Sei sulla pagina 1di 14

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro

ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournoblemerchants,whokeptourBailocompanyandgavesupporttohimandtothecity.
TheMegaduke,themostimportantmaninConstantinopleapartfromtheEmperor,wasguardingtheshores
onthesideoftheharbour,andhehadahundredhorsesinreserve,whichwerekeptbyhimsothathecoulduse
themtosendhelpwherevernecessaryinthecity.
Themonkswereguardingaboutamileofthecircuitofthewallsontheseawardside.
AlsotheTurkDorgano,whowasinConstantinopleinthepayoftheEmperor,wasguardingoneofthe
quartersofthecityontheseawardsidewiththeTurksinhispay,whohadpreviouslyrebelledagainsttheirmaster
andsoallthenotablepersonsofConstantinoplewereguardingtheprincipalpointsofthecity,andtherewasa
particularlystrongguardattheChinigo.
Alsoonthisday,thesixthofApril,byorderoftheMostSereneEmperor,weputintobattleorderthethree
galleysfromTanaandthetwolonggalleys,andtheygotunderwayfromtheiranchorageandallwenttogetherto
landinaplacecalledChinigo.Allonboardthesefivegalleys,athousandmenaltogether,disembarkedfullyarmed
andaswellorderedaseveryonecouldhavewished,andeachofthemastersofthegalleyswentwiththecrewofhis
galley,theirbannersflyingbeforethem,andthecaptainsofthegalleyswentaheadofthemasters,andthecaptains
withtheirmenpresentedthemselvesbeforetheMostSereneEmperor,askinghimwhatordershewaspleasedto
givetotheseforces.TheEmperorcommandedthemtogoroundthewallsonthelandwardside,sothatthefaithless
Turks,ourenemies,couldseetheminsuchgoodorder,andseethatthereweremanymeninthecity.Whenthey
hadgoneonceroundthewallsofthecity,oratanyratealongthesideofthewallwheretheenemy'sarmywas,a
distanceofsixmiles,everyonereturnedtothegalleysandputoffhisarmour,andthegalleysreturnedtotheir
anchoragenearPera.Thesetroopsappearedtogivegreatcomforttothoseinthecity,andcausedsomesurpriseto
theenemy.
OntheninthdayofApril,seeingthatneverthelessthefaithlessTurkswouldcomewiththeirfleetandarmy,
togaintheiraccursedintentionofcompletelydestroyingthewretchedcityofConstantinople,preparationsbeganto
bemadeforthisontheharbourside,andsoweputalongtheboomwhichranacrosstheharbournineofthebiggest
shipswhichwerethereandtheseshipsalongthelengthoftheboomstretchedfromConstantinopleasfarasPera
theywerewellarmedandingoodorder,allreadytojoinbattle,andoneasgoodasanother.Theshipsandtheir
masterswereasfollows:
ZorziDoriaofGenoa,2,500botte
ZuanZustigananofGenoa,1,200botte
AshipofAncona,1,000botte
AshipoftheEmperorofConstantinople,1,000botte
ZuanVenierofCandia,800botte
FilamatiofCandia,800botte
GuroofCandia,700botte
GataloxaofGenoa,800botte
AnotherofGenoa,600botte
AbelingierofGenoaof700botte
Intheharbourinsidetheboomthereremainedseventeensquareriggedships,thethreegalleysfromTana,
thetwolightgalleysfromVenice,andfivegalleysoftheEmperorofConstantinople,theselastbeingwithout
weaponsalsomanyshipsweredisarmedandsunk,incaseoffireorbeinghitbycannonfire.Seeingthatwewere
sostrongatsea,wefeltveryconfidentagainstthefleetofthefaithlessTurks,particularlysincewehadtheboom
acrosstheharbour,andalsoatoweronthecityside,thatis,onthesideofConstantinople,andanotheronthePera
side,whichwerebothusefulfordefence.
OntheeleventhofAprilthe

Sultanhadhiscannonplacednearthewalls,bytheweakestpartofthecity,the
soonertogainhisobjective.Thesecannonwereplantedinfourplaces:firstofall,threecannonwereplacednearthe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,andthreeothercannonwereplacednearthePigigate,andtwoattheCressu
gate,andanotherfouratthegateofSanRomano,theweakestpartofthewholecity.Oneofthesefourcannon
whichwereatthegateofSanRomanothrewaballweighingabouttwelvehundredpounds,moreorless,and
thirteenquarteincircumference,whichwillshowtheterribledamageitinflictedwhereitlanded.Thesecondcannon
threwaballweighingeighthundredpounds,andninequarteincircumference.Thesetwocannonwerethelargest
thattheTurkishKhanhad,theothercannonbeingofvarioussizes,fromfivehundredpoundstotwohundred
pounds,andsmallerstill.
OnthetwelfthofApril,betweenthesecondandthirdhours,theTurkishfleetarrivedattheharbourof
Constantinople,andcamerowingonwithdetermination,andwenttotheAnatolianside,becausethelandtherewas
inthehandsoftheTurks,andiftheyhadcomeovertotheConstantinopleside,theywouldhavehadgreatdifficulty
fromourChristianfleet.Attheseventhhouroftheday,thewholeofthefleetcametoanchorattheanchoragecalled
TheColumns,twomilesfromConstantinopleontheBlackSeaside,andanchoredinthatplacewithmany
vehementcries,andsoundingofcastanetsandtambourines,soastofillourfleetandthoseinthecitywithfear.This
Turkishfleetwasmadeupof145ships,galleys,fuste,parandarieandbregantini,ofwhichtwelvewerefully
equippedgalleys,seventytoeightylargefuste, twentytotwentyfiveparandarie,andtherestbregantinialsoin
thisTurkishfleettherewasoneshipofabout200botte,whichcamefromSinopolisloadedwithstonesfor
cannonballs,hurdlesandtimber,andothermunitionsfortheirarmyofthesortnecessaryformakingwar.Whenall
thisTurkishfleethadanchoredbytheColumns,itmadenomovementthroughtherestoftheday,andeveryone
stayedquietbutweChristians,notknowingwhatourenemymightdo,stoodtoourarmsthroughoutthedayand
thenight,andtheshipsandthegalleystoo,andtheboomlyinginthesea,waitinghourafterhourforthemtocometo
attackus,whiletheirfleetstayedattheColumns.Andsoasystemwasarrangedtopreventourenemiesfrom
makingasuddenattackbynightorbyday,anditwasdecidedtokeeptwomeninturnonthewallsofPera,totake
noteiftheTurkishfleetbegantomovetowardsoursandifthesewatchmensawasinglefusta orgalleyor
bregantinomoveorsignsofanyfusta beingabouttodoso,atoncetheycametotellthecaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,becausehehadbeenputinchargeoftheharbour.Whennewswasbroughttohimofthemovementofany
ships,atoncethecaptainhadthebattletrumpetsounded,andeveryonesprangtoarms,readytojoinbattleand
thoseonboardtheshipswhichwerebytheboomstoodtotheirarmsalso,andwewaitedeveryhourforthe
Turkishfleettocometoattackus.Soeachdaywewereinthisdifficulty,andingreatfear,asIhavesaidpreviously,
havingbydayandbynighttostandtoourarms,andyettheirfleetnevermoved,orifagalleydidmove,itwentin
thedirectionofAnatalia,ortowardsthemouthoftheBlackSea,togototheirnewlybuiltcastleandtheirfleet
nevercametoattackus,butmadeusstandtoourarmsfromfearofthem,fromthetwelfthofApriluntilthetwenty
ninthofMay,alldayandallnight.
FromthetwelfthdayofApriluntiltheeighteenthdayofthesamemonththerewaslittlemovementbyseaor
byland,excepttheusualbombardmentbydayandbynight,andsomeskirmishingwhichtheTurksengagedin
regularlywiththoseonthewallsofthecity.TheyfoundtheTurkscomingrightupunderthewallsandseekingbattle,
particularlythejanissaries,whoaresoldiersoftheTurkishSultannoneofthemareafraidofdeath,buttheycameon
likewildbeasts,andwhenoneortwoofthemwerekilled,atoncemoreTurkscameandtookawaythedeadones,
carryingthemontheirshouldersasonewouldapig,withoutcaringhowneartheycametothecitywalls.Ourmen
shotatthemwithgunsandcrossbows,aimingattheTurkwhowascarryingawayhisdeadcountryman,andbothof
themwouldfalltothegrounddead,andthentherecameotherTurksandtookthemaway,nonefearingdeath,but
beingwillingtolettenofthemselvesbekilledratherthansuffertheshameofleavingasingleTurkishcorpsebythe
walls.
OntheeighteenthdayofthismonthofApril,agreatmultitudeofTurkscametothewalls.Thishappenedat
aboutthesecondhourofthenight,andtheskirmishlasteduntilaboutthesixthhourofthenight,andmanyTurks
diedinthefighting.Whentheycameitwasdark,andsoourmenwerenotexpectingtheirattackandIcannot
describethecrieswithwhichtheycameatthewalls,andthesoundofcastanets,sothatthereseemedtobeeven
moreTurksthanreallywerethere,andthesoundcarriedasfarasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.At
thesoundofthisgreatuproarthesorrowfulandgrievingemperorbegantomourn,fearinglesttheTurksshouldwish
tomakeageneralattackthatnight,becauseweChristianswerenotyetreadytowithstandit,andthiscausedhim
greatsorrow.ButtheEternalLorddidnotwishtoallowsogreatascandalatthistime,andinstead,atthesixthhour
ofthenight,acalmfelloverallthefighting,withgreatshametotheheathen,andalsototheirgreatloss,because
therewerekilledofthematleasttwohundredormore,andbythegraceofGodnoneofourmenwerekilled,or
evenwounded.
OnthetwentiethdayofApril,atthethirdhour,therecameinsightfourlargeships,whichcameupthe
DardanellesfromtheWest,andtheywerebelievedtobefromGenoa,comingtoConstantinopletobringhelptothe
cityandalsotheycamebyvirtueofanorderwhichtheMostSereneEmperorofConstantinoplegavetothe
Genoese,thateveryGenoeseshipthatcametothehelpofConstantinople,

whateversortofmerchandiseitcarried,
shouldbefreed completelyfromanycustomsdutyduetotheEmperor.Thesefourships camesailingalongwith
afreshsoutherlywind,andwerealreadycomingclosetotheanxiouscity,butasitpleasedGod,whentheywere
verynearConstantinople,suddenlythewinddropped,andtheyfoundthemselvesinaflatcalm.Astheylay
becalmed,thefleetofMahometBeytheTurk,thatenemyoftheChristianfaith,wasstirredintogreatactivity,and
fromwhereitwasanchoredbytheColumnsitcamewithshoutsandsoundingofcastanetstowardsthefourships,
rowingatfullspeed,likemenexpectingtoconquertheirenemies.ButtheirprayerstotheirMahometwerenot
enoughtogivethemvictory,and

our EternalGodheardtheprayersofusChristians,andwewonthis battle,as


youshallhearfromwhatfollows.
Asthefourshipscamealongundersailandwerebecalmed,theTurkishfleetbegantomoveandcamein
theirdirection.TheTurkishadmiralwasthefirsttoattackwithgreatenergythesternoftheshipoftheEmperorof
Constantinople,andalltherestofthefleetattackedashardastheycouldamongallfouroftheshipsbutthegalley
oftheadmiraloftheTurksnevermoveditsramfromthesternoftheMostSereneEmperor,thatisfromhisship,
pressingithard,withalltherestoftheTurkishfleetpressinghardalsoandofthesefourshipsonehadfivegalleys
aroundit,anotherhadthirtyfuste,andanotherhadfortyparandarie,sothattheDardanelleswerecoveredwith
armedboats,andthewatercouldhardlybeseenforthevesselsoftheseevildogs.Thebattlelastedbetweentwo
andthreehours,andneithersidewasvictorious,butourfourChristianshipswongreaterhonour,becausetheyhad
hadontopofthemahundredandfortyfiveTurkishships,andhadsurvivedtheirattack.Aftertheyhadfoughtinthis
fashion,beingbecalmed,theyhadtoanchor,andtheydidthisnearthecityofConstantinople,thoseinthefleetbeing
veryfearfullesttheyshouldbeattackedbynight.Butthenightwasadarkone,andwetookstepstohelptheships:
CabrielTrivixancaptainofthetwolightgalleyswassent,withthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,andtheywent
outsidetheboomoftheharbourofConstantinoplewithgreatactivityandsoundingoftrumpets,andmuchshouting
fromthecrews,togivetheimpressiontoourenemythatitwasamuchlargerfleetthanreallywasthere:theyhad
twoorthreetrumpetsoneachgalley,sothatthereseemedtobeatleasttwentygalleys,andwhentheTurksheard
thisnoise,theywereveryfrightened,andourtwogalleystowedthefourshipssafelyinsidetheharbourof
Constantinople.TheTurkishfleetofitsownaccordstayedinitsplaceattheColumns,sincetheTurksthoughtthat
thewholeofourfleetmighthavesetouttogotofindthem.
