The Arms of Greece and Her Balkan Neighbours in the Ottoman Period

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This magnificent book traces the history of firearms and edged weapons in Greece and the Balkans during the Ottoman era. The early developments of firearms in the later Middle Ages coincided with the Ottoman occupation of these regions, and over the following centuries they became by far the greatest centre of arms manufacturing in the Islamic world. Each town developed its own style in weaponry, decoration and costume, often with spendid results. Traditional weapons were held in great pride, and surviving guns and swords are richly ornamented with silverwork, mother-of-pearl, coral or semi-precious stones. Over 19 chapters, Robert Elgoods masterful text weaves together the story of the weapons with the deeds of their owners and the history of the region. The book culminates in the stirring story of Greek national liberation in the 1820s. To Greeks the weapons used by the heroes of their revolution are quasi-sacred objects: they fill the museums of modern Greece and are highly collectible. Representing a decade of research by a world expert in oriental arms and armour, this book is being published to coincide with a major exhibition of Greek and Balkan arms at the National Historical Museum, Athens.