F O R C H U R C H A N D P O P E
THE ONLINE MAGAZINE OF PRO ECCLESIA ET PONTIFICE
by GRAHAM MOORHOUSE
It is not a hyperbole to describe the liberal mindset as psychotic. What do I mean by psychotic? I mean it has an inherent inability to confront, deal or cope with reality. A classic extreme example would be the lunatic claiming to be Napoleon Bonaparte....
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That is our real glorious Catholic past, not the revisionists' history written by Protestant and Secular propagandists, and lapped up by "Uncle Tom" Catholics. Few realise now just how much of our modern freedoms we owe to past Catholic heroes.
On the 12th of July 1683, the Turks, under the command of Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa Pasha, had laid siege to the walls of Vienna with an army of 150,000 men [to get an handle on an army of this size, just reflect that the Allies in WW2 had only landed 100,000 men by nightfall on D Day]. Four days after the start of a Turkish bombardment, John III Sobieski, King of Poland, marshalled his army of nearly 40,000 in Warsaw and began the 435-mile march southwest toward Vienna.
A similar force under John George III Elector of Saxony came southeast from Dresden. A third force came straight east from Munich under Maximilian II Emanuel, Elector of Bavaria. They united near Krems, some forty miles upriver from Vienna. On the 12th September, before dawn, John III Sobieski assisted at Mass in the ruined Church of the Camaldolites, offered by Blessed Marco D’Viano. Then, gathering his forces, the King commended their mission and their souls to the care of the Blessed Virgin, before leading the Holy League into battle.
By late afternoon, Sobieski’s army had reached the plain, and the Christian king, shouting “Jezus Maria ratuj!”, his lance couched in a full-tilt charge, led his Winged Hussars, their feathered plumes streaming off their backs, in what was possibly the largest cavalry charges in history, right into the heart of the Ottoman army. The Polish horsemen followed their intrepid king deeper and deeper into the belly of the Islamists, and in spite of being outnumbered three or four to one, smashed what remained of the resistance, set the followers of the false prophet to flight, relieved the siege, and carried the day. “We came, we saw, God conquered.” Sobieski wrote to Pope Innocent XI. An Ottoman soldier who survived, described the sight of the onslaught of thousands of Polish Christian knights on black horses as, “a flood of black pitch flowing down the hill, smothering and incinerating everything that lay in its path.”
The King was fifty-four years old at the time. This story was almost certainly the inspiration for J.R.Tokien's Théoden, the King of Rohan, who, in spite of his age, led the Riders of Rohan into the Battle of the Hornburg.
An interesting aside: Polish kings were elected by an electoral college, they did not inherit their thrones. To read a fuller account of the lifting of the Ottoman siege of Vienna by Catholic knights, visit this website.