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The Ottoman Empire 1700–1922 pdf download

THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE 1700–1922
📘 Book Title The Ottoman Empire
👤 Book AuthorDONALD QUATAERT
🖨️ Total Pages238
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🌐 LanguageEnglish
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The Ottoman Empire 1700–1922 Second Edition by DONALD QUATAERT – Binghamton University, State University of New York

THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

Why study Ottoman history?

Introduction

This book owes its origins to an event that occurred in Vienna in the summer of 1983 when lines of schoolchildren wound their way through the sidewalks of the Austrian capital.

The attraction they were lining up for was not a Disney movie or a theme park, but instead, a museum exhibition, one of many celebrations held that year to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the second Ottoman siege of Vienna.

In the minds of these children, their teachers, and the Austrian (and, for that matter, the general European) public, 1683 was a year in which they all were saved “ from conquest by the alien Ottoman state, the unspeakable Turk.

The Ottoman state had emerged, c. 1300, in western Asia Minor, not far from the modern city of Istanbul. In a steady process of territorial accretion, this state had expanded both west and east, defeating Byzantine, Serb, and Bulgarian kingdoms as well as Turkish nomadic principalities in Anatolia (Asia Minor) and the Mamluk sultanate based in Egypt.

By the seventeenth century, it held vast lands in West Asia, North Africa, and southeast Europe. In 1529 and again in 1683, Ottoman armies pressed to conquer Habsburg Vienna.

The artifacts in the Vienna museum exhibit told much about the nature of the 1683 events. For example, the display of the captured tent and personal effects of the Ottoman grand vizier illustrated the panicky flight of the Ottoman forces from their camps that, just days before, had encircled Vienna.

The timely arrival of the central and east European allies, notably King John ( Jan) Sobieski of Poland, had put the encircling Ottoman armies to flight and turned the second Ottoman effort to seize the city into a full-blown disaster. For hundreds of years, the Ottoman forces had been pressing northward, ever deeper into the Balkan peninsula and closer to Vienna and the German-speaking lands.

These Ottomans literally were the terror of their enemies, seemingly invincible. Viennese mothers put their children to bed warning them to behave lest the “Turks” come and gobble them up.

This world changed in 1683. Somewhat to the surprise of both sets of protagonists, the Ottoman forces besieging Vienna were catastrophically defeated, an event that marked the permanent reversal of power relations between the Ottoman and the Habsburg empires.

By “Turks,” these frightened mothers meant a more complex reality –the fighting forces, who may or may not have been ethnically Turkish, of the multi-ethnic, multi-religious Ottoman empire.

Thus, a word here about the terms “Turks” and “Ottomans” seems in order. West, central, and east Europeans referred to the “Turkish Empire” and to the “Turks” when discussing the state led by the Ottoman dynasty. This was as true in the fourteenth as in the twentieth century. The appellation “Turk” has some basis since the Ottoman family was ethnically Turkish in its origins, as were some of its supporters and subjects.

But, as we shall see, the dynasty immediately lost this “Turkish” quality through intermarriage with many different ethnicities. As for a “Turkish empire,” state power relied on a similarly heterogeneous mix of peoples.

The Ottoman Empire succeeded because it incorporated the energies of the vastly varied peoples it encountered, quickly transcending its roots in the Turkish nomadic migrations from central Asia into the Middle East (see chapter 2).

Whatever ethnic meaning the word “Turk” may have held soon was lost and the term came to mean “Muslim.” To turn Turk meant converting to Islam.

Throughout this work, the term Ottoman is preferred since it conjures up more accurate images of a multi-ethnic, multi-religious enterprise that relied on inclusion for its success.

In hindsight, we can see that after 1683 the Ottomans never again threatened central Europe.

They did, however, stay in occupation of southeast Europe for 200 more years, dominating the modern-day states of Bulgaria, Serbia, Greece, Rumania, and others. Finally, in the hardly unbiased words of the British politician, Gladstone, they were driven “bag and baggage” from their possessions.

In its Asian and African provinces, the Ottoman Empire persisted even longer. Most parts of modern-day Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia remained part of the empire until World War I.

During the last decades before it disappeared in 1922, the Ottoman Empire existed without the European provinces that for centuries had been its heart and soul. In its last days, but only then, it fairly could be called an Asiatic, Middle Eastern power.

Until the 1878 Treaty of Berlin stripped away all but fragments of its Balkan holdings, the Ottoman Empire was a European power and was seen as such by its contemporaries, being deeply involved in Euro-pean military and political affairs. Throughout nearly all of its 600-year history, the Ottoman state was as much a part of the European political order as were its French or Habsburg rivals.

Ottoman history in world history

The Ottoman Empire was one of the greatest, most extensive, and longest-lasting empires in the history of the world. It included most of the territories of the eastern Roman Empire and held portions of the northern Balkans and the north Black Sea coast, areas that Byzantium had never ruled.

Nor were these holdings ephemeral – the Ottoman Empire was born before 1300 and endured until after World War I. Thus, it began in the same century the powerful Sung state in China ended, in the era when Genghis Khan swept across the Euro-Asiatic world and built an empire from China to Poland while, in Europe, France and England were about to embark on their Hundred Years War.

In west Africa, the great Benin state was emerging while, in the Americas, the Aztec state in the valley of Mexico began its expansion, both events being nearly contemporaneous with the Ottomans’ emergence in Asia Minor.

Born in medieval times, this empire of the Ottomans disappeared only very recently, within the memory of many people still living today. My own father was nine years old and my mother was five years old when the Ottoman Empire finally disappeared from the face of the earth. Large numbers of present-day citizens of the Ottoman successor states – such as Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq – bear Ottoman personal names given to them by their parents and were educated and grew up in an Ottoman world.

Thus, for many, this empire is a living legacy (see chapter 10).

In the sixteenth century, the Ottoman Empire shared the world stage with a cluster of other powerful and wealthy states.

To their far west lay distant Elizabethan England, Habsburg Spain, and the Holy Roman Empire as well as Valois France and the Dutch Republic.

More closely at hand and of greater significance to the Ottomans in the short run, the city-states of Venice and Genoa exerted enormous political and economic power, thanks to their far-flung fleets and commercial networks linking India, the Middle East, the Mediterranean, and west European worlds.

To the east were two great empires, then at their peak of power and wealth: the Safavid state based in Iran and the Moghul Empire in the Indian subcontinent.

The Ottoman, Safavid, and Moghul empires reached from Vienna in the west to the borders of China in the east and, in the sixteenth century, all prospered under careful administrators, enriched by the trade between Asia and Europe.

 The three together likely held the balance of economic and political global power, at the very moment when Spain and Portugal were conquering the New World and its treasure. But China,

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