Siege of Bursa

Some historians says the siege of Bursa occurred from 1317 until the capture on 6
April 1326, some of other historians say the siege lasted 23 years. The
Ottomans had not captured a city before; the lack of expertise and adequate
siege equipment at this stage of the war meant that the city fell only after
six or nine years.

The historian, Laonikos Chalkokondyles, notes that the Ottomans took advantage of
the Byzantine civil war of 1321–1328 to occupy the city: “Andronikos
decided that he should hold the throne for himself, as his grandfather had
already grown old, and so they fell out with each other. He was so stubborn that
submited and caused endless trouble. He brought the Serbs and made them allies to himself leading Greeks in his struggle
for the throne. As a result, they could do nothing to prevent the Turks from
crossing over into Europe. It was back then Prusa was besieged, starved out,
and taken by Osman, and other cities in Asia were captured.” According to
some sources Osman I died of natural causes just before the fall of the city, while  others
suggest that he lived long enough to hear about the victory on his death-bed and
was buried in Bursa aftermath.

Catalan campaign in Asia Minor

One of the events that facilitated the conquest of Bursa is Catalan campaign in Asia Minor.
In 1303, the Byzantine Emperor Andronicus II Palaeologus hired 6,500 Catalan
mercenaries under the command Roger de Flor to campaign against the Turks in
the spring and summer of the same year. Their costly service came with success,
driving back the Turks in parts of Asia Minor. In Philadelphia, 18,000 Turkish
soldiers were killed, which is work of the Catalans. When their leader Roger de Flor was assassinated in Gallipoli on 3 April 1305 by
Michael lX Palaeologus followed by a massacre of 1,300 Catalans, the
mercenaries began a two-year pillage in revenge and crossed over to Thrace and
Macedonia under the command of their new leader, Berenguer d’Entença, where
further raiding occurred. As  a result of
this brutality, the Company got excommunicated by Pope Clement V.

Aftermath of Siege of Bursa

After the fall of the city, his son and successor Orhan made Bursa the first official
Ottoman capital and it remained so until 1366, when Edirne became the new
capital. As a result, Bursa holds a special place in Ottoman history as their
founding city, and also as the birthplace of Ottoman architecture (Bursa Grand
Mosque (1399), Bayezid I Mosque (1395), Hüdavendigar Mosque (1385), and Yeşil
Mosque) (1421).


Temel Eren Cirit

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