Central and South-Eastern Europe between the Christian and Ottoman worlds: conflicts, encounters and compromises (XVI-XVIII centuries)
Edited by Canan Parmaksızoğlu Aksoy
This special issue of Eastern European History Review addresses the complex and intense history of Christian-Ottoman relations in Central and Eastern Europe during the Early Modern Period. Tracing the salient moments and facts with battles, border issues, diplomacy and intelligence, the volume – with the participation of authors from different parts of Europe and Türkiye – constitutes an international opportunity to analyze topics that continually offer new study themes.
Central and South-Eastern Europe between the Christian world and the Ottoman world: conflicts, encounters and compromises (XVI-XVIII centuries), edited by the Türkiysh historian Canan Parmaksızoğlu Aksoy, and co-edited by Katalin Nagy, is the result of research and scientific collaboration between the CESPoM Study Center and Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group (ELKH-PPKE-PTE).
KATALIN NAGY (ELKH-PPKE-PTE Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group, hungary)
GIULIO MERLANI (Università di Roma “La Sapienza”, italy)
GREGORIO XIII E L’EUROPA ORIENTALE: LA VISITA APOSTOLICA DEL VESCOVO DI STAGNO BONIFACIO DE STEFANI
ABSTRACT: In the last decades of the sixteenth century, in the wake of the Council of Trent and the battle of Lepanto, central-eastern Europe suffered a multiplication of Rome’s efforts aimed to take down the Ottoman domination over the heterogeneous Danubian-Balkan world to get it back in the spiritual and geopolitical boundaries of Catholic Christianity. In this context, in 1580, Gregory XIII commissioned bishop Bonifacio De Stefani, supported by some Jesuit missionaries, to accomplish an apostolic visit in complex areas such as Dalmatian, Bosnian and Hungarian in order to verify the living conditions of Christians, Catholics and Orthodox, subjects of the sultan and their multiple relations with the Turkish world. Finally, the Pope had requested Destefani to evaluate what possibilities there were to trigger, feed and lead the insurrection of those populations against the Turks.
KEYWORDS: Papacy; Counter-Reformation; Central-Eastern Europe; Ottoman Empire; apostolic visitation.
FLORIN NICOLAE ARDELEAN (Academic Cultural Heritage Department, Babeș-Bolyai University – Romania)
CONTESTED BORDERLANDS: WAR AND TERRITORIAL DISPUTES BETWEEN TRANSYLVANIA AND THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE (1594-1595)
ABSTRACT: A few years after the Long Turkish War (1591-1606) began, Sigismund Báthory, ruler of Transylvania, decided to join the Habsburgs and the other members of the Holly League in their war against the Ottomans. Through this political decision Báthory interrupted several decades of good relations between his country and the Sublime Porte. Although Transylvania was a rather small state, with limited military and economic potential, Prince Sigismund had great ambitions. Joined by the rulers of Moldavia and Wallachia he attacked the Ottoman Empire on three fronts. In this article I will analyse the military operations on the frontier of Transylvania with the Ottoman province (vilayet) of Timișoara (Temesvár/Temeşvar) in the years 1594-1595. The various forms of regular and irregular warfare employed by the two opponents show the complexity of this confrontation. Major campaigns and sieges, which involved large numbers of combatants, were accompanied by frequent raids and skirmishes, typical for frontier warfare. These events also reveal the specific social and economic dynamic of frontiers in early modern Central and South-Eastern Europe.
