Skip to main content

Full text of "History of Turkey"

See other formats

This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 
to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 
to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 
are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other marginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 
publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing this resource, we have taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 

We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attribution The Google "watermark" you see on each file is essential for informing people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 

at |http : //books . google . com/ 



University of California. 

aiF^T OF- 


R.6ceiTk\i Qctobfr, 1894. 
•accessions No. 5^/ f^. chss Nfi. 









-> r\ 





346 & 348 BROADWAY. 



Entsskd, according to Act of Congress, In the year ISSH^ bj 


In the CIerk*8 OfQce of the District Court for the Southern District of New York 





Selim n. — ^His Character — ^The Grand "ViQer, H<diammed Sokdli, 
Master of the Empire; — CoBceahnent of the Deatii of Sdiman 
— ^Military sedition — Weakness of Selim — ^The Rnssians oom- 
mence their Conquests — Joseph Nassy — The Island of Cypma— 
Its Soil, Climate, and Productions — ^The Turks besiege Nicosia 
and Famagosta — ^Heroic Defence^— Ca^ed by Assault — Cyprus 
falls under Ottoman Dominion — Religions Excitement against 
the Turks — Crusade tmder Don John of Austria — ^Naval En- 
counter—Defeat of the Turks and Destruction of thwr Fleet — 
Peace Negotiated by M. de Noaillea — ^Earthquake at Constanti- 
nople — Death of Selim IL . . . . «7 

BOOK xxn. 

Amurath III. — ^His personal Appearance and Education — ^Intrigues 
of his Mother to withdraw his Affections from the Sultana Sa- 
fîyé — Sokolli maintains his Post as Grand Vizier — His Efforts to 
naturalize the Sciences and the Arts in the Country — ^Makes 
Enemies by his Innovations — His Assassination — War with Per- 
sia — Sinan appointed Grand Yûaer — Opens Negotiations with 
Persia — ^Is banished to Mulghara in Consequence — Siawousch^ 
Pasha succeeds hhn as Grand Viziei^— Expedition of Othman 
against tho Persians — ^He Defeats them — ^His Reception on his 
Return to Constantinople — Factions of the Harem — Christian 
Churches at Constantinople turned into Mosques — ^The Greeks 
and Catholics redeem their Altars— Civil War between tiie 
Druses— Treasures brought by Ibrahim from Egypt — ^His Cruel- 
ties against the Christians of Syria— Military Disturbances at 
Constantinople— War witii Austriar-Conducted without Energy 
on either Sida— I>«***^ ^^ Amurath IIL . • • . ^^ 


BOOK xxm. 


CHance at the Ottoman Empire — Accesdon of llahomet IIL to tbe 
Empire— Massacre of his Nineteen Brothers — ^Ferfaad appointed 
Grand Vizier — Replaced by Sinan and afterwaiUs Strangled — 
Campaign of Sinan in Wallachia — Meets with severe Reverses» 
and is again Banished to Malghara — Lala-Mohammed snooeedf 
him-«At his Death Sinan is Recalled, but dies on the Eve of a 
Campaign he had Planned — ^His great Riches — ^Ibrahim made 
' Grand Vizier — The Sultan departs for Hungary — ^Erlan Captured 
by the Turiu— Battle with Archduke Maximilian— Total Defeat 
of the Germans — ^The Services of Cicala rewarded by being 
made Grand Vizier-^-Soddenly Diqtlaced, and Ibrahim Reinstated 
— Civil Disturbances in the Crimean-Michel of Wallachia soli- 
cits Peace — His Assassination — ^Further Successes against the 
Austrians — Militaiy Sedition at Constantinople — ^Mahomet HL 
goes to Adrianople — His Death there — ^Aocessicm of Achmet L — 
Revolt of the Janissaries and the Spahis — Achmet^s vigorous 
Action restores Authority— Peace of Sitvatorok, • . 104 


Monrad the Well-Digger sent with the Army to Aleppo— Rebellion 
Suppressed — Returns to Constantinople in Triumph — ^His Death 
— ^Nassouh made Grand Vizier — ^He cedes to Persia all the Dis- 
puted Provinces — Is Strangled — Cossacks Invade Moldavia^ 
Treaty with Poland — Religious Conflicts — ^Death of Achmet L — 
Mustapha Succeeds him — ^His Character— Total Unfitness to 
govern the Empire — His Deposition — Othman 11. proclaimed — 
Death of the Sultana Safiyé— Hostilities with Poland— Triumph 
of the Turks— Cruelties of the Sultan— Success of the Poles at 
Choergin, which led to a Peace— Othman determines to make a 
Pilgrimage to Mecca — Revolt of the Janissaries— Mustapha re- 
instated — Othman carried in Disgrace through the Streets— His 
Struggle with his Enemies — Death — Tumult — Conduct of Mus- 
tapha — ^The Eunuch Mahomed — Revolt of Abaza-Pasha — ^Mére- 
Houssein — ^Deposition of Mustapha — ^Proclamation of Amurath 
IV., 141 


The Sultana Koesem — ^Attempt against tbe Life of Schah-Abbas — 
His Reception of an English Ambassador — He causes the Death 



of liis eldest Son — ^Bekir's Govenunent of Bagdad — ^The City 
beneged by Hafiz — Surrendered by Mohammed, the Son of Be- 
kir — ^Bekir Imprisoned and Murdered — ^Mosonl laved by a foith- 
fol Dog — The Eonnch Mustapha— Rain of Abaza oommracmg — 
Hafi2 Marches against l^im^— Flight of Abaza — Mohanunod, 
Khan of the Crimea, deposed — Victory of the Tutars and Coa- 
sacks over the Turks — Af^araace of the Cossaek Tartars be- 
fore Con8tantinq>le — ^Hafiz beaiegei Bagdad — He is depoaed by 
the Army — ^Anarchy in the Camp — Hafiz restored to Command 
and saTes his Army — Sedition and Massacres — ^Massacre of the 
Janissaries — ^Death of Bethlem — Gabor — ^Assassination of Hafia 
— Seditions — ^Amurath's Vengeance — Bia Ingnikaèd aad Cruel- 
ties — ^Death of Abaza — Capture of Bagdàd-4)eath of Amurath 
IV., . . . 203 

Accession of Ibrahim — ^Expedition against Azof^Rebellion of Nas- 
souh-Pasha — His Dealii — The Grand Vizier, Kara-Mustapha, 
the Victim of the Triumvirate — ^Efifeminacy and Excesses of 
Ibrahim — ^Father Othmon — Yousouf-Pasha — Siege of Cydonia — 
Execution of Yousouf — Sultanzadi succeeds him in Command — 
His Death — Cruelties of Ahmed-Pasha— Revolt of Wardar- * 
AU-Pasha — Ahmed deposed by the Chiefs oi the Troops — Sofi- 
Mohammed — Death of Ahmed — ^The Sultana Koesem intercedes 
in vain for Ibrahim — Mohammed IV. proclaimed — ^Ibrahim 
Strangled — Conflict between the Janissaries and the Spahis — 
T^jnrannical Conduct of the Victors — Malik-Ahmed, sumamed 
the Angel — Plots of the Sultana Koesem — ^Her Death — ^Adminis- . 
traiion of Ahmed Pasha— Events of the Plane-Tree— The fleet 
destroyed by the Venetians — ^Koeprilu made Grand Vizier, «^ • 278 

BOOK xxvn. 

OSter restored by Koeprilu — ^Destruction of the Venetian and Otto- i 
man Fleets in the Dardanelles — The Court transferred to Adria- 
nople — Revolt of Abaza Hassan — ^His Murder— Insurrection in 
Wallacliia— The Fortress of Grosswardien taken— Death of Koe- 
prilu— Succeeded by his Son Ahmed — Troubles in Transylvania 
— Rupture with Austria — ^Victory of Neuhoesel — Conquest of 
Hungary — Peace restored — ^French Diplomacy— =-Siege of Candia 
—Its Capitulation— Treaty with France— Invasion of Poland- 
Battle of Choonm— John Sobieski^Death of Kiuperli, . . 8Sd 


BOOK xxvm. 

Kan-Mnitftplui— His Incapacity— Ibrahim defoated bj the Rna- 
fiant — ^Peaoe with Russia — ^Tekeli — ^AlHanoe between the Tniks 
and Hnngarians — ^Tekeli proclaimed Kng — ^Progress of the War 
with Austria — Siege of Vienna — Sobleski takes Command in 
Poland — ^His Soocess — ^He arooses the Cath<^ Powers, and 
Forms a Junction with Charles of Lorraine— Defeat and Flight 
of Eara-Mostapha — Ingrstitode of Leopold — Yiotoiy at Gran 
^Dealh of Kara-Mnstaph»— Dissensions in Poland— Dea^ of 
Sobieski— Ibrahhn-Pasha made Qrand ^\asier— State of Aflkirs 
in Htmgaiy — Pnnishment of Tekeli — Hnngary dedarod heredi- 
tary in the House of Austria— 'Màh<»net IV. deposed— Accession 
of Soliman IIL — Disturbances at Constantinople Capitolation 
of Belgrade, 879 



SsLiM, son of Soliman II. and of Eoxelana, was fbrtj-fiye 
years of age at the moment when the empire so long coveted 
fell into his hands. At first a faTorite without merit of his 
mother on account of his effeminate resemblance to her, 
afterwards a favorite without gratitude of his father on 
account of that very mediocrity which gives security to aged 
princes against the enterprises of their children, Selim II. 
was one of those men who by a dissolute course of life have 
been unfitted for the throne before ascending it. He seemed 
to have been formed in all things both by nature and educa- 
tion to exhibit, throng his pettiness, the greaUiess of his 
predecessor. The great achievements that still had issue 
in his reign, were but the consequences, the posthumous pro- 
longation, of the reign of his father. 

His countenance was as insignificant as his character ; 
the blue and bright eyes of his mother, but veiled habitually 
with the vapors of drunkenness, were the sole feature that 
recalled the beauty of Eoxelana. The narrowness of the 
forehead, the softness of the cheeks, the thickness of the 
lips, the veinous coloring of the complexion, the breadth of 
the neck, the retreat of the shoulders, the chub and waddling 
obesity of the figure, revealed a consummate specimen of 
those Ottoman Yitelliuses relaxed by debauchery, discolored 
by wine, and who are left but ihe desire of torpifying them- 
selves with the vile appetites of the table. Only, by a 


fortunate compensation of destiny this same laxity of body 
which took away all moral energy from Selim, deprived him 
also of all temptation to rule by himself The lassitude of 
his body seemed to extend to his soul. The effort even of 
an act of will would have importuned his weakness and dis- 
turbed his indolence. To deposit the government, as soon 
as he should have seized it, in the hands of a man who would 
dispense him from thought and action, was his most urgent 
ambition. To rule was, to him, to find repose in the supreme 
rank. By an accident, and by a happiness of the fortune of 
the Ottomans, the grand visier, Mohammed-Sokolli, in the 
hands of whom Selim was to find and to leave power, was 
a great man, capable of continuing the policy of Soliman 
after his death, and of disguisbg the insufficiency of his 


This grand visier, at the head of a victorious army of 
three hundred thousand men, and ascribing what language he 
pleased to the bier which he was conducting, was master of 
the empire. He might suspend events, prolong the inter- 
reign, sell the support of the army, dictate concUtions to the 
heir to the throne. He forgot himself, and only thought of 
meriting well of his country. A short and respectful letter, 
written under his dictation by the secretary of Soliman, the 
wise and learned Feridoun, and conveyed by the tschaousch, 
Hassan- Aga, a^^rised Selim of the death of his father. In 
this letter the grand viiier recommended the new Sultan to 
draw near to Constantinople to be ready to seize the paternal 
heritage. He undertook to conduct the army there before 
it should know of the death of its master. He conjured him 
not to come himself to meet the Janissaries at Belgrade or 
at Adriaiu^le, for fear of finding himself made in person 
the object and the sport of the seditious exactions of soldiers, 
too habituated for five reigns back to extort frx>m sovereigns 
in forced largesses the price of the empire. 


Hassan traversed with such rapidity Hungary, Bulgaria, 
Thrace^ the Black Sea and one half of Asia Minor, that he 
arrived the eighth day at Kntaïah, the capital of the govern- 


ment wherein resided Selim. This prince was abse^ ; h« 
was hunting at this moment with some of his favorites in the 
▼alley of Kara-Hissar, somewhat nearer to Constantinople* 
Without dismounting from his horse, upon reading the letter 
of Feridoun, he took, at a galloping pace, Uie route for the 
capital. His khodja or preceptor Atallah, his gnmd cham* 
berlain Houseïn-Pasha, his groom Kosrew-Aga, and his 
favorite Djelal-Tchelebi attended him, more impatient than he 
was himself for his omnipotence. The night of the third day 
after their departure from Kara-Hissar, they arrived unex- 
pectedly at Scutari, a suburb separated from the seraglio by 
an arm of the sea, of some three or four bowshots in 
breadth. They caused to be opened to them in the name of 
Selim, the country palace of the Sultana Mihrmah, who had 
so much lamented Bayezid, sacrificed to the ambition of 
Selim. It has been seen that after the death of this beloved 
brother in Persia, she became reconciled to Selim, upon whom 
depended thenceforth her whole fortune. 

Selim was astonished at the calm that reigned at Scutari 
and at the seraglio, of which he could perceive the doors, 
the gardens and the kiosks in the diade before him. He 
sent across the tschaousch Hassan, to notify Iskender-Pasha, 
governor of the capital, of his presence at Scutari, and to 
obtain from him an explanation of this stillness and this 
silence. Iskender*Pasha feared a snare in the message of 
Hassan. This governor had received from the grand vicier 
no formal notice of the death of Soliman, no order to pre* 
pare the city and the seraglio for the accession of a new 
master. A letter in obscure and enigmatical terms, intended 
to be understood by hints and half-words, had merely been 
addressed him by Eeridoun at the moment of the departure 
of Hassan for Kutaîah. Is^nder, an unlettered soldier, 
had ill-deciphered Uie ^ligma. Besponsibk to Soliman for 
the Uirone and the capital, apprehen<ting in this unexpected 
aj^aranee of the heir an usurpation upon the old age of his 
absent father, he hesitated between doubt and credulity. 
He wrote to Selim by Hassan that he was ignorant of the 
events of which he spoke, and that he had no order fi^m 
the grand viiier to open the seraelio to a new master. Selim 
replied that State events of this importance were never 
written but in symbolical language in order to remain illegi- 
ble to the intelligence of the vulgar, but that it was for him 
alone, the son and heir of Soliman, to interpret them 
Vol. III.— !• 


BoreMigidj. Dann^ iliia ezcbange of messages between ihê 
gorernor of the eapital and the new Saltan) the boetandH* 
basohi, abeobite intendant of the seragliO) apprised by the 
groom of Selim) sent the imperial barge to Sontari to carry 
the Saltan to the palace* Selim entered it withoat retinae 
and without noise in the night time. At the moment when 
he set his foot upon the threshold of the door which opens 
opon the sea in front of Scutari, the cannon of the castle 
of Leander, a small fortress built on the shoal of this name, 
between the two shores, arorised the slumbering capital that 
Soliman was no more. There was a rush to the seraglio to 
kail the new reign. 


A steed covered with imperial ornaments stood awaiting 
the Saltan on the beach at the door of die seraglio. The 
bostan^ji-baschi) according to etiquette, took Sdim under the 
arm to assist him in getting on the saddle. The hi^ groom 
Houseïn, an old companion of exile of Selim, wisbed to re- 
pulse the bostandji, as he deemed his morement disrespectful; 
but Selim, who remembered the usa^ of the court where 
he had sp^ his boyhood, said smihng to the aga of the 
bostandjis : " Don't mind that stranger, aga ; he has not been 
brought up like us in the seraglio ; he does not know its 
usages or privileges ; walk in peace before my horse, and 
show us the way across those gardens which I no longer 

The oapou*aga or chief of the white eannohs received 
him at the door of the palace ; his mster, the SolUna Mihr* 
mah, threw herself into his j^ns, bathing him with teara 
She brought him a present of fifty thousand gold ducats, which 
she had economised to offer him at the moment wh^ he 
should be in need <^ layishing heavy liberalities upon the 
court and the armv. The m^ti, the governor, the judges 
of the army, the defterdars, the mollas, the dignitaries of 
Constantinople kissed his hand. He visited the mosques and 
the tombs of his ûtth^s during two days, as if to do homage 
to God and to his ancestors for the reign which he was going 
to inaugurate upon their turbés. But the impolitic or sua* 
picious counsds of his courtiers at Kutaïah induced him 
to elade the counsels of the grand viaier. Instead of await* 


ii^ Ae mrmj at Coii8taQtiiK>pl0, he hastened to Belgrade te 
throw himaelf amid the seditions of the soldiers. 


The grand vizier had succeeded in concealing daring fifty 
days from the troops the secret of ihe death of Soliman. 
The army, believing that it was still commanded by him, 
marched in order around his litter, saluting at each halt the 
dead Sultan with acclamations. They were approaching 
Belgrade, and were encamped for the night upon the border 
of a forest of Hungary, when Mohammed-Sokolli, informed 
by a courier of ihe speedy arrival of Selim, gave vent amid 
the dîu*kness to the voice of the Koran-readers, invited 
secretly by him to disclose to the troops the death of their 
padischaL At the sound of these voices psalmodizing around 
the litter the first verse of the Soura for the dead : " All 
power ends, all men have their final hour, the Eternal alone 
Imows neither end nor death," the soldiers, communicating to 
each other the fatal news, broke forth in sobs. Pressing 
tomultuously around the ropes of the enclosure of the im- 
perial tents, they refused to raise the camp in order to weep 
at leisure their sovereign. " Comrades," said the grand 
vizier, mounting on hors^iack at the dawn to harangue them, 
'^ why do you refuse to pursue your march on the ground of 
wishing to exhale your grief ? Ought we not rather to chant 
verses of joy and felicitation that the s(ml of our padischah 
is entered into eternal bliss ? Is it not he who has just made 
Hungary the house of Islamism ? Is it not he who has 
loaded our religion, our empire and ourselves with benefac- 
tions ? Is it by seditious tears and cowardly lamentations 
that we ought tiius to testify our gratitude ? Ought we not 
rather take upon our heads his precious remains and carry 
them to his son and his successor, Selim, who awaits us at 
Belgrade to execute the last will of his father, and to accord 
you presents and augmentations of pay ? Resume then your 
»od spirits ; leave peaceably the prayers to be said by the 
Koran-readers and march." 

The army in solemn silence resumed its march as a pro- 
eesdon rather thwa as a victorious army. The grand vizier 
trembled for a premature encounter of the soldiers and the 
Sultan. The troops demanded loudly that Seum IJ. gi^ould 
oome to meet the coffin of his father beyond the i>^^\)e to 


reoeivo their oath to the new reign, mnd to gire than the 
lur^saes of the accession. Selim took offence mt these ex- 
actionS) which the grand vizier persuaded him, however, to 
now submit to, since he had come so rashly to expose himself 
to them; he feared that disappointed impatience might 
exasperate the troops to even revolt. The new advisers of 
the Sultan, who surrounded him at Belgrade, dissuaded him, 
on the contrary, from any such compliances, degrading, in 
their opinion, to his dignity. " Have you not already re- 
ceived the oath of the empire in the capital ? '' said they to 
him. ^^ What need then of a new profession of allegiance ? 
Does the army think that it alone has the ri^ht to decree 
the sceptre to its master? In the early times of the 
monarchy it used to be said that, to mount the throne, the 
Sultans should pass underneath the sabres of their soldiers. 
This was true then ; but now that the throne is a heritage 
and not an election by the troops, such reminiscences are an 
offence to the majesty of the sovereign." 

Selim then confined himself to awaiting the army upon 
a throne of gold which he had caused to be erected in his 
tent on the bank of the Danube, on the summit of a rising 
ground which slopes down towards the river underneath the 
ramparts of Belgrade. 

^^ It is thus,'' cried the grand vizier, confiding his fears to 
Feridoun, ^^ that inexperienced and irresponsible counsellors 
lose empires." 

Feridoun showed him a letter which he had just penned 
and which he proposed to him to sign, to demonstrate to the 
Sultan the peril of this conduct. " No," said the grand 
vizier, " I will sign no more representations, they are useless ; 
besides, how do I know even that I am still grand vizier, and 
is not the Sultan master of appointing another in my 
place ? " 


He succeeded, however, by his authority over the army, 
in keeping the soldiers till the following day in order and in 
silence. At the dawn of day, the hearse which carried the 
body of Soliman advanced, attended by a countless multitude 
across the plain towards the brink of the Danube. Selim, 
in mouminff suit, came forth at the head of a mute proces- 
sion from the walls of Belgrade, and walked on foot to meet 


the coffin and the anny. His precoptor Atallah «nd his head 
groom Houeeïn supported him by the arms. The two pro- 
oessions halted upon meeting. The Sultan raised his hands 
to heaven, and the muezzins chanted the funeral prayers. 
The viziers, the troops, the people of Belgrade who followed 
Selim, mingled sobbings with the murjoiur of the river. 
Never, since the funeral of Alexander, had the soul of a 
great man appeared, in vanishing, to have thus prostrated the 
soul of an army. Selim, not being known to those soldiers, 
did not venture to acoost them with the majesty whidi 
imposes or the familiarity which attracts. He returned into 
his tent and wrapped himself up in his invisibility. 

He was soon beset there by the murmur of those two 
hundred thousand soldiers; they left their ranks, and 
encouraging each other mutually to audacity, surrounded the 
tents of the Sultan. " Is this," said they to each other, 
" what we have been promised ? What is become of our 
former usages ? Where are the recompenses and the presents 
that are due us ? Ungrateful viziers, do you hope to elude 
thus the rights of those who give and retain victory and the 
throne ? Invisible Sultan, who thinkest to escape us behind 
that rampart of pusillanimoiis courtiers, we will find thee 
hereafter near the hay-cart." 

The meaning of this menace of finding the Sultan near the 
hay-cart was a seditious allusion among the soldiers to cer- 
tain precedents of the army discontented with the viziers. 
When the soldiers, on a march in a state of mutiny against 
their generals, desired to sow disorder in the column, and 
to give rise to a tumult for which no one would appear to 
blame, they availed themselves of the encounter, accidental 
or otherwise, of a load of hay which obstructed the road and 
gave them occasion to stop the march of the army, until they 
had been gratified in their exactions. 

The counsellors of Selim II., trembling lest the immi- 
nent revolt of the army should profane the very coffin of 
Soliman, had it taken off by night and conducted to Con- 
stantinople by a detachment of his guard. The grand vizier 
and the pashas, called next day to the council of Selim, con- 
vinced him of the necessity of yielding to the military sedition 
which they had meant to prevent in dissuading him from pre- 
senting himself so rashly to the soldiers before having dis- 
banded the army. The prince, convinced too late of the 
wisdom of the grand vizier, came forth from his tents, 

14 HmoBT or rxnxsr. 

received the o«tli, and gare tiie usoftl denttiom to all tlie 
corps of the army. The two grand jndges availed them- 
aelres of the ascendant taken bj the troops to ask him ra 
their name for the severe maintenance of the laws which 

Çroecribed the sale and use of wine thronghont the Empire, 
'his indirect allusion to the vice imputed to Selim himself, 
tolerated at Belgrade, was pnnished some days after at Se- 
mendria by the banishment of the two judges. 

The imperial cortege and the army drew up before Con- 
stantinople at the village of Halkalti to ffive time for the 
completion of the preparations for the solemn entry. The 

grand vizier dismounted at a farm which he owned at some 
istance from the village. The order and the silence of the 
army since leaving Beljmide left no occasion to suspect a rem- 
nant of resentment This calmness covered a conspiracy of 
the soldiers. The troops seemed to have the intention of 
shaking the htind that was about to lead them, in order to 
know its force or its feebleness. In the middle of the night, 
the inspsctors of the camp ran hastily to the farm of the 
grand vicier ; they apprised Mohammcd-Sokolli of the noc- 
turnal disorder which was the prelude to those of the day. 
Bands of Janissaries, by the light of torches, made of pine 
branches, sat in conclaves around tuns of wine from wnich 
they imbibed insolence and drunkenness. All the neighbor- 
ing villages wherein troops bad been cantoned presented the 
same symptoms of secret agitation. 

However, all appeared returned to order in the morning. 
The governor of Oonstantinople, Iskender-Pasha, the mufbi, 
the capitan-pasha, Pialé, almost as popular as Barbarossa, 
were come in great pomp from the capital, to kiss the hand 
of the Sultan and to escort him to his palace. The troops, 
assembled by their generals, defiled with the usual cry of 
long live the padischah 1 An innumerable multitude covered 
the plain, the hills and the house-tops to contemplate their 
new master. The Janissaries, in a compact column, cleft 
with difficulty the waves of spectators. Already the gates 
of the capital were entered, when a sudden reflux arrested 
the Sultan himself not far from the city walls. The viziers 
interrogated with anxiety the chiaoux, charged with the^ 
police of the ceremony, as to the causes of this slackening 
and this confusion of the march. *^ It is a wagon of hay," 
replied the chiaoux, " that obstructs the passage of the Jan- 
issaries at the height of the mosque of the princes." 


At tiiis word, a wéï known signal of preaeditatod tmat- 
ble, the generals and the viiiers ol^ the ranks with the 
breast of their horses and jnshed to the head of the c^omn 
to chide the Janissaries. ^' What is the matter, braTe oom* 
rades I " said at once the second rixier, P^tew-Pasha, nntil 
then beloved by the soldiers for his brarery ; " yonr insub- 
ordination is an insult to the majesty of your padischah." 

" Dost thou think then that in this place thou art still in 
Transylvania, imposing arbitrary laws upon thy soldiers ? " 
replied the mutineers, overturning him from his horse in the 
street, wherein his turban rolled, to the applauses of the pop- 
ulace, in the mire. The capitan-pasha, Pialé, sought to 
interpose his authority, theretofore inviolable, even to the 

" Is it not inûimous in soldiers to thus insult the dignity 
of the viziers who have led them to victory ? ". cried he 
indignantly. He was answered but by hootings. 

*^ What hast thou in ihj turn to say to us, old pirate ? " 
cried the soldiers ; and they pulled him likewise off his horse 
and tore his clothes. The aged Ferhad-Pasha, a veteran of 
two reigns, thought that they must respect his white beard ; 
he was knocked with the stocks of the guns under the feet of 
the horses. The aga of the Janissaries himself, adding 
action to supplication, knotted with his own hands a cord of 
eUk around his neck, to say to the soldiers : ^' I lua at your 
mercy, draw the knot, strangle your general, but respect 
your padisohah 1 " 

<< Ah I vile flatterer,'' cried a thousand obstinate voices, 
interrupted with bursts of laughter, ^ thou wouldst give 
us sugared biscuit in place of bread. But thou wilt Sius 
save 3èo treasures neither <^ the Sultan nor of the grand 
vixier ; and we will let thee see, in turn, the upset wagon 
of hay.» 

During l^ese disorders of the vanguard, Selim, anxious 
and humiliated, waited shamefully in front of ^e gate of 
Adrianople till it should please his soldiers to give him access 
into his capital and his palace. He ordered the grand vixier 
to satisfy at any cost the caprices of the troops. SokoUi, 
sick at heart from both the weakness and aie sedition, 
ordered entire sacks of piastres to be thrown to the revolted 
Janissaries. They then resumed their march and lifted 
upright the subverted hay-cart. They presently attained 
the gates of the serf^lio, rushed tumultuously iato the fin^ 

16 msTOftT or titbkst. 

court and burrioaded themadres there anew. They seoi 
from thenoe a depatation, aooompanied by the disarmed and 
outraged viziers, to Selim, who was shut out by their rebellion 
from his own palace. Selim, stopped before the mosque of 
the Sultana Khasseki, again yielded to all their exactions. 
The deliyered viziers remounted horse, the Emperor ent^^ 
the seraglio, swept by the waves of an unpunished sedition. 

The treasury was emptied for the Janissaries. The 
spahis and the other bodies of the army murmured in turn, 
and outraged the viziers for an equal share in the pillage. 
The grand vizier, who was spying the occasion of repossess* 
ing himself of his lost authority, availed himself ably of 
the gorged rebels to put down the clamor of the hungry 
claimants; he caused to be decapitated the chiefs of the 
spahis and hung three persons who made themselves tribunes 
of the populace. The treasures of the island of Chio, rav- 
aged some months previous by the capitan-pasha, Pialô, and 
presented by him to the Sultan, filled up this void of the 
treasury. Pialé, the son of a shoemaker of Croatia, ele« 
vated by the accidents and the exploits of sea-life to the 
rank of being son-in-law to the Sultan, was recompensed for 
his services in this sedition by the title of vizier of the 
cupola, that is to say, was authorized to take his seat in the 
divan, beneath the cupola, in front of the grand vizier, for the 
discussion of public business. 

Ali-aga Muezzinzadé (or son of the Muezzin) was ap- 
pointed capitan-pasha in place of Pialé. Mahmoud-Fasha^ 
surnamed Sal from the name of a Persian hero celebrated for 
his strength as a wrestler, received likewise the title oi 
vizier. Selim thus recompensed in Mahmoud the brutal ser- 
vice which the wrestler had done his interests in strangling 
with his own hands, upon the order of Soliman, the prince 
Mustapha, escaped through his vigor from the mutes of his 
father. Lala-Houseïn (or father Houseïn), the blundering 
counsellor of Selim who had taken him so fatally to Bel- 
grade, was removed by the grand vizier from the pers(m of 
the Sultan by giving him the government of Anato^a. 
Djelal-Beg, the favorite of Selim, more complacent to the 
grand vizier, was loaded with honors and with revenues by 
SokoUi, so as to interest him in maintaining this high digni- 
tary in the confidence of the Sultan. Sure in this way of 
his ascendant in the familiar council of Selim, Sokolli rid 
himself of all opposition to his policy in the seraglio. The 


minister of finance, Yasonf-Aga, who was wont to attack 
yehementlj all his measures, was seized by the grand yizier 
with his own hand at the issue of the council and dcHTCred 
to the executioner, who beheaded him under the archway of 
the seraglio. 

Sokolli reigned without obstacle. He negotiated and 
signed a glorious peace with the Emperor of G^many. He 
received an embassy from the Persians. This splendid 
embassy, which is described by the annalists of the reign, 
brought back to Selim the slaves, the arms, the horses and 
camels of his brother Bayezid, slain by them to please him, 
despite the laws of hospitality. A religious fanatic at- 
tempted the life of the Persian envoy, Schah Kouli, at the 
moment he was making his solemn ^try into the capital 
The assassin was tied to the tail of an unbroken horse, and^^ 
whirled upon the pavement till he expired. The presents of 
the Schah of Persia delivered by his ambassador, attest the 
marvels of Persian industry in the midst of the civil wars 
which were giving to and withdrawing the throne from the 
dynasties of that kingdom. Korans bound in gilt velvet ^ 
and shut with clasps of precious stones ; jewel cases full of 
rubies and pearls ; eight cups hollowed in massive torquoises ; 
two tents wherein the embroidery designed and colored pic- 
turesque landscapes ; twenty tapestries of silk inwoven with 
flowers, birds, wild animals ; nine foot-carpets of the down 
of camels torn from the womb of their mothers ; tent cur- 
tains dazsling like doors of gold and silver ; horse-saddles 
incrusted with precious stones; seven sceptres and seven 
sabres cased in sheaths of crimson velvet ; pieces of woollen 
cloth for the feet, so silky and so thick that a single piece 
made the full burden of ten men. 

An ambassador from Poland, a nation always fluctuating 
in its policy, which was courting the Turks to escape the 
Germans, the Russians, the Tartars, brought to Selim furs 
and fire-arms, presents of the north. Sokolli accorded the 
Poles what they requested of the Porte, to the end of de- 
taching them from the cause of the Hungarians and of the 
Germans. This grand vizier governed his master so despoti- 
cally, that the Sultan, having wished to elevate his old pre- 
ceptor Lala-Mustapha, to the honorary rank of vizier of the 
cupola, did not dare to mention it beforehand to SokoUL 
The Sultan convoked a divan on horseback in returning from 
a hunt, and excused himself timidly to the grand vizier to 


hftTiog appomied ame witkomt his adrioe, to so ki^ a dignitf 

of the SUte. 

Sokolli, faithful to the traditions of alliance with Franee, 
sent Ibrahim-Beg to Parb. Thb ambassador asked the 
king, Charles IX., for the Princess Marguerite in marriage 
for Prince Sigismond of Transjlrania, whom the Porte de- 
signed to derate to the throne of Poland. The month of 
September, 1569, saw reduced to ashes in a single night 
twenty thousand houses of Constantinople. Sokolli, sur^ 
rounded by the flames in a district whither he had hastened 
to oppose the i»rogress of the fire, was well nigh perishing in 
this vast furnace. The diligraice and the gold <^ this 
minister efilAced speedily the traces <^ this disaster. 

He founded at the same time at Adrianople, to the name 
of Selim, the marrellous mosque Selimleh, upon the plans 
oi the architect Sinan, that Turkish Palladio. The cupda 
of this mosque, 8U|^rted by pillars like that of St. Pete's 
at Borne, exceeds m height and in amplitude the cupola of 
Saint Sophia. Sinan, who regarded this edifice as his 
masterpiece, used to say himself that the mosque of the 
princes at Constantinople was but the essay of an appren* 
tice ; that of Soliman, the work of a finished journeyman ; 
but that the Selimïeh was the production of a great master. 
Four minarets, hollow obelisks, shot up their spires above the 
dome to heayen like radiations of a marble crown detached 
up(m the azure firmament. Three staircases, of whidi the 
spirals superposed and intertwisted succeed each other with- 
out ever meeting, allowed three muenins to move simul- 
taneously, from the threshold to the summit, and from the 
top to the foot of these minarets. The pillars, placed at a 
wide distance from the centre of the dome, and concealed 
in the walls, give to the cupola the appearance of an aerial 


But these structures were but the decorations of the 
reign ; Sokolli thought of the enduring strength and the pros- 
perity of his race. His genius had forestalled his age in the 
theory of political economy, that science of the wealth of 
nations. He saw this wealth in agriculture, in commerce, 
in navigation, that vehicle of international exchanges. Ho 
meant to make Constantinople, by industry, what nature had 


Biade it by âtmtton, the enirepât^ of Ana, of Europe and 
of Africa, the " grand scale" of the commercial unirerse. 
The highest eulogy which can be passed upon the memory 
of Selim II., is that he did not thwart Ûie views and the 
plans of his minister for the realization of his projects. 

Sokolli masked his real idea of civilisation, too advanced 
fpr his time, under the appearance of a political enterprise 
which flattered the popular prejudice and hatred of the Turks 
towards the Persians. He represented to the divan, and he 
diffused it among the people, that the sole means of a lasting 
triumph over the schism of Ali, in Persia, was to turn by 
way of the Crimea the natural ramparts of aie Caucasus and 
of Georgia which protect this empire on the side of the Black 
Sea, and gradually to surround Persia by the route of Bagdad 
on the one side, and by the Caspian Sea on the other. The 
national hatred responded with enthusiasm to these concep- 
tions of Sokolli. Attention then was turned to ihe north- 
east coasts of the Black Sea. 

The Eussians, a nation yet barbarous, emerged from the 
marshes of the Baltic to enslave and nationalize some tribes 
more barbarous than themselves in the forests of Muscovy, 
were menacing already to cut off the Turks from the route 
of Persia, of Tartary, and of the Caspian Sea. Become 
Christians at the beck of one of their Czars, Wladimir, 
fourth descendant of Eurik, their first chief, thev adopted 
through imitation and through vicinity the Greek schism. 
The Byzantine emperors sealed this conformity of religion 
by giving their daughters in marriage to the chiefs of this 
new people. The latter multiplied under shelter of tiieir 
frosts and their forests. They began to feel their strength and 
to expand towards the East, on the side of the sun, as their 
BBOWBj dissolved in spring, take their current from the decliv- 
ities that divert them into the Caspian Sea. Ivan Wasiliéwitz 
v., their Czar, contemporary with SeUm, had just character- 
ized this Eussian inclination towards the East by conquering 

* The WOTd <%)*, which is definitively naturalized in our hnainesa 
language, is a paronym of €rUrq)ât with the exact difference of the pre- 
position. The former âgnifies a fixed jdace of both arrival and departore, 
by extendon of the primitive sense which meant the thmg» so pl^ed, ^ 
as we say, " deposits." The term entrepôt merely adds to this idea tiie 
compUcation of such place or position being situated ôrfw«^ certain other 
«uroundingpositions. Its adoption into English is thus not on^^^ 
mate, but i more necessary 'm proportion to the higher complicatiotu- 

20 msTOBT or tubkbt. 

Gafan and Astrakan firom the Tartars, and tiras i^roaobing 
to the basin of the Crimea. 

The Don, the ancient Tanaïs, a river of the north, pre- 
cipitates itself into the Black Sea, after having farrowed 
Rtissia through a coarse of three thousand leagues. The 
Volga, rising in the same steppes of Muscovy, turns off in the 
middle of its course from the Black Sea, and discharges itself 
into the Caspian through sixty outlets. Between these two 
rivers, for a long way parallel, runs an isthmus of thirty 
thousand paces. In cutting this isthmus by a canal naviga- 
ble to large vessels, the Black Sea and the Palus Maeotis, 
which prolongs it towards the sea of Azof, would be made 
to communicate with the Volga, and the Volga to transport 
the Ottoman fleets and armies into the Caspian Sea, which 
bathes the northern frontier of Persia. This kin^om, in- 
vaded by sea and by land upon a side where it imagined 
itself inaccessible, behind the billows of the Caspian, as well 
as on the side of Arabia, would become a slave of the Turka 
Servitude befell it whence it expected its independence. 
The Bosphorus would have sent by two seas, by a maritime 
canal and by sixty river outlets, its laws to Ispahan ; but 
Ottoman commerce would have imposed more pacifically its 
monopoly upon the Oriental and the Occidental world. The 
products of Europe, sought in India, and the products a 
thousand times richer of India, sought at any price by Europe, 
instead of taking the long and perilous six months' circuit 
of the Cape of Good Hope, then scarcely discovered, were 
going to be exchanged from hand to hand by means of cara- 
vans and vessels in the Ottoman market of the Caspian Sea. 
The two hemispheres were obliged to traffic there under the 
tents, under the flag and the tributary tariffii of Selim II. 
and his successors ; the Ganges and the Indus found their 
commercial confluence with the Thames, the Danube, the 
Seine, the Ehine, the Tiber, the Tagus, in the basin of 
Turkish Tartary ; the Black Sea became the Nile of a new 
Egypt. It is inconceivable what opulence the execution of 
this plan prepared for the empire, and this opulence became 
at the same time a pledge of peace to the world. Sokolli, 
in this gigantic conception, showed himself as great an econ- 
omist as patriot. The days we live in evince sufficiently how 
important it was to Turkey and to Europe to repress from 
the beginning the flux of Russia towards the East. 

This idea was Boman in its origin : Pliny the historian 


ascribes it to the reign of the emperor Claudian, tlmt Selim 
of Borne. Seleucns Nicator had presaited it already to the 
Bomans ; geography presents it to all ages ; but Sokolli had 
simplified and facilitated it in using the Volga and the Don 
as two canals already cut to carry his fleets into the Caspian 
from the Black Sea. 

Sokolli succumbed, not under the magnitude of the 
enterprise, but under the prejudices of five thousand Janis- 
saries and of twenty thousand Turkish pioneers whom he had 
sent to the sea of Azof to cut the canal. The Khan of the 
Tartars, Dewlet Gheriùi, although tributary and ally of the 
Turks, feared for the independence of the Crimea, if the 
junction pf the two seas should thenceforth turn his dominions 
into a sort of highroad of the empire. He feared, besides, 
that-the assistance, always dearly purchased, of his Tartars, 
might cease to seem so necessary to the Sultans against the 
Bussians, from the day when the Don and the Volga, sub- 
dued, would permit them to transport armies into the heart 
of Muscovy, as Timour had done by starting from the same 
outlets. He made then secretly every effort to render un- 
popular in the camp of the Janissaries and of the Ottoman 
battalions the idea of the grand vizier. 

Beligious prejudice of itself seconded the malevolence 
of the Khan of the Crimea. The Mussulmans, hearing 
related by the Tartars that the days were twenty hours long 
and the nights but four hours in the boreal regions adjacent 
to Muscovy, persuaded one another that such a climate must 
be in contradiction to the precepts of the Koran, which 
commanded them to say the night prayer two hours after 
the setting of the sun, and the morning prayer at the dawn 
of the day. " How," said they, " in nights of only four 
hours long shall we find time to pray twice and to sleep ? 
An enterprise requiring of the Musssulmans such violations 
of the Koran is therefore reproved by God. The religion 
of the Prophet is destined only for the climates where his laws 
can be obeyed." Murmuring and discouragement shook the 
arms and the implements from the hands of the soldiers and 
the workmen. A column of twenty-five thousand Turkish 
and Tartar cavalry, who were marching upon Astrakan, to 
expel thence the Bussians, having been thrown back by the 
troops of Ivan, returned in disorder to infuse panic and 
sedition among the laborers of the canaL The desertion, 
âkvored by the Tartars, dispersed the camp ; the generals 


yielded to the soldiera ; thej embarked wiihoai orden for 
Gonstantinople. The tempests of tbe Black Sea seemed to 
league with the fanaticism of the soldiers to deter for erer 
the Ottomans from the yast idea of their great prime-ministor. 
Shipwrecks ingulfed on the return vojage a part of the 
fleet ; seven thousand men only reentered Constantinople. 


