions. These were not difficult of fulfilment, but hard to bear for an independent sovereign such as Ferdinand felt himself to be. Solyman demanded the keys of Gran in token of submission and homage. These keys he would then generously return without insisting on the surrender of the fortress. The chiaus received a favourable reply ; and shortly after his departure from Vienna a second ambassador was despatched to Constantinople. The latter was to take with him the keys of Gran, deliver them up, and, with Jurischitz, carry on the peace negotiations. This second plenipotentiary, Cornelius Schepper, was also the bearer of two letters to the Sultan-one from Ferdinand, who styled himself Solyman's son, and offered to mediate for the restoration of Coron, Doria's conquest, the other from Charles V trying to induce the Sultan to give up Hungary to Ferdinand.
When Schepper arrived in Constantinople the negotiations for peace followed the course marked out by the Turkish programme. The keys of Gran were handed over to the Grand Vezir with the words : " Ecce claves illas, qua,? tu et Caesar Turcarum petivistis adfldem et ftrmitudinem Regiae Majestatis Domini mei dedarandam."" Upon this, the Grand Vezir
Shortly after the conclusion of the peace Solyman despatched an army for the reduction of Coron, which yielded and was handed over by the Spanish garrison. Furthermore he made Chaireddin Barbarossa Commander-in-Chief of the entire Turkish marine force, laying only one binding injunction upon him (and this as a later addition), namely, to refrain from attack upon the shores of the ally of the Porte, the King of France. Chaireddin was supreme at sea, Doria's fleet being too weak to cope with him.
In the year 1533 Chaireddin, whose ordinary occupation was attacking, plundering, and ravaging the coasts of Spain and Italy, succeeded in carrying out an act of real humanity. Landing at Oliva on the Anda-lusian coast, he in the course of seven expeditions brought away 70,000 Moors, whose life at home had been made insupportable to them by the Spanish government in alliance with the Inquisition, and conveyed them across to the North African coast. Next summer (1534) he passed through the Straits of Messina, whence he carried off booty and ships to the coasts of Naples. Here he attacked several places, took thousands of prisoners, and narrowly missed carrying off, for Solyman's harem, Julia Gonzaga, widow of Vespasiano Colonna, celebrated at the time as
Chaireddin Barbarossa, meanwhile, sailed with a fleet plentifully provided with money by Solyman, to Tunis, which town, with its strong castle La Goletta, he easily seized (August 2) from the hands of Muley Hassan, a descendant of the Arabian family which had borne sway there for four centuries and a half. He was now, as the vassal and representative of Solyman, lord of Algiers and Tunis, and from this point could direct his attacks along the shores of the Mediterranean. Sicily, Genoa, Catalonia, and Andalusia all belonged to the Emperor ; but to defend them against Barbarossa was beyond his power. The land indeed owed obedience to Charles, but Chaireddin commanded the sea and was a constant menace to the whole line of coast. The most dangerous aspect of it was that Francis I had entered into relations with Barbarossa, and shortly before October, 1533, had received his ambassadors. Further, that the King had just claimed Alessandria, Asti, and Genoa from the Emperor ; while Pope Clement VII, who had married his niece Catharine de' Medici to the Duke of Orleans, was friendly to the French, and, though he indeed censured their friendship with the Turks in public, was quite the man to take advantage of it in the Medicean interest in private. During the first eight and a half months of 1534 Charles had to be on his guard against Francis, the Pope, and the Sultan. Against Barbarossa he might indeed devise schemes, and this in all seriousness ; but the European situation forbade their being put into execution.
Happily for Charles, an event occurred which changed the entire situation. On September 25 died Clement VII, and on October 11, with rare unanimity and after a conclave lasting only an hour, Cardinal Farnese was chosen as his successor and took the name of Paul III. The plans of Clement and Francis I, arranged at a meeting in Marseilles in November, 1533, now fell to the ground. The new Pope had his family to think of, Piero Luigi Farnese, his son, and Ottavio, his grandson, and had far more to hope from the Emperor, who was all-powerful in Italy, than from Francis, who had to risk a war for his power in that country. During the first half of his pontificate Paul III maintained a neutral position between the two adversaries. Francis, deprived of all support on the part of the Pope, reduced his demands upon the Emperor, or at least deferred them to a more convenient season. Moreover, the King of France must still have had some scruple about hindering the Emperor from proceeding against Barbarossa, or attacking him in the rear while engaged in such an undertaking. The indignation of Christendom would have been aroused ; and, from the French point of view, the formal
On June 14 the Emperor's fleet reached the Gulf of Tunis and cast anchor at a short distance from the fort La Goletta. The siege lasted a month. After a breach had been made a successful assault was delivered; and, though the garrison held out bravely for ten hours, the fortress was taken. Two hundred cannon and eighty ships in the harbour were the prize of the victor. In spite of the intolerable African heat the Emperor set out with his army on July 20 upon the march to Tunis. Before they reached the latter place they had to fight with Barbarossa, who had taken up an advantageous position and lay in wait for them. He was put to flight, however ; and the fettered Christian slaves in Tunis (whose numbers are variously stated) broke their chains and opened the gates to the Emperor. On July 21 Charles entered the conquered city, and, yielding to the demand of the Spanish contingent, delivered it up to his troops for a two days' loot. The Spaniards behaved like wild beasts, plundering and murdering to their hearts' content, destroying mosques and schools, and laying buildings and precious sculptures alike in ruins. From the plundered town the Moslem inhabitants who had escaped the sword were led into slavery. Charles betook himself to La Goletta, where he reinstalled Muley Hassan, whom Barbarossa had banished, in the government of Tunis, on condition of homage and the payment of a quit-rent. In the fortress of Bona, which had also been surrendered, and in La Goletta, the Emperor left garrisons. He himself reembarked on August 10, but was detained in the Gulf of Tunis through unfavourable weather till the 17th, when he set sail for Trapani, reaching that place on the 22nd.
In certain quarters the rejoicing over the issue of this campaign was
In the autumn of the year which saw the conclusion of peace between Solyman and Ferdinand the Persian war began. For the West this could only be regarded as a fortunate event. The Ottoman State was always prepared for war; but, if it were engaged with the Persian Shiites, it must perforce allow Christian Europe an interval of peace. In the autumn of 1533 the Grand Vezir Ibrahim for the first time took command of the forces gathered on Asiatic ground. While in winter quarters, he carried on negotiations with the traitorous commanders of Persian fortresses, with the result that, as soon as operations were resumed, a whole series of fortified places surrendered to the Turks. The latter directed their march towards Tabriz, which, after crossing the Euphrates and taking more than a month's rest, they reached on July 13, 1534, and at once occupied without striking a blow. A vigorous order of the Grand Vezir checked the loot of the town, and none of the inhabitants suffered the least injury. Only in September did the Sultan join the army, which by most difficult marches over mountains and through narrow defiles was brought to Bagdad. This city likewise surrendered without striking a blow, its Persian garrison
During the next two months important events occurred. In February was concluded the Franco-Turkish treaty of alliance, mentioned above ; in March there followed the fall of the Grand Vezir Ibrahim. For fourteen years this statesman of Greek origin had stood rather beside, than beneath, Solyman, both in the possession of a rank only second to that of his sovereign, and in the actual exercise of power. The Sultan had given him his own sister in marriage, placed unbounded confidence in him, always allowed him to exercise influence in the affairs of the State, and frequently to express an independent judgment concerning them, and had shared with him both table and sleeping-room. On the evening of March 30 the Sultan and his favourite retired together, sharing the same apartments. Next morning the Grand Vezir was found strangled by the Sultan's orders. To seek the reason of such a sudden fall would be superfluous. The Grand Vezir-allowing for the difference in the manner of death-merely met the fate which befell Thomas Cromwell in England, from which Antonio Ferez succeeded in escaping by flight from Spain, and which at an earlier time overtook Remirro de Orco, Caesar Borgia's minister in the Romagna. The practices of despotism, open or veiled, are the same everywhere, alike in Christian as in Mohammadan lands. It is often as dangerous to serve as to betray it.
