The Ottoman Empire was the latest in a series of Turkish Muslim empires. It spread from Asia Minor at the beginning of 1300, eventually covering most of the Middle East, most of North Africa and parts of Europe, including modern Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia. In the Middle East, the Ottomans ruled Syria, Palestine, Egypt, parts of Arabia and Iraq. Only Persia (Iran) and the eastern part of the Arabian peninsula has remained free of Ottoman rule. The empire reached around the Black Sea and the Caucasus, Central Asia, including Aremenia. The Ottoman armies reached the gates of Vienna, where they were defeated for the second time in 1683, the height of its expansion in the earth. The following map shows the extent of the Ottoman Empire in 1683.
The Ottoman state began as one of many small Turkish states that emerged in Asia Minor subdivision of the empire of the Seljuk Turks. The Ottoman Turks began to absorb other states, and during the reign (1451-1481) of Muhammad II ended all other local Turkish dynasties. The first phase of Ottoman expansion took place under Osman I, Orkhan, Murad I, Bayezid I at the expense of the Byzantine Empire, Bulgaria and Serbia. Bursa fell in 1326 and Adrianople (Edirne modern) in 1361, and each in turn became the capital of the empire. The great Ottoman victories of Kosovo Field (1389) and Nikopol (1396) placed large parts of the Balkan Peninsula under Ottoman rule and awakened Europe to the Ottoman danger. The Ottoman siege of Constantinople was lifted at the appearance of Timur, who defeated and captured in Bayezid 1402nd The Ottomans, however, soon gathered.
The Empire, united by Muhammad I, expanded victoriously under Muhammad’s successors Murad II and Muhammad II. Victory (1444) at Varna over a Crusader army led by Ladislaus III of Poland was followed in 1453 with the conquest of Constantinople. In a century, the Ottomans had changed from a nomadic horde to the heirs of the oldest surviving empire of Europe. Their success is partly due to the weakness and disunity of their adversaries, partly for the excellent arrangements and far superior military. Their army consisted of many Christians, called not only which were organized as the corps of Janissaries, but also volunteers. Turkish expansion reached its zenith in the 16th cents. under Selim I and Sulayman I (Suleiman the Great).
The defeat of Hungary (1526) of Mohács paved the way for the capture (1541) of Buda and the absorption of most of Hungary by the Ottoman Empire, Transylvania became a tributary principality, as Wallachia and Moldavia. Asian frontiers of the empire penetrated into Persia and Arabia. Selim I defeated the Mamluks of Egypt and Syria, held in Cairo in 1517, and assumed the succession to the caliphate. Algiers was taken in 1518, and Mediterranean commerce was threatened by corsairs, such as Barbarossa, who sailed under the auspices of Turkey. Most of the Venetian possessions and other Latin American countries, in Greece also fell to the sultans.
During the reign of Sulayman I began (1535), the traditional friendship, France and Turkey against Hapsburg Austria and Spain. Sulayman the judicial system and the turkish empire saw a flowering of Turkish literature, art and architecture. In practice the prerogatives of the Sultan limited the spirit of Islamic canon law (Sharia), and generally shared the conservative authority of the Head (sheyhülislam) Sharia law and grand vizier (CEO).
In a progressive decline, which followed the death of Sulayman, the clergy (ulema) and the Janissaries gained permission to use a deep and corrupting influence. The first serious blow by Europe to the empire was the naval defeat of Lepanto (1571, see Lepanto, battle), caused the Spanish fleet of Selim II, and the Venetians under John of Austria. However, Murad IV, 17 percent. temporarily restored turkish military prestige of his victory (1638) over Persia. Crete was conquered from Venice, and in 1683 a huge army in the Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa turkish surrounded Vienna. Relief of Vienna by John III of Poland and the subsequent campaigns of Charles V of Lorraine, Louis of Baden, and Eugene of Savoy ended in negotiations in 1699 (see Karlowitz, the contract), which cost Turkey Hungary and in other regions.
The collapse of the state has been gaining ground in the Russian-Turkish war in the 18th century. Egypt was temporarily lost to Napoleon’s army, but the Greek War of Independence and its aftermath, the Russian-Turkish war of 1828-1829 (see Adrianople, Treaty of), and the war with Muhammad Ali of Egypt has resulted in the loss of Greece and Egypt, the protectorate of Russia in Moldova and Wallachia, and the semi-independence from Serbia. Radical reforms were introduced in the late 19th hundred and early 18th. by Selim III and Mahmud II, but came too late. In the 19th century. Turkey was known as the sick man of Europe.
Through a series of treaties of capitulation from 16 to 18 century. the Ottoman Empire gradually lost its economic independence. Although Turkey is theoretically between the victors of the Crimean War, which emerged from the economic war exhausted. The Congress of Paris (1856) recognized the independence and integrity of the Ottoman Empire, but this event marked the confirmation of the dependence of the empire rather than its rights as a European power.
The Rebel (1875) Bosnia-Herzegovina, precipitated the Russian-Turkish war in 1877-78, when Turkey was defeated despite a surprisingly strong position. Romania (ie, Wallachia and Moldavia), Serbia and Montenegro was proclaimed fully independent, and Bosnia and Herzegovina passed the Austrian government. Bulgaria, made a virtually independent principality, annexed (1885) Eastern Rumelia with impunity.