The Ottoman Empire

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The Ottoman Empire
The Osman were given land by the Seljuk for their help in defending against the Mongols. The Osmans expanded as the Seljuk Empire began to disintegrate. The Osmans founded the Ottoman Empire expanded into the Balkans. The Ottomans soon came into conflict with the Byzantines. They recruited Christians in the Balkans, who they converted to Islam and enlisted in their Janissaries corps. In 1453 the Ottomans laid siege to and the captured Constantinople the Byzantine capital. The conquering Ottomans totally sacked the city, In the first part of the 15th century the Ottomans swiftly expanded their empire to include Mesopotamia, Egypt and Arabia. The Ottomans soon controlled the major holy cities of Islam, Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem. Selim the Ottoman leader declared himself the new caliph (successor of Muhammad). The Ottomans swiftly expanded westward along the African coast nearly to the Straits of Gibraltar. The Ottomans also expanded in Europe; they conquered Romania, and most of Hungary. In 1529 the Ottoman advance was checked when they were defeated at Vienna. Suleyman the Magnificent led the assault on Vienna, after him the Ottomans began a slow decline. Their administrative control was weakened. The Ottomans were defeated at the battle of Carlowitz in 1699. From that moment on the ottomans began to lose parts of their empire to the expanding European powers.