Answer: Mehmed II
Some extra relevant information:
At the young age of 21, the commander who successfully captured Constantinople was none other than Sultan Mehmed II, also known as Mehmed the Conqueror. Mehmed II was the tenth Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, and his capture of Constantinople in 1453 marked a significant turning point in history.
Born in 1432, Mehmed II ascended to the throne in 1451 after his father’s death. Determined to fulfill his dream of conquering Constantinople, he meticulously planned his campaign. Constantinople, known as the capital of the Byzantine Empire, had withstood numerous sieges and attacks throughout its history. However, Mehmed II was determined to change that.
Under his leadership, Mehmed II assembled a powerful, well-equipped army. He utilized new strategies, incorporating advanced siege weaponry and tactics. Mehmed II ordered the construction of massive cannons, including the famous “Basilica,” which was capable of firing gigantic stone projectiles weighing over a ton.
In April 1453, Mehmed II launched his assault on Constantinople. The Byzantine Emperor Constantine XI, aware of the impending siege, prepared his defenses and rallied his troops. The city was heavily fortified, guarded by imposing walls and defended by a strong garrison.
Despite the formidable defenses, Mehmed II’s forces relentlessly attacked the city, employing both military might and psychological pressure. The Ottoman fleet blocked the city’s access to the sea, preventing any potential reinforcements for the Byzantines.
After nearly two months of intense fighting, Mehmed II’s troops breached the city walls on May 29, 1453. The Ottomans stormed Constantinople, overwhelming the Byzantine defenders. Emperor Constantine XI fought valiantly until his death, but the city ultimately fell into Ottoman hands.
The capture of Constantinople by Mehmed II was a turning point in history. It marked the end of the Byzantine Empire, which had endured for over a thousand years since the fall of the Roman Empire. Additionally, Mehmed II’s conquest established the Ottoman Empire as a dominant power in the region, heralding the beginning of a new era.
Mehmed the Conqueror’s achievement at such a young age demonstrated his exceptional military prowess, strategic acumen, and determination. His capture of Constantinople remains a remarkable feat that forever changed the course of history.