Mohammed-SokoUi, discouraged firom his project of 
uniting the two seas, to open to the Ottomans the route of 
Persia and of the Indus, {^oposed to try by the way of 
Arabia what the ignorance of his nation had caused to ûdl 
by \he way of Persia. He resolved to cut the Isthmus 
of Sues in order to pass the floets of the Mediterranean into 
the Bed Sea, and from the Bed Sea into the Indian Ocean. 
A general revolt of Arabia suspended fatally the execution 
of this work, which is still meditated to this day by the 
masters of Egypt and the commercial nations of the West 
The invention of railroads, that terrestrial navigation, makes 
it less urgent without making it less probable eventually. 

The causes purely local of the insurrection of Arabia Felix 
or Yemen against the governors of Egypt, related to family 
rivalries among the obscure dynasties of these countries, too 
imperceptible and too puerile to occupy history, But this 
insurrection threatened to extend to the rest of Arabia as far 
as Egypt Sokolli, to stifle it in the germ, and to remove at 
the same time a rival of whom he dr^ed the old ascendant 
over Selim, ordered Lala-Mustapha, the former preceptor of 
the Sultan, already sent into Anatolia, to raise in Syria and 
Egypt an army for the submission of Arabia. 

Some thousands of Janissaries formed the nucleus of Mus- 
tapha. Sinan-Pasha, governor of Egypt, instead of second- 
ing the enlistment of soldiers for the army of Arabia, 
opposed a calculated inactivity to the orders of the seraskior. 
Sure of pleasing Sokolli by ruining the fame of his rival, he 
accused Mustapha of laying snares for him at Oairo, of having 
tried to poison him in a cup of sherbet, of dreaming for 
himself the independent sovereignty of Egypt and Arabia. 
Sokolli, whether he believed in those accusations, or <mly 
feigned to believe, sent a tchaousch to Cairo to bear to 
Mustapha his dismissal, and the order to coine and justify 
himse^ at Constantinople. Sinan-Pasha received in his 

HI6Ï0ET or TUBKBY. 23 

place the i^tle of s^*askier and the oommaiid of theexpedition 
against Yem^. 

OthmanrOnzdemir-Pw^a, bom in Arabia, since grand 
Tizier, then a mere general of Sinan, went before the seras- 
kier into Yemen. In a suoeessfol and rapid campaign, 
Othman scattered the rebels ; he took by storm their fortified 
places. To increase his resources and to make himself more 
necessary in the eyes of the divan, he enrolled in his army 
some Arabian tribes and cavalry attracted by the popularity 
of his name in Arabia. Sinan, jealous of the triumphs too 
complete of his lieutenant, removed him, and appointed to 
the command of the army a Russian parvenu slave named 
Hassan-Pasha. Othman, indignant at the ingratitude of his 
seraskier, fled to Mecca with a party of his Arabian alHes, 
and crossing the mountains of Mesopotamia in disguise, he 
came to Constantinople to demand justice. 

Informed of his approach, the grand vizier, who dreaded 
his connection with Lala-Mustap£&, degraded Hke him for 
the «same cause, had him forbidden to enter the city. Oth- 
man erected his tents outside the walls in a nei^boring 
cemetery, at the gate of Adrianople, which the pestilence 
that rag^d at the time covered daily with fresh graves. It 
was incessantly visited, amid the snows and the rains of 
winter, to contemplate this great victim of the ingratitude 
of his master. 

Meanwhile, one day as Selim II. returned from the chase 
by the gate of Adrianople, Lala- Mustapha, a victim of the 
same intrigue, but who still had familiar access to his old 
pupil, directed, as by accident, the Sultan's walk alongside 
the cemetery wherein Othman was languishing beneath his 
tents. ^' Who inhabits so wretched a shelter against the 
rigors of winter ? " asked the Sultan. " It is the son of 
Ouzdemir, your faithful slave Othman-Pasha," replied the 
preceptor. " He who, under the reign of your father and 
under yours, has enlarged the empire by two vast provinces,* 
Nubia and Yemen, after having equalled in Arabia the ex- 
ploits and services of his father, is thus recompensed by the 
mgratitude of your viziers, and endures the rain and cold 
outside the walls of the city, where he is interdicted from 
sheltering his head." Selim kept silent and entered pensive 
the seraglio. The following day, a khattisherif (an order 
from the hand of the sovereign which annuls all contarary orders 
of the mmisters), appointed Othman-Paaha to the govern- 

24 mffFORT or tubxbt. 

ment of Bassora, bis natire eoantrj. Sokolli, widibg to 
represent to the Saltan the danger of appointing a man so 
popular to the govemment of a prorince oonterminoos with 
Arabia : " Take care not to tonoh him henceforth," said the 
Sultan with severitj. But Sokolli, more solicitous to guard 
ihe safety of the empire than to please his all-powerful 
master, changed on the very day the destination of Othman, 
and sent him to a less important government. 

Entire Arabia, vanquished or pacified by Sinan-Pasha, 
reoognized in 1571 the law of the Turks. Sinan at the head 
of his army entered Mecca, re-established the liberty of pil- 
grimage, and the three caravans of Syria, of Egypt, and of 
Yemen, celebrated the ceremonies of the Kaaba. Nothing 
now delayed at Constantinople the preparations of Sokolli 
for the expedition against Cyprus. The restoration of order 
in Arabia, the reconciliation with the Russians satisfied with 
their unpunished infringements on the Crimea, the peace with 
the Emperor of Germany, the friendship ?rith the Poles, the 
alliance more and more intimate with France, the prosperity 
of the treasury, the armament of the fleet, the impatience 
of the troops a long time idle, permitted, in fine, the grand 
vizier to bear with the whole weight of his patient policy 

Tinst the Venetians, and to wrest from them the kingdom 
Cyprus. This conquest, necessary to the empire, was 
besides, in the mind of the grand vizier, a judicious conde- 
scension to an old caprice of Selim II. 

While this prince, suspected by his father, an exile at 
Kutaïah or at Magnesia, was languishing in idleness, in dis- 
grace, and often in distress for money, the ordinary lot of 
the heirs or victims of the throne, at that time, in Turkey, 
he contracted with a companion of his youth a friendship 
and a gratitude which became baleful to the Christians of 

This man was a Portuguese Jew named then Joseph Nassy, 
&nd previously Don Miguez. He was one of those Hebrews, 
thrown by the dispersion of their nation among every people, 
and who were led by persecution and the dread of popular 
outrage to adopt the appearance of Christianity, which they 
detested in secret. The greatest crime of these persecutions 
is not only to make prescripts, but also hypocrites Joseph 
Nassy had the insinuating genius and the adroit graces which 
the necessity of their situation gives to men who can aspire 
to power only by servility. Bich already by commerce on 


leaving Portugal, he came a daring adventurer to seek at 
Constantinople to aggrandize and to ennoble his acquired 
wealth. Captivated to delirium by a Jewish young woman 
whose beauty and opulence ravished equally his eyes and his 
ambition, Don Miguez did not hesitate to abjure for love a 
Christianity adopted for convenience. He married this 
daughter of his tribe. 

His wealth decupled by this match, the sums he loaned 
with a political liberality to the ^andees of the court, the 
presents in jewelry which he lavished on the serafflio, the 
possession of the most renowned vineyards of Chio, of 
Cyprus, of Sicily, of which he used the products to corrupt 
the sensuality, then not too scrupulous, of the courtiers and 
of the young heir of Soliman himself, addicted to drunkenness, 
had brought him into familiarity with Selim. Like a man 
who could brave present disgrace for the sake of securing 
future favor, he followed the prince to Kutaïah. The 
intimacy of the young Mussulman prince and of the Jewish 
adventurer was such, that it used to be said at Constantinople 
that Selim was not the son of Soliman and Boxelana, but 
the child of a Jew sister of Don Miguez, whom an intrigue 
had substituted in the harem for a still-born son of the 
favorite. Money, pleasures, debaucheries, delicious wines 
of the Archipelago — all was common between the two friends. 
The fjQkvorite, in exciting the enthusiastic covetousness of the 
prince for the gold ducats and the savory casks of Cyprus, 
did not cease to represent to him this opulent island as the 
paradise of the voluptuous. One day that the wine of the 
sunny hill-sides of Limasol had intoxicated more than usual 
the senses and the imagination of Selim, the prince, throwing 
himself into the arms of his friend, swore that if he should 
ever ascend the throne of the Ottomans, he would give him 
the proprietorship of the kingdom of Cyprus, in acknowledg- 
ment of the delights which he owed his purse and his 
presents. * 

Don Miguez, who saw in the promise of the future Sul- 
tan, a sort of investiture, had the arms of Cyprus painted 
and hung up in his house with this legend : " Joseph Nassy, 
EoNG OP Cyprus." 

On the accession of Selim to the throne, Nassy, who had 

hastened to Belgrade to congratulate him, threw himself at his 

feet. Selim, in raising him up and embracing him, gave him, 

as a prelude to a gift more royal, the title of Duke of Naxos 

Vol. III.— 2 


and of the twelve Cjclades. By way of rent for theae im- 
mense possessions, the Saltan required of his friend bot a 
light tribute of two thousand ducats on the wines, which 
brought the new possessor of the Cyclades one hundred and 
fifty thousand ducats. The former prince, dispossessed of 
Naxos and of Andros, came to drag hb degradation and his 
indigence to Constantinople. 

But so many dignities and so much wealth appeared to 
the favorite but steps to elevate him to his vision, the king- 
dom of Cyprus. He did not cease exhorting Selim II. to 
extend his hand to that possession of the republic The 
Venetian ambassadors, who were aware of his credit, and 
who dreaded every thing from hb wealth, were tremblinff at 
the resolutions of the divan. All the young court of Sdim, 
Nassy, Lala-Mustapha, the capitan-pasha and his brother 
Pialé, inclined for the declaration of war against Venice. 
The grand vhcier and the mufti alone resisted this precipita- 
tion of the seraglio. They found neither the cause just nor 
the moment opportune. Venice furnished no grievance, and 
her naval forces anchored in her port might be able to cover 
with sails and cannons the coasts of Cyprus. 

The ambitious Nassy, whose opulence could purchase 
treacheries and crimes, corrupted, it is said, some pirates, 
and burned the arsenal of Venice by their hands. The 13th 
September a nocturnal explosion awoke the Venetians to the 
light of their arsenal and their fleet on fire. The munitions 
of the republic had exploded with the arsenal. The harbor, 
covered the previous evening with the armament and with 
the equipment of one hundred and fifty vessels, beheld next 
morning afloat but hulks and wrecks on the lagoons. 

This disaster decided the divan to dare alL After an 
imperious summons not to be accepted by a proud and free 
republic, the Ottoman expedition made sail for the king- 
dom of Cyprus. Selim confided it to those who had encour- 
aged it. His preceptor, Lala-Pasha, was appointed seraskier 
or general of the army of debarkation. The capitan-pasha, 
Pialé, commanded the fleet Iskender, beglerbeg of Ana- 
tolia, Hassan-Pasha, vanquisher of Arabia under Sinan, 
Behram-Pasha, governor of Caramania, and all the veteran 
generals of the wars of Hungary commanded the land forces. 
Three hundred and sixty ^lil in all, set out successively, 
in March and April, from Constantinople to transport tlus 
expedition to Cyprus, 


Ten thousand men debarked in passing on the hilly isle 
of Tine, and burned it from one extremity to the other, to 
punish it for its liberty which it succeeded in maintaining 
against the pretensions of Joseph Nassy, Duke of Noxas. But 
the inhabitants, fled for refuge to and invincible in their 
citadel, left to be conquered but their houses, their trees and 
their flocks. Their free souls respired anew their liberty 
after the passage of the Turks. 

The fleet, rounding slowly the advanced capes of Ana- 
tolia, between Maori and Rhodes, coasted along Oaramania, 
embarking at each harbor new reinforcements. These four 
hundred sails, forming a continuous column from Bhodes 
alons to Satalia, cast anchor the 1st August, 1570, on the 
beach of Amathonte, on the southern extremity of the island. 
The inhabitants, from the heights of the promontories and 
the mountains of the island, counted with terror the number 
of their enemies. 


The island of Cyprus, the ancient land of Chetim, of 
the Phoenicians and the Hebrews, the ancient Kypros of the 
Greeks, was worthy by its site, by its climate, and its fer- 
tility, of being divinized in fable as the abode of the cods 
and goddesses who were the symbols of love and beauty, those 
divinities of the senses. It took its name from one of the 
names of Venus herself, Cypris.* The gardens, the sacred 
groves, the temples of this goddess, of whom voluptuousness 
was the worship, covered its promontories. Amathonte and 
Paphos were the most famous. Their dnst is to this day 
formed of the wrecks of the pulverized sanctuaries, baths, 
fountains and statues of that feminine Olympus. Man, who 
almost everywhere adores what he dreads, adores also what- 
ever charms his brief passage here below and makes him 
dream of the felicities of another world. Nature herself 
had consecrated the island of Cyprus to sensuality and to 
happiness. This land was and is still the Eden of the seas. 
The waves, the earth, the sun, the air, seemed to have 
brought it into being, like Aphrodite, by an amorous harmony 
of the elements. 

♦ On the contrary, it was the island that gave to Venoa ^^^Ppella- 
tion, which it had derived from the source, less poeUc no aonot^ ^f ^ta 
mines of copper, latinicé cuprvan, — Translator, 


Like a floating cradle which the winds of Egypt have 
gently urged from wave to wave into the eastern extremity of 
the great Take of the Mediterranean^ the island, sheltered from 
the north by the peaked chain of the Taurus, and from the 
simoon of the deserts by the summits of Mount Lebanon, 
extends over a space of nearly seven hundred miles in cir- 
cumference between Syria and Caramania. The alternate 
shadow of those lofty mountains seems to extend itself in 
the evening and in the morning along to its shores, and to 
dye with a deeper azure the undulations of the sheltered sea 
which caress it with their foam. 

On the side which looks towards Syria, the island pro- 
longs, in declining to the level of the water, its promontory 
of Demaretum, as if it sought to insinuate itself into the 
deep gulf of Alexandretta, at the outlets of the Orontes, and 
to present a bridge to the caravans of Aleppo and of Damas- 
cus. On the side which faces Cilicia, the igle more elevated 
on the borders approaches by the promontory of Epiphania 
to the gulf of Satalia, that saline lake of Oaramania, en- 
chased in the forests of the Taurus. Cape Crommyon, a pro- 
tuberance of the body of the island between these two pro- 
montories, would seem to rival the asperities of the capes of 
the Taurus which it confronts. This cape is separated from 
the continent of Anatolia but by a sea-channel which the 
sail-crafb of the fishermen traverses in a summer night. 

Cape Crommyon is connected by continuous and gentle 
slopes with the (fentral and fundamental mountain of the 
island, the Cyprian Olympus, the least lofty but the most 
serene of the four Olympuses of that land in which antiquity 
seems to have hesitated where to place the dwelling of its 
gods. The poet Euripides makes the shrubberied and mur- 
muring valleys of the Olympus of Cyprus the bhrth-place of 
Venus Aphrodite, and the abode of the Muses, those intel- 
lectual Venuses who inspire men, for moral beauty, with the 
love wherewith the corporal Venus inspires the senses. 

To the right and to the left of this Mount Olympus, 
two chains of mountains, less elevated, running and declin- 
ing down to the extremities of the land, present like a fur- 
row their two slopes to two opposite suns. It is doubtless 
this protuberance of the dorsal muscle of Cyprus which 
caused the island to be compared by the ancient geographers to 
a fleece of wool lying afloat upon the sea, to a convex buckler 
that flashes off the beams of the sun, in fine, to a dolphin 


swimming and rustling upon the wares. In the plaoe where 
the Muses, Jupiter, Adonis wept by Venus, Apollo, and 
Venus herself, had their names, their shrines, their wor^ips, 
their pilgrimages, the Christian theogony came to substitute 
the names, the altars, the pilgrimages of apostles, of saints, 
of martyrs. 

Cyprus, under a perpetual spring, had a soil and a popula- 
tion corresponding to its site, to its climate, and to its extent. 
Com, the vine, the mulberry that feeds the silkworm, the 
olive which exudes the vegetable butter of the East; the 
bee-hives yielding a honey as renowned as that of Hymettus; 
the plane-tree, the cypress, the myrtle, of which the flower 
gives languor to the senses, opium which intoxicates them, 
all the plants that nourish them, all the fruits that quench 
their thirst. The melon, the peach, the pomegranate, the 
orange, the lemon, the apples, the pears of Cilicia, the dates 
of Syria, the flgs of Salamis, multiplied upon its hills or on the 
borders of its rivulets. The mariner, in approaching Cyprus, 
and contemplating the chSa along its borders all verdant with 
the shrubs that cover them like tapestry and drop their fring- 
ing filaments into the briny wave, imagines seeing a basket 
overflowing with fruits and foliage. 

The animals themselves seem to partake of the opulence 
and the serenity of its soil. Its oxen were chosen on ac- 
count of their great size, of their horns and of their white- 
ness for the sacrifices ; its innumerable doves, with bluish 
wings as if dipped in the sea, formerly consecrated to Venus, 
cover still with their clouds and attender* with their cooings 
the woods and fountains of the islands 

Thé mineral wealth was equal to the vegetable. The 
rocks imbedded precious stones, such as jasper, loadstone, 
rock crystal, opaL Mines of copper, a metal consecrated 
no doubt on account of its origin, to Venus, Queen of 
Cyprus, were worked there m the highest antiquity. Saline 
marshes, on which the sea in retiring left a white crystalli- 
zation like snow, furnished the island and the neighboring 
continents with tie salt of Cyprus. 


Its history was, like that of countries too envied by con- 

* To dispose to feel or inspire tenderness, compassionate or affection- 
ate. This common sentiment remains without a special term in onr 
clmnsj- English. — Trcmilator 


Îaerors and too enervated bj a precooions civilisation, saeb. as 
Sgjpt, Greece) Syria, Italy, full of yicissitades and of catas- 
tropnes. Nine tyrants, served each by an army of informers, 
divided it amongst them in its earlier historic times. 
Female slaves, who played on instruments and who were 
termed flattêresses, were charged to inebriate their senses 
and to inspire them with the languors produced by an effem- 
inate music diffused upon the air. The Egyptians had con- 
quered it from the Phoenicians, the Persians from the Egyp- 
tians, the Greeks from the Persians ; it belonged afterward to 
Alexander, then to the Romans represented by Cato ; devas- 
tated by the Jews under Trajan, it had fallen at the end of 
the seventh century of our era, into the power of the Arabs ; 
Baudouin, a crusader king of Jerusalem, and Bichard, king 
of England, wrested it from the Arabs ; Richard gave it in 
pledge to the Templars — ^tyrannical and plundering monks 
who ravaged and enslaved Uie people in the name of Christ, 
bom to emancipate them ; he then abandoned it to Guy de 
Lusignan, in exchange for the crown of Jerusalem; later 
still, the Genoese, merchants who bought and sold kingdoms, 
made the purchase of it from the successors of Guy. The 
Mamelukes of Egypt annexed it to their passing possessions, 
and the Venetians slipped into it beneath the shadow of their 

A Venetian woman of their blood, Catherine Cornara, 
had been wedded by the last nominal sovereign of the island, 
heir of the crusaders. The agents of the republic of Venice 
having poisoned the king and the son which he had had by 
Catherine Cornara, this widow was declared the daughter 
of the republic ; as such, she of course gave, in turn, her 
kingdom to Venice, her mother. In consideration of this 
free or this forced munificence, the Venetian senate decreed 
a magnificent tomb to Catherine Cornara in the church of San 
Salvator, and proclaimed this widow patroness of the re- 

The island, although disordered and depopulated by so 
many internal revolutions and so many vicissitudes of con- 
quest, resumed under the laws, under the protection and the 
maritime commerce of the republic, an agricultural and an 
industrial prosperity which made it the first colony of the 
West on the frontiers of Asia. It was to the Venetians 
what Cuba and Manilla are to-day to the Spanish, a richer 
and more happy home exterior to the mother country. 


Armies and fleets were kept on foot there by the republic. 
Its capital, Nicosia, in the heart of the island, its naval 
capitals, Famagonsta and Larnaca, its ports fortified with all 
the art of European engineers and with all the prodigality 
of the richest military republic of the West formed bulwarks 
to be compared to those of Rhodes, of Malta, and of Bel- 
grade, so long impregnable to the Ottomans. 

Dandolo, under the title of inspector, governed the 
island unskilfully. Hector Baglioni, a Venetian noble, was 
general of the troops ; Bragadino defended Famagousta ; the 
small number of their troops, which did not exceed seven 
thousand Yenetian soldiers, required them to be well covered 
by their walls and their vessels. 


The seraskier, whose four hundred vessels bore no less 
than a hundred thousand combatants, disembarked without 
obstruction this multitude and his artillery upon the naked 
beach of Limasol, at the point of the island which looks 
upon the sea of Khodes. The capitan-pasha, J^ialé, resuming 
instantly the sea, cruised through the whole summer season 
between Rhodes, Cyprus, and Satalia, in view of the three 
lands, to combat any Yenetian squadron that should sail from 
the Adriatic towards the blockaded island. 

Lala-Mustapha was a novice in the conduct of an army. 
Pialé advised him to attack Famagousta before Nicosia, m 
order not to leave a city and an army of the enemy between 
him and the sea while he should be besieging the capitaL 
The seraskier, confiding in his numbers, disdained this pru- 
dence, and marched wim his hundred thousand men upon the 
capitaL The entire island, submerged by this deluge of 
undisciplined Turks under a barbarous general, fell back 
into Nicosia, into the gorges and inaccessible table lands of 

Nicosia, a site ill chosen for the capital of a maritime 
kingdom, was seated on an elevation in the centre of the 

Its area, disproportioned to the limited population, made 
it vulnerable over a circumference of three thousand paces. 
It was a holy city rather than a fortified city. Three hun- 
dred and sixty churches or monasteries, as nnmerous as the 
days of the year, attested the superstition rattier than the 


prudenoe of the Elings of Jerusalem and of the Greek monks 
at that time masters of the East The Venetians, with more 
common sense, had demolished eighty of these diurches and 
oonyents to construct bastions with their materials. 

A population of a hundred thousand souls and ten 
thousand soldiers, Venetian, Cypriote, Italian, Albanian, were 
shut up in this capital They saw with terror, but without 
weakness, Lala-Mustapha, arrived at the foot of the hill, 
distribute his tents, his batteries, and hb hundred thousand 
soldiers around their walls. 

Six weeks of siege and five assaults repelled had raised 
their hopes ; they looked every morning from the height of 
their steeples to see if the vessels promised by the republic 
did not make their appearance on the horizon of Khodes or 
of Candia. They saw but the four hundred sails of the 
capitan-pasha nearing the beach of Limasol, and landing a 
reinforcement of twenty thousand Turks to swell the hosts 
of the seraskier. 

The arrival of these twenty thousand men in the camp 
of Mustapha, was the signal for a new general assault. It 
was the 9th November, 1570. The storming awaited but 
the dawn of the day. Before the twilight, ^irty thousand 
Janissaries had carried, by dint of men, the principal 
bastions of the city. The defenders, wounded or preoipi- 
tate<l from the battlements, had fallen back into the barricaded 
streets in the heart of the city. Their bravest officers were 
dead beneath the sabres or the balls of the Turks. The 
proveditore Dandolo, the archbishop, his clergy, and the 
principal magistrates, had taken refuge in the palace of the 
government, of which the walls soon tottered before the 
closely-planted batteries. The first Cypriote parliamentaries, 
who came as suppliants towards the breaches to ask for ca- 
pitulation or mercy, were swept down without other answer 
than grapeshot and death. The perfidious Dervish-Pasha 
passed over their bodies at the head of a column of six 
thousand Jamssaries and of six cannons, which dashed in 
the doors of the palace. He had seized an Italian monk, 
and had charged him to go and offer to the besieged in the 
castle their life and their honor, on condition of the silence 
of their artillery. The monk came out with the capitulation 
signed in his hand. Dervish-Pasha and his soldiers rushed 
through the door opened for the monk, and tearing the 
oapitiUation, massacred the Venetians. Dandolo himse& fell 


by the sabre of Denrish^Pasha ; his blood at least washed 
out his shame. 

The women, fled for refuge upon the terraces of the 
palace, fought until death amid the smoke and flames which 
began to Mndle their garments. The mothers, bef[>re pre* 
cipitatiuff themselres from the height of the battlements, 
poniarded their daughters to save at least the liberty and 
the chastity of those virgins from the servitude ana the 
pollution of the soldiers. One of them went the length of 
killing even her son, a boy of extraordinary beauty. " No,*' 
she cried, in plunging the knife in his throat, " thou must 
not satiate like a slave the brutalities of our assasmns.*' She 
then slew herself upon the body of her child. 

Twenty thousand men, women and children, precipitated 
from the windows and the terraces of the houses oroken into 
or set on fire, ensanguined in a few hours the streets of 
Nicosia. The vessels of the Turks, which lay at anchor in 
the harbor to receive the spoils, nearly sunk beneath the 
weight of the slaves, the furniture, the treasures piled up by 
the victors upon their fleet. The riches in gold accumulated 
in the churches and the palace, are estimated-at some millions 
of ducats. 

The heroism of a Greek woman, embarked in the ad- 
miral's vessel to be carried into slavery at Constantinople, 
deceived the cupidity of the vanquisher. At the moment 
when the vessels of the squadron, surcharged and crowded 
against each other in the narrow port, were weighing anchor, 
when the flames of the city on fire illuminated for the last 
time the shores of her country to her eyes, this woman 
rushing, torch in hand, upon the deck, kindled the already 
unfurled sails of the vessel, to perish at least in avenging 
her religion and her race. The flame, fanned by the land- 
breeze and redoubled by the explosion of the powder maga- 
sine and of the guns, ran like lightning from one vessel to 
another, forcing the sailors to precipitate themselves from the 
decks into the sea, to escape from that inextinguishable 
furnace. The vessel of the grand vizier and the other men- 
of-war were blown to fragments by the explosion of their 
powder magazines ; the rest burned and sunk slowly in the 
night, carrying down with them into the sea the noble women 
and daughters of the island enchained upon their decks. 

The treasury of the republic embarked upon these 
Tessels, in sequins of Venice, was ingulfed totally with 
Vol. IIL— 2» 


the hulks beneath the waves. Turkish divers tried in rain 
to follow it with the eye into ^he depths of the sea. The 
billows of the sea of Ojpros roll sinoe that tragic night 
upon the sand-embedded carcasses of the vessels that contain 
the price of so many fruitless crimes. The spot is well 
known ; there is seen from time to time to rise to the sur- 
face of the harbor some splintered fragments of this vast 
wreck detached by tempests from the timbers of the vessels ; 
but all efforts have hitherto failed to sound the hulks so bm 
to reach the treasures. 

In our days, some English adventurers, tempted by the 
fame of these treasures, have offered the Turks to share 
them with them, on condition of raising them at their own 
expense ; but the sea seems to refuse to give up to men the 
price of so many indignities and so much blood. 


Lala-Mustapha, intoxicated with his triumph, sent before 
him the severed head of tho proveditore Dandolo to Braga- 
dino, commander of Famagosta, the second city of the island, 
to summon him, by terror, to open his gates. Bragadino 
bore in his heart the desperate courage of an entire people, 
and in his intrepidity the safety of Cyprus, if the Venetian 
senate had seconded worthily its general. The hundred and 
twenty thousand soldiers of Mustapha and the countless 
sails of Pialé only exalted his courage to the level of his 
danger. The entire autumn and winter saw the fruitless 
stormings of Mustapha fail against the ramparts, pulverised 
but still erect, of Famagosta. 

Cyprus, confident in her hero, heard several times on the 
side of Khodes the cannons of the fleets of Venice trying 
to open a way through the fleets of the Turks. Two thou- 
sand defenders sent from Balmatia, and fifbe^ hundred men 
from the island of Candia, succeeded in forcing the harbor 
of Famagosta and introducing reinforcements, provisions and 
mimitions into the city. 

Selim impatient, the grand vizier irritated, rebuked the 
slowness of the siege. Lala-Mustapha, mortified, sent them 
the heads of the generals and of the admirals upon whom 
he threw the shame. Forty thousand fresh miners and 
sqldiers passed in spring from the coast of Caramania to the 
shores of Cyprus. The rocks of Famagosta, pierced by a 


hundred thousand arms, opened to the Turks trenches so 
broad and so deep that cayalrj could pass beneath their 
vaults. Batteries of eighty pieces of cannon, of which the 
calibre equalled those that battered Constantinople and 
Rhodes, vomited night and day huge blocks of granite 
against the ramparts. 

Bragadino, resolved to bury himself beneath the ruins, 
sent out of the city all the inhabitants who were starving 
uselessly the garrison. This people, tottering with inanition, 
appeared one morning as suppliants before the Turks ; the 
Ottoman generals, affected by so much misery, let them 
diffuse themselves, to seek their sustenance among the 
G-reek villages of the island. Bragadino, now free in his 
resolutions, saw with indifference the Turkish mines explod- 
ing one by one beneath his bastions. Every breach thus 
opened in his walls became the grave of the assailants. 
Cannons cast beneath his eyes supplied the place of the 
stone bulwarks. The narrow area of Famagosta presented 
every where but mounted guns. The chief imparted to his 
ten thousand soldiers a single soul. The distant signals of 
the galleys of Venice, which they descried from time to 
time on the sea of Candia, seemed to promise them a speedy 
deliverance ; but this hope vanished as the days rolled by. 
The walls were crumbled to the foundation into the ditches ; 
the Venetians, compressed within a second enclosure con- 
structed in earth, were awaiting until the new subterranean 
mines, of which they heard the excavation beneath their 
feet, should ingulf them in a sepulchre of fire. They had 
now powder to last them but for three days. They would 
surrender to the Ottomans but a mound of rubbish soaked 
with blood. 

The Ottomans appeared themselves to pity so much 
useless heroism. Negotiations were opened on the breach. 
The kyaya of the seraskier and the aga of the Janissaries 
entered the place under a white flag, and remained as 
hostages of the safety of the Venetian parliamentaries. Two 
nobles of Venice presented themselves, under these securities, 
at the tent of Lala-Mustapha ; they were received with the 
honors due to their courage. The seraskier made them sit 
on his divan ; the capitan-pasha invited them to a festival 
of peace. A written capitulation assured to Bragadino and 
his troops their life, their arms, their property : those of the 
inhabitants who should wish to remain on the island sub- 


mitted to the dominion of the Saltan ; in fine, yeiseb to 
toansport the others to Oandia. 

Three days were sufficient to evacuate Famagosta and to 
embark upon the vessels the Venetian troops, with the ex- 
ception of the superior officers who presided on land over 
the delivery of the posts and the embarkation of the soldiers. 
The third day, in the evening, Bragadino repaired to the 
tents of the seraskier to take leave of that oommander-iur 
chief and to give him the keys of the deserted city. The 
general was accompanied by Louis Martinengo, a consummate 
engineer who had presided over the defence, by Bagnioli, by 
Quirina, Venetian noblemen, and by forty select soldiers, his 
escort of honor. Mounted on the last horse remaining alive 
in his army, dressed in the purple robe of the senate of 
Venice, and having borne above his head by a Moor the red 
parasol, the emblem of supreme authority in a governor of a 
fortress, Bragadino advanced with confidence towards the 
tents, an object of respect to the vanquishera The reception 
of Lala-Mustapha was becoming, and the conversation ami- 
cable; but this dissimulation covered vengeance. Lala- 
Mustapha could not pardon the hero for having retarded by 
fifteen months his triumph, and compromised at Constan- 
tinople his credit and perhaps his head. He wished to offer 
to Selim an excuse in the shape of blood. 

Some historians of the catastrophe of Cyprus assign as 
motive for the perfidy of Mustapha, an infamous passion 
that sprung up in his soul at the sight of the young Antonio 
Quirini, a beautiful youth of a feminine countenance, who 
accompanied Bragadino at this audience. The brutality of 
some depraved Ottomans, since the conquest of Constan- 
tinople, by the unnatural vices of the G-reeks, only justifies 
too well this odious supposition. The unexpected and obsti- 
nate exigency of the seraskier gives it a motive. 

" What guarantee wilt thou give me," said he to Braga^ 
dino, about to withdraw, " that the vessels of the Ottomans 
which I lend thee to take to Candia thyself and thy soldiers 
will not be retained by thy republic ? " " The capitulation," 
replied Bragadino, astonished, " mentions none but my word." 
" Well," rejoined the seraskier, " I require that thou deliver 
me as hostage this young man, who will answer by his head 
for thy fidelity." 

Bra^dino blushed, and was indignant at a cowardice 
proposed so infSunously to a man who preferred with so much 


glorj for two years back, honor to life. Tho c(nilereiiO0 
became exasperated by recriminations and insults. Lala- 
Mustapha reproached with reason the Venetians of Famagosta 
-with haying immolated the year preyious, in full peace, 
fifty Mussulman pilgrims, oast by a tempest on their island 
and sacrificed by aie Christians. This too real and too bloody 
remembrance seemed to require of him some dreadful re^ 
prisais ; he made a sign to the executioners to cut off the head 
of Antonio Quirini, the innocent cause of the altercation, of 
Martinengo and of Baglioni. Their heads instantly rolled 
upon the carpet. 

The crimes of il^agadino were to haye a slower torture. 
Mustapha had him mutilated of the nose and ears, and 
ordered him to be conducted in this plight cm board the flag- 
ship of Rhodea There, by a refinement of torture, induced, 
say the Ottoman historians, by a punishment of the same 
nature inflicted upon Turkish prisoners under the goyernment 
of Bragadino, he was hoisted to the yard-arms, plunged from 
this gallows into the sea, rehoisted and again replunged by a 
derision which seryed to prolong his consciousness and agony. 

Brought back to the shore six days after, he had fixed 
upon his shoulders a yoke charged with two baskets filled 
with stones, which he was forced to carry up upon the bastions 
of the city, to the end of thus rebuilding for the seryice of 
the Turks the walls which he had defended against them. 
Each time that he passed before the seraskier, present at his 
ignominy, Bragadino was obliged to prostrate himself before 
his executioner. At last, conducted to the square in front 
of his own palace, the unfortunate general of Venice was 
tied to the post used for whipping slayes, and flayed alive. 
" Where then is thy Christ ? " said the executioners to him 
in raillery, " why dost thou not call him to thy aid ? " The 
impassable martyr did not turn his thoughts from God to 
reply, but continued to recite aloud the psalm : " Ham pity 
on me, Lord I " and as he had arrived at the yerse where 
tiie psalmist delivers up his soul to God he expired. 

This torture of eight days did not yet satiate the ferocity 
of Mustapha. He hM l^e body of Bragadino quartered, 
and exposed one of the four members upon each of the four 
bastions of Famagosta. The skin of the bust, stuffed with 
hay and tied derisively on the back of a cow, was marched 
through tiie city and through the camp ; then hung anew t6 
the yard-arm of a galley, then packed in a ease of cypres» 

38 mcrroBT of txtbkky. 

wood with the heads of Martinengo, of Baglioni, of Quirini 
and of Bragadino himself) and sent a present to Selim bj 
his savage preceptor. The mannikin, covered with the skin 
of the champion of Cypress, exposed at Constantinople in 
the bath of the Christian shives, was stolen from the guardians 
by the piety of some Venetian slaves and restored, with the 
sknll, to the senate of his country, where the remains of the 
hero repose in a marble urn beneath the vaults of the Vene- 
tian Pantheon of Saint John and Saint Paul. 

The crimes against good faith, against humanity, against 
nature, of this ferocious preceptor of the Sultan were lost 
amid the reports of all the crimes of State and all the crimes 
of religion that spread consternation, in this sanguinary 
century, through Europe and Asia. It was the century 
wherein Ivan the Terrible martyrized his subjects in Russia 
with refinements of torture beyond the imagination of Nero ; 
wherein Charles IX. in France ordered piously the Saint 
Bartholomew; wherein the vanquishers of the fortress of 
Wittenstein, valiantly defended, spitted the commander, a 
prisoner of war, on the blade of a lance, and roasted him at 
a slow fire amid the applauses of the army ; wherein the 
Spaniards instituted in the Inquisition a tribunal of fire to 
purify the faith. The shock of races, of religions, of schisms, 
of arms, had stunned the heart of humanity, and leaves to 
history no other justice to administer in such cases than the 
universal execration of l^ose atrocities. 


Lala-Mustapha, the Torquemada of Cyprus, left alive, 
of all the heroic defenders of Famagosta, but Henry Martin- 
engo, nephew of the illustrious engineer of this name. 
Instead of killing him, he was mutilated, and was condemned 
to serve as slave and as eunuch in the palace of the grand 

Thus fell under Ottoman dominion this delicious kingdom 
of Cyprus, which conquerors and nature had so long disputed 
with each other ; the latter to make it the ^rden of the 
East, the others to make it the sepulchre of its flourishing 
population. The Ottomans derived from this conquest but 
a gratification of pride to their arms and of hatred for their 
cruelty. The island, under their clumsy administration, 
never recovered from this disaster. The Venetians lost in 


it the most prosperous of their colonies ; the Turks gained 
but a sterilised land and a population exhausted by war : 
the change was ruin to all parties, of which soUtude was the 
sole heir. 

This conquest cost the yanquishers fifby thousand men, 
and five hundred thousand to the vanqubhed. This kingdom, 
of which the Romans had made a present to the queens of 
Egypt, Arshioë and Cleopatra, became a farm of the grand 
viziers ; its revenues were appropriated subsequently to the 
household of the Sultanas Y alidé, mothers of the reû 
sovereigns. An empire became the appanage of a privi 
slave of the seraglio. 


The fall of Cyprus and the martyrd<Mn of its defenders 
rung through Europe. The barbarity of Lala-Mustapha 
rekmdled national and religious hatred against the Turks. 
The Pope, the national chief of Christendom, fomented by 
all his efforts a lea^e of the Italian, the Spanish and the 
French, to avenge the shame and the blood of Cyprus. The 
grand vizier SokoUi foresaw and prevented it. He felt more 
uneasy than happy at the ascendency which the expedition of 
Cyprus had restored to Lala-Mustapha, his secret enemy. 
He had hoped for his reverses rather than for his triumpL 
He set himself to render Lala-Mustapha less conspicuous 
and less necessary, by reconciling promptly the empire with 
the republic of Venice. 

France appeared the power most interested in dissolving 
a Christian coalition which could not but politically profit 
the house of Austria. He charged the ambassador of 
France to go to Paris to propose the king to be the arbiter 
of peace between the Ottomans and the Venetians. The 
ambassador was requested by Sokolli to pass through Venice, 
to make indirectly to the senate, by the way, the' first insin- 
uations of peace with the republic through the mediation of 
his court. 

The senate of Venice dreaded more the ascendency of a 
naval coalition of the West in the Mediterranean, than it 
detested the Turks. It hastened to send a confidential 
ambassador to Constantinople to prelude the negotiations. 
This envoy, James Ragazzoni, conferred secretly with the 
grand vizier at Constantinople, while the legate of the Pope, 

40 msTOBT OF Txmtxr. 

Cokmna, was conferring at Venice with tbe eenat^ about the 
part of the republic in thccoalition against the Turks. 

France and the grand yixier had not time to defeat the 
efforts of the Pope, of Spain and of Austria at Yenice* 
The popuUir cry against the devastation of Oyprus prevailed 
over the cautious policy of the senate \ the Catholic league 
was signed at the end of 1571 between Spain, the Pope and 
Yenicei to humble the Ottoman power in the Levant The 

general armament was fixed at two hundred vessels, at two 
undred galleys, at an army of debarkation of fifty thousand 
men and five thousand cavalry. The king of Spain, as the 
most powerful and the most zealous of the allies, charged 
himself with half the expenses of the war ; Venice with a 
third ; the Pope with a sixth ; the generalissimo was to be 
appointed by Spain. Messina, in Sicily, was the port of the 
coalition and the point of departure of the confederates. 
A high mass, celebrated with all the military and religious 
pomp of the epoch, set the seal to the confederation. 

The ambassador of France, who repassed by Venice in 
returning to Constantinople, essayed vainly to detach the 
republic from an alliance with powers who were less actuated 
by the desire of avenging the Venetians than of dominating 
them in their own seas. The statesmen understood the 
ambassador, but the people only listened to the preachers 
of the crusade. For the thirteenth time since the appearance 
of the Turks in Surope religious antipathy raised against 
t^em the West. 

The Godfrey de Bouillon of this new crusade seemed to 
have been formed by nature, by politics, and by glory, to 
infuse from a high station soul, genius and vigor into this 
coalition. He was the last of the knights of the West, who, 
by birth, by adventures and by heroism, resemble the heroes 
of fable, of romance and of poetry. This generalissimo of 
the naval crusade was Don John of Austria. 