Shortly after the Sultan's return to his capital from the Persian expedition, war broke out again between Charles V and Francis I. For the Emperor it took an unfavourable course from the beginning. The outbreak seemed to draw the Pope entirely over to the French side and directly to invite the Sultan, who had concluded neither peace nor armistice with Charles, to help his ally the King of France. This in fact was what happened. Barbarossa was let loose upon the lower Italian provinces of the Emperor and inflicted upon them various kinds of outrage. Fortunately for Charles, though unfortunately for Venice, the Turkish fleet repeatedly came into conflict with Venetian ships. The Sultan made complaints about this and sent Junisbeg, the interpreter of the Porte, as ambassador to Venice. Four Venetian galleys, however, gave chase near Corfu to three Turkish vessels, one of which had Junisbeg on board. Contrary to the law of nations, he was taken prisoner and ill-treated, though afterwards released with excuses. To appease the Sultan the Signory put the commander of the four galleys, Gradenigo, in chains and tried Contarini, his superior in command. This was not, however.
In the contemporary Venetian historians, Paruta and Sagredo, even in Paulus Jovius, who is disposed in other respects to be partial to Charles V, we meet with the complaint that the Emperor entrapped the 'Venetians into this war with Solyman in order to weaken them. It may be doubted, however, whether this was really Charles' design from the outset, though his conduct and that of his Admiral, Doria, could hardly have been different had such been indeed their object. The Emperor and Pope carried out their engagement with the Republic only so far as to order their galleys to join the Venetian fleet. Andrea Doria, however, as commander of the Spanish contingent, rendered such inefficient service that the great sea-fight with Chaireddin Barbarossa in face of the Ambracian Gulf near the ancient Actium was lost in spite of the numerical superiority of the allies (September 28,1538). Soon after the news of this catastrophe the Signory must, thanks to French indiscretion, have heard some rumour of Charles' negotiations with Barbarossa about the end of 1538, of his offer to surrender Tunis to him, and of the despatch of two agents to conduct the affair. Three letters of Charles from Ghent (March, 1540) were subsequently found and published: one to Barbarossa himself, a second to Doria and Fernando Gonzaga, viceroy of Sicily, a third to de Tovar, governor of La Goletta. To these letters was added a note of what was in progress with Barbarossa. Whether, or how far, the latter had agreed to the Emperor's proposals cannot be discovered. The younger Granvelle, thirty years later (February 16, 1570), addressed a letter to Philip II from Rome in which it was openly affirmed that Charles had won over Barbarossa. If Doria's behaviour in the battle of Actium actually helped Barbarossa to gain the victory, this fact may be connected with the negotiations between Charles and the Turkish admiral.
Broadly speaking, the double-dealing of the Christian princes of the time is thrown into glaring light by the course of the Venetian war and the treaty of peace between the Signory and the Sultan. At the opening of the second year of the war a League had been formed in Rome (February 8,1538), in which the Pope, the Emperor, King Ferdinand, and Venice joined in an offensive alliance against the Turks. The inclusion of Ferdinand ipso facto involved the breach of the treaty which he had concluded with Solyman four and a half years before. The Pope and Emperor gave their help to the Republic so half-heartedly that Chaireddin
Charles did not admit himself either to have been vanquished or, as indeed he might have been, duped. When, on his way to put down the revolt of Ghent, he passed through France, he arranged with the King an agreement, into which they had already entered at an earlier time, for a joint embassy to Venice. The object of this was to persuade the Signory of the complete harmony prevailing between himself and Francis, and of his intention to throw his whole strength into the Turkish war, for which he could reckon on his new ally. With this mission Charles entrusted his deputy in the Milanese, the Marchese del Vasto, and Francis the Marshal d'Annebaut. These two arrived in Venice in December. At their audience with the Signory del Vasto spoke first, and said that the Emperor proposed to turn his whole strength against the Turks ; that the peace with France was definitive though some points remained to be settled; and that the two rulers had resolved to unite their forces for the overthrow of the unbeliever. Annebaut in his turn confirmed del Vasto's statements, and emphasised the fact that his King was animated by a strong feeling for the welfare of Christendom.
What credence could the Signory lend to such representations ? In
Shortly after the reception and dismissal of del Vasto and his French companion in January, 1540, the Senate resolved to send Alvise Badoer as ambassador of peace to Constantinople. He took with him two sets of instructions. One was from the Senate, merely authorising him to offer a large sum of money to the Turks instead of the two places they demanded, Malvasia and Napoli di Romania (the ancient Nauplia in the Gulf of Argos). The second was from the Council of Ten, empowering him, if all else failed, and peace was not to be had in any other way, to agree to the surrender of Malvasia and Napoli di Romania, which the Turks had been unsuccessfully besieging for a year and a half. Of this secret portion of the instructions the French received treacherous information, which they communicated to the Porte-whether for the purpose of hastening the conclusion of peace, or of proving themselves faithful allies to the Sultan, it is impossible to say. Possessed of this knowledge, the Turkish diplomatists played an easy game with Badoer. He arrived in Constantinople in the middle of April, and was received by the Sultan on the 25th. By May 4 peace was virtually concluded, though formal sanction was delayed until October 2. Venice had to give up to the Sultan Malvasia, Napoli di Romania, Urana, and Nadin on the coast of Dalmatia, and to leave in Turkish possession the Aegean islands Skyros, Paros, Antiparos, Patmos, JEgina, Stampalia, Nios, most of them already taken by Barbarossa. In addition, Venice had to pay 300,000 ducats as war indemnity.