KEYWORDS: Long Turkish War, Transylvania, Ottoman Empire, frontiers, borderlands
GABRIEL-FELICIAN CROITORU (Institute of Turkology, Babeș-Bolyai University – Romania)
THE BORDERS BETWEEN WALLACHIA AND THE GIURGIU KAZA, AN AREA OF CONFLICT AND COOPERATION ON THE IMPERIAL OTTOMAN DANUBE LIMES
ABSTRACT: When the Ottomans created a new territorial entity with fixed borders at Giurgiu, this was due to Sultan Kanum`s initiatives to centralize the Empire. The border between Wallachia and this new Ottoman region at Giurgiu dates back to 1544, but is later on confirmed by successive sources. Starting with the second half of the 16th century relations between the Ottoman authorities in Giurgiu and the rulers of Wallachia were not always conflictual. There were periods of cooperation and every act of transgression by Ottoman subjects on Wallachian soil were punished. At the same time, Romanian subjects tried to appeal to the Porte for help and protection whenever Ottoman representatives, Christian or Muslim abused them. Regarding the Wallachian prices, the borders at Turnu, Giurgiu and Braila were a place for conflicts, violence, excesses and delinquents, largely because the area was lightly defended and lacked central authority. Giurgiu, a Muslim city on Christian lands, was however a tempting place for the inhabitants of Wallachia.
KEYWORDS: Ottomans, Wallachia, Danube, Giurgiu, Diplomacy
TAMÁS KRUPPA (ELKH-PPKE-PTE Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group, Hungary)
THE WRITTEN AND ORAL DISPUTES OF ISTVÁN SZÁNTÓ (ARATOR)
ABSTRACT: In reviewing the activities of the Jesuit István Szántó (Arator), I would like to explore the very first steps of the Catholic renewal movement in Transylvania and of the recatholization process that found political support in princely power in the wake of the promulgation of the decrees of the Council of Trent. I must note, however, that my analysis of the religious dispute taking place in Nagyvárad (Grosswardein, Oradea) goes beyond merely giving an account of the specific event and aims to shed light on the spiritual horizon that so succinctly characterized Szántó, the main protagonist of the dispute.
KEYWORDS: Jesuit István Szántó; Transylvania; Nagyvárad; Religious dispute; King Stephen Báthory of Poland.
GÁBOR NEMES(ELKH-PPKE-PTE Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group, Hungary)
INSTEAD OF ANTI-OTTOMAN HELP AN ANTI-IMPERIAL LEAGUE PAPAL NUNCIO GIOVANNI FRANCESCO CAPI’S MISSION OF 1526
ABSTRACT: Pope Clement VII was informed about Suleiman the Magnificent’s plans to occupy Buda from the reports of the nuncios. The pope sent letters to the monarchs of the Christian world on 9 February 1526 to urge a prompt aid to the Kingdom of Hungary, since it was threatened by a huge Ottoman attack. As there were further grim reports from Buda, Clement VII planned to send an extraordinary nuncio, whose main duty would have been to inform the European courts about the Ottoman campaign that threatened Hungary. At first, he chose the Florentine Paolo Vettori, the captain of the papal navy, for the role; however, he died soon after his departure. Therefore, the experienced papal diplomat, Giovanni Francesco (Capino) de’Capi was appointed. Capeno de’ Capi set off in March 1526 to France, where he entered negotiations with Francis I to form an ally against the emperor. On 22 May 1526 the League of Cognac was signed by the Clement, Francis, Venice, and Milan. Consequently, Hungary’s case of an anti-Ottoman campaign was rather for the sake of covering secret diplomatic negotiations.
KEYWORDS: Papal Diplomacy; Hungarian-Ottoman War; League of Cognac; Crusade; French Royal Court
ADRIAN MAGINA (West University of Timişoara. Institute for Banatian Studies “Titu Maiorescu”, Romanian Academy-Timişoara)
NOS CHRISTIANI QUI HABITAMUS IN HAC URBE TEMESUAR. CHRISTIANS AND OTTOMANS IN TIMIȘOARA IN THE SECOND HALF OF 16TH CENTURY
ABSTRACT: In 1552, following a brutal military campaign, Timişoara and its surroundings were occupied by Ottomans and integrated in the Empire. Although the political change was initially a real shock for the Christian communities inside the city (Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox), the religious life continued under Turkish rule. A lot of documents from the second half of the 16th century offer information about the cohabitation between different Christian denominations and, of course, Christian-Muslim relation. The Ottoman authorities had established the best relations with the Serbian Orthodox church, recognizing many of its privileges, even allowing the foundation of a Serbian Orthodox bishopric inside the city. The Catholic and Protestant communities felt much stronger the Ottoman pressure, because the two Christian denominations tried to get support from Turkish authorities in their dispute over faith. In the early 1580, the Holy See sent the first missionaries to the city in order to help Catholic inhabitants and to stop the spread of the Reformation among them. The Protestant believers had their own dispute with the Catholics, but were not united at all: a few Lutherans, some Calvinists and even a curious Anti-Trinitarian bishopric under influence of Judaic theology can be found inside the city in the second half of the 16th century.