Thenextday,thetwentyfirstofApril,theTurkishSultanmovedfromhispositionbythewallsof
Constantinople,androdewithabouttenthousandhorse,andcametotheColumnswherehisfleetwas,toseeand
findoutthereasonwhytheadmiralofhisfleethadnotbeenablewithsomanyvesselstocaptureamerefourships.
WhentheTurkreachedthefleet,bemadetheadmiralcameashoreatonceandcomebeforehim,andthenthe
faithlessTurk,fullofangeragainsttheadmiral,said,"TraitortotheFaithofMahomet,andtraitortome,yourmaster,
whywereyouunable,withalltheshipswhichyouhadunderyourcommand,tocapturefourChristianships,when
theywereeasytofight,beingheldbyadeadcalm?Ifyoucouldnottakethem,howdoyouexpecttotakethefleet
whichisintheharbourofConstantinople?"
HisadmiralrepliedtotheSultan,"MyLord,lookwithyoureyes,andthenyouwillbeabletobelievewith
yourheart,andIwouldbegyou,donotrushintoafuryyouseewithyourandfifteenfollowersoftheLawof
Mahomet,andyouknow,andallcouldsee,thatwiththeramofmygalleyIneverletgoofthestemofthe
Emperor'sship,fightingfiercelyallthetime,andwhathappenedisplaintotheeye,themenofminewhoaredead,
andalsotherearemanyothersontheothergalleys,andonthefuste andparandariewithoutnumber,and
bregantinisunk,andformypartIhavetriedashardasIpossiblycould,andso,myLord,Iwouldbegyouto
pardonme,andnotbeenragedagainstme."
TheTurk,likeamanpossessedandfullofevilthoughtsandbadlydisposedtowardshisadmiral,without
furtheradosaidatfirsttohim,"Traitor,Iwillmyselfcutoffyourhead."Theadmiralwasablebyusingthebest
wordsathiscommandtoprevailuponhimtosparehislife,andheescapedthewildangerofhismaster.Butthe
Turkdeprivedhimofhisofficeofadmiralofthefleet,andwhenhehadbeendeprivedofhispost,therecame
forwardthesonofthemanwhohadbeenadmiralatthetimeofPieroLoredan,whenthispresentSultan'sfatherwas
defeated,andhesaidtotheTurk,"MyLord,ifyougivemethecommandofyourfleet,whichisabouttoattackthe
Christians,IpromisenowtogiveyouthewholefleetoftheChristianssafelyintoyourhands,andtakerevengefor
myfatherandifwhatIhavesaidtoyouisnottrue,nowIsaytoyouthatwithoutsayinganymoreyoumayhavemy
headcutoffinyourpresence."TheTurkapprovedofhiswords,andmadehimadmiralincommandofhiswhole
fleet,andgavehimthebatoninhishand,andgrantedtohimthatheshouldhaveasmuchauthorityashismasterto
makeandtocanceltheappointmentsofhiscaptains,asisgenerallydone.
Nowweleavetheseaandcometothedeedsthatweredoneatthecitywalls.Onthisday,thetwentyfirst
ofApril,therewasacontinuousbombardmentalldayofthewallsbySanRomano,andatowerwasrazedtothe
groundbythebombardment,withseveralyardsofwall.Thiswasthetimewhenthoseinthecity,andalsothosein
thefleet,begantobeafraid,sincewefearedthattheyintendedtomakeageneralattackonthatverydayitwas
generallybelievedthatTurkishturbanswouldsoonbeseeninsidethecitybutourmercifulLordJesusChrist,whois
fullofcompassion,waswillingtodelaytheend,sothattheprophecymightbefulfilled,andbroughttopass,the
prophecywhichwasmadebySaintConstantinesonofSaintHelen,whowasEmperorofConstantinople.Nowthat
suchagreatpartofthewallwasdestroyedbythebombardment,everyoneconsideredhimselflost,seeingthatina
fewdaystheyhadbrokendownsuchafinestretchofwallinfact,Itellyou,thatifonthisdaytheTurkshadbeen
willingtomakeanattackonthewallswithonlytenthousandmen,withoutanydoubttheywouldhavesucceededin
gettingintothecity,andwouldhavetakenit,andwewouldhavelostitverycheaply.Butitusuallyhappensthatin
everypartoftheworldtherearevaliantmenfullofcourageandsotherewerefoundafewmeninthecityof
Constantinople,Venetiangentlemen,whoweremuchmorefullofspiritthantheGreekswere,andtheVenetiansset
aboutmakinggoodandstrongrepairswheretheywereneededatthebrokenwalls.Theserepairsweremadewith
barrelsfilledwithstonesandearth,andbehindthemtherewasmadeaverywideditchwithadamattheendofit,
whichwascoveredwithstripsofvineandotherlayersofbranchesdrenchedwithwatertomakethemsolid,sothat
itwasasstrongasthewallhadbeen.TherewasnoneedtobeafraidoftheTurksanylongerinthatplace.
ButstilltheseevilTurksdidnotceaseatanyhourofthedayorthenightbombardingthegatecalledSan
Romano,wheretherepairshadbeenmade,withalltheirforce:theirwholestrengthwasconcentratedonthisgate,
withshotsfromtheirgreatcannon,whichhadacircumferenceoffifteenpalme,fromtheirothercannon,andalso
fromgreatnumbersofguns,countlessbowsandmanyhandgunswhichcontinuallyfiredatthosewhoweremaking
therepairs.Thegroundwascompletelyinvisible,beingcoveredwithTurks,particularlythejanissaries,whoarethe
fiercestofalltheTurkishsoldiers,andgreatnumbersoftheSultan'sslaves,whocouldberecognisedbytheirwhite
turbans,whiletheordinaryTurksworeredturbans,andarecalledaxapi.Onthisdaynomovementstookplace
elsewhere.
OnthetwentysecondofApriltheSultantookthought,andsawthathecoulddonodamageonthe
landwardside,althoughhehadtriedwithallhisforce,andsotheevilpaganconsidered,andmadeaplantosend
partofhisfleet,whichwasattheColumns,insidetheharbourofConstantinople,togainhisevilintentionandsothat
youmayknowhowthisdogcarriedouthisplan,Ishalltellyouasfollows?Sinceheintendedtocapture
Constantinoplecompletely,lieneededtohavehisfleetinsidetheharbour.ItwasanchoredattheColumns,twomiles
fromthecity,andhemadeallthecrewscomeonshore,andclearthewholeofthehillabovethecityofPera,
beginningfromtheshore,thatis,bytheColumnswherethefleetwas,andontotheharbour,adistanceofthree
miles.Andwhentheyhadmadealevelway,theTurksputdownagreatnumberofrollerswherethewayhadbeen
levelled,theserollersbeingwellgreasedwithfat,becauseheplannedtobegindraggingsomeofhisfleetintoour
harbour.Theybeganwithsomesmallfuste whichwereputontherollers,andwithagreatnumberofTurksthey
begantopullafusta andpulleditinaveryshorttimeintothebasinofPera.AndwhentheTurkssawthatthisidea
wasworkingwell,theywentondraggingmoreofthesesmallfuste, whichwereoffifteenbanksofoarsuptotwenty
andeventwentytwobanks.Butnoonewouldeverhavethoughtitpossiblethatdogssuchastheseshoulddrag
thesefuste overthehill,bringingacrossasmanyasseventytwointotheharbourofConstantinopleandsettlingthem
intheharbourinthebasinofPera,thereasonforthisbeingthattheTurkswereongoodtermswiththeGenoese.
Whenalltheseventytwofuste wereinthebasin,theymadethemselvesstrongthere,beingwellarmedandwell
orderedineveryway.
Whenthoseinourfleetsawthefuste,

youmayhesurethattheyweregreatlyafraid,becausetheyfearedthat
onenighttheywould cometoattackourfleet,togetherwiththefleetwhichwasattheColumns,becauseourships
wereinsidetheboom,andtheTurkishfleetwasbothinsideandoutsidetheboom,andbythisdescriptionitcanbe
understoodhowgreatthedangerwasalsowewereafraidoffire,incasetheycametoburnourshipswhichwere
lyingattheboom,andthoseofusontheshipswereforcedtostandtoourarmsdayandnightingreatfearofthe
Turks.WeontheshipsalsodecidedtokeeponelightgalleyatthepointofPeraasanadvanceguard,incasethe
fleetattheColumnsmoved.Whenthisgalleysawthefleetmoving,atonceitcametoinformAluvixeDiedo,the
captaininchargeoftheships,andimmediatelyeveryonewentarmedtohispostbutthishappenedonlyafewtimes,
becausetheTurkswereafraidtocomeunpreparedtotheboom,and,ventureonsuchanundertakingastofight
againstthenumberofourshipswhichwerethere.TheTurkswerethinkingonlyofmakinganightattackbutour
EternalGodwhotookpityonusChristiansdidnotwishsuchanevilthingtohappenatthistime,andputitintothe
heartsofusChristiansthatweshouldattackthem,andyoushallseelaterhowweattackedthepagans,althoughour
attackdidnotfalloutaswewished.
OnthetwentythirdofApril,actionbegantobetakenquicklyoverthequestionoftheTurkishfleetwhich
hadbeenmovedoverthehillsintotheharbourofConstantinopleandsoonthisdayweheldacounciloftheTwelve
intheChurchofSantaMariainConstantinople,toundertakethetaskofgoingtoburnthefleetoftheTurkswhich
wasinthebasinofPera.Itwasputtothevoteandagreedthatsuchanattemptshouldbemade,althoughitshould
beunderstoodthattherewasmuchargumentoverthebestwayofdoingit,andeachmemberofthecouncilgavehis
opinion.Someofthemwantedustomoveallourfleetfromtheharbourinfulldaylight,alltheshipsandallthe fuste,
andmakeafullscaleattackagainsttheirfleet,andnotsetfiretothemotherswantedalandforcetogoandattack
theirtentsonland,whichwereguardingtheirfleet,anduseonlytwolightgalleysonthewater.JacomoCoco,who
wasmasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,gavehisopinionalso,andeveryoneagreedtotrytoburntheTurkishfleet,
andthisattemptledtotheterribleeventswhichfollowed,asyoushallhear.
