Centuries before the Turks arrived, Jews were living in Anatolia, likely encouraged by King Antiochus III (r. 223-187 B.C.) who had controlled the eastern Mediterranean.

While the Ottoman Empire famously welcomed Jews fleeing the reconquista in Iberia in the the community has a much longer history in Anatolia and Thrace, stretching back to the period before the Common Era

The guild in Ottoman times can be defined as an association of craftsmen and tradesmen who dealt with the same products and who banded together for their mutual benefit.

Organizing trade: The ahis and guilds of Anatolia - While guilds in the Ottoman Empire might never have had the same independence as their European counterparts, they still had an important role and also shared many characteristics with Sufi organizations

Nedim, who lived at the beginning of the 18th century, was one of dozens of Ottoman poets who openly expressed their interest in persons of their own sex.

In the days of the Ottoman Empire, pederasty-like relationships were common between pre-pubescent boys and bearded older men. Though today it seems homoerotic, the relationship had a deeper meaning according to the mystic Sufis and their search for God.

The “Sahaflar” (used books) Bazaar, nestled in the shadow of Beyazıt Mosque, has a long and for the most part honorable history that can be traced to Byzantine times.

TASTE OF THE PAST - The ‘Sahaflar’ (used books) Bazaar has a history that stretches back into the days of New Rome, when the city was renamed Constantinople

The cry “Boza” stridently rings out on the streets of Istanbul during the evenings at this time of year. It is a drink with origins extending far back in the Middle and Far East.

The cry “Boza” stridently rings out on the streets of Istanbul during the evenings at this time of year. It is a drink with origins extending far back in the Middle and Far East.

Thanks to five remarkable men in the first quarter of the 18th century, the Ottoman Turks finally got their own printing press

Thanks to five remarkable men in the first quarter of the century, the Ottoman Turks finally got their own printing press

Doodling has been around for centuries, maybe millennia; at its simplest, it is defined as sketching aimlessly or mindlessly.

In a book recently published, through sketches and drawings, one catches a glimpse into the mind of a young Fatih Sultan Mehmed as a schoolboy with big dreams

The story of coffee drinking is a curious matter. The beverage can be dated to around 800 B.C.

Coffee has had a long, yet sometimes controversial, role in the history of this region. After several attempts to ban the bean, the Ottoman Empire gave into its newfound coffee culture

The Mevlevis, a mystical sect of Anatolia - TASTE ODuring the first half of the 13th century in Konya, a city in Central Anatolia Celaladdin Rumi - or “Mevlana” (our master), the name by which he is frequently known - met Şems-i Tabrizi a young itinerant dervish in search of a teacher.

[Ottoman Empire] The Interior of the Galata Mawlawi Lodge, Istanbul (Osmanlı Galata Mevlevihanesi)

Or so Sultan Mehmed II is supposed to have proclaimed overlooking the city from the roof of the Hagia Sophia following the conquest of Constantinople in 1453.

The Byzantium that is still with us

From ancient times before Islam it has been known that the tribes of the Arabian Peninsula had their own gods for whom altars or just stones were set up and on which they sacrificed animals.

The Ottoman sword - a cut and slash weapon

In “The Big Wedding,” one of the two main characters in the Turkish shadow play Karagöz is getting married.

Adultery in Islam and among the Ottomans

From the earliest days of Islam, a distinction was made between what clothing a Muslim could wear and what a non-Muslim could wear.

Daniel Valentine Riviere, Phanariot Greek Ladies, mid century The Reviere Family of artists and book binders where of French Huguenot Ancestry

For the Ottomans, the concept of ambassador as someone who was stationed in a foreign country where he represented his own country was late in coming.

The Ottomans occasionally sent missions overseas, but it was not until the late century that the empire began posting emissaries overseas on a permanent basis.

The break between the Eastern Orthodox Churches and the Roman Catholic Church is dated to 1054, although some believe the circumstances that led up to the rupture started nearly 900 years earlier.

The break between the Eastern Orthodox Churches and the Roman Catholic Church is dated to although some believe the circumstances that led up to the rupture started nearly 900 years earlier.

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