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Thread: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

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    Member Member Magister Pediyum's Avatar
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    Question Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    “To escape is impossible, to surrender is unthinkable.
    Let’s fight with bravery and honor our arms!”
    Janos Hunyadi's proclamation before the Battle of Warna.

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    robotica erotica Member Colovion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    the last crusade.

    Battle of Nicopolis 1396

    20,000 Chevaliers (Knights). French, German, English and others made up the shock force of the Christian force at the battle of Nicopolis. Sigismund of Hungary urged the chevaliers to form the rear and allow his sturdy infantry made of Wallachians, Croats and Hungarians to bear the shock of the attack. When Bayazid's skirmishers appeared on the horizon the Chevaliers pronounced the Hungarian plan was a trick to steal the glory of defeating the Moslems for themselves. Philip of Artois, High Constable of France cried out in desperation:

    "The king of Hungary would have the honor of the day! ... We have the advance gaurd and the battle belongs to us ... Foward, in the name of God and Saint George!"

    En masse the chevaliers plunged forwards past the perplexed Hungarian lines, scatterings of other troops following and taking up the cry "God wills it!" - after massacring their Turkish and Serbian prisoners. The chivalry of Europe thundered forward in a brilliant display of fluttering banners and gleaming lances. The charging Europeans scattered the skirmishers as they pressed forth up a long slope and destroyed utterly the foot archers and looked then upon the Turkish light cavalry, the sipahis. The lightly armoured Turks were swatted away like flies 'neath the heavily armoured chevaliers charge.

    But then they pressed forward once more, distancing themselves from their supporting infantry and their main force. They had merely destroyed the front lines of the Turkish force, the lightly armoured and militia troops; simply Bayazid's advance force. The Europeans were now Winded but Impetuous, Eager for more battle. As they gained the next ridge they were confronted by the heart of the Turkish army, 60,000 janissaries endowed with their white turbans and buffered by armoured Cavalry which held the wings and created a semi-circle. Neglecting to attempt to charge first, the Turks hung back and rained down their cruel arrows upon the wearied and bewildered Christians, had they not just destroyed the main force? Who were these fresh troops who stood so reolutely? The arrows took a heavy toll on the knights - forcing many to dismount from their lamed mounts. Many still fled in fear.

    And then the Turks pressed forward, and enclosed the last stand of Chivalric Europe. The slaughter was horrific - wearied men fighting grimly on and assailed on all sides by fresh Turkish troops eager to sink a blade or shaft into the invading Europeans. After the battle, 10,000 of the Europeans were herded together and slaughtered.

    The Hungarians and their infantry had never been able to make battle before the chevaliers were routed.

    What defeated the Christian Knights was not their lack of skill in battle nor their technology of arms; it was their ignorance of their opponents.
    robotica erotica

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    Boondock Saint Senior Member The Blind King of Bohemia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    The main host was made up of French and Burgundians and after initial sucess they faltered, mainly due to the Jannisaries reforming and pouring mass arrow fire against the mounted(and some dismounted) French-Burgundian Force.

    Being surrounded due to reckless overconfidence after breaking through the 2nd and third Ottoman Lines, they were met with the Sultans own reserve, the rallying Anatolian Sipahi and the Serbian contingent under the Despot Stefan. His cavalry also played pivotal importance once the battle against Sigimund of Hungary occured.

    I agree with you on the ignorance of their opponents saw them losing the battle as at one point they did come close to breaking the Turkish army. But the underestimated the discipline of the Ottoman host and it cost them dear. That and the lack of the mutual cohesion between the Franco and Hungarian armies( mainly due to the Burgundian/French arrogance towards their allies) adding to the reason for defeat.

    I think the numbers were fairly equal at the least 16,000 each and at the very most 30,000. Any numbers over that is abit off the mark i think.
    Last edited by The Blind King of Bohemia; 06-16-2005 at 22:32.

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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    Ignorance of their opponents and arrogance towards their allies. I think it could be summed up as contemptuous arrogance towards anyone other than themselves. After all, the East had been handing the West its head on a plate for around a thousand years

    ........Orda

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    Shadow Senior Member Kagemusha's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    Its all about dicipline.If you look at any very sucesfull army in history its all about dicipline.Medieval European armys in general were not even armies. They were bands of knights and man-at-arms.As how much we like to boost our ancestors,Europe was periferia when you think about military history in medieval times.
    Ja Mata Tosainu Sama.

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    Member Member Komutan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    Quote Originally Posted by Colovion
    As they gained the next ridge they were confronted by the heart of the Turkish army, 60,000 janissaries endowed with their white turbans and buffered by armoured Cavalry which held the wings and created a semi-circle.
    60.000 janissaries? Until the end of 16th century the janissaries numbered no more than 10.000-15.000 men. During the siege of Constantinople there were only 5.000 janissaries in the whole Turkish army. At the end of 16th century people began to enter Janissary Corpse voluntarily(not just christian children) and their numbers swelled up. But during the Battle of Nicopolis their number was probably less than 5.000. The writer who describes the battle probably thinks that all of the Turkish infantry were janissaries. But actually there were many different infantry corpses; janissaries were the elites.
    Last edited by Komutan; 06-19-2005 at 13:21.

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    Boondock Saint Senior Member The Blind King of Bohemia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    Correct. I believed the Turkish and christian armies numbered around 20,000 each. Numbers going into 50 and 60 thousand's is a total exageration on the chroniclers part.

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    Ja mata, TosaInu Forum Administrator edyzmedieval's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    60.000 Janissaries is wayyy tooo much!!! Let's make a comparison:

    in 1386, 60.000 Janissaries(acording to the books)
    in 1453 at the siege of Constantinople, 10.000 - 15.000 Janissaries

    only 1 solution: Had the Turks fought so much and lost 45.000 Janissaries???!!!

    Impossible....
    Ja mata, TosaInu. You will forever be remembered.

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    Swords Made of Letters - 1938. The war is looming in France - and Alexandre Reythier does not have much time left to protect his country. A novel set before the war.

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    robotica erotica Member Colovion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ottoman Cavalry vs. Knights which battle and what was the result

    Quote Originally Posted by Komutan
    60.000 janissaries? Until the end of 16th century the janissaries numbered no more than 10.000-15.000 men. During the siege of Constantinople there were only 5.000 janissaries in the whole Turkish army. At the end of 16th century people began to enter Janissary Corpse voluntarily(not just christian children) and their numbers swelled up. But during the Battle of Nicopolis their number was probably less than 5.000. The writer who describes the battle probably thinks that all of the Turkish infantry were janissaries. But actually there were many different infantry corpses; janissaries were the elites.
    Yeah seeing as the entire army was supposedly made up of just over 100,000 men - that would make sense. Perhaps I misread it. It may have said that near 60,000 fresh troops were waiting for them at the top of the ridge, bolstered in the center by the elite Janissaries. EIther way, thanks for the clarification.
    robotica erotica

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