Bayezid II ascended the Ottoman throne in 1481. Like his father, Bayezid II was a patron of western and eastern culture and unlike many other Sultans, worked hard to ensure a smooth running of domestic politics, which earned him the epithet of "the Just". Throughout his reign, Bayezid II engaged in numerous campaigns to conquer the Venetian possessions in Morea, accurately defining this region as the key to future Ottoman naval power in the Eastern Mediterranean. The last of these wars ended in 1501 with Bayezid II in control of the whole Peloponnese. Rebellions in the east, such as that of the Qizilbash, plagued much of Bayezid II's reign and were often backed by the Shah of Persia, Ismail, who was eager to promote Shi'ism to undermine the authority of the Ottoman state. Ottoman authority in Anatolia was indeed seriously threatened during this period, and at one point Bayezid II's grand vizier, Ali Pasha, was killed in battle against rebels.
Bayezid II's final years saw a succession battle between his sons Selim I and Ahmet. Ahmet unexpectedly captured Karaman, an Ottoman city, and began marching to Constantinople to exploit his triumph. Fearing for his safety, Selim staged a revolt in Thrace but was defeated by Bayezid and forced to flee back to the Crimean Peninsula. Bayezid II developed fears that Ahmet might in turn kill him to gain the throne and refused to allow his son to enter Constantinople.
Selim returned from Crimea and, with support from the Janissaries, forced his father to abdicate the throne on April 25, 1512. Beyazid departed for retirement in his native Demotika, but he died on May 26, 1512 at Büyükçekmece before reaching his destination, and only a month after his abdication. He was buried next to the Bayezid Mosque in Istanbul.