Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume III: The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries
II: Byzantium and the Crusades, 1261-1354, pp. [unnumbered]-68 PDF (9.6 MB)
68 A HISTORY OF THE CRUSADES larly to the port of Kaffa. Aragon, Venice, Genoa, and indirectly Orkhan were all involved, the only result being the further humiliation of Byzantium and a Byzantine promise to cede to Venice the island of Tenedos. All this was rendered even more complicated by the renewal of the civil war between John VI Cantacuzenus and the legitimate emperor, his son-in-law John V Palaeologus. Sentiment in Constantinople began to favor the legitimate dynasty, especially after the advance of the Ottoman Turks across the Dardanelles and their seizure of Gallipoli. The population of Constantinople was seized by panic and the position of the usurper Cantacuzenus became untenable. The prominent scholar-statesman of the period Demetrius Cydones testifies that lamentations resounded throughout Constantinople as the citizens wailed, "Are not all of us within the walls caught as if in the net of the barbarians?" 137 John V, meanwhile, to secure Genoese support, had promised them the Greek island of Lesbos, and in November 1354, with Genoese help, the partisans of John V were able to force their way into Constantinople. Compelled to abdicate, John Cantacuzenus entered a monastery and thenceforth took no further part in politics, spending his last years writing his famous history and theological tracts defending hesychasm. The Byzantine empire seemed on the verge of complete collapse. 137. PG, CLIV, col. 1013.
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