The Janissaries

The Janissaries

The Janissaries

The Janissaries:A janissary is a word derived from Turkish language meaning new soldier, and it was first used by the Ottoman Sultan I around 1380. They were legally slaves who later on became a group of standing army and served as bowmen, crossbowmen and musketeers. However, they were a different group from the main military army of cavalrymen that were born from the retinues of provincial officials and dignitaries.

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A year thereafter Sultan Mustafa IV was ousted, and Mahmud II crowned as the new sultan. Mahmud built a strong pact with the reformers in his reign. He carried out the massacre of the Janissaries in their barracks. The Janissaries’ barracks were surrounded with armaments and everyone who was in killed. The Bakteshi order affiliated to the Janissaries was thereafter outlawed in December 1826. A new era of social reforms and profound military came into being when the ottomans were being attacked by some of their enemies with sophisticated armies.

Goodwin, Jason. Lords of the horizons: a history of the Ottoman Empire. New York:
H. Holt, 1999.

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