Ever wondered what the Crusades were and why they really happened? This podcast tells the full story of the Crusades from their origins, beginning with the collapse of Byzantium, to the fall of the last Crusader state.
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 1 "Byzantium - The Dying Empire"
In this new mini-series, we will hear about the fall of Byzantine Constantinople in 1453 to the Ottoman Turks. Many people see it as a turning point in history, marking the end of the Middle Ages. But what really happened? Find out here.
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 2 "Seljuks and Ottomans"
In the thirteenth century, the Mongols destroyed the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum in Anatolia. But after the Mongols left, a new Turkish dynasty began to rise to power in western Anatolia. This dynasty was that of the Ottomans.
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 3 "Timur the Lame"
In the fourteenth century, the growing power of the Ottoman Turks seemed unstoppable. But there was one man who checked it. This was Timur the Lame, or Tamerlane, as he was called in Europe. Of mixed Turkish and Mongol descent, he created a vast empire at the end of the fourteenth century that was modelled on the Mongol Empire of the legendary Genghis Khan.
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 4 "The Emperor and the Sultan"
The Ottoman onslaught against Constantinople is getting closer. Two new leaders emerge on either side. Constantine XI Palaiologos, the last Emperor of Byzantium, and the Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II, better known as Mehmet the Conqueror. Both men will go down in history as great heroes - discover why in this podcast.
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 5 "The Call to the West"
With the Ottoman Turks closing in on Constantinople, the Byzantine Emperor Constantine XI Palaiologus made a last desperate appeal to the West for help. But would it be too little and too late?
The Fall of Constantinople Episode 6 "Gunpowder and Cannons"
By 1452, the Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II had decided to launch a huge attack on the ancient city of Constantinople. But as he gathered his army from all over his dominions, he knew that he would need more than soldiers. To breach the ancient walls he would need gunpowder and cannons!
Outstanding Insight into Byzantium and the Crusades.
This is a really special podcast - well written and well-narrated by Nick Holmes who has a pleasant well- modulated speaking voice. His knowledge of Byzantine history is thorough and his understanding of the interrelationships between Byzantium and the various Crusades is clear and unambiguous. For it is a substantial slice of Medieval History.
Nick makes many references to his own book the Byzantine World War and in later episodes to Runciman’s classic History of the Crusades. Runciman’s work - though well-written - is a lengthy read. Nick manages to distil good history from that work and weave it into an intelligent and enjoyable set of podcasts.
When I finish, I plan to relisten to the podcasts since there is a great deal of history to absorb. It’s also inspired me to get Nick’s book and other books about Byzantine history. After all, the interaction of Islam with the west is largely a story of Byzantium and its wavering fortunes.
This is definitely a “must listen” if you’re interested in Byzantium or crusading history.
Essential as an introduction to the formation of the western world as we know now.
Should be taught in schools more often.
Great content and insight