This peace marks a stage alike in the decline of Venetian dominion and in the rise of the Ottoman power to the highest point it was destined to reach. It added one more to those blows of fortune which had stricken the Republic of St Mark since the opening of the century- the League of Cambray with its results in the second decade ; and the
The treaty appears in a very different light, however, when viewed from the Ottoman standpoint. The war which preceded it had indeed brought no defeats to the Turkish troops but had been marked by constant ill-success. The siege of the Corfu fortress was given up by Solyman after it had lasted a week, while that of Napoli di Romania had dragged on without any result. In Dalmatia the conflict had been waged with varying fortune ; now one series of small fortresses had been taken by the Turks, now another by the Venetians. On the sea indeed Barbarossa was supreme, and this wherever he showed himself. It was through him that Venetian trade had been thrown into hopeless confusion, and her sea-traffic rendered impossible while the war went on. Yet although the war with Venice by land hardly reflected credit upon Ottoman arms, the overwhelming power of the Turks was evident from the fact that they were able to carry on war on three other sides at the same time. In 1538 Solyman took the field in person against the tributary Prince of Moldavia, drove him into flight, burnt Jassy, seized the strongly fortified Suczawa and the treasure kept there, and placed a new prince over Moldavia, from which he cut off" the district between the rivers Dniester and Pruth and the Black Sea, annexing it to the Ottoman Empire. At the same time he was persuaded by fugitives from Hum‚yŻn, the Mongolian Emperor of Delhi, to turn the Ottoman arms against India. A well-equipped fleet of seventy sail with 20,000 troops on board left Suez (June, 1538) by the Red Sea, successfully attacked Aden ; landed on the coast of Gujarat ; rapidly took two fortified posts; and then set to work against a place of which the Portuguese held possession. They bravely defended themselves ; and running short of provisions the Turks had to raise the siege and retire to Egypt. On the return journey the Arabian town Yemen was compelled to accept Solyman's overlordship. When it is remembered that the year before, in spite of the peace with Ferdinand, Turkish governors of the frontier provinces had renewed the offensive and overcome 24,000 Austrians who opposed them, it becomes perfectly evident that the Turkish offensive forces were in the sixteenth century taken altogether greater than those of any other European State. Even Christendom as a whole could not compare with the Turks in this respect, for, in its deep-rooted divisions, a fragile system of alliances was everything it had to offer against the all-powerful unity of Islam.
Shortly after the drawing up of the Turco-Venetian treaty and
It was very soon evident that the Sultan had not taken the field in the interests of a child, but in his own. This he clearly demonstrated in the first year of the war, when he transformed Buda into the province of a Turkish Pasha. It was in June, 1541, that Solyman left Constantinople and took the command in person. He marched by Nissa to Belgrade, where Hieronymus Laszki, whom he had taken with him, was left behind ill ; then to Buda, of which place Ferdinand's troops had been compelled after heavy losses to raise the siege. On his arrival here the Sultan occupied the fortress with his Janissaries, banished the widowed Queen and her son to Transylvania, transformed the principal church into a mosque, and proclaimed the whole of Hungary under the rule of the Porte during the minority of the little John Sigismund Z‚polya.
In September two new ambassadors from Ferdinand reached the Sultan. They were commissioned to promise a yearly tribute of 100,000 gulden for the grant of the whole of Hungary, and, in the event of this being refused, to stand firm upon the surrender of the places in Ferdinand's possession and occupied by his troops in return for a yearly tribute of 40,000 florins. Not a fraction of either did they obtain. " Let Ferdinand," ran the answer given them, " deliver up to the Sultan unconditionally Gran, Wischegrad, and Stuhlweissenburg, and then further proposals will be entertained." Soon after this a French ambassador, Paulin de la Garde, appeared before Solyman and, complaining of the murder of the ambassadors Rincon and Fregoso in the previous June by the Imperialists, pointed to Laszki as the person upon whom the Sultan could take vengeance. Solyman, however, gave a lesson in international law to the murderers in the Imperial service and professed Christians. He set Laszki, who had fallen ill, free from his imprisonment.
On September 22 the Sultan left Buda, where he had placed a garrison and appointed a Pasha. It remained in Turkish hands for a hundred and forty-five years. In the middle of November Solyman returned to Constantinople after his four months' campaign; and a month later Chaireddin Barbarossa sailed into the harbour with his fleet. The latter had been looking on from a safe haven while Charles V in person, with a fleet equipped at heavy cost for an African expedition, was beaten back in front of Algiers by storm.
The rest of this year and that which followed brought little change into the situation. King Ferdinand again sent (July, 1542) Tranquillus Andronicus as ambassador to Solyman with the offer of a yearly tribute of 100,000 ducats if Hungary were given up ; but the embassy was entirely fruitless. Almost at the same time an army of respectable magnitude was despatched by Ferdinand to Pest, where it merely came to disaster. It was not until the spring of 1543 that the Sultan took the field again in Hungary. The conquest of a series of strong places followed ; and the important city of Gran, after sustaining a siege of eleven days only, was taken. Solyman promptly dedicated the cathedral of the surrendered city as a mosque, and apportioned Gran to the province of the Pasha of Buda. The Turks then pressed on to the siege of Stuhlweissenburg, which withstood two assaults but was in the end forced to yield. The war brought to the Sultan success upon success, ever wider districts of Hungary submitting to his sway ; and this extension of the Empire was actively carried on in the following years. Solyman had returned to Constantinople ; but his troops took Wischegrad, which King Ferdinand had seized, with the Hungarian crown which was kept there. Seven other strong places fell to them by force or consent. Fights in the open field, in which now the Turks, now the Austrians gained the advantage, alternated with the monotonous course of the sieges. It was the final result of this campaign and of the two which preceded that Solyman was able to divide the part of Hungary which was in his power into twelve sanjalcs, which, following the course of the Danube and the Theiss, extended on one side from Buda by way of Gran, Stuhlweissenburg, and FŁnfkirchen to Slavonia, on the other by Szegedin to Syrmia. Each several sanjak received a special tax-register ; and a defterdar established in Buda had charge of the whole system of the administration of the taxes. This was the half-military, half-civil and financial organisation which Solyman at the beginning of 1545 conferred upon the Hungarian portion of the Ottoman Empire. It remained in force with few changes-and these rather extensions of its sphere of operations-for a century and a half. In this aspect of his work Solyman deserves the title, given to him in the East, of the Lawgiver-and indeed that of a lawgiver whose work was permanent.
In their hopelessness of effecting anything against the superior
Ottoman arms, Charles V and his brother sought safety in peace negotiations. First in June, 1544, they succeeded in getting the Pasha of Buda to consent to an armistice, originally for a month only, but afterwards indefinitely prolonged. Then followed embassy after embassy from Charles and Ferdinand to Constantinople, which for two years were practically without result. It was not until the close of 1546 that Veltvvyck, the joint ambassador of Charles and Ferdinand, succeeded in opening a negotiation which, after a year and a half, led to the desired end. The peace, or rather five years' armistice, was drawn up on the basis of the status quo on June 19, 1547. Solyman kept all his conquests, and for the small portion of Hungary which Ferdinand had managed to hold during the war an annual payment to the Porte of 30,000 ducats was stipulated-this payment being interpreted on the Austrian side as a free gift, while the Turks regarded it as a tribute. In the peace were included the King of France, the Republic of Venice, and Pope Paul III-the last, as a Venetian Bailo told the Council of Ten, at the instance, not of the Emperor or his brother, but of the Grand Vezir, Rustem Pasha. It is highly probable that this was the exact truth, for just at the time of the peace negotiations with the Porte, Charles V was on very bad terms with Paul III, and " the Pope felt himself," as Ranke expresses it, "the ally of the Protestants."
