Ahmed cultivated good relations with England, in view doubtless of Russia's menacing attitude. He afforded a refuge in Turkey to Charles XII of Sweden after the Swedish defeat at the hands of Peter the Great in the Battle of Poltava in 1709. Forced against his will into war with Russia, he came nearer than any Turkish sovereign before or since to breaking the power of his northern rival, whom his grand vizier Baltaji Mahommed Pasha succeeded in completely surrounding near the Pruth in 1711.
In the treaty which Russia was compelled to sign, the Ottoman Empire obtained the restitution of Azov, the destruction of the forts built by Russia and the undertaking that the tsar should abstain from future interference in the affairs of the Poles or the Cossacks. Discontent at the leniency of these terms was so strong at Constantinople that it nearly brought on a renewal of the war.
In 1715 the Morea was taken from the Venetians. This led to hostilities with Austria, in which the Ottoman Empire was unsuccessful, and Belgrade fell into the hands of Austria in 1717. Through the mediation of England and the Netherlands the peace of Passarowitz was concluded in 1718, by which Turkey retained her conquests from the Venetians, but lost Hungary.
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