Don Juan Archiv - Wien, Forschungsverlag
Illustration depicting the audience of Hacı Hüseyin Efendi and his retinue by Carlo di Borbone, King of Naples and the Two Sicilies (r. 1734-1759) at the Palazzo Reale di Napoli. From: Sesoni, Francesco et al.: Relazione della venuta di Hagi Hussein Effendi inviato straordinario della Porta Ottomana, e della publica Udienza, che ha avuto dal Re nostros ignore Il giorno 18. Settembre 1741. Naples: Per Francesco Ricciardo, 1741. Kungliga Biblioteket - National Library of Sweden, Shelf number: RAR:161 G 2 g 1741.



Culture of Politics or Cultural Politics: Ambassadors as Cultural Actors in the Ottoman-European Relations 

On the Occasion of the 265th Anniversary of Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s (ca. 1680-1760) Vienna Mission (1748) "In their state they even have entertainments namely, ‘opera’ and ‘komadiye’, and ornamented playhouses with four to five floors."


International Symposium in One Act
Organized by
Don Juan Archiv Wien

Forschungsverein für Theater- und Kulturgeschichte


In cooperation with

Pera Museum Istanbul,
The UNESCO International Theatre Institute in Vienna
The Austrian Cultural Forum in Istanbul

Istanbul 2013


Dates: June 13-14, 2013
Venue: Pera Museum, Meşrutiyet Cad. 65, TR-34443 Tepebaşı-Beyoğlu



Conference Convenors:

Michael Hüttler, Matthias J. Pernerstorfer, Suna Suner, H. E. Weidinger

Call for Papers



Thursday, June 13th, 2013

10:00-11:00 Opening Ceremony

M. Özalp Birol (General Manager, Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation Culture and Art Enterprises)

Message of Helga Dostal (UNESCO ITI Vienna)

Michael Hüttler (Don Juan Archiv Wien)

Exc. Klaus Wölfer (Ambassador of the Republic of Austria in Ankara)

Message of Exc. Ayşe Sezgin (Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey in Vienna)

Paul Jenewein (Consul General of the Republic of Austria)

Message of Cemal Öztaş (Grand National Assembly of Turkey)

Günsel Renda (Koç University)

İlber Ortaylı (Galatasaray University)

Suna Suner (Don Juan Archiv Wien)


11:00-11:30 Coffee Break


11:30-12:45 Session I “The Two Empires I”

Holy Roman Empire – Ottoman Empire

Kostantiniyye (1556-1562, 1700) & Vienna (1699)

Chair: Zeynep İnankur (Istanbul - Mimar Sinan University)

1. Mikael Bøgh Rasmussen (Copenhagen – The Danish National Art Library)

Recognition and appropriation. Descriptions of the Ottoman Empire in text and image by two members of the imperial embassy of 1556–1562

The descriptions and images of two members of the imperial embassy to Kostantiniyye in 1556, the humanist diplomat, Ogier Ghislain de Busbecq (1522–1592; residency 1556–1562), and the artist, Melchior Lorck (1526/27–1583; residency 1555–1559), are considered among the best and most thorough sources about the Ottoman Empire available to a sixteenth century European audience.

This paper will try to assess these descriptions from the perspective of questioning whether or not the very reason for their sojourn in Kostantiniyye, and the circumstances that characterized it, could have had an impact on how we should read, regard, and understand them. What is particularly salient in the letters of Busbecq is the constant references to and mirroring of ancient Greek and Roman texts in the descriptions of both the topography and people. One could read his experience as one of rediscovery and recognition, and thus affirming that what he describes is really the remains of a culture that is his own heritage. The interpretation of such a perception might point in two directions: The recognition could be read as an affirmation of a common heritage of Turks and Europeans, or a recognition of the Turks as co-heirs to the classical Greek and Roman civilization, and thus an optimistic view of a likeness and common ground between the two Empires, the Ottoman and the Holy Roman. On the other hand, his recognition could also be seen as a symbolic re-appropriation of the lands under Ottoman rule into a heritage that is ̒really his’, i. e. an underlying statement about the Turks as usurpers of an area rightfully belonging to the ideal heir of the Roman Empire, who in Busbecq’s view was, of course, the Holy Roman Empire, represented by the Emperor.

The bias of Lorck appears different, as to a very large extent he does not pay as much attention to tradition as he does to the Ottoman society and monuments of his own day. Thus, the cultural bonding inherent in description, which these texts and images exemplify, may turn out to be a rather more complex phenomenon than a clear-cut admiration or disdain.


2. Ralf Martin Jäger (Münster – Westfälische Wilhelms Universität)

Places for the intercultural exchange of music? The embassies of İbrahim Paşa to Vienna and Graf Wolfgang von Oettingen to Kostantiniyye in 1699 and 1700

The embassies that were sent from Kostantiniyye to Paris and Vienna as well as those that went from European capitals to the court of the Sultan played a dominant role in imparting knowledge, among other things, about the foreign music culture. Records about German embassies in Kostantiniyye dating from the late sixteenth until the end of the eightteenth century reveal that the ambassadors had different types of music ensembles at their disposal, covering the realms of church music, representative state music, military music and chamber music. The structure of the ensembles as well as the number of musicians underwent substantial changes in the period under discussion, which prove to be dependent on the development of the political circumstances.

Of special interest are the first legations to be exchanged between the Ottoman and the Holy Roman Empires after the the second Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683, which were the embassies of İbrahim Paşa (dates unknown) to Vienna and Wolfgang von Oettingen (1626–1708) to Kostantiniyye in 1699.

So, it seems that in 1699 Graf Wolfgang von Oettingen was the first ambassador to receive official permission to have his representative music played while he marched through the city of Kostantiniyye, a permission that was in force exclusively for legations from Vienna until the end of the age of Grand-Embassies (germ. “Groß-Botschaft” is a fixed term in German history writing, which describes an extraordinary representative legation led by a high ranking dignitary and differentiates it from a ‘normal’ legation) in 1742, when the legations became much smaller and no longer possessed music ensembles. Altogether Wolfgang von Oettingen had taken no less than eight chamber musicians, six infantry musicians, eight trumpet players and one timpanist, as well as an unknown number of musicians playing lutes, harps, violas da gamba, galizons, violins, violas and one organ with him to the Ottoman capital. The ensembles not only played regularly at the Ambassador’s court, but were also invited to perform by high government officials such as the Grand Vizier.

İbrahim Paşa, the ambassador of Sultan Mustafa II (r. 1695–1703), took a mehterhâne of thirty musicians to Vienna in 1699. The documents at hand reveal that in Vienna public performances of the mehterhâne were given regularly in the period between 1700 and 1742. While those concerts normally took place near the accommodation of the Ambassador in Vienna, the mehterhâne also played at public banquets that the ambassador held in the Prater or at the celebration of kurban bayramı outside his residence It is even more significant that an additional ince sâz-ensemble is mentioned in archival records for the first time, and the names of the Turkish musicians are actually given. Therefore, a reconstruction of musical life at the Ottoman Ambassador’s residence and of the specific ensemble structures is possible.


12:45–14:15 Lunch Break


14:15–15:45 Session II “The Two Empires II”

Holy Roman Empire / Austrian Empire – Ottoman Empire

Vienna (1748, 1833–1838, 1894)

Chair: Seyfi Kenan (Istanbul – Marmara University)

1. Evelyn Denham (Cambridge – Cambridge University)

Permanent neighbors, exceptional friends: Diplomatic ceremony during Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s mission to Vienna in 1748

The years following the Treaty of Karlowitz saw a marked increase in diplomatic contact between the Ottoman Empire and various European courts. This paper looks at one such diplomatic mission, Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s embassy to Vienna in 1748, in order to explore the expectations of the Habsburgs regarding their relationship with the Ottoman Empire and to reflect on the role played by diplomatic ceremony during the eighteenth century.

Diplomatic ceremony was long regarded by historians to be of secondary importance to the political landscape it merely represented. Those who did address diplomatic ceremony tended to either offer detailed descriptions without interpretation, describing ceremony’s utilitarian functions, or to regard it as a hindrance to effective diplomatic efforts. However, in recent years there has been a growing awareness of the importance of ceremony in the politics of the early modern world, but little consensus has been reached regarding the role that diplomatic ceremony played in this world. Phrases such as “the symbolic and public representation of power” suggest the importance of ceremony, but they reiterate more than they explain.

This paper seeks to work out the logic of one particular set of diplomatic ceremonies, Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s mission to Vienna, using the records left by the Habsburg monarchs, diplomats, and court officials at the Haus- Hof- und Staatsarchiv in Vienna. I first seek to reconstruct what happened, and then ask why ceremonies were considered necessary, what they accomplished, and how diplomatic ceremony in particular furthered the goals of both parties involved. I focus on the role played by processions and audiences, using schematic diagrams of the ceremonial audiences, pamphlet descriptions of processions, and records of negotiations between Mustafa Hatti Efendi, the Habsburg translators and diplomats, and their reports to their monarchs. What constituted success or failure for a diplomatic ceremony? Who was the intended audience? How was the ceremony’s purpose communicated?

