The Treaties of Carlowitz (1699) includes recent studies on the Lega Sacra War of 1683-1699 against the Ottoman Empire, the Peace treaties of Carlowitz (1699), and on the general impact of the conflict upon Modern Europe and the Balkans. With its contributions written by well-known international specialists in the field, the volume demonstrates that sometimes important conflicts tend to be forgotten with time, overshadowed by more spectacular wars, peace congresses or diplomatic alliances. The “Long War” of 1683-1699 is a case in point. By re-thinking and re-writing the history of the conflict and the subsequent peacemaking between a Christian alliance and the Ottoman state at the end of the 17th century, new perspectives, stretching into the present era, for the history of Europe, the Balkans and the Near East are brought into discussion.
Contributors are: Tatjana Bazarova, Maurits van den Boogert, John Paul Ghobrial, Abdullah Güllüoğlu, Zoltan Györe, Colin Heywood, Lothar Höbelt, Erica Ianiro, Charles Ingrao, Dzheni Ivanova, Kirill Kochegarov, Dariusz Kołodziejzcyk, Hans Georg Majer, Ivan Parvev, Arno Strohmeier.
Once the Sea Powers had shouldered most of the burden of the Nine Years War in the West, the Habsburgs sent three fourths of their army back to the Eastern Front by 1691. Their main goal, though, continued to be defensive: They did not plan to expand into the Balkans but hold on to their recent gains, above all to Transylvania. This is why Temesvar, the fortress threatening the approaches to Transylvania, ranked higher on their list of priorities than Belgrade. After an almost accidental siege of Belgrade in 1693 and a low point of the war effort in 1694, the Elector Augustus of Saxony as a new commander in the East twice tried to conquer Temesvar in 1695 and 1696. With the Ottomans making best possible use of their interior lines of communications and their control of the Danube, both attempts ended in failure (battles of Lugos and on the Becva). Even when the peace of Rijswijk and Eugene’s victory at Zenta in 1697 seemed to open a window of opportunity in the East, the Habsburgs were far more occupied by the looming struggle for the Spanish inheritance than by the prospect of enlarging their Empire in the East.
The article discusses the goals of Crimean expeditions led by prince Vasilij Golitsyn and the way his policy was reshaped by Peter the Great after he took over power in fall of 1689. Before the first Crimean expedition was launched in 1687 the plan of establishing Russian protectorate over the Crimean Khanate had been worked out in Moscow ruling circles. Understanding the hardness of the task after the fail of the first expedition, Golitsyn during the second march towards Perekop in 1689, was ready to make peace with the khan on condition of abolition of sending year payments (kazna) from Moscow to Bakhchysarai. The Crimean side refused to accept it and Golitsyn’s army returned to Russia without any military or political success. In the mid of 1690s as Peter the Great made Russian participation in Lega Sacra more active he simultaneously tried to redirect military campaigns against Ottoman’s fortresses located in estuaries of rivers Don (Azov) and Dnepr. The tsar hoped to build the Black Sea fleet and develop new trade routes in the region but didn’t take into account the situation of the other members of Lega Sacra who sought possibilities to make peace with the Porte, especially after the great victory of Zenta. As a result, Russia made some mistakes during the Carlowitz negotiations, unsuccessfully trying to break them, that brought her only a two-year armistice. The new Russian-Ottoman treaty signed in 1700 included the abolition of kazna (the point of the Golitsyn program towards Crimea) and the annexation of Azov, but in the same year Peter the Great changed the direction of his foreign policy again, launching war against Sweden.
The Peace of Westphalia has been hailed not only for ending the devastating Thirty Years’ War, but for freeing Protestant Europe from the dual threats posed by Habsburg hegemony and Counter-Reformation revanchism. It also lessened the prevalent confessional affinities and animosities between states, thereby enabling them to make more rational, strategic calculations in their pursuit of Realpolitik. But the retreat of Spain also created a more permissive environment for international outlawry and aggression by other European actors, most notably France. When the Turks marched into central Europe, the Austrian Habsburgs’ pursuit of reliable allies was mortgaged by their neighbors’ exposure to multiple security threats of their own. As a result, many Christian states declined to make meaningful contributions because they needed to resist pressure from France, or other predatory states like Sweden, England, Russia or the Ottomans themselves. One exception was the Papacy which was essentially immune to aggression from Catholic France. In the end, a combination of intense Austrian and Papal diplomacy brought together a critical mass of Catholic and Protestant states that were (unlike the Pope) less motivated by Christian religious fervor than by the prospects of advantageous subsidy treaties, easy territorial pickings and martial glory.
This article explores a collection of some 59 letters written by Thomas Coke, the secretary to the Levant Company, to William Paget over the period of 1691 to 1694. Coke’s letters offer a detailed vision into Ottoman decision-making as it unfolded from one day to the next and as it varied across the perspectives of individual Ottoman decision-makers. They challenge longstanding ideas about Ottoman diplomacy, for example the idea that until Carlowitz the Ottomans had only engaged in unilateral diplomacy for short periods of time because of a deep-rooted reluctance to relinquish lands that had once been ruled over by Muslims. Throughout this period, Coke offered to Paget one letter after another full of close detailed accounts of political developments in the capital, ranging from such things as changes in appointments, Ottoman attitudes to war, preparations related to Paget’s arrival, and much more. The rest of this article presents some of the most important aspects of these letters, particularly with regard to what they reveal about Ottoman diplomacy in this critical period of war leading up to the Treaty of Carlowitz.
This chapter will focus on the various peace efforts pursued by the Ottomans in the first two years after the Second Siege of Vienna 1683. In 1684 and 1685 the Ottomans submitted various peace proposals to each member of the Holy League. In the end none of these efforts resulted in the desired peace. What were the main reasons for the failure of Ottoman diplomatic efforts? Some possible answers to this question follow: First, in the few weeks after the Siege of Vienna peace seemed possible. This opportunity was not used by the Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa Pasha because he was focused on revenge for the disgrace. Second, the victories on the battlefields strengthened the faith of the members of the ‘Lega Sacra’ that more victories against the Ottomans were possible. Third, the decision to continue the war against the Ottomans was made easier for the allies because the Ottomans had to fight on more than one front, unlike the members of the ‘Lega Sacra’. Finally, the fact that the European policy of Pope Innocent xi in those years was oriented towards continuing the war against the Ottomans at any price in order to drive the Turks out of Europe forever seems to have played a role in frustrating Ottoman peace efforts.
Based on Ottoman historical works, some reports, and letters, this paper tries to find out, what the Ottomans knew about the men who were the Imperial supreme commanders during the Great War beginning with the siege of Vienne in 1683 and ending with the peace of Karlowitz in 1699. According to these sources the Ottomans knew names, titles, ranks, and functions of Emperor Leopold, almost all supreme commanders, and some other generals. Sometimes, however, their names show special Ottomanized forms, and the titles and ranks attributed to them are not always correct. Very often stereotyped negative epithets are added to the names, telling for example that the commanders and their troops are condemned to hell. They might be characterized as powerful and even successful, but as their religion is inferior to Islam, their fate is considered by Muslims to be deplorable. Details about the commander’s abilities, their role in special situations, or their fate characterize and individualize some of them. The most famous protagonists are mentioned frequently, except Prince Eugene of Savoy, whose role at Zenta is rarely referred to. Veterani and Heißler, however, are acknowledged and praised highly. But, despite their abilities they had been defeated, so that their qualities praise the valour of the Ottomans.