Below him ranked the newly converted Moslem aristocracy, who adopted the dress, titles and etiquette of the Turkish court, without relinquishing their language or many of their old customs. They dwelt in fortified towns or castles, where the vali was only admitted on sufferance for a few days; and, at the outset, they formed a separate military caste, headed by 48 kapetans - landholders exercising unfettered authority over their retainers and Christian serfs, but bound, in return, to provide a company of mounted troops for the service of their sovereign.
His eleventh-hour conversion could not avert the conflict of interests which led to the war of 1904-5, from which Russia emerged defeated, but enabled him to veil a serious diplomatic error by relinquishing the odium of failure to his successor, Rosen.
Immediately after his coronation, he hastened to his newly won territories, accompanied by the principal civil and ecclesiastical dignitaries of Denmark, and was solemnly acknowledged lord of Northalbingia (the district lying between the Eider and the Elbe) at Lubeck, Otto IV., then in difficulties, voluntarily relinquishing all German territory north of the Elbe to Valdemar, who in return recognized Otto as German emperor.
He was a select preacher at Oxford in 1895-1897, and at Cambridge in 1900; he received a canonry in Bristol cathedral in 1893, but retained his wardenship of Toynbee Hall, while relinquishing the living of St Jude's.
The Boers, who held a river line, kept the British attack at bay all day, but eventually fell back, relinquishing the position after dark, as their right had been turned by General Pole-Carew's brigade.