Suleiman the Magnificent, sultan of the Ottoman Empire and 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, which was occupied by the Knights of Saint 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 Saint Elmo fought to the last man, enduring cruel hardships. When the Turks captured the fort, they 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 Great Siege 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.
Ernle Bradford (1922–1986) was a prominent British historian specializing in the Mediterranean world and naval history. He served in the Royal Navy for the duration of World War II and later traveled throughout the Mediterranean, living for a while on Malta. He was a BBC broadcaster and magazine editor, as well as the author of many acclaimed books, including biographies on Cleopatra, Hannibal, and Caesar.
©2012 Ernle Bradford (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc
I am an avid eclectic reader.
Ernie Bradford did an excellent job researching and telling this story of the greatest siege in history. A small group of the order of the Knights of Saint John held 3 forts against the might of the Ottoman Empire. At this time the Ottoman's were ruled by their greatest leader Suleiman the Magnificent and wanted Malta so he could control the Mediterranean area. The battle was without quarter and both sides felt they were fighting for the religious beliefs. I have always wanted to visit Malta and stay long enough to see all the sights of historical sights. Bradford gave lots of back ground about the Knights, their armour, the fighting techniques of the time and also the tactics of fort defense. As well as information about the Grand Master La Vallette of the Knights of Saint John. Simon Vance did a great job reading this book. If you like history you will enjoy this book.
The Great Siege - Malta 1565 is an awesome book - well written. I had no idea of the leadership, courage and determination that the defenders displayed during siege. The ruthlessness of the combatants was a reflection of the understanding of both sides that this was an all or nothing endeavor. No quarter was given or expected. Before reading this I did not appreciate the ramifications of the outcome - Europe undoubtedly would look a lot different had the siege succeeded. Simon Vance is one of the Aces of the Audion Book narrators and he does a wonderful job in this book. If you enjoy European History I highly recommend this book
Great material. At too little on this siege written. The writer didn't take too long to tell too little... And not least... Geat narrator
One of the less well-known episodes in a centuries' old struggle for mastery of the Mediterranean and Italy. Told with verve, detail, color, and appreciation for the mind-sets and virtues of the combatants.
The fall of Fort Saint Elmo.
Voice and diction.
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