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Ottoman Age Notables... Edmond Halley (1656 – 1742), English astronomer, geophysicist, mathematician, meteorologist, and physicist -- of Halley's Comet fame
Ottoman Age 'Comet Man'
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Encyclopedia of the Ottoman Empire
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Sultans and Concubines and Eunuchs, oh my...!

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Term Meaning Comments
ibn- Prefix used in Arabic that means 'son of'. It is used frequently as the first part of a person's name, such as ibn-Sina or Son of Sina (who was known in Europe as Avicenna). See also, Abd-, al-, bin, ben-, and Arabic Names. To find entries for Arabic-named persons beginning al- or ibn- see the second part of the name. For example to find the entry for the "Father of the Church of Islam" whose name was al-Ghazali, look under the letter 'G'. For Arabic names beginning Abd-, see the letter 'A'. For names beginning ben-, bin, bint, see the letter 'B'.
[also Ibrahim Pasha, Ibrahim Damat, Frenk Ibrahim]

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Rare likeness of Ibrahim...Edition 4.5
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Ibrahim was "short, swarthy, intelligent and well-read. He knew Persian, Greek, Serbo-Croat, and Italian -- and he played the lute. When he entered the household of Süleyman I, the young prince was captivated."19

Ibrahim could be charming. Once the Sultan asked him, "Whose celebration party was best, Ibrahim? The one I held for my son's circumcision or the one you held when you were married?" Ibrahim was quick with the "right" answer..."My party was best," he said, "because I had the Sultan as my guest!"

Or he could be a jealous adversary...
A European chronicler made note (in 1534) that Ibrahim discovered the Magnificent Süleyman getting advice from [the attractive] Rüstem Paşa (who would be Ibrahim's successor). Ibrahim became quite agitated and, in a flash, Rüstem found himself reassigned to duty in the remote province of Diyarbakır. Süleyman did not intervene.

Later, after Hafsa Hatun (Süleyman's mother and Ibrahim's powerful benefactor) died, Rüstem along with his wife, Mihramah (Süleyman and Hürrem's daughter), and Hürrem (Süleyman's wife) successfully plotted against Ibrahim. On the evening of April 5, 1536 after Ibrahim's return from two-years of victorious campaigning against the Safavids in Persia, Süleyman invited his old friend to dinner in the sultan's private quarters at TOPKAPI. They passed a pleasant evening together apparently, but it grew late so Ibrahim retired to the adjoining bedroom -- which the Sultan always kept ready for him. The next morning Ibrahim was found in the street outside the palace walls, strangled by bowstring. Gauging from the marks on his body he had put up a prodigious fight to the end...And as Will Durant has observed, "it was an act that matched the barbarism of the burning of Servetus or Berquin.[two Christian 'heretics' burned at the stake by 'orthodox' Christian authorities, in this same era.]"35

Ottoman Grand Vizier (1523-1536) to Süleyman I (The Magnificent). Probably of Greek or Croatian ancestry, Ibrahim entered Turkey via the devşirme system as a youthful Christian slave after an Ottoman raid -- perhaps near Parga, Italy16 in the time of Bayezid II. Süleyman and he quickly became very close friends -- too close in the eyes of many (Ali Kemal Meram suggests they were bisexual lovers.29) After Süleyman became Sultan (1520), Ibrahim began a meteoric rise. Within 3 years, he was Grand Vizier, beating out Piri Mehmed, the last of the Grand Vizier's to come from the old Turkish aristocracy. From this point, members of the 'devşirme' began increasingly to take control of the principal positions of state in the Ottoman Empire.

Ibrahim had a fatal flaw -- he lacked modesty (outside the presence of the Sultan). He was once quoted as saying, "Though I am the Sultan's slave, whatsoever I declare is done. I can at a stroke make a pasha out of a stable-boy. I can give kingdoms and provinces to whomsoever I choose and my lord will say nothing against it. Even if he has ordered a thing himself, if I do not want it, it is not done. And if I order a thing to be done and he has ordered to the contrary, what I wish and not what he wishes is done."19
This angered and challenged Hürrem, Süleyman's strong-willed wife, and she began plotting Ibrahim's downfall. And when she prevailed, it marked the beginning of the "Sultanate of Women".

