The conquest of Istanbul: the technologies that brought down Constantinople


Conquest of Istanbul6 centuries ago, it closed an era and started a new era. Ottoman Sultan II. Mehmed troops under his command captured Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire, in 1453. So, what were the advanced technologies of the period that brought the conquest?

The Ottoman sultan “ConquerorWe have compiled the technology that makes the siege successful. In our news, instead of giving a chronological history, we focused on technological developments.

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The hawk cannon destroying the walls of Constantinople

To take Constantinople, an army both by land him the from the sea was supposed to attack. However, whoever tried, whatever guns and cannons attacked the city, all attempts failed. In short, Constantinople, which had the greatest defense of the Middle Ages, could not be conquered. According to historians, the reason why Istanbul could not be conquered was that there were no cannons strong enough to demolish its thick walls.

.Ahi topu.

Maybe technology The best follower was the Ottoman sultan, Sultan Mehmed. Sultan Mehmed, whom historians call “genius”, personally dealt with every step of the conquest preparations. Special for conquest city ​​plan had it drawn. In just four months as well as powerful balls Anatolia and Rumeli fortresses also had it done. Even the construction of fortresses in such a short time shows how well they use technology.

Fatih, one of the important engineers of the period Saruca Pasha and Muslihuddin Aga also worked with. Hungarian-born artillery Urban He prepared the balls to be thrown from the Rumeli Fortress. These were bulk cannons not yet known in Europe. Engineers built the most powerful, long-barreled, large-bore guns to date. In fact, Urban was the first to develop the balls he developed. Byzantines had wanted to sell. However, the other party could not meet the offer he wanted. Urban later sold his expertise to the sultan.

According to many historians, the Ottoman army 150 bin ila 200 bin consisted of people. However, modern historians consider it more realistic 60-80 buildings guesses. When the army gathered on the walls of Constantinople on April 2, 1453, the Byzantines saw the Ottoman cannons for the first time.

Technology in the conquest of Istanbul.

Ottoman troops used traditional weapons in the war. However, the Byzantine city walls are about five meters long, nineteen tons large, bronze, firing stone bullets weighing 500 kg with cannons they destroyed. The caliber of the bronze cannon was roughly 1,200 meters, and its explosion could be heard over a 25 km radius. It was such a bulky ball that it took too long to fill and cool before it could only be fired seven times a day. Still, the Ottomans had a large number of small cannons, each capable of firing more than a hundred times a day.

They screwed the two separate parts of the Şahi’s cannon and joined them. Large cannons of this type were later named “Dardanelles” and are now in Hampshire, England. Fort NelsonAn example is exhibited in.

Established a great navy for the conquest of Istanbul

Enver ArslanHe wrote that cannons with an overclocking system, which can be regarded as the core of mortars, which are considered to be the invention of Fatih, were also used in this war. During the siege, they changed the position of the cannons for the first time. Again, for the first time, the balls that got hot due to over throwing with olive oil they cooled it. This method is also used today. Internal combustion engines that get hot due to friction are cooled with heat-resistant synthetic oil and water.

Conquest of Istanbul and technology.

Another technological advances were in the navy. At Gelibolu Shipyard engineers in 12 months 75 ships produced. In total, the navy had 150 ships. There were two types of ships in the Ottoman navy: large galleys and smaller little.

As it has better maneuverability, it was both easier and more convenient to bring the small to the Golden Horn. When the chain on the Golden Horn could not be crossed, Sultan Mehmed introduced a new tactic. By building a rail road to cars pulled by oxen 70 ships they uploaded. Thus, considering the opportunities of the period, 70 ships in just one day To the Golden Horn waters They managed to download it.

By building a bridge from the ships they landed on the Golden Horn, the soldiers crossed. Then the Ottomans built a pontoon and attached cannons to them. Now they started attacking the city not only from the land but also from the sea.

Prof. Dr. Burcu OzguvenFirearm castles maintained their importance on the Ottoman border from the 15th to the 19th centuries, according to his study. Sultan Mehmed, foundry and ballistic He personally inspected firearms from calculations to topographic location. Siege strategy, emerging gunpowder technology realized with the support.

.Ahi topu.

In the Battle of Varna (1443-44), Ottoman troops saw a new tactic in the Hungarians. Preferred in open field wars Wagenburg tactictransformed the carriages into a mobile castle by tying them with chains in a circle or square shape. The Ottomans adopted this tactic and developed it in conquest.

So what did Byzantium do while these were happening on the Ottoman side?

After all, April 6 – May 29 1453 as a result of the siege between dates Ottomans He conquered Istanbul. In other words Constantinople fell.

The conquest of Istanbul.

15th century AD Greek historian and eyewitness Georges SphrantzesAccording to Byzantium’s defense army was less than 5 thousand. This number was not even enough to cover the length of the city walls. Because the length of the walls is approximately 19 km in total. Moreover, the Byzantine navy not only From 26 ships consisted.

The Byzantines had catapults and Greek Fire, a highly flammable liquid that could be sprayed under pressure from ships or walls to incinerate Ottoman soldiers. However, the technology of war had advanced and Theodosian’s Walls He was about to take his toughest test ever. The Byzantine Empire, which closed the mouth of the Golden Horn with chains, failed against the genius of Fatih.


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