The Habsburg translators and court officials whose records this paper draws upon dedicated much of their time to deciphering the identity, intentions, and worldview of their Ottoman guests. By focusing precisely on a diplomatic encounter where communication and convention were not assured, I hope to follow the logic of these Habsburg court officials in order to discover how diplomatic ceremony fitted into their world. I argue that these processions and audiences were far more flexible than usually assumed and played a central role in the political culture of the early modern world. Rather than enacting or reinforcing existing relationships, these ceremonies in fact provided the stability and permanence to forge new ones, in this case a tentative peace between the Habsburgs and the Ottoman Empire. By focusing on diplomatic ceremony I hope to open up the enclosed world of the court and shed light on how Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s role as ambassador would have been perceived by his Habsburg contemporaries.


2. Zeynep İnankur (Istanbul – Mimar Sinan University)

Fethi Ahmed Pasha (1801–1858) and his role as a cultural intermediary (1833–1838)

Fethi Ahmed Pasha, born in Kostantiniyye in 1801, was educated at the Enderun school. After serving in several positions in the army, he was sent to Vienna in 1834 as one of the first permanently appointed ambassadors of the Ottoman Empire. In 1838 he was transferred to Paris. In both of these posts, he attracted attention with his amiability, his fine manners as well as his intelligence. He educated himself in European customs and modes, took lessons in politics and etiquette, spent huge amounts of money decorating the embassy and hosting banquets. He returned to Kostantiniyye in 1839 and married Princess Atiye (1824–1850), the daughter of the deceased Sultan Mahmud II (r. 1808–1839) and the sister of the then current Sultan Abdülmecid (r. 1839–1861). He became the Sultan’s most intimate confidant and was appointed Grand Master of Artillery in 1845. His taste for fine arts and music, evolved during his residence in Vienna, continued in Kostantiniyye. His seaside mansion at Kuzguncuk on the Bosphorus evoked so much admiration that Sultan Abdülmecid assigned him to the task of the decoration of the newly built Dolmabahçe Palace. Fethi Ahmed Pasha was an ardent theatregoer, accompanied the sultan to theatre and opera performances in Pera. He was a very close friend of Giuseppe Donizetti (1788–1856), the Instructor General of the Imperial Ottoman Music and a patron of several European artists working in Kostantiniyye. He founded the first Turkish museum at the church of Saint Irene, and then a military depot and a glass factory in Beykoz.

Died in 1858, Fethi Ahmed Pasha, a true representative of the Westernization process of the Tanzimat Period, deserves further investigation with his multifaceted personality.


3. Tatjana Marković (Belgrade/Vienna –Austrian Academy of Sciences)

Opera as a diplomatic gift to Montenegrin Prince Nikola Petrović Njegoš I (1894)

In 1894, the Italian diplomat and composer Dionisio de Sarno San-Giorgio (1856–1937), wrote the opera Balkanska carica (‘Balkan Empress’) as his political dedication to Nikola Petrović Njegoš I, the prince (1860–1910) and afterwards the first king (1910–1918) of Montenegro: there, de Sarno San-Giorgio was ambassador, and the drama with the same name written by the prince himself (1883) served as basis for the libretto, prepared by the composer himself. As the ambassador pointed out in the introduction of the printed piano score of his opera; “The most beautiful award for my work would be if I am lucky to receive His Excellency Prince Nikola I’s graceful acceptation and respect for it. I am proud for his highest permission to write my name at the end of this modest work.” Except for some numbers, the opera has not been performed until 2008.

The political aim of Nikola Petrović Njegoš I was to restore the medieval Serbian Empire and to liberate it from the Ottomans, referring in his drama to the core signifier of Serbian national identity, the Kosovo Battle (1389). Montenegro as Serbian Sparta had an image of a small and proud heroic country, which succeeded to keep its own autonomy even during the Ottoman rule. For the mentioned reasons the playwright chose an episode from the fifteenth century history of Montenegro or the then Principality of Zeta under the rule of Ivan Crnojević (r. 1465–1490). This family is famous not only because of their military successes against the Ottoman army and their diplomatic relations with the Republic of Venice, but also because they established the first printing office in Southeast Europe in Cetinje in 1493.

The drama and the opera libretto did not precisely follow the known historical facts, but used a general historical background as the context of a love story. The Ottomans are referred to as the enemies and the Islamic threat to the Christianity. The younger son of Ivan Crnojević, Stanko Crnojević, due to the impossibility to come to the throne and marry his beloved Danica, accepts the Ottoman offer to fight with them against his own people in exchange for a future position of the Balkan emperor. Being unable to accept Stanko’s invitation to go with him and to become the Balkan empress, Danica commits suicide. The opera ends with a celebration of the victory over the Ottoman army, the liberated Montenegro, but also with the punishment of Stanko the national traitor, and the celebration of Danica as an example of Montenegrin women’s patriotism.

The paper will consider the opera as a diplomatic present to the ruler of Montenegro, based on the main signifiers of Montenegrin/Serbian national identity’s grand narrative.


15:45–16:00 Coffee Break


16:00–18:00 Session III “In the South of Europe – The Historic Italian States”

Republic of Venice – Venice (1571)
Grand Duchy of Tuscany – Egypt (1681) and Kostantinniye (1703–1717)
Kingdom of the Two Sicilies – Messina & Naples (1741–1742)

Chair: Nedret Kuran Burçoğlu (Istanbul – Yeditepe University)

1. Stefan Hanß (Berlin – Freie Universität)

“The Catholic ambassador will sing the Mass”. Ambassadorial service and Venetian festivities after the Battle of Lepanto (1571)

Many studies have been published on the cultural impact of the diplomatic relationships between Venice and the Ottoman Empire: artistic and architectural entanglements are examined as well as the political status, economic role and symbolical functions of Venetian baili in Constantinople and Ottoman envoys to the Lagoon City. By contrast, the cultural impact of foreign ambassadors on the Veneto-Ottoman world is surprisingly little investigated yet it would widen a bilateral perspective into a multi-layered mosaic of early modern Christian-Muslim contacts containing several tesserae of various symbolical and political duties of foreign ambassadors in Venice.

In examining this constellation, I will focus on the role of foreign ambassadors, such as Spanish, Roman and French diplomats, in the festivities which took place in Venice after the news of the victory of Lepanto (7 October 1571) arrived. The first avvisi and relazioni from the battle’s victorious outcome reached the ̒Lagoon City’ on 19 October, twelve days after the Spanish, Venetian and Papal ̒Holy League’ armada won against the Ottoman fleet. Several festivities were celebrated in Venice throughout the following days: Venetians came together at the Piazza di San Marco and held spontaneous celebrations; the German and Tuscan merchants as well as the guilds of goldsmiths, jewellers and silk traders organised festivities in the quarter of Rialto which lasted several days and nights; in addition, the Signoria gave ceremonies and processions near the Palazzo Ducale. The first days and the next two Sundays following the arrival of the news, Masses were said in St. Mark’s Basilica. Interestingly, Don Diego Guzmán de Silva (ca 1520–1577), at the time Spanish ambassador in Venice, was asked by Venetian officials to sing the Holy Mass in the central Venetian church of St. Mark for commemorating the Battle of Lepanto and thanking God for his heavenly intervention.

In my paper, I will focus on the background, reasons and the reception of this highly symbolical role in the context of Christian-Muslim contacts. Why was the Spanish ambassador asked for this by the Signoria? Why did the Venetian officials prefer him to sing the Mass rather than the Papal nuncio (then Giovanni Antonio Facchinetti) or the Doge (then Alvise I Mocenigo) himself? How did Guzmán de Silva judge his religious and diplomatic service after the festivities had taken place? And how has this been received by other foreign ambassadors from Rome, Vienna or Paris? To what extent did these ceremonies follow earlier processions organized after the conclusion of the “Holy League”? This paper is based on contemporary archival and printed evidence, including previously unknown letters written by the Spanish ambassador himself.

In summary, I will focus on the diplomatic, symbolical, religious and festive, thus, cultural and political role, of foreign ambassadors in Venice within the context of Veneto-Ottoman relations.


2. Davide Baldi (Florence)

The Florentine Alessandro Pini (1653–1717): from scientist and spy to be hypnotized by Turkey

In 1681 Doctor Alessandro Pini (Firenze 1653–1717 Kostantiniyye) was sent by Cosimo III Grand Duke of Tuscany (r. 1670–1723) to Egypt. He disembarked in Alexandria and primarily had the task of making discoveries, but also some other commissions which could be summarized as ‘secret diplomacy’: he had to bring Domenico Cartieri, head of the Pages of Egypt’s Great Pasha to Florence.

