The Auspicious Incident


The Auspicious Incident

The Auspicious Incident (or Event [Jason Goodwin: "Lords of the Horizons", "Chapter 24: The Auspicious Event", 1998] ) (in Turkish "Vaka-i Hayriye"; in Balkans known as "Vaka-i Şerriye" Unfortunate Incident) was the forced disbandment of the centuries-old Janissary corps by Ottoman sultan Mahmud II in June of 1826.Kinross, pp 456–457]

By the early 17th century, the Janissary corps had ceased to function as an elite military unit. Many Janissaries were not soldiers and simply extorted money from the Turkish state and dictated its government, adding to the steady decline of the Ottoman Empire. Any sultan who attempted to modernize the Ottoman military structure and replace the Janissaries was either immediately killed or deposed.

By 1826, the Janissaries were almost universally hated throughout Turkey. When they noticed that the Sultan Mahmud II was forming a new army and hiring European gunners, they mutinied, but the Sipahis forced them to retreat to their barracks in the city of Thessaloniki. In the ensuing fight the Janissary barracks were set in flames by artillery fire resulting in a massive number of casualties. Survivors were either exiled or executed and their possessions confiscated by the Sultan.

Notes

References

* Kinross, Patrick (1977) "The Ottoman Centuries: The Rise and Fall of the Turkish Empire" London: Perennial. ISBN 9780688080938
* [http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/lect11.htm Macedonia and the failure of Ottoman reforms]


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