Sultan Mehmet Fatih

Sultan Mehmet Fatih

Sultan Mehmet Fatih, Mehmed, the fourth son of Murad II and Hümâ Hâtûn, was sent to Manisa the same year his father set him on the throne at Edirne. At only twelve years old, he faced grave external and internal crises. Hungary’s king, the Pope, and various other powers sought to take advantage of a young sultan being in charge. This led to fierce rivalries between powerful grand viziers in Edirne. In September 1444, news of a crusader army crossing the Danube caused panic and arson in Edirne alongside a massacre by the Christian-influenced Ḥurūfī sect.

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The victory at Varna in November 1444, under Murad II, halted the crises. This allowed his son, Mehmed II, to remain as sultan in Edirne. Çandarlı then orchestrated a revolt of the Janissaries which brought Murad back to Edirne and reinstated him (May 1446). As a result, Mehmed was sent once more to Manisa where Zaganos and Şihâbeddin had been appointed as his tutors. Despite this, he still believed himself to be the rightful ruler.

Upon the death of his father, Mehmed II was once again seated on the throne of Edirne (February 18, 1451). His focus was entirely set on capturing Constantinople. Very few in Europe and Byzantium paid heed to his plans, for he was yet to prove himself as a leader. But, soon enough, he demonstrated the strength of his authority by punishing severely any Janissaries who had dared question him about the late gift of accession. Despite this disciplinary measure, he still nurtured loyalty in this military organization which would be instrumental in achieving his ultimate goal: conquering Constantinople. Consequently, mehmed sparingly devoted all essential diplomatic and military efforts towards seizing it.

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