OnthetwentyfourthofApril,JacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,tooktwoshipsofaboutfive
hundredbotte each,andtheypackedsacksofcottonandwoolaroundthemsothatitwouldbeimpossiblefor
gunfire,howeverheavy,todamagethem.Whenthesetwoshipshadbeenmadeready,theycouldnotattackthe
fleetwithouthelpfromthegalleysorfuste, andsincetheshipscouldnotgowithouthelpfromthegalleys,twolight
galleyswereprepared,andeachlargegalleyarmedafusta oftheEmperoroftwentyfourbanks,andeachship
armedoneofitslargeboats.Whenthewholeofthisfleethadbeenmadereadytoattempttosetfiretotheshipsof
theenemy,theorderwasgiventhatatthefirsthourofthenighteveryoneshouldbepreparedwiththeirvessels,
readytomaketheattackatmidnight,andatthehourofmidnighteveryonecameonboardthegalleyofAluvixe
Diedo,thecaptainoftheharbour,andthereitwasdebatedwhetherornottomakethisattempt.Themajoritywasin
favourofmakingtheattackatmidnightandsettingfiretotheTurkishfleetthere,assoonastheattackwasmade.At
thispointtheGenoeseofPera,enemiesoftheChristianfaith,cametohearofourplantosetfiretothefleetatonce
thePodesthofPerasenttwoofhisGenoeseasambassadorstotheSultan,whowasatSanRomanobythewallsof
ConstantinopleandinthediscussionwhichtheGenoesebeganonthegalleyofthecaptain,thetreacherousdogsof
Genoesesaid,"Mastercaptain,youshouldnotmakethisattemptalonetonight,butifyouwaitonemorenight,we
GenoeseofPeraofferourcompanionshiptoyou,fourthebetterburningoftheirfleet."Whenthecaptainheard
theseoffers,hewasquitewillingtowaitforanothernightandwhentheGenoesesawthatitwasday,havingtheir
pactwiththeTurks,theyopenedoneofthegatesofPeraandsentamanouttotheTurks,calledFaiuzo,andthis
FaiuzocametotheSultan'stentandtoldhimhow,thepreviousnight,theVenetianshadmadethemselvesreadyto
goandsetfiretothefleetinthebasinofPera.WhentheSultanheardthis,hegaveheartythankstothisambassador
sentbythepeopleofPera,andsenthimbackstraightaway.Afterhehadgone,theSultanatoncesentagreat
numberofmenwithgunstohisfleetinthebasin,andbesidesthegunshehadtwocannonplacedclosetothebeach,
andtwoothercannonontheothersideofthebasin,andallaroundthebasinwaswellprotectedbyhomes,which
couldnotbeharmedbyshotsorbolts,sothattheyweresafelydefendedandthistreacherywascommittedbythe
accusedGenoeseofPera,rebelsagainsttheChristianfaith.
Fromthetwentyfourthtothetwentyeightofthismonth,wewaitedtomakethisattempt,whichIbelieveto
bethewillofGod,whowishedittohappeninthiswaytopunishthesinsofsomeofthosewhowentandyoushall
seefromwhatfollowstheterriblethingwhichhappened,rememberingthatweVenetiansknewnothingofthe
treacheryofthewickedGenoese.
OnthetwentyeighthofApril,inthenameofourMasterJesusChrist,itwasdecidedtomakethisattemptto
burnthefleetofthefaithlessTurks.Twohoursbeforedaybreak,inthenameoftheHolySpirit,thetwoshipsleftthe
harbour,theirsidespaddedwithsacksofwoolandcotton,andtogetherwiththemtherewasthegalleyofCabriel
Trivixan,andthegalleyofZacariaGrionitheknight,bothofthemarmedseagoingships,andtherewerethreefuste
oftwentyfourbankseach,thesefuste beingmannedbythethreemastersofthegalleysofRomaniawiththeir
crews,themastersbeingthefollowing:SilvestrioTrivixan,JeruolemoMorexiniandJacomoCoco.
Alsoanumberofbregantiniwerearmedbythemastersoftheshipsandinsomeofthemtherewerepitch
andbrushwoodandgunpowder,sothattheycouldbesetonfireandsenttowardstheTurkishfleet.Theorderwas
giventhattheshipsshouldgoahead,becausetheycouldstanduptocannonfire.ButJacomoCoco,masterofthe
galleyofTrebizond,wasledbyhiscourageandhisevilfatetowanttobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheirfleet,
towinhonourinthisworld.AsallourfleetwasapproachingthebasinwheretheTurkishfleetwasanchored,the
shipsshouldhavegoneaheadbutsinceashiphadonlyfortyrowersoneachside,andsocouldnotgoasquicklyas
agalley,JacomoCocomasterofthegalleyofTrebizond,likeamaneagertowinhonourinthisworld,wouldnot
waitfortheshipstobefirsttoattack,andhewantedtobethefirsttostrikeablowagainsttheTurkishfleet.Sohe
begantorowatfullspeed,andheadedforthefleet,andwhenhewasneartheTurkstheyopenedfirewithoneof
theircannon,andtheshotfellnearthepoopofthevesselwithoutdoinganydamagethentheyfiredagain,andit
landedinthemiddleofthefustaandwentrightthroughitanditcouldnothavestayedafloatlongenoughtosayten
paternosters,butwentstraighttothebottomwiththemenwhowereonit.Whenallofussawitsink,wewerefullof
sorrowforthem,butcouldnothelptheminanyway.Themostnotablepersonsonthefustathatwassunkwere:
JacomoCoco,themasterAntoniodaCorfu,partnerAndreadaRuodo,masterMarinGebelin,mate,Polo
CataniomateAndreadall'Aqua,mateAndreaSteco,mateZuanMarangon,crossbowmanZuandeChirato,
crossbowmanZuansonofNicolodaCataro,crossbowmanNicoloDandro,crossbowmanNicoloGulias,
crossbowmanLioFoxon,crossbowmanRenaldodaFerara,crossbowmanTroilodeGrezi,crossbowmanZorzi
daTrau,crossbowmanBaiardoGradenigo,crossbowmanStefanodeSardaia,crossbowmanandtherewere
seventytwooarsmen.Allthesewentdownwiththefustaandwerealldrowned,mayGodhavemercyonthem.
Afterthefustahadgonetothebottom,thoseonthelightgalleysdidnotatfirstrealisethattheirprotection
wasgone,andwentonfighting,andthoughtthatthefustawasfollowingbehind,thinkingthatallwasgoingwell,
becausetheyhadnotseenitgotothebottom.Theycouldnothaveseenitsink,becausetherewassomuchsmoke
fromthecannonandfromthegunsthatitwasimpossibletoseeanything,andtheairwasfullofcriesfromoneside
ortheother,sothattheycouldnotbelievewhathadhappened.AsCabrielTrivixan'sgalleywenton,suddenlythe
Turkishdogsfiredtwocannonandhitthegalleyinthemiddlegoingfromonesidetotheother,andbecausebelow
deckinthegalleythereweretwowoundedmen,thesetwomenatoncepluggeduptheholeswithcloaks,sothatit
remainedabovewater,althoughitwashalfsubmerged,andtheyrowedashardastheycould,andfinallyreached
theharbourwheretheiranchoragewas.Whentheotherfuste, whichshouldhavebeenattacking,sawhowbadly
thingsweregoing,theydecidedtoturnbackandanchorwheretheywerebefore,andourplanfordealingwithour
faithlessenemywasunabletobeaccomplished.SotheTurkswonthisvictory,andweChristianswereweeping
bitterly,andsorrowinggreatlyfortheunfortunateswhohadbeendrowned,mayGodhavemercyuponthemall,and
wewereweepingforfear,lesttheTurksshouldsnatchavictoryagainstuswiththeirfleet,sincewerealisedthatif
theTurkshadgivenbattlethatday,weshouldallhavebeentakenwithoutanydoubt,bothonseaandonland,
becausewewereallovercomewithfearbutourEternalGodwishedtopostponethecaptureofthecity.Butwhat
didtheheathendo?Theywentwiththeirseventytwofuste againstthetwoshipsthatwerepaddedwithsacksof
woolandshouldhaveattackedtheirfleet,thesetwoshipsbeinganchoredclosebytheTurkishfleet.Theywere
anchoredonlybecausetheywereexpectinghelpfromusChristians,butitwascompletelyimpossibletohelpthem,
becauseweshouldhavebeencapturedstraightawaybytheTurkishfuste. WhentheTurkssawtheirgoodfortune,
theymadeplans,andwentwiththeirwholefleetandattackedthesetwoshipsvigorously,andaterribleandviolent
battletookplace.Soloudweretheshoutsofthesedogsthatitseemedaveritableinfernothereweremissilesand
arrowswithoutnumber,andfrequentcannonshotsandgunfire.Thisbattlewiththetwoshipslastedmorethanan
hourandahalf,andneitherofthetwosidescouldwin.Ourfleetreturnedtoitsanchorage,andtheseventytwo
fustereturnedtotheirbasin.Nothingelsehappenedonthisday,atseaoronland,exceptthatthereweregreat
celebrationsintheTurkishcampbecausetheyhadsunkthefusta ofJacomoCoco.Thiswastheoutcomeofthe
treacheryoftheGenoese,enemiesoftheChristianfaithandtheGenoesecommittedthisbetrayaloftheChristiansto
showthemselvesfriendlytotheTurkishSultan.
OnthetwentyninthofApril,becauseJacomoCoco,masterofthegalleyofTrebizond,hadgonedownwith
thefusta,amasterofthegalleyhadtobeappointedinhisplace,andsoAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleys,made
DolfinDolfinmasterofthegalleyofTrebizondinplaceofJacomoCoco,mayGodhavemercyonhim.ThisDolfin
DolfinwasguardingthecitygatecalledthePalacegate,whichwasastrongoneandwellguarded.Helefthis
positionthere,andwenttohispostonthegalley,andZuaneLoredanstayedatthePalacegateinhisplace.Forthe
restofAprilnothinghappenedbyseaoronland,exceptagreatdealofskirmishingandcannonfiredirectedagainst
thewalls,whichdidnotceasebydayorbynight.Therewerecontinualattacksonthewallsbyland,puttingthecity
inperpetualdanger,andweinsidemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandstakesandearthwhereneeded,sothatthey
wereasstrongasproperwalls,astheyhadbeenatfirst,andcannonshotscouldnotharmthem.
OnthefirstofMay,andonthesecond,therewasnoactivitybyseaoronland,exceptforthecontinual
bombardmentandskirmishingandmuchshoutingaccordingtothecustomoftheTurks.Thecitywasingreat
distressbecauseofagrowinglackofprovisions,particularlyofbread,wineandotherthingsnecessarytosustainlife.
OnthethirdofMayaplanwasmadetoplanttwofairlylargecannonbyoneofthewatergatesnearthe
cannonofthefleetinthebasin,thesameonesthatsankthefusta,andsoourcannonbombardedtheTurkishfuste
andgavethemsomediscomfortbytheirfire.WhentheTurkssawthatourcannonweresinkingtheirfuste,andalso
thatmanyoftheirmenwerebeingkilledbyourshots,theydecidedtopreventourcannonfrombeingabletoharm
themtheyplacedthreelargecannonneartheirfleetoffuste,whichwerenearours,andkeptupacontinuous
bombardmentdayandnight,andcausedmuchdamageherebecausethecannonweresoclosetoeachother.This
cannonfireonbothsideslastedabouttendaysbothdayandnightcontinuously,butneithersidecouldbeputoutof
action,becauseourcannonwerewithinthewalls,andtheirswerewellprotectedwithbreastworks,andthedistance
thecannonhadtocarrywashalfamile.Duringthisviolentfighting,theMostSereneEmperorConstantine
saidtoourcaptains:"CaptainsandnoblesofVenice,youseeclearlythatyourSignoriaofVeniceisnotsendinga
fleettohelpmeandmyunfortunatecityandsoitwillbeagoodthingtomakereadytosendagripointhedirection
ofNegropont,tomeetyourVenetianfleet."AndatonceonthethirdofMayabregantinowasequippedwith
twelvemen,togooutthroughtheDardanellesasfarasthearchipelago,andthereseeiftheycouldseeanysignof
ourfleetandiftheyfoundit,theyweretotellitscaptainJacomoLoredantocomequicklytoConstantinople,
becausethecitywasstillbeingheldstronglybytheChristians,andtocomecheerfullywithoutanyfearoftheTurkish
fleet.Thebregantinoleftonthethirdofthemonthinthemiddleofthenight,andwhenitwentoutsidetheharbour
boom,allthemenonboardweredressedasTurks,andtheyraisedasensigntheflagoftheTurkishSultan,andin
thenameofGodtheywentsailingonfreelywithoutanydifficulty,andwentasfarasthearchipelago,andcouldsee
nothingofourfleetoranyplacewheretheymighthavebeen.Whenthesailorsonthegriposawthattherewasno
signofourfleet,theydiscussedwhattheyshoulddo,andtookdifferentsides,andoneofthemsaidtotherest,"My
brothers,youseeclearly,thatwhenweleftConstantinopleageneralattackbytheTurkswasexpectedatany
moment,andyouseethatthecitywillbecompletelyoverrunbythefaithlessTurks,becauseweleftitpoorly
suppliedwithmenofactionandso,mybrothers,IsaythatweshouldgoasquicklyaspossibletosomeChristian
land,becauseIknowverywellthatbythistimetheTurkswillhavecapturedConstantinople."Hiscompanionson
thebregantinoansweredandsaidtohim,"Butsee,brother,theEmperorhassentustodothisthing,whichwehave
done,andsowewishtoreturntoConstantinoplewhetheritisinthehandsoftheTurksoroftheChristians,and
whetherwegotodeathortolife,letusgoonourway."Andsotheydid,andreturnedtoConstantinoplesafeand
soundandfoundthecitystillbeingheldbytheEmperor.Whentheyreachedthecity,theymadetheirreporttothe
Emperor,sayingthattheyhadnotfoundtheVenetianfleet.AtthispointtheMostSereneEmperorbegantoweep
bitterlyforgrief,becausetheVenetianshadnotsenthelpandwhentheEmperorsawthishedecidedtoputhimself
inthehandsofourmostmercifulLordJesusChrist,andofHisMotherMadonnaSaintMary,andofSaint
Constantine,DefenderofhisCity,forthemtoguardit,"SincethewholeofChristendomhasbeenunwillingtohelp
meagainstthisfaithlessTurk,theenemyofChristendom."