Chronology of Events during his lifetime:
Ibrahim born of Christian parents in 1493? Süleyman born 1494. Ibrahim captured in Italy about 1500 by Bayezid II's Ottoman raiders. Selim I ascends to Ottoman throne (1512). Selim I defeats forces of the Persian Shah Ismail at ÇALDIRAN (23 August, 1514). Selim conquers the Mamluks at Aleppo, leaving their leader, al-Ghawri, dead of a stroke on the battlefield. Selim sweeps over Egypt defeating Tuman Bey in a battle near the pyramids, Syria and Egypt added to Ottoman Empire. As the new Caliph for all of Islam, Selim returns to İstanbul with Muslim relics from Medina and Mecca (1517). Selim dies painfully of cancer (21 September, 1520), Süleyman ascends (30 September, 1520). Süleyman conquers Belgrade (29 August, 1521); defeats and executes Janbardi Ghazaly in Syria (February). 1522 End of the Dulkadir dynasty; S. takes Rhodes (January 21). 1523 Ibrahim, aligned with Süleyman's powerful mother Hafsa Hatun, becomes Grand Vizier. The devşirme class begins rise over Turkish aristocracy. 1524 Ahmed Pasha revolts in Egypt (January). 1525 Ibrahim in Egypt to 'clean up' after local uprising against Arnavat Ahmet Pasha. Before leaving he implements a popular simplified tax system (24 April-14 June). 1526 Battle of Mohacs (29 August); Süleyman in Buda (10 September); John Zapolya becomes King of Hungary (10 November). 1527 Ferdinand of Austria in Buda. 1529 S. captures Buda (8 September); Zapolya crowned in Buda (14 September); S. besieges Vienna (26 September - 16 October). 1531 The Austrians besiege Buda (December). 1532 S. campaigns against Austria; captures Güns (28 August); Andrea Doria captures Coron (8 August). 1533 Peace with Ferdinand (22 June); Hayreddin Barbarossa becomes Grand Admiral; Barbarossa conquers Tunis (August); B. reconquers Coron (12 September); war with Iran (August). Ibrahim sent to Kurdish territory to mobilize army against the Shah Tahmasp I's Iranian Safavids (October). 1534 Hafsa Hatun, Süleyman's mother, dies (March 19; she had been Ibrahim's mentor/benefactor). 1534-1536 With Hafsa Hatun out of the way, Ibrahim's enemies begin to emerge -- Hürrem aligns with Iskender Celebi, Ibrahim's chief rival, and the French Ambassador. 1534-1536 Ibrahim aligns with Mahidevran (Gülbahar), mother of Mustafa, Süleyman's oldest son. 1534 Ibrahim enters Tabriz ahead of Süleyman, has locals address him as 'Sultan Ibrahim'. Süleyman hears of these events and is angered. (March) 1534 S. enters Tabriz (13 July); after joining forces, S. and I. head for Baghdad. Baghdad falls (November) 1535 Leaving Ibrahim behind, S. returns to Tabriz (spring); Charles V in Tunis (21 July). 1535 Ibrahim negotiates French Capitulations with his 'good friend' Francis I. 1536 S. returns to İstanbul (8 January); has Ibrahim executed (5 March) under pressure from Hürrem.
ibriktar usta Superintendent of the baths  

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An 18th C. içoğlan, from a contemporary engraving...74

A devşirme boy, selected as a Topkapı Palace page -- who also received formal education at the palace. 
iftar Break in the Ramazan (Ramadan) fast.  
İftariye Small bronze canopy facing the sea.  
ikbal The sultan's favorite female slave.  

An 18th century representation of the
Cevza [Ikizler] astrological symbol (in the Topkapi museum, İstanbul).69
The modern Turkish astrological sign -- equivalent to Gemini in English.
Also means 'twins' in modern Turkish...
See the Osmanlı (Ottoman) entry Cevza -- for illustration. See burçlar for complete list of Osmanlı (Ottoman), Modern Turkish, and English astrological signs.
imam Clerical man who directs the religious service at a mosque (see cami). The term holds particular importance for Shiite Muslims, whose powerful clerical and political leaders are called 'Imam'. To the Shiites the term is associated with the Twelve ('divinely' inspired historical) Imams, who they believe succeeded Mohammed. Sunnites don't share this belief with the Shiites. They view the present-day imam only as a good, important religious and spiritual guide, not as a 'powerful' political leader. And they don't believe in the succession of the Twelve 'divine' Imams.
Imam Nikahı

