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Ottoman-Habsburg Wars (1521-1791)

Images from eight wars fought between 1570 and 1718


Siege of Stuhlweissenberg, 1601

ALBA REGALE CITTA IN HVNGARIA / Presa da Christiani l’ano 1601

published 1601

Engraving; printed on paper; mounted on paper (Mount Type B) | 13.9 x 18.9 cm (image and sheet) | RCIN 721115

A view of the siege and taking of Turkish-held Stuhlweissenberg by the Imperial Habsburg army commanded by Philippe Emmanuel, Duke of Mercoeur (9 September 1558-19 February 1602), 9-20 September 1601. Ottoman-Habsburg Wars: The Long War (1591/3-1606).

The taking of Székesfehérvár from the Ottoman Empire by the army of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolph II (18 July1552-20 January 1612) was largely achieved by the commanding presence of the spiritual advisor, Lawrence (Saint Lawrence) of Brindisi (Giulio Cesare Russo, 22 July 1559-22 July 1619) who urged the Imperial troops, who were greatly inferior in numbers to the Turks, forwards to victory.

The city was occupied by the Ottomans from 1543 to 1688 except for a brief period in 1601-2 when the Imperial Habsburg army occupied the town. This print shows that the Imperial flag has been planted everywhere in the city where only a handful of Turks remain.

The action at Stuhlweissenburg was the subject of a now lost play, one of a genre dealing with Christian opposition to the constantly encroaching Muslim enemy. Entitled ‘Comedy showing how Stuhlweissenburg was taken first by the Turks and then again recaptured by the Christians’ was staged in London on 13 September 1602, just two weeks after it again fell to the Turks on 29 August 1602.

A graphic account of the siege and the following battle is given by one of the participants, John Smith (1580-1631), one of the founders of the first English settlement in North America and leader of the Virginia Colony.

  • Giovanni Orlandi (active 1590-1646) (publisher) [along bottom of map:] Giouani Orlādi le stampa a Pasquino in Roma l’ano 1601.

  • Watermark: None visible

    Condition: no fold lines; some brown staining

  • 12.9 x 18.9 cm (neatline)

    13.9 x 18.9 cm (image and sheet)

    cropped (platemark)

    15.7 x 22.8 cm (mount)

  • Printed title:

    ALBA REGALE CITTA IN HVNGARIA / Presa da Christiani l’ano 1601. [across top of map]


    George III heading: Stuhl Weissenburg or Alba Regale Sep.r 1601.

    Other annotations: (Recto) none. (Verso) [top, on mount, cropped, red pencil:] 1/[10]9.

    George III catalogue entry:

    Stuhl Weissenburg Alba Regale Citta in Hungaria pressa da Christiani l’anno 1601: apresso Giov. Orlandi, 1601.

  • Subject(s)

    Székesfehérvár [Alba Regale], Fejér, Hungary (47°11ʹ23ʺN 18°24ʹ37ʺE)

  • Bibliographic reference(s)

    G.K. Hunter, English drama 1586-1642: the Age of Shakespeare, Oxford 1997, pp. 192-3

    M. McDonald, The Print Collection of Cassiano dal Pozzo. Part II, Architecture, Topography and Military Maps, 3 vols, London 2019, cat. no. 2779

    J. Smith, The Generall Historie of Virginia, vol. II, 1629, pp. 121-6

    Notes and Queries 7th Series, vol .IX. Jan. 18, 1890, p.42

    [An account of the siege and subsequent events is given in:] The Modern Part of an Universal History, Fom the Earliest Account of Time, vol. XII, London 1759, pp. 414-16

Page revisions

  • 14 March 2024

    New photography