There lay upon his origin a transparent veil which history 
has lifted only in our day. 


Charles V. had not only the genius, but also the heart of 
a great man, that is to say, hungering for glory and thirsting 
for love. Six years after having lost his wife, whom he loved 
faithfully in her lifetime, and whom he idolized in his very 

BI8T0RT or T17BKET. 41 

memoTjf he was taken with one of those melaneholies which 
are left in hearts made void by the eternal absence of those' 
who were beloved — avoids which cannot be filled up except 
by religion and by love, those two infinitudes of the souL 
It was subsequently no other than one of l^ose fits of melan- 
choly that made him feel a void even in the possession of 
universal monarchy, and drove him to renounce the throne in 
order to feed his pious sadness in the monastery of Saint Just. 

While he resided in 1545 at Katisbon, and was thence 
governing so many kingdoms, from Tunis to the confines of 
Hungary and to the mouths of the Scheld, he loved, 
with a mysterious and chivalrous passion, Barba de Blomberg, 
a German lady of noble race, whose pure beauty and tender 
soul recalled to him thp companion of his early years. It 
was rather sadness than passion that gave birth to and at 
first nourished the flame of love between these two hearts. 
Barba de Blomberg had one of those voices which thrill to 
even tears the memories that slumber in the t<Mnb of the 
heart. Charles, who ha^^ned to hear her in the festivities 
of Batisbon, felt himself rescued from his languors by a still 
stronger emotion. Barba de Blomberg was invited honor- 
ably to his court and admitted to the familiarity of the king, 
to divert (say the memoirs of the time) the melancholy of 
the prince by song. 

Don John was bom the 24th FelH*uary, 1546, of these 
loves. This birth was k^t mystically secret. Charles V. 
had too mudi scruple for his own reputation, and above all 
for the reputation of his mistress, and loved her too much to 
dishonor her by his love. The infisuit, stolen by a confidant 
from the mother, nursed in Germany under a borrowed name, 
then carried into Spain by his nurse, was brought up until 
his adolescence remote from the eyes, but near to the heart 
of Charles V. 

When this prince, by one of those lassitudes which some- 
times seiae the happy under ike weight of their very happi- 
ness, resolved to abdicate the empire to aspire only to the 
celestial kingdom, and shut himself up in the solitude of 
Saint Just in 1566, the child was in the care of the equerry 
Quexada, to whom Charles V. acknowledged that he was its 
father. Quexada was charged to bring up and to form young 
Bon John with all the care comporting with the blood that 
flowed in his veins, but without ever letting his pupil surmise 
Uiat he was the son of the master of Europe. 


The faithful sénritor at first confided the mysterious 
infant to a poor fiddler of the village of Leganes near 
Madrid. He here fortified his body in the sober and the 
laborious life of the peasantry of Castile, and the curé of 
the village had given him the instructions common to all the 
other children of the country. When Don John had attidned 
his ninth year, Quezada took him from Leganes and pre- 
sented him to his wife, Madeleine d'Ulloa, saying to her as 
sole explanation of the guest thus introduced into the family : 
" Here is a page whom I bring you ; he is the son of an 
illustrious friend of whom I have sworn not to tell the 

The wife of Quezada, who had no children and who was 
taken with the simple graces of the pretended page, believed 
him to be the fruit of a fault of youth of her husband before 
his marriage, and attached herself the more to him that she 
hoped no longer to have herself an heir of his name. She 
had the child to call her by the name the next in tenderness 
after mother, that of aunt, and Quezada called Don John 
his nephew. An accident, however, half revealed the truth 
to the wife. 

During the leisures which war and the court left rarely 
to Quezada, the equerry of Charles V. used to come to 
inhabit Villa-Garcias. Awakened one night by the flames 
of a conflagration which consumed his house, he rushed to 
save the child who lay asleep, even before flying to the 
chamber of his wife. Madeleine d'UUoa understood from 
this predilection of duty over nature that Don John was a 
sacred deposit of which her husband owed account to the 
emperor. Quezada, without avowing any thing, left the 
supposition to take its course. 

The residence of Charles V. at the monastery of Saint 
Just completed the disclosure to Madeleine d'Ulloa. That 
prince had kept about his person a few of his former servi- 
tors, among whom Quezada was the most dear and the most 
familiar. The rules of the convent interdicting the access 
of Saint Just to women, Quezada had established his wife 
and his page at the neighboring village of Cuacos. The 
emperor thus gave himself the joy of contemplating, without 
being known as his father, the page of Madeleine d'Ulloa. 
He received frequently in the monastery the wife of the 
equerry accompanied by the boy. Although he did not wish 
as yet to reveal his birth to the page the looks wiUi which 


he caressed his countenance and the charm which he felt in 
his amusements half revealed to the servants and to the 
monks that this child was something more than a mere 
diversion to the great solitary. Don John improved himself 
under his inspection in all the exercises of the mind, of arms, 
of horsemanship, which at that time formed the page or the 
accomplished knight. History offers few scenes at once more 
majestic and tender, than that of the disgusted master 
of the world, seated at the window of his cell in a convent 
of monks between his faithful equerry and the adoptive 
mother of his child, looking at his son, the image of a too 
loved mother, playing and wrestling in the garden of the 
monastery, yearning to clasp him to his heart, and not daring 
to tell him his name or his rank, for fear of offending God 
and of scandalizing the monarchy. 


After Charles Fifth, as if the better to eradicate himself 
from the empire and from the earth, had caused to be sol- 
emnized before him and before his son his own obsequies, he 
died, and the boy attended with Quexada at the real funeral. 
He wept the emperor without being still certain that he was 
weeping for his father. Quexada closed the eyes of his 
master after death. He took back his wife and his page 
to the mansion of Villa-Garcias, revealing his secret but to 
Philip II., legitimate son and heir to the kingdom of Spain. 

" There is much discussion," wrote he to the new empe- 
ror, " as to the true father of Don John ; but I have always 
denied and shall always keep silence. Your Majesty may be 
assured that the secret is secure, although I give the boy an 
education conformable to his august origin." The heroic 
soul of Quexada passed completely into his pupil. 

When Philip II. returned to Spain in 1559, he had 
Quexada apprized to place himself on his way with his page 
near the monastery of Spina. Quexada, in taking the boy 
from his wife confessed to her for the first time the whole 
truth about the love of his master and of Barba. Philip 
IL, under pretext of a hunt, encountered, by accident, 
Quexada and the page on the solitary borders of the forest 
of Tonozos. He prolonged considerably the conversation 
with Quexada, while gazing with visible pleasure on the 
young page. The oval face, the lofty forehead, the aquiline 


nose, the prominent month, the air at once pensive and mar- 
tial of the young man, retraced to the eyes of Philip II. the 
rejuyenated portrait of Charles Fifth. His heart was not as 
yet hardened by the fenaticism of the throne which put to 
death Don Carlos. His eyes filled with tears, he embraced 
the page, and named to him in a low Toice his father. Then 
remounting his horse smd approaching his suite who had 
moved off during this interview : '^ The hunt is at an end," 
said he, looking still at Don John ; " I have never had a 
more agreeable encounter." 

Don John followed from this day forth Philip II. and 
finished his education under the preceptors who trained up 
the King's own son, Don Carlos. He was given the signifi- 
cant name of Don John of Austria. Ten years after, he 
signalized his courage against the revolted Moors of the 
Alpuzaras. Quexada, appointed governor of the prince, 
president of the council of the Indies, general of the Span- 
ish infantry, accompanied him to teach him war. Don John 
and Quezada went, before the campaign, to Yilla-Garcia to 
salute, the one his adoptive mother, the other his well-beloved 
wife. She commended them oiïè to the other and both to 
the protection of Gtod, and saw them depart with tears. 
These tears were a presentiment. In an encounter with the 
Moors, Don John, too far advimced, was going to fall before 
the bullets which had already fractured his helmet, when hi» 
brave tutor throwing himself between the Moors and him 
received in the breast the discharge of the enemy. He 
expired amid the conflict in the arms of his pupil, become 
already a hero, but remaining still a son to him. Don John 
buried him after the victory in the church of the Hierono- 
mites of Baza, in awaiting till he could take back the body 
to his widow. 

" Quexada is no more," wrote he to Donna Magdalena, in 
relating to her and in mitigating the severity oi her loss ; 
" he has died as he should die, fighting for glory, for his coun- 
try, and devoting himself voluntarily to save him whom he 
loved as a son ; he has died crowned with immortal honor. 
Whatever I am, whatever I may be destined to one day 
become, it is to him that I owe and shall owe all ; it is he 
who has brought me into the world by a second birth, that 
of the intellect and of the heart, perhaps more noble than 
the first. Poor desolate widow ! mother for ever cherished ! 
I remain alone to you on the earth, and I belong to you by 


a double title, I for whom your husband has died I I who 
cause involuntarily your misfortune I Restrain your despair 
with your usual force of wisdom ; would that I were by you 
to dry your tears or to mingle mine with yours I Adieu, 
dear and honored mother! Pray Gtod to let your son 
return to you to be pressed to your heart." 

The young man who wrote thus in the shadow of a 
throne to a poor widow of Villa-Garcia foreshowed the veri- 
table hero of his age. He accomplished with all the fervor 
of youth, of glory and of love, the filial pieties which he had 
vowed to his adoptive mother. On return from his cam- 
paigns, his first visit was to her; his earliest maritime 
trophy, a beacon taken from a flag-ship of the Turks, was 
sent by him to Donna Magdalena After the victory of 
Lepanto, it was also on her account that he requested as his 
sole recompense a favor of the Pope. 

Such was the young hero for whom birth, the influence 
of Philip II. and his precocious reputation, obtained the 
general command of the combined army. 


Glory was the sole heritage of those children of love, 
such as Don John or Dunois. Their fathers, unable to 
bequeath them either their name or their throne, wished to 
bequeath them at least the victories obtained for their sub- 
jects by those heirs of their blood. Not daring to make them 
kings, they sought to make them heroes. Nature often co- 
operated with the fathers in avenging the ]|^tards for the 
superiority of rank of the legitimate princes. Children of 
youth and of love, these disowned sons had the privilege of 
disinherited beings; more resemblance to the father, a 
mother more beautiful, an affection more tender, because it 
is more concealed, an education more masculine. Those 
men who receive less from fortune strain more fully the 
springs of their character to make themselves a destiny 
worthy of their blood. Such was Don John, already the 
first of knights, before being the first of admirals in Europe. 
Andrew Doria, the hero of Genoa, now old, felt himself 
honored by at once prompting and obeying him in those 
seas which he had filled with his name. 



The combined fleet put out from Messina in search of 
the Turkish fleet the 2ôth of September, 1571. Don John 
commanded personally seventy-two vessels of Spain, six of 
the Order of Malta, three of the house of Savoy; Marc- 
Anthony Colonna, admiral of the Pope, commanded the 
twelve galleys of îlome ; admiral Sebastian Yeniero the first 
seaman of Venice, one hundred and twelve galleys, of which 
several were galeasses of dimensions equal to floating for- 
tresses. John of Cordova, admiral of Sicily, explored the 
route with eight fast-sailing vessels. Andrew Doria sailed 
in the vanguard with hb fifty-four galleys. The Venetian 
fleet, divided into two squadrons, formed the centre ; the 
admiral of Naples bought up the rear with thirty-two vessels. 
Don John had given orders to the Sicilians at Ôie head, and 
to the Neapolitans of the reserve, to flank the fleet as two 
wings at the moment when it should unfold itself in line on 
view of the enemy. 

Don John was ignorant of the station and the number of 
vessels of the Turkish fleet. After having, like Nelson in 
our days, cruised during sixteen days from one shore to the 
other of the Mediterranean in search of the Turkish fleet 
without finding them, his instinct led him to return at full 
sail, the 7th of October before day, into the Adriatic. The 
first glimmerings of the dawn showed him an immense cloud 
of sails behind the little islands called Echinades or Leech 
Islands, which shut like so many buoys the profound gulf of 
Lepanto, at the outlet of the little river AcheloOs. It was 
the two hundred and twenty vessels or galleys of the Otto- 
man fleet which were coasting along Albania in quest on 
their side of the confederate fleet and of the battle-ground 
which had so often been propitious to them under Barba- 
rossa ; but Barbarossa was no more. Pialé himself, tired of 
the sea, had been made vizier. An intrepid but inexperi- 
enced admiral, Ali-Muezzinzadé, commanded the fleet as 
capitan-pasha. His lieutenants were the Algerian Ouloudj, 
the Tripolitan Djafar-Pasha, in fine young Hassan-Pasha, son 
of Barbarossa. Pertew-Pasha commanded the land force 
embarked upon the fleet, more embarrassing than useful in a 
conflict of five hundred vessels upon an unfamiliar element. 

At si^ht of the vsmguard of Don John, which veered 
about behmd the Echinade islets in order to apprize the com- 


bined fleet, Pertew-Pasha and Hassan-Pasha, called to coun- 
cil on the admiraPs vessel, advised the capitan-pasha to 
remain on the defensive in the gulf of Lepanto and to 
postpone the battle until his novice crews, become more 
familiar with the sea, would yield more soldiers to his army 
and more activity to his vessels. But all prudence appeared 
cowardice to the rash, and infidelity to the fanatical. Muezzin- 
zadé only crowded the more sail to fly the quicker to the 
encounter of the fleet of the Christians. 


Don John, perceiving this manœuvre, hoisted at his miz- 
zen-mast a small green banner of a square form, the signal 
concerted with the admirals for forming the line of battle. 
Each of the divisions was disposed, directed and animated 
by one of those consummate seamen who had a name to lose 
hj defeat or to illustrate by participation in a memorable 
victory. Andrew Doria, the veteran and the example of all, 
formed the right wing, and was the first to run between the 
shoals of the Leech isles to deploy himself in the gulf. 
The provedUore of Venice, Barbarigo, coasted on the left the 
central island of Petalia or VUlordi-Marmo, and covering 
his sails with the shadow of thb island, debouched of a sudden 
in the gulf by the arm of sea into which falls the Acheloûs, 

Don John with the bpdy of the fleet formed himself into 
a vast crescent and followed slowly his two wings. He 
found the Turks, deceived by the separate appearance of 
Andrew Doria, ranged in column on the coast of the Morea 
to engage with the Genoese admiral, instead of facing on 
the whole breadth of the gulf his own vessels. The prince 
of Parma, Famese, admiral of Savoy ; the duke of Urbin, 
admiral of G^noa ; the commandant of Castile, admiral of 
Naples ; Marc- Anthony Colonna, admiral of the Pope ; the 
marquis of Santa Croce, who led the rearguard, flanked the 
vessel of Don John. In a few tacks, the two fleets, now 
separated by a small distance, stood still as if to measure 
one another visually for a moment. 

The Turks had time to change their movement in column 

on the coaat of the Morea, into a line of battle as deep and 

extended as that of the Christians. The sun beamed resplend- 

^ently upon the glossy waves and was reflected from the 

cliffs of Albania upon the sea. At the middle of its course 

48 HI8T0BT or TUBKST. 

it shone behind the fleet of Don John, and it danled the 
ejes of the Turks, in repercossing on the sails, on the hel- 
mets, on the cannons and on the cuirassés of the confede- 
rates. Thousands of oars, at this moment at rest, were held 
suspended on the sides of the galleys corered with combat- 
ants. By a strange derision of fortune, Mussulman slaves, 
forming the crew of the Christians, were praying for the 
Turks while rowing for the Christians, ami on the other 
hand the Christian slaves, for oarsmen of the Turkish yeasels, 
were at the same time imploring secretly the victory for 
their brethren in Christ The wind had fallen with the 
morning breeze which sets in from the mouth of the Ache- 
loiis at the dawn ; the oars alone are about to move these six 
hundred slumbering vessels. 

The battle commenced as if spontaneously, and by the 
narrowing of the basin which forced the left wing of the 
Christians and the right wing of the Ottomans to come in 
contact at the bottom of the gulfl The superiority of the 
number and of the land troops on the Turkish galleys was 
ffttal to the proveditore of Venice, Barbarigo; he fell 
beneath the boarding-pikes of the soldiers of Hassan. The 
standards of Venice disappeared for a moment in that con- 
flict at the extremity of the gul£ 

Muezzinzadé thought he had onl^ to complete the victory 
by boarding the admiral's vessel which bore the green flag of 
Don John. He reserved for himself alone this duel of death 
in the midst of the fleets. Confl(iing in the mast of his 
vessel, and in the five hundred Janissaries who covered her 
deck, he rushed, without looking to see if he was followed, 
upon the galley of thegeneralisamo. The two vessels, a» if 
they were animated through their rigging and through their 
members with the fury of the two admirals, dashed against 
each other, grappled each other, crashed each other, quit 
each other and re^appled during & mutual boarding which 
changed their two decks, their mast and their yards into a 
field of carnage, now invaded, anon lost, by the Turks and 
by the Christians. The wounded and dying fallen over 
board fought in the very wave& The sea was empurpled ; 
blood trickled instead of water from the helm and the oars ; 
a cloud of smoke and of arrows concealed from the fleets 
the victory or the defeat of their two admirals. 

Don John and Muezzinzadé sought each other in the con- 
flict, and were at last about to meet upon a mound of dead bodies 


which s^NUTttted them, when a blow given from the rigging 
of the Spanish yessel, laid ppostrate the capitan-pasha at the 
foot of his mast. The cries of victory from the Spaniards 
and of lamentation frcrm the Turkish crew were confonnded 
in a deafening clamor in the air. Don John stepped over the 
body of his expiring enemy to exterminate the last group of 
Janissaries on the poop, while the Spaniards, as ferocious as 
ihe Africans, cut off the head behind him of the capitan- 
padia, still alive. At the sight of this bleeding hesul, of 
which the turban trickled blood on their foreheads, the ter- 
rified Janissaries plunged into the waves or surrendered. 
Don John pulled down the Ottoman colors from the mast 
and hoisted the colors of Spain. The smoke, swept away 
by the wmd, let both the fleets see the issue of the duel 
Don John repulsed with horrcar the severed head of the 
capitan-pasha which was brought him by his soldiers ; he 
had it thrown into the sea as a trophy which would stain his 
victory. But his soldiers, less generous than he, fished up 
the head of Muezzinzadé, buoyed upon the waves by its 
mnslin turban, and nailed it to the head of the main-mast to 
strike dismay into the Ottomans. 

The exploit of Don John and the temerity of the Capitan- 
pasha decided, almost without contest, the fate of the 
battle at the centre. Andrew Doria, less fortunate on the 
right, let himself be cut off from the body of the fleet, and 
was becalmed upon the coast of the Morea, with his sixty 
vessels lost to the action. Ouloudj, with tjwenty Algerian 
galleys, precipitated himself boldly into the intervals which 
want of wind and inequality of movement left between the 
vessels of the squadron of Doria. Already he had boarded 
himself the flag-ship of Malta, prostrated hundreds of 
knights, and beheaded with his own hand the commander 
of Messina, their commodore, when the fall of the Turkish 
flag on the vessel of Muezzinzadé disclosed to him the fate 
of the principal conflict in the body of the battle. 

Despairing then of the victory, and foreseeing the doom 
of his own vessels, when three hundred Christian vessels, 
free from enemies at the left and centre, should wheel about 
like a vast net upon the right, he pierced, with forty Turkish 
vessels, the line half broken of Andrew Doria, ranged 
adjacent to the dielves of ^e Echinades, and making for the 
open sea, saved at least this firagment of a fleet to the Otto- 
mans. The unexplained disappearance of their left wing 
Vol. III.— 8 


made the Turks beliere that it fled yaBquiflhed before the 
cannons of Doria. The sool ef the Ottoman vessels van- 
ished with it AU those that were not boarded by the 
Spanish and the Venetians, abandoned themselves to the drift 
of the wind and of the waves, and went to founder on the 
rooks or on the flats of the outlets of the Aohelous. The 
Christian long-boats were sent to bum their empty hulks ; 
ninety of these pyres illuminated on that night with their 
flames the ooast of Albania. One hundred and forty 
boarded vessels, with their hundreds of cannons and their 
thousands of prisoners, were partitioned the following day 
amon^ tibe confederates upon tne field of battle. 

The waters of Lepanto had ingulfed in a few hours 
thirty thousand Turkbn bodies and ten thousand Christian. 
The naval battle of Actium, fought fifteen centuries pre- 
viously upon the same waters, between Anthcmy and Augus- 
tus, competitors for the Boman world, had not cast up more 
victims on the funeral sands of the Archelous. if Don 
John and Muesneniadé had been but two ambitious rivals, 
disputing with each other the possession of the universe, 
this victory would have ^ven to the one dominion, to the 
other servitude ; but religions and races do not perish in a 
battle. The victory of Lepanto, three times more bloody 
than that of Actium, gave to Don John but glory and spoils^ 
Precious arms, purple standards, silver crescents, pasha's 
horse-tails, colden beacons which marked the mde of the 
Ottoman admirals upon their poops, and twebre thousand 
captives, were the sole results of the battle of Lepanta 
Bome, Naples, Venice, raised in their churdies votive monu- 
ments in commemoration of the victory of the cross. 

The Turks, scarce touched in their vital force, which 
rested on the land and not the sea, dissembled even their 
disaster to the eyes of their capital Pialé, who adminis- 
tered the marine, and Ouloudj-rasha, who had saved sixty 
vesels, concerted to reconstruct, arm, and equip three hundred 
other war-vessels in the ports of Africa, of the Morea, of 
Oaramania, of Bhodes and of the Archipelago, before bring- 
ing, according to the national usage, the fleet into the port 
of Constantinople. The treasures, the materials, the cannons, 
the rigging, the arsenab reserved by Soliman and by Sokolli 
might supply three disasters of Lepanto. When the new 
fleet of three hundred and sixty sail entered before winter 



the port of Constantinople, tlie people could mistake tlie 
defeat for a triumph. 

Ouloudj-Pasha, for not having despaired of the fleet and 
for having preserved sixty vessels to the empire, was ap- 
pointed capitan-pasha or admiralissimo, in place of the brave 
and unfortunate Muezzinzadé. Selim II. changed his name 
of Ouloudj into KUidj^ that is to say, the sword. He found 
in the grand vizier a man as capable of retrieving defeat as 
of preparing victory. Some days after his elevation to the 
post of capitan-pasha, and while he was occupied day and 
night with constructing and arming a fleet superior to that 
of the confederates, Kilidj represented to the grand vizier 
that there was plenty of all tilings in the arsenals, timber, 
cordage, cannons, mechanics, salaries, and that with such 
resources he would engage to have ready five hundred vessels 
before spring, if it were not for the ancnors which the forges 
QÎ Turkey could not cast as fast as the shipwrights created 
their vessels. 

^^ Do not fear, pasha,'' replied with a smiling assurance 
Sokolli, ^^ the wealth of the empire is such at this moment 
that if it were impossible to make iron anchors and canvas 
sails, we would fabricate anchors of silver, cordage of silk, 
and sails of satin for our fleet." 

Sokolli received about the same time an envoy from 
Venice, Barbare, charged by the republic to sound the dis- 
positions of the Porte. '^ Thou- art come to see,'' said the 
grand vizier with a chuckle of satisfaction, ^' what is the state 
of our courage or of our dejection after the misfortune we 
have suffered at Lepanto ? But know that there is a great 
difference between our loss and yours : in wresting from you 
the kingdom of Cyprus, we have cut from you an arm, and 
you, in destroying our fleet have merely clipped off our beard ; 
your arm will not grow again, but our beard will sprout the 
stronger and the thicker." 

Kilidj put out in fact in spring with three hundred sail, 
and braved the fleet of the confederates, already dissolved 
by the divergent ambitions which dissolve all confederations 
after a victory. France was uneasy at the alliance of the 
republic of Venice with Spain and Austria confounded in a 
single power aspiring to universal monarchy from Cadiz to 
Amsterdam. The senate of Venice herself, cooped up 
already within Austrian possessions and trembling to farther 
aggrandize the ascendant of Spain, of Naples and of Genoa, 


swayed by the houBe of Austria upon the seai^ concerted 
with France to detach the republic from the Catholic coa- 
lition and to reconcile Venice and Constantinople. The able 
French ambassador, M. de Noailles, bishop of Aix in 
ProTence, subordinating religious prejudice to reason of state, 
negotiated secretly with Sokolli this reconciliation, important 
to the three states and above all to the balimce of Europe. 

The patient and mediatorial negotiations of M. de 
Noailles brought together at last the signatures of the grand 
vixier and of the Venetian envoys to a treaty of peace irawn 
up by the eloquent secretary of state, Feridoun. The peace 
was signed between the republic and the Porte the 7th March, 
1573. It was necessary, but cruel to the Venetians. The 
blood uselessly spilled by them at Lepanto was thrown 
away ; they consented besides to indemnify the Turks for the 
sums which Selim II. had expended in depriving them of 
the kingdom of Cyprus ; in fine, they acknowledged them- 
selves tributary for the island of Zante, and for the places 
which were left them on the coast of Albania. 

This peace, glorious to Turkey, profitable to France, 
shameful to Venice, baleful to the house of Austria, baffled 
all the plans of Spain and of the Pope against Islamism. 
Don John, the victor of Lepanto, avenged the conqueror of 
Tunis. Kilidj, the capitan-pasha, sailed with two hundred 
vessels and thurty thousand Janissaries to restore upon the 
coast of Africa the patronage of the Ottomans. Tunis, re- 
conquered in contempt of the Spaniards, became a military 
colony of the Turks, and presently after an advanced post 
of independent pirates, of whom the patrimony was the 
pillage of the seas. 

Austria, disconcerted by this success of the French nego- 
tiator, hastened to claim humbly herself the continuation of 
the truce which she had signed with Soliman II., said to pay 
the Porte the humiliating tribute by means of which she pur- 
chased the security of Hungary. Soliman would seem to 
have reigned stilL 


The reign of Selim II. thus far was, in effect, but the 
prolongation of that of Soliman by the genius and hand of 
his minister Sokolli. Selim had but one virtue, he let a 
great man reign in his place. liong plunged in the delights 


of the harem and the intoxication of the wines of Cyprus, 
he appeared no better than a sated volaptuary on the throne. 
Years, disgust, precocious infirmities, and the reflections 
which the evening of life bring with its shadows, had all of 
a sudden transformed him into a new man. The affectionate 
and respectful reprimands of the virtuous mufti of Constan- 
tinople, Abou-Sooud, had called his soul to repentance and 
to virtue. Sobriety, prayer, the severest exercises of Mus- 
sulman piety, had taken the place of the disorders of his 
early life. He was no longer occupied but in preparing 
himself for death, which he felt to be at hand. 

The death of his counsellor Abou-Sooud, which deprived 
him of the conversation of this sage, appeared to nim a 
warning from heaven ; he wept the severe mufti as he would 
have wept his spiritual father. His melancholy found no 
charms but in the solitude of the gardens and the meditation 
of the Koran on the brink of the sea. He regarded in the 
prosperities and glories of his reign but the prosperity of 
Islamism, of which he was become the dervish rather than 
the Sultan. This religious melancholy, habitual to the sons 
of Othman at the decline of life, recalls that of Dioclesian, 
of Charles V., of Louis XIV. in another faith. The faith 
of the Ottomans demands but few efforts of the reason ; 
Atheism does not pervert their vices to the extent of denying 
Providence. They are weak, often ferocious, never impious. 
This has been seen in Amurath II., in Bajazet II. A 
warning of adversity, of sickness, of religion, by the mouth 
of a dervish or a sage, revives their conscience to remorse 
and even to the correction of their disorders. 

Such had been on Selim the effect of the reproofs of the 
mufti Abou-Sooud. The favorite of his heart and the com- 
panion of his debaucheries, Djelal-Beg, having uttered some 
railleries against the austerity of the counsels of Abou- 
Sooud, SeUm excluded sternly his old friend from his 
presence, and relegated him into a distant government. 

An earthquake at Constantinople and a conflagration that 
devoured the kitchens and the baths of the seraglio, appeared 
to him chastisements and presages which saddened farther 
his spirits. He had the edifices rebuilt. His sole amuse- 
ment was to contemplate the work of the artisans who 
decorated them. One day as he thus visited the vast hall 
of the baths, re-edified between the seraglio and the harem, 
his foot slipped upon the smooth and moist marble flags of 


the bathbg-Toom. This aoddent, aggraymted by the obesitj 
of his body, and the dejection of his spirits, appeared to him 
a sign so fiital, that he returned struck with stupor to his 
apartments, and survived but a few days his fall. 

The empire was not aware of his death until his funeral. 
Sokolli sustained alone the weight of the ^vemment, of 
which Selim II. was but the mute and invisible sanction. 
Never did sovereign more incapable of governing reign with 
more happiness and glory to his people, precisely because he 
did not really reign at all His inertia availed more to his 
nation than would have done a turbulent activity, and it may 
be said that he served the Mussulmans even by his vices. 
An incapable successor, but who feels his incapacity, is often 
more useful to the development of the plans of a great man 
than a mediocre and a bustling heir : tne one deranges the 
ideas of the predecessor by his own ; the other lets the same 
system endure for two reigns. 

Such was Selim II. conqueror of Cyprus : a consummate 
negotiator with Europe ; restorer of the marine of the Otto- 
mans; continuator of a system of alliance with France which 
created in his favor an European balance against the house 
of Austria; promoter of the junction of four seas by the 
piercing of the isthmus of the Crimea and of Suez ; van- 
Quisher, then protector of the Venetians, whom he subor- 
dinated to the system of Ottoman policy in the East to 
detach them from Germany and turn them in his interest 
against the Pope, his natural enemy ; vanquished one day 
by Don John, but the next day vanquisher of this hero and 
triumpher of the Catholic league, which by his policy he 
decomposed, member by member, after having shivered it by 
arms ; pacificator of the Crimea, of Poland, of Transylvania 
and of Arabia; economist in fine of the public treasury, 
largely voided in the years of war, more largely replenished 
in the years of peace ; and being the first to conceive for the 
Ottomans a new political economy in an entrepôt of the 
commerce of Europe and of India, in freedom of navigation, 
in the security of commerce, and in the conquests of the only 
permanent wealth of an empire, the conquests of agriculture, 
of labor and of peace. 

Such was the reigu of Selim IL, or rather such was the 
reign to which the gratitude of the Turks should have given 
the name of Sokolli. Selim was but the name, Sokolli was 


ihe soul and the hand of the empire ; but it is to Selim that 
the empire owed SokolU. Posterity to be just must there- 
fore divide, vnequallj but equitably, between the Sultan and 
his minister the glory and the prosperity of the Ottomans. 




Selim II. had left at his death six sons and three daughters. 
The sons were Moorad, Mohammed, Soliman, Mustapha, 
Djehanghir and Abdallah; the daughters Esma-Sultana, 
Gwher-Sultana, and Sohah-Sultana. Esma-Sultana was 
given in marriage to Sokolli, Gwher-Sultana to Pialé the 
oapitan-pasha, Schah-Sultana to the a^ or general of the 
Janissaries, Hassan. This consanguinity of wives had con- 
tributed, under the reign of Selim, to bind together the tri- 
umvirate of the grand vizier, the grand admiral, and the 
grand general of the empire, become thus the adoptive £unilj 
of the sovereign.* 

The mother of Mourad or Amurath III., the eldest of 
those sons, was Nour-Banou, a Persian, whose name signifies 
tooman of splendor. She had sought in her affection for 
this son a compensation for the vices and the inconstancies 
of the father. Amurath III. had the single virtue of a 
deference for his mother. Although scarcely aged twenty- 
eight years, his soul and body, al^e effeminate, presented 
traces of the bad examples of Selim, and of the interested 
complaisances of Nour-Banou. By his small and slim stature 
and t£e oblong oval of his face, he recalled somewhat of his 
grandfather Soliman II. in his youth ; but it was one of those 
remote and illusory resemblances which a second glance is' 

* Here is in fact the policy, the raiaon ^kre of polygamy, the same 
essentially in the Turkish emperors as in the Arab chieftains of the de- 
sert. Intermarriage, or in the more abstract expression generation, is 
the primitive principle of social aggregation and fidelity. The means of 
multiplying its applications are made proportional to the need of them, 
tlvat is to say, to die social hackwa/rdmess^ andtiiie extentol the commanity. 
— Translatar, 


Sufficient to dissipate. His paleness revealed the exhaustion 
of precocious pleasures rather than reflection. His eyes 
were mild, but utterly without a ray to light their languor. 

His eyebrows were dark, and described the feminine arch 
of the Persians upon his forehead ; the eyelashes, long as a 
woman's, had the fineness of silk ; but his beard, thin and red, 
contrasted with this color of his hair, and impressed upon 
his physiognomy a sort of sickly and shabby air, which 
recalled the murk of the dungeon rather than the splendor 
of the seraglio. Addicted from his infancy to the excesses 
of wine and the use of opium, his head seemed to totter 
upon the bust. His look, oblique and undecided, was 
covered with a light haze. Some fits of epilepsy, an in- 
firmity of the body which bof ders closely on the mind, left 
some wrinkles on the brow and some convulsive twitchings 
on his lips. His intellect was, however, not without delicacy 
nor without culture. He loved to hear the poets recite their 
verses at his festivals. Music, that poetry of the sensed, 
and dancing, that poetry of the movements, charmed his ears 
and his eyes. The mechanical arts awakened his curiosity 
and interest. Venetian painters, clockmakers of Vienna, 
gave him lessons in their respective arts. But his two 
dominant passions were friendship and love. His mother 
had taught him above all to love. 

Education had done but little for him except to develope 
his nature. It may be said that mother, sister, wives and 
friends, he loved to frenzy, and that this flame of his heart, 
in passing at last into his senses, consumed his reign, his 
reason and his life. The history of his attachments became 
the history of the empire under his reign. 

These attachments had commenced in him almost with 
his life. Two young boys, Hungarian nobles, one named 
Djafer, the other Ghaznefer, made prisoners under Selim, 
had been circumcised, deprived at their request of the signs 
of virility, and attached to the harem for the education and 
the amusement of the young Sultan. Amurath III. had 
them as favorites before having them as ministers. They 
were worthy of it by their virtue as much as by their talents. 
Ghaznefer especially, whose name denoted the daring lion^ 
and who cultivated with genius both letters and history, con- 
tributed to inspire his friend with a taste for poetry and 
for munificence, which begets talent in monarchical countries. 
The historian Seadeddin, at once a statesman aixd annaUst, 
Vol. in.— 3* 

58 HI8T0BT OF TtTBKfiT. 

was introduced by Ohamefer into the intimacy of young 
Moorad, while still resident at Magnesia) the sojoom of the 
heirs apparent» This prince made him his lala or honorary 
governor after his majority» Cadiiadé, another friend of the 
two fftYorites, a man as ambitious of dignities as of science, 
was his political counsellor and his minister in prospect» 
The poet Schemsi^Pasha, justly celebrated for his philosophic 
poetry, which sanctified by the holiness of the subject the 
charm of his verses, taught him the elegances of language 
and the mysteries of contemplation. But the favorite 
who possessed his heart among all was a young Turcoman 
of a noble race, named Ouweïs. 

One day as Mourad, during his compulsory residence at 
Magnesia, was come to hunt swans in the wild valley of the 
Caister, which is separated by Mount Tmolus from the plain 
of Magnesia, he stopped for some time in the pastoral city 
of Tyra (the Greek Thyatira) the capital of this valley» 
The picturesque site of this city, of which the houses and 
the minarets, like cliffs of white marble, gleam upon the 
rapid steep of a wooded hill across the foliage of plane trees, 
the shadow of Mount Taurus which shelters it, the murmur 
and the coolness of the waters that foam in its cascades, the 
green meadows that meander at its feet, the abundance of 
wild animals that people its forests, seduced Mourad. He 
prolonged there his sojourn. Young Ouweïs, who occupied a 
high rank in the place, and whom the familiarity of hunting 
parties permitted him to converge with, struck him by the 
masculine frankness of his countenance and of his speech» 
He thought he met in him a second Ibrahim for his future 
reign, like the flute-player encountered almost in the same 
spot by his grandfather, the great Soliman» He asked of 
Selim his father permission to attach to him this proud 
Turcoman, and to appoint him intendant-general of his little 
court of Magnesia» Selim granted Ouweïs to his son. 

The ascendant of this defterdar grew from day to day in 
the domestic familiarity of exile» This ascendant was 
founded neither on the culture of mind, nor on the elegance 
of manners which characterised the other friends of Mou- 
rad» Ouweis, illiterate and rustic, had but the rude virtues 
of his deserts» He pleased his master, iike the tamed lion 
which the princes of the East love to keep in their divan to 
inspire fear in those who visit them» 



A beautifdl Venetian slave named Safijé (the pure), the 
first wife given to Monrad in his adolescence by the Siutana 
Nour-Banou his mother, controlled the eyes and the heart 
of the young Sultan. Safiyé was the daughter of a noble 
senatorial house of Venice, the Baffos. In a short voya^ 
between Venice and Corfu whither she was going, while stul ^ 
a child, to rejoin her father, proveditore of the island, the 
pirates of the fleet of Barbarossa took off the vessel that 
bore her, and made a present of her to the mother of Mou- 
rad. Her country, her beauty,, her birth, her education, made 
her worthy of the loves of a prince. Mourad attached him- 
self for a long time to Safiyé with the ardor of his years 
and with the constancy of a l^usband. She gave him a son, 
and became thus Sultana Khasseki, or mother of the prince. 

For a long time the passion of Mourad for Safiyé shut his 
eyes to all the other beauties with whom jealousy peopled 
the harem of his mother. Nour-Banou besan to fear that 
the exclusive empire of the Venetian over me heart of her 
son might intrench upon her own influence. Selim II. 
himself feared that the inheritance of the throne was not 
sufficiently assured by an only son of an only wife. The 
sister of Mourad, the Sultana Èsma, wife of the grand vizier, 
conspired with Nour-Banou, with her husband Sokolli and 
with her father, to introduce some rival beauties into the 
harem of her brother. The mother and the sister had search 
made every where for young slaves the most renowned for 
their charms of feature and their witcheries of wit, who 
might seduce from the Sultana Khasseki the heart of her 
husband. A Persian slave and an Hungarian slave entered 
despite his repugnance the harem of Mourad. The Hunga- 
rian girl, more lively and more artful still than beautiful, 
says the historian of this love, the Venetian Sagredo, suc- 
ceeded in rivalling a moment Safiyé. But the fidelity of 
Mourad deceived for a long time the hopes of his sister and 
of his mother { his heart refused the inconstancy of the 
amours to which he had been made to consent mentally. 

The Sultana Nour-Banou, relates the chronicler of the 
seraglio, Ali, in his annals in verse, accused Safiyé of magical 
incantations against the fruitfulness of the two rival slaves. 
Suspecting some Jewish women and some servants of the 
haxem of having participated in these imaginary artifices of 


the Venetian, he had some of them put to the rack bj the 
ennuchs, and others cast into the sea by the mutes ; oth^v 
still, esteemed less culpable or excused on the score of youth, 
were banished into the island of Rhodes, and recalled after* 
wards to marry the fayorites of the Sultan. 

Meanwhile these intrigues, long pursued around the 
young prince, ended with instilling into his mind unjust sus* 
picions against the virtue of Safiyé. He remored her for a 
moment from his bed, and gave himself up with the impetu- 
osity of Touth to the excesses of a passion artificially 
fomented by his corrupters in his veins. The extravagance 
and frenzy of hie caprices caused a rise, before even his 
advent to the throne, in the price of beautiful slaves of all 
nations in the bazaars of Broussa and of Trebizond. The 
number of the Sultanas Khasseki or mothers of boys, 
amounted, says the historian Ali, to forty; that of the 
women of his harem, passing objects of his caprices, to five 
hundred. Over one hundred cluldren, sons or daughters of 
these slaves, were bom in a few years of these disorders. The 
government of his harem gave him more trouble than that 
of his empire. His mother advised him to assign it after 
herself to a favorite of his father, named Djanfeda. Djan- 
feda was consummate in the intrigues and the administration 
of the seraglio. We will presently see the ascendant, the 
elevation and the tragic destiny of this woman, veritable 
vizier of a prince of whom the sole serious business was a 
sickly sensuality. 

But even these vices were unable to extinguish in the 
heart of Mourad the remembrance of the first and pure 
felicity which he enjoyed in his chaste union with Safiyé. 
Memory and repentance restored to the Venetian all her 
moral influence over her husband. The others had his 
debauches; she had his affection. He adored her as the 
-4ixing reminiscence of his happiness, as the mother of his 
favOTit&-SQn. He took from her all the resolutions of his 
policy. A slave^f Venice was the veritable future empress 
of the Ottomans. 