When Pini came to Cairo, he was received by the Grand Visir Chiuperlì and he cured him for a thrombosis in the leg. He also observed the customs and everything around him, copied documents and noted as much as possible about, for example, monuments, antiquities, scientific observations; he made exact drawings, collected Arabic manuscripts about mathematics and medicine. He then sent all this material to Italy on a Greek ship that unfortunately sank.

In 1683 Pini returned to Tuscany, to the Grand Duke’s disappointment he had not been successful in bringing Cartieri to Italy. Pini left for Venice where he met Cartieri again, who had fled from the Turks with whom he worked in Egypt, when they attempted the siege of Vienna. Pini, glad to hear of Cartieri’s good fortune, did not want to return to Florence with the latter, being offended by and disappointed with the rumors about himself. After numerous requests to the Grand Duke Pini was allowed to be engaged (in 1684) on a Venetian ship as a doctor. Held this position; from 1699 to 1703 he lived in Venice working for the Serenissima. In 1703 the Bailo of Kostantiniyye, Giulio Giustinian (1640–1715), called him to follow him as a doctor in Turkey. There, Pini married an Italian lady (Elena Masselini, and took up residence in the district of Pera. He lived there until 1715 and then went to Nafplio (Greece) where he was enslaved. He eventually died in 1717 in the prison of Kostantiniyye. During his stay in Kostantiniyye he had the opportunity to study and described several aspects of life on the Bosphorus.

Pini left a description, written in Latin, of the world that fascinated him: De moribus Turcarum (‘On the Customs of the Turks’) (written probably during his stay in Kostantiniyye and Nafplio). He says: “the customs of the Turks were observed by me in such a way that they could be described as an example, because not everyone is allowed to travel in those regions. It was easy for me to penetrate their secret places, since I was not driven by injury, benefit, hate, or by any other feeling, but I was particularly attentive to the common advantage of men, of humankind.” Pini describes various aspects of social life such as education of children, the separation between men and women, the condemnation of idleness, the great generosity towards the poor, and the numerous rules of behaviour and eating habits. He also provides an aesthetic and architectural description of Kostantiniyye with information useful for reconstructing the appearance of the city at that time.

His treatise presents an enthusiasm for the Turkish society and customs Pini became acquainted with during his stay; as doctor in Egypt (1680–1683) and later on in Turkey (Pera of Constantinople, 1703–1715) as spouse, and in Greece (Nafplio, 1715–1717) as slave–he consciously decided to apologetically describe a world that the West saw as its negative ‘alter ego’.

When Alessandro’s son, Antonio Pini, went from Kostantiniyye to Florence in 1740, he took his father’s treatise with him. In Florence, he gave the manuscript to Antonio Cocchi (1695–1758), a well-known erudite doctor and bibliophile: Cocchi’s library today is incorporated in the Fondo Magliabechiano of the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze. There, Alessandro Pini’s manuscript was rediscovered recently by the author of the present abstract.


3. Suna Suner (Vienna – Don Juan Archiv Wien)

The First Ottoman Envoy to Naples (1741): Hacı Hüseyin Efendi and the Messina Issue

The first „Trattato di pace, navigazione e commercio“ (̒Treaty of Peace, Navigation and Trade’), concluded on 7 April 1740 between the Ottoman Empire and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, was negotiated by the Neapolitan envoy to the Sublime Porte, Cavaliere Giuseppe Finocchietti di Faulon (ca 1702–1782), minister plenipotentiary of the King Carlo di Borbone (r. 1734–1759). Subsequently, Hacı Hüseyin Efendi (dates unknown) was sent in 1741 as extraordinary envoy of Sultan Mahmud I (r. 1730–1754) to the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, with the mission of delivering diplomatic gifts in return to the mission of Finocchietti di Faulon. Hacı Hüseyin Efendi arrived in Messina on 7 July 1741 and sojourned there until he departed for Naples on 31 August for his royal audience, where he stayed until 18 October. In both cities, the Ottoman envoy was invited to two different operatic events (serenate); the former took place in Messina, the latter in Naples.

The first serenata, performed on 15 August 1741 in Messina in the palace of Prince of Villa Franca di Buccheri (dates unknown) in honour of Hacı Hüseyin Efendi, is to our knowledge the only opera produced for the visit of an Ottoman diplomat. Entitled La fortuna a piè di Messina ovvero la costanza premiata dalla virtú (̒The Fortune at the Feet of Messina or the Constancy Rewarded by Virtue’), the libretto (poet Placido Cara) of this piece is currently kept in Messina in the Biblioteca Storia Patria, however, it has not yet been made accessible for research by this institution. The second one was given on 11 October 1741 in Naples at Regio Teatro di San Carlo (established 1737). This paper will endeavour to present this quite vivid theatrical and diplomatic story; a case which is not broadly researched and widely known as far as the interest in ̒theatre and diplomacy’ is concerned.


4. Rosita D‘Amora (Lecce – Università del Salento)

The Ministro del Gran Signore and the wondrous beast: Two special guests at the court of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in 1741 and 1742

On 7 April 1740 the Sublime Porte and the recently established Kingdom of the Two Sicilies signed a Treaty of Peace, Commerce and Navigation. The following year the Ottoman Sultan Mahmud I sent to Naples a special envoy, Hacı Hüseyin Efendi, who arrived on 31 August 1741 together with a large retinue and rich gifts for King Carlo III. The Ottoman envoy stayed in Naples for almost two months, attracting great attention and curiosity both from the Bourbon court and the general public. Shortly after Hacı Hüseyin Efendi’s departure, another ̒exotic’ guest arrived from Constantinople: an elephant that Carlo di Borbone had expressly requested from the Neapolitan envoy at the Sublime Porte, Count Giuseppe Finocchietti (ca 1702–1782). The arrival of this wondrous beast, presented to the people as a ̒very precious gift from the Emperor of the Turks’ to the King, was welcomed with great pleasure and astonishment.

Both events prompted intense publicity and special accounts were printed describing all the ceremonies and celebrations that were organized by the Neapolitan court. At the same time, the painter Giuseppe Bonito (1707–1789) was asked to produce paintings of both the Turkish ambassador during his visit and the following year also of the elephant, which clarifies that, when the ambassador was there in 1741 and the elephant the year after, the painter was not commissioned with two portraits in the same moment. Furthermore, both guests were invited to the newly founded Teatro San Carlo – Hacı Hüseyin Efendi to attend a sumptuous banquet and a Serenata organized in his honour a few days before his departure, and the elephant, according to some sources, to be a special ‘extra’ in one of the performances organized by the theatre.

This paper will analyse how the presence in Naples of the Sultan’s envoy and his alleged (the elephant arrived in Naples on 1 November 1742) gift shaped the cultural scene in the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies’ capital both to legitimize the power of the young Bourbonic monarchy and to interpret and display the alluring ‘Orient’.


18:30 onwards Symposium Dinner


Friday, June 14th, 2013

09:30–11:00 Session IV “In the Southwest and West of Europe”

Kingdom of France – Paris (1669–1670, 1787–1793) & Kostantiniyye

Kingdom of Spain – Kostantiniyye (1784) & Madrid (1787)

Chair: Michael Hüttler (Vienna – Don Juan Archiv Wien)

1. David Chataignier (Oxford – Oxford University, Voltaire Foundation)

Süleyman Ağa’s embassy in France as portrayed in rhymed gazettes (1669–1670): Perception and depiction

Süleyman Ağa’s visit to the French court in 1669 is undoubtedly one of the most famous episodes in Franco-Ottoman relations to have taken place since the beginning of the collaboration between François I (r. 1515–1547) and Süleyman the Magnificent (r. 1520–1566). Firstly, as the visit came after decades of indifference tinged with confrontation between the two powers, it can be seen as an extremely significant political act, aiming to revive the Franco-Turkish alliance of earlier times. Secondly, the Turkish envoy attracted much attention in France at the time, giving the event a considerable cultural dimension. Indeed, it has been widely argued by scholars — thereby echoing the views of Chevalier d’Arvieux (1635–1702) — that Molière’s famous Turkish sequence in Le Bourgeois gentilhomme (1670) was inspired by Süleyman Ağa’s time at the French court.

Although these aspects have already been commented on from various standpoints, new light can be shed on our understanding of the impact of the envoy’s visit by examining some of the accounts published by the French press at the time. Apart from the formal Gazette by Théophraste Renaudot (1586–1653), the poetic — and sometimes ludicrous — rhymed newssheets of Charles Robinet de Saint-Jean and La Gravette de Mayolas devote rich accounts about Süleyman’s trip from his arrival in Toulon to his departure along with Nointel, the newly appointed French ambassador to Constantinople.