KEYWORDS: Timișoara, 16th century, Ottomans, Christian denominations, cohabitation
LIVIA MAGINA (Museum of the Highland Banat, Reșița – Romania)
NOVITATES DE TURCIS SCRIBIT: SPIES AND NEWS ABOUT OTTOMANS ON BORDERS OF TRANSYLVANIA AND SOUTHERN PARTS UP TO 1526
ABSTRACT: The issue of news about Ottomans in Transylvanian territories was not subject of Romanian or Hungarian scholars’ debate. The Turkish threat was permanent and became “intimate” at the southern borders of the Hungarian kingdom in the 15th and 16th centuries. As part of the kingdom, Transylvanians were directly involved in fighting the Ottomans, but also in a huge network of spies and news about the Crescent. The proximity and the close connections with Wallachia and Moldavia of the Saxon towns in the south Transylvania, allowed them to inform the Transylvanian or even Hungarian central authorities about Ottomans. A lot of news described troop movements, its number or possible invasions in different parts of the Hungarian Kingdom. In reality, most of this news was just rumors’, but produced fear and the feeling of insecurity for both officials and ordinary people.
KEYWORDS: Spies; News; Ottoman borders; 15-16th century; Transylvania.
VALENTIN CSEH (Hungarian Oil and Gas Museum, Zalaegerszeg- Hungary)
THE COLLAPSE OF THE BORDER FORTRESS SYSTEM AGAINST THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE BETWEEN 1521 AND 1527
ABSTRACT: 1521 became a turning point in the history of the border fortress system against the Ottoman Empire, as in the history of Hungary, although this is obscured by the battle of Mohács, but all the catastrophe that took place between 1521 and 1541 could be traced back to the loss of Nándorfehérvár (Beograd) and Szabács (Šabac). In my study I want to present the period of the collapse of the Hungarian border fortress system between 1521 and 1527, from the siege of Nándorfehérvár in 1521 to the fall of Jajca (Jajce) in 1527.
KEYWORDS: Ottoman Empire, Medieval Hungary, Ottoman-Hungarian War, Fortress system, Fall of Nándorfehérvár
TAMÁS FEDELES (ELKH-PPKE-PTE Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Group. University of Pécs, Hungary)
FROM THE ARMY OF KING MATTHIAS TO THE SERVICE OF GOD. A CASE STUDY ON THE ROLE OF THE APOSTOLIC PENITENTIARY IN THE PROMOTIONS OF CLERICS IN THE TIME OF KING MATTHIAS CORVINUS
ABSTRACT: The main character of this study is Gáspár Bak from Berend, the provost of Szepes (1464-1493). After he had fought in the army of King Matthias against the Hussites and the Ottomans, the cleric of the Diocese of Csanád decided to embrace ecclesiastic orders. The young man, who has previously studied in Vienna, Ferrara, and Bologna submitted three supplicaitons to the Sacra Poenitentiaria Apostolica, in which he asked to be released from the obstacles preventing his ordination. He received the permission in December of 1469. After that, he was consecrated a deacon in Bologna, and three years later, when he gained the degree in canon law in Rome, he was ordained as a priest. On the basis of the materials collected in the archives in Rome, this present work makes an attempt to elaborate on the circumstances of this extremely well-documented promotion placing it in an international context.
KEYWORDS: Medieval Hungary; Matthias Corvinus; Apostolic Penitentiary; Rome; promotion of clerics.
