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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Castrioti

October 17th, 1448 - The Second Battle of Kosovo

Conflict: Ottoman-Hungarian Wars

Combatants: Hungarian vs. Turks

Location: Serbia

Outcome: Turkish victory

On October 16th of 1448, a Hungarian army under the leadership of Janos Hunyadi made a heroic effort against the Turkish army, four times its own size, Murad II. Bohemian and German mercenaries, with handguns, exchanged fire with Turkish Janissaries, using crossbows, at 100 yards and both sides suffered heavy casualties. On the 17th, however, the Hungarian cavalry were broken by the Turks, exposing their center and Hunyadi was forced to withdraw. The Hungarians lost half of their 25,000 troops in the engagement; the Turk lost one-third of 100,000 soldiers.

Murad II by Paolo Veronese

Points of Interest:

  • The defeat at Kosovo left only Albanian George Castrioti (aka Skanderbeg) to contest Ottoman power in the Balkans.

  • Five years later, Constantinople would fall to the Turks marking the end of the Byzantine Empire.

Hunyadi, János by Ferenc Nádasdy

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