Through a close examination of the gazettes rimées, which have recently been digitized on the Molière21 database, I will discuss how they depict the Ottoman envoy’s visit and what these images reveal about the perception of a non-fictional Turkish character in late seventeenth-century France, both from a political and a cultural point of view. Connections among these texts and with more formal sources will be made, and the stylistic and rhetorical strategies employed to tell the event will also be explored.


2. Pablo Hernández Sau (Seville – Universidad Pablo de Olavide)

The cultural production associated with the embassies of Gabriel de Aristizábal (1784) and Ahmet Vasıf Efendi (1787) embassies. The significance of Spanish-Ottoman gift embassies in European strategies

Diplomatic agreements and delegations from and to the Ottoman Empire during the late early modern era entailed banquets, hunting trips, receptions, musical creation and splendid presents; these cultural politics developed a political culture with a deep meaning capable of forging diplomatic relations between old arch-enemies.

The eighteenth century was a century of a general change of attitudes in the Ottoman and Spanish Empires, which had been directly or indirectly, opposed until a change of dynasty in Spain. The enthronement of the Bourbon dynasty entailed a gradual turn to friendly relations culminating during the reign of Charles III (r. 1759–1788). The peace and commercial capitulations between the Spanish and Ottoman Empires in 1782 initiated a process of gift exchange and cultural creation that would have been unimaginable at the end of the seventeenth century.

As a result of this new development, both the Spanish and Ottoman envoys invested in ostentatious cultural production. The musical creation of Spanish anacreontic poems or richly decorated saddles, some of the most interesting ambassadorial gifts, provide examples of how cultural policy could have a significant meaning for international politics. A common enemy of empires, England, and a stellar show of Russia and Prussia as potential powers, further encouraged the development of close relations. This new understanding materialized in a peace agreement but also in the gift embassies of Gabriel de Aristizábal (Madrid 1743–1805 Cádiz) to Kostantiniyye in 1784 and Ahmet Vasıf Efendi (Bagdad or lstanbul 1806) to Madrid in 1787.

In both cases, the elaboration of manuscripts (Manuscrito original II-1051 de la Biblioteca Real de Madrid) and Ahmet Vasıf Efendi’s Sefâretnâme (copies kept in Istanbul, Ankara, Cairo, Vienna), allow us to understand the significance of the language of gifts and receptions in the whole diplomatic process as an interesting cultural transnational exchange with deep political roots.


3. Karim Ben Smida (Tübingen – Eberhard Karls Universität)

Between Paris and the Bosporus. Diplomatic and cultural correlations in the early years of the French Revolution (1787–1793)

Looking at the Ottoman Empire and France in the late eighteenth century does not only involve looking at two major European powers in turbulent times of their history. It also involves examining two very prominent ruling figures who shaped and determined these historically dynamic episodes in the two countries: Sultan Selim III. (1761–1808) and King Louis XVI. (1754–1793). These major personalities entered into lasting interactions through their persistent correspondence. There are several known letters that were sent between Paris and the Bosporus. These letters cover a wide range of topics, ranging from various political and diplomatic issues to culture, about which both rulers exchanged their views. These letters represents correspondence on the highest official level. Following intensive research, the above mentioned letters could be unveiled in Istanbul’s archives and are now being brought to wider public attention through a single published volume.

This work aims at providing a broader audience with access to these precious historical documents that give us a deeper insight into the heart of two European superpowers and the way how their means of communication lead to the encounter of each other. The mere existence of these documents and their importance as historical sources was the primary motivation to translate these letters from Ottoman language into German and edit them in a single volume that also comprises a first analysis of these letters with regard to the political language and the formal titles which are used in them.

This editorial work will be completed by supplementary information concerning the historical, political and cultural context into which this correspondence was embedded. Though mainly political, these letters should not solely be analyzed as simply transmitting political agendas or demands. They can rather be seen as sources for cultural diplomatic incidents. Moreover, they are not simply testimonies; they embody the summit of courtly official correspondence and cultural writing in form and style. Therefore the letters themselves are petrified courtly culture of this past but nevertheless highly vivid historical age.

Another aspect this work focusses on is the transfer of culture and knowledge to the Bosporus from elsewhere. Whereas many historians have presented detailed analyses of how Europe has taken over Ottoman impulses, an in-depth look at the counter-current is still lacking though not less valuable in order to present the full historical picture and to complete the colorful mosaic that makes up the multilayered and very differentiated links and liaisons between Orient and Occident and between Seine and Bosporus.


11:00–11:15 Coffee Break


11:15–12:15 Session V “In the Northwest of Europe”

Kingdom of Great Britain – London & Kostantiniyye (1588–1599, 1793–1800)

Chair: Bent Holm (Copenhagen – University of Copenhagen)

1. Florian Kühnel (Berlin – Humboldt Universität)

Cultural transfer in diplomatic gift exchange – Anglo-Ottoman diplomacy around 1600 (1588–1599)

“A great and curious present is going to the Grand Turk, which will scandalize other nations”. With these words a contemporary writer commented on the departure of the Hector, the ship that in 1599 delivered a royal present from Elizabeth I (r. 1558–1603) to Sultan Mehmed III (r. 1595–1603). At this time, Anglo-Ottoman diplomacy was by and large disrupted. Since his accession to the throne four years earlier, Sultan Mehmed had been waiting for the present from the Queen that in his eyes was intrinsic in maintaining diplomatic relationships. Ambassador Edward Barton (c. 1533–1598, in charge 1588–1598) in his letters therefore vigorously warned against a decline of England’s status at the Sublime Porte. After his death, England no longer had an official representative in Constantinople. The designated ambassador Henry Lello (dates unknown), in charge 1598–1607 would not be received by the Sultan as long as he did not deliver an inaugural gift.

To ensure the success of the mission, the English government chose an exceptional present: Since it was well known in Europe how popular mechanical instruments, such as clocks, were in the Ottoman Empire, Queen Elizabeth sent a huge automatic organ that was controlled by an integrated clockwork. It was constructed in the Seraglio and demonstrated to the Sultan, who was allegedly so excited that in the following audience he granted great privileges to English traders. This was the foundation of England’s leadership in the Levant trade during the seventeenth century.

In my presentation I will focus on the different notions of diplomatic gift exchange between Europe and the Ottoman Empire. While the Ottomans saw presents as a tribute that illustrated their superiority, the English regarded them an unpleasant obligation that was necessary to successfully enter the Ottoman market. By delivering a highly developed mechanical instrument, the English tried at the same time to demonstrate their superior technical knowledge. As it will be seen, this example refers to a general pattern of parallel existing ritual codes, which – although they were incompatible to a certain degree – enabled successful negotiations. I will also pay attention to the role of cultural transfer within diplomatic relations between Europe and the Ottoman Empire. In what regard did this transfer serve diplomatic negotiations? Was cultural transfer a means to achieve diplomatic goals?


2. Mehmet Alaaddin Yalçınkaya (Trabzon – Karadeniz Technical University)

The cultural role of ambassadors in Ottoman-British Diplomatic Relations (1793–1800)

Britain and Turkey have a long history of diplomatic relations. Under the reign of Elizabeth I (r. 1558–1603) and Sultan Murat III (r. 1574–1595), formal diplomatic relations between the two were established with the appointment of William Harborne of Great Yarmouth (c. 1575–1617), the first British ambassador to the Sublime Porte in 1583 and remained in charge until 1588. The Ottoman and the British Empires had good political, diplomatic, commercial and cultural relations in general and the British ambassadors at the Porte had quite an active role in Ottoman-British diplomatic encounters. Subsequently, in 1793 the Ottoman Empire established the first permanent embassy in England by sending Yusuf Agâh Efendi (1744–1824). His arrival in London on 21 December 1793 marked the establishment of reciprocal diplomatic relations for the first time in Ottoman history.

The ambassadors and their retinues played an essential role in developing cultural relations between the two empires. Also the short-term employment of British experts and technicians commenced in the last decade of the eighteenth century for service of the Ottoman Empire. For example, Selim III (r. 1789–1807) realized the need for a series of reforms in order to save the Empire from an inevitable demise; European ambassadors in Kostantiniyye recruited a number of experts and advisors, all of whom were well-established industrialists of English, Italian, Swedish, Austrian, Spanish, Prussian and Russian origins.

This paper aims to examine the cultural role of ambassadors in Ottoman-British diplomatic relations and their influence on cross-cultural exchange between the two empires in the last decade of the eighteenth century. In particular, the views of British and Ottoman missions will be evaluated from cultural perspectives based on historical documents such as the accounts of Yusuf Agâh Efendi (Havadisname-i İngiltere [̒Accounts of Events in England’], 1798) and Mahmud Raif Efendi (Journal du voyage de Mahmoud Raif Efendi en Angleterre, écrit par luy-même, 1797). The accounts of the British diplomatic representatives on the Ottoman palace, harem, mosques, janissaries, feasts and other customs will also be examined. In addition, the cultural impact of the first permanent Ottoman ambassadors to London, Yusuf Agâh Efendi (ambassador 1793–1797), Ismail Ferruh Efendi (ambassador 1797–1800) and their retinues will be explored.