OnthefifthofMay,thewickedandevilTurkswentandplacedgreatcannononthetopofthehillabove
Pera,andwiththesecannontheybegantofireoverPeraatourfleet,whichlaybytheboom.Theycontinuedthis
bombardmentforseveraldays,firingstonesoftwohundredpoundsweighteach,andthethirdshotwhichwasfired
senttothebottomaGenoeseshipofthreehundredbutte,whichwasloadedwithsilk,waxandothergoodstothe
valueoftwelvethousandducats,anditwentstraighttothebottom,sothatneitherthemastheadnorthehullofthe
shipappeared,andanumberofmenonboardweredrowned.WhentheTurkssawthisshipsinkasaresultoftheir
cannonfire,becausetheyhadsunkitatonlythethirdshot,theybegantofeelveryconfident,andthoughtthatina
fewdaystheywouldhavesunkthewholeoftheChristianfleetwiththeircannon.Butwhenthedamagewhichthe
cannonweredoingbecameclearinourfleet,wedecidedtounfastentheharbourboom,withtheintentionofmoving
onlytheships,andthesemovedclosetothewallsofPerasothatcannonfirecouldnotharmthem,beingtenships,
andourgalleysdidthesame.WhiletheseshipsandgalleyswerehuggingthewallsofPeratheTurkskeptuptheir
bombardment.Greatdamagewasdoneandthementherewereinfearoftheirlives,becauseeveryshotcaused
somecasualtiesonourgalleys,someshotskillingasmanyasfourmen,otherstwo,andhardlyasingleonefailingto
findavictimastheysmashedintothegalleysandtheships.Thisbombardmentlastedforseveraldays,andaltogether
didgreatharm.AfterwardstheTurksmovedthemaway,andputthemonapointoppositeapartofConstantinople
calledtheChinigo,andheretheykeptupaheavycannonfire,butthanksbetoGod,thisdidnoharm.Afterthisthe
Sultanhadthemtakenawayfromthereandbroughtthemupwiththeotherstobombardthecitywalls.
OnthesixthofMay,neitherduringthedaynorduringthepreviousnightdidanythinghappenworth
mentioning,exceptfortheincessantbombardmentofthecitywalls,andtheusualcriesandsoundingofcastanetsto
frightenthepeopleofthecity.
OntheseventhofMay,atthefourthhourofthenight,therecameunderthewallsofthecityaboutthirty
thousandTurksinverygoodorderbringinganumberoframswiththeintentionoftreacherouslyenteringthecity,
becausewedidnotexpectanattacktotakeplace.ButtheEternalLordgavehelpandstrengthtoourmen,andthey
bravelydrovethemback,withgreatcursingandheavylossesontheirpart,andmanyofthemwerekilled,agreat
numberinfact.
Thesamenightweheardontheshipsthewildshoutingwhichthesecursedpagansmadearoundthewallsof
thepoorcity,shoutingwhichtrulywasheardasfarasthecoastofAnatolia,twelvemilesfromtheTurkishcamp,
andwhenweheardit,wewerequitesurethatnowtheyweretryingtomakeageneralattack,andwiththesoundof
theircastanetsandtheirtambourines,itwasathingnottobebelieved,exceptbythosewhohearditandasIhave
saidpreviously,sinceweintheshipsbelievedthattheyweregoingtomakeanattackthatnight,atoncewestoodto
ourarmsandallbravelywenttoourposts,intheshipsandonthegalleys.Thelandbattlelasteduntiltheseventh
hourofthenight,nomorethanthreehours.ButtheTurkishfleetshowednoinclinationtomove,becausetheywere
afraidofourfleetwhichlayattheboomreadytomeetthemsonothingelsehappenedatseathatday,andonland
therewasnofurthermovementfortherestofthenight.ButassoonastheTurkshadgoneawayfromtheplace
wherethefightinghadbeen,andbecausetheyrealizedthattheyhadnotbeenabletodoanything,theymadeanother
plan,andwentwithgreatshoutsandthrewfireatthegateofthepalace,andquicklysetitalight,andassoonasit
caughtfire,ourmenranthere,andbeatthemback,andblockedupthatgateinthewall.Alsoonthisdaytheships
wentbacktohebytheboom,havingpreviouslyleftthisplaceforfearofthecannonfire,andgonenearthewallsof
Pera,andtheyguardedtheboomastheyhaddonepreviously.
OntheeighthofMay,weheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakentolandallthegoodsin
ConstantinoplethatwereonthegalleysfromTanaandtosinkthesethreegalleysintheEmperor'sarsenal,andwhen
thisvotewastakentounloadthesegalleysandtheunloadingwasabouttobegin,suddenlythecrewsleapedwith
theirswordstotheportsofthegalleys,saying,"Letusseethemanwhowilltakethecargoesfromthesegalleys!We
know,thatwhereourpropertyis,thereourhomesarealso,andwealsoknowthatassoonaswehaveunloaded
thesegalleysandsunktheminthearsenal,atoncetheGreekswillkeepusintheircitybyforceastheirslaves,
whereasnowweareatlibertyeithertogoortostay.Soitwouldbebettertogiveupunloadingthegalleysand
placeourselvesunderthemercyofourLordGod,forHimtosettlethismatter,andforeverythingtohappenasHe
wills,andforHimtodowithusasHepleasesbecauseweknow,andseeclearly,thatnoChristianwhofinds
himselfatpresentinthismiserablecity,willbeabletoescapethefuryofthiscursedpagan,andweshallallmeetin
theendatthepointofaTurkishsword.Soweofthegalleyshavedecidedtodiehereonthegalleys,whichareour
home,andwewillnotdieonland."Thisprotestofthecrewswassoeffectivethattheystayedonthegalleys,andso
thecaptainofthegalleysfeltveryconfidentandstayedinhisgalleysbythepalisadeofPerawithallthecrews.But
allthroughthisday,theTurksneverstoppedbombardingthewallsofthecitybySanRomanowiththeirbigcannon
andwithalltheotherones.
OntheninthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,andavotewastakeninthisCouncilthatCabriel
Trivixan,captainofthetwogalleys,shouldgoonlandbythecitywallswithfortymenfromhisowngalley,and
disarmhistwolonggalleysandleavetheminchargeofAluvixeDiedo,captainofthegalleysofTana,andCabriel
TrivixanobeyedtheordersgivenhimbytheCouncilanddisarmedhisgalleys,andwentonlandtothewallswith
fourhundredmenfromthegalleys,andthesestayed,asIhavesaidpreviously,inthechargeofAluvixeDiedo.
OnthetenthofMayweheldaCounciloftheTwelve,usingtheChurchofSantaMariaofConstantinople
forthepurpose:
"Consideringthatinthepresentdangeritisapraiseworthythingtomakeprovisionforactionbysea,and
sinceeveryoneseesclearlythatthefleetofthesefaithlessTurksisverystrongandpowerfulinoppositionto
ourown,andsinceinthisharbourofConstantinopleandPerathereareships,galleysandothervesselsof
variousnationsandfromvariousplacesinorderthatmattersmayproceedinanorderlyfashioninthebattles
whichwillhavetobefoughtatsea,andinorderthatweChristiansmayhavevictoryandhonourinthis
worldagainsttheTurks,avotewillbetakenbyauthorityofthisCouncil,thatthenobleAluvixeDiedo,
captainofthegalleysofTana,shouldbemadecaptaingeneralatseaofthefleetwhichisatpresentinthe
harbour,andthatthesaidcaptainshallhavecompletepowertogiveordersconcerningallthevesselsinthe
harbour."
Thevotewastaken,andonthisdayAluvixeDiedowillinglyacceptedthecaptaincyandatoncebeganto
puttheshipsandgalleysingoodorderintheharbour,andparticularlytheboomacrosstheharbour,becausethe
safetyofourfleetandourharbourdependeduponit.Whentheharbourhadbeenorganisedinthisway,wewere
rathermoreconfidentwithouthavingtothinkofthesea.
OntheeleventhofMaynothinghappenedonlandoratseaexceptagreatdealofcannonfireagainstthe
wallsfromthelandwardside,andnothingelseworthmentioninghappened.
OnthetwelfthofMayatmidnighttherecametothewallsofthepalacefiftythousandTurkswellordered,
andtheseTurkishdogssurroundedthewholepalacewithfiercecriesaccordingtotheircustom,andwithsoundsof
castanetsandtambourinesandonthisnighttheymadeastrongattackagainstthewallsofthepalace,sothatthe
majorityofthoseinthecitythoughtthatnightthatthecitywaslost.ButourmercifulLordJesusChristdidnotwish
thatthecityshouldbelostsocheaplythatnight,andalsoGodwishedtheprophecytobefulfilled.Thisprophecy
wasmadebySaintConstantine,thefirstEmperortoholdConstantinople,andheprophesiedthatConstantinople
shouldneverbelost,untilthemoonrosedarkenedwhenitwasatthefull,thatis,lackingthehalfofitsothepresent
timewasnotthatatwhichthecitywastobelost,althoughitistruethatitsdestructionandthelossoftheempire
whichbelongedtoitwasdrawingnear.
OnthethirteenthofMayCabrielTrivixan,captainofthelightgalleys,lefthisgalleysinthechargeofthe
captainoftheharbour,andwenttostandatthecitywallswithhismen,toguardthewallswheretheyhadbeen
repairedafterhavingbeendamagedbycannonfireandhestayedatthewallsuntiltheTurkscapturedthecity.Also
onthisdaytherecameanumberofTurkstothewallsskirmishing,butnothingsignificanthappenedduringthewhole
dayandnight,exceptforcannonfirecontinuallybombardingtheunfortunatewalls.
Onthefourteenth(theeventsdescribedabovetookplaceonthethirteenth)ofMayatthethirdhour,the
TurkishSultanhadthecannonmoved,whichhadbeenplacedonthehillofPera,anduptothattimehadbeen
bombardingourfleetthestoneswhichthesecannonfiredatourfleetwerecounted,andweretwohundredand
twelveinnumber,allofaweightofatleasttwohundredpoundseach.Andaftertakingthesecannonfromthehillof
Pera,heplacedthematapointwheretheycouldfireatagatecalledtheChinigo,aplacenearthepalaceofthe
MostSereneEmperor.TheTurksfiredtheircannonagreatdeal,butwerenotabletodoanyharm,andsothey
tookthesecannonawayfromthatpoint,andputthembythecitywallsclosetotheotherstobombardthecityby
SanRomano,wheretheweakestpartofthecitywasanddayandnightthesecannondidnotceasefromfiringatthe
unfortunatewalls,breakingdownlargeportionsofthem,whileweinthecitywereengageddayandnightinmaking
goodrepairswherethewallswerebroken,withbarrelsandbrushwoodandearthandwhateverelsewasneededfor
this,sothattheywereasstrongastheyhadbeenoriginally,andwehadnofearthattheTurkswouldbreakthem
down.Atthisgate,whichwasmoredamagedthantheothers,wehadplacedforthegreatersecurityoftheplace
threehundredfullyarmedmeningoodorder,allforeignerswithnotaGreekamongthem,becausetheGreekswere
cowards,andthesethreehundredmenhadwiththemsomegoodcannonandgoodgunsandalargenumberof
crossbowsandotherequipment.
