The Tudor Society
  • The Battle of Lepanto – 7 October 1571 by Heather R. Darsie

    In 1571, the Ottoman Turks were a proven naval force. Leading up to 1571, the Venetians had attempted to make peace with the Turks to end their expansion through the Mediterranean. Turkish ships would harry the Venetians and, through Barbary pirates, occasionally raid the coasts of France, Spain and Italy. Counter to that, the Christian Knights of St John of Jerusalem effectively behaved as pirates in their attacks and raids on Turkish ships and ports. The Turks eventually attacked and gained control over Rhodes, where the Knights had their base. In 1570, the Turks then turned their attention to Cyprus, a Grecian island in the Mediterranean controlled by the Venetians. After the Venetians refused to give up control of the island, the Turks invaded.

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