12:15–13:30 Lunch Break


13:30–14:30 Session VI “In the North of Europe”

Kingdom of Denmark – Barbary States (1753) &Copenhagen (1757)

Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth – Warsaw (1777–1778) & Kostantiniyye (1789–1792)

Chair: Günsel Renda (Istanbul – Koç University)

1. Bent Holm (Copenhagen – University of Copenhagen)

Stagings and strategies. Diplomatic relations between Denmark and the Ottoman Empire in the eighteenth centuries (1753, 1757)

The nature of Danish diplomatic relations to the Ottoman Empire in the eighteenth century can be examined on three levels: a political level – which commercial and military interests were at stake? A representative level – how was this staged and communicated? An artistic level – how was it reflected and transformed in the arts and crafts? However, the interesting point is the cross field, the interaction between those levels.

The primary Danish interest in this era was in Mediterranean and Levantine trade. The strategy, which on a high political level affected the state’s relations to France, Sweden and Russia in particular, aimed at making peace agreements with the Sublime Porte and the Barbary States – a kind of diplomatic relations which were actually developed during the 1740s and 1750s. The focus in this paper will be on two significant episodes: the return of a Danish diplomatic expedition, including a foreign representative, to the Barbary States in 1753, and an Ottoman ambassador’s visit to Copenhagen in 1757. Both episodes resulted in artistic representations. A significant source – hitherto somewhat neglected – is the newspaper Kiøbenhavnske Post-Tidende, which published the expedition log, listed the oriental presents to the Danish king, and covered the ritualized reception of the foreign ambassador in detail.

Which strategic agendas can be deduced from the official stagings and reactions, if read in a more complex context – between an actual inferiority and an exposed superiority? And how is the artistic image of the Ottoman Empire conveyed to the public affected, if read in this context?

2. Hacer Topaktaş (Ankara – Hacettepe University)

Gifting through diplomats: Cases of the last Ottoman (Numan Enis Bey, 1777–1778) and Polish (Franciszek Piotr Potocki, 1789–1792) extraordinary envoys

In the eighteenth century there were several diplomatic embassies between the Ottoman Empire and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Numan Enis Bey (Kostantiniyye to Warsaw 1777–1778) and Piotr Potocki (Warsaw to Kostantiniyye 1789–1792) were the last envoys sent before the third partition of Poland. Numan Enis Bey, the envoy of Sultan Abdulhamid I (r. 1774–1789), delivered gifts to the Polish King Stanisław August Poniatowski (r. 1764–1795), among which were horses, horse harnesses, saddles and stirrups with rich embellishments, Kostantiniyye-style materials, and carpets. In return, King Stanisław August sent gifts including Polish porcelain materials for Abdulhamid I with Numan Enis Bey in 1778. Stanisław August also sent various presents to Sultan Selim III (r. 1789–1807) through his ambassador Franciszek Piotr Potocki (1745–1829). The last Polish ambassador submitted very elegant gifts to Selim III in 1790. Among these gifts there were clocks, gold and silver decorated pots and pans, and amber decorated accessories. Sultan Selim III gave Potocki and his corps of diplomats very exclusive caftans and furs.I intend to explore the practice of gift giving as an expression of cultural politics between these two polities as well as the importance of these gifts, along with their symbolic and materialistic values, as contrived representations of each polity’s respective culture. As such, we can see that in addition to political and diplomatic tasks, diplomats were transmitters of cultural politics in the early modern times.


14:30–14:45 Coffee Break


14:45–16:15 Session VII “In the North of Central Europe”

Kingdom of Prussia – Berlin (1763–1764, 1784–1817)

Chair: Suna Suner (Vienna – Don Juan Archiv Wien)

1. Abdullah Güllüoğlu (Berlin – Freie Universität)

A Costume Album Depicting an Ottoman Delegation to Berlin 1763–1764

On November 9th 1763 an Ottoman delegation headed by the envoy Ahmed Resmî Efendi (1694/95–1783) had its solemn public entry into Berlin, the capital of Prussia. The presence of the Ottomans in Berlin was a spectacular event which drew far more than the attention of Berlin on-lookers. Several European newspapers reported events associated with this delegation. Furthermore, Ahmed Resmî Efendi and his retinue often became the subjects of contemporary drawings, paintings, engravings and etchings.

Among these, a costume album is preserved in the manuscript collection of the Berlin State Library, which has not yet received the attention it deserves. The distinctive feature of this costume album lies in the opulence and expense of its production. All figures in the album were produced by means of paper cutting. There are captions to describe each individual’s function. But not one single name appears. A contemporary stamp designates the album as belonging to the royal library in Berlin (Königliche Haus-Bibliothek Berlin).

An increased interest in Ottoman people and lands, especially after the conquest of Istanbul in 1453, led, between 1480 and 1609, to the publication of twice as many books about the Ottoman Empire as about the New World. In those centuries, among the sources of information about the Ottoman Empire illustrated travelogues were a popular genre. The step from illustrated travelogues to costume albums on the Ottoman Empire extended into the second half of the sixteenth century. This period witnessed a great interest and a rapid increase in the number of hand-painted costume albums on the Ottoman Empire.

These primarily hand-painted costume albums have been supplemented over time by printed albums. It is very interesting and not surprising to see that the Berlin costume album was modelled on a printed French album. This latter is a collection of engravings published by the former French ambassador to Istanbul Marquis Charles d’Argental, comte de Ferriol (1637–1722, ambassador 1699–1711). After his return to Paris Marquis de Ferriol published together with Jacques Le Hay the Recueil de cent estampes représentant différentes nations du Levant, (Paris, Le Hay et Duchange, 1714) as a collection of engravings based on the paintings of Jean-Baptiste Vanmour (1671–1737). The “Recueil Ferriol” was an instant success with further editions and reproductions subsequently published in various European languages. The first German edition of the Recueil Ferriol was printed in Nürnberg in two parts 1719 and 1721 by the German engraver and publisher Christoph Weigel. Because the Recueil Ferriol was widely available and well known throughout Europe, we may presume that the anonymous artist of the Berlin costume album apparently knew it very well and in particular its German edition. A brief look at the three collections would be sufficient to see the similarities.

Nearly all costume albums dealing with the Ottoman Empire share some common characteristics. Their illustrations depict costumes of the Ottoman court, janissaries, clerics, people of various social classes, inhabitants of Anatolia and the provinces, representatives of minorities. Certainly it wouldn’t be wrong to claim that the costume albums of the Ottoman Empire were intended as representations of the Ottoman world as a whole. Their focus was always on the sultan and his court. It is here that the Berlin album can be differentiated from earlier albums. It was intended to depict only a limited subject matter, namely those groups of people who were related and meaningful in the context of an Ottoman delegation. The album took not the sultan but his envoy as the highest Ottoman representative abroad and his retinue for its central subject matter.

The costume album from Berlin was not an astoundingly original work. It followed an established tradition of depicting people from foreign lands. The artist had an earlier work to guide him. Some of the Recueil Ferriol sketches were cribbed but then cleverly adapted to new purposes by means of re-naming and the addition of captions. Whereas the Recueil Ferriol attempted to depict Ottoman society broadly, the Berlin album tied its sketches to a specific historical event. It cannot be entirely excluded that the artist of the Berlin album, using the ample descriptions of the Ottoman delegation in the contemporary newspapers, created new sketches particularly appropriate to this delegation. It is here that the Berlin album takes on special significance. Its exquisite technique and use of materials is remarkable. It is neither a book of sketches nor one of engravings, but a creation utilizing the actual sumptuous textiles of the time, an especially appropriate expression of the way in which Turkish attire was understood in eighteenth century Europe. We can say in conclusion that it is an artistic masterpiece of transcultural hybrid origins.


2. Lela Gibson (Los Angeles – University of California)

Ambassadors as intellectuals: Prussian-Ottoman knowledge exchange, 1784–1817

Diplomats are often described by their political functions: ambassador, envoy, chargé d’affaires. But another description could also fit late-eighteenth century Prussian and Ottoman statesmen: intellectuals. The field of diplomatic history has documented political exchange between states and their representatives, but can the study of ambassadors also contribute to cultural and intellectual history? What kinds of contributions did diplomats make to cultural and intellectual exchange on the ̒sidelines’ of their political missions – In lodges, salons, and theatres? This paper examines a network of Prussian and Ottoman diplomats, who were also intellectuals, in the late eighteenth century. Members of this network exchanged ideas relating to the philosophical issues of their time, including the Enlightenment, with one another. The paper draws from their letters, travelogues, and publications in German and Ottoman Turkish to examine knowledge exchange among this transnational network of diplomats.

