|Siege of Negroponte|
|Ottoman Empire||Republic of Venice|
|Commanders and leaders|
The Siege of Negroponte was fought between the forces of the Ottoman Empire, led by Sultan Mehmed II in person, and the garrison of the Venetian colony of Negroponte (Chalcis), the capital of the Venetian possession of Euboea in Central Greece. It lasted for almost a month, and ended in the capture of the city and the island of Euboea by the Ottomans.
Defeat of the relief fleet[edit | edit source]
The leader of the Venetian relief force was Nicolò Canal, known as "a man of letters rather than a fighter, a learned man readier to read books than direct the affairs of the sea." His fleet had 53 galleys and 18 smaller ships, a fifth of the Ottoman fleet's size. He arrived three weeks into the siege, lost his nerve and withdrew to Samothrace, asking for more help, but only Papal indulgences arrived. Canal could have broken the siege if he had attacked the Pontoon bridge the Turks depended on. Wind and tide were in his favour and the Venetians were sailing 15 knots towards it, but he lost his nerve and withdrew. He took his now mutinous fleet back to Venice and Negropont surrendered the next day.
The garrison commander, bailo Paolo Erizzo, surrendered in order to keep his head, but the Ottomans executed him by cutting him in half at the waist. Canal was tried, fined, stripped of his rank and exiled to Portogruaro.
References[edit | edit source]
- The Guinness Book of Naval Blunders, page 137
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