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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 said the period's three-day-long dramatic climax "an Ottoman Tragedy." less than Gabriel Piterberg's deft research, this era of obstacle turns into a historic laboratory for the background of the Ottoman Empire within the 17th century--an chance to monitor the dialectical play among heritage as an prevalence and event and historical past 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 country narrative on the finish of the 17th century. His paintings brings theories of historiography into discussion with the particular interpretation of Ottoman ancient texts, and forces a rethinking of either Ottoman historiography and the Ottoman nation within the 17th century. A provocative reinterpretation of an incredible occasion in Ottoman historical past, this paintings reconceives the relation among historiography and heritage.

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Extra info for An Ottoman Tragedy: History and Historiography at Play

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During the fifteenth century], there were many different layers of oral and written historical traditions. 8 To render this line of argument, which is central to my own approach and method, more concrete, it is useful to dwell for a while on two prominent historians of the fifteenth century, As¸ık Pas¸azade (I shall use the shorthand Apz henceforth) 9 and Nes¸ri, especially the former. The keen insights of Victor L. 10 Concerning Apz in particular, Menage’s work has pointed to the possibility, fully developed by Kafadar, that Apz was a child of the gazi-dervish milieu and that his history, far from being another construction in the state narrative, articulated the historical consciousness and ethos of a social world with which Apz identified.

However, between the adventure with Mehmed I in the early 1410s and another with a member of one of the most illustrious gazi families, Mihalog˘lu Mehmed Bey, a decade later, Apz fell ill. He chose to recover and spend some time with an old man, Yahs¸i Fakih, the son of the imam of Orhan Gazi (r. 1324 – 62). It was at the home of Yahs¸i Fakih that Apz became acquainted with the menakib (gaza tales) that the old man had collected and written down. Kafadar rightly observes that, apart from Apz’s illness, nothing was accidental: There is every reason to assume [that] Apz felt comfortable in the sociocultural milieu he was born into.

At the latter site they drew up a petition, demanding that the padishah relinquish “crossing over to Anatolia,” and punish those who in the kul’s view had led him astray. The latter demand was sanctioned by yet another fetva, a copy of which the kul obtained. The city came to a halt. Meanwhile the ulema were summoned to the sultan and submitted the petition of the kul. Osman gave his consent to abandoning the passage to Anatolia but would not hear of punishing, even removing, his hoca and the chief black eunuch.

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