At the centre of the network is Heinrich von Diez (1751–1817), the Prussian chargé d’affaires in Istanbul from 1784–1791. Diez was a figure in the German Enlightenment before his service in Istanbul, publishing various treatises on Enlightenment themes such as freedom of the press and religious toleration. He also corresponded with key Enlightenment thinkers of his time, such as Christian von Dohm and Friedrich Nicolai. It was Diez’s publishing activities, and the help of von Dohm, that brought him to the attention of King Frederick II, who appointed him Prussian chargé d’affaires to the Sublime Porte. Diez’s main diplomatic mission in Turkey was to secure an alliance treaty with the Ottoman Empire against Russia and the Habsburg Empire, which was concluded in 1791.

Through his work in Istanbul, Diez came into contact with several Ottoman intellectuals. The first was the sheikh of the Galata Mevlevi (Sufi) Lodge, Sultanzâde Numan Halil Dede (d. 1799), who Diez referred to as his teacher. The second was the Ottoman envoy Ahmed Azmi Efendi (d. 1820), who journeyed to Berlin after the conclusion of the alliance treaty Diez (and after Diez had returned to Berlin). Azmi’s Sefâretnâme (embassy report), combined with Prussian bureaucratic and newspaper reports, shows that he spent considerable time with other intellectuals in Berlin alongside his diplomatic mission. The third was the first permanent Ottoman ambassador to Prussia, Ali Aziz Efendi (d. 1798), who went to Berlin in 1796 and died and was buried there. Diez and Aziz Efendi exchanged a series of philosophical letters exploring philosophy and religion before his death. The ideas with which the diplomat-intellectuals engaged highlight the intersection between European and Ottoman thought, the Enlightenment and Islamic philosophy, and the diplomats’ contribution to cultural and intellectual exchange in addition to their roles as political actors.



Davide Baldi

Davide Baldi was born in Arezzo, Italy in 1977. After a Degree in Papyrology (2001) at the University of Florence, he participated (2001–2004) in the European project Rinascimento Virtuale – Digitale Palimpsestforschung. In 2005 he earned the title of “Palaeographus graecus” by Vatican School of Palaeography, Diplomatic and Archivist (Diplomats and Archives Administration?). In 2011 he received a PhD degree in Byzantine Philology at Udine University (Udine, Italy); in 2013 he won a Fellowship at Harvard University I Tatti (starting in July). Having studied the ancient codex of Justinian Law (VI–XX century) and the medieval text tradition of Aristotelian Poetics, Baldi published the edition of byzantine Etymologicum Symeonis (forthcoming June 2013). Being also the first editor of Amerigo Vespucci’s Esercizi, the small book with the texts in Vernacular and their Latin translation (2008). He published (2004) the Letters of Alessandro Pini to Francesco Redi and the first edition with an Italian translation of De moribus Turcarum. Baldi is the translator of the most important geographical and astronomical treatise Cosmographiae introductio (1507) of M. Waldseemüller from Latin to Italian (2011).


Nedret Kuran Burçoğlu

Comparatist and Translation Scholar Nedret Kuran-Burçoğlu is Professor at Yeditepe University, in Istanbul. She studied English Language and Literature, Modern Turkish Literature, German Literature and Culture and Translation Studies. Her publications focus on Translation Studies and Comparative Cultural Studies, comprising Comparative Literature, Imagology and other transnational, intercultural themes. Until 2000 she was teaching in Boğaziçi University, Istanbul. During the 2000–2001 academic year she was a visiting scholar at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies of Harvard University, USA. Since 2001 she has been teaching in various programmes of the Faculty of Science and Arts of Yeditepe University. She has initiated the following research projects, in which experts from various disciplines have taken part: Multiculturalism: Identity and Otherness (1997), The Image of the Turk in Europe from the Declaration of the Republic in 1923 to 1990s (2000), Representations of the ‘Other/s’ in the Mediterranean World and Their Impact on the Region (2004), A New Mediterranean Policy in the Making: Towards a Multicultural Dialogue, Coherence and Accountability and Turks in Germany – Germans in Turkey in historical, literary and political context. The texts of the first three projects were published as anthologies. The projects were supported by The Council of Europe, European Cultural Foundation, UNESCO and the Press Council of the Prime Minister. Her PhD thesis the Reception of J.W. von Goethe in Turkey and an Analysis on Faust Translations (1984) and her Habilitation Translation as an Intercultural Communication Phenomenon on the Example of Turkish and English Translations of Ingeborg Bachmann’s The Thirtieth Year (1993) were published by Boğaziçi University Press. Her book the History of Printing in the Ottoman Empire that she translated from Franz Babinger (2004) was published by the Turkish History Foundation. Her book entitled Die Wandlungen des Türkenbildes in Europa (2005) was published by Spur Verlag, in Zürich. Kuran-Burçoğlu is the President of the Crossroads Interdisciplinary Research and Policy Platform that she founded together with thirteen other scholars of social sciences in Istanbul.


David Chataignier

David Chataignier is a Research Editor at the Voltaire Foundation (University of Oxford) where he is currently involved in completing the first complete critical edition of Voltaire’s works. Chataignier holds a PhD from the Sorbonne on the representation of the Ottoman Empire in French tragedy (supervisor: Prof. Georges Forestier). Since 2005, he has authored many articles on Orientalism, both in French and in English. His main publications include a study of the fictional character of Hürrem Sultan in French theatre (“Roxelane on the French Tragic Stage: 1561–1681”, Fortune and Fatality. Performing the Tragic in Early Modern France, Desmond Hosford and Charles Wrightington eds, Cambridge Scholars Press, 2008), writings on the Turkish subject in early modern France and a biographical note on the Orientalist author Georges Guillet de Saint-Georges ( From 2006 to 2010, he was a member of the ANR-Sorbonne Project Molière 21 (directed by Georges Forestier and Claude Bourqui) where he helped to establish a double edition of Molière’s works: a print version edited by Gallimard (Bibliothèque de la Pléiade) and an internet database on the Sorbonne website ( David Chataignier speaks French, English and Italian.


Rosita D’Amora

Rosita D’Amora is Assistant professor of Turkish Language and Culture at the Università del Salento (Lecce, Italy). In her research she has always been interested in the different perspectives brought by an attention to literary texts, historical documents, and objects. Her publications range from interdisciplinary analysis related to different forms of representation and auto-representation of Ottoman society, through the socio-politics of the turban, to a comparison of the perception of slavery and manumission between the Ottoman and Christian world in the 17th century. More recently she also investigated some recent tendencies of contemporary Turkish literature pertaining to diverse contexts of marginality and authored a Turkish practical grammar book for university students. Her recent publications include: Corso di lingua turca, Milano: Ulrico Hoepli, 2012; Writing through osmotic borders: boundaries, liminality and language in Mehmet Yashin’s poetics in Thinking on the Threshold, Subha Mukherji (ed.), London: Anthem Press, 2011; Hammam. Le terme nell’Islam, Firenze: Leo Olschki, 2011 (co-edited with Samuela Pagani) and Percorsi orientali di scrittura femminile, in Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana fondata da Giovanni Treccani, 2009.


Evelyn Denham

Evelyn Denham is a Gates-Cambridge Scholar studying for an MPhil in European Literature at the University of Cambridge, currently working on conceptions of Europe in Lohenstein’s Arminius novel. In 2012 she graduated summa cum laude from Williams College, where she received highest honors in History for her BA thesis on Mustafa Hatti Efendi’s embassy to Vienna, “Permanent Neighbors, Exceptional Friends: The Ottoman Embassy to Vienna in 1748.” She received competitive research funding for the summers of 2010 and 2011 to conduct research at the Haus-, Hof- und Staatsarchiv in Vienna, and will continue her research on Ottoman-Habsburg diplomatic relations for my PhD.


Lela Gibson

Lela Gibson is a doctoral candidate at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her dissertation, titled “Tracing the Ottoman Enlightenment: Ottoman-Prussian Intellectual Exchange, 1784–1815,” explores the intersection between Enlightenment thought and Islamic philosophy during a period of intellectual exchange between Prussia and the Ottoman Empire in the late eighteenth century. She has recently authored a book chapter in Religion, Identity and Politics: Germany and Turkey in Interaction, edited by Haldun Gülalp and Günter Seufert, titled "The Ottoman Empire, Islam and the Emergence of German National Identity, 1789–1815," to be published by Routledge in June 2013.