İmam Nikahı
Islamic marriage ceremony,
which is not official in Turkey

İmam Nikahı - Islamic marriage ceremony, which is not official in Turkey.
a marriage ceremony performed by an Islamic clericNot considered a government-sanctioned marriage ceremony in Turkey, but such marriages frequently occur...and, then sadly, they end... without any recourse on the part of the female.
Imperial Gate see Bab-i Hümayun  
[Pope] Innocent VIII Pope from 1484-1492, was the Pope who first brought Prince Cem to Rome (1486) as a glorified 'hostage of luxury' -- and helped the Christian world keep Bayezid II, Cem's brother the Sultan, at bay. In 1484, Innocent VIII issued the papal bull Summis Desiderantes -- which was a major impetus for the rising hysteria against witchcraft during the Italian Renaissance. Innocent VIII was a supporter of Tomas de Torquemada -- making him Grand Inquisitor for all Spain in 1487.
Innocent VIII succeeded (1484) Pope Sixtus IV and was succeeded by (1492) the notorious Pope Alexander VI, the father of Lucrezia (Lucretia) and Cesare Borgia.
Ferdinand I (of Naples) (1423-94), king of Naples (1458-94) was a constant thorn in Innocent VIII's side during 1484-1492. During Ferdinand's reign the printing press was introduced (1474) into Naples, and the Ottomans occupied (1480-81) Otranto. The invention of printing in the 15th century made pre-publication censorship possible. In 1487 Pope Innocent VIII introduced such censorship. Printers were required to submit all manuscripts to church authorities, and a work could be printed only after it had been approved. Also in 1487, Innocent VIII organized a crusade against the Waldenses Christian sect in Dauphiné and Savoy (both now part of France). 18
Interregnum Name given by historians to the 11 year period starting when Tamerlane defeated Sultan Bayezid I at the Battle of Ankara (1402) and ending when Mehmed I, the son of Bayezid I, re-gained absolute control of the Ottoman Empire (1413). Mehmed I ascended to the rejuvenated Ottoman throne, finally, after tragi-comical wars of succession among his contentious brothers (see right panel).
The 'Interregnum' was the only break in the more than 600 year history of the Ottoman Empire. The empire was finally disbanded in 1924 -- by Kemal Ataturk!
Chronology of Events during the Interregnum:
1402 Timur (Tamerlane) defeats Sultan Bayezid I at Battle of Ankara (28 July); T. takes Smyrna (Izmir) from the Hospitallers (December). 1403Bayezid I commits suicide at Akşehir (8 March); T. revives the Anatolian principalities; civil war among Bayezid's sons (brothers Süleyman Çelebi in Edirne, Isa in Bursa, Musa in Rumelia, and Mehmed in Amasya); agreements between Süleyman Çelebi and Christian states; Salonica returned to the Byzantines (October). 1405 Tamerlane returns home to Kazakstan, and dies. 1406 War between Mehmed and Süleyman Çelebi. 1410 Süleyman Çelebi defeats Musa in Rumelia (15 June and 11 July). 1411 Musa defeats Süleyman Çelebi (February) and besieges Constantinople (summer). 1412 Agreement between Mehmed and Manuel against Musa (July). 1413 Mehmed defeats Musa near Sofia (5 July); Mehmed I unifies Ottoman territories; the Karamanids besiege Bursa.
Meanwhile in Europe, The Hundred Years War Phase II (1396-1457) raged, and in the Byzantine Empire, Manual II ruled (1391 - 1425).
İ.Ö. See İsa'dan Önce...  
İ.S. See İsa'dan Sonra...  
ippetlu Literally 'She who has dignity', a title of respect for the sultan's mother.  
Irene, Church of Saint (Hagia Eirene) Church on the left after you pass through Sultan's Gate (Imperial Gate, Bab-i Hümayun) into the First Courtyard of the Palace. Was used as an Ottoman weapons and ammunition depot at times after the conquest of Constantinople.
Islam The world's youngest 'great' religion. Founded by the Prophet Muhammad. Islam dates its inception from the year of the Hegira, when Muhammad 'migrated' (under heavy pressure from opponents) to Medina from Mecca -- a migration that was completed on September 24, 622 (by the Gregorian calendar).
Islamic ritual prayer

Right click to 'View' slightly larger image...