Humiliating as the payment of tribute to the Sultan was, brilliant days seemed dawning for the Habsburgs at this time. For Charles one lucky event followed another. In July, 1546, died Chaireddin Barbarossa; in March, 1547, King Francis I, and in the following month Charles was victorious over the Protestants at MŁhlberg. To all this was now added the security of the five years' armistice which the Sultan had granted for 30,000 ducats a year.
After the treaty with the Habsburgs, Solyman allowed only a short rest to himself and his army. In the spring of 1548 he began a new campaign against Persia. The superiority of the Ottoman arms proved itself against the Persian Shiites, hated by the Turks as heretics. Fourteen years had passed since the Grand Vezir Ibrahim had taken Tabriz and saved it from loot. This time the town was taken by Solyman himself, and its inhabitants received a like forbearing treatment. From Tabriz the march went on towards Van, a strongly-fortified place which surrendered after a short siege of only eight days. Still more striking was the issue of the second campaign ; and Solyman, on his return to Constantinople in December, 1549, was able to send a triumphant report to King Ferdinand and the Signory of Venice. " Thirty-one towns," the Sultan's letter announced, " have been taken from the Persians."
Not long afterwards the Shah of Persia attempted a counter-move ; when, as will be seen, the war in Hungary again broke out between Ferdinand and the Sultan, the Shah seized the opportunity to take the
In the campaign of 1553 Solyman took the field in person. The character in which he appeared first was not that of a heroic leader, but of the murderer of his own son. Prince Mustafa, the child of the Sultan's first wife, was " a thorn in the flesh " to the second, the Russian Churrem, whom the French poets Marmontel and Favart call Roxolana. He was the heir not only to the throne, but to his father's good qualities without any of the bad. The popularity enjoyed by Mustafa with the people as well as with the Janissaries was immense, and proved his ruin. His step~mother Roxolana was scheming to put him out of the way in order to secure the succession of her son Prince Selim. In league with the grasping Grand Vezir RŁstern, her son-in-law, she could easily beguile the aged Sultan, and make him believe that Mustafa was a conspirator in league with the Janissaries to oust his father from the throne. Rustem exerted his powers of intrigue, and Roxolana her blandishments ; Solyman fell blindly into their net, and Mustafa's doom was sealed. In obedience to his father's summons he appeared in the camp at Eregli, and on entering his father's tent, without suspicion though not without warning, he was strangled before the Sultan's eyes (October 6,1553). The horrible deed roused the Janissaries to madness ; and Solyman only averted a desperate revolt by the deposition of the Grand Vezir. This terrible tragedy exercised an effect on Ottoman affairs resembling that which the Massacre of St Bartholomew had on the history of France. Prince Selim, in whose favour the crime was committed, was the first of a series of degenerate Sultans, sunk in pleasure-seeking or stricken with Imperial mania, under whose sway the Empire went to ruin.
From their winter quarters in Aleppo the Turkish army advanced into Persian territory. This they reached after crossing the Euphrates near the border fortress of Kars ; and the war was begun with the total devastation of the enemy's country. The opening character of this expedition was maintained throughout. It was a march of incendiaries who turned happy fields into deserts, and was only now and then interrupted by a fjght in which sometimes the Persians, sometimes the Turks got the upper hand. At last the superiority of Ottoman arms was
The cause of this new outbreak of the Hungarian war was that neither side had scrupulously kept the terms of the peace of 1547. The Turkish Pashas in Hungary had raided Ferdinand's territories, while the latter had, in direct violation of the treaty, involved himself in a negotiation for the freeing of Transylvania from its feudal dependence on the Ottoman Empire. Solyman had conferred the lordship of Transylvania upon Z‚polya's widowed Queen during the minority of her son ; but in actual fact the monk George Martinuzzi had arrogated to himself the rule, reducing that of the Queen to a mere name. With this Martinuzzi Ferdinand opened secret negotiations, in the hope of making Transylvania a part of the Austrian dominions, and of securing its throne for himself. When the Sultan, in spite of Marti-nuzzi's cleverness, saw through his designs, he considered that the peace had been broken by Ferdinand, and equipped an army which, some 80,000 strong, crossed the Danube at Peterwardein in September, 1551. It was commanded by Mohammad Sokolli, who subsequently, as Grand Vezir, was of the utmost service to the kingdom. In the first attack he took twelve more or less fortified places-among them the important town of Lippa on the Marosch, for which before the end of the year another fight had to be fought. After this Mohammad Pasha went on to the siege of Temesvar, where Ferdinand had placed a mixed garrison of Germans, Italians and Spaniards. After two months, however, the siege of this place had to be raised; and the Turkish army recrossed the Danube to Belgrade.
Martinuzzi, for whom shortly before Ferdinand had procured a Cardinal's hat, took advantage of the departure of the Ottomans to push forward all the troops he could procure in Transylvania, together with those of the King, for the recovery of Lippa. He himself joined the besiegers without any foreboding of his approaching fate. It had, however, become known at Ferdinand's Court that the newly created Cardinal was playing a double game-for the King on the one side and to all appearance, but also on the other for the Sultan, from whom he hoped for pardon, favour, and reward. To spoil his game Ferdinand authorised his general Castaldo, in case of treachery on the part of Martinuzzi, to prevent him from carrying out his design by putting an end to his life. Castaldo thereupon planned the murder with another of the generals, Pallavicini, and Martinuzzi's secretary; and on December 18 the Cardinal fell, pierced by many daggers. He was the victim in part
The campaign of 1552 opened for the King with failure and heavy loss at Szegedin ; for the Turks, at this time under the command of the Vezir Ahmad Pasha, with a series of successes. Between April and September, Wessprim, Temesvar, Scolnok, and other places were taken ; an army raised by Ferdinand was entirely defeated, and half of it captured and brought to Buda, where the prisoners were sold at a very low price, so overstocked was the market. It was not until October that the Turkish run of good luck was in a measure checked before Erlau, which defended itself so bravely that the siege of it had to be raised.
In the following spring an armistice of six months was signed ; and in August a negotiation for peace was opened by Ferdinand's ambassador in Constantinople. The armistice was now prolonged, but neither before nor after this arrangement was there any pause in the fighting. Incursions from one part of the country into another, and sieges of towns and fortresses incessantly continued, as if war were the normal state of things, and an armistice an unnatural episode. The negotiations for peace were interminably protracted. One of Ferdinand's ambassadors had again and again to journey between Constantinople and Vienna, for the purpose of obtaining fresh instructions. Three times this situation repeated itself with intolerable monotony during the years from 1553 to 1557. To this period belongs Pope Paul IV's strange prayer to the Turks to give up their Hungarian war, turn their forces against Philip II, and so help the Holy Father in the struggle he was waging with the Spaniards.
