Background to Eastern Europe by F. B. Singleton, D. F. Bratchell and E. F. Candlin (Auth.)

By F. B. Singleton, D. F. Bratchell and E. F. Candlin (Auth.)

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The small land-locked Poland which was left was further whittled down by the second partition of 1793. Even this tiny fragment was eventually swallowed up in the third partition of 1795, which came after a Polish revolt against the Russians, led by the romantic national hero, Tadeusz Koskiuszko. S. Congress with the rank of Brigadier-General and the grant of American citizenship. The 1 Whilst serving as Polish representative in St. Petersburg, Poniatowski had been one of Catherine's many lovers.

Kosovo Polje lies on the route between the Aegean and the Danube, close to the historic routeway of the VardarMorava Corridor. Once this area was in the possession of the Turks the way lay open to the rich plains of the Danube, and soon the Christian kingdom of Hungary felt the fury of the invader. At the battle of Mohâcs in 1526 the Hungarian army was defeated, their young king, Louis II, perished, and there began two centuries of partition and unrest during which the heart of the land was reduced to a wilderness.

The Serbs particularly resented the behaviour of the Janissaries, originally a corps d'élite of the Sultan's army, but by 1800 an arrogant and self-seeking military clique who often acted independently of the Sultan. A tradition of patriotic banditry grew up amongst the Serbs, the outlaws being known by the Turkish name "haiduk". In 1804 the haiduks of the Sumadija area elected as their leader a farmer called George Petrovic, later known as Karageorge. He approached the Turkish authorities with a list of complaints against the Janissaries, but was put off with vague promises.

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