Suleiman the Magnificent, the most powerful ruler in the world, was determined to conquer Europe. Only one thing stood in his way: a dot of an island in the Mediterranean called Malta, occupied by the Knights of St. John, the cream of the warriors of the Holy Roman Empire. A clash of civilizations was shaping up the likes of which had not been ...Read MoreSuleiman the Magnificent, the most powerful ruler in the world, was determined to conquer Europe. Only one thing stood in his way: a dot of an island in the Mediterranean called Malta, occupied by the Knights of St. John, the cream of the warriors of the Holy Roman Empire. A clash of civilizations was shaping up the likes of which had not been seen since Persia invaded Greece. Determined to capture Malta and use its port to launch operations against Europe, Suleiman sent an armada and an overwhelming army. A few thousand defenders in Fort St. Elmo fought to the last man, enduring cruel hardships. When they captured the fort the Turks took no prisoners and mutilated the defenders' bodies. Grand Master La Vallette of the Knights reciprocated by decapitating his Turkish prisoners and using their heads to cannonade the enemy. Then the battle for Malta began in earnest: no quarter asked; none given. The Siege of Malta is not merely a gripping tale of brutality, courage, and tenacity, but the saga of two mighty civilizations struggling for domination of the known world.Read Less
This is a great history of a now almost forgotten incident which was, nevertheless, one of the turning points of early modern history. With unequaled bravery a handful of Catholic Knights Hospitalers of St John (now called Knights of Malta), and the courageous inhabitants of Malta held off the mighty Turkish fleet and the militant jihadists and Jannisaries of the Ottoman Empire, and thereby inflicted the first major defeat upon the great Emperor Suleiman the Magnificent. Ernle Bradford brings to life the great leaders on both sides of the conflict and his portrait of the leader of the beseiged knights and citizens, Jean de La Vallete, is extraordinary. The book is out of print but is now more relevant than ever considering the current world situation. If you can obtain a copy by all means buy it.
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