Fall of the Ottoman Empire

Topics: Ottoman Empire, Empire, Ottoman Dynasty Pages: 8 (3036 words) Published: April 22, 2012
Adnan Khawaja
(Super Awesome Title)
The Ottoman empire; one of the greatest empires in history. The Empire, at its height, ruled most of the land around the Mediterranean. It contributed much to culture, science, religion, war, politics, and the world. Its monumental fall will be known throughout history. How can the swift decline of the Ottoman power be explained? Perhaps the best way to understand how important this event was, there needs to be a brief explanation of the history behind this epic collapse; showing the rise before the fall and the drastic change.

Like with many other empires in human history the Ottoman Empire seems to came out from nowhere. During the initial Ottoman expansion the Middle East and South Eastern Europe were an "old soil" exhausted of civilizational cultivation and barbaric wars. Greeks, Persians, Romans, and Arabs succeeded each other destroying and building great civilizations there as every new period of great achievements was preceded by intermediate periods of decline. The Ottomans, as many others before them, used the opportunity to expand.

The Turks, the future Ottomans, became leaders not only because of their extraordinary political and military organization, but because of the exhaustion of the older empires Byzantium and the Abbasids. Their influence was constantly growing and in the middle of the eleventh century they gradually formed a confederation in the region of modern Iran, called the Seljuk confederation. The Turkish military power and energy were enough strong to dominate from north-western Iran to the Arab lands. Ottomans built a fleet that was competing with Venice and the Portuguese, they conquered the Mediterranean Sea and the coasts of North Africa. In 1517, Sultan Selim subdued the Mamluks in Syria and Egypt, and the Ottoman Sultan was recognized as a supreme ruler of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. The character of the new empire was absolutist, militaristic, bureaucratic, agrarian, universal, and very pragmatic.

In their height of power, The Ottoman Empire was one of the most successful and prosperous empires in history. They were an organised and powerful force. The man who brought them into such great power was Mehmet I who helped expand The Ottomans from small city in Turkey into a mighty State. The Empire had conquered many great nations of the middle Eastern world as well as parts of Southern Europe and Egypt. It lasted for over 700 years under the rule of a single dynasty. The empire was culture was based around the muslim religion. They had conquered many nations of varying religions such as christians, and Egyptian religions. They would in some cases raise children from other cultures into their own religion. After defeating the Byzantine Empire they became the major power in Easter Mediterranean area. They conquered the great city is Constantinople and renamed the city as Istanbul. Istanbul then became the capital of their Empire. Their military was made up of converted christians and slaves well-trained for combat. The Ottomans achieved much in the expansion and development of their empire.

1)Why did the Ottoman Empire enter in a period of decline in 17th century? The most obvious reason is the fact that every expansion has an end, and every empire has a life span.The decline started when the expansion stopped. The expansion was in the character of the early Ottoman state, it was in the heart of Ottoman culture, and it was also the source of its energy. The early Turks had a frontier psyche. When the sultan retired at his palace in Istanbul, the Ottoman Empire changed its initial character; the Turks had to change their worldview.

2) While the ottomans were in power however, there became a steady decline with the inability to keep up with technology. The Industrial Revolution saw even greater changes. The Ottoman Empire did not have a social structure well adjusted to the free-market capitalism needed to build...
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