19.02.

1602: A French Aristocrat who Fought Ottoman Turks in Hungary

Philippe-emmanuel-de-mercoeur
Photo Credit To https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/01/Philippe-emmanuel-de-mercoeur.jpg

This day in 1602 marked the death of French duke Philippe Emmanuel from the Lorraine dynasty, in Nuremberg. He held the title of duc de Mercœur, and also the title duc de Penthièvre through his wife. He was also a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire, and a Peer of France (the highest aristocratic rank in the country).

Philippe Emmanuel, duc de Mercœur was an important commander during the French religious wars in the 16th century. Like other members of the Lorraine dynasty, he fought on the side of the Catholic League (his cousin – the powerful duc de Guise – was one of the leaders of the League).

The duc de Mercœur is also interesting for his actions during the war against the Ottoman Turks on the area of what is now Hungary, on the turn of the 17th century. The duc fought in the service of Emperor Rudolf II of Habsburg, and participated in the conquest of Székesfehérvár, which was once the city where the Hungarian kings were crowned. Allegedly, the duc’s military exploits even worried the Ottoman sultan Mehmed III.

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