Siege of Nicaea (Iznik) 1328-1331 | The Battle of Pelekoanon


Siege of Nicaea (Iznik) 1328-1331 | The Battle of Pelekoanon

The Ottomans under the command of Sultan Orhan Ghazi led the siege to Nicaea (modern Iznik) in 1328 CE which lasted for four years until the conquest of the city in 1331 CE. This victory played a significant role in the expansion of the Ottoman Empire. After losing Nicaea, Byzantines lost their control in Asia Minor.

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Until 1326 CE, Ottomans under the command of Dirilis Osman, had captured most of the areas around Nicaea and also they had conquered Bursa which was made the capital of the Ottoman Empire, so close to the Byzantine’s Capital Constantinople. After restoring their control on Constantinople, Byzantines were continuously trying to restore their control on Greece.

Siege of Nicaea

As the Ottoman captured most of the areas around Nicaea, Sultan Orhan Ghazi led siege to Nicaea in 1328 CE. Nicaea was in a state of intermittent blockade from 1301 CE. As the Ottomans were in their start and have fewer resources and abilities, they failed to enter the city from the Harbour Lakeside. Because of this reason, the siege continued for almost four years.

Orhan I area map

Battle of Pelekanon

At that time, Andronikos III was the Byzantine Emperor. He tried to break the siege in 1329 CE. He commanded a host to repel the Ottomans from Nicaea and Nicomedia. Here comes the time when the Battle of Pelekanon was fought between the Byzantine Empire and the Ottoman Empire. Byzantines suffered a decisive defeat against the Ottomans. When all the efforts of Byzantines ruled out, the city fell to the Ottoman Empire in 1331 CE.

Aftermath & Legacy

In the early times, even before the origin of the Ottoman Empire, Nicaea was in Turkish hands. Byzantines conquered it in the First Crusade in 1097 CE. It had been the capital of the Latin Empire in the reign of Greek Emperors from 1204 to 1261 CE. When Ottomans conquered Nicaea, it was of much significance as the major city in Christianity, because right after this victory, Nicomedia fell in 1337 CE. By these victories the Christian Councils , which we have been discussing in the last articles, ended.

This city is of great historical significance. Byzantines & then Ottomans constructed a lot of such places which are yet present in their original structure. Visitors from all over the World come to visit places like Sultanahmet Square, Iznik Museum, Hagia Sophia Museum, Suleyman Pasa Madrasa and Cini Firinlari.