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By Gabriel Piterberg

Within the area of six years early within the 17th century, the Ottoman Empire underwent such turmoil and trauma--the assassination of the younger ruler Osman II, the re-enthronement and next abdication of his mad uncle Mustafa I, for a start--that a pupil suggested the period's three-day-long dramatic climax "an Ottoman Tragedy." below Gabriel Piterberg's deft research, this era of difficulty turns into a old laboratory for the heritage of the Ottoman Empire within the 17th century--an chance to watch the dialectical play among heritage as an incidence and adventure and background as a recounting of that have. Piterberg reconstructs the Ottoman narration of this fraught interval from the foundational textual content, produced within the early 1620s, to the composition of the nation narrative on the finish of the 17th century. His paintings brings theories of historiography into discussion with the particular interpretation of Ottoman historic texts, and forces a rethinking of either Ottoman historiography and the Ottoman nation within the 17th century. A provocative reinterpretation of a huge occasion in Ottoman background, this paintings reconceives the relation among historiography and historical past.

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Extra resources for An Ottoman Tragedy: History and Historiography at Play (Studies on the History of Society and Culture)

Sample text

My impression is that the tumultuous and violent three days in mid-May Istanbul we are about to present witnessed the participation of at least thousands of kul, perhaps even more. Numbers could also vary according to particular activities: a gathering at the Hippodrome might be very large, whereas the submission of a petition to the sultan via the ulema was done by an elected delegation. Comments by the Ottoman historians that shops in the markets were closed and that the city halted its daily life suggest that the civilian people of Istanbul stayed away from the confrontational drama at least until the result was clear.

These are Kanuni Sultan Süleyman and his consort and then wife, Hurrem Sultan, at the beginning of the process and Kösem Sultan, haseki of Ahmed I and valide of Murad IV and Ibrahim I, at a crucial juncture. Rather than being the zenith of Ottoman civilization, as the traditional Orientalist narrative of a subsequent decline has framed it, Süleyman’s reign seems to have been, in certain respects, strewn with “irregularities,” among which the royal household seems to have figured prominently: for example, the unprecedented and never again repeated status of his beloved daughter Mihrimah.

His uncle, Mustafa I, was reinstalled at the Topkapı palace. 44 The Plot / 29 the conclusion of the haile-i osmaniye The trauma of the Haile-i Osmaniye did not subside during Sultan Mustafa’s second reign (May 1622 –September 1623). The instability and unrest were particularly severe in the eastern and central provinces of Anatolia and in the capital itself. The most marked event in the east (it assumes center stage in Chapter 8) was the rebellion of the beylerbeyi (governor) of Erzurum, Abaza Mehmed Pasha.

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