1st Edition

The Crusade in the Fifteenth Century Converging and competing cultures

Edited By Norman Housley Copyright 2017
    by Routledge

    238 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Increasingly, historians acknowledge the significance of crusading activity in the fifteenth century, and they have started to explore the different ways in which it shaped contemporary European society. Just as important, however, was the range of interactions which took place between the three faith communities which were most affected by crusade, namely the Catholic and Orthodox worlds, and the adherents of Islam. Discussion of these interactions forms the theme of this book. Two essays consider the impact of the fall of Constantinople in 1453 on the conquering Ottomans and the conquered Byzantines. The next group of essays reviews different aspects of the crusading response to the Turks, ranging from Emperor Sigismund to Papal legates. The third set of contributions considers diplomatic and cultural interactions between Islam and Christianity, including attempts made to forge alliances of Christian and Muslim powers against the Ottomans. Last, a set of essays looks at what was arguably the most complex region of all for inter-faith relations, the Balkans, exploring the influence of crusading ideas in the eastern Adriatic, Bosnia and Romania. Viewed overall, this collection of essays makes a powerful contribution to breaking down the old and discredited view of monolithic and mutually exclusive "fortresses of faith". Nobody would question the extent and intensity of religious violence in fifteenth-century Europe, but this volume demonstrates that it was played out within a setting of turbulent diversity. Religious and ethnic identities were volatile, allegiances negotiable, and diplomacy, ideological exchange and human contact were constantly in operation between the period's major religious groupings.


    List of figures and maps

    List of abbreviations

    Notes on contributors



    1 Introduction

    Norman Housley

    Conquerors and conquered

    2 Crusading in the fifteenth century and its relation to the development of Ottoman dynastic legitimacy, self-image, and the Ottoman consolidation of authority

    Nikolay Antov

    3 Byzantine refugees as crusade propagandists: the travels of Nicholas Agallon

    Jonathan Harris

    The crusading response: expressions, dynamics and constraints

    4 Dances, dragons and a pagan queen: Sigismund of Luxemburg and the publicizing of the Ottoman Turkish threat

    Mark Whelan

    5 Alfonso V and the anti-Turkish crusade

    Mark Aloisio

    6 Papal legates and crusading activity in central Europe: the Hussites and the Ottoman Turks

    Antonin Kalous

    7 Switching the tracks: Baltic crusades against Russia in the fifteenth century

    Anti Selart

    Diplomatic and cultural interactions

    8 Tīmūr and the ‘Frankish’ powers

    Michele Bernardini

    9 Venetian attempts at forging an alliance with Persia and the crusade in the fifteenth and early-sixteenth centuries

    Giorgio Rota

    10 Quattrocento Genoa and the legacies of crusading

    Steven Epstein

    Frontier zones: the Balkans and the Adriatic

    11 The key to the gate of Christendom? The strategic importance of Bosnia in the struggle against the Ottomans

    Emir Filippović

    12 Between two worlds or a world of its own? The eastern Adriatic in the fifteenth century

    Oliver Jens Schmitt

    13 The Romanian concept of crusade in the fifteenth century

    Sergiu Iosipescu

    14 Conclusion: transformations of crusading in the long fifteenth century

    Alan V. Murray



    Norman Housley is Professor of History at the University of Leicester, UK.