EMBASSY TO TAMERLANE, 1403-1406

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Sinopsis de EMBASSY TO TAMERLANE, 1403-1406

In the year 1400 the princes of Europe sympathetically were much bestirred, fearing the imminent fall of Constantinople and the extinction of the Eastern Empire. The Ottoman Sultan B&aacute,zay&iacute,d (otherwise Bajazet) was already in possession of almost the whole of what subsequently became Turkey in Europe. The Emperor Manuel still was lord of Constantinople, but beyond the city walls possessed a mere strip of territory along the north coast of the Sea of Marmora, and extending to the Black Sea, a strip some fifty miles in length but under thirty in breadth. Four years before (September 1396) an immense composite crusading army under the leadership of the Count of Nevers (a cousin of king Charles VI of France) had marched against the Turks to the support of king Sigismund of Hungary. But the Christians had been completely routed by Sultan B&aacute,yaz&iacute,d at Nicopolis on the lower Danube, an immense number of them had been killed, a lesser number made prisoners (who later had to be ransomed at heavy cost), and Europe in terror, the Emperor Manuel now shut up in Constantinople, all were waiting to learn what the Sultan next would do. From their capital established at Brusa the Turkish Sultans, past and present, had fomented many conspiracies at the Imperial Court. The father of Manuel had been the Emperor John Pal&aelig,ologus (1341‑1391) and Manuel’,s elder brother Andronicus had at an early age been proclaimed Emperor elect.1 In the days of B&aacute,yaz&iacute,d’,s father Sultan Mur&aacute,d (1360 to 1389) his eldest son S&aacute,vaji had made a conspiracy with Andronicus whereby these two young princes had purposed to dethrone their respective fathers. The conspiracy miscarried, S&aacute,vaji was put to death which brought his younger brother B&aacute,yaz&iacute,d later to be Sultan, and Andronicus (in company with his young son John) was shut up in the Constantinople State prison, the celebrated Tower of the Anemas. As a result Manuel his y
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