On this day: a truce is called

This image, taken on the 24th of May, 1915, shows Australian and Turkish troops collecting the dead after a nine-hour truce was called at the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey.

After an attack from the Turks five days earlier that left more than 3000 dead, the stench became so strong both sides agreed to remove the bodies.

The fighting in Turkey came to be commemorated in Australia and New Zealand as Anzac Day on the 25th of April each year.

Anzac_truce_24_May_1915 Scene in no man's land at Anzac during the truce of 24 May 1915, organised to bury the Turkish dead from the attack of 19 May, in which an estimated 3,000 men wer

On this day: a king for Albania

Duits circusartiest Otto Witte (1872-1958), ex-officier van het Turkse.

Otto Witte – a German circus performer – claimed he was crowned King of Albania on the 13th of August, 1913.

When Albania broke free of the Ottoman Empire and Serbian occupation, a Muslim prince named Halim Eddine was invited to be crowned king. Witte apparently bore a strong resemblance to the prince, and claimed to have gone in his place.

Halim Eddine did not exist.

There are not facts to back Witte’s claims, but it did not stop him becoming famous in Germany, where he also claimed to be the founder of a political party – that also did not exist.

On this day: the Battle of Lepanto

The Battle of Lepanto 7 October 1571 when a fleet of the Holy League, a coalition of European Catholic maritime states, decisively defeated the fleet of the Ottoman Empire on the northern edge of the Gulf of Corinth.

On the 7th of October, 1571, the Holy League destroyed Ottoman Empire forces in the Battle of Lepanto.
The coalition, made up of European Catholic maritime forces and organised by Pope Pius V, met the Turkish forces sailing west at the Gulf of Corinth, Greece.

The battle concluded at about 4pm.

The Holy League lost around 7500 soldiers, sailors and rowers, but they freed about as many Christian prisoners. The Ottomans lost around 15000, and at least 3500 were taken prisoner.

On this day: the Siege of Vienna

The Ottoman Turks began their Siege of Vienna on the 27th of September 1529. Suleiman the Magnificent led the Ottoman Empire’s first attempt to take Vienna.

The siege ran until the 15th of October, when the Christian Coalition defeated the Ottomans.

Austrian troops clash with Turks outside Vienna.

Engraving of clashes between the Austrians and Ottomans outside Vienna, 1529.

On this day: Gallipoli in 1915

Australian and New Zealand soldiers land in Turkey on what will go on to become Anzac Day.

Anzac Beach at 8am on 25 April 1915. Men from the Australian 4th Battalion (1st Brigade) and Jacob’s 26th Indian Mountain Battery are seen landing. The men in the foreground belong to the 1st Brigade staff. At the water’s edge is the body of Sapper R. Reynolds, one of the first men to be killed at Gallipoli.

Photographer: L-Cpl. Arthur Robert Henry Joyner (1st Division Signal Company, killed 5 December 1916 at Bazentin, Somme).

Anzac Beach 4th Bn landing 8am April 25 1915.

On this day: the Great Fire of Smyrna began

Smyrna citizens trying to reach the Allied ships during the Smyrna massacres, 1922

Smyrna citizens trying to reach the Allied ships

The Great Fire of Smyrna destroyed much of Smyrna (known as İzmir today) in September 1922. It began on the 13th and was more or less extinguished by the 22nd of September. It effectively marked the end of the Greco-Turkish War.

Smyrna fire, A wide view of the city on fire. 14.Sep.1922. 0600 AM.

The city on fire. 14th September. 0600 AM.

At the outbreak of the fire, up to 400 000 Greek and Armenian refugees were forced to remain on the waterfront while Turkish troops committed massacres.

The death toll from the fire is disputed, but Greek and Armenian deaths are placed somewhere between 50 000 and 100 000.

Izmir,_after_the_fire_in_192215thSeptember

The aftermath.