The study of Ottoman history has resulted in the construction of a number of Ottoman ’pasts’, some of which have been proved recoverable and essentially durable, while others have been seen to owe too much to extraneous preconceptions. In the articles collected here, Dr Heywood has questioned some of the perceived certainties in the field of Ottoman history and historiography, focusing in particular on the work of Paul Wittek and the idea of the 'frontier'. Other studies are based on the abundant surviving documentation, and look at specific topics in 17th-century Ottoman history and in Anglo-Ottoman relations, for example Sir Paul Rycaut’s view of the Ottoman empire, or the organisation of the Ottoman postal service and roads, and the cannon-foundry in Istanbul.
Table of Contents
Contents: Preface; The frontier in Ottoman history: old ideas and new myth; Bosnia under Ottoman rule, 1463-1800; English diplomatic relations with Turkey, 1689-1698; Sir Paul Rycaut, a 17th-century observer of the Ottoman state: notes for a study; 'Boundless dreams of the Levant': Paul Wittek, the George-Kreis, and the writing of Ottoman history; Wittek and the Austrian tradition; A subterranean history: Paul Wittek (1894-1978) and the early Ottoman state; Between historical myth and ’mythohistory’: the limits of Ottoman history; Some Turkish archival sources for the history of the Menzilhane network in Rumeli during the 18th century (Notes and documents on the Ottoman Ulak, I); The Ottoman Menzilhane and Ulak system in Rumeli in the 18th century; The Via Egnatia in the Ottoman period: the Menzilhanes of the Sol Kol in the late 17th/early 18th century; 'Yazici defter yazmak dilese...' (notes on the Miftahu'l-hisab-i kava'id-i defter by Dervish Bihisht Saruhani); An unsolved murder in the Marmara (notes on Bodl. MS. Turk. d. 32); A letter from Cerrah Mustafa Pasha, Vali of Tunis, to Sir William Trumbull (A.H. 1099/A.D. 1688); The activities of the state cannon-foundry (Tophane-i 'Amire) at Istanbul in the early 16th century according to an unpublished Turkish source; Notes on the production of 15th-century Ottoman cannon; Index.
'...the publication of a Variorum volume of a scholar's reprinted articles signifies that that scholar has attained an unassailably authoritative status. No Ottomanist would deny that Colin Heywood has achieved this status... We should be grateful to Ashgate for assembling such a rich collection, particularly given the relative obscurity of some of the original publication venues.' International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 'Heywood's essay on Ottoman Bosnia is a further example of his versatility and of the thoughtful and careful scholarship in both its conceptual and practical aspects which is exemplified in this Variorum collection. Moreover, unlike much Ottoman scholarship, Heywood's prose is always a pleasure to read.' BSOAS