The city was looted for three days, in accordance with the traditional Muslim punishment allotted to a city that had resisted a siege, but Mehmed restrained his troops out of respect for the ancient but now conquered empire. After the area was secured, Mehmed entered the city in a ceremonial procession where the local population brought him flowers in congratulations.
In Mehmet's view, he was the successor to the Roman Emperor, but he was nicknamed "the Conqueror", and Constantinople became the new capital of the Ottoman Empire. [[Hagia Sophia]] was converted into a mosque, although the [[Church of Constantinople]] remained intact, and [[Gennadius II (Scholarius)|Gennadius Scholarius]] was appointed [[Patriarch]] of Constantinople. The Peloponnesian fortress of Mystras held out until 1460, and the autonomous Byzantine state in Trebizond did not fall until 1461.
Many Greeks fled the city and found refuge in Italy, bringing with them many ancient Greek writings that had been lost in the West. These helped contribute to the European Renaissance. Those Greeks who stayed behind were mostly confined to the [[Phanar]] and Galata districts. The Phanariots, as they were called, often provided capable advisors to the Ottoman sultans, but were just as often seen as traitors by other Greeks.
Down to the present day, many Greeks have considered Tuesday (the day of the week that Constantinople fell) to be the unluckiest day of the week.