Ottoman Empire

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Ottoman Empire

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aug 5, 2008, 11:31 pm

I'd be interested in some reccomendations for books on the Ottoman Empire. My reading on the empire has been limited to events surrounding WWI, Roger Crowley's 1453 and Empires of the Sea, and a few other mentions in other works.

Whether it is a general history or more specific, I'd love to find out a little more on this subject.

aug 6, 2008, 3:16 am

You could try The Ottoman Centuries: The Rise and Fall of the Ottoman Empire, by Lord Kinross.

Two other books, which I do not own but get good reviews, might be worth a look. The Ottoman Empire and the World Around It, by Suraiya Faroqhi, and Between Two Worlds: The Construction of the Ottoman State, by Cemal Kafadar.

I tend to be interested in earlier history (medieval, Byzantine, Renaissance, etc.) so I enjoyed The Sultan's Seraglio: An Intimate Portrait of Life at the Ottoman Court, which is a memoir by Venetian official Ottaviano Bon of the time he spent at the court in Istanbul, 1604-1607. Obviously its scope is narrow, but if you enjoy that sort of thing, it is an interesting account.

In that same vein, the letters and descriptions of Ottoman life by 18th-century traveler Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, whose touchstone won't work for some reason, may also be of interest.

If you prefer pictures, perhaps Images of the Ottoman Empire, by Charles Newton, may help.

aug 6, 2008, 6:35 am

I also recommend books by Suraiya Faroqhi. Then there is Halil Inalcik's and Faroqhi's An economic and social history of the Ottoman empire, vols. I & II

And these I liked, the ones with an asterix very much:

Constantinople: City of the World's Desire, 1453-1924* by Philip Mansel
Under the Turk in Constantinople* by G.F. Abbott
The Imperial Harem* by Leslie P. Peirce
The Janissaries by Godfrey Goodwin
Izmir and the Levantine World by Daniel Goffman
Osman's Dream: The Story of the Ottoman Empire 1300-1923
by Caroline Finkel
The Ottoman Empire and Early Modern Europe by Daniel Goffman
The Rise of Oriental Travel* by Gerald MacLean