The ritual -- part 1

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The ritual -- part 2

The prayer (dua) recited by devout muslims five times a day must be done while facing Mecca -- and includes ritual gestures and formulas which are repeated/chanted quietly by yourself or in groups [in mosques (see cami)]...  
İsmail, [Safavid] ShahSee Şah Ismail. 
İpanyol Engizisyon The Spanish Inquisition -- authorized by Pope Sixtus IV in 1478. The first Spanish inquisitors, operated out of Seville -- and they were so vicious that Sixtus IV attempted to intervene. But the Spanish crown was intoxicated by this new weapon over the masses and the pope's admonitions went unheeded. The very first Grand Inquisitor was the Dominican, Tomás de Torquemada, whose use of torture and confiscation to terrorize his victims was beyond belief. The number of burnings at the stake during his tenure has been exaggerated, but it was probably about 2,000. During this time, about 160,000 Spanish Jews fled the country for the safety of the Ottoman Empire -- where a succession of Ottoman Sultan's (most notably Beyazid II and Selim I) received them unreservedly. (Significant numbers of their Jewish ancestors still live in the area in and around Izmir, Turkey.) The Inquisition in Spain was suppressed by Joseph Bonaparte in 1808, restored by Ferdinand VII in 1814, suppressed in 1820, restored in 1823, and finally suppressed in 1834.119
[seen as İstanbul, in Turkish]Ed 3.51
The city formerly known first as Byzantium and, later, as Constantinople (beginning in 330 AD). It kept the 'official' name of Constantinople until 1930.
The city was founded in 667 by one Byzas of Megara50 along with a band of Greeks from Megara and Argos. It was destroyed during the reign of Darius Hystaspis (521-486 BC) but recolonized by Greeks from Sparta after 478 BC. It subsequently began its rise to fame as a trading port during the conflict between Athens and Sparta that we know as the Peloponnesian War (431-404 BC). In 330 BC, it was renamed Constantinople by the Roman Emperor, Constantine The Great -- and became the seat of the Eastern Roman Empire (better known as the Byzantine Empire).
Starting with Constantine The Great, Byzantine Emperors increasingly fortified the city. And for good reason -- because it was attacked many times. At one point in 1204, it was even captured and sacked by Christian Crusader's who were supposed to be headed for the Holy Land to 'rescue' Jerusalem from the Muslims. It was retaken by the Byzantines in 1263 but lost to Mehmed The Conqueror in 1453. And from that point until 1922 it served as the capital of Ottoman Turkey -- a period of nearly 500 years! The city's current name, İstanbul (which means 'to the city' in Greek), began to be used upon the fall of Constantinople in 1453.
İttifak DevletleriThe Central Powers in World War I.A coalition that consisted primarily of the German Empire and Austria-Hungary, the "central" European states that were at war from August 1914 against France and Britain on the Western Front and against Russia on the Eastern Front. The Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Central Powers on Oct. 29, 1914. Bulgaria came in on Oct. 14, 1915.66
İsa'dan Önce B.C. (Before Christ) -- used to distinguish between Christian and Islamic historical dates. See also M.Ö. and M.S. Compare with A.H.  
İsa'dan Sonra A.D.
lit., After the birth date of Christ (Anno Domini)... Used to distinguish between Christian and Islamic historical dates. See also M.Ö. and M.S. Compare with A.H.
[also seen as, Iznik]

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An Iznik plate from the early 16th Century.
Its diameter is about 16 inches. This picture is from a Spink and Son (London) display in 1985 -- when the asking price for the plate was £ 20,000...80

Iznik's early Ottoman history:
Paraphrased from Betsy Harrell48: The Ottoman period lasted in Iznik from 1331 until the end of WW I. In the fourteenth century the Byzantine Empire was weakening slowly and the Turks, who had been migrating from China to Anatolia for two hundred years now, were growing stronger. The second Ottoman Turkish Sultan, Orhan (son of Osman), first took nearby Bursa. Reportedly, Orhan delivered the news of this famous victory to his father on his death bed. Soon thereafter Izmit fell as did other Byzantine fortifications. Nicaea was next on the list. To capture it, Orhan used the same tactics that had worked well at Bursa. His men captured surrounding outposts, cut communications and food supplies, and bided their time with patience. Orhan and his son Süleyman besieged Nicaea for year, and captured it finally in 1331. In order to reassure the citizenry and to spur their industry, Orhan briefly transferred his residence and capital here from Bursa. He seems to have played a reasonable and generous role at the moment of conquest. It is told how with his own hands he distributed cooked foods to the city's poor. He also guaranteed his new subjects comfort and safety. Widows of the dead or deserted of the Byzantine army might, if they consented, marry, establish homes, and thereby help the Ottomans nail down their victory. Orhan generally allowed the citizens to keep their customs, religion and churches. However, the church, Hagia (Haghia) Sophia (not to be confused by the one with the same name in İstanbul), naturally became a mosque (see cami). Many new buildings were erected in this early period — so many that today the monuments of Iznik are excellent examples of the emerging Ottoman architecture. Orhan entrusted the command of Iznik to his son, Süleyman -- and invited the most learned and famous Turkish scholar, Davut of Kayseri, to move to Iznik and teach here. Also the conqueror appointed Candarli Kara Halil chief judge' and governor (kadı) of Iznik. This Kara Halil (Black Halil) was the founder of the famous Candarli line of prime ministers that served under many sultans for two hundred years. For a long time Kara Halil was in a position to encourage construction and otherwise advance the interests of his native town. His sons, grandsons and great-grandsons were also responsible for much of the remarkable building that took place here in the early days.
In 1402, Tamerlane's Mongol soldiers pillaged Iznik -- in an operation that cemented the suspension of the Ottoman dynasty (see Interregnum). And even when the city returned to the Ottoman fold, it wasn't long before she sank into obscurity. Because, after Fatih Mehmed conquered Constantinople in 1453, Iznik became a 'second-hand rose' -- the glitter of the new Ottoman capital was overpowering. Moreover, after Fatih executed Candarli Halil Pasha, Iznik floundered without its influential patronage.