VIKTOR KANÁSZ (ELKH-PPKE-PTE, Vilmos Fraknói Vatican Historical Research Institute. Institute of Hungarian Research)
NUNCIO GIROLAMO MARTINENGO’S REPORTS ON THE MILITARY EVENTS OF 1552
ABSTRACT: One of the most famous periods of the anti-Ottoman wars was the year 1552. Tish was the time when the Ottoman armies captured among others the castles of Temesvár, Szolnok and Drégely which were originally in the hands of King Ferdinand I Habsburg of Hungary. The famous siege of Eger and the battle of Palást also happened this year. We have a special opportunity for a fresh view of the turbulent events of the war, provided by the examination of the reports written by Girolamo Martinengo. He was the nuncio sent by Pope Julius III to the court of King Ferdinand I. In these reports, the nuncio told in detail about the events of the war in Hungary, not only reporting in a factual and informative manner but also interpreting and commenting. This is gives us a special opportunity to examine how the court of Ferdinand I saw the events, from whom did the nuncio obtain his information and what was the Holy See interested in the aff airs and developments in Hungary? In addition, the reports shows us how the Hungarian theatre of war was integrated into the grand European politics of the time.
KEYWORDS: Diplomacy; Kingdom of Hungary; anti-Ottoman wars; papacy; nuncio.
ÁGNES SZALAI (Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary)
CONFLICTS OF JOINT SOVEREIGNTY ON THE BORDER OF THE PRINCIPALITY OF TRANSYLVANIA AND THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE IN THE SECOND HALF OF THE 17TH CENTURY
ABSTRACT: The confrontation of the Ottoman and Habsburg Empires in the 16th Century resulted in the disintegration of the Kingdom of Hungary and the formation of the Principality of Transylvania in the eastern parts of the country. The constant state of war in the middle of the 17th century taking place in the border regions of the Ottoman Empire and that of the Habsburg dynasty came to an end for two decades owing to the Peace Treaty in Vasvár in 1664. Yet, the delineation of the border between the provinces (vilayets) in Hungary and the Principality of Transylvania was not defined.The divergent interests resulted in a specific situation, that is the development of the joint sovereignty (condominium) in the border region. The present study features the effects of the joint sovereignty of the Ottoman Empire and the Principality of Transylvania on the political, economic and cultural life of the area alongside its daily life. It put a great emphasis on the significant role of the Transylvanian fortress captain from Genoa, Francesco Biale.
KEYWORDS: Joint sovereignty; Ottoman Empire; Principality of Transylvania; Michael I Apafi; Ferenc Olasz.
PIOTR CHMIEL (University of Warsaw)
A THIRD WAY. AN ATTEMPT TO REORIENT HISTORY OF EARLY MODERN VENETIAN/ITALIAN CONNECTIONS WITH THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE AND ITS BORDERLANDS
ABSTRACT: The history of early modern Italian connections with the Ottoman Empire and its borderlands is often considered separated from those of any other Central/Eastern European state or area. Only sporadically, when referred to moments of anti-Ottoman alliances’ formation, it is presented in a wider geographical context. Depicted even so, it is usually limited to political cooperation between respective Italian and Central/Eastern European polities. Taking cue from a report on Georgia by Pietro della Valle – who indicated a third way from Italy to that country passing through Poland-Lithuania, equivalent to those via Constantinople or Aleppo – the paper aims to reorient studies on connections between Poland-Lithuania, Venice, and the Ottoman Empire in the 16th/17th century. Based i.a. on primary sources mostly taken from the Venetian archives, it invites to adopt an entangled, “triangular” perspective on the study of the considered areas’ history through a closer examination of diplomatic practices, circulation of motifs in diplomatic writings on the Ottomans, and individuals’ migrations.
KEYWORDS: Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth; Venice; Ottoman Empire; Diplomacy; Armenians.
CANAN PARMAKSIZOĞLU AKSOY (National Defense University, TÜRKİYE)
EVENTS THAT TOOK PLACE IN THE RELATIONS BETWEEN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE AND THE REPUBLIC OF VENICE: FROM THE CRETAN WAR (1645-1669) TO THE ALLIANCE OF 1684 ACCORDING TO OTTOMAN AND VENETIAN SOURCES.
