Major historian Andrew Wheatcroft reveals the full story behind four centuries of Ottoman incursions into the heartlands of Europe.
In 1683, two empires — the Ottoman, based in Constantinople, and the Habsburg dynasty in Vienna — came face to face in the culmination of a 250-year-old struggle for power at the Great Siege of Vienna. Within the city walls, the choice of resistance over surrender to the largest army ever assembled by the Turks created an all-or-nothing scenario: every last survivor would be enslaved or ruthlessly slaughtered.
Although it was their most famous attack, the 1683 siege was the historical culmination of the Turks’ sustained attempt to march westwards and finally obtain the city they had long called “The Golden Apple.” Their defeat was to mark the beginning of the decline of the Ottoman Empire.
With Turkey now seeking to re-orient itself towards the West and with a new generation of politicians exploiting the residual tensions between East and West, The Enemy at the Gate provides a timely and masterful account of this most complex and epic of conflicts.