Fall of Constantinople

The fall of Constantinople (Greek: Ἅλωσις τῆς Κωνσταντινουπόλεως, romanized: Hálōsis tē̂s Kōnstantīnoupóleōs; Turkish: İstanbul'un Fethi, lit.'Conquest of Istanbul') was the capture of the Byzantine Empire's capital by the Ottoman Empire. The city fell on 29 May 1453,[7][8] the culmination of a 53-day siege which had begun on 6 April 1453.

Fall of Constantinople
Part of the Byzantine–Ottoman Wars and Ottoman wars in Europe

The last siege of Constantinople (1453), French miniature by Jean Le Tavernier after 1455.
Date6 April – 29 May 1453 (53 days)
Location
Constantinople (present-day Istanbul)
41.0167°N 28.9769°E / 41.0167; 28.9769
Result

Ottoman victory

Territorial
changes
Belligerents
Commanders and leaders
Strength
Ottomans
Land forces:

Naval forces:

Byzantines
Land forces:
  • 7,000–10,000
  • 600 defectors[2]
  • 200 archers[3]
  • unknown number of the Catalan retinue

Naval forces: 26 ships

Casualties and losses
Unknown but likely heavy 4,000 killed[4]
30,000 enslaved[5][6]

    The attacking Ottoman Army, which significantly outnumbered Constantinople's defenders, was commanded by the 21-year-old Sultan Mehmed II (later called "Mehmed the Conqueror"), while the Byzantine army was led by Emperor Constantine XI Palaiologos. After conquering the city, Mehmed II made Constantinople the new Ottoman capital, replacing Adrianople.

    The fall of Constantinople marked the end of the Byzantine Empire, and effectively the end of the Roman Empire, a state which dated back to 27 BC and lasted nearly 1,500 years.[9] The capture of Constantinople, a city which marked the divide between Europe and Asia Minor, also allowed the Ottomans to more effectively invade mainland Europe, eventually leading to Ottoman control of much of the Balkan peninsula.

    The conquest of Constantinople and the fall of the Byzantine Empire[10] was a key event of the Late Middle Ages and is considered the end of the medieval period.[11] The city's fall also stood as a turning point in military history.[citation needed] Since ancient times, cities and castles had depended upon ramparts and walls to repel invaders. Constantinople's defenses in particular, especially the Theodosian Walls, were some of the most advanced defensive systems in Europe and the world. However, these substantial fortifications were overcome with the use of gunpowder, specifically in the form of large cannons and bombards, heralding a coming change in siege warfare.[12]