Such was the exiled court of Mourad at Magnesia when 
the grand vizier SokoUi sent him secret intelligence of the 
death of Selim II. Mourad set out the very night for Con- 
stantinople, attended only by four favorites. Arrived un- 
expectedly at Moudania, a small port of the sea of Marmora, 
on the bank opposite to Constantinople, impatience to seize 


tlie empire did not let him wait for the imperial gallej wbich 
Sokolli was sending across the Propontis. He stepped with- 
out giving his niune into a nine-oared barge which chanced 
to be anchored in the harbor, and which belonged to the sec- 
retary of state, the celebrated Feredoun, of whom the rowers 
were the slaves. A stormy sea brought them in a few hours 
of night upon the deserted beach of the seraglio near the 
batteries which bordered the wall of enclosure and not far 
from the Kiosk of Bajazet. It was the 21st of December, 
1574, at midnight. The squalls of winter covered with 
foam the strand of the seraglio, and moaned through the 
cypresses of the gardens. The gates were shut, and not to 
be opened at that hour but to the grand vizier himself. 
Mourad, spattered with foam and exhausted from the dis- 
comfort of an harassing passage in a. vessel open to the 
surges, asked his companions for a little clean water to wash 
his face and hands. None was found upon this pandbank ; 
he was obliged to wash himself in sea-water. He then sat 
himself beneath a tree to obtain shelter from the rain and 
wind, while messengers were gone to wake up the grand 
vizier and the seraglio, awaiting like a strange guest at the 
gates of his own palace. A fountain has been subsequently 
built beneath this tree where the Sultan had suffered from 
thirst without finding water to quench it. 

Meanwhile the grand vizier, awakened by Hassan a slave 
of Feredoun, and by the pilot of the barge, hastened with 
his chiaoux bearing lanterns to the beach designated by the 
slaves of Feredoun. Having never seen the face of Mourad, 
and fearing some snare of the partisans of his brothers, the 
grand vizier, before kissing his hand and recognizing him as 
his master wished to have the testimony of his mother. He 
conducted Mourad on foot through the garden of the Kiosk 
inhabited by Nour-Banou, now Sultana Validé. Entering 
first into the chamber of the Sultana he showed her him who 
was said to be her son, and asked her if she was his mother. 
Nour-Banou burst into tears at the sight of her lion, and 
attested to SokoUi that Mourad was their common master. 
At these words, the vizier fell at the feet of the Sultan, and 
invoked heaven for the long life and the prosperity of the 
emperor. After the first effusions of tenderness between the 
mother and the son, " I am hungry," said Mourad to the 
officers of the palace, who had hastened to salute their new 
master; "bring me soanetbing to eat." These words, the 


first uttered without premeditation bj a Sultan after his 
aooeenon to the throne, made all those present turn pale. 
Oriental superstition attributed to these expressions a pro- 
phetic signification which was interpreted for or against the 
events of the reign. They were interpreted as a cry of 
ûunine raised by the people, and announcing sterility and 
scarcity. They were vermed by chance the year following. 

Meanwhile a more sinister and more certain presage was 
calling down at the very instant the reprobation of heavcai 
upon the empire. The law of the seraglio or the dynastic 
canon of Mahomet II. ordained the immolation, for the 
crime of public peril, of all the brothers of the Saltan on his 
ascending the throne. It is affirmed that Mourad, influenced 
by the Venetian Sultana Safiyé, and by his own repugnance 
to shedding innocent blood, had sworn to Safiyé to revoke 
this atrocious state butchery by his example, and to let his 
brothers live; but the mufti interpreter of the law, more 
implacable in his political interpretation than the prince 
himself in his own interest, persisted in issuing a fetwa or 
decision which interdicted the humanity or the pity of the 
Sultan. The ministers and the executioners, armed with this 
brief of the oracle of religion and justice, hastened to do 
violence to the humane scruples of the Sultan, in causing 
to be strangled the five princes of various a^es, sons of Selim 
II. and casting before daylight the five bodies on the carpet 
of the divan, beneath the eyes of Mourad. 

This stepping-stone of corpses must soon or late ingulf a 
throne which a state reason, perverted by a patriotism 
against nature, made to repose on such unspeakable iniqui^ 

The next day Mourad or Amuratklll., recognized with 
all the usual solemnities by religion, by the people, the army, 
attended the funeral of his father and went to weep upon 
the graves of the five brothers just assassinated in his name. 
He distributed, the third day after these sepultures, an 
imperial gratuity of one million and a half gold ducats to 
the troops and the grand officers of the empire. The Janis- 
saries received to themselves alone near a nullion of ducats — 
(about two millions of dollars). 

SokoUi, who had managed twice with equal authority 
and success ^e passage from one reign to anomer, was main- 
tained in the post of grand vizier rather by the policy than 
the affection of the Sultan. ThQ new court saw in him a 


man of too many past services to ask hk head, of too mneh 

{ower not to envy nis sitoatioiL The fikvorites of Amurath 
II. resolved; ih concert with the Sultanas, to endare for 
some time Sokolli by necessity, but to undermine him in the 
mind of his master, and bring him down by degrees from 
his supremacy to the rank of simple viiiers. Sokolli, like a 
man too sure t)f his fortune, abated nothing of his rigor o« of 
his duty toward the favorites, complotters of this league. 
He dared to prosecute the defberdar Ouwels, an intimate 
confidant of .^jnurath, for presumed malversation upon the 
treasury of his master. Ouweis triumphed in the suit, and 
humbled Sokolli by his triumph. The Janissaries and the 
people, spectators of this struggle between the grand viiier 
and the favorite, began to foresee the debilitation of the 
authority of the man who had upheld for eighteen years back 
the weight of the empire, and braved insolently a Sultan 
who was abandoning himself in his minister. 

The sedition so long suppressed broke out upon occasion 
of the police laws against the sale of wine in the taverns, 
laws renewed at the commencement of almost every reign. 
One day as Amurath passed in a caique on the Bosphorus 
before a Greek tavern full of drunken soldiers, the Janissa- 
ries, who recognized the Sultan, held up their goblets in their 
hands as in defiance of the penalty pronounced against 
drinkers of wine, and drank them off to the health of the 
Sultan. The grand vizier, informed of this outrage, pre- 
sented himself with the Sultan at the barracks to pumsh the 
guilty ; but the seditious, encouraged by the connivance of 
the Isivorites, covered with vociferations the voice of the 
^and vizier and the name even of the Sultan. The forced 
mipunity of the body was palliated feebly by the removal of 
the affa of the Janissaries. 

This function, the second in importance of the empire, 
was given to a Genoese renegade, named Cicala-Pasha, 
whilst a Calabrian ren^ade, Ochiali-Pasha (Eili^j-Ali), the 
savior of the remnant of the fleet at Lepanto, was appointed 
capitan-pasha. Pialé-Pasha, a Hungarian by birth, was 
vizier of the cupola ; Ahmed-Pasha, second vizier, was a 
Styrian ; Mohammed-Pasha, third vizier, an Austrian ; the 
chief of the eunuchs of the harem, Welzer, a Transylva- 
nian^ Sokolli himself, the grand vizier, was a Bosniac. 
Religion alone was the country common to all these men of 
different countries. In the Constantinople of tho Sultans 


as in the Rome of tbe popes, every fbreigner who was 
willing to combat for the doctrine was accounted a citizen and 
naturalized by the worship. It is to this universal naturali- 
zation of its servants from every race, that the empire has so 
long owed and still owes at this day its being so ably served by 
its public men.* 


The peace maintained by Sokolli was renewed for eight 
years with the emperor of Germany. The duke of TransyU 
vania, Stephen Baihori, protected by the Turks, was raised 
by the grand vizier to the throne of Poland. " You are 
not to molest Bathory, raised by me to the throne of the 
Poles," wrote the ^rand vizier in the name of Amurath to the 
emperor ; " I wIéÊ you to treat the Poles with the same 
respect as my other subjects. Roland is under my protec- 
tion ; I have ordered the nobles of that country to choose 
Bathory for their king. The Tartars one time made a king 
of Poland prisoner ; it is on that account that the Poles pay 
still a tribute to the Khan of the Tartars." Gonformably 
to this tradition and to this investiture, the ambassador of 
Poland, Sieniensky, signed a treaty of alliance, offensive and 
defensive, between Turkey and Poland, a treaty which 
sanctioned in one of its articles the tribute of the Poles to 
the Tartars. 

The republic of Venice, served by the influence of the 
Venetian Sultana Safîyé, obtained from Amurath and from 
the grand vizier the most liberal interpretations of its 
treaties and its fixations of limits with the Porte. 

Florence concluded likewise with Sokolli a treaty of firee 
navigation and reciprocal commerce. 

Spain herself solicited, through the ambassadors of Philip 
II., a treaty of peace and friendship with the Turks. This 
treaty, reduced to a truce of three years, was signed with 
repugnance and with disdain by Sokolli. 

' * This is a well observed and a well explained truih. Philosophers 
have lately noted that the duration of the Chnrch of Rome, that the 
veritable " rock of Peter," has been no other than the practice of select- 
ing its official agents on the sole principle of capcicUy, The same, though 
less remarked, is no less true of Turkey. In both, too, religi<m was in 
reality but a condition, not the cause, of choice. In the history of neither 
empire has any mention been ever heard of a native Komanism or a 
noHve Ottomanlsm. — Trantiator, 


England, a straager hitherto, on acooont of her situation, 
to all diplomacy with the Ottomans, contracted for the first 
time, through her merchants, business relations which soon 
became political, with SokoUi ; letters were exchanged between 
Queen Elizabeth and the Sultan. 

The Swiss also kept for the first time a Jewish agent to 
attend to the interests of their commerce at Constantinople. 

Sokolli sought to naturalize the sciences and the arts as 
much as peace and commerce in his country. The learned 
Seadeddin Lala, preceptor of Amurath III., seconded the 
grand yizier in these happy innoyations. They had in con- 
cert an observatory built in frotit of the gardens of the 
seraglio at Tophana, and called firom Egypt the illustrious 
astronomer Takieddin to perfect and popularize the knowl- 
edge of celestial phenomena among the Turks. But the 
antipathy of the priesthood to the sciences which explain 
nature otherwise than by oracles and by prodigies, forced the 
grand vizier, the preceptor and the astronomer to demolish 
their observatory as an attack upon the msyteries of heaven.* 
Takieddin, at Constantinople, had the fate of Ghillileo at 
Rome. The same age, in two opposite religions, saw the 
always unequal struggle of prejudice and of science. 

The enemies of Sokolli in the divan and in the harem 
fom^ited these popular charges of impiety against the great 
innovator. They attacked him first in his confidants before 
dealing their blows upon himself. The secretary of state, 
Feridoun, his devoted collaborator for three reigns, was 
banished to Belgrade. The aga of the Janissaries, Cicala, 
was Hkewise di£fgraced. Death took off at the same time 
from Sokolli two of his most £ûthful supporters in the state, 
Pialé-Pasha and the mufti Hamed. In fine a negro, Arab- 
Pasha, whom he had married to a favorite slave of his harem 
and who governed under his direction the kingdom of 
Cyprus, was massacred by his own troops. They brought to 
Sokolli the garments ci the negro, lacerated by a hundred 
sabre cuts. He wept with pity, imagining the agony which 
must have been undergone by his favorite. 

The duke of Naxos and of the Cyclades, Joseph Nassy, 
enriched beyond the dreams of even a Jew by the friendship 
of Selim II., died at this period at Constantinople. Sokolli, 

* Thî« is also the true import of the Chaldalc myth of the Tower of 
Babel, which was doubtless an astronomical observatoiy.— 2Vaf»»^aft>»*. 


of wlunn tbis adventurer had always been jealons, ordered 
that hia opulent heritage should devolve to the pubUo treas- 
ury. But the three defterdars or treasurers am>ointed by 
Sokolli to sequestrate the succession were accused of embez* 
slement by the enemies of the grand vizier, and tortured to 
make them confess their pretended spoliation. Another of 
his clients, Michael Cantaoaiene, a Greek of the impmal 
family of Byzantium and rival of another G-reek named 
Paledlogus, another remnant of the dynasties of the Byian- 
tineS) was handed for presumed malversation before the gate 
of SokoUi, as if to râect upon the protector the crime and 
in&my of the punished protégé. In fine, the beloved 
nephew of Sokolli, Mustapha-Pi^a, governor of Of<ai and 
of Turkish Hungary, was murdered at Ofen by Ferhad- 
Pasha, grand equerry of the Sultan, in €Le midst of his 
escort of fifty horsemen, who did not dare to draw a sword in 
his defence. 

These presages saddened Sokolli without diverting him 
from the duties of the government ; he expected to perish, 
but he wished that death should find him in the tackle of the 
empire. One of Jbhe last days of October, 1578, he had read 
to him by Hassan- Aga, his librarian, the history of the first 
reigns of the monarchy. The reader having read the narra- 
tive of the battle of Oassova against the Servians and the 
tragic and sudden death of Amurath I., assassinated on the 
field of battle after the victory by the patriot Servian 
Milosch Kabilowitch, Sokolli stopped Hassan with a gesture 
at this passage of the history, recited piously the first Soura 
of the Horan for the soul of the assassinated Sultan, and 
cried with a fervor of presentiment like an internal revela- 
tion, ^< May the Almighty accord me such a death 1 " 

The foUowing day, after having held his customary audi- 
ence at the paliuse of the Porte, and employed the rest of 
the day at affairs of state, Sokolli, returning home, opened 
still, as was his habit, his divan to all the Ottomans without 
distinction who had justice or favor to ask of the grand 
vizier. At the moment when he extended his hand to an 
unknown person, clad in the costume of a dervish, who pre- 
sented him a petition to read, the false dervish, drawing a 
poniard from under his cloak, plunged it to the hilt into the 
breast of the ^rand vizier. Sokolli, carrying instinctively 
his hand to his yatagan to defend himself, had not the 
str^igth to seize it, and fell dead in the way he desired, like 


Caasar, withomt uttering a word. The pretended dervish 
was a Dalmatian fellow countryman of Sokolli, a ferocious 
race which gives life for life without pity and without fear. 
He alleged as the motive of his crime revenge for an injus- 
tice of the grand vizier, who decided against him a suit for 
property in a feudal holding in Bosnia. Public opinion sus- 
pected, but without proo^ the instigation of the cruel 
Mustapha-Pasha, the executioner of Cyprus, in this crime. 
Amurath III. was perhaps glad of it, but not an accomplice. 
The assassin avowed nothing but his hatred. He was dis- 
membered the following day by four horses, each carrying off 
one of the limbs from his lacerated body. 

Thus disappeared the man who had been, during three 
reigns, the light, the wisdom 'and the strength of the empira 
History praises him better than vain words. He elevated 
the empire to its apogee, and his death marks the first day of 
its decline. 

Mohammed-Sokolli had had no children by the Sultana 
Esma, the sister of the Sultan, whom his master had given 
him in marriage. The first wife whom he had married had 
left him two sons, who did not inherit his immense wealth. 
Forced to repudiate this wife whom he loved, in receiving into 
his house a princess of the imperial blood, he had regretted all 
his life that his merit and his glory had drawn upon him the 
regards and the preferences of Sultana-Esma, whose ugliness 
and deformity presaged him no heirs. His inordinate ridies, 
not ]»roportionable to his services, but in proportion to the 
humbleness of his origin, reverted at his death to the treas- 
ury of the Sultan. 

He left the empire at peace with the whole earth except- 
ing Persia. 

Let us trace back . for some years the ceaseless course of 
Persian anarchy, to understand the motives, the occasions 
and the vicissitudes of this war. The history of Persia is 
so parallel with the history of Turkey, that one of these 
nations cannot be painted without delineating the other. 


The three wars of Selim and of Soliman the Great against 
Persia had popularized the dynasty of the Sophis, of whom 
we have related the religious origin. In Asia, as in Europe, 
the people cease to fight for dynastic rivalries, while they 


ûAt for religion or for nationality. The Schah (or ihe 
kine) Tahmasp owed a prolonged dominion to the efforts of 
Soliman II. to dethrone him. He was not a great man, but 
the good fortune of his reign was to have been the champion 
of menaced Persia. 

At his death he designated among his ûve sons Hjder 
Mirza to succeed him. ITjrder, a favorite of his father, had 
been kept near him at Ispahan, to be at hand to seize the 
throne, whilst the other brothers, according to the usage of 
the East, were relegated, exiled from the court, into distant 

The policy, at onoe suspicious and imprudent, of ^e 
Schahs, gave those infant princes in guard and tutelage to 
the great chieftains of the tribes who composed the Persian 
nation. These tribe chie& at the death of the Schahs became 
frequently thus promoters and supporters of those rival com- 
petitors for the throne of their father. 

Young Hyder, master of the palace, of the guard, of the 
ministers and the treasures of Tahmasp, had no difficulty in 
getting himself proclaimed king in the capital. But the 
hatred of a woman cost him, a few days after, the throne and 
his life. This woman, of Circassian race, of whom the 
beauty, courage and ambition exercised an influence almost 
absolute upon the government of Persia, was the celebrated 
Peridjan-Khan, a daughter of the Schah who had just died. 
She was the niece of Schem-Khal, chief of a Circassian 
tribe in the service of Persia. Schem-Khal and Peridjan 
had espoused the pretensions of another son of Tahmasp 
named Ismael-Mirza, who had languished in prison for over 
twenty years. 

At the moment when the death of Tahmasp delivered 
the princes, without support in the palace, to the mercy and 
' perhaps the vengeance of the new Schah, she asked an audi- 
ence of this prince, and throwing herself in mourning and 
in tears at his feet, saluted him king of Persia : " Hitherto," 
said to him this crafty woman, of whom the charms gave 
relief to the eloquence, " you had thought me opposed to 
your elevation to the throne. This was to me a means of 
knowing the projects of your rivals and of defeating them. 
Regard me now as the most sure and most devoted of your 

Hyder, who knew the genius and the adroitness of this 
woman, thought himself lucky in purchasing her to his cause 


by pardon and by the promise of an influence wbieb e^onld 
survive the life of his father. " If you will only," replied he, 
" gain your uncle Schem-Khal and the partisans of my brother 
Ismael, the throne of Persia will be ours without contesta- 
tion, and you will reign with me in the palace of Ispahan." — 
" Enough," replied Peridjan, " leave me to go meet and flatter 
my uncle, and I answer to you for the empire." 

Hyder, deceived by the language of his sister, permitted 
her to set out for the camp of the Circassian. She feigned 
to negotiate with Schem-Khal and the friends of Ismael, 
returned with them to Ispahan, accompanied by a body of 
Circassian knights devoted, wrote she, to the cause of the 
new SohaL 

Nevertheless Hyder, distrustful of Schem-Khal, refdsed 
to open to him the capital and the palace. The Circassians 
entered it at night by a gate of the garden delivered to them 
by Peridjan, through her accomplices of the seraglio. Hyder, 
on report of the entrance of the Circassians into the garden, 
tried to escape in the disguise of a woman to run and throw 
himself into -the barrack of his guards. But Schem-Khal, 
who espied him, recognized him, tore off his veil, and had 
him poniarded on the spot by one of his slaves. The (Geor- 
gians who formed the guard of the king of Persia ran to 
the relief of the sovereign ; Schem-Khal, advancing to meet 
them, threw them the head of the king. Atv this sight they 
laid down their arms. Ismael, imprisoned hitherto in the 
fortress of Al-Mout, mounted the tlurone which was procured 
him by the perfidy of a woman. 

He remained upon it only a sufficient time to befoul it 
by his vices, and to ensanguine it by the massacre of all his 
brothers, shut up together in the fortress of Cazwin. One 
alone was exempted, through contempt rather than from 
pity; it was Mohammed-Mirza, eldest son of Tahmasp, 
blind from his birth, and who from this infirmity was deemed 
incapable of ever aspiring to'the throne. 

But this blind prince had two sons, of whom the one, 
Hamza-Mirza, was nominal governor of the city and the 
province of Schiraz; the other, Abbas-Mirza, still a child, 
was confided to the tribe chief Ali-Khouli-Khan, one of the 
most potent warriors of Persia. Ismael sent orders to the 


military commandant of Schiraz and to Ali-Khouli-Khan ta 
massacre immediately these two princes. An accident saved 
them ; the courier wno bore the decree of death having been 
retarded by a fall of his horse, another courier, although scft 
out a day later from Ispahan, arrived an hour before the 
messenger of death. * This second courier brought to Schiraz 
and to Ali-Khouli-Khan the news of the death of Schah- 
Ismael. This death was worthy of his life. It remains a' 
mystery of debauchery and crime. 

One night, as he ran dis^ised about the streets of Ispa- 
han, from tavern to tavern, mdulging his depraved appetites 
for wine and other orgies with the companions of his 
vices, his return was awaited for until midnight at the 
palace. Some confidential servants, charged to watch at a 
distance over his life, often compromitted in nocturnal brawls, 
revealed that they had seen him enter before dawn the house 
of his favorite. This favorite was a young merchant of 
Ispahan who dealt in liquors and confectionery. Upon this 
indication, the sister of Ismael came forth from the palace 
and had the house of the merchant surrounded respectftilly in 
order to envelop the Schah with his guards upon awaking. 
But uneasy toward the cl6se of the day at the silence and 
stillness oi the inmates, she ordered the doors to be forced 
and the apartments to be visited. The king was discovered 
in a chamber of the upper story under lock. The door 
broken in showed Ismael dead upon a bed, where his com- 
panion lay alongside of him in the insensibility of drunken- 
ness. Brought back to life by^the physicians, the favorite 
of Ismael related that after having drunk all night of wine 
and spirits, the king, as was his custom, completed the 
drunkenness by swallowing opium pills. The box in which 
he carried these pills, usually shut with a seal which he alone 
broke, was not sealed this day. The companion of debauch 
of the prince declared that he had remarked this to him, 
bidding him beware of poison ; but the prince replied to 
him that he had seen it opened before him by a woman of 
his harem charged to watch over his aliments. It was 
thence concluded, with or without grounds, that poison had 
abridged the life of the king. But the infamy of his life 
and of his death, and the joy of being delivered from his 
tyranny, did not allow the search of criminality in an end 
which app^ed to all a deliverance. 

The blind Mohammed-Mirza took the place of Ismael 


II. by right of sole survivor of the sons of Schah TahmaiE^. 
His first act was an ingratitude and an injustice : he 
strangled his sister Peridjan, who had betrayed Hyder to 
crown Ismael. His vizier Mirza-Suleïman governed Persia 
in his name. An object of envy and of hatred to the chief- 
tains of tribes who surrounded the prince and partitioned 
among them the kingdom, this vizier had already repulsed 
gloriously the invasion of the Turks under Sinan-Pasha. 
The grand vizier SokoUi, displeased with the slowness of 
the Persian war, and eager especially to send away firom 
Constantinople Mustapha-Pasha, the vanquisher of« Cyprus, 
had appointed this rival in influence seraskier or generalis- 
simo of the army. Mustapha-Pasha, thenceforth exercised 
in high warfare by ten years' command, attacked the Per- 
sians through the table-land of Georgia, a province subject, 
but ill assimilated, to Persia. The Ottomans were sure of 
finding there, as in the Crimea and in Circassia, more auxil- 
iaries than enemies. 

Georgia is the ancient Iberia of the Greeks and the 
Romans. The ruggedness of its mountains, the depths of 
its forests, the abundance of its waters, the charm of its 
valleys, the energy of its inhabitants, but above all the incom- 
parable beauty of its women, make its strength, its misfor- 
tune, and its celebrity in the East. A queen almost fabulous 
named Nino introduced nascent Christianiiy into the kingdom^ 
by her prodigies, while Constantino was imposing it by 
arms upon all the countries tributary to the Greeks and to 
the Eomans around the Black Sea. Two vine sprouts, tied 
together in the form of a cross, were at once the sceptre and 
the miraculous wand of this magical princess. Another 
queen of Georgia, Tamar, surprised during sleep by her 
equerry David Bagration, resolved to avenge herself of the 
love of this servant by a thousand trials and a thousand 
tortures. The culprit having triumphed over all the dangers, 
the queen concluded to marry him. The children of this 
pardoned violence reigned for generations over Georgia. 
The daughter of Tamar, the Princess Roussoudan, more 
beautiful still than her mother, sustained three wars against 
the sovereigns of Khorassan, who sought to annex Georgia 
by marrying the heiress of the kingdom. 

The Persians place in Georgia the birth of the beautiful 
and tender Schirin, the heroine of all their epic and elegiac 
poetry. Power was habitually mingled with seduction in 


those queens; it was the romantic kingdom of beantj, 
governed by love and seryed by heroism. 


King David, at the time of Amurath III., reigned oyer 
Tiflis, and oyer the profound yalleys of Georgia wmch serve 
as avenues to Persia. His daughter, although Christian, 
had been given in marriage to Schah Tahmasp, in pledge of 
intimate alliance against the Turks. David, after an ill- 
matched battle against the seraskier Mustapha-Pasha, fled 
from his capital The sovereign prince of Imiretta, the other 
half of C^eorgia, joined the vanquishers to get possession 
from them of T^is. Mustapha did not confide in him 
sufficiently to satisfy completely his ambition. He joined 
only a few provinces to Imiretta and gave Tiflis in fee to 
Mohammed-Fasha, one of his generals, son of the famous 
Ferhad-Pasha the cripple. He left in it a Turkish garrison 
of ten thousand men to guard against the unsubmitted 
Georgians this key of Persia, while he pursued his subjuga- 
tion to a distance in its provinces. 

Tiflis, at the present day usurped by the Russians, a city 
picturesque, warlike, commercial, opulent, was, as well as the 
ancient Bidlis, built by Alexander the Great Paganism, 
Christianity, Islamism, covered by turns its hillocks and the 
banks of its rivers with ruins and with monuments, which 
attest the grandeur and the decay of a capital built on the 
beaten route of all the conquerors. 

Mustapha, resting upon Tiflis, ^ent his two hundred 
thousand combatants into Georgia and mto the Caucasus, and 
by victory annexed to the Turkish empire these provinces 
of Persia. All the tribe chiefs recognized themselves allies 
or tributaries of the Ottomans. But four armies advanced 
at once from the. interior of Persia to dispute with the Turks 
their conquests ; one upon Bagdad, another upon Erzeroum, 
two upon Tiflis. One of the two latter was, according to 
the example of the Georgian and the Circassian armies, 
commanded by a woman, the favorite of the Schah of Persia, 
brought up, like the famous Peridjan, to the profession of 
arms, and inspiring, by her courage and beauty, the Persians 
with heroism. She defeated the right wing of the Turks 
towards Erzeroum, slew the general who commanded it, and 
threw back the enemy into the spows on the heights of 


the Caucasus. During this triumph sixty thousand Persians 
succumbed in a three days' battle against Othman-Pasha in 
the province of Shirwan. Ten thousand severed heads were 
despatched by Othman-Pasha, in attestation of his victory, 
to the seraskier at Tiflis. The blind king, Mohammed- 
Schah, fled before him from province to province. Winter 
and famine succored him by two scourges that fought for the 

Tiflis, abandoned to itself for want of provisions, was 
invested by the Persians. Mustapha- Pasha retired to Kars 
and employed the winter and the spring in reconstructing 
and fortifying this city, since become a formidable bulwark 
of the empire towards Georgia. In the spring, Hassan-Pasha, 
son of the illustrious vizier, relieved and provisioned Tiflis. 
Ouzdemir- Othman-Pasha, who had been just betrothed to a 
daughter of the Circassian chief, Schem-Khal, the murderer 
of Hyder and the uncle of Peridjan, had cut off, at a fes- 
tival, the head of his father-in-law. Schem-Khal, habituated 
to the ordinary treacheries of his race, commenced conspiring 
against the Turks, to whom he had just sold the Persians. 

The Turks meanwhile were reinforced by an auxiliary 
army of forty thousand Tartars of the Crimea, commanded 
by a prince of their royal house, Adil-Gheraï. Adil, a 
young, beautiful, heroic, and fascinating prince, was made 
prisoner by the Persians in a sally at the siege of Schirwan. 
The blind king, Mohammed-Schah, whose interest it was to 
flatter the Tartars in order to detach them from the Turks, 
received the prisoner at his court as a guest rather than an 
enemy. The mind of Adil- Khan seduced the mother of the 
Schah, a woman of superior intellect, who was the soul of the 
government concealed in the harem ; his beauty seduced the 
youngest sister of the king. The amours of the Tartar 
prince and the Sultana came to light. Indignant Persia saw 
in the matter the debasement of the king, the complicity of 
his mother, the treason of his sister, the danger of the 
country, sold by the passion of two women to the enemy. 
The Kouroudjis, à sort of Persian Janissaries, mutinied, 
broke into the harem, tore from thence Adil- Khan and the 
princess and strangled them in presence of the Schah, who 
asked them in vain for the life of his sister and of his cap- 
tive. The mother of the king, whom they had spared, did 
not leave them to wait long for her vengeance. The Kour- 
oudjis, some days after their revolt, called one by one into a 
VoT,. III.— 4 


court of the palaoe to receive a gratification, were butchered 
to the last man by executioners under the eyes of the king 
and his mother, concealed behind some tent-curtains. 

The heart of Persia was dissolving in these intrigues of 
the seraglio and these pretorian seditions, while the Turks 
and the Tartars were detaching slowly its members from the 
body of the empire. The grand vizier SokoUi, discontented 
with the sloth of Mustapha who was prolonging this eternal 
campaign of Persia, had despatched only a few days before 
his death a fresh army into Georgia under the command of 
Sinan-Pasha, one of the first warriors of the empire. Scarce 
had Sinan touched upon the frontiers of Persia when he 
was recalled as ffrand vizier to Constantinople in place of 
Ahmed, who had for a few days succeeded SokollL The 
seraskier, Mustapha-Pasha, had always flattered himself with 
succeeding his rival Sokolli in the post of grand vizier. 
His disappointed ambition, or the poison which he took, it is 
said, through despair in not attaining the object of his life, 
took him off suddenly from the army. He died imbrued 
with the blood of Cyprus, and dishonored by the executions 
of the defenders of Famagosta. His wealth, his public 
charities and his mosques could never vindicate his memory, 
and only served to perpetuate his disgrace with his name. 


Sinan, appointed grand vizier, wished in vain to march 
upon Tauris ; the army, weary of inaction, refused to follow 
him. He was forced to yield to the disgust of his generals, 
to canton his troops in the valleys of Tiflis, of Erzeroum, 
of Kars, and to return to Constantinople without other 
result than negotiations merely entered upon with Persia. 
An ambassador of the blind Schah, accompanied by as many 
servants as there are days in the year, attended Sinan to 

Pending these negotiations, the army was commanded by 
Mohammed-Pasha, nephew of Mustapha-Pasha, the deceased 
seraskier. Mohammed was vanquished in the plain of Gori 
not far from Tiflis by eighty thousand Persians. Imputing 
his defeat to his colleague Mustapha-Minotschir, who com- 
manded a corps of the army, he meant to have him assassi- 
nated in open divan. Suspecting his murder, at the first 
movement of the kyaya to seize him, Mustapha cleft his 


head with a blow of his sabre, wounded with another blow 
ihe pasha of Diarbekir who was attending the council, and 
plunged five times his poniard into the body of the seraskier. 
Then rushing sabre in hand from the tent and calling his 
corps of troops to avenge him, he separated himself from 
the army, fell back upon Amasia, and submitted himself to 
the justice of the Sultan. Mohammed, who survived his 
wounds, continued his retreat upon Kars. 


These reverses and this tediousness humiliated the young 
Amurath III. Sinan, on arriving at Constantinople, con- 
vinced him that the presence of the Sultan in the army could 
alone re-establish discipline and restore their ascendency on 
the frontiers of Persia. The Sultana Nour-Banou, mother 
of Amurath, and his Venetian wife Safiyé, trembling to lose 
their sway over the son and the husband during a campaign 
which would remove him from the influence of the harem, 
were indignant against the grand vizier. They imparted 
their resentments to the Sultan, whom the languors of the 
seraglio had ill prepared for tho life of a camp. The empire 
was to him but the swarm of women and of eunuchs who 
peopled his kiosks and his gardens. He got embittered 
against a vizier who spoke to him of glory. He disguised 
the real motive of his anger under the reproach of having 
opened negotiations with Persia instead of vanquishing. He 
accused Sinan of having listened to propositions to restore 
Georgia to Persia : " Every country once trodden by the 
foot of the Sultan's horse belongs to the Sultan," repeated 
the enemies of Sinan. Amurath exiled him to Mulghara, to 
punish him for an advice which alarmed his effeminacy. 

The Croat, Siawousch-Pasha, was appointed grand vizier. 
Ferhad, former cook of the seraglio, become soldier by in- 
stinct and general by intrigue, set out with the purpose of 
browbeating fortune in Persia, at the head of sixty thousand 
Janissaries, of ten thousand sappers, and three thousand 
pieces of cannon, for the demolition of walls. He com- 
menced by fortifying Erivan, the gate of Persia on that 
side. Erivan had received its origin and its name from a 
merchant who followed the army of Timour, and who had 
obtained from this conqueror the privilege of cultivating 
rice in the watered and fertile valley which at present feeds 


the frontiers of two empires. He made it an adranced capi* 
tal of Turkey, and pursued bis complete invasion of Georgia. 
A parallel expedition by sea and by land along the coasts 
of the Black Sea under Othman-Pasha, advanced upon Caffa 
in the peninsula of the Crimea. A march of eighty days 
across the Don and the steppes of Tartary had brought the 
expedition as far as Derbend. The combined army of the 
Turks, of the Circassians and of the Tartars, here passed the 
winter, sheltered from the snows under huts of reeds. In 
spring, Othman-Pasha came forth from Derbend, to give a 
decisive battle to the Persians. They ran in a body to guard 
this menaced flank of their nation, open through the steppes 
of the Caspian Sea. The number of the Turks, Circassians, 
Georgians, and Tartars of Othman, issuing from their barracks 
of rushes or their burrows of earth, was such, that Othman 
employed three whole days in seeing them defile before the 

fate of Derbend. Four days after his army arrived on the 
ank of the river Amour. 

The Persians, equally numerous, commanded by their old 

feneral, Iman-Kouli-Khan, awaited him upon the other bank. 
)thman, mounted on a black horse, celebrated for his age and 
for his impetuosity at the sight of arms, and which he had 
ridden for thirty years, was himself the first to swim across the 
river, followed by an entire army of cavalry. The Persians, 
masters of contiguous prominences which surrounded like 
two promontories the plain beyond the river, did not oppose 
the passage of the Turks. They believed themselves victors 
by the mere strength of the situation. They confidently 
awaited daylight to show them their victory. 

Othman did not give them time, that first stake of battles. 
At nightfall, two hundred thousand torches, kindled of a 
sudden in the hands of his cavalry, illuminated the plain, and 
showed the Persians his columns of attack ready to mount 
to the storming of their positions. The Persians lit up like- 
wise their myriads of torches for combat. The neighing 
of the black charger of Othman, heard by the whole army, 
appeared to the Turks a signal and a certain omen of the 
victory. It was but a charge of two hundred thousand 
cavalry, dashed against each other in the smoke of torches 
at the dead of night. Thirty thousand Persians dead, twenty 
thousand prisoners, a pyramid of ten thousand heads ele- 
vated by Othman on the banks of the river, were the monu- 
ments of this " Battle of the Torches." 


After having porsned the enemy as far as Bakou and 
fortified that city, an advanced bastion of the Caucasus to- 
wards Persia, Othman led back his troops across the valleys of 
these Alps as far as Kaulu, that is to say, the river of blood. 
There the Kussians, who watched over Persia as a prey they 
might themselves one day devour, attacked the retreating 
army of Othman on the passage of the river, and burned 
before it the steppes to deprive the horses of grass. A 
thousand horses perished daily of hunger, through this 
manoeuvre of the Russians. At length, the waters of the 
Kbuban broke through the ice which covered this river, and 
the forests of Timar sheltered and reanimated the army. 
Othman returned, after seven months of battles and marches, 
to Ca£^, whence he had set out. 

The Tartars of the Crimea, who had seconded his ex- 
pedition, did not all see him without alarm in the heart of 
their peninsula. This was torn by the intestine dissensions 
of different princes of the dynasty of Gheraï, who disputed 
for the sovereignty of their race. Dewlet-Gheraï, their last 
Khan, had just died. He was the inveterate and fortunate 
enemy of the Russians. He had carried his hordes as far as 
Moscow and burned that capital, which owes its renown to 
its destructions by fire, and which revives more young and 
vast from its ashes. He meant to open upon this city a more 
spacious and easy route, by cutting a canal from the Volga 
to the Don, an eternal menace to the heart of Eussia. He 
left at his death eighteen sons. 

The Tartars, to prevent the inconveniences inherent in 
patriarchal governments, which are the accidental incapacity 
of the hereditary prince, or his infirmities of mind, or his old 
age, and to ensure at the same time the continuity of their 
policy internal and external, have an institution almost anal- 
ogous to that of the grand vizier in Turkey. The reigning 
prince is obliged, on ascending the throne, to choose for vizier 
(kalgha) the eldest of his brothers, or his heir-presumptive, 
designated by the constitution of Genghis- Khan. The new 
Khan, Mohammed Gheraï, the eldest of the eighteen princes, 
constrained by the constitution to appoint his eldest brother 
vizier, but inclined by preference to give the place to the 
youngest brother, Seadet-Gheraï, named this young favorite 
prince Noureddin (light of the faith), and assigned him in 
this title some functions and revenues which were a perilous 
innovation in the State. 


Tonng Noareddin was of the part? who wish^ to utilize 
Persia, and who dissuaded the Khan from sending reinforce* 
ments of horse to Othman-Pasha. He promised three 
hundred thousand, hut he continually sought new pretexts to 
avoid furnishing them to the Ottoman general. The Sulian 
Amurath III. and the grand viiier Biawousoh-Pasha, got 
offended at these delays, and protested against the new and 
illegal institution of Noureddin, in the name of the constitu- 
tion of Gengis-Khan, of which the Turks were the surveil- 
lants and the avengers. 

Othman-Pasha, returning to the Crimea after a short 
voyage to Constantinople, where he had heen to take orders 
from the grand viiier, deposed, in the name of his sovereign, 
the reigmng Khan, Mohammed-Gheraï. In the natural 
order of succession, Alp-Gheraï, the second of the sons, 
should have succeeded to Mohammed ; hut the Turks gave 
the investiture to another of the hrothers named Islam- 
Gheraï, who was then living at Constantinople in a convent 
under the hahit of a dervish. Islam-Ghera!, sustained hy 
the Turks, deharked in the Crimea in the midst of an entire 
army of Tartars greedy of chaûge, who advanced on horse- 
back into the very sea to surround with their acclamations the 
vessel that conveyed him. Mohammed-Gheraï, thus ahtm- 
doned hy his people, repudiated hy the Turks, fled into the 
deserts with his family and sixty horsemen faithful to his 
misfortunes. The dervish Islam-Gheraï gave the title of 
kalgha to Alp-Gheraï, who pursued from step to step his fugi- 
tive brother, and, getting possession of him, slew him with Us 
own hand, as also his chudren. The entire Crimea, purged of 
the princes favorable to the Persians, fell more and more into 
the dependence of the Porte. Othman-Pasha, by this revolu- 
tion on the throne, had conquered it a second time to his nation. 

Armenia, Georgia, Circassia, and Caspian Tartary, had dis- 
mantled, by the hand of Othman, the Persian empire of the 
bulwarks and the natural allies who protected it immemori- 
ally against the Ottomans. Never since Belisarius, under 
Justinian, had the lieutenant of an empire, in only three 
campaigns, brought off so rich a plunder to his master. 


The reception of Othman on his return with the army 
to Constantinople was worthy of his services. Amurath III. 


had yalKiaished from tlie lap of his pleasures ; he proudly 
appropriated the yictories of his general The character, no 
less modest thtm intrepid, of the yanquisher of Persia and 
of Georgia inspired no jealousy in Siawousch-Pasha. The 
grand yizier knew that Othman was a soldier without other 
ambition than glory. The Sultanas Nour-Banou and Safiyô 
congratulated themselyes on a triumph against the schis- 
matics, which enhanced their influence oyer the mind of the 
true belieyers. No distant war henceforward threatened 
the harem with the absence of the soyereign enslayed to 
iheir affection. They presided themselyes oyer the honors 
which the Sultan wi^ed to pay his lieutenant when Othmaa 
made his solemn entry into Constantinople. This entry was 
a triumph comparable to those of the Eomans. 

The 10th of July, 1684, Amurath III. adyanoed with his 
court, his yiziers and his warriors, for the purpose of meeting 
with Othman, to an imperial kiosk named Yali Koeschk, on 
the banks of the Bosphorus. "Be seated, Othman,'^ said 
the Sultan to him on his appearance in the hall, " and receiye 
the welcome of thy master and of thy country into my 

Othman, without appearing to haye understood this lan- 
guage, unprecedented from the lips of a padischah, prostrated 
himself, ^sed the ground, and pressed to his lips the skirt 
of the imperial mantle. << Be seated, Othman," repeated 
Amurath. Othman, in obedience, made the gesture of 
sitting down, but rose at once without haying touched the 
carpet of the Sultan. Three times Amurath renewed the 
order to him to take a seat on the diyan ; three times Oth- 
man feigned to obey through deference, but rose up instantly 
through modesty. At the fourth injunction to be seated, the 
yaaquisher of Persia obeyed, and kept his seat by the 
repeated order of his soyereign. 

