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The Battle of Lepanto was a naval engagement taking place on 7 October 1571 in which a fleet of the Holy League, a coalition of European Catholic maritime states arranged by Pope Pius V and led by Spanish admiral Don Juan of Austria, decisively defeated the fleet of the Ottoman Empire on the northern edge of the Gulf of Corinth, off western Greece. The Ottoman forces sailing westwards from their naval station in Lepanto (Turkish: ?nebaht?; Greek: Να?πακτο? or ?παχτο? Naupaktos or épahtos) met the Holy League forces, which came from Messina, Sicily, where they had previously gathered.The victory of the Holy League prevented the Ottoman Empire from expanding further along the European side of the Mediterranean. Lepanto was the last major naval battle in the Mediterranean fought entirely between galleys and has been assigned great symbolic and historical importance by several historians. (Full article...)
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