At last the ambassador Busbek, a Netherlander (whose invaluable letters concerning this legation throw much light upon the Turkish affairs of the time), succeeded in framing a project of peace, to which he committed himself in Ferdinand's name, without a similar obligation being incurred by Solyman. Again, years passed before the project ripened Ôhto a peace, which Ferdinand, who had become Emperor shortly before the death of Charles V, ratified at Prague on June 1, 1562. This negotiation brought a Turkish interpreter to Frankfort-on-the-Main ; and during its tedious course Ferdinand steadily and in much detail proved his right to the possession of Transylvania. His demonstration was not less steadily met by the statement that the Sultan had won his overlordship by the sword. As a matter of fact the sword dictated the whole treaty. Nothing was given up of the conquests made in the Sultan's name during the war and also during the armistice. Transylvania was adjudged to the son of Z‚polya, no encroachments being allowed here on the part of Ferdinand ; the yearly tribute of 30,000 ducats to the Porte was to be paid, and in future punctually; the peace was to be
In the last years before the conclusion of this treaty a tragedy happened in the family of the Sultan which had its origin in the murder, instigated by his wife Roxolana, of Prince Mustafa. Roxolana had also contrived that Ahmad Pasha, who had been made Grand Vezir in the place of her son-in-law Rustem, should be executed and replaced once more by Rustem. This was, however, the last success Roxolana achieved, and the last murder she had on her conscience. She died two and a half years later, with the soothing assurance that she had secured the reversion of the throne to her own offspring, or perhaps with the foreboding that a bloody struggle for the throne must decide which of her two sons, Selim or Bayazid, should succeed to it. This strife, which had evidently been smouldering from the time of Mustafa's murder, blazed out in a furious flame while Solyman was still living. On the side of Selim, the elder brother, stood his father with all his power ; but Bayazid also had a party, and was able to raise an army strong enough to maintain a hot fight with Selim at Konia in Asia Minor (May, 1559), before it gave way. Bayazid fled to Persia, where he was delivered up by the Shah Tahmasp to the executioners sent by Selim. The unfortunate prince was strangled, with four of his sons. A fifth, only three years of age, who had been left behind in Asia Minor, shared the same fate. As the price of blood the Shah received 300,000 ducats from Solyman, and 100,000 from Selim. But the debt of the Sultan was not in the Shah's opinion adequately paid in money. He demanded in addition that five sons of a Khan who had fled to Bagdad from Persian justice should be given up for execution. This demand was granted.
As he was now at peace with Ferdinand-though indeed the peace in Hungary was badly kept on both sides-the Sultan gave his attention to the maritime struggle with Spain. The warfare in the Mediterranean had continued up to this point without intermission, but with varying fortune to the combatants. An attempt made by Philip II in 1563 through the Austrian ambassador in Constantinople to gain an eight or ten years1 peace remained without result. Fighting and looting went on ; on the one side Turkish fleets and corsairs, and on the other Christian fleets, and more especially corsairs equipped by the Knights of Malta, carried on their operations, and made navigation unsafe. Solyman intended now, by seizing Malta, not only to strike at the piracy of the Christians, but to inflict heavy losses on the Spanish power. The island
While the fighting in Malta was still going on, everything pointed to a new war in Hungary. The Emperor Ferdinand had died in 1564, and the treaty of peace had to be renewed with his successor, Maximilian II. Unpleasant discussions arose in regard both to arrears of tribute due for the last two years and to events in Hungary. Here Z‚polya from Transylvania had annexed Szatmar, and Maximilian had ordered an attack on Tokay, which belonged to the Turks. Unfortunately the peacefully-disposed Grand Vezir, Ali Pasha, died in June, 1565, and the vacant office was conferred upon Mohammad Sokolli. This Bosnian, a true statesman and an upright man (such a one as did not again fall to the lot of the Ottoman Empire till after a hundred years in Ahmad Koeprili), held from this time forward, under three Sultans, the office of Grand Vezir, with wise moderation and at the same time with all necessary boldness. At the time of his coming into power he favoured war, in order to restore the belief in the invincibility of Ottoman arms which had been shaken by the failure of the expedition against Malta. Solyman was the more easily won over to this opinion, as he was much incensed by the conduct of the troops of Maximilian, who, respecting the peace as little as the Turks, had made incursions into Hungary, and had either taken or besieged Weszprim, Tokay, and Tata. Shortly after the beginning of the new year (1566) war was resolved upon ; and the Sultan, in spite of his seventy-two years and uncertain health, entertained the idea of placing himself at the head of the army.
On May 1 Solyman with the Grand Vezir left Constantinople and took the field. They marched by Sofia, Nissa and Belgrade to Semlin in
Thus in the thirteenth of the campaigns conducted by himself Solyman II had sacrificed his life. To the dead monarch his contemporaries in the West gave the title of "the Magnificent," or "the Great,11 his fellow-believers and fellow-countrymen in the East, that of "the Lawgiver." In the case of Solyman the claim to greatness holds good merely when he is compared with the majority of the members of his dynasty, which in the person of Mohammad II alone produced a ruler of equal capacity. Quite unquestionably, however, Solyman stands first among Turkish Sultans as a legislator; and the traces of his legislative activity far outlived his own time.
Though, like his predecessors the Khalifs and earlier Sultans, Solyman united in himself all ecclesiastical and temporal power, his State had become a preponderantly military one, in which the warrior class drew its reinforcement, as well as its maintenance and support, from the subject peoples. The Ottoman Empire was a military State par^ excellence, inasmuch as it was built upon ever-extending conquest. It was its mission to spread Islam by fire and sword, and to subdue unbelievers who refused to accept the faith, to the extent of making them liable to the capitation-tax.
In the constitution of the army as it had come down to him Solyman altered nothing in theory. His purpose was to make it more efficient, to facilitate its handling in the field ; and his endeavours were crowned with success. From a Venetian report, made at the beginning of the second decade of his reign, we learn that he had even then raised the
Next to the military class in order of importance was that of the teachers. As not only the faith, but also the civil law of the Moham-madan peoples was founded upon the Koran, the appointed exponents of the Holy Book must be held to be also the best judges in cases of law whether actually disputed in court or not. These Ulema, well-instructed in all the law of the faith, experts in their knowledge of the Koran, holders of the-best paid judicial posts, and administrators (seldom very scrupulous) of the incomes of many pious foundations, were an immensely rich and therefore influential class of the population. Before their sentences (fetvas) all bowed ; and the mingled ecclesiastical and secular power vested in the Sultan only affected them in so far that the Sultan at his pleasure nominated to the supreme positions from which all such judgments whether of law or faith proceeded. The repute of the Ulema was in Solyman's time still untainted ; and he did nothing to lower it, but much to secure the attachment of these half ecclesiastical, half secular men of business by the commanding motive of self-interest. As a faithful Moslem and a calculating statesman he could not dare to disoblige them ; for among the Turks too the ancient Arabian tradition was current that on the Day of Resurrection the ink of the Ulema would be as efficacious as the blood of the martyrs.
The supreme head of the priestly body was the mufti, to whose fetvas both established modes of procedure and the regulations of daily life owed their legal validity. It is worth remarking that Solyman gave a certain permanence of tenure, and thereby a certain independence, to
For the training of the Ulema Solyman issued a new course of study, to be carried on in the different colleges attached to the mosques. A course of ten grades was drawn up through which an Ulema had to pass before attaining to the higher ecclesiastical dignities or to the higher judicial posts of the Empire. None of the ten grades was to be omitted. Nevertheless, this actually took place ; for abuse crept in and the Ulema, having become an hereditary caste, registered their sons in their earliest childhood, even in the cradle, as scholars in the lowest class, so that as boys they might be at once declared ready for one of the higher forms. Things were not very different in the Catholic Church before the Reformation, when Giovanni de' Medici, afterwards Pope Leo X, as a child of nine became Archbishop of Aix, and as a boy of fourteen Cardinal, in spite of the fact that the very Pope, Innocent VIII, who made him a Cardinal, had established the rule that to have reached the age of at least thirty was requisite before attaining to the dignity of the cardinalate.