" Now relate to me at leisure thy lonç campaigns, Oth- 
man," said the Sultan, motioning away with the hand the 
crowd of courtiers, to listen to the narratiye of his general. 
Othman related the fatigues, the reyerses and the yictories 
of the army in Georgia, in Circassia, and its eighty days' 
march into the Steppes of Tartary to leach Derbend. When 
he had described the battle of the Torches, the flight of the 


PersiaQS, and the pyramids of heads erected on the bank of 
the Amour : " Thou hast conducted thyself like a prudent 
as well as a brave general," cried the emperor ; and detach- 
ing from his own turban the heron plume enchased in an 
agraffe of diamonds, he. set it himself upon the turban of 

The general, interrupted by this favor, of which the 
enthusiasm of the padischah exalted the value, continued the 
history of his campaigns. At the recital of his victory over 
Hamza-Mirza, brother of the blind king of Persia : ^^ It is 
proper that thou also receive the price of this from the hand 
of him for whom thou foughtest," said Amurath. He drew 
from his girdle his poniard with the hilt enriched with 
precious stones, and passed it into the girdle of Othman. 

At the portraiture of the defeat of Iman-Kouli-Khan, 
the veteran general of the Schah of Persia, the Sultan 
detached the second heron plume that waved upon his turban 
in a knot of sapphires, and decorated with it the turban of 
the vanquisher of Iman-Kouli-Khan. In fine, when Oth- 
man had recounted the treacheries of the Tartars against his 
army in the Crimea, on his third campaign, the dethronement 
and the death of the khan, the inauguration of the dervish 
upon the throne, and the indissoluble subjection of Grim 
Tartary to the sons of Othman : " It is too much," cried 
Amurath, lifting his hands above his head, as if to elevate 
his gratitude to heaven, author of so many benedictions on 
his reign. " May thy face, Othman, be for ever white and 
dazzling in the two worlds of Europe and of Asia I May 
God, who assists and avenges thee, be always propitious! 
May victory follow thee wherever thy black horse shall 
bear thee I May'st thou be, in paradise, seated in the same 
kiosk and at the same table as he of our ancestors whose 
name thou bearest, the Kalif Othman, son of Affan! and 
may'&t thou, in awaiting the immortal life, increase unceas- 
ingly in this earthly life in power and glory during many 
years ! " 

At these words, and on a gesture of the Sultan, the high 
chamberlain led Othman into an apartment of the kiosk, 
where he was stript to the shirt by slaves of all the clothes 
he wore on entering the palace and dressed in the apparel and 
arms of the Sultan himself. In this new costume, which 
made him equal in exterior to the padischah, Othman re- 
entered to return thanks to his master. 


The conversation and the recital of the campaigns of 
Persia lasted for one half a summer's day. Thé Sultan had 
prolonged it on design by his interrogations, beyond the 
ordinary length of the longest recitals^ to test hb general 
'^ Othman has been reported to me," said he on quitting the 
kiosk, as intoxicating himself with opium and brutalizing 
thus his intellect ; I suspect him no longer of this vice, since 
he has been able to maintain without fatigue and without 
interruption a conversation and a narrative which have 
endured for six hours." 

Othman in fact used to stimulate his exhausted spirits 
during his campaigns by the use, sometimes excessive, of 
wine. After having drank some goblets of this liquor with 
his favorites beneath his tent, he used to lay his head on the 
cushion and be lulled to sleep by the voice of the singers. 
Then awaking of himself, at the prescribed hour (two hours 
after sunset), he performed his religious ablutions and said 
his prayer, shedding tears of contrition for his faults, and 
resuming labor or slumber according to leisure or to busi* 
ness. The conviction of the sobriety of Othman which 
resulted to the Sultan from that test, determined Amurath 
to commit the government to the predestined personage who 
had so happily conducted the war. Siawousch-Pasha was 
dismissed without disgrace. Othman was appointed grand 
vizier. His installation in this dignity, accompanied by 
unexampled honors, was but a continuation of his triumph 
on the day of his entry into the capital. 

Amurath III., despite his effeminacy, knew how to reign, 
since he knew how to thus recompense the hero of his nation. 
But in the bosom of his external prosperities, this prince 
was not happy. His infirmities of mind increased with his 
disorders. His mother and the intendant of his pleasures, 
Djanfeda, did not cease to present in his harem new victims 
to his caprices. He changed women oftener than the muez- 
zin cries the hour. His children multiplied. His very joys 
at the birth of his sons were dashed with sadness. One day 
as he conversed with one of his odalisques who was about to 
become a mother, " Of what use is it to you, Sultan, to be 
made a father ? " said this slave, alluding to the inevitable 
murder of the male children of the harem ; " your sons are 
not destined to live upon the earth, but to people the 

Vol. III.- 



The rivalriea of influence and of favor which agitated his 
harem were reverberated to the divan. The mother of 
Amorath III» and hia wife the Sultana Khasseki Safiyé were 
not always of a mind in recommending to him the same 
favorites. His mother and his sister protected Siawousch- 
Pasha ; Safiyé accused Siawousch of laboring to take the 
throne from her son Mohammed in order to prepare the 
empire for the sons which he had had himself by the Sultana 
his wife, the fevorite sister of the Sultan.* 

The death of the Sultana mother, Nour-Banou, at the 
Juncture of the return of Othman from Persia, shook the 
influence of Siawousch. The Venetian wife, Safiyé, although 
suspected of having hastened by poison the death of her 
mother-in-law, reigned henceforth without a rival over the 
mind of Amurath. Another favorite of the prince, Ibrahim, 
still remote from the summit of public honors, was the 
secret rival and often the obstacle of the grand viaiers. 

The harem had its factions ; they exacted immense sums 
from the grand vizier» The Sultana Validé had two thou- 
sand gold ducats independently of the prodigalities of 
the favorites of the day. Three women foreign to the 
harem of Amurath shared among them the dominion of his 
feeble understanding. One was that Djanfeda-Kadoun of 
whom we have already spoken, and whom Nour-Banou, the 
Sultan's mother, had recommended to him in dying' as alone 
capable of filling the place of herself in the administration 
of his feminine household; the second was the pretended 
prophetess Baziyé, a crafty and beautiful woman, of whom 
accident had sometimes verified the words and the philtres. 
Smitten with a gardener of the seraglio named Schoudsehaa, 
she had elevated him by her intrigues to the domestic digni- 
ties of the court ; the third was the Jewess Kira, a huckster 
of the bazaar, whom her commerce of stuffs and jewelry for 
the Sultanas introduced freely to the interior of the harem, 
and who thus made herself a go-between in all the intrigues 
of love and of ambition. 

Three daughters of Selim II., sisters of the reigning 

* The anihor had related that all male offspriog of the sisters and 
the daughters of the reigniog Sultans were put to death at hirth. He 
forgets then to explain if the law had been repealed, or if the present 
case of its infraction be an exception. — Translator* 


Saltan, disputed with the Sultana Safijé the favor of their 
brother. They were the widow of the grand vizier Sokolli, 
the widow of the capitan-pasha Piale, and the princess their 
sister who had married Siawousch. Another Sultana, retired 
into the old seraglio, Mihrmah, daughter of Soliman, brought 
up two nieces of Amurath. She married the first of these 
grand-daughters of Soliman to the Genoese renegade Cicala, 
a deserter of the great family of the Dorias of Genoa, and 
who in abjuring their faith and their country, had transported 
into the East their heroism. Death having taken from Cicala 
the first of his wives of the blood of Soliman, the Sultana 
Mihrmah had given him the second. 

These princesses, whom their kinship with the Sultan 
introduced incessantly into the palace, filled it with their 
intrigues and with their passions. Esma, widow of Sokolli, 
although ill-favored by nature, wished to get married a 
second time, and to one of the most accomplished of the 
pashas in body and mind, named Ali-Pasha, governor of 
Turkish Hungary. He. had through ambition or through 
fear the cowardice to repudiate his wife whom he loved, to 
aggrandize himself in wealth and dignities by wedding a 
sister of his master. The historian Petschewi, witness of 
these cruel nuptials, says that the tears and the imprecations 
of the repudiated wife of Ali, in leaving his house, would 
have moved the rooks of the Balkana 

Hassan-Pasha and Feredoun, the first for his wealth, the 
second for his talent, were judged worthy of those alliances 
with Sultana relatives of the sovereign. Feredoun, dis- 
graced, as has been seen, owed his return to the favor of this 
tardy marriage. The life of the Sultan, in the lap of these 
luxuries and of these feminine intrigues, was spent in the 
sumptuosities of hb gardens and in the puerilities of shows, 
with which he amused the slaves and the children of the 
harem. After having killed time in his kiosks, of which 
the terraces, perfumed with roses, are cooled by the breezes 
of the Bosphorus, he prolonged the day by the blaze of fire- 
-works which were set off upon the heights in front of the 
gardens for the amusement of his son Mohammad. 

Some edifices of devotion or of public utility, which he 
liked to see arise beneath his eyes to distract his idleness by 
the spectacle of the activity of the laborers, diversified his 
hours. He sent for this purpose considerable sums to Mecca, 
to the end of protecting the holy Kaaba and the black stone 


incmsted in the walls of the temple from the innnd&itims 
that had soiled it. This black stone of Abraham is, in the 
Arabian and Mahometan traditions, a ruby fallen from the 
heavens at the beginning of the world, of which the splendor 
illuminated the earth with a light equal to that of the dawn, 
and which the multiplied sins of the human species ended 
with obscuring totally in proportion as humanity got more 
depraved in getting older. The profane see in it but an 
aerolite dropped in Arabia in the times of the patriarchs, which 
shone as a fiery meteor in falling, which was extinguished 
after the fall, and of which oriental allegory and superstition 
made the sympathetic ruby of the sacred Kaaba. 


The influence of those princesses and of those slaves of 
the seraglio upon the mind of Amurath III. did not equal 
that of the gardener of whom the prophetess Kaziyé had made 
the accomplice of her wiles, and whom Amurath, in recom- 
pense of his magical divinations, had raised to the rank of 
preacher of the court. This fanatic having received from 
heaven, he said, the order to get converted into mosques all 
the Christian churches of Constantinople, communicated his 
intolerance to the Sultan. Amurath commenced this trans- 
formation of the Christian temples, under pretext that 
the increased number of the Mussulmans of the capital 
exceeded the number and the capacity of the mosques erected 
for their worship. But the remonstrances of the ambassa- 
dors, and the sums with which the Greeks and Catholics 
redeemed their altars, retained their churches to the Chris- 

The ambassador of France, M. de Germigny, protested 
daringly against the suppression of the chapels of Galata, 
and marched with an armed retinue to defend the gates. 
The fear of losing so steadfast an ally of Turkey caused the 
ambassador to be pardoned this temerity, while the grand 
vizier threatened the envoys of the Emperor of Germany. 
with confinement in the fortress of the Seven Towers. 

The capitulations for the protection of Christianity in the 
empire and for the privileges of navigation were renewed 
and amplified at this epoch. 

Hungary and Germany alone disturbed the complete 
security of the divan on the side of Europe. The indopen- 


dent Hnngarians had elected for their king the emperor 
Bodolphus. This union of Hungary and Anstria under the 
same emperor displeased the Porte. The grand rizier testi- 
fied gruffly his anger to the Austrian envoys. " Is it not 
true," said he to them one day in public audience, ^^ that the 
emperor Bodolphus is an infirm and sickly prince ? Why 
have the Hungarians chosen a king who is not of their 
blood ? The Germans, according to our proverb, are gelded 
horses, but the Hungarians are vigorous stallions. You 
urge the Hungarians to detach themselves from the protec- 
tion of the SiHtans; but if they choose another king among 
themselves, we will go at once into Hungary to confirm by 
arms the king whom they will have taken against your 
emperor." He threatened them with the pillory. 

The ambassadors of the emperor endured without mur- 
muring these outrages, and continued to pay the tribute and 
to solicit the friendship of the Turks. 


Envoys extraordinary of all the powers of Asia, of 
Europe and of Africa arrived at Constantinople to attend 
jbhe festivities of the circumcision of the son of Amurath 
III. and of the Venetian Safiyé. The memory of these 
solemnities must have ranked in the mind of Amurath, 
among the great events of his reign. They remain, in fact, 
a testimony of the opulence and the manners of the court 
of the Sultans at this period. Their magnificence and their 
duration mark the apogee of luxury to which a tribe of con- 
quering shepherds had raised, in two centuries, the throne 
of the Sultans. The description of them fills whole volumes 
of the memoirs of the times and of the correspondence of 
the ambassadors to their courts. "We will borrow a few 
pages of it from the German historians, abstracted by Ham- 
mer from the archives of the Germanic courts. 

" Over a year," say they, " had been devoted to preparation 
for these festivities. The period of 1582 was notified to the 
monarchs of Asia, of Europe and of Africa. Tschaouschs 
were also despatched with invitations to all the governors of 
the empire ; those whom their affairs should prevent from 
attending might have their absence excused them by sending 
large presents. The former intendant of the imperial kitch- 
ens, Karabalibeg, was appointed intendant (emir) and the 

86 HI8T0BT or TtTBKKT. 

former niaohandji, Hamiabeg, inspector (naiir) of the fêtes; 
the latter received from the treasurj a half a million 
of ac^rs for the expenditures belonging to his department. 
Cooking-honses rose upon every side ; and the hippodrome, 
where Soliman had before celebrated the nuptials of his 
sister, those of Ibrahim, and the circumcision of his son, was 
the scene of magnificences which must put into ihe shade all 
recollections of the grandest sumptuosities of past ages. 
The effect answered fully to the immense preparations, and 
the fetes of Amurath III. in honor of the circumcision of 
his son Mohammed, remain without example in the history 
of the Ottoman empire, for splendor and duration." 

^' The hippodrome, which is four hundred paces long by 
ÛYe hundred oroad, was set off according to the exigencies 
of ihe fete and of the spectators. In the upper part, where 
stands at present the hospital for the insane, there was 
described a square of one hundred paces shut in with planks 
and designed for cookeries. Kiosks and covered lodgings 
for the Sultan, the heir presumptive and the Sultanas, were 
established in the enclosure of the palace of Ibrahim-Pasha, 
favorite of Amurath. Below this palace and on the same 
line arose an edifice of which the base, for six feet in height, 
was constructed of stone, and on which was superposed three 
stories in wood : the first was assigned to the ambassadors 
of foreign powers, the second to the agas of the court, 
internal and external, the third to the begs, beglerbegs and 
viiiers of the empire. To this construction succe^ed a 
gallery of twelve feet by seven high (sic), in which were 
placed the capitan-pasha and the begs of the navy." 

^^In front of the palace of Ibralum-Pasha was placed the 
music of the imperial chapel and the nuptial palm-trees. 
Lower down on iSie same side arose the stall of the Persian 
embassy, from the ceiling of which hung a lustre, diffusing 
light through several huiulred tubes. Near the stall of the 
Persian ambassador stood, that of the French minister. 
This personage at first demanded to obtain precedence of the 
Austrian envoy ; but the demand having been refused, he 
absented himself from the festival, under pretext that it was 
not fitting that the representative of the Most-Christian king 
should attend at the ceremonies of idolaters. This tribune 
was occupied by the Tartar and the Polish ambassadors. 
Last of all came the gallery of the capitan-pasha, in front of 
which stood the grand tent for the preparation of sherbet and 


odber refreshments. In liie middle of the square were 
elevated two poleS) of which one was painted red and the 
other rubbed with oil ; the latter was crowned with a rast 
circle, to which were suspended several thousands of lamps, 
and which was lowered during the night in order to light 
the hippodrome.'' 

^^The beglerbeg of Boumelia was charged with the 
police of the festivities ; the beglerb^ of Anatolia had the 
superintendence of the sherbets {scherheidfibaschi) ; the capi- 
tan-pasha, the direction of the galleries and stages ; the aga 
of the Janissaries was made chief of the guards. Five hun- 
dred men robed in grotesque leathern apparel paraded the 
place, carrying each of them a leathern vessel filled with 
wind, with which they struck the disturbers of the peace. 
Their captain, mounted on an ass which was covered by a 
housing of straw mats, combined with those important func- 
tions that of buffoon for the multitude. 

" Three days after, the Sultanas, accompanied by a whole 
arsenal of sugar works, presented themselves at the hippo- 
drome. They were attended by ten or twelve prisoners 
from Hungary or from Bosnia, whose feats of strength or 
rather endurance were exhibited to the people. They 
hacked themselves with sabre blows, they pierced them- 
selves with lances ; one of them planted a spear of a pike in 
his flesh ; others bristled their arms with arrows ; others still 
carried hgrse-shoes nailed to their back, and the blood 
trickled down in streams. The principal among them re- 
ceived a revenue of four thousand aspers. But two of those 
unfortunate prisoners having sunk beneath their wounds, this 
inhuman spectacle was forbidden for the remainder of the fes- 

'^ Among the works in sugar, were remarked nine ele- 
phants, seventeen lions, nineteen leopards, twenty-two horses, 
twenty-one camels, four giraffes, nine mermaids, twenty-five 
falcons, eleven cranes, eight storks, eight mallards, and a 
multitude of other objects. The confectionery was carried 
by fifteen dray-horses, of which eight wore housings of red 
damask and seven of damask of silver. During, the distri- 
bution of the sugar works, some Arabs and rope-dancers 
amused the people by climbing poles, and also the obelisk 
and the pillar of the hippodrome." • 

» I find it quite repulsive to proeeed another lino in the translation of 
these ponderous puerilitiea. The foregoing paragraphs present the Only 


We have gone into some details on these festivities, 
because they were daring several years the object to which 
tended all the ideas and all the negotiations of Amurath, 
and because they throw a vivid light upon the state of the 
empire, at that time still dreaded by the European powers, 
upon the luxury of the court and of the great, the sumptU' 
ousness of apparel, the taste and the amusements of the 
people, the distribution into categories of the different 
industries, such as they have been shown us by the proces- 
sions of the different trades.* 


This picture of the nation's luxury completes the por- 
traits of the men ; festivities are the history of the manners 
of a people. These were saddened by the grand vizier 0th- 
man with an act of tragic justice accomplished, despite the 
influence of the harem, upon Hassan-Pasha, brother-in-law 
of Amurath. Hassan, who dilapidated the treasures of 
Egypt of which he was governor, to the advantage of his 
private fortune, was recalled and thrown upon his arrival at 
Constantinople into the prison of the Seven Towers. The 
Sultan granted him life but on the prayers and tears of his 

The favorite Ibrahim was sent to Egypt to repair the 
misadministration of Hassan. Ibrahim employed in vain 
some eighteen months and thousands of hands in exploring 
Mount Mokattan at Cairo, and the slope of the Smaragdus 
on the shore of the Bed Sea, to discover the treasures hidden 
by Hassan. 

A civil war between the Druses, a warlike tribe which 

poiiits of the least interest in the description, which however still runs on 
for ahout fifteen mortal pages, such as no one hut a German could have 
had the patience of compiling, and no one hut a poet judge of consequence 
enough for quoting. It is the same garish ding-dong of presents and 
processions, of banquetings and hufioQueries, which the author had, more- 
over, given us already more than once, and which I have heen once be- 
fore obliged to spare myself and the sober reader. The thing is barren 
and barbarian, beneath a glare of childish gorgeousness ; and to parade 
such stuff in proof of civilization, or even real magnificence, is to betray 
a serious lack of the philosophy of social progress. — TrarulcUor. 

* The sole trades mentioned are shoemakers, bonnet-makers, cotton- 
spinners, saddlers, silk -weavers, upholsterers, armorers, confectioners, 
workers in gold and silver, and a few others of the like barbaric import, 
— Trcawlator, 


divides with the Maronites the upper yallejs of Mount Leb* 
anon, recalled Ibrahim into Syria. One of the chief of the 
Druses, Ebn-Maan, who ruled between Beyrout and Tripoli 
of Syria, made submission to Ibrahim, and sent him his 
mother with presents of Arabian horses, of goats and of 
silk, productions of those savage and picturesque countries. 
Ibrahim received the mother of the Drusian soheik with 
kindness. Taking two silk veils which the woman presented 
him, he spread one of them upon the head of the mother of 
the rebel ; he covered his own head with the other, to signify 
that the past was for ever veiled between the Druses and the 
Ottomans. But this promise was a perfidy. Scarcely had 
the mother of Ebn-Maan rejoined her sod, than Ibrahim, 
enveloping him in his mountain retreat, surprised him and 
had him flayed alive at Antera. The maledictions of 
the betrayed and martyrized chief insurrected his whole race 
on Mount Lebanon. Ibrahim, with six thousand Janissaries, 
debarked from Egypt at Said, the ancient Sidon, ravaged 
the entire table-land of Lebanon, exterminating the Drusian 
chiefs divided among themselves. Four hundred severed 
heads of these rebels preceded him to Constantinople. 

The treasures in money, in jewelry, in works of art, 
which he brought from Egypt and Syria upon his fleet, 
ensured him a good reception from the Sultan. The most 
precious of those spoils was a throne of gold which had been 
chased by an Egyptian artist, in a style to rival the Floren- 
tine artists. This thirone, besides the workmanship and the 
precious stones with which it was encrusted, contained a 
mass of gold equivalent to ten millions.* It is the imperial 
seat which has served since then at the inauguration of the 
Sultans in the ceremony of the accession. Two hundred 
thousand gold ducats in money, two Korans of which the 
binding shone with diamonds and with rubies; a curtain 
embroidered in precious stones which veiled the door of fhe 
temple of Mecca; three sabres, three yatagans, and three 
Persian poniards with jewelled hilts ; three bucklers dazzling 
with rubies ; a woman's toilet composed of seventy-nine 
pieces in pure gold, of innumerable rolls of velvet, of 
brocade, of Indian muslin ; one hundred white boys, seven- 
teen black eunuchs, ten Ethiopian negroes of African fea- 
tures, seven white Ethiopians ; seventy Arabian horses of the 

* The author does not say of what, but possibly he means of francs. 


desert, of which ten bore saddles of gold and honsb^ 
embroidered with pearls ; an elephant carrying a throne, a 
giraffe, a gigantic antelope, nnknown hitherto to the Otto- 
mans, composed the present of Ibrahim. Amnrath III., 
who loved him and who destined him the place of grand 
vizier, gave him his daughter, the Sultana Aisché, in mar- 
riage. The splendor of uiese nuptials equalled the fôtes of 
the circumcision. 

Ibrahim, sent to Hungary to repress the armed rebellions 
of the magnates Nadasdy and Palfy, whom the secret sup- 
port of Austria encouraged against the Turks, returned to 
Constantinople with a crowd of Hungarian prisoners in 
chains, and carrying each of them tuo heads of his com- 
patriots slain upon the field of battle. The envoy of the 
emperor Rodolphus having sought to intercede for some of 
these datives : " Dog," replied to him the vizier, " why 
have you supported Nadasdy ? Why is your annual tribute 
not yet paid to the Sultan ? " The sabre and the battle-axe 
of the ambassador are wrested from his page and broken in 
his presence. The Hungarian magnates Zriny, Nadasdy, 
Bithiany, avenged these outrages by the defeat of the pasha 
Sohehzvar and by the massacre of three thousand Turks at 
Kanisoha. The pasha himself escaped from death ojily by 
flight His horse expired under him of fatigue. He wan- 
dered alone in the marshes of the banks of the Danube, 
obliged to wrap his torn feet with the fur of the tiger-skin of 
his caftan. Betuming obscurely and covered with shame to 
Constantinople, he purchased a £bw days' life by the aban- 
donment of all his treasures to the Sultan, and at last 
poisoned himself for shame and for grief at having lost his 


The ambassador of the kmg of Poland, Stephen Bathori, 
was dismissed from Constantinople with severe reproaches 
against his republic, which had given asylum and impunity 
to the Cossacl^, enemies of the Tartars of the Crimea and of 
the Turks. The ambassador, John Podladowsky, not hav- 
ing promised sufficient satisfaction to the Porte, was massa- 
cred with all his suite in a forest near Adrianople in return- 
ing to Poland. The whole vengeance of the king of Poland 
was to obey the injunctions of the divan, and to put to 


death thirty-three Cossacks to please the ambassadors of 

A short time after, the death of Bathory reopened the< 
ordinary competitions and intrigues for the election of the 
king for life of the Sarmatians. Sigismund, prince of 
Sweden, was elected without opposition from the divan ; he 
hastened to send Count Zamoisky, his secretary, to Constanti- 
nople to request the continuation of the relations of patronage 
and of deference between the republic of Poland and l£e 

Queen Catherine of Medici kept up a direct correspond* 
enee with the Venetian Sultana Safiyé, to obtain of Amu- 
rath the aid of the Ottoman fleet against the Spanish fleet of 
Philip IL, at war with France. The Jewess Kira, confidant 
of the Sultana, obtained communication of one of the letters 
of Catherine of Medici, and revealed the correspondence to 
the Venetian ambassador, compatriot of the Sultana. 

England solicited the same alliance oflensive and defen- 
sive against Philip II. The grand vizier eluded the alliance 
under pretext of the war with Persia, which absorbed all the 
military forces of Turkey. 

The Venetians, although at peace with the Porte, con- 
tinued to combat on the seas of Africa the Barbary squad- 
rons, allies and tributaries of the Turks. The pasha of 
Tripoli, Eamazan, having been killed in his palace by the 
revolted Janissaries, his widow fled upon one of her galleys 
to Constantinople with a treasure of a hundred thousand 
pieces of gold amassed by her husband. Four hundred 
slaves and forty young women of her retinue accompanied 
the widow in her flight. Adverse winds drove the galley 
into the Adriatic. She cast anchor in the port of Zanté, a 
Venetian island. The governor of Zanté respected in the 
fugitive the rights of peace, of misfortune, and of hospitality. 
But the celebrated Venetian admiral Emmo, informed of 
the wealth which was carried by the vessel, awaited her at 
sea in the neighbourhood of Cephalonia, and seized her as a 
spoil of war. The three hundred Janissaries, faithful to the 
widow of their pasha, were immolated in defending her on the 
deck of the Turkish galley. The Venetians, without pity for 
an innocent and defenceless woman, killed the infant of the 
pasha upon the breast of its massacred mother. The forty 
young women were thrown into the sea after having satiated 
the brutality of the crews; a young brother of admiral 


SmmO) himself partook in this debauoherj mixed with blood 
before the eyes of the commander of the squadron. He 
had taken possession of the most beautiful of these victims. 
She threw herself at his feet imploring honor and life, certi- 
fying that she was Christian and Venetian, that she had been 
carried off an infant from Cyprus by the conquerors of the 
island, and taken into slavery by the Barbary pirates. 
Neither her race, nor her religion, nor her tears, nor her 
beauty, could mitigate the heart of the ferocious Venetian. 

These crimes of the Venetians at peace with the Mussul- 
mans excited cries of horror and of reprisal from the Turks 
throughout the coasts of the Adriatic and the Mediterranean. 
The Venetian Sultana Safiyé, always devoted to her native 
country, saved with difficulty the ambassador of Venice at 
Constantinople from popular vengeance. Her confidential 
letters to the senate of Venice convinced the republic of the 
necessity of a reparation proportioned to the outrage, or of 
the danger of an implacable war upon the Venetian posses- 
sions. Emmo and his son were disavowed and decapitated on 
the deck of their galley ; the treasures and the slaves of the 
pasha of Tripoli restored to his family. The Venetians, to 
efface all memory of this crime committed under their flag, 
united their vessels with the Turkish vessels against the gal- 
leys of Philip II. Spain herself demanded a truce from the 
divau. The ambassador of Queen Elizabeth of England was 
not able to prevent this truce with Spain. 

Pope Sextus V., of whom the comprehensive policy 
transcended the horizon of Europe, tried by managements 
towards the Turks and by negotiating legates sent to dissent- 
ing Christian communities of the empire, to reattach to the 
Boman Catholic centre the Greeks, the Armenians, the Jaco- 
bites of Mesopotamia. The sect spirit, more invincible 
than even national antipathies, defeated all these efforts. 
The Porte did not interfere in these religious negotiations 
between Christians submitted to its sway ; but the Maronites 
of Lebanon alone persevered in a Boman Catholicism which 
tolerated in this communion the marriage of the priests. 


The old capitan-pasha Kilidj died aged ninety in the 
arms of a favorite slave of his harem. Ibrahim-Pasha, the 
favorite of Amurath, succeeded him for a short time. The 


governor of Algiers, Hassan-Pasha, a Venetian renegade, 
was raised by his talent to this post. Hassan, former gover- 
nor of Egypt, and imprisoned in the Seven Towers for em- 
bezzlement at Cairo, had been denounced by another rene- 
gade from Milan, in his malversation. The Sultan, who had 
then confiscated two hundred thousand ducats of it, did not 
give him back his fortune in restoring him to favor. Has- 
san, in order to testify his gratitude to Amurath, brought 
him from Algiers ten armed galleys, and made him a present 
of three hundred thousand ducats, thirty young eunuchs and 
fifty young girls of singular beauty. 

The war with Persia occupied exclusively the grand 
vizier Othman He alone was at once capable of preparing 
and of conducting it. Two hundred thousand men, seasoned 
by him in his long campaigns, awaited him at Castemouni, 
on the route of Erzeroum. Arrived at Erzeroum, Othman 
dismissed Ferhad-Pasha, who had commanded hitherto re- 
missly the Ottoman forces in observation on the frontiers of 
Persia. Othman marched directly upon Tauris and burned 
the capital of Aderbidjan, situated, to its misfortune, in the 
middle of a plain, reckoned among the four " paradises " of 
the Ottomans. In forty days he rebuilt and fortified it in 
order to make it a stepping-stone of future expeditions. 
But a defeat of his lieutenant Cicala-Pasha, and the murmurs 
of the army, who refused to advance farther into a desert 
country, forced him to retreat. 

Attacked by prince Hamza, son of the blind Schah and 
already vanquisher of Cicala, Othman, sick but not dispirited, 
died of lassitude upon his horse in the midst of the battle. 
His death brought with it the rout of the Turks. Thirty 
thousand of them fell beneath the sabre of the Persians ; the 
rest fled for refuge into Erzeroum. Ferhad-Pasha and Cicala 
took jointly the command of the wrecks of the army. 

Amurath III. replaced his deceased grand vizier by 
Mesih-Pasha, an old man of ninety, whose intellect was tot- 
tering xmder the weight of his years. The motive of this 
inexplicable choice, at a moment when the empire stood in 
need of the most active head and hand, was to let the favor- 
ite Ibrahim reign behind the name of a nominal vizier. 

Meanwhile the Persian prince Hamza pursued the course 
of his victories over the remnants of the Ottoman army. 
Winter retained him at Caswin. The sa.viour of Persia 
prepared there a third campaign. The intrigues of the 


parlies who were rendÎDg his country menaced him erer on 
this breach of the empire. 

A strange barber named Bjondi, introduced into his 
apartment to shave the prioce, cut his thrbat and escaped 
without being suspected by his guards. Some ascribe the 
crime of the assassin to the fanaticism of the Mussulmans, 
who reproached Hamza-Mirza with too much favor towards 
the Christians of the kingdom ; oUiers, to the instigation of 
Ismael-Mirza, jealous of the glory and of the throne which 
80 many exploits were assuring to his broUier. The blind 
Schah did not survive his grief at the loss of such a 
son. Ismael inherited in fact, for some months only, this 
throne ensanguined by so many crimes. But the Soliman or 
the Charlemagne of Persia was born, and was growing up 
already in the shade. It was a child saved from the massa- 
cre of the sons of Mohammed, by the cruel Peridjan. This 
boy was the great Abbas, restorer of Persia. 


During the whole of the reign of Mohammed the Blind, 
this Schah had vainly demanded of the tribe chiefs of Kho- 
rassan, to whom the child had been, according to usage, con- 
fided, to have him sent back to his court These chieftains, 
attached to the diild by his misfortunes, by his graces, and 
perhaps also by the hope of raising him one day to the 
throne to rule in his name, had refused to give up this 

The two mostpowerful in arms of these tribe chiefs of 
Khorassan, Ali-Khouli-Khan and Murshud-Khouli-Khan, 
raised, on the death of Hamza and of Mohammed, the ban- 
ner of the rights of young Abbas. They set the child on 
horseback, despite his tender years, and taught him the 
exercises and the genius of war, in order to exalt, by the 
presence of the pretender their pupil, the enthusiasm of the 
Persians. Victorious in several battles against the troops 
of Ismael, they soon disputed with each other the honors and 
the fruits of the victory gained in the same cause, and 
fought among themselves the provinces which they had just 
conquered conjointly. 

Young Abbas had remained in the hands of Ali-Khouli- 
Khan. In a battle lost against Murshud, the boy's horse 
killed in the conflict rolled upon the dust. Ablms was going 


to perish beneath the feet of the horses, when the cavabj 
of Mnrshud, recognizing the son of the Sophia beneath their 
sabres, stopped their horses, threw down their arms, fell 
upon their knees before the infant king, took him np, and 
crowned him on the field of battle. Conducted by Murshud- 
Elhouli-Khan into the submitted capital, Caswin, Abbas was 
proclaimed there without opposition. Murshud reigned in his 
name more than was fitting towards an adolescent capable 
and jealous of his rights to uie throne. Murshud was assas- 
sinated by the partisans of the young king in the palace of 
Gaswin where he assumed to reign in his place. 


Meanwhile the Ousbek Tartars, those eternal enemies of 
Persia, conquerors already of one half the provinces of the 
north, were advancing in countless multitudes to take advan- 
tage of the dissensions and the feebleness of the reign of 
a child. Abbas marched against them without other general 
than himself, wrested from them Meschid the principal capi- 
tal of the empire, drove them back beyond the Oxus, and 
returned with his army, prepared to make head against the 
Turks who were menacing Caswin and Tauris. 

Encamped upon the bank of the river Kur or Cyrujs in 
the plain of Georgia, Abbas exercised there his soldiers, and 
called around him all the tribes desirous of saving or aveng- 
ing their common country. His youth, his beauty, his 
bravery, fanaticised the two armies separated by the river. 
During the truce established for the winter between the two 
camps, Abbas, galloping on the sands of the Cyrus with 
some of his young generals, was invited by some Turkish 
officers to cross the river by swimming, and to confide himself 
to their hospitality. The young prince pushed his horse 
into the water, and passed some hours with the Turks without 
making himself known. After this amicable interview he 
invited some of his hosts to pass the river in their turn to 
test the faith of the Persians. " "We are very willing," said 
the officers of the army of Amurath, with the same confi- 
dence, " on condition that you will enable us to see your 
young Schah, of whom the courage, the genius and the 
renown surpass his years and ring through Asia." Abbas 
smiled and promised to satisfy them. Scarcely had they 
touched the Persian bank than the respectful attitude and the 


aoolamations of the troops revealed to the Turks that this 
jouDg man who had so rashly put himself into their hands 
was the Schah of Persia himself. Abbas, after having 
received them as a king in his tents, had them reconducted 
with honors and presents into their camp. 

His precocious genius did not preserve him entirely from 
the superstitions and the credulities of his country and his 
times. While he was checking thus the Tartars with one 
hand, the Ottomans with the other, and when his good fortune, 
already made known, presaged to Persia the most memorable 
of its reigns, a prediction of hb astrologers upon a queer coin- 
cidence of the stars, diffused among the people that great 
calamities were rbing upon Persia, and that an imminent 
peril menaced the sovereign. WheUier through credulity or 
policy, Abbas resolved to elude the prediction and to baffle 
destiny by abdicating the throne. He did in fact abdicate 
solemnly, and caused to be crowned in his place, for some 
hours, a criminal condemned to death for his felonies and 
impieties. This wretched manikin of the throne was named 
Yousouf-Sophi. , He enjoyed for three hours the palace, the 
pleasures, the honors of the sovereignty of kings. The 
fourth hour he was delivered to the executioner. The pre- 
diction, thus verified by a subterfuge, had exhausted the 
malignity of fate upon a nominal nation and king. 

Abbas reascended his throne under other auspices, and 
the stars promised him greater prosperity. A decisive 
battle against the Ousbek Tartars, near Herat, precipitated 
them into the Oxus. One of his generals, Mohammed 
Ferhad-Khan, by a secret intelligence with the Ousbeks, had 
resolved to let the king be crushed during this battle. Under 
pretext of running to a fictitious peril, he sought to lead off 
the left wing which he commanded to a distance from the 
field of battle. But his generals and soldiers, perceiving 
Abbas struggling alone with a handful of troops against the 
masses of Tartars who enveloped him, flew of themselves to 
his assistance and saved their kine. 

Ferhad, accused of treason by the army, expiated his 
crime by death. Ali- Verdi-Khan, who had disobeyed him to 
save the king, was raised to the honors and the intimacy of 
favorite of Abbas. Ali- Verdi-Khan, sent by the king with 
an army to reduce to submission the border provinces 
detached from the kingdom, reconquered to him the islands 
of the Persian gulf which contain the pearl fisheries, and 


the chain of mduntams called Laristan which extends from 
the fertile plain of Schiraz, utmous for its gardens, its waters 
and its wines, as far as the Persian gulf 

Ibrahim-Khan, whose fathers governed these mountains 
for four thousand years, was sent a captive to the court of 
Abbas. The famous crown of Chosroes was found in his 
treasury. This crown of gold, incrusted with pearls and 
rubies, taken o£f and preserved for so many centuries by 
this family of tributary princes, who had never been con- 
quered hitherto by the masters of Persia, thus returned to 
grace the brow of the worthiest successor of Chosroes. 

Some gentlemen of England, a curious nation, which 
explore the world as much through restlessness of mind 
as through the instinct of discovery and the spirit of 
mercantile speculations, were the first Europeans who hailed 
in Abbas the regenerator of the East. This caravan of 
English travellers was composed of Sir Anthony Shirley, 
Sir Kobert Shirley his brother, and of a retinue of thirty 
gentlemen of the same nation. Most of them were officers, 
geographers, artists, artisans, traders, distmguished in their 
country. One of them was a skilful founder of cannons. 
They travelled with an Asiatic luxury under the patronage 
of the Earl of Essex, favorite of Queen Elizabeth, carrying 
to the courts of the East the name, the arts, the interests, 
the alliances of their country. 

Entertained at the court of Abbas, of whom the genius 
was enlarged enough to envy to one world what was wanting 
to another, they received honors and presents worthy of the 
magnificence of an Indian monarch. A thousand pieces of 
coined gold, each of the value of sixteen dollars, forty 
Persian steeds saddled and equipped with splendid harnesses, 
sixteen mules, twelve camels laden with tents of which the 
curtains were embroidered with gold, with torquoises and 
pearls, composed the present of the Sohah. Shirley won the 
friendship of Ali-Verdi-Khan, generalissimo of the armies, 
and became the European confidant of Abbas. He encour- 
aged this prince and his ministers to face with confidence 
the war against the Turks. He introduced the European 
artillery and discipline into the regular infantry formed at 
hb advice by the Schah. Abbas, to secure the neutrality of 
the Christian princes, accredited Anthony Shirley his favorito 
by letters, of which the terms attest the pateiarchal friend- 
ship of a king of warrior tribes. 
Vol. 1X1.-5 


'^Have entire confidence in him," said Abbas in his 
letters of credence, '^for since he is with me, we have 
always, like two brothers, eaten off the same plate and drunk 
from the same cup.'' The Christians and the monks of dif- 
ferent monastic orders were encouraged to reside, to practise 
and to preach freely their religion in Persia. " Our reli- 
gious functionaries," said the firmans of Abbas, ^^ will not dare 
to molest yours or to speak to them about matters of faith." 
This tolerance populated the cities of Persia and the suburbs 
of the capital with Christian merchants, artisans and manufeuN 
turers from all parts of the East. The ambassador of the 
Schah, Shirley, experienced outrages only in Russia, where 
the jealous, uneasy, and barbarous court of Moscow threw 
him, despoiled of his treasure, into prison. Delivered from 
his captivity after long tortures, he visited the courts of 
Germany and of Italy, enlisting everywhere the assistance or 
the good will of the Christian princes for Abbas, the enemy 
of the enemies of the Christians. 

Sure of the support of Europe, Abbas reconquered 
Tauris from Ali-Pasha, to whom the grand vizier Othman 
had confided the guard of it after his retreat. A Portuguese 
ecclesiastic, father Anthony Govea, sent by Philip II. to the 
oourt of Abbas, relates the fall of this city; Erivan followed 
Ihe fate of Tauris. Abbas, before marching against Bagdad 
to reattach it to his empire, wished to purge the north of 
Persia of the presence of the Turks. 

Let us resume the recital of the events which correspond 
at Constantinople with these revolutions and these triumphs 
of the Persians, regenerated by the glory of their Soliman, 


The old vizier of ninety, Mesih-Pasha, had ceded the 
viziership to Sinan-Pasha, exiled to Malghara and then to 
Damascus. The presents which Sinan-Pasha sent from his 
governments to the Sultana Safiyé and to the favorites of 
the harem had cancelled his disasters in Persia and his 
incompetence in the divan. The mufti had been likewise 
substituted by a mystical poet, author of Arabic and Turk- 
ish poems, named Bostanzadé-EffendL The scherif of Mecca, 
Abou-Nemi, was come to bring to Constantinople, with the 
benedictions of the Kaaba, the presents of Arabia, composed 


of rich stnfl^ of satin and of cotton, of aloes, of cocoa-nuts 
filled with fruit-comfits of India. Ambassadors from Abbas 
demanded imperiously of the Porte the restitution of the 
provinces usurped, and the ancient delimitation of the fron- 
tiers of the two empires. 

