Gašpar Alapić is a person that could come straight from some high – budget Hollywood historical spectacle.
Birth, life and death
He was born sometimes in the first half of 16. century in the village Vukovina near Zagreb in noble family. Although he was short and hunchbacked, he prove himself as a great military commander who fought and won many battles against Turks. His greatest victory was against sandžak – beg Mohammad of Tirbala in battle of Siklos in Hungary, 17. of June 1566.
In 1574. he was elected as Croatian ban. Ban was Croatian viceroy and supreme military leader. Because of Turkish threat and attacks this title brought him more troubles than benefits because he had to give a lot of money for warfare so he tried to pass that honor to someone else. He finally succeeded in 1978.
Alapić died 4. of April in 1584. in the place where he was born and was buried, by his wish, in the church in Remete beside his father.
In their endeavour to conquer Vienna, center of European civilization, In 1566. Turks besieged Hungarian city Siget. They mustered large army with 100 000 soldiers and 300 cannons under command of none other than Suleiman I. the Magnificent. Siget was defended by 2500 warriors led by croatian commander Nikola Šubić Zrinski, uncle of Gašpar Alapić. Zrinski named Alapić as his deputy in case of his death.
After more that a month of siege, city was in fiery ruins and defenders decided that they can no longer defend city and that they would rather try to break siege and die then to surrender. Commander Zrinski referred to his 600 surviving soldiers with these words: „I, Nikola noble Zrinski, promise first to the almighty God, then to his Majesty our glorious ruler and our poor country and to you, my knights, that I will never leave you but I will live and die with you and endure good and evil. So help me God.“
Then they opened door and lowered the drawbridge. Juraj Horvat made a breach in turkish army with his cannon and then the heroes charged.
Only four of them survived. Gašpar Alapić, secretary Franjo Črnko, Gerancij and Stjepan Oršić. Alapić dressed himself as a common soldier so that he won’t be executed in case he was captured.
Turks were impressed with their heroism so he was ransomed by Zrinski’s son Juraj for only 500 forints.
In 1573. rebellion broke out. Unsatisfied with high taxes, rent for land and terror of noble Franjo Tahy, croatian and slovenian peasants rioted under leadership of Matija Gubec against government demanding better conditions.
Villagers’ army was succesful in repelling Tahy’s forces who were sent to repress rebellion so he sent Alapić with strong and well armed cavalry. He first defeated peasants in two battles at Kerestinec and Mokrice. Finally he defeated Matija Gubec and his main forces 9. 2. 1573. at the battle of Stubičke Toplice.
Afterwards he mercilessly slaughter leaders of the rebellion and punish other villagers who participated.