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  • #31
    First post here.....I enjoy reading Alternate History scenarios and books. I went through this thread and there are some very interesting ideas and thoughts. However, my voice just yearns to be heard. First, Constantinople fell to the FOURTH Crusade in 1204. The Latin Empire of Constantinople didn't really control all that much of what was the Eastern Roman Empire at the time. The Greeks set up shop over in Nicaea and Epirus. Fellow "Frank" lords dismembered the southern balkans--Thessalonica, Duchy of Athens, here a Despotate and there a Despotate. Even after the Greeks re-took Constantinople the City and Empire never came close to even a shadow of prior glory. It had been two hundred years since the Empire lost the interior of Asia Minor (Anatolia) where the bulk of their native armies came from. In Europe Serbs and Bulgars weren't going to let them be placed under the Imperial thumb again. The Latin states did not go away. In fact, Trebizond on the coast of the Black Sea remained independent even after the restoration in Constantinople. From the 1260s through the end in 1453, the emperors had to rely upon mercenaries for the protection. Even their once vaunted navy was now a has been, dominated by Venice and Genoa and other Italian ports.

    There was no way that the Eastern Roman Empire would have survived the siege in 1453. The Turks had artillery. They were the first ones to breach the walls. nuff said there. Could they have left Constantinople alone for a while longer? Sure they could have. By 1453, The Turks had subjected most of Greece (some hold outs on islands and in the Peloponese). Also they had subdued the half of the Serb lands, all of Bulgaria and half of present day Roumania. Constantinople had survived somewhat in the backwaters of the Ottoman Empire for decades. The Western Europeans were tired of hearing the pleas from Constantinople and would not raise much of a fuss no matter when the conquest occured. Nation State building was gaining momentum now that the English and French stopped their century long wars. The only ones overly concerned about the City were the Genoans and Venetians since they had so much money invested in the city. These investments had to be protected. Heck even the Genoans weren't that overly concerned since they had their colony in Galati and negotiated with the Turks separately.

    In 1453, the Eastern Roman Empire posed do threat or challenge to the Ottomans. Even if a crusade could have been mounted, it would not, if it had been successful, restored lands to the Greeks. The leaders would have partitioned the Balkans amongst themselves, similar to what the leaders of the Fourth Crusade did in the 13th Century. The leaders of Western Europe most likely still listened to troubadors sing about the disaster of the Battle of Nicopolis..the last major attempt to relieve the Balkans and the CIty.

    Nope...Nothing better could have happened once the Turks became established in Europe. Although the E.R.E. is one of my favorite subject areas. By this point it was an Empire only in name..in fact Constantinople was only a city in name..itself barely a shadow of its glory days.

    Hope this was helpful.

    Bernooch

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    • #32
      Just as a side note, wasn't some of the Ottoman artillery sold to them by a man who offered to sell them to the Byzantines first?

      Would such an arsenal have helped the Byzantines, or would it just have delayed the inevitable?

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      • #33
        Originally posted by Churchill
        I believe the original question was whether Byzantium COULD have succeeded in preventing the Ottoman Turks from capturing Constantinople. It is always difficult to promote "what ifs". History is a harsh taskmaster. Suffice to say that the opinions rendered in this discussion appear to reflect a genuine willingness to examine all sides of the question free from dogma. Thanks.
        Yep, and it makes a good discussion.

        I don't think the Byzantines could have stopped the Turks. Had they won in 1453, they would have lost as soon as the Turks could gather another army. The war was pretty much lost by then.
        Barcsi János ispán vezérőrnagy
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        "Never pet a burning dog."

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        • #34
          The war was pretty much lost by then.
          Yup. the defeat in battle of Manzikert 1071 AD against Seljuck Turks had doomed them like Stalingrad 1942 doomed Germans in WWII, after that battle they were nether able to regain strategic initiative and recapture the strategicly important haertland of Anatolia.
          1453 Siege of Constantinpole can be compared to Berlin 16 IV - 02 V 1945 operation. Obviusly the last stand battle.
          http://www.dicksonc.act.edu.au/Showc...manzikert.html
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          • #35
            Originally posted by DracoBorealis
            Yup. the defeat in battle of Manzikert 1071 AD against Seljuck Turks had doomed them like Stalingrad 1942 doomed Germans in WWII, after that battle they were nether able to regain strategic initiative and recapture the strategicly important haertland of Anatolia.
            1453 Siege of Constantinpole can be compared to Berlin 16 IV - 02 V 1945 operation. Obviusly the last stand battle.
            http://www.dicksonc.act.edu.au/Showc...manzikert.html
            Yup, and a good comparison.
            Barcsi János ispán vezérőrnagy
            Time Magazine's Person of the Year for 2003 & 2006


            "Never pet a burning dog."

            RECOMMENDED WEBSITES:
            http://www.mormon.org
            http://www.sca.org
            http://www.scv.org/
            http://www.scouting.org/

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