Siawousch-Pasha had, to fiatter Amurath III., con- 
structed at his own expense on the banks of the Bosphorus, 
near the stables of the seraglio, sq^ imperial palace of which 
he made a present to the Sultan. Amurath entered it under 
a canopy of a thousand paces long, covered with tapestry of 
satin and brocade. A splendid oanquet was served him by 
Sinan-Pasha and by the architects of this new palace, which 
has been demolished in our own days to build the palace of 
Mahmoud, father of Abdul-Medjid the reigning Sultan. 
The revenues of the grand vizier were raised to a million 
of ducats (that is to say, some two millions of dollars). 

Atrocious cruelties, occasioned by the exactions of Ibra- 
him, the greedy favorite of Amurath, and by his accomplices, 
martyrized the Christians of Syria. The bishop of Jerusa- 
lem expired in tortures because he would not gratify the 
cupidity of the governor. France, protectress of the Holy 
Places, Venice, Spain, Austria, Naples, claimed the pumsh- 
ment of the despoiler and executioner of their coreligionists. 
The Sultan despatched headsmen to Damascus and to Jeru- 
salem to expiate those crimes by the decapitation of the two 


The finances fell into disorder like the administration. 
The money of the empire, that pledge of the integrity of 
transactions, was altered by the Jews, inspectors of coins 
and alloys. The Jew coiner of the currency presented the 
treasurer of the Sultan, says the historian of this reign, Ali, 
ten pieces of gold, " as thin as an almond-leaf and not 
heavier than a dew drop." The Jew offered the treasurer 
a present of two hundred thousand piasters, if he would 
accept the money for the payment of the troops. The treas- 
urer refused. One of the favorites of Amurath, Moham- 
med-Pasha the Falconer^ thus sumamed from his first office in 
the seraligo, accepted the present and undertook rashly to 
get the pay accepted in this money by the troops of the 


The Janiflsaries, indignant at the money which was in de- 
rision distributed to them, revolted and covered the seraglio 
with imprecations. Sinan-Pasha the grand vizier, and Ibra- 
him the former favorite, second vizier, fomented secretly the 
sedition through jealousy of the dominant favor of Moham- 
med the Falconer. The gates of the courts were burst in by 
sixty thousand Janissaries, swelled by disguised soldiers 
from the other corps. The hall of the divan, where Amu- 
rath deliberated with the viziers, rune with threats against 
the life of the very Sultan. Never, till this day, had a sedi- 
tion risen so ûtr as the sacred name of the Sultan.* 

" If the beglerbeg Mohammed is not delivered to us," 
cried the seditionists, " let the Sultan tremble for himself. 
We will be sure to reach him." Piles of gold and silver, 
drawn from the plethoric treasury of Amurath, were set in 
vain in the court under the hands of the Janissaries. Anger 
was stronger than cupidity. " The first amongst us," cried 
they, " who shall consent to touch his pay before the heads 
of the Falconer and of the treasurer have fallen, will be 
punished with death on the spot." 

After having temporized and negotiated for some hours 
with the rebels to save his favorite, Amurath in tears em- 
braced him, took from him his poniard, and delivered him to 
the vociferators. Mohammed was cut to pieces before hav- 
ing descended the steps of the divan. The innocent and 
virtuous treasurer, ud justly denounced to the troops, under- 
went the fate which was deserved alone by the tempter. 
Amurath suspected the grand vizier Siawousch and Ibrahim 
of having prompted and directed the sedition against his 
friend. " I was wrong," said he in returning to his harem, 
" not to have delivered all the viziers to the just vengeance 
of my slaves ; the most guilty have not been stricken." 

Siawousch-Pasha, removed after the apeasement of the 
disturbance, gave place to Sinan-Pasha. Hassan the Clock- 
maker J of whom the name recalled the trade among his com- 
rades, was appointed aga of the Janissaries. 

It was the year in which the day of the Barricades en- 
sanguined Paris, and in which Henry III. fell by the 
poniard of an assassm in the midst of his court. The 
Janissaries revolted anew a few days after their bloody 

♦ Does the author forget what he has related us of Bajazet II., who 
had been threatened in his own palace, broken into by these same Jani»- 
Baries, and outraged to his face with the name of drunkard ?— TVoiij/ator. 


execution^ and sacked the palace of Hassan the Glockmaker, 
their general. They were given as aga an equerry of the 
Sultan, a popular man who promised impunity to their 
caprices. The rebellion was propagated to the extremities 
of the empire. Sinan, former governor of Ofen, enemy of 
the Austrian alliance, was assassinated in his house. Sus- 
picion of the crime fell upon two of his slaves, of whom the 
bodies were discovered some weeks after in the fields, near 
the walls of the city. The troops of Hungary and of the 
Persian frontier revolted for grievances of pay in arrears. 
Ferhad-Pasha, the aged governor of Erzeroum, was massa- 
cred by his Janissaries. Djafar-Pasha, the Hungarian, for- 
mer favorite page of Amurath^ was likewise besieged by his 
own troops in the citadel of Kars. He parleyed with the 
rebels, feigned to yield to their demands, purchased secretly 
the aid of the Kurd warriors of the neighboring tribes, con- 
cealing them in the city ; then, inviting his own troops to 
return within the walls to a festival of reconciliation, he 
massacred two thousand of the mutineers in a single night. 

The troops at Constantinople forced the Sultan, by their 
agitation, to change three times the grand vizier, the mufti, 
and the aga of the Janissaries. An Italian renegade of 
Ancona, Khalil-Pasha, was appointed aga. Siawousch-Pasha, 
three timeà grand vizier, three times disgraced, was recalled 
to the head of the council. A commotion of the spahis, 
who demanded in their turn the head of the treasurer of the 
seraglio, and which was only repressed by the sabre of the 
Janissaries, of the bostandjis, of the pages and the eunuchs, 
caused anew the fall of Siawousch and re-estabHshed Sinan- 

During these military movements in the capital, the Janis- 
saries of Moldavia deposed also, seditiously. De Jassy from 
the throne. They set in his place a Moldavian palfrey-groom 
named Aaron, who purchased them by his liberalities. The 
Sultan was constrained to ratify this ignoble choice. 

The king of France, Heniy IV., notified to the Sultan his 
advent to the throne, sent him M. de Breves to detach him 
from the Spanish alliance, and renewed with the Porte the 
relations of Francis I. The grand vizier, at the instance of 
M. de Breves, imprisoned in the tower of Galata the am- 
bassador of the League, M. Lanscome. 



Tho divan sought an occasion of war to occupy the idle- 
ness of the troops. The delays of Austria in the payment 
of the tribute, the incursions of the Uscoques, Croatian 
bandits, upon Ottoman territory, and the bloody reprisals of 
the Turks upon Croatia, supplied it. Rodolphus II., then 
emperor, called his subjects to arms, and instituted in the 
holy Roman empire • and in Austrian Turkey the " Bell of 
the Turks," a sort of regular tocsin ringing three times a 
day and a night to call the cities to vigilance and prayer 
against their barbarous enemies. Hassan-Pasha, beglerbeg 
of Bosnia, lost the battle of the Koulpa against the generals 
of Rodolphus. Twenty thousand Turks, driven back by the 
Austrians on the steep borders of the river, broke the bridges 
under the feet of the fugitives and were ingulfed in the 
current. The Ottomans call the year of this defeat the 
" year of ruin." 

The war thus commenced was not as yet declared. The 
fury of the people of Constantinople declared it of itself 
The army left the city under the conduct of the grand 
vizier. The dervishes accompanying the troops excited them 
by their cries and their fanatical gestures. Some of them, 
covered with skins of bears and lions, imitating the roaring 
of these ferocious beasts, led behind them the ambassador of 
Rodolphus II., Khrekwitz, in chains. He expired of suffer- 
ing and outrage on arriving at Belgrade. This war, being 
conducted on both sides without energy or unity, did no 
honor to either Germany or Turkey. It was but a con- 
stant alternation of successes and reverses, of massacres and 
insubordinations, which .desolated the provinces of Hungary, 
of Wallachia, of Moldavia, without giving the victory to 
either of the combatants. The Janissaries did not cease 
to extort payment for their valor. The Sultan exhausted 
his treasury to send to Belgrade the pay and the largesses 
which they exacted of their generals. 

Amurath III., worn out by debauch, was languishing in 
the gardens of the Bosphorus. His sole pleasure was to 
contemplate from the windows of his ELiosks the sails of the 
vessels that passed and repassed like huge sea-birds from the 

* The reader will remember the pretension of the Germanic empire 
to be the lineal descendant of the empire of the Césars ; the qnality of 
holiness was added hy Christianity. — Translator. 


Propontis into the Black Sea, and from the Black Sea into 
the Propontis. His natural melancholy became deeper with 
the evening of his days. The sound of instruments and the 
salvos of vessels which saluted him in passing with their 
cannons, alone revived some slight emotion in his pleasure- 
jaded senses. Some days before the illness which under- 
mined his strength, he asked his musicians to play, instead 
of orchestral fanfars, the melancholy and almost mournful 
air of a Turkish song of which the first verses say : " I 
feel myself sick of languor. Come, Death ! Keep vigil 
this night by my side 1 " 

While die musicians were executing this lugubrious air, 
two Egyptian galleys passing under the terrace of the Kiosks 
fired a volley simultaneously of all their guns to salute the 
padischah. The commotion, repercussed by the lofty cliffs 
of the Bosphorus, shivered the windows to fragments at the 
feet of the Sultan. The patient saw in this the pressée of 
his doom, to be broken like this class. " See," said he to 
his women, " formerly all the salvos of my fleets united 
would not have shaken these windows, which now fly into 
fragments at the report of the guns of two pitiful galleys. 
There is a fatal hour for every thing. The palace of my 
existence totters by this law." 

He died the night following of grief at quitting life. 
His reign had continued for some years the greatness and 
the prosperity of the reign of Soliman IT. But the son was 
too weak to continue long the father.* The languor of the 
sovereign after the death of the great minister Sokolli was 
communicated to the empire; the epoch of decay com- 
menced for the Ottomans. 

We shall find in the following books the causes of this 
decadence in the relative situations of the Ottomans and the 
Christians, the former knowing only how to conquer, the 
latter learning to govern. But we discern it already in that 
universal law of human things which permits neither man, 
nor nation, nor institution to stop at the summit of its des- 
tiny ; which condemns all that is on the earth to a perpetual 
instability, and which forces to redescend whatever can no 
longer mount, or whatever knows not, as the Turks do 
know, how to renew itself. 

* The text has here an error, no doubt typograpMoal, Amnrath being 
son and successor of 8dim H., and only the grandson of Soliman H.— 



Let us cast a rapid glance over the Ottoman empire and 
over the States of Christian Europe, at the moment when 
the grandson • of the great Soliman II. name to give up the 
last breath, and let us seek in the organic constitution of 
those two great divisions of Asia, of Africa and of Europe, 
the reason why the Ottomans were going to fall off, and why 
the Christians were going to advance. 

The Ottoman empire had as yet suffered none of those 
dismemberments of population, of land or of sea, which 
reduce the strength or the repute of States. Its territory 
intact presented to the eye one of the vastest dominions 
united by religion, race and arms, that has ever englobed 
under the same name an immense zone of the earth. The 
empire was composed of forty governments or viceroyalties, 
and these governments were almost all of them kingdoms. 

These forty satrapies were, in Europe : Hungary, Bosnia, 
Roumclia, the island of Candia, Greece, the Archipelago, 
Macedon, Thrace, Servia, Bulgaria; in Africa: Egypt, 
Algiers, the kingdoms of Tunis and of Tripoli ; in Asia : 
Anatolia, comprising the whole peninsula of Asia Minor, 
Caramania, the kingdom of Cyprus, Syria, Mesopotamia, 
Georgia, the Caucasus, Bagdad and the borders of the 
Euphrates and the Tigris, the kingdom of Trebizond, that 
of Jerusalem, Bassora, Mossoul, the Diarbekir, the provinces 
of the two Arabias that border the Red Sea, Aden and a 
part of the sea of the Indias ; in fine the Crimea and a part 
of Tartary, &c. 

* Son is here again the word iu the text, by a repetition <tf the queer 
oversight jnst noted. — TrandcUor, 


To these governments were added by indirect dominion 
those tribatarj countries of which the Porte appointed the 
princes enfeoffed to its laws : Transylvania, Moladvia, Wal* 
lachia, the republic of Ragusa, and sometimes Polandi So 
that the twenty kingdoms of Pyrrhus, of Perseus, of the 
Bulgarian kings, of the Ptolemies, of Carthage, of Numidia, 
of Mithridates, of Antiochus, of Attains, of Prusias, of 
Herod, of Tigranes, of the sovereigns of Cappadooia, of 
Oomagena, of Cilicia, of Iberia, of Scythia, ana of the Par- 
thians, this eternal shoal of Rome, formed around Constan- 
tinople, the capital of three continents, the nave, the spokes 
and the felloes of the empire, which exceeded in extent, in 
climate, in population and in fertility the Roman universe. 

Such was the Ottoman empire the 18th of January, 
1595, the day when the public criers and the cannon of the 
seraglio announced to the inhabitants of Constantinople the 
death of Amurath and the accession of Mahomet III., son 
of this prince and of the Venetian Sultana Safiyé. What 
a heritage for a people who should have known how to reign 
and administer as the Turks did to fight and to conquer I 
But it was the genius of administration that Was wanting to 
the East, and that was then revealing itself to the West.* 
Islamism with the Ottomans knew only to believe and sub- 
jugate ; Christianity knew to assimilate and govern its con- 

This spirit of assimilation and of government, which the 
Egyptians in Africa, the Greeks and Romans in Europe, had 
bequeathed to the Christian West, was to give in few years 
the superioritj to the active and progressive races of Europe 
over the patriarchal, heroic, but indolent races of the East. 
By a providential phenomenon, which was never renewed 
upon a larger scale than in this struggle of two centuries 
between the Christian West and the Mahometan East, it b 

* Americans may be surprised to see the late republican Lamartine 
insist so frequently upon admimstnaion as the ** one thing needful " to 
good goyemment. With him, if the Turkbh empire and all other em* 
pires have declined, it has not been for want of liberty, of parliaments, 
or constitutions ; these magic cant-words have lost their charm for him 
in his late personal experience. He has seen their hollowness, with the 
prompt perspicacity of the Frenchman, and he rejects them with the 
pliant sincerity of the poet It is only by this negative process that he 
has been led to seize the supreme value of a well-organized system of 
administration. Of the philosophy of the preference, he sees no more 
than does his age. — Tranalaior, * 

Vol. III.— 5* 


not waF) it is labor that ^ves the ownership of the wOrld. 
War is a labor also, bat it is a sterile labor. The continnoos 
and productive activity of races is the law of their durable 
and universal preponderance. The mastery of the world, 
whatever short-sighted skeptics may say, is not to murder 
and to pillage, but to labor, that morality of nations. 


Now the East was beginning to rest firom conquest, and 
the West beginning to labor* Its princes and its States, 
restrained and counterbalanced by each other, had, for the 
first, come to comprehend, that a universal monarchy, whether 
by reliffion or by arms, was a bloody chimera which would 
raise dl the other national families into revolt against the 
ambitious or the fanatical who would 'dare to dream of it in 
Europe. Instead of conquering, they studied to govern. 
The emulation of good administration, of agriculture, of 
industry, of arts, of sciences, of letters; of the organization 
of labor, of navigation ; of the discovery of new territories, 
islands, continents; of the discipline, of the armament, of 
the tactics of permanent armies, was succeeding from day to 
day in the States of Europe, to the emulation of exterminat- 
ing or enslaving their fellow-men Civil wars themselves were 
extinct or allayed, religious wars of orthodoxy were collaps- 
ing of sheer lassitude ; the system of alliances and of Euro- 
pean equilibrium was creating a public law and a diplomacy 
which formed, of the great and the small powers of the 
West, a confederation wherein each member was directly 
interested in the independence of all the others. 

The more equitable and more national distribution of 
territories was registered in general congresses. The too 
extensive empire of Charles Fifth was dismembered to the 
advantage of an equipoise of kingdoms and of republics. 
What was feeble leaned for sustenance on what was strong. 
Hungary was assimilating itself to Germany, White Kussia 
to Poland, northern Italy to France, the kingdom of Naples 
and Sicily to Spain, Holland to England, Venice to the new 
Roman empire. A league similar to that which had united 
in antiquity in a single defensive group the independent 
republics of Greece, was prevailing at bottom for the com- 
mon defence of Europe over the rivalry of those Christian 
powers among themselves. It is no longer the religious 


oroBade of the middle ages^ bat the crusade of European 
nationality and civilization. 

Such was respectively the situation of Europe and of 
Turkey in the last days of the sixteenth century and the 
commencement of the seventeenth, at the advent of Mahomet 


The Venetian Sultana Safiyé, become Sultana Validé, 
mother of the emperor, had been during the whole life of 
Amurath III. his consort, the veritaWe and immovable 
grand vizier of the reign. As Livia and Agrippina had 
concealed from the Eomans the death of their husbands 
Augustus and Claudius, so, to manage the transition to and 
the possession of the future rei^n, the Sultana Safiyé had 
concealed from the Ottomans the death of Amurath, until 
the arrival at Constantinople of her son the Sultan Mahomet. 
This prince, who was awaiting the throne in the palace of 
Magnesia, was the last of the Turkish emperors in favor of 
whom the viziers or the Sultanas had to practise this court 


Mahomet III., sure of the vigilance of his mother 
around the throne, did not precipitate his journey towards 
Constantinople. He landed there with his personal court 
but the twelfth day after the death of his father. The 
moment of his elevation to the throne was the signal of 
death to all the princes his brothers guilty of having in their 
veins a drop of the same blood as he. ' Never had the 
prestige of monarchy cost so long a list of massacres. 

Amurath III. had had one hundred and two children by 
hb wives or by the numberless slaves of his harem. Twenty- 
seven daughters and twenty princes lived in the seraglio the 
day of his death. The constitutive law of the dynasty 
allowed the daughters to live on condition of destroying 
their male issue ; it ordered the immolation of the princes. 
Nineteen brothers of the Sultan, of all ages, from the cradle 
up to adolescence and to manhood, received the sentence of 
their execution on hearing the cannon of the seraglio an- 
nounce the death of their father. The Venetian Sultana 


Safijé, although Christian by oriçin, in oorrespondenoe with 
Christian queens and in confidential intimacy with her Vene- 
tian compatriots, was so familiarised with the bloody State 
necessity of the Ottomans, and so jealous of a rirai reign, 
that she does not appear to have opposed the least scruple 
or the least pity to so many murders. 

Among these victims to the unity of monarchical right, 
a prince especially endowed with M the gifts of nature, 
of genius, of education, excited the commiseration of the 
empire ; it was prince Mustapha, the second soft of Amurath, 
already mature in years, whom nature seemed to have 
made for the throne after the image of Soliman II. his 
great-grandfather, and whom policy had made for death. 
I)e0pite the discretion of the seraglio, the fame of the 
gracefulness, of the character, and of the natural genius of 
this young man had transpired throughout the empire. A 
mysterious popularity was attached to his name ; this popu- 
larity was but a title additional to execution. Mustapha, a 
pupil of the first lyric poet of the age, Baki (the immortal), 
who was living still, <Ûd not murmur against a deatii to 
which he knew himself condemned by birth. He wrote only 
the night which preceded his execution a touching and 
resigned elegy, which contained, in verses steeped in tears, 
his adieus to existence. Some verses of this elegy, which 
recall the mournful reproaches of the French poet André 
Chénier to hb executioners, exist still. André Ohénier was 
born like him at Constantinople. 

The domestic drama of this long massacre remained 
buried in horror without echo from the mutes who performed. 
Silence is necessary to State crimes. It is why the Oriental 
monarchies have plucked the tongue from their executioners. 
The crime of the night could be discovered the following 
day only by the nineteen bodies displayed in heaps b^ore the 
throne, and buried in the same mosque with their fatiier. 


Ferhad-Pasha, grown old in the wars of Persia, was 
appointed grand vizier in the place of Sinan-Pasha, who 
returned for the third time into his sumptuous exile of 
Malghara. Ferhad had espoused the daughter of the Sultana 
Safiye. This princess governed under her son Mahomet 
III. from the depths of the harem, still more absolutely than 
under Amurath. 


Feriiad, to avenge the incursions of the Gennans and of the 
Hungarians into Wallachia, called the army to war upon the 
Danube. The spahis refused to march if satisfaction was 
not given to their demands for largesses and privilèges. 
Ferhad armed against them the Janissaries, and dispersed 
their seditious assemblage. He banished the two former 
viziers, Cicala and Siawousch, although sons-in-law like him 
of the Sultana Safiyé. These two viziers were suspected of 
having been the secret instigators of the agitation of the 
spahis to cast discredit upon Ferhad. 

A massacre, like that of the Sicilian vespers, of the 
Turkish garrison of Giurgewo by the Wallachians, hastened 
the march of the army upon Wallachia. Scarcely on their 
route, the soldiers tore down by night the horsetails that 
floated before the tent of the grand vizier when in the field, 
and the golden bull that decorated the central' pillar of his 
pavilion. This symptom of the discontent of the troops 
appeared a presage of reverses. 

The old favorite of Amurath III., Ibrahim-Pasha, son- 
in-law also of the Venetian Validé, was appointed caïma- 
kam during the absence of Ferhad. The post of caïmakam 
was a sort of lieutenant-generalship of the empire and the 
capital, a species of universal and temporary dictature, which 
gave to the man invested with this title the whole authority 
of the grand vizier and of the generalissimo of Constantino- 
ple. Ibrahim, who aspired to the place of grand vizier for 
himself, used his authority and his influence but to damage 
his absent principal. 


While the grand vizier was superintending the passage 
of the army to the Wallachian side of the Danube, Ibrahim 
obtained from the young Sultan a decree for his death. His 
crime was to have said to the revolted spahis that, '^ if they 
did not return to discipline, their wives would be for ever 
barren." This malediction, impious to the Ottomans, appeared 
to his enemies an unpardonable outrage upon the soldiers. 

Instructed by his agents in the seraglio and by his wife 
of the machinations prepared at Constantinople against him, 
Ferhad, for the first time since the foundation of the empire, 
did not await with resignation the poison or bow-string of 
his master. He fled from the camp iJefore the arrival of his 


executioner with three thousand oavalrj of his household, 
and advanced upon Constantinople. 

The ffrand vizier Sinan, of whom Ibrahim had procured 
the recall, advanced on his side with twenty thousand Janis- 
saries in order to take command of the chiefless army. The 
two hostile ^rand viiiers encountered each other by chance on 
their opposite routes in the neighborhood of Ostranidja. 
*' The head of the rebel is mine, his treasures are yours," 
said Sinan to his Janissaries. Ferhad, intimidated by num- 
bers and by the enormity of his transgression, retired upon 
an eminence with his cavalry and thence contemplated the 
pillage of his tents and treasures by the Janissaries. Throw- 
mg himself afterward into the forests of Bulgaria, he arrived 
without being pursued at a farm which he owned not far 
from the capital The intercession of the Sultana Validé 
his mother-in-law, and the presents made in his name to the 
Sultan by his banker named Salomon, obtained his pardon. 
The Sultan sent him a Katti-scherif (an order without appeal 
by the sovereign himself, superior to every other order of 
the government) which authorized him to live in peace in his 
farm of Litrof. 

But the hatred of the caïmakam Ibrahim, which appeared 
to stop before the protection of Safiyé, pursued him to 
thb refuge. At the moment when the unfortunate Ferhad 
was beginning to receive the visits and the congratulations 
of his friends in his solitude, the bostandji-bascni came to 
take him to the prison of the Seven Towers, which was only 
the vestibule of execution. He was strangled juridically 
three days after, by the order of the caïmakam ratified by the 
Sultan. Safiyé tried in vain once more to save her protégé. 

An accident fatal to Ferhad had offended the Sultan, 
very jealous of his Sovereign authority. Cicala-Pasha, 
another son-in-law of the Validé, having received order to 
set out for the army of Hungary, wished to purchase the 
horses of Ferhad, then disgraced and exiled in his farm. 
The Sultana mother sent for Cicala and forbade him to pur- 
chase the stables of the former grand vizier. This injunc- 
tion seemed to Cicala an indication of the Intention of the 
Sultana to replace speedily her favorite in power. He 
related the circumstance to the Sultan, who felt indignant 
that hb mother should interdict covertly what he had com- 
manded openly. The head of Ferhad was delivered to his 



The campaign of Sinan in Wallachia oommenoed by 
reverses. The Turkish armj, after a long battle in the 
marshes of Kalougeran, perished to a man. Sinan himself, 
half-snbmerged by his horse in the quagmire, owed his safety 
but to the vigor of a soldier of his escort named Hassan, 
who received from this circumstance the surname of Hassan 
of the Marshy become subsequently illustrious by his cour- 
age. A Wallachian prisoner, devoting himself to death, set 
fire to the powder of the Ottoman army. 

The grand vizier, after having recomposed the army, 
marched upon Tergowisoht. The mdependent prince of the 
Wallaohians, Michel, expelled him from it after a siege of 
some days. Sinan fell back anew upon Bucharest and upon 
Giurgewo, with the remnant of his troops. Michel again 
overtook him on his passage of the bridge of the Danube, 
and bombarding the bridge beneath the feet of the army, he 
ingulf him with his whole artQlery in the river. 

During these disasters of the grand vizier in Wallachia, 
an Austrian and Hungarian army, under the command of 
prince Mansfcld, besieged the fortified city of Grau, in Hun- 
gary. The son of the grand vizier, Sinan, lost here a third 
army in endeavoring to relieve Grau. Grau succumbed after 
the fall of its. gallant defender, Kara-Ali (Black Ali), who 
was slain upon the breach. Despite a capitulation which 
assured the women and the children of the Turks their lives 
and their property, the pillagings, the ravishings, the massa- 
cres of the Germans and the Hungarians at Grau stained 
the good faith and the humanity of the victors. The monu- 
ments, the statues, the paintings, the libraries, respected by 
tiie Turks at the time of the conquest of Grau, disappeared 
beneath the sword and the fire of the German soldiery. 

A whole side of the imperial edifice appeared to totter 
towards the Danube after these reverses. Ibraïl, Varna, 
Kilia, Ismail, Silistria, Rutschuk, Bucharest, Akkerman, fell 
into ihQ hands of the confederate Wallachians, Germans and 
Hungarians. The terror ebbed along to the seraglio. The 
Sultan ordered public prayers on the square of Okmeïdan to 
avert the dismemberment of the European frontiers. An 
earthquake^ responded by calamities of nature to those of 
war. The grand vizier, returned almost alone to Constant!- 

112 HI8T0BT or TtniKlT. 

Dople, hnmbled himself beneath his disgraces, and retired for 
the fourth time into the exile of viziers, Mal^hara. 

A son of the Saltan's nurse, Lala-Mohammed, was 
appointed grand yizier by the influenoe of the women of the 
harem. He was the son of a poor villager, of the environs 
of Magnesia, entered first into the palace as simple tchaousch, 
thence promoted from g^ade to grade up to the rank of def> 
terdar, owmg to his title of Kwter-brother of the son of 
Amurath, become in fine preceptor, or lala, of Mahomet III. 
in his boyhood; domestic favor raised him for three days 
to the summit of dignities. A natural death prevented him 
from enjoying it. 

Sinan-Pasha, although aged some eighty years, was re- 
called from his exile of Malghara to lend once more his sage 
experience to the perils of the throne. It was his fifth 
reign. Age had taken nothing from his ambition or from 
his roughness. The Ottoman historians compare him to the 
Roman Marius seven times exiled, seven times consul, always 

Sinan, despite his complicity with the favorite Ibrahim 
the caïmakam in the ruin of Ferhad, declared himself, from 
the first divan, the implacable enemy of the favorite. It was 
necessary to have some one on whom to cast the shame and 
the reverses of the Ottoman misfortunes. " It is you," said 
he to Ibrahim, " who in your quality of caïmakam have 
brought upon the nation die disasters of th(^e campaigns ; 
you have sent but insubordinate soldiers and incompetent 
generals.'' And as Ibrahim sought to stammer a justifica- 
tion before the Sultan, Sinan arose, and dragging Ibrahim 
out of the hall by his cincture, with the impetuosity and 
vigor of a young man : " It is said that I am decrepit,'' 
cried he, in a voice of thunder ; " if Ibrahim affects to believe 
in my debility, let him come down into the court, let him try 
me, whether body to body by wrestling, or on horseback 
with our sabres, and let the Sultan give the government to 
the victor." The Sultan, blushing for his inaction in the 
flower of his youth before an old man to whom the safety 
of the empire had given back the verdure and the vehemence 
of his young days, yielded at last to the entreaties of Sinan, 
and marched in spring with a hundred and fifty thousand 
men to the Danube. 

Sinan died, unfortunately, on the eve of the campaign 
which he had proposed, prepared, and was going to conduct* 


His heritage equalled the fortune of a king. Europe, Afiriea 
and Asia nad accomalated it daring bis long Ufe. The 
inventory of his treasure, preserved to our days, enumerates 
twenty boxes fuU of ingots of gold bullion, fifteen strings 
of large pearls, thirty knots of diamonds, twenty urns of 
gold dust, twenty ewers of the same metal, a set of chess, 
seven table-cloths of leather bespangled with diamonds, 
. sixteen writing-desks, sixteen horse-saddles, thirty-four stir- 
rups, thirty-two cuirasses encrusted with rubies, one hundred 
and forty helmets, one hundred and twenty girdles, table 
services in enchased silver, six hundred sable furs six hun- 
dred lynx skins, thirty pelisses of black fox skins, two thou- 
sand pieces of stuffs of interwoven gold and silk, nine hun- 
dred pelisses of Russian furs, sixty bushels of pearls, six 
hundred thousand ducats in gold and two millions of piasters 
in silver. 

These movable valuables and the treasures found at 
death in the cellars of the generals and the viziers attest the 
fear of confiscation, the vicious constitution of property in 
Turkey. This unproductive and hidden wealth has the 
effect of impoverishing, instead of enriching, a country. 
The only useful wealth is that which is confided to the soil 
and which is reproduced by labor. The gold of Mexico 
impoverished the Spaniards ; the treasures of the East and 
of Europe were going to beggar the Ottomans. 

Ibrahim rose at last to the rank of grand vizier in the 
place of Sinan. 


The Sultana Validé dreaded the departure of her son 
for the Danube. In her despair at seeing removed away 
from her the son under the name of whom she virtually 
reigned, Safiyé, although Venetian by country and Christian 
by remembrance, plotted a general massacre of the Chris- 
tians of the whole empire, in imitation of Catherine de 
Medici, her model, who had inebriated her son with the 
blood of the Saint Bartholomew. The horror of this crime 
aborted it in the harem where it was conceived. Tfie Sultan 
confined himself to banishing from Constantinople all the 
Greek Christians who were not fixed there by their family 
established immemorially in the capital. To console his 
mother for his departure, he added to her dotation three 


thousaod piasters per day, a present of three hundred thou* 
sand piasters per year, and a million of piasters for slipper 
or toilet money. 

Mahomet III. departed from Constantinople the 21st of 
June, 1596. The grand visier Ibrahim commanded the 
army. The secretary of state, Seadeddin, the light of the 
council for two reigns back, directed the civil and diplomatic 
business under the grand yizier. Seadeddin, a first-class 
man in a secondary situation, was the soul of the expedition. 

Arrived before the walls of Erlau, in Hungary, the 
Sultan summoned the city to surrender. ^^ I swear by the 
horse I mount and by the sabre that girds my loins," said ho 
in his summons to the Hungarian army of Erlau, " that I 
will leave you free to retire without obstacle from the for- 
tress." Erlau fell in twelve days before the cannonade of 
Ibrahim. The Hungarians, who had flayed alive, during the 
preceding campaign, the Turkish prisoners at Hatwan, were, 
in reprisal, all immolated. 

The archduke Maximilian, Sigismund the revolted prince 
of Transylvania, and prince Michel of Wallachia, advanced 
with three armies combined to dispute Erlau with the Turks. 
The vanguards had driven back Hassan-Sokolli, the son of 
the funous grand viiier of this name, upon the army of the 
Sultan. Some one proposed retreat "It would be un- 
exampled," said Sokolli in the council, " that a padischah of 
the Ottomans had ever turned his back to the enemy without 
necessity." The secretary of state, Seadeddin, accustomed 
to the energy of the resolutions of Soliman, supported 
Hassan-Sokolli : " This," said he with a courageous sincer- 
ity before the wavering Sultan, " is not a crisis in which it 
will be safe to employ seconds ; the presence of the padis- 
chah himself is commanded by honor and by necessity." 

Meanwhile the Sultana Validé was conjuring her son to 
return to Constantinople. The Sultan inclined to the coun- 
sels of his mother, but he desired that his departure should 
appear to the army as imposed by the viiiers. " My lala," 
wrote he to the grand vizier, " what inconvenience would 
there be in my departure for Constantinople while leaving 
thee here as my substitute ? " 

The grand vizier and Ibrahim dared to oppose his desire 
of leaving the army. The presence of the padischah could 
alone restore the discipline and the zeal of the troops. 
Mahomet III., overcome rather than convinced, attended the 


26th of October, 1596, at the battle against the archduke 
Maximilian, who commanded the Germans and the Hunga- 
rians. It was, since Orsova under Bajazet I., and since 
Varna under Amurath II., the most decisive duel between 
the Turks and the Christians for the possession of the 
Danube. Four hundred thousand combatants of both sides 
were extended in two lines, separated by a ground miry and 
almost liquified by the first rains of Autumn. The right of 
the Turks was composed, contrary to usage, of the Asiatic 
generals and troops who had ordinarily to yield the pre- 
cedence to the troops of Europe. The army of Adrianople 
formed the left. Cicala, son of the renegade of Genoa, 
naturalized by so many services on land and sea, commanded 
the van with the impetuous cavalry of Diarbekir. 

The Sultan, inexperienced in war, was placed upon an 
eminence a little in the rear, at the middle of the line of 
battle; the sacred standard floated above his head; six 
Asiatic squadrons of choice troops watched over his person ; 
Seadeddin, as good a counsellor in war as in peace, was by 
his side to inspire him with the moment for action; the 
baggage of the army formed a rampart around the eminence. 
The Janissaries, distinct from the rest of the army, were 
grouped around a church in ruins that overlooked the marsh. 
One hundred and fifty pieces of cannon, fastened to each 
other by chains, according to the awkward usage of the 
Persians and Turks, presented a formidable but immova- 
ble citadel between the Janissaries and the Asiatics. Maxi- 
milian, as a consummate general, disposing his army in the 
shape of a cone to break the Turks in their centre, cleft 
with the first charge the line that covered the eminence from 
which Mahomet was contemplating the battle. His squad- 
rons, passing the breach laid open through the severed ranks 
oi the Turks, ascended at a gallop the eminence, and pene- 
trated sabre in hand as far as the imperial tent. The 
Sultan, surprised by this throng of Hungarian cavalry who 
inundated on all sides his retreat, was saved but by the 
pages, the wood-carriers, the tent-planters, the camel-drivers, 
the cooks, armed at random with hatchets, with knives, with 
turnspits, with palisade-stakes, which they found at hand 
to cover their master. Seadeddin at last sheltered him 
behind a dense line of baggage-waggons and camels, in the 
tent of Younisbeg, general of the Mouteferrikas. "Don't 
fear," said he to the Sultan ; " patience will bring us victory, 


and fortune will suooeed to reverses.'' These words pro* 
noonced with coolness in the midst of the panic, when the 
hearts of men, according to the ener^tio expression of the 
Koran, mounted into the throat, revired the hope of Ma- 
homet. He had thrown upon his shoulders the mantle of 
the Prophet, that most holy of all relics with the Mussul- 
mans, under which one could not be abandoned by Allah. 

At sight of this the scattered Janissaries instantly ral- 
lied ; Cicala, who had placed his yanguard of Arabian cav- 
alry behind a wood, and who had let pass the Hungarian tor- 
nado in order to pour, at the decisive moment, upon their 
squadrons disordered by the charge, flew to the assistance 
of the Sultan. The assault of the imperial tents by the 
Germans had sunk into pillage ; the soldiers, dazzled by the 
richness of these stui& and of this furniture, divided them 
amongst them in fragments, greedy of spoils before the 
victory. Already the money-chests of the army, broken 
open by means of axe-blows, rolled out their aspers and 
golden ducats under their hands, when Cicala crushed them 
beneath a charge of twenty thousand sabres. The Hunga- 
rians and the Germans, disbanded, fell or fled, to be immedi- 
ately drowned in the mire of the marsh. The two wings of 
the Turks, a moment cut off from the centre, wheeled round 
the banner of the Prophet, displayed anew upon the emi- 
nence. They hemmed in the army of Maximilian, deprived 
of his cavalry and of his artillery, and changed a false 
victory into an immense flight. Fifty thousand Germans 
perished in the marshes ; one hundred and twenty pieces of 
cannon remained bemired in the hands of the Turks. Before 
the setting of the sun, they saw no longer a foe before them. 

The grand vizier Ibrahim completed the victory by a 
pursuit at the head of his most rapid cavalry of Asia. The 
Sultan, returned to his tents, received the congratulations 
of his generals ; he had, owing to Seadeddin, reseized in a 
few hours the vanished prestige of Ottoman armies and the 
provinces detached a moment from the empire. Both the 
victory and his life he owed to the manœuvre and the cour- 
age of Cicala, who had not despaired amid the defeat, and 
who did not fear to attack with a vanguard a whole army. 
At the moment when Cicala entered the imperial tent to kiss 
the hand of his master, Mahomet proclaimed him grand 
vizier, the sole post worthy of such a service : " He who 
has saved the empire ought to govern it," said he to Cicala, 


in delivering him the seals which he carried beneath hifl 

At the same time the Sultan, in recompensing the gene- 
ral, feared to discontent thé favorite of his father and his 
own, Ibrahim. On his return from the pursuit, Ibrahim 
was still ignorant of what had taken place in the tent of 
Mahomet. He was preparing to exercise the following day, 
at a review of the troops, the functions of grand vizier ; no 
one, not even the Sultan, wished to sadden him in his 
triumph by apprising him of his removal. Seadeddin repre- 
sented to the chamberlain, the eunuch Ghaznefer, the embar- 
rassment and the danger of a longer silence, which would 
leave the seals at once to two grand viziers and the State 
without a government under a double authority. 

Ghaznefer, although loved by his master, did not dare 
reproach him with his timidity. The high-groom Ahmed, a 
rough Asiatic accustomed to the frankness of camps, under- 
took to get the point decided in an indirect and parabolic 
form : " It is to-morrow that your Highness is to pass the 
army in review," said he to the Sultan with an interrogating 
look that spoke a double meaning ; " it is however necessary 
that your slaves should know what horse you will mount in 
passing before the troops." 

Mahomet, who understood from this hint the meaning 
of the groom, made no reply as to the choice of the horse, 
but addressing himself to the grand chamberlain Ghaznefer ; 
" Go," said he, withdraw the seals of the empire from Ibra- 
him and take them to Cicala.* 


Cicala was displaced as suddenly as he had been elevated. 
His military severity was distasteful to the army relaxed by 
the indiscipline of the recent campaigns. Thirty thousand 
Asiatics of Caramania, of Bithynia and of Saroukhan, whom 

* Wo were above told that the seals had been already delivered to 
Cicala, and not figuratively but corporeally, from ** under the caftan of the 
Sultan." It should be therefore recollected that there is a duplicate of 
the article, by which one copy remained always in the hands of the Sul- 
tan. At the same time, it might be asked why, in the present case, the 
other was not ordered by the Sultan rather to himself, who now had none, 
than to Cicala, already supplied ? The only answer I can make is that 
repeatedly suggested, that our author seems above regarding these small 
discrepancies. — Translator. 


he fiad erased from the pay-roll for being absent from their 
colours, traverg2d in tumultuous groups the provinces of 
Europe, and, choosing themselves chiefs of their nation, 
sowed revolt, pillage and terror in Asia. 

The Sultana Validé, joined in intrigue with the favorite 
Ibrahim, protested in her letters against the appointment of 
Cicala. These letters met her son at Khirmenli, on his 
return from Hungary to Constantinople. On reading these 
letters of his mother, he withdrew the seals from Cicala and 
restored them to Ibrahim. All the enemies of the favor- 
ite, Cicala, Seadoddin, the high-eroom Ahmed were dismissed 
from their places. The age and the fame of Seadeddin pre- 
served him alone from exile. The Sultana Validé came to 
meet her son on the route of Adrianople. 

His triumphal entry to Constantinople rivalled the tri- 
umphs of Soliman II. An ambassador of Persia sent by 
Schah- Abbas dazzled the eyes of the Turks, by a gorgeous 
train of a thousand cavalry, and by presents worthy of the 
possessor of Ormus. The ambassador of Venice, Capello, 
and the ambassador of France enhanced by their presence 
and their congratulations the glory of the victory of Keresz- 
tes. France was at this moment exhorting Mahomet III. 
to join his forces with those of the king to aid the Moors 
of Spain against the Spaniards. 


