“Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.”

–Marcus Aurelius

The Blue Mosque, constructed by Sultan Ahmet, is famous for its unorthodox design. In contrast to typical structure of a mosque that has four minarets, it has six.

 

With yet another victory for Recep Erdogan in Turkey’s elections, some people have started calling him neo-ottoman. Many more believe that he wants to revive Ottoman Empire. Whether people’s apprehensions and analyses stand true or not, it would not harm anyone to go back to the past to know who laid the foundations of the Ottoman Empire.

The Ottoman dynasty gets it name from the first ruler of the Ottoman polity, Osman I. Traditional sources suggest that he descended from a Turkic tribe, “Kai” that migrated out of Central Asia owing to Mongol conquest. Osman’s father Ertugrul is believed to be one of the sons of Sulaiman Shah who parted his ways with his brothers and settled on the frontiers of Byzantine Empire. Beyond this, not many details are available for historians about the origins of Ottoman Empire.

The empire reached its zenith during the rule of Sulaiman the Magnificent who ruled from 1520 until his death in 1566. However, the seeds of decline were also sowed in his lifetime. Failing to resist theocracy, he made no attempts to modernise the empire according to the demands of the changing times. The empire lasted till early twentieth century. The Grand National Assembly of Turkey abolished the empire on 1 November 1922, which had endured since 1299.