OnthefifteenthofMaytherewasnoothermovementbyseaorlandexceptforthecannon,whichnever
stoppedfiringatthewalls.Andassoonasthewallswerebrokendown,wesetaboutrepairingthemwiththeir
internalditches,asIhavesaid.OnthisdaytheTurksstayedveryquietlyintheircampwithoutanyoftheirusual
skirmishingaroundthewalls.
OnthesixteenthofMayataboutthetwentysecondhour,severalTurkishbregantiniseparatedthemselves
fromtheirfleetwhichwasattheColumns.Thesebregantinicameatfullspeedtowardstheharbourboom,andwe
Christianswhowereattheboomawaitedthemwithgreatpleasure,thinkingthattheywereChristianswhohad
escapedfromtheTurkishfleetandwantedtocometousforgreatersafetybutwhentheycameneartheboom,they
letlooseseveralshotsattheshipswhichwerethere,andthoseofuswhowereonboard,whenwesawthishappen
sodeliberately,decidedtocounterattackwithourbregantiniandwhentheTurkssawthatwewerecounter
attacking,theybegantomaketheirescape,withourmenpursuingthemandnearlycatchingupwiththem.They
werealmostupontheTurks,whentheyhurriedlytooktotheiroarsandescapedtotheirfleet,andourvessels
returnedinsidetheharbourboom,andnothingelsehappenedbyseaonthisday.
Onthisday,thesixteenthofMay,theretookplaceonlandthefollowingevents.TheTurkshaddugamine,
togetintothecityunderthewalls,andtheminewasdiscoveredonthisday.TheTurkshadbeguntodigithalfa
milefromthecitywalls,anditpassedunderthefoundationsbutourmeninthecityheardthemworkingatnight,
withthediggingofthismine,whichhadalreadypassedunderthefoundationsofthewalls.Assoonasthisnoisewas
heard,theMegadukeatonceinformedtheMostSereneEmperorofit,andhewastoldofthestagewhichthemine
hadreached.TheEmperorwonderedgreatlyatthis,andquicklyarrangedforactiontobetakenaboutthemine.At
onceasearchwasmadethroughoutthecityforallthemenexperiencedinmining,andwhentheywerefound,they
weresentforbytheMegaduke,whohadthemdigamineinsidethecity,tofindtheTurkishone,andonetunnelmet
theotherinsuchawaythatoursfoundtheirs,andourmenwerepreparedforthis,andquicklythrewfireintotheirs
andburnedallthepropssupportingit,sothattheearthcollapsedontopoftheTurksandsuffocatedthosewho
wereinthemineortheywereburnedinthefire.ThisminewasataplacecalledCalegaria,andtheTurksputitthere
becausetherewerenobarbicans.Itcausedgreat

fearinthecity,becauseitwasthoughtthattheTurksmightmake
anattackanynightbywayoftheirmines,althoughonthisoccasiontheywerediscomfited.Nothingelsehappened
onthisday,exceptforagreatdealofcannonfireintheusualway,andsuchshoutingthattheveryairseemedtobe
splittingapart.
OntheseventeenthofMay,anhourbeforesunset,fivefuste approachedtheharbourboom,toseeinwhat
conditionourfleetwas,andhowtheywereordered,andtoseeifwewereafraidofthemandwhenourmensaw
thesefivefuste approachingtheboom,atoncethoseontheshipsbegantofiretheircannonatthem.Altogether
thoseinConstantinopleandthoseontheshipsandonthegalleysfiredmorethanseventyshots,butunfortunately
noneofthemscoredadirecthit,andtheTurkishfuste, seeingthiscannonfire,decidedtoretreattotheirownfleet,
whichwasanchoredattheColumns,andtheretheyreportedtotheircaptainwhattheyhadseenofourfleet,and
fromthattimeonwardstheTurkswereingreatfearofusatsea.Onthisdaynothingelsehappenedbysea,although
therewasmuchcannonfireonlandandalittleskirmishing,butnothingworthyofnote,exceptthateveryoneonland
wasinastateofgreatfear,expectingageneralattackfromdaytomay,as aresultofwhicheveryoneexpectedto
beenslavedbytheTurks,asinfactdidhappen.
OntheeighteenthofMayatnighttheTurksbuiltaveryfinetowerinthefollowingway.Allthroughthenight
agreatnumberofthemwereworkingaway,andintheonenighttheymadeatowerbuiltonthelipoftheditchand
reachinghigherthanthewallsofthebarbicans,nearaplacecalledCresca.Thistowerwasmadeinsuchawaythat
noonewouldhavebelievedthatitcouldbedone,andnoworkofthiskindhadeverbeendonebypagansbefore,
norsowellconstructed.Infact,Itellyou,thatifalltheChristiansinConstantinoplehadwishedtobuildanythingon
suchascale,theycouldnothavedoneitinamonth,butthesediditinasinglenight.Thisnotabletowerwasten
pacesdistantfromthemainwallsofthecity,andonthewallstheregatheredagreatnumberofarmedmen,all
amazedatthistower,andalthoughIsaidthatitwasbuiltinasinglenight,infactitwasbuiltinlessthanfourhours.
Theybuiltitsoquicklythatthoseonthewallswhowereguardingtheplacedidnotrealisethatitwasbeingbuilt,
exceptthatinthemorningtheysawitfinished,andwereveryfrightenedwhentheysawwhathadbeendone.When
theyhadinspectedthisremarkablepieceofwork,theywentinstantlytotelltheMostSereneEmperorthatithad
beenbuilt.AtoncetheEmperorcamewithhisnoblestoseethiswonderfulthing,andwhentheysawittheywere
likemenstruckdeadforfear,andasaresulttheywerecontinuallyafraidthatthistowermightcausethecitytobe
lost,becauseitovertoppedthebarbicans.
Thetowerwasbuiltinthefollowingway.Firstofalltherewasaframeworkofstrongbeams,protectedall
aroundwithcamelskinswhichcoveredit,andinsideitwashalffullofearth,andwitheartharounditoutsidehalf
wayup,sothatcannonorgunfirecouldnotharmit,orcrossbowbolts,andtheyhadputhurdlesoutsideandover
everythingelse,withcamelskinscoveringthemandtheyhadalsomadearoadtotheircamp,agoodhalfmilein
length,beginningfromthetower,andonbothsidesofit,andoverthetoptherewasadoublelayerofhurdlesand
overthemcamelskins,sothattheycouldgofromthetowertothecampundercoverwithoutbeinginanydanger
fromgunsorcrossbowboltsorfirefromthesmallercannonandtheTurksinsidethetowerwereexcavatingearth
andcastingitintotheditch,andkeptonheapingupearthinthisway.Theyheapedupsomuchearththatthey
overtoppedthewallsofthebarbicans,andthistowerwasofgreatassistancetothemingainingthecity.Whenthe
Turksinthecamphadmadethisremarkabletower,andfilledalltheditchwithearthwhereitwasnecessary,they
thoughtthattheyhadmadeagreatadvance,andonthisdaynothingelsehappenedatseaoronland,bydayorby
night.But,itistrue,onthisdaytheTurksshotagreatnumberofarrowsintothecityfromtheplacewherethetower
was,firingthem,itseemed,fromsheerhighspirits,whileourmenwereallverysadandfearful.

OnthenineteenthofMaythesecursedTurks,fullofeverywickedness,setaboutmakingandfinishinga
bridgeacrosstheharbourfromtheneighbourhoodofPeratoConstantinople,bythepalisade,madeoflargebarrels
tiedtogether,withlongbeamslaidacrossandfastenedtightlytomakeafinestrongbridge.Theykeptitreadyinthis
formtostretchacrosstheharbourwhenageneralattackwasmade,tomaketheirattackmoreeffective,andalsoto
make,ourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthecity,togivethemselvesagreatchanceofsuccessonthelandwardside
wherethewallshadbeendamagedbycannonfire.Ifthebridgehadbeenstretchedacrosstheharbourbeforethe
generalattack,asinglecannonshotwouldhavebrokenitandmadeituseless,butasIhavesaid,theprincipal
purposeofitwastomakeourmenspreadthemselvesaroundthewalls.ItwouldhavestretchedtotheChinigogate,
butitneverwasstretchedacross,becausetheTurksneverneededtodoso.Thiswasallthathappenedonthisday
byseaandonland,exceptthatonlandthecannonfirecontinuedbydayandbynight,withsectionsofwallbeing
continuallyknockedtotheground,whileourmenallthewhilemadegoodrepairswithbarrelsandearthtomake
themasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.AlsotheTurksfiredinnumerablearrowsandshots,anddayafterdaywe
sufferedthefireoftheseandtheirbombardmentandtheirusualshouting.
OnthetwentiethofMaytherewerehardlyanyattacksorskirmishingsbyseaoronland,exceptforthe
usualcannonfirewhichcontinuallybroughtstretchesofthewallsdowntotheground,whileweChristiansquickly
repairedthedamagewithbarrelsandwithesandearthtomakethemasstrongastheyhadbeenbefore.Menand
women,theoldandtheyoungandthepriests,allworkedtogetherattheserepairsbecauseoftheurgencyofthe
matter,sincetheyhadtobestrong:thecannonwouldhavestrippedthewholeofthecityofitsdefences,exceptthat
whentheshotsstruck,theylandedintherepairedsectionswhichwereofearth.Thecannonwereverylarge,butone
wasofexceptionalsize,throwingaballtwelvehundredpoundsinweight,andwhenitfiredtheexplosionmadeall
thewallsofthecityshake,andallthegroundinside,andeventheshipsintheharbourfeltthevibrationsofit.
Becauseofthegreatnoise,manywomenfaintedwiththeshockwhichthefiringofitgavethem.Nogreatercannon
thanthisonewaseverseeninthewholepaganworld,anditwasthisthatbrokedownsuchagreatdealofthecity
walls.Nothingfurtherhappenedonthisday.
OnthetwentyfirstofMay,twohoursbeforedaybreak,thewholeoftheTurkishfleetwhichwasanchored
attheColumnsgotunderway,andcamerowingvigorouslyasfarastheharbourboom,soundingtheircastanetsand
tambourineswithgreatenergytofrightenus.Andwhentheywereneartheboomtheycametoastopclosetothe
harbour,andwesailorswaitedbravelyforthemtomakeanattackonourfleet.Wewereallwellarmedandwell
equipped,particularlythetenshipswhichwereattheboom,whichwereverywellequippedandwellorderedin
preparationforaTurkishattack.Itseemedasiftheywouldattack,inspiteofthelargenumberofarmedmenon
boardourshipsbutjustastheirvesselswerecomingneartheboom,thewholecitybegantosoundanalarm,
thinkingthatthisdaytheyintendedtomakeageneralattack.Thetocsinwassoundedandthewholecityrushedto
arms,andeveryonewenttostandathispostwherehehadbeenplacedbytheMostSereneEmperor.Whenthe
Turkishfleetsawthatourswassowellordered,andheardthealarmsignalsoundedthroughoutthewholecity,they
hadsecondthoughtsandsuddenlyturnedaroundandreturnedtotheColumnswheretheyhadbeenanchored
previously.Sotwohoursaftersunrisetherewascompletecalmonbothsides,asifnoattackbyseahadtaken
place.AtnoononthisdayinthecitywefoundaminebytheCalegariawhichtheTurkshaddugunderthe
foundationsofthewallsandintothecity,withtheintentionofbreakinginandsurprisingusonenightbutitwasnot
verydangerous.Whenourmendiscoveredthistunnel,theywentandthrewfireintoit,andtheTurksoutsiderealised
thatwewereintendingtosetfiretoit,andlitafireontheirside,sothatitwasbeingburnedoutfrombothdirections.
Theresultwasthatwewonthetunnelwithhonourforourselves,andtherewasnofurtherdangerthere.Alsoonthis
daytheTurksbombardedthepoorwallsterriblyandknockeddowngreatstretchesofthem,andonesectionof
tower,andwemadegoodrepairsquicklywithbarrelsandotherthings,sothatwehadagreatdealtodobyseaand
onland,andintheeveningwewerecompletelyexhaustedwithallourtroubles.