A city in Northwest Anatolia, famous during Ottoman times (especially during the 16th Century) for its tile and pottery works. Iznik's original name was Antigonia (316 BC), but it was better known during Hellanistic, Roman, and Byzantine periods as Nicaea.
Alp Arslan, the Selçuk Turk renowned for his brave heart and long mustache, may have lived here the same year he crushed the Byzantine army at Manzikert (1071). Sadly, his long mustache (which was reportedly so long that he had to tie it up before going into battle) couldn't protect him from assassination a year after his famous victory. Because, when the dastardly Kwarazmian Chief, Yusuf, didn't like Alp Arslan's decision during a trial, he pulled a hidden dagger -- and stabbed our hero to death.

Note: There are conflicting reports about who actually changed Nicaea's name to Iznik. Some say it was Orhan when he conquered it in 1331.48 Other's say it was Süleyman The Magnificent who 'turkified' its name...23

Iznik jar from the early 16th Century.

Only the tiles produced between
1560 and 1620 have this distinctive tomato red color...

Iznik's later Ottoman History:
In the sixteenth century, Iznik's fame became widespread. After, Fatih's grandson Selim the Grim seized Tabriz in Persia in 1514, he found faience artisans of such skill that he packed them off west to Bursa and Iznik. They were some five hundred Persian potters with wives and children. They fired up their kilns in western Turkey and plied their trade for the adornment of palaces, mosques (see cami) and tombs.
During the next hundred years and more, these artists made tiles, plates, mosque lamps and other objects of incomparable beauty, Iznik tiles of the sixteenth century were the best that the Ottoman Empire ever produced and were the envy of Europe. In 1575 three hundred and fifty kilns were manufacturing tiles for Sinan the Architect's myriad projects. Famous still are these tiles with their sapphire blues, tomato reds, emerald greens, sparkling whites and subtle shades of hyacinth, lilac and turquoise, each color perfectly separated from the next, and all under a clear glaze -— these tiles with their graceful flower designs of tulip, carnation, rose, peony, hyacinth, pomegranate, plum, cherry and water-lily.
But in 1580, the Persian artisans (whose loyalty was in question) were deported to Rhodes. And when the Turks they had trained died off, the secret of the tile making process (and especially the secret of the 'tomato red' color mixture) was lost.
After the time of Sultan Ahmet I, who tiled his imperial mosque in blue, faience quality declined speedily. Runny blues and greens and dirty whites dominated seventeenth-century tiles -- and the world-renowned Iznik ceramics industry sank from view during the eighteenth century.48
ixaretteEd. 4.5 The name of a 'sign language' that was introduced at Topkapı Palace in the 1520s by two deaf mute Bostancı brothers, during the reign of Süleyman The Magnificent. Süleyman encouraged its use (because he thought it enhanced his dignity) and it became the unofficial language of the Sultan and his close associates (especially within the walls of the 3rd and 4th courts at Topkapı).95 The use of 'ixarette' continued on into the 17th Century at Topkapı, but it had a suffocating effect on Süleyman's heir's -- one of whom never learned to speak in public with confidence. And in 1617 when the pitiful (and certifiably mad) Sultan Mustafa I refused to learn it, it started a ripple that ended in his 'abdication' after only 3 months on the throne.

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