Abdullah Güllüoğlu

Abdullah Güllüoğlu (MA) studied Linguistics, Philosophy, and Pedagogy at the Technische Universität Berlin and the University of London and Turkology at the Freie Universität Berlin. Between 2007 and 2010 he was a member of the Research Group "Self-Narratives in Transcultural Perspective“ of the German Research Foundation (DFG) at the Freie Universität in Berlin. Güllüoğlu currently continues his doctoral studies on “Ottoman envoys/ambassadors and their reports from the Habsburg Monarchy and Prussia in the 17th and 18th centuries in their historical contexts” at the Freie Universität Berlin in the Doctoral Program “History and Cultural Studies”. He has recently published articles on Ottoman diplomacy and ambassadorial reports.


Stefan Hanß

Stefan Hanß studied Early Modern History (major), German Philology, Philosophy, Art History, Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at the Free University Berlin, the Università Ca’Foscari Venice and the Warburg Institute London. Since 2011, he is a PhD student examining the contemporary reactions on the battle of Lepanto (supervised by Prof Ulbrich, Berlin, and Dr Rublack, Cambridge). He has been a fellow of the German National Foundation (since 2006), German Academic Exchange Service and the German Historical Institute in Rome as well as a trainee and freelancer of the GHIL London. Several articles on Ottoman-European relations are published in various international peer-reviewed journals and volumes or currently in print. An extensive edited volume on Mediterranean slavery is in production.


Pablo Hernández Sau

Pablo Hernandez Sau is a graduate student in the Master’s Program “Historia de Europa, el mundo mediterráneo y su difusión atlántica. Métodos, teorías y nuevas líneas de investigación (1492–2000)” at the Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville, Spain, a history program directed by Manuel Herrero Sánchez, Giovanni Levi and Bartolomé Yun Casalilla. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in History at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (2007–2012) focusing on Early Modern History. During 2010–2011 he studied Ottoman History with an Erasmus Grant at the Middle East Technical University of Ankara, where he discovered his vocation of analyzing historical relationships in the Mediterranean. During the last year he received a collaboration grant from the Spanish Ministry of Education, and wrote his first article, ‘A Friend, not more an Infidel´. Eighteenth century Spanish-Ottoman relationships, a study of Mediterranean Sea Transitional Diplomacy” published in, nº5, Otoño-Invierno, 2012.


Bent Holm

Born in 1946; M.A., Dr.phil.; Associate Professor, Institute for Arts and Cultural Studies, University of Copenhagen. Bent Holm has conducted research travels to Italy, France and India, and is a dramaturge and translator of plays, especially those by Dario Fo and Carlo Goldoni. His doctoral dissertation was on Comédie Italienne in a broad cultural, religious, and iconographic context, and he has published interdisciplinary studies on historical and dramaturgical issues in English, French, Polish and Italian. Special research focuses include the relationship between visual arts and theatre; drama analysis and creative theatre production; and theatricality and rituality. He is a lecturer at several international universities and research centres. Holm is also a member of scientific committees and networks in Paris, Mantova and Torino, among other cities. Member of advisory board for TheMA (Hollitzer Verlag). Recent publications include Religion, Ritual, Theatre (co-ed., contributor), Peter Lang, Frankfurt-New York, 2008. Tyrk kan tæmmes. Osmannere på den danske scene 1596–1896, Multivers, Copenhagen 2010 (English version is being prepared: The Taming of the Turk: Ottoman Figures on the Danish Stage 1596–1896). “Stagings of Divine Power” in K. Banks & Ph. Bossier, ed.s, Commonplace Culture in Western Europe in the Early Modern Period, Peeters, Leuven 2011. “The Turk Unbound: The Captivity/Release Motif in Danish Theatrical Turqueries” in North – West Passage 8, Turin 2012.


Zeynep İnankur

Zeynep İnankur is a professor at the Art History Department of Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in İstanbul. She is the author of 19. Yüzyıl Avrupasında Heykel ve Resim Sanatı (Kabalcı Yayınevi, 1997 Painting and Sculpture in 19th Century European Art); "The Official Painters of the Ottoman Court", Art Turc, 10e Congres Internationale d'art turc ,Fondation Max van Berchem, 1999) and “Orientalisti ltaliani"(ltalian Orientalists), Gli Italiani di istanbul: Figure, Comunita e stituzioni dalle Riforme alia Repubblica 1839–1923, (Edizioni della Fondazione 3iovanni Agnelli, 2007). İnankur whose area of interest is 19th century European and Ottoman art and Orientalist painting, is the co-author with Semra Germaner of Orientalism and Turkey (Turkish Cultural foundation, Istanbul, 1989) and Constantinople and the Orientalists (Isbank Cultural Publications, Istanbul, 2002). She is the co-editor with Reina Lewis and Mary Roberts of The Poetics and Politics of Place Ottoman Istanbul and British Orientalism (University of Washington Press, 2011). She is the co-curator of Dream and Reality: Modern and Contemporary Women artists from Turkey an exhibition organized by Istanbul Modern Museum.


Michael Hüttler

Dr.phil. Born in Tulln, Lower Austria. Studied theatre, film and media studies as well as journalism and communication studies at Vienna University; worked in a bank for several years prior to studying. Has been teaching at Yeditepe University Istanbul (2001–2003) and at Vienna University, Department for Theatre, Film and Media studies (2003–2010). He has been conducting research for the Da Ponte Institute and the Don Juan Archiv Wien since 2001. From 2007 to 2010 he has been director of Don Juan Archiv Wien and since 2011 he is head of Hollitzer Verlag. Member of the Groupe international de recherches interdisciplinaires “Spectacle vivant et sciences de l’homme” at the Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Paris. Current research focuses on theatre in the eighteenth century and the Turkish subject in European theatre. He has published on Mozart, theatre-ethnology, business-theatre, and experimental theatre in Austria, including: Aufbruch zu neuen Welten: Theatralität an der Jahrtausendwende, ed. with Susanne Schwinghammer and Monika Wagner. Frankfurt/Main: IKO, 2000; Theater. Begegnung. Integration?, ed. with Susanne Schwinghammer and Monika Wagner. Frankfurt/Main: IKO, 2003; Unternehmenstheater: Vom Theater der Unterdrückten zum Theater der Unternehmer? Stuttgart: ibidem, 2005; (ed.) Hermann Nitsch: Wiener Vorlesungen. Vienna: Böhlau, 2005; (ed.) Lorenzo Da Ponte. Vienna: Böhlau, 2007; Il corpo del teatro, ed. with Ulf Birbaumer and Guido di Palma. Vienna: Hollitzer/Lehner, 2009; Ottoman Empire and European Theatre I – The Age of Mozart and Selim III, ed. with H.E. Weidinger. Vienna: Hollitzer, 2013.

Ralf Martin Jäger

Univ.Prof. Dr. Ralf M. Jäger (Ph.D. 1993: “Turkish Art Music and its Manuscript Sources from the 19. Century”, Habilitation 1999: “Europe and the Ottoman Empire in Music, ca. 1500 to 1800”) is Professor of Ethnomusicology and European Music History at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster. He started his academic career in 1999 as visiting professor of Musicology at the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn. From 2000 until 2004 he deputized the chair of Musicology at the WWU Münster and from 2005 to 2009 he was Lecturer and Senior Researcher both at the Musicological Department of WWU Münster (since 2008 Professor) and University of Music "Franz Liszt" in Weimar. From 2009 to 2011 Prof. Jäger held the Chair of Ethnomusicology at the Department of Music Research, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg. He has been lecturing in Göttingen, Istanbul, Mainz, Saarbrücken and Zürich.Since 1995 Jäger is head of the Dissertationsmeldestelle (Doctoral Dissertations in Musicology) of Gesellschaft für Musikforschung (GfM); 2000 to 2004 he was vice-president of the German national committee of the International Council for Traditional Music; 2002 to 2005 Jäger acted as deputy chair of the study group Ethnomusicology (German Musicological Society). He currently directs the projects of the GfM in the Virtuelle Fachbibliothek Musikwissenschaft (ViFa Musik). In 2005 Prof. Jäger was awarded with the “Hendrik Casimir-Karl Ziegler Research Grant” by the North-Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences.


Seyfi Kenan

Associate Prof. (Marmara University, İstanbul) Seyfi Kenan received his B.A. from Marmara University (1989) and completed his graduate studies with a doctoral degree at Columbia University in New York City using an interdisciplinary method with a concentration on Turkish educational modernization and philosophy of education. He has carried out, as a research coordinator, a number of researches for a variety of projects at Columbia University (1996–2003). He is currently full-time associate professor at Marmara University in İstanbul. Among his research interests are the formation of Turkish educational thought, modern philosophies of education, and realms of socio-cultural interactions between Turkey and Europe in modern times.