Civil disturbances in the Crimea, announced by some 
assassinations in the reigning family of Gheraï, a weak cam- 
paign in Hungary terminated by reverses, forced the Sul- 
tana mother and her son to abandon the grand vizier Ibra- 
him to public opinion. 

After some vain endeavors to find a man at the same 
time capable and submissive to the will of the Venetian 
regent, resort was had to the prison of the Seven Towers for 
Hassan-Pasha, the embezzler of Egypt, and to him was given 
the government. He gained the favor of the Sultana by 
promising her riches of which she grew more greedy with 
years ; he lost it by asking of the Sultan the head of his favor- 
ite, the eunuch Ghaznefer, grand chamberlain of the seraglio. 
Reconducted the 8th of April, 1598, by the bostandji-baschi 
into his prison of the Seven Towers, ho was strangled there 


fax. days after. His treasures disappeared with him. His 
treasurer took off the secret in his flight. 

Djerrah-Mohammed, second vizier, a man of little hril- 
liancy, received the seals with these words from the hands 
of the Sultan : " If thou failest to do thy duty, thou wilt 
be quartered, and thy name will be covered with an everlast- 
ing infamy." 

Under this vizier, the Austrian and the Hungarian 
generals, Schwarzenberg and Palfy, took by surprise the 
city of Baab. The Turkish pasha, with a sabre in each 
hand, defended himself till death in the gate opened to the 
Hungarians by the treachery of the inhabitants. His three 
hundred soldiers fled for refuge into the powder magazine, 
had themselves blown up to escape torture. The serdar of 
the army of Hungary tried to wash out this affront in the 
blood of the Germans. During his march upon the Theïss, 
the discontented Janissaries revolted, cut the cords of his 
tent that it might fall upon his head, beat him with sticks, 
and left him life only on the supplications of their aga. 

Othman the Earless, so named from having lost his ears, 
which were cut off on the field of battle, in Persia, saved 
the capital, Ofen, besieged by me Germans. Twenty thou- 
sand Wallachians, \mder the order of their prince Michel, re- 
appeared in Wallachia against Hafiz-Pasha, military gover- 
nor of this province, to challenge the Turks. They marched 
about the country the effigy of a woman dressed in the uni- 
form and the arms of Hafiz-Pasha. The laughter of the 
Wallachians covered with shame the brow of the Turks. 
Hafiz,. vanquished, fell back upon Schumla. His shame 
recoiled on the grand vizier Djerrah-Mohammed, who was 
dismissed, and gave up the seals for the third time to 

The favorite departed again for the Danube, at the head 
of forty thousand Janissaries ; a katti-scherif of the Sultan 
abandoned to him the life of the seraskier of the army of 
Europe, Satourdji-Pasha, his enemy. The aga of the Janis- 
saries, Hassan, was commanded to execute the seraskier. 
Arrived at Adrianople, the aga invited the seraskier to a 
banquet in his tent ; at the close of the repast, he drew from 
his bosom the katti-scherif and made a sign to the headsmen 
to massacre his guest. The head of Satourdji rolled upon 
the floor. Ibrahim, absent from Adrianople during this exe- 
cution, swore that it was the crime of Hassan. The perfid- 

120 mcrroBT of tubkxt. 

ioosneas of the ScUves oombined in this favorite with ambi* 
tion and adulation, the vices of these barbarians, ill-oorered 
by the varnish of courts. He marched upon Gran and re- 
conquered that citadel, lost in the campaign before the last. 

The Khsm of the Crimea, Ghazi-Gheraï, brought fifty 
thousand Tartars to the army. But the murder of Satourdji 
made him dread every thing from Ibrahim. The two 
generals never joined their respective troops into a single 
army, and conferred with one another but on horseback in 
the open plain, attended by an equal number of cavalry. 
In autumn the Khan of the Tartars refused to winter upon 
the Danube, and took back his cavalry to the Crimea. 

Negotiations with the court of Austria were tried during 
the winter ; no understanding could be come to. Ibrahim, 
who desired peace, set himself, by a severe discipline and by 
a rifforous repression of all violence and all pillage, to 
regaming^to the Ottomans the affection of the Hungarians, 
of the Wallachians, and of all the Christian populations of 
those frontiers. He effaced between them and his soldiers, 
by a wise tolerance, the antipathies of religion; the Hunga- 
rians, the Servians, the Wallachians, swelled voluntarily the 
ranks of the Turkish army against the Germans, more undis- 
ciplined and quite as barbarous at that time as their enemies. 

The war of Hungary was pursued without results worthy 
of history from the first year of the seventeenth century 
(1600) to 1608. Ibrahim, who directed it more like a 
statesman than a warrior, had transported, so to say, the 
government to Belgrade. 

The Sultana Validé, Safiyé, maintained herself in power 
at Constantinople by her ascendant over her son. She con- 
firmed this ascendant by making a present to Mahomet III. 
of a slave of incomparable beauty, who gave him an heir to 
the throne, Selim. These beautifril slaves introduced by the 
Validé into the harem of her son were the confidants and 
instruments of her policy. The habit of government, say 
the Venetian accounts of the epoch, was become an in- 
domitable passion in this woman. Never since Koxelana 
had the harem so completely swayed the divan. The nurse 
Raziyé, a go-between of this feminine court of Amurath 
III., had just died, leaving immense wealth and a son, pasha 
of Aleppo and beglerbeg of Erzeroum ; she was honored with 
a magnificent funeral; her tomb arose like that of an 
empress near the imperial palace of Beschiktasch. Cicala 


the (Genoese, and Ghaznefer the Hungarian cunucb, confirmed 
and enriched like Ibrahim in their high dignities of the 
court by the Validé, brought to live with them as inheritors 
of their wealth some young relatives whom they obliged 
to embrace Islamism. This rei^n of women, whom to 
please is the sole merit required in favorites, began to stir up 
from time to time the indignation of the true Ottomans. 

The corps of the spahis remaining at Constantinople for 
the guard of the Sultan accused the Jewess Kira, ^vorite 
of the Sultana Validé, of selling timars or military fiefe for 
money instead of giving them to merit and to valor. This 
traffic of military honors led the spahis to demand the head 
of the Jewess. The caïmakam Khalil, who governed the 
capital in the absence of Ibrahim, did not dare to refuse this 
bloody satisfEtction to the spahis. Surrounded in his palace 
by an outbreak of these soldiers, the caïmakam was com- 
pelled to send an order to the Jewess to appear before him 
with her throe sons. To give up the victim to the revolters 
appeared to him the only means of averting their fury from 
the head of the Sultana mother, his protectress. Kira was 
cut to pieces as were also her three sons on ascending the 
steps of the palace of the caïmakam. Their still palpitating 
members were nailed by the soldiers to the doors of the 
viziers and of the pashas accused of having tampered with 
this woman in the commerce of court favors. 

The empire lost, the same year, its greatest statesman in 
the historian Seadeddin, and its greatest poet in the immor- 
tal Baki. Another historian, the secretary of the Janissa- 
ries, Ali, author of the Book of Victory^ of the narrative 
of the campaign of Georgia and of the war of Hungary, 
died at the close of the same year. An annalist of integrity, 
impartiality and courage, Ali does not flatter even his nation 
in his narratives. He understands that to flatter the pres- 
ent is to corrupt the future. He is a witness for posterity. 
The Turks owe him more than glory, they owe him the truth 
respecting three reigns of their history. 


Meanwhile prince Michel of Wallachia, intimidated and 

kept in check by the presence of Ibrahim on the Danube, 

at length solicited peace. Ibrahiip received a Wallachian, 

his ambassador, named Dime, and sent him to Constantino- 

Vol. III.— 6 


pie to make his proposals to the divan. The eiiniioh Hafii- 
Ahmed, fonnerlj victim, during the Wallachian war, of a 
perfidy of Dimo, contrived to obtain from the mufti afehoa 
or decision which condemned the Wallachian to execution. 
Hafiz- Ahmed, their caïmakam, had him hung by hooks of 
iron to a wall to expire in slow agonies. This violation of 
the safe conduct and title of ambassador enraged Ibrahim ; 
he complained of it in his letters to the Sultana Validé, who 
procured the dismissal of Hafiz- Ahmed and the appointment 
in his place of one of her protégés, Hassan the Fruiterer. 

The Austrians, during the negotiations, dreading the 
defection of Michel from their cause, had him assassinated 
in Transylvania. Ibrahim reopened, through the medium 
of the Khan of the Tartars, negotiations of peace with 
Venice. Death surprised him at Belgrade at the moment 
when he was to sign the peace. His remains, brought back 
to Constantinople, were buried with honors almost sovereign, 
in the floor of the mosque of the princes. The favorite, 
become a statesman and a warrior by the long exercise of 
power, a^ired, like the first SokoUi, to consolidate rather 
than to oonquer. He was the first of the grand viziers who 
did not blush to propose treaties of peace in the name of his 
master. His death perpetuated the wars which his wisdom 
was about to allay. 

The Sultana Validé gave the dignity of grand vizier to 
her protégé the caSmakam, Hassan the Fruiterer. The 
Sultan made Hassan a present of the tents, the horses, the 
camels, the mules, the arms of Ibrahim. He promised him 
even his widow, the Sultana Aïsche, in marriage after the 
due lapse of the months of widowhood. Hassan set out 
with the promptitude of a soldier for the banks of the Dan- 
ube. Sixty thousand Janissaries and spahis joined him in 
the plain of Semlin, on the left bank of the river in front 
of Belgrade. 

The Austrians, commanded by the archduke Ferdinand, 
besieged the Turkish fortress of Kanisoha. Hassan-Teryaki, 
or Hassan the Opium-smokery defended it with the heroism 
of an Ottoman of other days. At the approach of the 
grand vizier, the Austrians abandoned the siege ; their can- 
nons and their thousands of slaves remained in the trenches. 
Hassan-Teryaki, seated at the gate of the city, with sacks of 
piasters at his side, distributed gold pieces to all those of his 
soldiers who brought him heads of his enemies. The arch- 


dake in the precipitation of his flight had left his tent erect, 
mih all its furniture, in the forced camp. Hassan entered 
it, offered a prayer upon the carpet ; then, drawing his sabre, 
*he cleft with a single blow the throne of the archduke, sent 
it flying about in fragments, and seated himself proudly upon 
the wrecks. Twenty thousand prisoners, sixty cannons, all 
the treasures and all the baggage of the Austrian army fell 
in a few days into the hands of Hassan-Teryaki. He aban- 
doned all to his soldiers, reserving to himself but glory. 
The tent of Ferdinand and the cannons were made a present 
of to the grand vizier. 

The Sultan also, to recompense the grand vizier, sent on 
to him, with a dower of forty thousand cold ducats, the Sul- 
tana Aïsche, widow of Ibrahim, whom he had reserved for 
him US an incitement and a prize of the campaign. 


During these successes in Hungary, an Asiatic rebel, 
named Karayazidje (or the black writer) insurrected the 
Arabs and the Turcomans against the governors of Mahomet 
III., and bore off victory upon victory over his generals. 
Exemption from taxation was the lever of this armed tribune 
to agitate the populations, ill-subdued, of Cilicia and Cappa- 
docia. The son of the famous vizier SokoUi, sent against 
Karayazijde, towards Cœsarea of Cappadocia, annihilated at 
length this rebel, who died of his wounds in the mountains 
of JDjanik, a branch of the Taurus. His partisans cut the 
body in pieces and buried each of its members in a different 
country, so that his tomb, discovered by the Turks, should 
not give up at least his entire remains to profanation. 

Hassan the Fool, his brother, succeeded to his popularity. 
He evoked anew the insurrection in the depths of Asia, 
rolling back with innumerable multitudes upon Sokolli, who 
was obliged to take refuge within the walls of Tokat. The 
rebefe ravaged with impunity the valley of Tokat; they 
sacked the garden of Sokolli, situated in the environs, and 
called on account of its magnificence and its delights the 
garden of paradise, Djennet-baghi. The parterres, instead, 
of natural flowers sparkled with rubies and precious stones, 
imitating the form of flowers and suroassing them in splen- 
dor. These treasures of Persian art became ornaments for 
the arms and for the horse-gear of the barbarians. 


Tho Saltan, to punish the defeat of Sokolli, appointed in 
his place Khosrew-Pasha, seraskier of the army of Tokat 
against the partisans of Karajazidjo. But Sokolli was so 
proud of his name, of his wealth, of his dignities, that no one 
dared inform him of his dismissal. He menaced with death 
whoever should speak to him of descending from his rank 
of seraskier. His kayaza and his own hrother escaped with 
difficulty from his fury for daring to counsel him to obey 
the orders of the Sultan. He continued to defend Tokat 
against the rebels, with the intrepidity and the fanaticism of 
a hero, when one morning, as he was seated as usual before 
the door of his palace to give orders to the troops, a Turkish 
arquebusier, posted upon an eminence, took aim at him and 
laid him dead, but not degraded, on his carpet. Tokat fell 
with him. The chief of the rebels, Hassan the Fool, inun- 
dated with his hordes Asia Minor, and invested in Kutai- 
ah the new seraskier Khosrew-Pasha. Winter alone sus- 
pended his progresses. 

Gicala-Pasha, appointed capitan-pasha like his father, 
defended the coasts of Africa against Andrew Doria and 
Don John of Cordova, and ravaged the coasts of Italy. 
Stuhlveissenbourg, the sepulchre of the kings of Hungary and 
seat of their coronation, fell into the hands of the grand 
vizier. Ofen and Pesth, separated only by the Danube, 
were besieged, the one by the Austrians, the other by the 
Turks. The Khan of the Tartars, Ghazi-Gheraï, returned 
with his troops into Hungary since the death of Ibrahim, 
contented himself with ravaging the country wherever he 
passed, and chanting ditties in the Turkish tongue upon the 
excellence of the wines of Tokai. The war was incoherent 
udd lax, as if from weariness of fighting. 

These relaxations of the war in Europe and these dis- 
asters in Asia exasperated the patriotism of the spahis at 
Constantinople. They drew up through their writers, and 
brought, with arms in their hands, a seditious petition t^ the 
Sultan, to demand of him the heads of the Hungarian 
eunuch Ghaznefer, of the ex-caïmakam Hassan the Clock- 
maker j and of another Hassan surnamed Timakdji, who 
occupied in the divan the rank of fourth vizier. These 
heads, said the spahis, were to expiate the corruptions of the 
seragUo, and the baneful counsels given to the Sultan by his 
favorites. The empire could be regenerated but in the blood 
of its corrupters. 


Mahomet III., besieged in tis seraglio by his own defend- 
ers, appeared before them upon a throne raised in the ulti- 
mate court, less as a sovereign than as a suppliant. Ha 
disputed with them in vain, one by one, the heads of his 
dearest confidants; if one was conceded him another was 
exacted. Hassan the Glockmaker, brought forth from the 
prison of the Seven Towers, harangued his executioners, and 
proved to them, with the orders of the grand vizier in hand, 
that he had done but his duty in Asia. He was discharged 
as justified. Hassan Tirnakdji implored life on his knees 
before the spahis, and obtained mercy by the intercession of 
the Janissaries. But Othman the k^lar-aga, and Ghaznefer 
chief of the white eunuchs, more odious because they were 
more dear to their master and to his mother, sacrificed with 
tears by Mahomet, delivered their heads, though innocent, 
to the sabres of the spahis. The Sultan was compelled to 
attend at the execution, to salute the troops b^ore the 
corpses, as if to thank them for the crime, and devour his 
shame and sorrow in the secrecy of his harem. 


The grand vizier, called home by urgent letters of the 
Sultana Validé, hastened secretly to Constantinople to restore 
order and to avenge those crimes. Arrived at the gates of 
the capital, Hassan the Fruiterer did not dare enter but by 
night, for fear the spahis should forbid him to pass the gates. 
He slipped furtively into the palace. The Sultan sent a 
cnnuch to congratulate him on nis return, and to assure him 
of his favor and his support. During the night, the caïma- 
kam Mahmoud-Pasha, although his enemy, and the two 
judges of the army, came to concert with hun the re-estab- 
lishment of authority and the punishment of the guilty. 
The mufbi, whom he expected to justify his severities by a 
fetwa, did not attend. The spahis, informed of the measures 
preparing against them, kept a close watch upon him in his 
house, and had wrested from him a fetwa of death against 
the grand vizier. The aga of the Janissaries and the two 
grand judges of the army, intimidated by this fetwa of the 
mufti, abandoned basely the cause of Hassan and imdertook 
to concur in executing the decree of death. 

Meanwhile Hassan, deserted in his palace by the natural 
supporters of order, felt without weakness the void which 

126 HI8T0BT OF TtniKST. 

waa fbnntDg anmnd him. He wrote a note to tlie Saltan 
idierein he traced to him the eondact to follow : ^ Mah- 
moud, aga of the JaDiaearies, betrays na,'' said he ; " he is in 
concert with Uie rebels ; he has promised them thirtj thou- 
sand ducats for overthrowing me ; here is what you are to 
answer to the report which he is going ta address you: 
What my vizier does, he does by my order ; I wish that no 
one else shall intermeddle in the high affairs of the gov- 
ernment^^ Hassan demanded that in the ensuing night the 
head of the traitor Mahmoud should expiate his intrigues 
and discourage his accomplices. 

Mahomet III. accorded him the Katti-scherif which 
legalized the execution of the aga. The grand chamberlain 
Kaxim was charged with the execution. But Mahmoud, 
who suspected the snare, kept out of the way of Kazim by 
concealing himself in one of the barracks of the Janissaries. 
In the morning a military sedition raged unrepressed in the 


Hassan the Fruiterer, no longer expecting succor only 
through his courage and the indignation of all the patri- 
otic Mussulmans, barricaded himscË in his palace, and kept 
at bay the whole day the spahis by his attitude. At sunset, 
ho shut himself up in a kiosk adjoining the apartment of 
the Sultana Aïsche, his betrothed, who was already residing 
in his palace, but into whose chamber he had not yet the 
right to enter, because the ceremonies of his nuptials yriih. 
the widow of Ibrahim were not entirely accomplished. 
This inviolable asylum of the harem covered him until night 
against the searches of the spahis. The darkness permitted 
him to escape by a gate of the garden, and to install him- 
self in the very house of the aga of the Janissaries, Mah- 
moud, of whom he had the day previous demanded the head. 
From there he during the night sent messengers to all the 
generals reputed faithful, to give them orders to assemble at 
the break of day with their soldiers and their servants armed 
in the court of the mosque of Soliman, in front of the house 
of the affa of the Janissaries. 

At uie break of day the porch, the square, the court of 
the palace of the aga resembled a camp under arms. The 
grand vizier said the morning prayer in the mosque, then 


placing himself upon <me of the upper steps of the peristyle, 
he read to the multitude an address of the Sultan to his 

" Janissaries, my brave servants," said this address, " I 
thank youl My favor is lastingly yours; from the reign 
of my ancestors up to mine you have been irreproachable. 
Continue to do your duty and aid my grand vizier in punish- 
ing the miscreant rebels; my favor and my friendship are 
with you." 


The Janissaries, moved by these words of the padischah 
and by the presence of Hassan the Fruiterer^ a soldier like 
them before being vizier, swore to merit the eulogies of the 
Sultan and to repress the rebellion of the spahis. '^ Kemove 
instantly the faithless mufti," cried they to Hassan. — ^^ Be it 
as you desire," replied Hassan. 

He forthwith convoked the oumelas and the five viziers 
to a general divan in the mosque. All attended with thQ 
exception of the capitan-pasha Cicala, the Genoese, who left 
himself to be brought forcibly by the chiaoux, so as to protest 
in advance against the rash resolutions about to be promul- 
gated by a tumultuous divan. While the divan was deliber- 
ating, the officers of the Janissaries parleyed with the spahis 
encamped on the place of the Hippodrome. The spahis 
rejected all overtures of peace. 

Two chamberlains brought from the seraglio to the 
mosque of Soliman a firman of the Saltan which ratified the 
deposition of the mufti, and appointed in his place Mustapha- 
Effendi, an oulema celebrated for his learning and his vir- 
tues. Another firman made Ferhad-Pasha aga of the Janis- 
saries in the place of Mahmoud, absconded the day before 
from his palace. The new mufti pronounced without hési- 
tât log the disbandment of the revolted spahis and the exe- 
cution of their officers. Ferhad-Pasha leaped on horseback, 
drew along with him the Janissaries and the people, swept 
the Hippodrome from the spahis who crowded the place, and 
took by storm the Khan of Lead, a vast rotunda roofed in 
this metal, of which the spahis had made themselves a 
fortress. Before the prayer of noon, the sedition, grappled 
resolutely, had completely disappeared from the streets of 
Constantinople and given back majesty to the palace. 


Some rapid executions of the demagogues of the bar- 
racks confirmed the yictory of Hassan. Othman Poriaz, 
one of his old companions of war, confessed before him his 
fault, which he attributed to the suggestions of the mufti, 
and demanded a sole grace not to be strangled like women, 
but io be decapitated like a soldier. Hassan accorded him 
this ^race, as also to Oghuz, another repentant chief of the 
spahis. AH the accomplices of the revolt pointed out by the 
informers were hunted down sabre in hand. One of the 
most guilty, Djizmi, to escape from Constantinople, had him- 
self enshrouded and transported in a coffin by his servants to 
the cemetery of Scutari, on the Asiatic coast. This con- 
trivance saved him from the sword of the laws, but not from 
the sword of the assassins : his servants themselves despatched 
him in the mountains of Magnesia, in order to possess the 
treasures he was carrying off with him in his flight. 

The mufti and the caïmakam took refuge together in the 
mosque of the merchants, a sacred asylum, braving their sen- 
tence of death under the protection of the imans. One of 
the viziers was beheaded, in spite of his rank, by the order 
and under the eyes of the grand vizier. Hassan the Clock- 
maker was exiled to Trebizond ; Cicala, the capitan-pasha, 
whose head the grand vizier had in vain solicited, owed his 
safety but to his title of son-in-law of the Sultana Validé. 
But he did not dare to reappear in the divan to exercise the 
functions of his minbtry of the marine. 

The inflexible Hassan, incapable of bending his policy to 
court managements, lost the favor of his master by the very 
severity with which he served him. The aga of the Janis- 
saries, Ferhad, the mufti, the defterdar, concerted to disaffeot 
towards him the Sultana Safiye. They represented him as a 
ferocious dictator, who was corrupting the fidelity of the 
Janissaries by excessive largesses, to ^e end of securing, in 
case of need, their support against the Sultan himself 

Hassan read these umbrages on the brow of his master. 
It was the time when the Sultana Validé was getting con- 
structed outside the walls, in the plain of Daoud-Pasha, an 
immense and fortified palace wherein to find an asylum in 
the midst of a camp against new agitations in the capital. 
One day as the Sultan vbited with the grand vizier this 
palace, Hassan asked him a private audience upon an urgent 
business. The Sultan, ordinarily gracious and complacent 


towards the yiiier, deferred it coldly to the ensuing diytn. 
Hassan foresaw his fall and did not seek to prevent it. 

After the first divan that followed this refosal of andi- 
enee, and on his return to his palace, he-*was writing the Sul- 
tana Validé upon a matter of business, when the grand 
chamberlain came to ask him for the seal of the empire. 
He gave it without a murmur, and withdrew instantly into 
his gardens of Sudlidji on the Bosphorus belonging to the 
Sultana Esma his wife. 

At the report of the dismissal of their favorite grand 
vizier, the Janissaries revolted against their aga, Ferhad- 
Pasha, and against the mufti, ascertained enemies of Hassan 
the Fruiterer; they thronged beneath their windows and 
threatened to bum them in their houses, if Hassan, victim 
of their hatred, was not re-established in his place of grand 
vizier. The mufti and the aga hid themselves in the palace 
of the ca!makam, Djerrah-Pasha, their friend, who exercised, 
in the absence of the grand vizier, the supreme authority of 
the government. 

The Sultan braves these rumors, satisfies the Janissaries 
by giving them a new aga taken from their ranks, Turk- Aga; 
Kazim, a man attached to the mufti, is appointed caïmakam 
provbionally till the advent of another grand vizier. These 
two soldiers, dear to the troops, appease their fermentation. 
A Bosnian of the Christian family of Malcovich, named in- 
Turkey Ali, and surnamed on account of his character Ali 
the Severe, then governor of Egypt, receives the title of 
grand vizier. 

While the capital is being restored to tranquillity by the 
skilful combination of the Sultana Validé, six mute eunuchs, 
sent by the Sultan to the garden of Sudlidji, forced the 
entrance of the harem of Hassan the Fruiterer, tore him 
from the arms of the Sultana his wife, sister of Mahomet 
III., dragged him into the sequestered garden of Khaiiedan 
in order that his groans might not be heard, smd strangled 
him in recompense for the throne and the life which he saved 
for his master. 


Ali the Severe, to whom a mute had carried to Cairo the 
seals of the empire, was coming already from Egypt across 
Vol. in.— 6* 

130 filSTOfiT OF T0BKST. 

Sjria and OaramanU, sowing ererjwhere upon his pftssago 
ezeontions and terror. 

At Damasoos, Uie revolted troops eare waj before his 
executioners ; at Adana decapitations and mutilations marked 
kis track ; at Koniah, the four yiziers, Piali, Khosrew, Ibrahim 
and AH, come in cortege to receire him, were chased from 
his presence and from the cit j as dilapidators ; at Akseh jr, 
the former chief of the Turcoman rebels, Ghourghour, who 
carried an enormous mattock of hard wood, and who was 
accustomed to plant it in the walls of cities inraded by his 
soldiers, in demanding as ransom ^e weight in gold of this 
club, came to make his submission to the new yizier; All 
let him approach the horse's side to kiss his stirrup, and at 
the moment when Ghourghour was risbg from his knees, he 
out off his head with a blow of his sabre. 

Another rebel, Hassan ihe Foolj an unpunished van- 
quisher of Sokolli, negotiated his submission with more 
prudence. Ali the Severe pardoned him and appointed him 
governor .of Bosnia, in order that he might redeem by his 
exploits against the Austrians his crimes against the Otto- 
mans. Hassan the Fody thus pardoned, traversed Constan- 
tinople with an army of ten thousand Asiatic bandits, whose 
aspect diffused terror on his passage. Some of them, half 
naked, carried on the neck and arms amulets and talismans 
-of idolatry ; others left afloat their hair as long as th^ of 
women ; they were armed with wooden lances, at the point 
of which ^ey agitated white rags in order to infuriate their 
horses ] strings of beads and camel bones emitting a lugubri- 
ous rattle were suspended from their stirrups of cords. Tho 
Khan of the Tartars, on seeing them arrive with Ali the 
Fool at Adrianople, refused to tight with these savages, of 
whom the contact would dishonor his soldiers. They passed 
along the Danube, and all periled with Ali the Fooif their 
chief, in the environs of Pesth, beneath the grapeshot of 
the Austrians. 


A domestic murder ensanguined a few days after the 
very seraglio. 

One of the sons of the Sultan, the prince Mahmoud, a 
young man of whom the military ardor and impatience for 
glory disquieted the Sultana, mother by a popularity danger- 


ous to her son, had the temerity to ask the Sultan and the 
viziers for the command of the army charged to re|»:ess the 
incessant rebellions of Asia. The predictions of a dervish, 
doubtless purchased by a palace intrigue, promised young 
Mahmoud victories and the. restoration of peace in Asia. A 
few generals and some viziers tampered in this ambition 
of a prince whose popularity was menacing his brothers. 
The mutes strangled by night the young aspirant, his mother, 
his prophet and his accomplices. Silence suppressed all mur- 
mur of this execution : the crime and the penalty crossed 
not the walls of the seraglio. 


Mahomet III. went, in the autumn of 1603, to inhabit for 
some months the gardens of Adrianople, in order to shake 
off his remorse for the death of Mahmoud and of the Sul- 
tana Aïsche, who had not been able to survive the assassina- 
tion of Hassan the Fruiterer^ strangled so unjustly under 
her eyes. Mahomet received also more promptly at Adria- 
nople the news from the army and the reports of his grand 
vizier, Ali the Severe, who was commanding upon the Dan- 
ube. The defeat and the death of the ten thousand Asiatics 
of Hassan the Fool, under the walls of Pesth, damped his 
spirits. This army was called in Turkey the ^' army of 

The Schah of Çersia, Abbas, provoked by the Ottoman 
beglerbegs of the frontier, had beat back the Turks as far as to 
Erzeroum and Kars ,' he was menacing Bagdad. The immi- 
nence of the danger forced the divan, met at Constantinople 
under the caïmakam Eazim, to recall from exile Hassan the 
Ghckmaker, then residing at Trebizond, and to give him the 
command of the army of Persia. The empire, uncovered on 
all sides by the absence of the court and of the grand vizier, 
sought to parry from itself the blows that were dealt it by 
so many enemies. 

The indolent Mahomet III., although in the prime of his 
years, was languishing at Adrianople amidst his eunuchs and 
women. One day as he passed on horseback in the streets 
of the city, a dervish, to whom Ottoman manners then per- 
mitted to say anything in the name of Allah, stopped the 
horse of the Sultan, and, seeing doubtless on Mahomet's 
countenance some symptoms of exhaustion, forewarned him 


•f a catastrophe before the lapse of many days. MahwMt, 
of wh<Hn the soul was more sicklv than the l>odj, was orer* 
whelmed bj the prophecy in which his superstition made 
him hear a decree of Hearen. He died, in fact, the fifty- 
fifth day after the prediction of the dervish. 

His reign, which had been but the reign of his mother, 
was the date of great internal seditions which were going to 
diake the throne and to dislocate the empire. Mahomet 
III. can bo accused but of the misfortone of his character. 
Nature had made him kind and just ; his weaknesses were 
those of his intellect ; his crimes were those of his favorites 
and of his mother. 

Three women of different characters, but of equal ambi- 
tion, Elizabeth in England, Catherine de Medici m France, 
the Venetian Sultana Safiyé at Constantinople, seemed to 
have been predestined towards the close of this century to 
govern at the same time three empires, and to astonish by 
turns the world : the first by the despotism of her will, the 
second by her bloody court-intrigues masked by religion, the 
third by the ascendant of her charms and of her ambition 
over a harem. Neither of them had ever* spared their 
enemies: Elizabeth beheaded her favorites and a queen, 
Catherine de Medici decimated a people while assassinating 
a party in a sect, Safiyé saw strangled nineteen brothers and 
one of her daughters by Mahomet III., to secure the th^ne 
against competitors. Europe and Asia were equally bloody ; 
but Elizabeth was sanguinary through policy, Catherine do 
Medici through faction, Safiyé through maternity. The one 
was a queen, the other an intriguer, the third a mother. The 
motives for their vindictiveness are differently explained, but 
the same horror covers them all. It is not given to either 
politics, or religion, or nature, to wash the hands of these 
three women who steeped the sceptre in blood. 


Two children shut up in the seraglio remained alone of 
the four sons whom Mahomet III. had had by different 
women : Ahmed or Achmet, aged fifteen years ; Mustapha, 
aged thirteen. 

Achmet was one of those characters without vices and 
without virtues, who leave no other traces in the life of 
nations but the dates of their advent and of their death. 


Mnstax^a was stultified bj congenital idiotism, which could 
make him but the sport of events. He owed his life to that 
idiotism, and to the reverence which the Ottomans feel for 
the destitute of intelligence, in whom they think themselves 
obliged to venerate the fatality and, so to say, divinity of 
misfortune.* The new Sultana Validé, that beautiful slave 
given to Mahomet by his mother, whether through humanity 
or through religion, did not allow the mutes to sacrifice a 
weak-minded child to the security of the throne. Achmet, 
who loved his brother, shielded him with his affection against 
the law and the practice of the murders of the seraglio. 

The young Sultan, directed by his mother and by his 
governor Lala-Mustapha, was the first to know the death of 
his father in the seraglio. He hastened, by the counsel of 
his mother, to write with a scrawling and tremulous hand a 
Katti-scherif to the caïmakam Kazim, depository of all 
• power in the absence of the grand vizier. He enveloped it, 
according to usage, with a silk handkerchief, and had it 
carried by the chief of the white eunuchs. Kazim was 
ignorant, like the whole city, of the death or illness of 
Mahomet. He endeavored in vain to decipher the illegi- 
ble characters of the Katti-scherif set before his eyes. " Who 
has given thee this writing?'' demanded he of the chief 
of the eunuchs. ^' It is not a Katti-scherif; it is not the Sul- 
tan's hand." — '^ That I do not know," responded the eunuch ; 
" but the writing has been given me for thee by the governor 
of the harem." Kazim, more and more astonished, called 
to his aid the secretary of state Hassanzadé, present in the 
room. " Caïmakam," said the paper, " by the order of God, 
my father died this night, and 1 am thy master ; maintain 
order in the city ; if the least commotion should take plaoe^ 
I will have thee decapitated." 

This news, this order, this menace made the caïmakam 
Jremble, at once to be caught in a snare or to disobey an 
order of the padischah. He hastened to write the kislar- 

* This is sheer poetry. The simple trath is that the Ottomans, like 
other primitive and strange peoples, were led to venerate idiotism as a 
gùigviarity in their own species, which, without heing noxioos or repol- 
•ive to them, fascinated hy its mffttery. The strangest bodily deformities 
can produce nothing of this kind, because the deviation in the visible 
oigan appears to settle the defect of faculty ; but in the case of a diyer* 
gence or a destitution of nUetttffence, while the body appears exterioily 
normal, the thing is utterly inconceivable and therefore direful to simple 
i^es. — TranskUor. 


aga, goTerner of the harem, a note to obtain light upon this 
dark matter. ^ There has been just presented to me, your 
nnworthy aenrant," said he in thb note to the kislar-aga, a 
Katti-8<merif of which I cannot oomprehend the meaniog. 
I know not if it be addressed as a real and serious order, or 
nmj^j to test mj fidelity ; relieve me from this perplexity.'' 

jFor sole answer to this note, the chief of the eunuchs 
eame to take the caXmakam, and conducted him to the 
seraglio. Kaiim found there the young padischah already 
seated upon the throne, surrounded by M the grand officers 
of the household of the palace. He Imelt before his master 
and took his orders for the funeral of Mahomet. 

The members of the divan, or the imperial council, were 
convoked without knowing the motive of their convocation, 
to an extraordinary session. They found in the seraglio a 
vacant throne elevated in the court of Felicity, at the foot 
of the steps that led up to the last door of the horenu « 
They surrounded, without daring to question each other, the 
throne, awaiting the appearance of Achmet. All of a sud^ 
den the folding doors of the harem were thrown open, and 
they saw come forth a prince of fifteen years coifed in a 
black turban, who saluted gracefully the council, and seated 
himself on the throne amid the cries of the chiaoux, extend- 
ing his hand to the lips of his viziers. The ceremonies of 
the first interment were accomplished. Those who attended 
craped their turbans with a black shawl; the c(^in of 
Mahomet was exposed upon a bier ; verses of the Koran 
were read around the coffin ; donations were distributed to 
the poor and to the orphans, and the young Sultan re- 
entered the harem to await the arrival of the grand visier 
before impressing a direction on the new reign. 


Ali the Severe, instructed at Belgrade of the death of 
his master, arrived at Constantinople on the eighth day. 
Achmet I. confirmed him in his post and charged him to dis- 
tribute in gratuities to the troops the twelve thousand 
gold ducats of the tribute of Egypt which the grand vizier 
brought with him for the initial exigencies of the reign. 

The Venetian Sultana Safiyé was banished for the rest 
of her dayS) with an immense suite of servitors, of slaves 
and of women who composed her court, to the old seraglio, 


that magnifieent and dreary exile of £dlen courts and repu* 
dialed harems. The chief of the white eunuchs (the oapou-aga) 
and the chief of the black eunudis (the kislar-aga), or gover- 
nor of the harem, devoted to that princess, were removed. The 
intendant-generai of her household was strangled. The new 
Validé thus took vengeance for the yoke long home from the 

^' Set off at once to lead the army into Hungary," said 
the Sultan to his grand viiier immediately after his corona- 
tion. Ali the Severe comprehended in the absoluteness of 
this order the umbrages of the governor Lala-Mustapha, and 
of the harem, who were quite willing to use his arm, but not 
his influence. CicalarPasha was sent off the same day to the 
army of Persia to combat Schah- Abbas. 

This warrior prince had annihilated the Turkish army 
of Soherif-Pasha, and had constrained him to sign a capitu- 
' lation at Erivan. The day on which Scherif-Pasha pre- 
sented himself in the camp of the king of Persia to discuss 
the articles of the capitulation, he found the Schah seated 
in the comer of a common tent, upon a piece of carpet piled 
with arms, but surrounded with all the Elhans of his prov- 
inces. Abbas had made himself a soldier in order to become 
again a sovereign. He rebuked harshly the vanquished, and 
marched on Kars, the last refuge of the Tui^ 

Cicala-Pasha «retrieved in some days the honor of the 
arms of the Sultan; but, beset by the indiscipline of his 
troops, he was compelled to fidl back upon Erxeroum to pass 
4he winter there in inaction. 


Ali the Severe set off regretfully from the capital ; he 
stopped for fifteen days at Halkalu, the first halt outside 
Constantinople, under pretext of awaiting there the treasure 
of the army. ^^ If thou carest for thy head," wrote to him 
ihe Sultan, " thou wilt proceed on thy route to-morrow." 

Ali the Severe, who felt his reign at an end, died of dis- 
couragement on arriving at Belgmde. The seals of the 
empire were offered to Hafii-Pasha, a man of unfortunate 
celebrity for his defeat at Nieopolis. On his refusal, the 
grand-viiiership was given to an old general of the frontiers 
named Lala-Mohammed-Mustapha. The plan of the harem 
seemed to be to keep always at a distance from the capital 

186 HUTO&T or TUBUT. 

the grand rinen, and to gorern by the calmakam deroied to 
Lala-Maatapha and the Sultana Validé. 

The boirtandji-basohi was sent into Asia to bring bade 
the head of the former calmakam Kasim, aocused of extor* 
iionB in the goremment wherein he was kept in exile. 
Ejuim, apprised by his confidants, eluded the search of the 
bostandji, and arrived by another route at Constantinople. 
Achmet L accorded him, together with a feigned pardon, the 
permission of i^pearing before him. 

The diran was assembled ; Achmet, changing tone, de* 
manded with indignation of Kasim why he had disobeyed 
twice his Katti-scherifs. A fetwa delivered immediately by 
the mufti declared the unfortunate calmakam worthy of 
death. Achmet I., in whom indifference to blood was in 
advance of his years, made a vesture ; the bostandjis cut off 
in open divan the head of Kasim. His body, placed with 
derision by the executioners upon a packhorse, was paraded, 
through the streets of the capital 

" Take good care," said the young Sultan to the new caïma* 
kam Mustapha Sarikdji ; ^' if thou committest the same faults, 
the same sabre will cut off thy head as it has that which 
thou hast just seen fall." 

Some months after, the new caïmakam, undermined wi<^ 
the Sultan by an intrigue of the mufti and of the high treas- 
urer, having retarded a few days, for wani of funds in the 
treasury, the pay of the Janissaries, was called unexpectedly 
to the seraglio. Achmet awaited him surrounded with the 
enemies of his minister. At a signal of the Sultan, the 
executioners strangled him and threw his body in the basin 
of the fountain of the divan. 

Dead bodies were the playthings of this boy upon the 
throne. Owing to the execrable principles suggested to him 
by his mother and his corrupters, to kill was with him to reign. 

A grandson of Sinan was appointed caïmakam. 

Two sons were bom at the same time to the Sultan before 
the age of fifteen, Othman and Mahomet. 


The grand vizier negotiated still at Belgrade for peace with 
Germany. The plenipotentiaries demanded the restitution 
of the territories conquered reciprocally since the beginning 
of the last war, the delivery of the fortress of Kanisdia, the 


remmciations of the Saltans to the right of patronage 
which they assumed over Transylvania. An armistice pre- 
pared the conferences ; they opened at Pesth, then at Ofen ; 
broke off, resumed, adjourned, reopened to be again broken 
off, they ended, after long vicissitudes and some intervals of 
war, in the investiture of the kingdom of Hungary, and of 
Tranyslvania being given by the grand vizier to Bocskaï, 
protégé of the Turks. This new king gave them back in 
return the fortresses of Lippa and of Temesvar. The Otto- 
man governor of this fortress was expelled by the inhabitants 
in arms. He fled for refuge to Belgrade, where the Sultan 
had him decapitated for his misfortunes. The grand vizier, 
recalled to Cfonstantinople and reprimanded by Achmet for 
kis tardiness, was threatened with removal or with death. 

While he was going, at the orders of his master, the 
Janissaries and the spahis revolted against their officers and 
stoned some of them to death. Achmet I. convoked them 
in the court of the seraglio. They were presented their pay 
and their cooking pots; they refused obstinately to touch 
either until they should have received justice. The Sultan, 
robed in a red pelisse in sign of anger, adjured them ener- 
getically to return to their duty. " You are offered your 
pay," said he to them indignantly ; '^ wherefore these mutinies 
i^inst your padischah ? Deliver up yourselves those who 
mislead you." 