Apart from these institutions for theological training, little or nothing was done in Solyman's time for the education of the Ottoman people. The national demand for education was slight, and the responsibility of meeting it was taken easily. The Turks were far from resembling the Arabians, under whose government in Andalusia almost everyone could read and write, and could carry on his education in one of the many schools of grammar and rhetoric. This was in the tenth century, when Christian learning was outstripped by Arabian ; whereas in the sixteenth the Mohammadans had in their turn been distanced.
Not only in regard to his fellow-believers did Solyman bear himself as the head of the faith, but in regard to the Orthodox Greek Christians of his realm. Mohammad II had thoroughly grasped the fact that the numerous Greeks in his Empire greatly preferred himself to the Pope, and willingly received their Patriarch at his hands. The conqueror of Constantinople, however, and his grandson Solyman, could as Sultans hardly regard themselves as other than supreme in all the affairs of the Christians, temporal as well as spiritual ; and they appointed and deposed
In other than Church affairs the condition of the Christian population, called Raja, was not much better than that of a subject-people which had to work for its lords at a very low wage. The Raja had to pay to the holders of the timars a tenth, often by abuse a higher proportion, of the produce of the ground. To the State they had to pay a poll-tax, and deliver up a tenth of their boys for the army. Moreover they were subject to a whole series of rents and taxes which, though reduced to a system by Solyman, formed, taken altogether, a sufficiently heavy burden. The mere names of these taxes-bride tax, hoof tax, pasture, bee, mill, herd, and meadow tax, compulsory or villein service, and provision for the army taking the field-recall the conditions of feudal dependence in the West, and the reality of the obligations implied fully corresponded with the evil sound of. the names. Still, before a Turkish Cadi, who was obliged to observe the great lawbook of Ibrahim of Aleppo compiled at Solyman's command, the Raja would get justice sooner than would a serf in Germany or France from his hereditary judge; and, even if the law gave fewer rights to Christians and Jews than to Mohammadans, it still afforded the possibility for each man to secure in full those which belonged to him in law. Not without reason was this Sultan called " the Lawgiver " by his people.
In regard to Solyman's title of " the Magnificent " the case is quite different. In the high sense in which this epithet was applied to Lorenzo de' Medici, for instance, Solyman by no means deserved it. The Sultan was fond of splendour; and his magnates followed the example he set in this respect. He magnificently adorned the city of Constantinople by the building of six new mosques. By undertaking works of utility such as bridges and aqueducts he enhanced the comfort of its inhabitants, and by opening up new means of communication by road he greatly facilitated intercourse between different parts of the Empire. At the same time he had regard to the filling of his treasury and the steady increase of the income of the State, so that, to carry on costly wars, pay the cost of luxury, and heap up treasure, he must beyond doubt have tampered with economic laws without sparing the sources of the
With all conceivable care and skill the Grand Vezir had concealed the fact of Solyman's death until the arrival of his successor Selim in the midst of the army at Belgrade. After the announcement of the mournful tidings a largesse according to custom was made to the troops upon the new accession. The Janissaries, however, grumbled and demanded more, but were appeased by the declaration that no more money had been brought from Constantinople. On the day of the solemn entry into the capital, however, the rebellion broke out ; and the Janissaries by open force, as well as by threatening to loot the city, succeeded in obtaining a largesse of the value which was wont to be given in former times upon the accession of a new sovereign.
Selim II inherited the Hungarian war ; and this went on a full year longer without a decisive result for either side. While the Emperor Maximilian II could not reckon on any considerable success, the Sultan was bent on embarking upon a war in another direction ; and the Grand Vezir was satisfied with the fact that Ottoman arms had overcome Szigeth after an obstinate resistance, so that none of them had any desire to prolong the war. Maximilian therefore wrote to congratulate the Sultan on his accession and asked at the same time for a safe-conduct for the peace ambassadors whom he proposed to send to Constantinople. No objection was made to the grant of the safe-conduct; and at the end of the summer of 1567 a peace embassy, equipped with the inevitable presents, appeared in the Turkish capital. The three ambassadors of whom it was composed found themselves face to face with a surprisingly altered situation. The Sultan was full of warlike ardour-not, however, directed against Maximilian and Hungary, but against Venice-for he was intent upon the acquisition of the island of Cyprus. The Grand Ve/ir was in favour both of peace with the Emperor and the maintenance of the peace with Venice. As it was now of importance to the Sultan to have his hands free on all sides, so that he might turn his undivided
At the Court of the Sultan the game of intrigue already in progress as to the question of war or peace with Venice began to draw to an issue. The Grand Vezir, who was favourably disposed towards the Venetians, had already under Solyman I at their desire procured a formal prohibition to Turkish merchants to trade with papal Ancona, and had further brought about the renewal (June, 1567) of the old treaties with the Republic. But now all he could do was to try to delay the execution of the Sultan's will, and hope perchance by the delay to turn it aside from its original purpose. Selim, however, was influenced in a direction opposed to the opinion of the Grand Vezir by personal inclination, the suggestions of intriguers, possibly also by real political considerations, rightly or wrongly understood. Selim may or may not have remembered that in his scheme for the conquest of Cyprus he only proposed the execution of what Solyman had already contemplated, when in 1564 he proposed to Duke Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy the severance of the island from the Venetian dominions. In any case, Lala Mustafa had laid Selim under great obligations when he was prince ; the admiral Piali Pasha had something to gain from a naval war ; the renegade Miquez Nasi, who held in fief the island of Naxos, hoped for the investiture of Cyprus ; and all these together plied the ear of the Sultan with representations as to the ease with which Venice could be conquered, and the importance of the acquisition of Cyprus for the security of Ottoman supremacy in the Mediterranean. Every Sultan, they said, should signalise his entry into power by a brilliant feat in arms, and such a feat might now be performed without risk ; for Venice, enervated by a thirty years' peace, had almost forgotten the art of war.
Mohammad Sokolli would have been powerless against the war-party had he not been strengthened by the action of Philip II. As a result of this King's intolerable oppression, the Moors rose in wild revolt in the south of Spain, and in his attempt to suppress the insurrection Philip did not shrink from inhuman cruelty. The Moors appealed to their fellow-believers across the sea, and procured active assistance from the Turkish vassal States of North Africa. This, however, could only prolong the rebellion, it could not ensure its success. The Moors resolved to appeal to the supreme head of their faith, the Ottoman Sultan. In the spring of 1569 a Moorish deputation appeared in
Constantinople to claim the powerful intervention of the Padishah in their peril of subjugation and even of ruin. The feeling which this deputation met with in the Turkish capital was so deeply sympathetic, so powerfully fostered by the Ulema, so widespread, moreover, and shared by such numbers of the faithful, that even the party which was urging war with Venice had to assume the appearance of taking for granted an expedition against Spain. They are said to have proposed that the Sultan should effect a landing in Neapolitan territory at Otranto, and thus, by making a diversion in favour of the Moriscos, compel Philip to desist from their pursuit. Had this proposal been executed it would simply have amounted to ut aliquid feusse videretur. Of what advantage could it have been to the Moors in Granada if distant Otranto were besieged or taken by the Turks ?
