Battle of Athos


Battle of Athos

The naval Battle of Mount Athos (also known as the Battle of Monte Sancto and the Battle of Lemnos) took place from 19-29 June, 1807 and was a key naval battle of the Russo-Turkish War (1806-12, part of the Napoleonic Wars). It was fought a month after the Russians under Dmitry Senyavin had defeated the Turks in the naval Battle of the Dardanelles. The victory ensured Russia's supremacy in the Archipelago for the rest of the war.

The battle was triggered by Senyavin's retreat from the Dardanelles, which he had been blockading since March, towards the Russian naval base at Tenedos. The Turkish commander, Kapudan Pasha Seyit-Ali, ventured with 9 battleships, 5 frigates and 5 other vessels out of the strait into the Aegean Sea. Thereupon Senyavin returned to cut off his retreat and fell upon the Ottoman fleet halfway between Mount Athos and Lemnos.

From his previous experience, Senyavin had learned that the Ottomans fought bravely unless their flagship was sunk or taken captive. He therefore ordered Aleksey Greig and other captains of his battleships to concentrate their attack on the three Turkish flagships, whilst other Russian vessels were to prevent Turkish frigates from delivering help.

The Russians approached in two parallel lines of five battleships each, turning north to run alongside the Turkish line. During the battle 3 Ottoman battleships and four frigates - around one third of the Sultan's fleet - were either sunk or forced aground. The rest retired to the safety of the Dardanelles. On the way they scuttled another battleship and a frigate near Thasos on 4 July and lost a frigate and a sloop near Samothrace on about July 5.

As a result of the battle, the Ottoman Empire lost a combat-capable fleet for more than a decade and signed an armistice with Russia on August 12.

ee also

*Athos order of battle
*Dardanelles Operation

References

*"Naval wars in the Levant 1559-1853" (1952) - R. C. Anderson. ISBN 1-57898-538-2

External links

* [http://www.neva.ru/EXPO96/book/chap6-3.html Description of the battle]


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