Sultan Mehmed II, the Conquerer Suprisingly, there haven't been many threads on this topic, despite seeming like perfect Alternate History fodder. Anyways... Sultan Mehmed II, the Great Conqueror, spent a good deal of his life on the warpath. After adding Genoese Crimea to his growing empire, the Sultan turned his gaze to the lands of the Italian city states. Gedik Ahmed Pasha took the city of Otranto before returning to Albania to reinforce it later as a base for further expansion. The Pope prepared to flee Rome, seeing the danger of the full weight of an Ottoman expedition being brought down on the peninsula. Ottomans raided settlements along the coast heavily, preparing for a campaign to begin in earnest. When he died suddenly at the age of 49, the Sultan was already marching with his army to launch a campaign against Southern Italy and Rhodes. The fear surrounding this (and the vast relief when he just keeled over and died) in Italy, plus Mehmed's highly successful career as a campaigner seem to indicate that an Ottoman conquest of Southern Italy was possible and even likely. The Venetians refused to answer the Pope's call to defend Rome - having just finished hammering out an expensive peace with the Sultan that protected them from harm. So, what happens if Mehmed II takes Rome? Does he have a big ceremony where he's coronated as the new Roman Emperor - Mehmed was already quite the Romanophile and claimed the title of Caesar. Does he appoint a new Pope in place of Sixtus IV, who has likely fled the city? Is there a new Catholic millet created in the Ottoman Empire? What does this great victory for the Ottomans mean for the rest of Europe? What does Mehmed (who might live for a good deal longer afterwards, being only 49) do after he has taken yet another monumentally important city? Edit: Alternately, would it be better for the Ottomans to leave after their conquest, and simply view it as a military ghazwa meant to grab loot from their enemies and raze their cities? This option has the benefit of not requiring them to stay in Italy, while still crippling the Italian city-states and enriching Ottoman coffers for conquest closer to home. Tagging resident Ottoman experts, @Koprulu Mustafa Pasha and @Jonathan Edelstein in this, for good measure.