The attitude of Mohammad Sokolli was totally different. He saw that the moment had come for a great undertaking against Spain, and that it must be seized. Philip II was at war with the Moors, who, supported by the Sultan, would hazard their resources to the uttermost. He was also occupied with the revolt of the Netherlands, where Alva was carrying on his bloody work, and was without any European alliance, or any prospect of getting one. France, in scarcely concealed rivalry with Philip, was in friendly intimacy with the Sultan. The Emperor- weak, dependent on Spanish support, and yet estranged from Spanish policy-was hampered, indeed crippled, in every action by the German Estates. The Italian States, oppressed by Spain, were exposed all along their shores to Ottoman attack. Finally, England was under the sway of Elizabeth, for whom alliance with Philip against Selim II would have been suicide. Such was the condition of affairs, and such the state of relations among the European Powers. The opportunity must be seized, and a new line of action taken up to press forward the frontiers of Mohammadanism into the territory of its traditional foe, now for the moment sharply pressed and isolated. Solyman would have lost no time in delivering a blow against Spain at a time such as this, when it was so likely to be effective. Nor was Mohammad Sokolli the man to linger and allow the Moors to bleed to death. His will, however, was only that of the Grand Vezir, and had to bend to that of a Sultan who, at a moment which unmistakably called him to great deeds, was consumed with a feverish desire for the possession of Cyprus.
Two errors brought about the war with Venice. In the first place the Diwan in Constantinople was misled by the news of a devastating fire which broke out in the Venetian Arsenal in September, 1569. They believed that the whole Venetian fleet was destroyed, while in fact, though considerable damage was done, only four galleys were burnt. Secondly, the Venetian Signory was deceived, when it persuaded itself that not only was an alliance with the Christian princes within reach (which proved to be the case after prolonged efforts to this end) but
At the end of January, 1570, the Venetian Signory received the news that the Sultan was not to be dissuaded from his design upon Cyprus, and that very shortly the surrender of the island would be demanded. In the hope of help from the Christian Powers, and encouraged by an earlier rumour that the Porte was behindhand with its maritime preparations, the Signory resolved definitely to refuse the demand and to abide the issue of war. When the bearer of the ultimatum, who left Constantinople on February 1, arrived in Venice and threatened that if Cyprus were not voluntarily surrendered it would be seized, he received the answer: "The Signory are firmly resolved to defend their legitimate possession of the island of Cyprus, trusting in the justice of God." This answer, given on March 27, must have arrived in Constantinople towards the middle of April ; and in May a fleet under Piali Pasha's command, with 50,000 men on board, was on its way to begin the conquest of the island. War had broken out, and Venetian diplomacy was at work to obtain for the Republic the help of the other Christian States at war with the Crescent.
In the first place application was made in Rome to Pope Pius V to allow the Signory to levy a tenth on the property of the Venetian clergy for the purposes of the war. When the Pope showed himself inclined to organise a league of Powers against the Turk, the Signory immediately authorised their ambassador in Rome to enter into the negotiations necessary for such a purpose. These negotiations were unduly prolonged, inasmuch as for all concerned the matter had a very serious side. Only the Pope threw himself heart and soul into the affair ; and without his pressure and exhortation it would to all appearance have fallen through, in spite of the imminent peril to be averted. Even Venice, which had to withstand the first Ottoman onset, was filled with anxiety lest the results of an anti-Ottoman league should prove scarcely less fatal than those of a Turkish victory. The Venetians had to fear that Philip II, if the Turks were beaten with his help and under his leadership (which could hardly be refused), would reap all the advantage ; that he would strengthen Spanish domination in Italy, and do away with the monopoly of the navigation of the Adriatic tenaciously maintained by the Signory, and so offensive to Philip himself and his kinsmen, the German Habsburgs. The ruler of Spain had indeed an interest in the weakening of the Ottoman Power, but it was by no means his intention that this weakening
Such being the state of mutual suspicion of the two parties chiefly concerned, it is not to be wondered at that the negotiations concerning the league lasted from March, 1570, till May 20, 1571. On that day, however, the Triple Alliance against the Turks between Spain, the Pope, and Venice was at last signed in Rome. Though a difficult birth, it was destined to give a lusty proof of vitality in the battle of Lepanto, but was then to die an early death.
During the diplomatic turmoil from which the league was born the Turks had not been idle. Their fleet had in passing devastated the island of Tenos, and reached Cyprus, near the ancient Paphos, on July 1. After the disembarkation of the troops, who were well equipped with siege guns, the Turks, under the command of Lala Mustafa, undertook the siege of Nicosia, and brought it to a successful conclusion on August 8. The town was destroyed by fire and sword. The Turkish attack was then directed against Famagosta, where the garrison made so brave a defence that the siege took a long time, and was still going on when the triple alliance became an accomplished fact. Yet in the third month after the conclusion of the league Famagosta had to capitulate ; and the news of the perfidious breach of the agreement for the surrender, the barbarous slaughter of the brave defenders, and the infamous defiance of treaty obligations shown in throwing the inhabitants and garrison into slavery, spread through Christendom. The Turkish commander, Lala Mustafa, at whose door this barbarity was laid, incurred the worst odium. But while he must have appeared to many as a sort of Mohammadan Alva, he should, in fact, only bear a portion of the blame, though the names of those who were responsible for the greater part are not to be ascertained.
The triple alliance now seriously gathered together its forces. In addition to papal, Venetian, and Spanish ships, it had at its disposal troops and galleys furnished by the Duke of Savoy, Florence, the feudatories of the Pope, Parma, Urbino, Ferrara, and the Republics of Genoa and Lucca. In Naples, on August 14, Don John of Austria, the half-brother of Philip II, received the admiral's flag at the hands of Cardinal Granvelle as commander of the united fleets of the league. The place
The whole number of troops-that is to say, of actual fighting men- on board the Christian fleet, is given at 30,000. On October 7 the fleets engaged, and, after a sharp struggle, the allies gained a victory more complete and more brilliant than had ever yet fallen to the lot of the Christian Powers when contending with the Ottomans. Nearly fifty of the enemy's ships were burnt or sunk, the number of the Turkish dead amounted to 8000, that of the captured to 7000, and that of the Christians released from bondage in the enemy's galleys to 10,000. On the whole it seems likely that the Ottoman fleet would have been annihilated if Gianandrea Doria, who commanded the right wing of the allied fleet, had not managed to fail in a manúuvre, and let Ochiali Pasha, with 40 galleys, escape. Recent research has placed beyond doubt the fact that Doria's manúuvre failed purposely, in order to spare Ochiali, with whom Philip II had formerly carried on a negotiation, as Charles V had once done with Barbarossa.
