Selected Passages from Hungarian-Ottoman Wars

13 April 1543 A Turk-Hungarian clash at the Kapos River

The Hungarian warriors coming from the garrisons of Székesfehérvár, Simontornya, Ozora, and from other castles made a surprise attack on the Castles of Szekszárd and Szekcső which were in Turk’s hands. 
Szekszárd Castle, 16th century
The Sandjak Bey of Mohács, Kászim wrote the next letter to the Sublime Port:
“It was on 4 April (in the Muslim calendar it was the 28th day of Zillihidzse month) when a great number of rider unit and a few infantrymen went to hiding at night near Szekszárd Castle and the picked horsemen attacked the castle in the dawn. At this time, we took the gathered Ghazi warriors and went out to face them and a fierce fight has been developed. Agha Ejnekhán, the Agha of the riders in the above-mentioned fort, was fighting very valiantly and finally, he was martyred and many were injured. We have slaughtered a great number of Ghiaurs, several of them were wounded but some of them were captured alive…”
Szekszárd (Photo: Thaler Tamas)
The Hungarians’ surprise attack was unsuccessful, and the small fort remained in Ottoman hands but the attackers at least were able to snare out the defenders who suffered huge losses, just like the attackers, as we have read from Bey Kászim’s report.
The attack against the Castle of (Duna)Szekcső took place on the same day whereas “those Ghiaurs who were not taken into captivity, they came together at a place again and they rushed to Castle Szekcső. The voivode of the fort came out to meet them with his riders and they clashed with each other. While a few got wounded among the warriors of the True Faith, four or five high-ranked warriors fell from the evil-hearted Ghiaurs.” 
From this report, we can conclude two things: the Hussars who had attacked Szekszárd certainly didn’t suffer that many casualties because “they came together at a place again”. Moreover, they were able to lure out the enemy from the castle.
A Hungarian Hussar, 16th century
Four days later, those Hungarians who had taken part in the surprise attack were coming together on the southern bank of the Kapos River and there they were attacked by the men of the Bey of Mohács castle:
“And again, on the 8th day of the mentioned month (13 April), we were informed about the coming together of the evil-hearted Ghiaurs, I sent two of my men, Jahja and Hajdervojvodák in charge of a rider unit to catch some tongues.
Ottoman Deli riders with wings and flags
They discovered the meeting point of the Ghiaurs and met the Ghiaurs of Usztolni-Belgirád (Székesfehérvár) near the Kapos River. They clashed with them and a very fierce fight took place from both sides but from the mercy of the Almighty Allah…the army of Faith’s enemy (the Christians) was crushed and beaten. When they wanted to flee, the (Turks) rushed over them and put them all to the edge of the sword…Our spies and the captured tongues took the news to us that the unfortunate Ferdinandus (King Ferdinand) had written a letter to the Hungarian beys of this area in which he ordered his men to set all those castles, cities, and villages on fire that had surrendered themselves to the mercy of His Majesty the Padishah (the Sultan). As they were getting prepared to carry this order out, we didn’t rest for a minute either day or night.
Ottoman soldiers
We have sent our servant Hajdervojvoda to you with twenty heads of high-ranked Ghiaurs which we had cut off in the fight and also one of the two Ghiaurs who we captured near Szekszárd. These two Ghiaurs had hidden there to take some tongues but they fell into our hands.” wrote Bey Kászim about the security measures taken in the next days because Sultan Suleiman’s army was approaching Hungary.
the marching order of the Ottoman army
In short: the Hungarian warriors attacked Szekszárd and Szekcső on 4 April but it was only successful in part. Then, the Hungarians were coming together at their meeting point near the Kapos River but the warriors of the Bey of Mohács ambushed them on 13 April and killed them all.
The siege of Székesfehérvár, 1543
We don’t know how many Hungarian warriors had taken part in this raid but their number must have been missing when Székesfehérvár was besieged by the Sultan. It was all the more painful loss because always the most seasoned and skilled Hussars participated in such raids.
You can read more about the fall of Székesfehérvár on my page:
Source: Szibler Gábor

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