OnthetwentysecondofMay,atthehourofCompline,wefoundatunnelattheCalegariawhichtheTurks
haddugunderthefoundationsofthewallsandintothecity,neartheonewhichhadbeendiscoveredontheprevious
dayandduginthesameway,andourmenthrewfireintoitandburneditbravelywithmuchhonourforus.Several
Turkswereburnedinsideit,whowerecaughtinsideandcouldnotgetoutquicklyenough.Alsoonthissameday
therewasdiscoveredanothertunnelinthesameplace,attheCalegaria,wheretherearenobarbicans.Thistunnel
wasdifficulttofind,butbythegraceofGoditwasgrantedthatitshouldcollapseofitsownaccord,killingallthe
Turksinside.Tomakeclearthewayinwhichtheyworked,thesetunnelsweredugintotheearth,andthemenmade
theirwaywiththeearthbeingsupportedabovewithstoutpropsofgoodwooduntiltheyreachedthefoundationsof
thecity,andthentheyweredugunderthefoundationsandcameupagaininsidethecity,andthiswasthewayin
whichtheydugtheirtunnels.
Onthissameday,thetwentysecondofMay,atthefirsthourofthenight,thereappearedawonderfulsign
inthesky,whichwastotellConstantinetheworthyEmperorofConstantinoplethathisproudempirewasaboutto
cometoanend,asitdid.Thesignwasofthisformandcondition:atthefirsthouraftersunsetthemoonrose,being
atthistimeatthefull,sothatitshouldhaverisenintheformofacompletecirclebutitroseasifitwerenomore
thanathreedaymoon,withonlyalittleofitshowing,althoughtheairwasclearandunclouded,pureascrystal.The
moonstayedinthisformforaboutfourhours,andgraduallyincreasedtoafullcircle,sothatatthesixthhourofthe
nightitwasfullyformed.WhenweChristiansandthepaganshadseenthismarveloussign,theEmperorof
Constantinoplewasgreatlyafraidofit,andsowereallhisnobles,becausetheGreekshadaprophecywhichsaid
thatConstantinoplewouldneverfalluntilthefullmoonshouldgiveasign,andthiswasthereasonforthefearwhich
theGreeksfelt.ButtheTurksmadegreatfestivityintheircampforjoyatthesign,becausetheybelievedthatnow
victorywasintheirhands,asintruthitwas.
OnthetwentythirddayofMayatdaybreakatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheplacewhere
theothershadbeenfound,andforyourinformation,thisCalegariaisneartheEmperor'spalace.Whenwefoundthis
tunnel,wethrewfireintoitstraightaway,anditallcaughtfirequickly,andasitburneditcollapsedatonce,
suffocatinganumberofTurkswhowereinit.Twoofthemwerebroughtoutfromthetunnelalive,whowerethe
meninchargeofit.ThesetwomenweretorturedbytheGreeksandmadeknownthewhereaboutsoftheother
tunnels,andaftertheyhadgiventhisinformation,theirheadswerecutoff,andtheirbodiesthrownoverthewallson
thesideofthecitywheretheTurkishcampwasandwhentheysawtheseTurksthrowndownfromthewalls,they
wereveryangry,andfeltgreathatredfortheGreeksandforusItalians.Alsoonthissameday,anhourbefore
daybreak,abregantinowhichwastoallappearancesTurkish,camesailinguptheDardanelles,anditwastheone
whichhadbeensenttothearchipelagotomeetourfleetandtellittocomewithallspeed,sinceConstantinoplewas
stillbeingstronglydefended.TheTurkishfleet,whichwasanchoredattheColumns,sawthisbrigcomerowing
strongly,andthoughtthatitwasthevanguardofourfleet,becausetheyknewperfectlywellthatitwasnotaTurkish
vessel,andsotheylefttheColumnsandrowedtowardsit.Butwhentheysawthebrigreachtheboom,whichwas
openedforit,anditenteredtheharboursafely,theyallturnedbackagainandanchoredintheirusualposition.
Meanwhile,themeninourfleetwereallattheirposts,armedintheusualway,incasetheTurkishfleetattackedthe
boom,andwestayedinthiswayuntilanhourandahalfafterdaybreak,whenwefinallyputdownourweapons.
Littleelsehappenedonthisday,exceptthatinthecitytherewasageneralalarm,tocallpeopletogetheratthe
harbourforfearoftheTurkishfleet,asIhavesaid.Therewasalsoagreatbombardmentofthecitywalls,andsome
sectionsofwallwereknockeddown,andwequicklyrepairedthem,sothisdaywasoneofgreatlabourand
troubles,bothbyseaandonthesideofthecitywhichfacedtheenemy.
OnthetwentyfourthofMayatmiddayatunnelwasdiscoveredattheCalegaria,neartheothers,andthese
wickedTurkshadputhalfatoweronpropsandabouttenpacesofwall,tothrowfireinside,andgetintothecity.
ButourLordGoddidnotwishustosuffersuchanevilatthistime,anddidnotwishthecitytobetakeninthisway.
WhentheGreekshadfoundthislatesttunnel,theybegantodigatonce,andwalleditupstraightaway,andmake
everythingasstrongasbefore,sothattherewasnothingmoretobefearedthere.ThisdaytheTurksmadefrenzied
attacksonthecitywallswithcannonfireandgunfireandcountlessarrows,sothatwehadaverybaddayindeed.
Byseawehadnotrouble,butneverthelesswestoodtoourarmsforfearoftheirfleet,incaseitshouldmakean
attackonuswithoutwarning.
OnthisdaytherewasgreatfestivityintheTurkishcamp,withmusicandotherkindsofmerriment,because
theyknewthattheyweresoongoingtomakeageneralattack.
OnthetwentyfifthofMayatthehourofVespers,anothertunnelwasdiscoveredinthesameareaofthe
Calegarianearthefirsttunnels.Itwasastrongoneandmighthavebeenverydangerousindeed,becausetheyhad
putpropsunderneathapieceofthewall,andwhentheysetfiretotheirtunnelitwouldhavecollapsed,andafterthis
theTurkswouldquitecertainlyhavebeenabletogetintothecityandtakeitwithoutdifficulty.Thiswasthelast
tunnelwhichtheydug,andthelasttobediscovered,anditwasthemostdangerousofanyofthetunnelswhichwere
found.OnthissamedaytheTurksbombardedthewallsofthecityheavilyandknockeddownagreatdealofthem,
andwequicklymadethemgoodwithrepairsofbarrelsandearthalsotheyfiredinnumerablearrows.Bysea,the
Turkishfleetmadenomovement,andneitherdidours,exceptthatontheshipsandonthegalleyswestoodtoour
armsdayandnight.
OnthetwentysixthofMay,anhouraftersunset,theTurkssetfiresblazingbrightlythroughthe

wholeof
theircamp.Everytentintheircamp littwo firesofgreatsize,andthelightfromthemwassostrongthatitseemed
asifitwereday.Thesefiresburneduntilmidnight,andtheSultanhadthemlitinthecamptoencouragehismen,
becausethetimewascomingforthedestructionofthecity,andformakingageneralattack.Asthepagansmade
theirfires,theyshoutedintheirTurkishfashion,sothatitseemedasiftheveryskieswouldsplitapart.Thewhole
citywasinastateofpanic,andeveryonewasintearsandprayingtoGodandtotheVirginMarythatweshould
escapethefuryofthepagans.IcannotdescribethedamagedoneonthisdaybythecannontothewallsatSan
Romano,particularlybythebigcannon,sothatatthistimeoursufferingweregreat,andwewereveryfearful.By
seanothinghappenedworthyofnote,exceptthatwesawthefleetassembling.
OnthetwentyseventhofMaythesewickedpaganskeptfiresgoingallnight,asmanyastheyhadmadeon
thepreviousnight.Thefireslasteduntilthemiddleofthenight,withmostterribleshoutingwhichwasheardasfaras
thecoastofAnatoliatwelvemilesaway,andweChristianswereveryfearful.Thisfrighteningthinglasteduntilfull
day,butallthenextdaytheydidnothingexceptbombardthepoorwallsandbringstretchesofthemdowntothe
ground,andhalfofthemwerebadlydamaged.Byseanothinghappened,andthiswasallthattookplaceonthisday
andnight.
OnthetwentyeighthofMaytheTurkishSultanhadinstructionsgiventothesoundofthetrumpetthroughout
hiscamp,thatunderpainofdeath,allhispashasandtheirlieutenants,andalltherestofhiscaptainsandmenofany
otherconditionwhohadtheTurksastheirrulers,shouldbereadyattheirpostsallday,becausetomorrowhe
intendedtomakeageneralattackonthewretchedcity.Whentheseordershadbeenpassedthroughthecamp,they
allwentquicklytotheirpostswithasmuchspeedaspossible,butalltherestofthedayfromdawnuntilnightfallthe
Turksdidnothingexceptbringverylongladderstothewalls,inordertomakeuseofthemonthenextday,which
wastobetheclimaxoftheattack.Therewereabouttwothousandoftheseladders,andafterthesetheybroughtup
agreatnumberofhurdlestoprotectthemenwhoweretoraisetheladdersuptothewalls.Whenthishadbeen
done,theTurkswentsoundingtrumpetsthroughtheircamp,andcastanetsandtambourines,toencouragethe
peoplethere,saying:"ChildrenofMahomet,beofgoodcheer.TomorrowweshallhavesomanyChristiansinour
hands,thatweshallsellthemintoslaveryattwoforaducat,andweshallhavesuchrichesthatweshallbeallof
gold,andfromthebeardsoftheGreeksweshallmakeleashestotieupourdogs,andtheirwivesandtheirsons
shallbeslavessobeofgoodcheer,childrenofMahomet,andbereadytodiewithastoutheartforloveofour
Mahomet"Andinthiswaythepaganswentabouttheircampgivingencouragement.Afterthis,theyhadanorder
criedthroughouttheircamp,thateveryTurkunderpainofdeathshouldstand,andmove,anddoeverythingas
orderedbyhisofficers.AseveningcameonalltheTurkswentingoodordertotheirpostswiththeirweapons,and
greatmountainsofarrowsandbythetimetheeveninghadcome,theyhadallreachedtheirpositions,allofagood
heartandeagertojoinbattle,andallprayingtotheirMahomettohelpthemtovictory.Thisdaytheybombardedthe
poorwallssoheavilythatitwasathingnotofthisworld,andthistheydidbecauseitwasthedayforendingthe

bombardment.OnthisdayweChristiansmadesevencartloadsofmanteletstoputonthebattlementsonthe
landwardside.Whenthesemanteletshadbeenmade,theywerebroughttothepiazza,andtheBailoorderedthe
Greekstocarrythematoncetothewalls.ButtheGreeksrefusedtodosounlesstheywerepaid,andtherewasan
argumentthatevening,becauseweVenetianswerewillingtopaycashtothosewhocarriedthem,andtheGreeks
didnotwanttopay.Whenatlastthemanteletsweretakentothewalls,itwasdark,andtheycouldnotbeputon
thebattlementsfortheattack,andwedidnothavetheuseofthem,becauseofthegreedoftheGreeks.Atmidday
theBailoorderedthateveryonewhocalledhimselfaVenetianshouldgotothewallsonthelandwardside,forthe
loveofGodandforthesakeofthecityandforthehonouroftheChristianfaith,andthateveryoneshouldbeof
goodheartandreadytodieathispost.AndeveryonewithagoodheartobeyedtheordersoftheBailo,andweput
ourselvesinorderasbestwecould,andinthesamewayweputthefleetinorder,particularlytheharbourboom
andalltheshipsandgalleys.