The battle of Lepanto proved the superiority of Christian arms, its results that of Turkish diplomacy. It made clear also the fact that the Ottoman State was still at the height of its power. The maintenance of this position was facilitated by the divisions, nay hostility, which broke out not only between the cabinets of the three allies, but between the crews of the different nationalities, which had united to win the victory but went asunder over the distribution of the spoil. How matters were going on after the victory in the allied fleet may be gathered from a communication addressed on October 26 to the Venetian Doge by Marco Antonio Colonna, commander of the papal squadron. " Only by a miracle," he writes, " and the great goodness of God was it possible for us to fight such a battle, and it is just as great a miracle that the prevailing greed and covetousness have not flung us upon one another in a second battle." According to the agreement in the league half of the booty gained was to go to the Spaniards. They, however, in the weighing and measuring of it, tried to overreach the Venetians. This beginning of strife was fostered, or, at least, permitted, by the Admiral-in-Chief, Don John of Austria, who had an earlier quarrel with Sebastian Venier, commander of the Venetians, which was renewed after the battle. We hear that upon one of the Spanish galleys each simple soldier received booty to the value of two or three thousand ducats; while Sebastian
Venier-so he affirms in his account to the Senate-only received as his share 505 ducats, a coral chain, and two negro slaves. Certainly not all Spaniards secured any gain there of money or money's worth. We know, for instance, that the immortal Cervantes fought at Lepanto and lost his left arm ; but that he made anything out of the battle we do not know.
A very short time after the Ottomans had suffered their severe defeat, the alliance of the Powers went to pieces. Before the end of October Philip II ordered Don John to bring back the Spanish ships of the allied fleet to Messina, and to winter there. Don John sailed by Corfu to Messina, whither he also took the papal as well as the Spanish galleys. Next summer he received orders from Madrid to repair again to the Adriatic, and cooperate with the Venetians against the Turks. Once again the allied fleet faced the Turkish, which had been refitted in Constantinople and was under the command of Ochiali Pasha. But the two fleets only came within sight of each other, without attempting a serious engagement. Don John remained before Navarino until September, and then sailed with his fleet in the direction of Italy. This was the last expedition against the Ottomans undertaken in common by the triple alliance ; and after its failure the burden of the war fell upon Venice alone. Venice was encouraged on all hands to persevere against the enemy of Christianity, but received support from none, even the papacy refusing its help. Pius V, the indefatigable promoter of the league, had died in May ; and an application by Venice to his successor, Gregory XIII, for a loan of money was met by a cold refusal.
In comparison with this growing disintegration of the league the conduct of the Ottoman government in the hands of Mohammad Sokolli appeared worthy of all admiration. The Grand Vezir had not only to reckon with the difficulties of the moment but with a Sultan such as Selim II, whom a French ambassador at his Court described as "the most imbecile person who ever held sway over the Ottoman State." To instil energy into this person, or even to get him to allow any scope to the energy of others, was in truth no easy task. Yet a single word from the Grand Vezir sufficed to gain the Sultan's attention. Selim agreed with all that Mohammad Sokolli proposed, and in political matters did all he wished and allowed what he ordered. At this time every conceivable effort was being put forth for the restoration of the navy, which had been practically destroyed at Lepanto. The arsenal of Constantinople was enlarged, space and ground being obtained for this enlargement at the expense of the gardens of the seraglio, from which an enormous piece was cut off. The building of ships was taken in hand with feverish speed, however incredible it may appear, and in the summer of 1572 a hundred and fifty new galleys were ready, and Ochiali Pasha was sufficiently strong to put to sea against Don John. Two years later the Ottoman fleet had attained to such strength that Ochiali, with 250 sail, appeared off Tunis, and once more seized it from the
Spaniards, who had settled there a short time before. This achievement in shipbuilding astonished the world, for in the sixteenth century no Christian State was capable of equalling it. It showed clearly that the Ottoman Power still stood firm, and that, from the height to which it had risen under Solyman, it had not yet fallen in the very slightest degree. "I could never have believed," wrote the ambassador whose accurate summing up of Selim II has just been cited, "that this monarchy were so great, if I had not seen it with my own eyes."
This ambassador was the Bishop of Acqs, of the noble House of Noailles, an extremely anti-papal and anti-Spanish diplomatist. It was he who, when negotiations for peace were opened between the Porte and Venice, undertook the office of mediator. All that the Signory got from the triple alliance was the momentary intoxication of the victory of Lepanto. After this there was nothing but bitter disappointment. A commercial crisis had set in at Venice, paralysing trade, greatly strengthening the party of peace, and limiting the enthusiasm for the war within ever narrower circles. The hope of securing a fairly favourable peace gained ground, and took the place of the expectation of Spanish help, which had now quite died out.
The Council of Ten, which until 1582 held in its hands all the threads of State affairs, authorised the Venetian Bailo, Marco Antonio Barbaro, in September to enter into a negotiation for peace with the Grand Vezir, either directly or through the medium of the French ambassador, the Bishop of Acqs. But he happened to be for some time absent from Constantinople ; and the negotiation was at first carried on through the interpreter of the Porte, Oram Bey, and the Jewish physician of the Grand Vezir, Babbi Salomon. A little later it was taken up by the Grand Vezir himself and the Bailo. The negotiation lasted more than three months, in spite of the fact that peace was desired on both sides and that the relations of two negotiators, Mohammad Sokolli and Barbaro, were those of friendly intimacy ; but at last, on March 7, 1573, the matter was settled. The treaty, which was signed in Constantinople, sealed the cession of Cyprus to the Sultan. It further arranged that the Venetians should give back to the Turks the hill-fort Sopoto, near Corfu, which they had taken ; that they should raise the tribute paid to the Porte for the possession of Zante from 1000 to 1500 ducats ; and should pay 300,000 ducats as war-indemnity. On the other hand, the treaties previously concluded were reconfirmed, and, in regard to the delimitation of borders, the principle of the restoration of conquests on both sides, and of the reestablishment of the status quo ante was adopted.
Even the Bishop of Acqs, one of the authors of this peace, admitted in writing to Charles IX how very badly it had turned out. The Signory had to accept it because they could not drive the Turks out of Cyprus, and had learnt by recent experience both that no reliance was to be
Selim II died in December, 1574. His love of pleasure, his idleness and drunkenness, had to a certain extent been of use to the Grand Vezir, inasmuch as the Sultan after he had, through the conquest of Cyprus, become the Extender .of the Realm, amused himself in his seraglio and gave up the cares of State, without any demur, to Mohammad Sokolli. Under Scum's successor, Murad III, the situation was different. The new Sultan indeed owed his peaceful accession to the Grand Vezir, who however remained to the last without the recompense due to him. Though it is true that Mohammad Sokolli kept the management of affairs in his hands till his death (the result of an outrage) in October, 1579, he had a difficult position. His sworn enemies often found a hearing with the Sultan ; and their malicious whispers could only be kept from him by unremitting care on the part of the Grand Vezir.
" With Mohammad Sokolli," says a Venetian ambassador, " Turkish virtue sank into the grave." It would be far truer to say that with his death began the decline of Turkish power-a decline which after him other vigorous and highly gifted Grand Vezirs, notably those of the Kuprili family in the seventeenth century, tried to check. But in spite of their efforts the downward movement took its course and has continued to the present day.