Türkengefahr als Kommunikationsprozess. Perspektiven des „gemeinen Mannes“ in der Reformationszeit
The Ottoman Threat as a Process of Communication. Views of the Common Man in the Reformation Period
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The defeat of King Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia by the Turks in the battle of Mohacs in 1526 marked a profound break in European history. Since then the Ottoman Empire and the Habsburg Empire were face to face and there where many indications which suggested the continuation of the Muslim advance. Three years later the failed siege of Vienna by the Turks confirmed such fears. Against this backdrop the essay considers the media impact of the Ottoman Wars in the reformation period with regard to the views and perceptions of the common man in German free and imperial cities. Town chronicles could provide deep insights in the minds of the ordinary citizen but also in the process of communication of the ottoman wars. Hence the essay compares the assessments of the innumerable pamphlets with those of the mainly catholic chroniclers. Although the impact of printed media discourse improved the chroniclers knowledge about the Ottoman Wars since the mid-1520s they developed their own views. While many printed sermons and pamphlets referred to the eschatological dimension of the Ottoman threat the chroniclers preferred a more factual view. Many of them focused on the additional tax burdens on the common man and the sad fate of the common Christian soldier but hardly on the moral and theological dimension of the Muslim advance.
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