TheTurkishSultanalsorodewithtenthousandhorsementohisfleetattheColumns,toseewhatcondition
theywerein,andtoputtheminorderforthegeneralattackonthenextday,andhemadearrangementswithhis
admiralforthewayinwhichtheyshouldattack.Whenthishadbeendone,theSultanproceededtomakemerrywith
hisadmiralandallhisofficers,andtheyallgotdrunktogetheraccordingtotheircustom.ThentheSultanreturnedto
hiscamp,andcontinuedtomakemerryathispost.Allthisdaythetocsinwassoundedinthecity,tomakeeveryone
takeuptheirposts,andwomen,andchildrentoo,carriedstonestothewalls,toputthemonthebattlementssothat
theycouldbehurleddownupontheTurksandeveryonewentweepingthroughthecityfromthegreatfearofthem
whichtheyhad.Onehourafterdark,theTurksintheircampbegantolightaterrifyingnumberoffires,muchgreater
thantheyhadlitonthetwopreviousnights,butworsethanthis,itwastheirshoutingwhichwasmorethanwe
Christianscouldbearandtogetherwiththeirshouting,theyfiredagreatnumberofcannonandguns,andhurled
stoneswithoutnumber,sothattousitseemedtobeaveryinferno.Theircelebrationsandfestivitieslasteduntil
midnight,andthenthefiresdiedout,andallthisdayandnightthepaganswereprayingtotheirMahometthathe
shouldgivethemvictoryandthecaptureofthiscityofConstantinople,andweChristiansallthroughthedayand
nightprayedtoGodandtoHisMother,theMadonnaSaintMary,andtoalltheSaintsintheheavens,praying
tearfullytothemthattheyshouldgiveusthevictory,andthatweshouldescapethefuryofthesewickedpagans.
Andwheneachsidehadprayedforvictory,theytotheirgodandwetoours,ourGodinHeavendeterminedwith
HisMotherwhichofusshouldbesuccessfulinthisbattlewhichwastobesofierce,andwastobeconcludedonthe
followingday.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,thelastdayofthesiege,ourLordGoddecided,tothesorrowoftheGreeks,
thatHewaswillingforthecitytofallonthisdayintothehandsofMahometBeytheTurksonofMurat,afterthe
fashionandinthemannerdescribedbelowandalsooureternalGodwaswillingtomakethisdecisioninorderto
fulfillalltheancientprophecies,particularlythefirstprophecymadebySaintConstantine,whoisonhorsebackona
columnbytheChurchofSaintSophiaofthiscity,prophesyingwithhishandandsaying,"Fromthisdirectionwill
cometheonewhowillundome,"pointingtoAnatolia,thatisTurkey.Anotherprophecywhichhemadewasthat
whenthereshouldbeanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,underhisruleConstantinoplewouldbelost,and
therewasanotherprophecythatwhenthemoonshouldgiveasigninthesky,withinafewdaystheTurkswould
haveConstantinople.Allthesethreeprophecieshadcometopass,seeingthattheTurkshadpassedintoGreece,
therewasanEmperorcalledConstantinesonofHelen,andthemoonhadgivenasigninthesky,sothatGodhad
determinedtocometothisdecisionagainsttheChristiansandparticularlyagainsttheEmpireofConstantinople,as
youshallhear.
OnthetwentyninthofMay,1453,threehoursbeforedaybreak,MahometBeysonofMurattheTurk
camehimselftothewallsofConstantinopletobeginthegeneralassaultwhichgainedhimthecity.TheSultandivided
histroopsintothreegroupsoffiftythousandmeneach:onegroupwasofChristianswhowerekeptinhiscamp
againsthiswill,thesecondgroupwasofmenofalowcondition,peasantsandthelike,andthethirdgroupwasof
janissariesintheirwhiteturbans,thesebeingallsoldiersoftheSultanandpaideveryday,allwellarmedmenstrong
inbattle,andbehindthesejanissarieswerealltheofficers,andbehindthesetheTurkishSultan.Thefirstgroup,
whichwastheChristians,hadthetaskofcarryingtheladderstothewalls,andtheytriedtoraisetheladdersup,and
atoncewethrewthemtothegroundwiththemenwhowereraisingthem,andtheywereallkilledatonce,andwe
threwbigstonesdownonthemfromthebattlements,sothatfewescapedaliveinfact,anyonewhoapproached
beneaththewallswaskilled.Whenthosewhowereraisinguptheladderssawsomanydead,theytriedtoretreat
towardstheircamp,soasnottobekilledbythestones,andwhentherestoftheTurkswhowerebehindsawthat
theywererunningaway,atoncetheycutthemtopieceswiththeirscimitarsandmadethemturnbacktowardsthe
walls,sothattheyhadthechoiceofdyingononesideortheotherandwhenthisfirstgroupwaskilledandcutto
pieces,thesecondgroupbegantoattackvigorously.Thefirstgroupwassentforwardfortworeasons,firstly
becausetheypreferredthatChristiansshoulddieratherthanTurks,andsecondlytowearusoutinthecityandasI
havesaid,whenthefirstgroupwasdeadorwounded,thesecondgroupcameonlikelionsunchainedagainstthe
wallsonthesideofSanRomanoandwhenwesawthisfearfulthing,atoncethetocsinwassoundedthroughthe
wholecityandateverypostonthewalls,andeverymanrancryingouttohelpandtheEternalGodshowedusHis
mercyagainsttheseTurkishdogs,sothateverymanran

towardofftheattackofthepagans,andtheybegantofall
backoutsidethebarbicans.Butthissecondgroupwasmadeupofbravemen,whocametothewallsandwearied
thoseinthecitygreatlybytheirattack.Theyalsomadeagreatattempttoraiseladdersuptothewalls,butthemen
onthewallsbravelythrewthemdowntothegroundagain,andmanyTurkswerekilled.Also,ourcrossbowsand
cannonkeptonfiringintotheircampatthistimeandkilledanincrediblenumberofTurks.
Whenthesecondgrouphadcomeforwardandattemptedunsuccessfullytogetintothecity,therethen
approachedthethirdgroup,theirpaidsoldiersthejanissaries,andtheirofficersandtheirotherprincipal
commanders,allverybravemen,andtheTurkishSultanbehindthemall.Thisthirdgroupattackedthewallsofthe
poorcity,notlikeTurksbutlikelions,withsuchshoutingandsoundingofcastanetsthatitseemed athingnotofthis
world,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia,twelvemilesawayfromtheircamp.Thisthirdgroupof
Turks,allfinefighters,foundthoseonthewallsverywearyafterhavingfoughtwiththefirstandsecondgroups,
whilethepaganswereeagerandfreshforthebattleandwiththeloudcrieswhichtheyutteredonthefield,they
spreadfearthroughthecityandtookawayourcouragewiththeirshoutingandnoise.Thewretchedpeopleinthe
cityfeltthemselvestohavebeentakenalready,anddecidedtosoundthetocsinthroughthewholecity,andsounded
itatallthepostsonthewalls,allcryingatthetopoftheirvoices,"Mercy!Mercy!GodsendhelpfromHeavento
thisEmpireofConstantine,sothatapaganpeoplemaynotruleovertheEmpire!"Allthroughthecityallthewomen
wereontheirknees,andallthementoo,prayingmostearnestlyanddevotedlytoouromnipotentGodandHis
MotherMadonnaSaintMary,withallthesaintedmenandwomenofthecelestialhierarchy,tograntusvictoryover
thispaganrace,thesewickedTurks,enemiesoftheChristianfaith.Whilethesesupplicationswerebeingmade,the
TurkswereattackingfiercelyonthelandwardsidebySanRomano,bytheheadquartersoftheMostSerene
Emperorandallhisnobles,andhisprincipalknightsandhisbravestmen,whoallstayedbyhimfightingbravely.The
Turkswereattacking,asIhavesaid,likemendeterminedtoenterthecity,bySanRomanoonthelandwardside,
firingtheircannonagainandagain,withsomanyothergunsandarrowswithoutnumberandshoutingfromthese
pagans,thattheveryairseemedtobesplitapartandtheykeptonfiringtheirgreatcannonwhichfiredaball
weighingtwelvehundredpounds,andtheirarrows,allalongthelengthofthewallsonthesidewheretheircamp
was,adistanceofsixmiles,sothatinsidethebarbicansatleasteightycamelloadsofthemwerepickedup,andas
manyastwentycamelloadsofthosewhichwereintheditch.Thisfiercebattlelasteduntildaybreak.
OurmenofVenicedidmarvelsofdefenceinthepartwherethebastionwas,wheretheTurkswere
concentratingtheirattack,butitwasuseless,sinceoureternalGodhadalreadymadeupHismindthatthecity
shouldfallintothehandsoftheTurksandsinceGodhadsodetermined,nothingfurthercouldbedone,exceptthat
allweChristianswhofoundourselvesatthistimeinthewretchedcityshouldplaceourselvesinthehandsofour
mercifulLordJesusChristandofHisMother,MadonnaSaintMary,forthemtohavemercyonthesoulsofthose
whohadtodieinthebattleonthisday.OnehourbeforedaybreaktheSultanhadhisgreatcannonfired,andthe
shotlandedintherepairswhichwehadmadeandknockedthemdowntotheground.Nothingcouldbeseenforthe
smokemadebythecannon,andtheTurkscameonundercoverofthesmoke,and aboutthreehundredofthemgot
insidethe,barbicans. TheGreeksandVenetiansfoughthardanddrovethemoutofthebarbicans,andagreat
numberdied,includingalmostallofthosewhowereabletogetinside.AftertheGreekshadfoughtthisfight,they
thoughtthattheyhadindeedwonthevictoryagainstthepagans,andweChristiansweregreatlyrelieved.Butafter
beingdrivenbackfromthebarbicanstheTurksagainfiredtheirgreatcannon,andthepaganslikehoundscameon
behindthesmokeofthecannon,ragingandpressingoneachotherlikewildbeasts,sothatinthespaceofaquarter
ofanhourthereweremorethanthirtythousandTurksinsidethebarbicans,withsuchcriesthatitseemedavery
inferno,andtheshoutingwasheardasfarawayasAnatolia.WhentheTurksgotinsidethebarbicans,theyquickly
capturedthefirstrowofthem,butbeforetheymanagedthis,agreatnumberofthemdiedatthehandsofthosewho
wereabovethemonthewalls,whokilledthemwithstonesattheirpleasure.Afterhavingcapturedthefirstrow,the
Turkstogetherwiththeaxapimadethemselvesstrongthere,andthentherecameinsidethebarbicansagood
seventythousandTurkswithsuchforcethatitseemedaveryinferno,andsoonthebarbicansfromoneendtothe
other,afullsixmiles,werefullofTurks.AsIhavesaidbefore,thoseonthewallskilledgreatnumbersofTurkswith
stones,castingthemdownfromabovewithoutstopping,andsomanywerekilledthatfortycartscouldnothave
carriedawaythedeadTurkswhohaddiedbeforegettingintothecity.WeChristiansnowwereveryfrightened,and
theEmperorhadthetocsinsoundedthroughthewholecity,andatthepostsonthewalls,witheverymancrying,
"Mercy,EternalGod!"Mencriedout,andwomentoo,andthenunsandtheyoungwomenmostloudlyofall,and
therewassuchlamentationthateventhemostcruelJewwouldhavefeltpity.Seeingthis,ZuanZustignan,that
GenoeseofGenoa,decidedtoabandonhispost,andfledtohisship,whichwaslyingattheboom.TheEmperor
hadmadethisZuanZustignancaptainofhisforces,andashefled,hewentthroughthecitycrying,"TheTurkshave
gotintothecity!"Butheliedinhisteeth,becausetheTurkswerenotyetinside.Whenthepeopleheardtheir
captain'swords,thattheTurkshadgotintothecity,theyallbegantotakeflight,andallabandonedtheirpostsat
onceandwentrushingtowardstheharbourinthehopeofescapingintheshipsandthegalleys.Atthismomentof
confusion,whichhappenedatsunrise,ouromnipotentGodcametoHismostbitterdecisionanddecidedtofulfillall
theprophecies,asIhavesaid,andatsunrisetheTurksenteredthecitynearSanRomano,wherethewallshadbeen
razedtothegroundbytheircannon.Butbeforetheyentered,therewassuchafiercestrugglebetweentheTurksand
theChristiansinthecitywhoopposedthem,andsomanyofthemdied,thatagoodtwentycartscouldhavebeen
filledwiththecorpsesofthefirstTurks.Thenthesecondwavefollowedthefirstandwentrushingaboutthecity,and
anyonetheyfoundtheyputtothescimitar,womenandmen,oldandyoung,ofanycondition.Thisbutcherylasted
fromsunrise,whentheTurksenteredthecity,untilmidday,andanyonewhomtheyfoundwasputtothescimitarin
theirrage.Thoseofourmerchantswhoescapedhidthemselvesinundergroundplaces,andwhenthefirstmad
slaughterwasover,theywerefoundbytheTurksandwerealltakenandsoldasslaves.
