The Ottoman Empire and Early Modern Europe

By Daniel Goffman | Go to book overview

7
Achang ing station in Europe

For your Greek subjects of the island of Candia, and the other islands of the Levant, there is no doubt but there is some greater regard to be had of them, first, because that the Greek faith is never to be trusted; and perhaps they would not much stick at submitting to the Turk, having the example of all the rest of their nation before their eyes: these therefore must be watch'd with more attention, lest, like wild beasts, as they are, they should find an occasion to use their teeth and claws. The surest way is to keep good garrisons to awe them, and not use them to arms or musters, in hopes of being assisted by them in an extremity: for they will always shew ill inclinations proportionably to the strength they shall be masters of.1

Most historians have portrayed a post-Süleymanic Ottoman world in decline. Their evidence for such a downturn is principally military. It is often argued that the Ottoman navy never fully recovered either its power or its prestige after the débâcle of Lepanto (1571), and that the Ottoman army never rediscovered its fortitude and fierceness after the long wars against the Habsburg and Safavid empires that brought the sixteenth century to a close and engendered the stalemating Peace of Zsitva-törok (1606). Consequently, the argument goes, concession, retreat, and retrenchment characterized Ottoman history during the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries. The reality, of course, was much more complicated than this representation suggests. Particularly in the seventeenth century, many regions and sectors of the empire flourished economically; innovation and bureaucratization engendered an unprecedented political stability; and even militarily, the Ottomans enjoyed some notable successes.

____________________
1
Robert Pashley, Travels in Crete, 2 vols., 1837 (reprint, Athens, 1989); as quoted in Molly Greene, A shared world: Christians and Muslims in the earlymodern Mediterranean (Princeton, 2000), p. 44.

-192-

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The Ottoman Empire and Early Modern Europe
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Maps xii
  • Preface xiii
  • Acknowledgments xvi
  • Note on Usage xix
  • Chronological Table of Events xx
  • The Ottoman House Through 1687 (Dates Are Regnant) xxiii
  • 1 - Introduction: Ottomancentrism and the West 1
  • Part 1 - State and Society in the Ottoman World 21
  • Kubad's Formative Years 23
  • 2 - Fabricating the Ottoman State 27
  • Kubad in Istanbul 55
  • 3 - Aseasoned Polity 59
  • Kubad at the Sublime Porte 93
  • 4 - Factionalism and Insurrection 98
  • Part 2 - The Ottoman Empire in the Mediterranean and European Worlds 129
  • Kubad in Venice 131
  • 5 - The Ottoman—venetian Association 137
  • Kubad Between Worlds 165
  • 6 - Commerce and Diasporas 169
  • Kubad Ransomed 189
  • 7 - Achang Ing Station in Europe 192
  • 8 - Conclusion. the Greater Western World 227
  • Glossary 235
  • Suggestions for Further Reading 240
  • Index 252
  • New Approaches to European History *
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