ABSTRACT: The Ottoman Empire posed a constant threat to European states in the Modern Age, especially the Republic of Venice. The Republic of Venice suffered a great deal of political, military and material damage with the loss of Crete in the Ottoman-Venetian War between 1645 and 1669. After the war, various negative incidents occurred that would hurt Ottoman-Venice affairs. This loss and the events between the two states played an active role in the Republic of Venice joining the alliance established by Pope Innocentius XI between the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Poland in 1684. Thus, the Ottoman Empire had to fight against the aforementioned allies until the Treaty of Karlowitz signed in 1699. The political events that caused the deterioration of Ottoman-Venetian relations and pushed the Republic of Venice to join this alliance before the Venetian Republic joined the Holy Alliance in 1684 will be examined in this article. The narration of these events will be made comparatively in the light of Venetian and Ottoman sources, especially the chronicles.
KEYWORDS: Ottoman Empire; Republic of Venice; Ottoman-Venetian Relations; Bailos; Holy Alliance of 1684.
HARUN TUNCER (University of Istanbul, Institute of Turcology – TÜRKİYE)
“NEWS IN PAPERS ARE NOT THAT MUCH CREDIBLE!” ABDULHAMID I AND THE EFFORTS TO FOLLOW THE EUROPEAN PRESS
ABSTRACT: It is a well-known fact that the advent of the printing press, and therefore the periodic and non-periodical publishing in the Ottoman society took place relatively late compared to its European counterparts. It was thought that this delay meant that the Ottomans were incapable of using the media tools of the period, either actively or passively. In this context, it was assumed that the Ottomans followed not the European press and showed no tendency to use papers as a source of “intelligence” until 1884, when Sultan Abdulhamid II established the Directorate of Foreign Affairs. Contrary to this common belief, despite the few and trivial efforts beforehand, it is seen that Sultan Abdulhamid I (1774-1789) made a consistent and careful effort to follow the European press during his reign. In this article, the sultan’s pursuit of the European press, how the papers were procured, what kind of issues were underlined in the extracts translated and how the relevant news and comments were evaluated will be emphasized, and how this effort turned into almost a standard practice following his reign will be shown.
KEYWORDS: Abdulhamid I; Newspaper; European Press; Directorate of Foreign Affairs; Intelligence.
MICHAŁ HIRSCH (Adam Mickiewicz University-POZNAŃ)
THE ROLE OF CARDINAL PROTECTORS OF THE POLISH CROWN IN EMBASSIES OF OBEDIENCE IN THE 16TH CENTURY. PREPARATIONS FOR MISSIONS, CEREMONIES AND DIPLOMACY
ABSTRACT: Ever since the Middle Ages, embassies of obedience were sent to Rome to take an oath of fidelity to the pope on behalf of Catholic rulers. In the 16th century it became a courtesy visit and a pretext to pursue political goals. Most importantly, such missions had a huge propaganda significance and served as an opportunity to manifest the power of a kingdom and its ruler in Rome. Every embassy of obedience was received in Rome in accordance with the same principles of the papal ceremonial. The organisation of a mission sent to the pope was a very complicated undertaking. Meeting all the requirements for obedience envoys was a major challenge and required the support of the Holy See. Polish monarchs did not keep permanent representatives in Rome, so cardinal protectors of Poland were the key figures during embassies of obedience. Taking care of the representatives of rulers and making sure that they were appropriately introduced and honoured at the papal court were some of the basic duties of cardinal protectors. Their care was visible at every stage of such an embassy, which is reflected by the parts of this paper. The first part is devoted to the protectors’ participation in preparing an embassy before leaving for Rome; the second part presents the cardinals’ contribution to the ceremonial part of the embassy; the third part describes the assistance that protectors provided to envoys in relation to their diplomatic activity.
KEYWORDS: Cardinals protectors of Poland; Embassies of Obedience; Papal ceremonial; Diplomacy; Polish relations with the Holy See.
CSÁK KRISZTINA CSILLA (Sapienza University of Rome, Italy)
I BARBERINI E L’EUROPA, Acta Barberiana 5. Viterbo, Sette Città, 2022, pp. 7–322. Edited by Tusor Péter and Boccolini Alessandro