TheTurksmadeeagerlyforthepiazza,fivemilesfromthepointwheretheymadetheirentranceatSan
Romano,andwhentheyreachedit,atoncesomeofthemclimbedupatowerwheretheflagsofSaintMarkandthe
MostSereneEmperorwereflying,andtheycutdowntheflagofSaintMarkandtookawaytheflagoftheMost
SereneEmperor,andthenonthesametowertheyraisedtheflagoftheSultan.Whentheyhadtakenawaythese
twoflags,thoseofSaintMarkandoftheEmperor,andraisedtheflagoftheTurkishdog,thenallweChristianswho
wereinthecitywerefullofsorrowbecauseithadbeencapturedbytheTurks.Whentheirflagwasraisedandours
cutdown,wesawthatthewholecitywastaken,andthattherewasnofurtherhopeofrecoveringfromthis.
NowIshalltelloftheeventsatsea,sinceIhavetoldofwhathappenedonland.Onehourbeforedawnthe
fleetgotunderwayfromtheColumnswhereitwasanchored,andittookupapositionbytheharbourboomready
togivebattlethere.Buttheiradmiralsawthatourharbourwaswelldefendedwithshipsandgalleys,particularlyat
theboomwherethereweretenlargeshipsofeighthundredbotteandupwards,andsincehewasafraidofourfleet,
hedecidedtogoandfightbehindthecityonthesideoftheDardanellesandleavetheharbourwithoutfighting,and
sotheywentonlandthere,partofthemdisembarkingbytheGiudecca,soastohavebetteropportunityofgetting
booty,therebeinggreatrichesinthehousesoftheJews,principallyjewels.Theseventyfusteinsidetheharbour
whichhadbeendraggedoverthehillofPera,commandedbyZaganPasha,allwenttogetherandattackedthecity
ataplacecalledFanari,andtheChristiansonthispartofthewallsbravelydrovethemback.
ButwhenthemenintheseshipssawthattheChristianshadlostConstantinople,andthatthestandardof
MahometBeytheTurkwasraisedovertheprincipaltowerofthecity,andthatthestandardsofSaintMarkandof
theEmperorhadbeencutdownandlowered,thentheyalldisembarked.Andatthesametimeallthoseinthefleet
ontheDardanellessidedisembarkedandlefttheirshipsbytheshorewithoutanyoneinthem,becausetheywereall
runningfuriouslylikedogsintothecitytoseekoutgold,jewelsandothertreasure,andtotakemerchantsprisoner.
Theysoughtoutthemonasteries,andallthenunswereledtothefleetandravishedandabusedbytheTurks,and
thensoldatauctionforslavesthroughoutTurkey,andalltheyoungwomenalsowereravishedandthensoldfor
whatevertheywouldfetch,althoughsomeofthempreferredtocastthemselvesintothewellsanddrownratherthan
fallintothehandsoftheTurks,asdidanumberofmarriedwomenalso.TheTurksloadedalltheirshipswith
prisonersandwithanenormousquantityofbooty.Theirpracticewas,thatwhentheywentintoahouse,atonce
theyraisedupaflagwiththeiremblemonit,andwhenotherTurkssawthisflagflying,theyleftthishousealone,and
wentinsearchofanotherhousewithoutaflag,andsotheyputtheirflagseverywhere,evenonthemonasteriesand
churches.AsfarasIcanestimate,therewouldhavebeentwohundredthousandoftheseflagsflyingonthehouses
alloverConstantinople:somehouseshadasmanyasten,becauseoftheexcitementwhichtheTurksfeltathaving
wonsuchagreatvictory.Fortherestofthedaytheseflagswerekeptflyingonthehouses,andallthroughtheday
theTurksmadeagreatslaughterofChristiansthroughthecity.Thebloodflowedinthecitylikerainwaterinthe
guttersafterasuddenstorm,andthecorpsesofTurksandChristianswerethrownintotheDardanelles,wherethey
floatedouttosealikemelonsalongacanal.NoonecouldhearanynewsoftheEmperor,whathehadbeendoing,
orwhetherhewasdeadoralive,butsomesaidthathisbodyhadbeenseenamongthecorpses,anditwassaidthat
hehadhangedhimselfatthemomentwhentheTurksbrokeinattheSanRomanogate.

NowthatConstantinoplehadfallen,andsincetherewasnothingfurthertobehopedfor,ourownpeople
preparedtosavethemselvesandourfleet,allthegalleysandships,andgetthemoutoftheharbour,breakingthe
boomacrosstheentrance.SoAluvixeDiedo,officerincommandoftheharbourandcaptainofthegalleysfrom
Tana,seeingthatthewholeofConstantinoplehadbeencaptured,atoncedisembarkedatPera,andwenttothe
PodestaofPera,anddiscussedwithhimwhatshouldbedonewithourfleet,whetheritshouldmakeitsescape,or
prepareitselftodobattlewithallitsshipsandgalleys.AndwhenAluvixeDiedoaskedtheadviceofthePodestaof
Pera,thePodestasaid,"Mastercaptain,waithereinPera,andIshallsendanambassadortotheSultan,andwe
shallseewhetherweGenoeseandVenetiansshallhavewarorpeacewithhim."Butwhilethisdiscussionwastaking
place,thePodestahadthegatesofhistownshut,andshutthecaptaininside,withBartoloFiurianthearmourerof
thegalleysofTana,andNicoldBarbarothesurgeonofthegalleys.Wewhowereshutupthererealisedthatwe
wereinaseriousposition:theGenoesehaddonethis,inordertoputourgalleysandourpropertyintothehandsof
theTurks,andnoambassadorwassent.
Nowthatwewereshutupintheirtown,thegalleysatoncebegantosetuptheirsailsandspreadthemout,
andbringtheiroarsinboard,withtheintentionofgoingawaywithouttheircaptain.Butthecaptain,whorealisedthat
hewasindangerofbeingimprisoned,wasablebydintoffairwordstopersuadethePodestatoreleasethem,and
theygotoutofthetownandboardedtheirgalleysquicklyandassoonastheyhaddonethis,theybegantokedge
themselvesuptotheboomwhichwasacrosstheharbour.Whenwereachedtheboom,wecouldnotgetpastit,
becauseitstretchedallthewaybetweenthetwocitiesofConstantinopleandPera.Buttwobravemenleapeddown
ontooneofthewoodensectionsoftheboom,andwithacoupleofaxescutthroughitandwequicklyhauled
ourselvesoutsideit,andsailedtoaplacecalledtheColumnsbehindPera,wheretheTurkishfleethadbeen
anchored.Hereinthisplacewewaiteduntilmidday,toseeifanyofourmerchantscouldreachthegalleys,butnone
ofthemwereabletodoso,becausetheyhadallbeencaptured.SoatmiddaywiththehelpofourLordGod,
AluvixeDiedo,thecaptainofthegalleysfromTana,madesailonhisgalley,andthenthegalleyofJeruolemo
MorexiniandthegalleyofTrebizondwithitsvicemasterDolfinDolfindidthesame.ThisgalleyofTrebizondhad
greatdifficultyingettingitssailsupbecauseahundredandsixtyfourofitscrewweremissing,someofthem
drowned,somedeadinthebombardmentorkilledinotherwaysduringthefighting,sothattheycouldonlyjust
managetoraisetheirsails.ThenthelightgalleyofCabrielTrivixansetsail,althoughhehimselfwasstillinthecityin
thehandsoftheTurks.ThegalleyofCandiawithZacariaGrioni,theknight,asmaster,wascaptured.Thenbehind
thesegalleystheresailedthreeshipsofCandia,underZuanVenierandAntonioFilamati,"TheHen,"andweall
sailedsafelytogether,shipsandgalleys,outthroughthestraits,withanorthwindblowingatmorethantwelvemiles
anhour.Hadtherebeenacalmoraverylightbreeze,wewouldallhavebeencaptured.Whenwesetsailfor
Constantinople,thewholeoftheTurkisfleetwasunarmedandallthecaptainsandcrewshadgoneintothecityto
sackit.Youcanbesurethatiftheirfleethadbeeninaction,noasinglevesselcouldhaveescaped,buttheTurks
wouldhavehadthemasprizesofwar,becausewewereshutupinsidetheboom,buttheyabandonedtheirfleet.
Fifteenshipsstayedinsidetheharbour,belongingtotheGenoese,totheEmperorandtothepeopleofAnconaalso
alltheEmperor'sgalleys,numberingfive,whichhadbeendisarmed,andalsotherestayedalltheothervesselswhich
wereintheharbour,andtheshipsandgalleyswhichcouldnotescapewereallcapturedbytheTurks.Butapart
fromthesefifteenships,sevenbelongingtotheGenoesewhichwerebytheboomescaped,andonewhichwasoff
Pera,belongingtoZorziDoriaofGenoa,ofabouttwothousandfourhundredbotte,escapedwiththeotherseven
towardsevening.
Thefightinglastedfromdawnuntilnoon,andwhilethemassacrewentoninthecity,everyonewaskilled
butafterthattimetheywerealltakenprisoner.OurBailo,JeruolemoMinoto,hadhisheadcutoffbyorderofthe
SultanandthiswastheendofthecaptureofConstantinople,whichtookplaceintheyearonethousandfour
hundredandfiftythree,onthetwentyninthofMay,whichwasaTuesday.
[Thetextcontinues,withNicoloaddingalistofthosekilledandtakenprisonerduringthesiege.]
ThistextisfromNicoloBarbaro,DiaryoftheSiegeofConstantinople1453,trans.JohnMelvilleJones(New
York,1969).WethankProfessorMelvilleJonesforhispermissiontorepublishthistranslation.

TheSiegeofConstantinople(1453),accordingtoNicoloBarbaro
ThediaryofNicoloBarbaroisperhapsthemostdetailedandaccurateeyewitnessaccountofthesiegeandfallof
Constantinople.Nicolowasasurgeonbyprofession,andamemberofoneofthepatricianfamiliesofVenice.His
accountoftenfocusesontheactivitiesofhisfellowVenetians,sometimestothedetrimentoftheGreeksandGenoese
whowerealsodefendingthecity.Theworkiswrittenlikeadiary,withdailyentries.Navalaffairsarealsoprominentin
thisaccount.TheportionrepublishedbelowstartsafterNicolodiscussestheeventsleadinguptothesiegeandthe
preparationsmadebythedefenderstofortifythecity.
Herebeginsthestoryofthesiegeofthecity,andnowtherefollowsthebattlesfromdaytoday,asshallbeseen
fromwhatfollows.
OnthefifthofthemonthofApril,onehourafterdaybreak,MahometBeycamebeforeConstantinoplewith
aboutahundredandsixtythousandmen,andencampedabouttwoandahalfmilesfromthewallsofthecity.
Onthesixthofthismonth,theTurkishEmperormovedwithhalfhisforcetowithinamileofthewallsofthe
city.
Ontheseventhofthismonth,hemovedwithagreatpartofhisforcestowithinaboutaquarterofamileof
thewalls,andtheyspreadinalinealongthewholelengthofthecitywalls,whichwassixmiles,fromtheCrescagate
totheChinigo.
NowthattheTurkshadtakenthefieldwithagreatarmyagainstthecity,preparationsbegantobemade,so
thatthisheathenenemyofChristendomshouldnotsucceedinhisplansagainstus,andbytheorderoftheMost
SereneEmperor,everyofficerinchargeofagateortoweroranyothercommandwenttohispostwithhismento
keepguardagainstourenemy.
OnthesixthofAprilalsotheMostSereneEmperorlefthispalaceandtookhisstandonthewallsonthe
landwardsideatagatecalledCressu.Thisgatewasweakerthananyotherlandgate,andtherewaswiththeMost
SereneEmperoragreatpartofhisbaronsandknightstokeephimcompanyandsupporthim,butneverthelessthe
MostSereneEmperorhadgravedoubtsallthewhileconcerningthetreacherousTurkhisenemy,whowaswaiting
fromdaytodaytojoinbattlewithhim.
AgainonthesixthofthismonthJeruolemoMinoto,ourVenetianBailo,alsolefthispalaceandwenttothe
palaceoftheMostSereneEmperor,becauseitwasnearthelandwalls.Hecametoseethearrangementswhich
werebeingmadearoundthewalls,andalsotomakesurethatnooneenteredthepalaceandtherewereinthe
palacemanyofournobleme