Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
1453: The Holy War for Constantinople and the Clash of Islam and the West Paperback – August 15, 2006
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"The characters . . . are drawn in great detail from historical source material to bring them to life on the page." -- Los Angeles Times
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In his book, Mr. Crowley takes us back to the year of the title, when Sultan Mehmet II, a man barely out of his teens but who has survived the intrigues that barred his way to the throne, lays siege to Constantinople. Despite the fact that the city has resisted sieges many times before thanks to its natural water defenses and ancient western wall, Mehmet is willing to take the risk. Constantine XI, the aging emperor who guards the city, is weak and his city and empire is only a shadow of its former glory. So, Mehmet gathers his armies and vassals and heads to the walls.
Overall, Mr. Crowley's descriptions of the siege are absorbing. He points out the very important advantages that Mehmet had over previous would-be conquerors: he brings cannon and a navy. The walls of Constantinople were impregnable to a classic mediaeval attack but the arrival of gunpowder to the West and the development of cannon made the walls vulnerable. Plus, no attacker had ever brought a navy to bear on the city before and its very existence cut off the possibility of resupplying the city, making a successful siege a possibility.
But Mehmet's victory was by no means assured and, in fact, he could have easily failed.Read more ›
Further, as Napoleon said, "history is the agreed version of events by the victors." Before photographs and sound/picture recording, much of what is taken as historical fact can be disputed. With all that in mind, Roger Crowley has done a commendable job. What gives me the right to say so? Well, I have encountered the very same task!
I am a novelist and my first book, "The Lion of St. Mark (St. Martin's Press, 2005), was written before I read Roger Crowley's 1453. I only wish I had had it by my side when I was toiling over disputing sources as I wrote my fictional (but historically accurate, I trust) account of the great siege of Constantinople and what happened afterwards.
I appreciate his decision to go with his gut when versions of what happened irreconcilably collide and avoid the use "perhaps", "possibly", and "might have", which can drag historical story-telling to a crawl.
Crowley's style is highly readable and skillfully blends history with many illustrative anecdotes to bring the siege to life. Who could not feel the courage and fears of the Christians and the Ottomans as they fought and bled in the fosse and on the walls in their supreme struggle?
Like the old Mad Magazine's Spy vs. Spy, their contest presaged the modern-day technological battle in the Battle of the North Atlantic that saw the Allies and Germans constantly one-up each other as each strove to gain supremacy.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The author goes over the lead up and aftermath of the siege as well as the siege itself. He presents the book as a story while trying to give fair treatment to all sides. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Jeff M
The city of Constantinople was the greatest defensive structure of the medieval world. In the course of its 1,123 year history up to the year 1453 it had been besieged 23 times,... Read morePublished 1 month ago by T. Graczewski
I was in Istanbul last year and found it fascinating, but I didn't know the history as presented in this history. I wish I had read it. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Rennaisance W Oman
This is a very interesting book on an exciting subject. It covers the fall of Constantinopla, and some of the differences between the Roman Catholic and the Christian Ortodox... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Rodolfo
Very good. I likes Empire of the Seas also. The author does a great job of putting you in the action. Read morePublished 3 months ago by RCali
Brilliantly researched and a fascinating account from both sides of this event that changed history. I highly recommend this book.Published 4 months ago by Jeremy Christensen
A superbly written account of the fall of Christian Constantinople to the Muslims in AD 1453. Constantinople was chosen by the Roman Emperor Constantine as his new Christian... Read morePublished 4 months ago by StudyCredit(dot)com