Capture of Muscat (1552)
|Capture of Muscat|
|Part of Ottoman campaign against Hormuz
Ottoman–Portuguese War (1538–1557)
Map of the Ottoman campaign against Hormuz.
|Portuguese Empire||Ottoman Empire|
|Commanders and leaders|
|60 troops||25 galleys
|Casualties and losses|
The Capture of Muscat occurred in 1552, when an Ottoman fleet under Piri Reis attacked Muscat, modern Oman, and seized the town from the Portuguese. These events followed the important Ottoman defeat in the Second Siege of Diu in 1546, which put a stop to their attempts in India, but also the successful Capture of Aden (1548), which allowed the Ottomans to resist to the Portuguese in the northwestern part of the Indian Ocean.
The city, before then a possession of the King of Hormuz, had been in Portuguese hands since 1507, when a Portuguese fleet under Afonso de Albuquerque attacked the city, destroyed it, and then back soon after to occupy it.
The Ottomans attempted to intervene against the Portuguese presence, and four Ottoman ships bombarded the city in 1546.
The city would again be attacked by the Ottomans in 1552 with a larger fleet under Piri Reis and Seydi Ali Reis. The ultimate objective was to seize the islands of Hormuz and Bahrain, in order to block Portuguese access to the Persian Gulf and thus reestablish Ottoman control of the Indian Ocean Trade.
The Ottoman force consisted in 4 galleons, 25 galleys, and 850 troops (according to Diogo do Couto, the Ottomans had 15 galleys and 1200 troops ). The recently built Fort Al-Mirani was besieged for 18 days with one piece of Ottoman artillery brought on top of a ridge. Lacking food and water, the 60 Portuguese garrison and its commander, João de Lisboa, agreed to surrender, only to be taken as captives. The fort was captured and its fortifications destroyed.
Soon however the Ottomans departed. Ultimately, they managed to occupy and control the coasts of Yemen, Aden and Arabia, as far north as Basra, so as to facilitate their trade with India and block the Portuguese from attacking the Hijaz.
The Ottomans again attacked the Portuguese possessions of the coast of India in 1553, with a raid on the Pearl Fishery Coast of South India around Tuticorin. They were assisted by the Marakkar Muslims of Malabar, and had the tacit agreement of Vittula Nayak of Madurai. 52 Portuguese were captured at Punnaikayal, and churches burnt down. The Ottomans failed however in 1553 against a Portuguese fleet at sea near al-Fahl.
Three Ottoman galleys would again occupy Muscat in 1581, and let the population escape, before the city again fell into Portuguese hands in 1588.
- Décadas da Ásia, Década Sexta, Livro X, Capítulo 1 by Diogo do Couto
- Maritime India-Trade, Religion and Polity In the Indian Ocean by Pius Malekandathil p.117
- Historical Muscat: an illustrated guide and gazetteer John Peterson p.118
- Historical Muscat: an illustrated guide and gazetteer John Peterson p.48ff