Florian Kühnel

Florian Kühnel studied Historical Anthropology, Ancient History and Prehistoric Archaeology in Freiburg im Breisgau. From 2008 to 2011 he was a PhD student in the graduate school of the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics in Pre-Modern and Modern Cultures” in Münster. He wrote his thesis “Deseased Honour? Suicide in the Early Modern Nobility” under the supervision of Barbara Stollberg-Rilinger and Peter Burschel. Since 2011 he is employed at the Chair of Early Modern History at the Humboldt University of Berlin in the DFG-project “Diplomatic persona and political ritual: Western European envoy confessions from the Ottoman Empire”. In that his focus lies on the confessions of the English Ambassadors at the Sublime Porte. Submitted article on the subject: „Ein Königreich für einen Botschafter. Die Audienzen Thomas Bendishs in Konstantinopel während des Commonwealth“ [= A Kingdom for an Ambassador. The Audiences of Thomas Bendish in Constantinople during the Commonwealth], will be published in: Burschel, Peter /Vogel, Christine (Hgg.): Audienzen transkulturell. Ritualisierte Kommunikation und inszenierte Begegnung in der Frühen Neuzeit (expected 2013).


Tatjana Marković

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tatjana Marković has been teaching at the department resp. institue of musicology at the University of Arts in Belgrade, the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien, the Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz and the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Ljubljana, as well as a guest lecturer at the Texas State University and the New York University. She has been a chief or member of international projects at the universities in Vienna, Bonn, Paris, Helsinki, and New York. She is working on her postdoctoral project Opera and the idea of self-representation in Southeast Europe at the Austrian Academy of Sciences. She is a member of the editorial board of Nutida Musik (Stockholm) and of Glasbeno-pedagoški zbornik (Ljubljana), as well as member of the advisory board of TheMA – Open Access Research Journal for Theatre, Music, Arts (Vienna). Marković has published on the 18th–20th–century music. Books: Transfiguracije srpskog romantizma: Muzika u kontekstu studija kulture (‘Transfigurations of Serbian Romanticism: Music in the context of cultural studies’, Belgrade, 2005), Istorijske i analitičko-teorijske koordinate stila u muzici (‘Historical and analytical.theoretical coordinates of style in music’, Belgrade, 2009), Galina Ivanovna Ustovl’skaja – Komponieren als Obsession with Andreas Holzer (Köln, Weimar, Wien, 2013, forthcoming), Re/Constructing cultural memory: The cult of Nikola Zrinski in Croatian opera (Wien, 2013, forthcoming) and others.


Mikael Rasmussen

Mikael Bøgh Rasmussen, PhD, Art Historian, Danish, born 1970. After studies in Art History in Copenhagen and Rome he has been employed at The National Gallery of Art in Copenhagen, at the Museum of National History at Frederiksborg Castle, at Copenhagen University, and at The Danish National Art Library in Copenhagen. Specializing in Early Christian Art and German and Danish Renaissance, he has published internationally on these subjects. Since 2005 his research has focused on the cognitive function of portraits and on the description of Ottoman society in Northern European Renaissance Art. He is the co-author of the recent monograph on the artist Melchior Lorck (1526/27–after 1583) and part of the team behind a full Danish translation of Ogier Ghislain de Busbecqs Turkish Letters. With Bent Holm he is the editor of a forthcoming volume on Imagined, Embodied and Actual Turks in the Early Modern Era.


Günsel Renda

Received her B.A. degree from Barnard College, Columbia University, an M.A. from Washington University, and her Ph.D. from Hacettepe University in Art History. She has worked at Hacettepe University and chaired the History of Art department for many years. She is presently teaching at Koç University in Istanbul. She has served as advisor to the Turkish Ministry of Culture and organized several international exhibitions. She was a Fulbright visiting scholar in USA and guest professor at Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes à la Sorbonne in Paris. She has been a member of the governing board at IRCICA. She has lectured on Turkish art in the USA and several countries in Europe and Asia, and has participated in many international research projects. She is the author and co-author of books published in the United States, Europe and Turkey, and of many articles. Günsel Renda specializes in Ottoman art, Ottoman painting and interactions of European and Ottoman cultures. Some of the books she has edited, co-edited and written are The Transformation of Culture: The Atatürk Legacy (ed. G. Renda, M. Kortepeter), Princeton 1986; A History of Turkish Painting (Grabar, Renda, Turani, Özsezgin) Genève-Istanbul 1988; Woman in Anatolia: 900 Years of the Anatolian Woman (ed. G. Renda) Istanbul 1994; The Sultan’s Portrait: Picturing the House of Osman (Neciboglu, Raby, Majer, Meyer-zur-Capellen, Bagcı, Mahir, Renda), Istanbul 2000; The Ottoman Civilization (ed. H. Inalcik, G. Renda), Istanbul 2002; Minnet av Konstantinople. Den osmansk-turkiska 1700-talssamlingen pa Biby (Achlund, Adahl, Brown, Karlsson, Kaberg, Laine, Renda), Stockholm 2003; Image of the Turks in the 17th Century Europe (Neumann, Stepanek, Yerasimos, Renda, Gardina, Grothaus, Vidmar), Istanbul 2005; and Osmanlı Resim Sanatı (Ottoman Painting) (Serpil Bağcı, Filiz Çağman, Günsel Renda, Zeren Tanındı).


Karim Ben Smida

Karim Ben Smida is born 1984 and raised in the south west of Germany he graduated from Münsingen Gymnasium in 2006. His German-Tunisian background lead him to take up history and oriental studies at Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, where he has gained in-depth knowledge of oriental languages ancient and contemporary. Aside his historical formation these language skills have provided him with the opportunity to acquire, translate edit and evaluate these unique historical sources in the frame of his thesis attended by Prof. Dr. Matthias Asche.


Suna Suner

Suna Suner (M.A.) is a performing arts researcher and a stage performer. Born in Ankara, Suner received her B.A. degree in Conference Translation & Interpretation (Turkish & English) from Hacettepe University. Having worked as Instructor of English (1996–2002) and as Teaching Assistant at the Management of Performing Arts department (2000–2002) at Istanbul Bilgi University, she received in 2004 her M.A. degree in Performing Arts from the Middlesex University in London. She worked as stage performer between 1997–2003 at the Istanbul-based Kumpanya Theatre Company having also devised independent performances. As singer, she has made diverse recordings performed in numerous Turkish festivals and venues. In 2006 she was invited as performance artist to the 1st International Sinop Biennial Sinopale. Between 2004–2007 Suner worked as archive associate at the Viennese Da Ponte Institute and in January 2007 joined the team of Don Juan Archiv Wien as project director and performing arts researcher. Suner is doctoral candidate at the Institute of Theatre, Film & Media Studies at the University of Vienna, and continues her performance work in Vienna. Latest performance work in the performance-action Österreicher Integriert Euch! within Wiener Festwochen, a co-production of the Viennese theatre company God's Entertainment and Wiener Festwochen (June 2012). Main areas of research and interest: Theatre studies, Turkish Opera/Opera in Turkey, Ottoman Arts & Culture, African-American Culture & Heritage, Kabarettkultur Weimarer Republik (1919–1933), Performance arts, Performance Studies.


Hacer Topaktaş

Hacer Topaktaş graduated from the Karadeniz Technical University, Department of History Education. She completed her MA thesis on Ottoman-Polish relations titled Ottoman-Polish Diplomatical Relations in the Light of the Ottoman Sefaretnames between the years 1730–1763 in 2005, and her PhD thesis titled The Last Polish Ambassador in Istanbul: Ottoman-Polish Diplomatic Relations Based on the Embassy of Franciszek Piotr Potocki and its International Extend (1788–1793) in 2012. She has been in Poland at the Warsaw and Jagiellon University and in the Polish archives and libraries for several times. She has been for academic purposes also in England, France, Germany and Russia. She can speak very well in Polish and English, read in French and Russian. She has several articles and papers in Turkish, Polish and English.


Mehmet Alaaddin Yalçınkaya

Born in Orta/Çankırı in 1964, Mehmet Alaaddin Yalçınkaya graduated from Ankara University, Faculty of Languages and History, Geography (DTCF), Department of General Turkish History in 1985. He was awarded a Ph.D. from Birmingham University, Faculty of Arts, the Centre for Ottoman Studies in 1993. He has been since that year a history department member of Arts and Sciences, Karadeniz Technical University, Trabzon. He worked as the head of department of History (1997–2001 and since 2005) and also as the director of Social Science Institute (2001–2004). He has published many articles on Ottoman diplomacy, especially the establishment of first permanent Ottoman-Turkish embassies in Europe and their activities, and also British embassies activities in the Ottoman Empire at that period. He has written some articles on Recruitment of European Experts for the Service in the Ottoman Empire (1700–1808). He has delivered papers at the conferences in Turkey, Northern Cyprus, the U.K., Germany, Romania, Azerbaijan, Crimea and Ukraine.

Letztes Update: 19.02.2015