" Padischah," replied, in the name of the soldiers, one of 
the oldest agas of the army, ^' it is not thy slaves fed upon 
thy bread in thy seraglio who commit these insolences, it is 
foreigners, who, after having formed the garrisons of Hunga- 
rian fortresses, have been incorporated contrary to usage in 
our ranks." 

" Name them then," «ried the Sultan. The aga handed 
him a list of the newly enrolled of whom the murmurings 
had agitated the soldiers. Surrendered immediately by their 
aeoomplioes, these agitators were decapitated on the spot. 

'^ Mark well," said Achmet then to the Janissaries, ^^ if 
there be any amongst you who foment new seditions, I will 
have them executed like these culprits; take away your 
dead, and appear not again but in a temper of obedience in 
my presence." 

Such vigor in a Saltan of sixteen years confounded the 
rebels and re-established autiiority completely. The srand 
visder, who arrived the same day, desired in vain some delay 


to follow up the negotiations, tken prospering, with Aoslria. 
'* Depart, without reply, and at the instant, for Asia," said 
Achmet. The minister, although unwell, was obliged to 
plant for the night his tents at Soutari. His illness was 
a^ravated by his terror. He was aocused to the Sultan of 
feigning indisposition in order to dispense himself ffom, 

^' Do not make thyself any longer sick," wrote to him 
with his own hand the Sultan, ^'but mardL" The sole 
reply of the grand yisier was to die the following day. 
Dervish-Pasha, his riral in ambition, was accused of haying 
had him poisoned by a Portuguese physician. The charge 
was without grounds ; he died of humiliation and of terror. 

Deryish-Pasha succeeded him. His immense wealth was 
taken away from his children and poured into the treasury 
to pay the cost of the campaign of Persia. Djafar-Pasha, a 
European ren^ade, who had goyemed Cyprus, was made 
capitan-pasha. Deryish sought to apply to the goyernment, 
relaxed under two reigns, the system of inflexibility, of 
promptitude and of ferocity, of his young master. ^' Do not 
judge me from my predecessors," said he to the members of 
the diyan, at the opening session of the council ; '^ I will 
haye the head cut off of the first amongst you who will put 
off business to the following day." 

The seraskier of the army of Persia, Oicala, had died 
after the reverses of Eneroum. The grand yiiier appointed 
Ferhad t?ie Foot, a sort of fiiyorite of the troops, to conduiot 
the war. This Ottoman Souwarrow, on his arrival at Scu- 
tari, was assailed by ten thousand Janissaries and twenty 
thousand spahis already assembled to inarch under his orders 
to the frontier of Persia ; they demanded with fierce cries 
their pay fallen in arrears, and cut «the cords of hb tent to 
enshroud him beneatii the canvas, a soldier-like way of do- 
posing viziers and generab by the seditious. 

Ferhad stepped out from his tent before it was {ros- 
trated, mingled with the revolters, picked up stones, with 
which he filled his pockets, and pelted like them his own tent 
^' And I too, I am a spahi, and I have not received my pay ; 
ought you to be paid when I am not ? " He then fell to 
cutting himself the cords of his tent, and thus appeased 
the murmurs by the laughter of the soldiers. His campaign 
was disorderly like his mind. 



The grand vizier Dervish-Pasha was accused justly of 
those reversefiï> He confined himself to punishing and did .not 
govern; the fear which he inspired recoiled upon himself, 
lie gave orders to a Greek architect for the construction of 
a magnificent palace in the district of tine seraglio. The 
palace finished, he asked the architect for the account of his 
expenses. The Greek brought him his memorandum. Der- 
via, after having looked it over with some frownings of the 
eyebrows, appeared to be discontented with the amount. 

" This is a. large sum of money which you ask of me," 
said he. The architect, intimidated, took back his bills, and 
tore them. " The slave and his goods are the property of 
his master," said he humbly to the grand vizier ; " it would 
have never entered my head to present you those accounts 
and to ask for an asper if you had not yourself called for 

The avarice of the grand vizier rejoiced at having thus 
paid for a palace by a frown of the eyebrows and by an equiv- 
ocal observation ; but the Greek swore in his heart to pay 
himself by the blood of the miser. The outworks not being 
yet completed, he constructed, as if by order of the grand 
vizier, a subterraneous passage which conducted from the 
palace of Dervish-Pasha to the gardens of the seraglio. 
When ike tunnel was nearly touching on the wall of the 
gardens of the Sultan, he had information given by a sham 
informer to the chief of the white eunuchs, governor of the 
seraglio, of this mysterious gallery, which could have no 
other object than to cover some enterprise against the 
safety of the majesty of the padischah. 

Achmet I., indignant, communicated the report of the 
chief of the eunuchs to his preceptor and to the muftL 
They exasperated his suspicions and rendered the necessary 
fetwa to justify the execution of the culprit. The plain 
existence of the secret passage was a sufficient witness of 
the crime. Dervish-Padka, on entering the following day 
the divan, was seized by the bostandjis, of whom he had 
formerly been aga, and strangled without being interrogated, 
on a gesture of the Sultan. His body, extended on the 
carpet, having retained in the agony some convulsive move- 
ments, Achmet drew his sword from the sheath, and out off 
with his own hand the head of his grand vizier. *^ His 


hideous head," says the historian Naïma, translated by Ham- 
mer, " rolled like the head of Alghol (the Medusa of the 
Arabs and of the Turks) at the feet of the starry hearen of 
the soverei^ majesty.'' The Greek had avenged himself 
for his fear by treachery. 

Daring these palace dramas at Constantinople, Mourad* 
Pasha, the negotiator of Derrish-Pasha at Pesth, came to 
sign at length with Austria the peace of Sitvatorok. This 
treaty confirmed, at the cost of slight restitutions of 
invaded territories and fortresses, Turkey in its preponder- 
ance upon the Danube and over th& larger moiety of Hun- 
gary. It was preceded and facilitated by a special treaty 
of bocskaï, king of Hungary and feudatory of the Turks, 
with the emperor. 

The treaty of peace of Sitvatorok contained in seventeen 
articles the conversion of the tribute paid by the empire to 
the Turks into an annual present of thirty thousand gold 
ducats ; an indemnity, paid at once, of two hundred wou- 
sand piasters to the Porte ; the reciprocal despatch of am- 
bassadors to Constantinople and to Vienna triennially with 
presents of an arbitrary and unlimited value ; equality of 
ceremonial and of respects between the Sultans and the 
Emperors of Germany ; renunciation of all mutual aggres- 
sion upon the frontier ; the confirmation of the treaty con- 
cluded between Bocskaï, king of Hungary, prince of Tran- 
sylvania, and Austria ; the optional extension of this peace 
to the king of Spain if he should desire to adhere to it 
The sole substantial check to the Ottomans contained in the 
treaty of Sitvatorok was the renunciation of future inva- 
sions upon Hungary or Germany. 

The conquerors consented for the first time to set them- 
selves a limit to their conquests. They could no more 
advance, but they might retrograde towards the Danube. 
There commenced for the Ottoman empire a moral retreat 
within its limits, at last defined; it doubted of itself, and it 
taught to its enemies to hope better and to dare more against 
it The treaty of Carlowitz, a century later, marked out the 
space from which it had receded. 

This treaty nevertheless was honorable to Ottoman diplo- 
macy, and covered with a just consideration its principal 
agent, Mourad-Pasha, surnamed the Digger of weUsy whom 
the Sultan had just elevated to the perilous post of grand 



The peace of Sitvatorok permitted the new grand vizier to 
direct the whole of the forces of the empire to the suppres- 
sion of the disturbances which were perpetuated in Asia, 
since the rebellion of Karayazidji (the black writer), and on 
the frontier of Persia more and more menaced by Schah- Abbas. 

Mourad the Well-digger^ immediately after having organ- 
ized the government at Constantinople, set out with the élite 
of the army for Aleppo. 

Aleppo was the heart of the revolt which was agitating 
Caramania and Arabia. The sons of Karayazidji, at the 
head of the remnant of the bands of their father, were 
ravaging all Asia Minor, from Adana and Koniah to 
Broussa. Djanboulad, a chief of the Kurds, an indepen- 
dent and warlike people between Turkey and Persia, invaded 
Mesopotamia. A Druzian emir of Lebanon, the celebrated 
Fakhr-el-din, named Facardin by the Europeans, constituted 
himself, by dint of heroism, of policy and of genius, a veri- 
table empire in Syria. The family of Djanboulad (in Arabic, 
soul of steel) had been, not long since, invested by the 
seraskier Cicala with the government of Aleppo? Cicala, 
vanquished and returned to Aleppo, had poniarded with his 
own hand the first Djanboulad to avenge the treacheries of 
which he accused him during the campaign. Ali, brother 
of the assassinated Kurd, had, to avenge in turn this iniqui- 
tous murder, pillaged Aleppo, besieged Tripoli of Syria, en- 
rolled thirty thousand Kurds or Syrian adventurers of all 
countries, and occupied with this nomad army the great 
capital of Mesopotamia, Damascus. Eight thousand horse- 
men of the desert, divided into six squadrons and called the 
body guards of the standard, formed the movable nucleus 
of the army of the Kurd. 


The grand risier, on his way towards Aleppo, had nego- 
tiated with the subaltern chiefs, subdued the others, killed 
several of them by treachery, and filled up the wells with 
their bodies. This wholesale sepulture given by Mourad to 
the rebels confirmed the surname of Digger <yf Wells which 
the soldiers had given him formerly, on their being routed 
from Persia, for bAvinff fallen with his horse into a well dug 
beneath the walls of Tauris. 

Koniah, sirayed by Ahmed-Beg-Serradjazadé (the son of 
the saddler), an unsubdued chief, had opened to him its gates. 
The inhabitants of Koniah, satisfied with the government of 
this tribe chief, who maintained peace there after having 
subjugated it, ocHijured the grand viner to confirm Ahmed- 
B^ in his government, while he should go himself to pacify 
Syria. Mourad-Pasha affected to incline to this policy ; he 
had Ahmed-Beg invited by a safe conduct to the divan with 
the principal iimabitants of the city. 

'^ I wish," said he, ^' to confide to thee the guard of Koniah 
while I shall march myself against Ali-Djanboulad ; but if I 
am in need of reinforcements how many men canst thou fur- 
nish me ? " " Thirty thousand without diffLculty," responded 
Ahmed-Beg. The grand vizier dismissed him upon this 
promise, loading him wi^ felicitations and with honors. 

But when the chief of the rebels had left the divan, the 
viiier, turning towards his counsellors and towards the in- 
habitants of the city who interceded for Ahmed : ^^ If I leave 
behind me," asked he of them, " a man who can raise by a 
gesture thirty thousand soldiers of his own, and that this 
man should lâîber my passage fortify himself in Koniah, what 
would be the result to my own soldiers ? " Silence testified 
to the grand vizier that the question was unanswerable. 
" Dig one well more," said he to the chiaoux, " and bury this 
too powerful man in the soil which he has usurped." 

At the city of Angora, between Koniah and Aleppo, 
Mourad-Pasha likewise exterminated Kalender-Oghli, the 
lieutenant of another rebel, with thirty thousand of his 
followers, by getting them all massacred at night by the 
hosts with whom he had assigned them their lodging. 

Djanboulad awaited Mourad with forty thousand veteran 
Kurds at the Iron Gates between Syria and Caramania. 
The mnd vizier turned this position by another route, and 
^ve him battle in the plain of Syria called the Plain of 
Pigeons. The Janissaries, proud of their superiority and of 


their arms, annihilated in a single charge this swarm of 
Kurds, called by them with contempt, *^ grasshoppers of the 
desert." The battle was prolonged but by the pitiless mas- 
sacre of the prisoners ; thousands of heads arose in pyramids 
beneath the hands of the executioners. The Arab horse of 
Djanboulad brought him without halting to Aleppo. The 
inhabitants, informed of his ruin, droye him out next day by 
pelting him with mud, and massacred in the streets and the 
gardens ten thousand of his Kurds who sought to fly in the 
footsteps of their chief. 

Damascus did not await, to purge itself of the Kurds, 
the approach of the army of the grand vizier. The spahis 
took up there their winter quarters ; numerous troops tra- 
yensed the desert to reinforce, against Sehah- Abbas, the gar- 
rise»! of Bagdad, under the order of Cicala, the Genoese son 
of the renegade who had taken the name of Mohammed- 
Pasha. Cicala, by his mere appearance at the gates of 
Bagdad, put to flight the revolted troops who had taken 
possession of it. The overloaded barge in which their chief 
was crosdng the Tigris to take refuge in Persia, was ingulfed 
in the river. 


While the grand vizier was thus exterminating every 
where before him the remains of the rebellion, Djanboulad, 
escaped upon a boat firom the port of Latakié, went under 
different disguises to confide himself to the generosity of the 
Sultan himself at Constantinople. 

Having asked for mercy and obtained pardon of Achmet 
L, the Kurdian chief amused for eight whole days the young 
padisohah with the recital of his exploits and his adventures. 
The Sultan, henceforth sure of him, accorded him the govern- 
ment of Temesvar in Hungary, to employ, against his enemies 
of Europe, an arm which had so long shaken his empire in 
Asia. A young brother of Djanboulad, who was afterwards a 
favorite of anomer Sultan, was incorporated among the pages 
of the seraglio. But scarcely had Djanboulad taken posses- 
sion of his government of Temesvar, than the grand vizier, 
without minding the imprudent favor of his sovereign, had 
him strangled by his own soldi^s, ashamed to obey a Kurd 



The grand TÎzier retraced his steps to fight in the nôA» 
borhood of Broussa two other rebel chiefs, Kalender-O^li 
and Karayazidji, son of the former mover of these long 
revolts of Asia. Ealender-Oghli, who had braved the Saltan 
as far as the plains of Nicomedia, would not Uiten to utj 
overtures of settlement. 

" ïhe murder of Djanboulad," said he bn the eve of the 
battle to his chiefs assembled in council of war, '^ enlightens 
us sufficiently on the sincerity of the Ottomans. Their 
pride has been often humbled for fifteen years back by our 
eabres. They reign in name over their provinces of Asia, 
we reign over them in fact. Aiden, Konhh, Angoni, Samu- 
khan, the mountains and the coasts of Crtr^mauin are our 
fortresses. The booty of their cities is our heritage. 
Hitherto we could have temporized or bave trumftted with 
them ; open and desperate war is now our m\e p»iiey. We 
will vanquish, we will beat back into tlie sea of Marmora this 
decrepit vizier, who better knows how to ;i3s*sainai@ than 
to combat. But if fortune should again he favaratiiu to thii 
valiant trickster, be it so I it will besufFioient fur u.s ihyt tlie 
recital of pur great actions shall pass from mouik to iBOvtii 
to posterity, and that our names shall be immortal like o«r 

The battle, given in the defile of Geksous, responded to 
the ferocious energy of the harangue. The Egyptians and 
the spahis of the grand vizier gave way a moment before the 
charge of twenty thousand cavaliers of Kalender-Oghlî. 
Victory inclined to the rebels. The aged Moiirad-Pasha, 
despite the weight of his years, pushed his horse into the 
thick of the conflict, drew from its scabbard an Indian sabre, 
formidably curved and blessed, which the Arabs of Yemen 
had given him forty years before, while he was governing 
their tents, made three cabalistic signs in the air with the 
blade, and rushed with a cloud of Janissaries on tlm esrdry 
of the enemy. 

Arrested at the head by this charge, and surrounded on 
the flanks by the infantry which Mourad had concealed 
behind some rocks, the rebels gave way in their tuj-n, and, 
cut off at all the gorges by corps judiciously dispoped, left 
fifteen thousand dead in the defiles of Geksoun. l^e reel 
contrived with Kalender-Oghli to slip by the mountains of 


kilo Persia, where Schah- Abbas enrolled them in his 
Lj on ootjition of abjuring the sect of Omer. 


B«l ike M rebellion rejoined its fragments behind the 
tfH^âlUfê of tkc vizier. Another chief of the Kurds named 
MalmovQ, l^rc^her of Khalil the Long, expelled from Bagdad 
by Cicala, arrived at Tokat with ten thousand combatants 
to join the standard of Kalender-Oghli, of whom he knew 
not the defeat. 

Mourad-Pasha, forgetting anew his ninety jrears, and 
finding not the strength but the daring of youth in his will 
to conquer, left his infantry at Geksoun, and returned with 
Aii^nd select cavalry upon Tokat, to annihilate 
w l^ni of insurrection between Persia and Cara- 
Bwowed by a tent of summer linen and a carpet 
for prayer, lis whole baggage, he outstripped the fastest of 
liis eavalry toth in the march and in the charge. Over- 
wkolloed at once by age, by indisposition and by weariness, 
Iwt iOftaiiied by his spirit, he was seen at the mid-day halts 
to kftve himself dismounted from horseback, like, say the 
recitals of âiiô campaign, a living corpse, to remain some 
^ Bonutes immovable, redining on the wayside as if life had 
been entirely extinct, then to call to him his servants, and 
Biako them set him anew on his horse, which he managed with 
ike Tiger oi a young man. 

He at iMt reached Maïmoun, near Siwas in the defiles of 
Bftibovre, aad after a desperate struggle exterminated him 
from Caramknia. Ten thousand heads arose in pyramids on 
the site of the battle, where they still whiten the bed of a 

The pasha of Diarbekir, Nassouh, ordered on by Mourad 
Ions before^ joined him at Baibourd. This pasha, who was 
t^làe same time one of the viziers of the Porte, led a nu- 
merous army, magnificently equipped, but rather tardy, to 
the grand vizier. The latter sat before his summer tent, 
upon a threadbare old carpet, to see defile before him the 
army of Nasaouh, followed by his horses, by his arms and 
his parade. 

At the sighl of the grand vizier, Nassouh dismounted 
respeot&Uy, hid% and kissed, according to custom, the foot 
of the old man. Mourad, alt}iough growlmg internally with 
Vol. III.— 7 


anger, kissed the general on the eyes, arose, took him by the 
hand, and led him with an ostentation of îslyot into his tent. 
He was unwDling by public reproaches to weaken in the 
army respect for those who exercise command. But when 
the tent concealed the two viziers from the eyes and ears of 
the soldiers : 

" Why," said Mourad to Nassouh, " dost thou arrive so 
late ? Thy army has, thanks to my care, long since been 
ready for the field; thou knowest that I had no other 
soldiers than those I conduct daily to battle against enemies 
springing up from Tokat to Aleppo, from Aleppo to Broussa. 
The distance from Diarbekir into Syria was not great : is it 
through contempt of my white beard that thou art not come 
to join me ? But thy contempt would fall on the padischah 
rather than upon me. If I had been vanquished, is it thou 
who could have resisted alone Kalender-Oghli, Yazidji, 
Maïmoun, Khalil the Lang ? If I were to demand a fetwa 
of the mufti to decide the pxmishment deserved by the chief 
of a Mussulman army stronger in number, and who leaves a 
weaker to be crushea, what would the fetwa say ? ... ." 

Nassouh, confounded, drooped the head, comprehending 
that the fetwa would pronounce death. 

" My son," resumed the old man, '^ the hand of the 
padischah is long ; if he were to send thee one of the six 
horse tails which thou hast just now planted before my tent, 
in ordering thee to give up the three tails that follow thee, 
and to descend to the grade of simple bes, or even if he 
ordered thy execution as traitor, what woul£t thou have to 
say in thy vindication ? " 

The silence of Ni^souh-Pasha appeared to mollify the 
grand vizier \ he confined himself to having made liîm tremble 
for his head, and feigned to pardon him. Nassouh left the 
tent arrayed in a cs^tan of honor, and was reoonducted to 
his troops with an escort worthy of a vizier. " Pardon," said 
Mourad, on seeing him remount his horse, '^ is the alms of 

His return to Constantinople, across the pacified provinces, 
obtained him the name of grand justiciary^ of sword of the 
empire^ of restorer of the monarchy. His vengeances were 
as rapid and as unlooked-for as his victories. AU who had 


Ertioipated in the old rebellions could only appear trembling 
fore him. 

Emir-Schah^ beg of Begschyri, was strangled in the midst 
of a festival to which he had been invited to congratnlate him 
on his return to obedience. While the gaests were eating 
pilau — a dish of boiled rice seasoned with butter, which is 
served at all repasts with the Turks — a page threw a cord 
around the neck of Emir-Schah, and tugged it with both 
hands with so much vigor, that the grains of rice leaped from 
the lips and from the nostrils of the victim upon the table. 

Severity cost him tears, he used to say, but he considered 
it as one of the virtues which heaven enjoined upon viziers.* 
He used to recite every instant some verses of the Koran 
which sustained him in his qualms of weakness. Before 
combating, he came off his horse, extended his arms upon 
the ground, moistened the dust with his tears, kneaded it in 
his hands, and spread it as an ointment on his gray hair and 
on his white beard. 

" Do not humble me yet to-day. Lord," he would say 
aloud to God ; '^ do not abandon me, thy servant, in the com- 
bat against the Infidels ; take pity on my old age ; thou 
knowest my intentions sincere for the safety and the &ith 
of the empire." The blood which he spilled appeared to 
him a tribute of which heaven would reproach him for having 
spared a single drop. 

One day, as he was getting, according to his cu6tom,t a 
well dug wherein to pile the bodies of the executed rebels, 
he perceived a spahi passing on horseback with a young lad 
on the horse behind him. He called the spahi and ques- 
tioned the boy. " How," said he to him, " art thou come 
into the camp of the rebels ? " 

The child, with the simplicity of his age, replied that his 
fiither, having nothing to eat, had been forced by hunger to 
enroll himseS for hire amon^ the rebels. " What was the 
trade of thy father ? " demanded the vizier. " He played the 
lute," replied the young pi;isoner. "Ah I ah ! " rejoined Mourad 
with a cru^l smile, " he excited, then, the courage of the re- 
volters against the faithful ? " and he ordered the chiaoux to 
kill the son for the trade of the father. 

* He was right; nothing less would have kept the Turkish empire 

t A proof that this was the true origin, not that the author gives, of 
his app^tive. — Thmelator. 


The oliiaonx, toodied by his yean, his ooantenuice, hia 
innocence and his tears, refosed to execnte the order. '^ Why 
should we kill this poor child ? " said they. Some Janis- 
saries called for, refosed with the same repugnance : '^ Are 
we executioners ? " said they, " and will we be more bar- 
barous than the executioners themselyes, who refuse to stain 
their hands with the blood of this young boy ? " 

Mourad turned towards his pages, who all fled with horror, 
and left the yiner alone with the ohUd. '^ Yerr well I " said 
the implacable old man, whose ninety years of age had not 
deadened his fimaticism ; " I will myself be the executioner 
of the &ith." He seised the child in his tremulous hands, 
strangled him on the margin of the well, and threw him 
on the pile of bodies which filled it to the brink 

*' Cowardly Mussulmans,'' cried he to those around him 
seized with horror, '^ know that rebels like Kalender-Oghli 
and Kara-Saïd, are not come forth from the womb of ^eir 
mothers with a horse between their legs and a sabre in their 
hand ; they have all been children like this one, brought up 
like lum in crime, and trained to pillage and murder by their 
fathers ; this boy had imbibed with his mother's milk their 
principles, and though his education were recommeneed a 
thousand times, the natal perversity is such, that it could 
neyer be effaced in him ; it is thus," added he in pointing 
to the well where he had thrown his victim, '^ that we must 
extirpate the very roots of evil." 

Then he recited an Arabic saying of the inhabitants of 
Yemen, whence he had drawn his fanaticism, and which says : 
" That once ascended to a great height, and in leaping over 
abysses from rock to rock in pursuit of the antelope, the 
hunter cannot avoid slipping but by bleeding his own feet in 
order to render the rock less slippery beneath his steps." 


His return to Constantinople was triumphal : he entered 
it preceded by four hundred stands of colors taken from the 
rebels of Arabia, of Syria and of Asia Minor. Each of 
these colors bore inscribed on it the name of one of the 
£Ekctious chieû annihilated by his arms. Thirty thousand 
heads of their soldiers had been sent to Constantinople 
during the campaign ; thirty thousand others marked with 
pyramids of skulls the spots where Mourad-Pasha had de- 


featod their armies; one hundred thousand rebels were 
buried in the wells. 

The spoils brought off from these executions were de- 
posited by the old warrior at the feet of the Sultan. The 
defterdar, Baki-Pasha, treasurer of the empire, who had 
brought off but a million of ducats collected from the rebel 
popuLeitions of Syria, was thrown into the prison of the Seven 


Achmet I., more confident than ever in his vizier after 
having so happily tried him as warrior, employed him anew 
as negotiator m the difficulties which the death of Bocskaï, 
a tributary king of Hungary, had raised again between 
Austria and the Porte. 

According to the treaty of Sitvatorok, Transylvania was 
to become again an independent kingdom on the death of 
Bocskaï. Upon this event, attributed to a crime, the nobles 
of Transylvania, provoked secretly by Austria, chose for 
sovereign Bakoczy, a popular and bustling personage, who 
was aspiring to the throne. The Austrians hastened to re- 
cognize him ; the Porte claimed its privilege of investiture, 
and appointed on its side Homonaï, another Transylvanian 
noble, reigning prince of Transylvania. 

After a long negotiation interpretative of the treaty of 
Sitvatorok, Austria paid a present of two hundred thousand 
ducats to the Porte. Poland drew closer by a new treaty 
the ties ^of friendship and of dependence which attached it to 
the Ottoman empire. It engaged to cover Moldavia against 
the allied independent Cossacks of Eussia. The Porte, on 
its side, renewed the promise to protect Poland against the 
Tartars. The Poles contracted the obligation of paying 
tribute to the Turks. 

The grand vizier, despite his age, meditated vengeance 
against Sohah- Abbas who was humbling for many years back 
the Ottoman arms. He obtained from the Sultan the 
authority of taking the armies to the frontiers of Persia ; 
but before leaving, he wished to deliver Asia from an old 
anmestied chief of the faction of Asia named Yousouf-Pa^a. 

" Thou art a brave younc fellow," he wrote to him, " I 
know that thou governest wim justice thy old compaidons of 
war ; why, then, is thy name still cited among the doubtful 


aerrants of the empire ? If I were to send an army against 
thee thou wooldst end with repenting it Oar power has been 
ffiven by Gk>d, and no revolt can prevail against it I^anbou- 
utd, Kalender-Oghli, Kara-SaSd were more formidable than 
thon; where are th^ ? I tow to thee by heaven that thou 
hast nothing to fear mm the padischah ; we are entering on a 
campaign by his orders against the old red-head the Persian ; 
come to my camp of Scntari ; thon wilt kiss the hand of the 
Saltan ; thon wilt receive my instrnctions to secnre, daring 
ike war which I am ^ins to make, the fidelity and the peace 
of Asia. Gonsolt with uïj wise men ; thou mast know what 
is best to be done ; reflect well and answer me.*' 

Yonsoaf, after having consolted his friends, thought that 
obedience was more safe for him than hesitation ; he set off 
with an escort to the camp of the visier at Scutari. The 
Sultan, to attend at the assembling and the departure of the 
army, had brought thither his seraglio into his summer kiosk. 
He was i^iorant of the plan of old Mourad, and was aston- 
ished at his slowness in departing. Weary of these delays, 
he wrote a katti-scherif to Mouradto order the immediate de- 
parture of the troops. Mourad hastened to the palace and 
confided at last to Achmet the premeditated murder of 
Yousouf-Pasha. The Sultan approved the treachery of his 

Yousouf arrived at length in the camp. He pitched his 
tents not &r from those of the grand vizier. Mourad re- 
oeived him as an anxiously awaited guest ; he made him sit 
on the carpet in front of him, knees against knees, loaded 
him with presents, as also his escort, and conducted him to 
the palace of Scutari to kiss the hand of the Sultan. 

The object of this reception was to assure completely, 
respecting the good faith of the grand vizier, another sus- 
pected chief of the populations of Asia, friend of Yousouf, 
named Mouselli-Tschaousch, whom he wished to allure into 
the same snare. 

After having sojourned a month in the camp of Scutari, 
Yousouf, called into the tent of Mourad-Pasha, received the 
investiture of the opulent Sandjak of Magnesia. This 
unexplained favor appeared exorbitant to the divan. " See," 
said the viziers and the pashas to one another, " see this old 
man, with his feet already in the grave, ruins the treasury to 
^ve a former rebel the meed of we oldest fidelities." 

The Sultan himself, beset by the murmurs of the oour- 


tiers, ended by believing the failure of the mental faculties 
of his prime minister. "My lala (my father), he wrote him one 
day, thou art become old and canst no longer conduct a war, 
designate to me thyself in this answer whom thou wouldst 
like for seraskier, or depart thyself within three days," 

Mourad-Pasha, instead of answering, came himself to 
the palace, and conjured the Sultan to allow him time to 
work out his plan of exterminating, by a single blow, 
some dangerous chiefe of Asia before quitting the capital. 
An emissary of the grand vizier, Soulfikar, was gone in his 
name to meet Mousselli-Tschaousch. Dazzled by the pros- 
pects of favor, Mousselli-Tschaouscb attended him to Koniah. 
While he was intoxicated with honors and wine in the 
delightful gardens of Meram near this city, Soulfikar had 
him massacred at a festival, and sent, with an escort of ten 
couriers, his head to Scutari. 

" God be praised," cried Mourad on receiving this head 
and ordering that it be exposed the following day at noon 
before his tent to the eyes of the camp. He kept the secret 
until morning, and invited Yousouf to come to take breakfast 
with him in his tent. 

The repast served : " My beloved son," said the old man 
to his victim, " thou knowest my affection for thee ; thou 
knowest that I cannot take my coffee without thee ; let us 
go seat ourselves at the back of my tent to enjoy ourselves 
more freely, for to-morrow, if God please, thou wilt take 
leave of me for ever." 

While they were thus making towards the tree in the 
shade of which was spread the breakfast cloth, the chief of 
the eunuchs of the grand vizier approached, and bowing 
before his master : " The beg of Awlona," said he to him, 
is just arrived in the camp and requests to be admitted' to 
your presence, what am I to answer ? " Can I not, then," 
said the crafty old man, with an apparent impatience, "have 
a single hour of tranquillity ; I will go to receive the beg. 
An instant," added he addressing himself to his kyayas and 
his agas, " sit you here, until I return, and keep company 
with my son Yousouf." 

Yousouf sat down to breakfast with the agas and com- 
menced eating in awaiting his host. But the carver present- 
ing him with one hand a dish of sheep's feet, pulled with the 
other his turban over his eyes ; another seized him by the 
hands, while a third struck off his head with a sabre. His 


bleeding head, joined to that of Monaselli, was hoisted on a 
pike pClnted before the festive tent The body, left upon 
the grass, threw the companions of Yoosouf into consterna- 

The yizier however did not yet set out; he wished to 
leave behind him other impressions of terror in the eyes of 
the doubtful servants of the monarchy. The same repast 
was to serve for two murders ; the denerdar Etmekdjizadé, 
of whom the zeal appeared suspicious in Syria, was invited 
by him to the same honors and the same trap. 

In crossing the Bosphorus in a caïque to attend the 
vizier's invitation, Etmekdjizadé saw an unknown barge pass 
by so closely as to touch his own ; the hand of one of the 
rowers threw him an anonymous note which warned him of 
the danger. He made the rowers put about and returned to 
Constantinople. The note was from the Sultan himself who 
loved the defberdar, and who had not been able to obtain his 
head from the inflexibility of his grand vizier. 

" My padischah," wrote the alarmed deflerdar to the 
Sultan, " come to my aid 1 deliver me from the ambushes of 
Mourad. Give my place to another. I abandon to him my 
tents, my horses, and my equipages, rather than return to the 
camp, where I am awaited by death." 

Achmet I. tried in fact a second time to rescue the def- 
terdar from the hatred of his minister. He called Mourad 
to the palace of Scutari. ^^ Be seated, mv lala," said he to 
him kindly, " thou art old and I venerate thy years." " Thy 
slave will do no such thine," replied Mourad in prostrating 
himself, " he knows too well his duties." " I have a favor to ask 
thee," continued Achmet. " Is it then for the padischah to en- 
treat his slave ? " replied the old man. " Yes, I entreat thee," 
resumed the Sultan, '^ to grant me the life of the defterdar 
whom thou desirest to put to death ; to-morrow he will pre- 
sent himseK in thy tent, pardon him, and let him live." " It is 
the order of my padischah," said the vizier, " it is enough ; " 
and he prostrated himself anew. 

The defterdar was pardoned, but four pages of the 
seraglio, who had been charged with transmitting him the 
secret notice to which he owed his safety, were strangled in 
the palace. 

* One does not see the meaning of aU this management and thafe 
manoenyres, which seem moreover still less in character with Monrad 
than with the nsoal massacres. — TYanskUor. 


The campaign of Persia and the departure of the army, 
which had been but a feint of Mourad, were adjourned to 
another year. The grand vizier, without leaving Scutari 
and without fighting, had vanquished. The chief of the 
black eunuchs daring to murmur before the Sultan against 
the inertness of the old man who had, said he, wearied the 
army and wasted the year : " Hold thy tongue, wretch," 
replied Achmet to him ; " how darest thou blaspheme against 
the most able of viziers ? Mourad is old, but hels a valiant 
combatant for the faith, a minister consummate by genius 
and by years ; his head has served me as efficiently as his 
arm ; he has reconquered Asia from the comer of his tent 
His intellect is worth to me an army. Utter not a word more 
against him ; let him go or stay, all is welL" 


Ee-entering Constantinople, Mourad-Pasha resumed his 
habits of diplomat, and deadened the quarrels of the com- 
petitors of Transylvania. Full of deference towards the 
French ambassador M. do Salignao, he permitted five Jesuits 
protected by France to found schools at Constantinople, and 
to try for the seventh time the impossible reunion of the 
Greek and the Latin worships under the head of the Pope. 

The Venetians, through their ambassador, opposed as fiur 
as they could the progress in Turkey of a religious order 
which increased the influence of the Popes, their enemies in 
Italy. Religious agitation followed here, as every where, 
this able and always militant militia. The Jesuits were 
not slow, as we shall soon see under other reigns, to incur 
and to provoke these dissensions and persecutions. Repulsed 
by the Greeks, they addressed themselves to the Armenians, 
less sustained by the divan. After having vainly essayed to 
reattach them to the Roman Church, they accused them, as 
of a crime, with their fidelity to their faith. 

Mourad, little attentive to those subjects of discord 
between the enemies of Islamism, thought of nothing but of 
satisfying France and of favoring her protégés, to attach her 
to the empire. The schism of the Turks and of the Per- 
sians gave him more concern than these differences of Chris- 
tian ecclesiastics. 

He set out in spring for the frontier of Persia with the 
title of serdar. The troops of Roumelia, of Anatolia, of 
Vol. III.— 7* 

154 msTomT ov tttbxst. 

Gurunania, of Siwas, of Damasoiu, of Aleppo, of TschQder, 
of DiarbeUr, of Batoon, of Erseroum, of ELars, of Alba* 
nia, the Janissaries, the submitted Kurds, the spahis, the 
feudatory contingent, the topdjis or artillerymen, and all the 
paid and regimented corps of the empire composed this 
immense army. The renown of the courage and experience 
of the Tizier surrounded him with a prestige which seemed 
to attach victory to his life. His ninety-two years of 
studies, of diplomacy, of battles and of government had not 
outworn his mind. He saw without fear the approadi of 
death, provided that his life should contribute to the last 
mcmient to the consolidation of the power of the Sultan. 

One of his most virulent, but most capable, enemies, the 
vizier Nassouh, having come imprudently into his caiip, it 
was proposed him to take advantage of the occasion to get 
rid of him. '' No, no," said he, " that wretch hates me, but 
he wields equally well the pen, the tongue and the sabre ; his 
death would be a bad service to the Porte ; God preserve me 
from putting to death men capable of being grand viziers 
after me.*' 

Death did in fact surprise him a few days after, in his 
tent, on his march towards Erzeroum, and Nassouh-Pasha, 
wh<Hn he had spared, was appointed provisionallv by the 
generals to take his place as serdar at the head of the troops, 
ochah* Abbas, intimidated by this slow display of forces» 
hastened to negotiate with Nassouh to stop the overflow of 
the Turks upon his frontiers. The army, fnrloughed, re 
turned to Constantinople to await in its cantonments the 
issue of the negotiations. 


Nassouh-Pasha became from serdar grand vizier. He 
had married a daughter of Achmet I. still in the cradle, and 
who died before coming of age. The har^n, since Amurath 
III., had lost all influence over politics. Achmet had been 
made to believe by the long sway of the Sultana Safiyé, of 
the governess of the harem Djiuifeda, of the Jewess Kira 
and of the thousand odalisques of his &ther, that sorcery 
made part of the influende and the attraction of women. He 
dreaded to allow himself to be swayed by the charms whidi 
had so agitated the two last reigns. Impetuous, but sobw in 
his amours, he loveà but the mother of his two sons. This 


woman watched with a ferocious jealousy over the bed of 
the Sultan. 

Achmet having receiyed as a present from one of his sisters 
a young slave whose bei^uty appeared to dazzle too much his 
eyes, the Sultana consort secretly strangled her with her 
own hands. To conceal the crime froin Achmet, she dressed 
in the clothes of the murdered slave another odalisque and 
had her introduced in the dark to the apartment of Achmet. 
Achmet having discovered the imposition and the crime, 
deplored bitterly the death of the slave whom he had pre- 
ferred, and striking his guilty wife with the haft of his 
poniard on the face, he trampled her under foot on the 

A few days after this horrible domestic drama, Achmet, 
passing on horseback through the Hippodrome, received on 
the shoulder a blow of a stone launched by a fanatical der- 
vish. The head of the dervish rolled at the feet of the 
horse of the Sultan. 

An ambassadress of Georgia, a country where all politics 
were in the hands of women, astonished Constantinople by 
her beauty, her luxury and her eloquence. Ambassadors 
from Schi^- Abbas gave occasion to splendid fetes, in which 
Achmet wished to dazzle the Persians. He fought himself 
on horseback in the lists against thb grand vizier, and his 
djerid, launched by his hand with Sie vigor of youth, 
grazed the head of Nassouh. Some memorable hunts in the 
forests of Maoedon and Adrianople piled up before the 
Sultan's eyes twelve hundred deer and thousands of birds 
of prey. He returned to pass the summer in his palaces of 
the Bosphorus, in the midst of devotions and of festivals. 

Two years of complete tranquillity, secured by the 
energy of old Mourad, succeeded to the agitations of so 
much warfare. The new grand vizier Nassouh ceded to 
Schah- Abbas, in a treaty of definitive peace, all the disputed 
provinces wluch the Turks iiad usurped from the Persians 
idnoe the reign of Mahomet II. 


The contestations relative to Transylvania were renewed 
ceaselessly between the Turks and Austria. This province, 
since the death of Bocskaï was torn by the diver* preten- 
sions of the Bathorys, kings of Hungary, of the Rokoczys 


and of Gabriel Betblen, by tarns elected by the nobles of 
Transylvania, and seeking support some from the Turks, 
others from the Germans, these from the Wallachians, those 
from the Poles. The independent Hun^rians, in urging 
their rights anterior to the treaty of Sitvatorok to this 
province, augmented farther the confusion and the anarchy. 
The pa^as governing the frontiers of Turkish Hungary 
protected by turns the rival pretensions of all their ephe- 
meral princes of Transylvania. Gabriel Bethlen, sustamed 
a moment by the nobles of Hungary, had just signed secretly 
with Nassouh a treaty by which " the nobles and magnates 
of upper Hungary engaged, in the interest of Bethlen, to be 
the friends of the friends of the Turks and the enemies of 
their enemies.'' Those pretensions and those treaties, dis- 
cussed and interpreted without end between the negotiators 
of Vienna and those of the Porte, were agitating the public 
peace without entirely breaking it, on the side of the Danube. 
On the side of Asia, a debarkation of Cossacks came to 
surprise and sack the maritime town of Sinopé on the Black 
Sea. The grand vizier Nassouh sent tardily a squadron to 
retake Sinopé ; ashamed of his improvidence, he concealed 
the disaster from Achmet. The preceptor, the mufti, the 
chief of the eunuchs, a faction of the seraglio opposed to 
Nassouh, denounced this reverse and this negligence of the 
grand vizier to the Sultan. They represented to him with 
the eloquence of hatred the vile birth of this foreigner, come 
forth from the forests of Albania where his father was a 
Chrbtian wood-cutter, to be a hewer of wood (baltadji) in 
the kitchens of the seraglio, then tschaousch or headsman 
of an aga of the Janissaries, then groom, then chamberlain, 
then governor of a province, then enriched to opulence by his 
marriage with the only daughter of a chief of the Kurds of 
Messopotamia, sufficiently rich and sufficiently ambitious to 
have offered to pay forty thousand gold ducats for the place 
coveted by him of grand vizier ; a factionist in thp camp of 
the aged Mourad, spared by this old man who was to have 
put him to death, become his successor by the choice of the 
troops rather than the free selection of the Sultan, betrothed 
to the daughter of the padischah, reigning an absolute and 
insolent master over his benefactor,* alienating from him all 

* Here is a portrait, and it was a common one in " despotic '* Turkey, 
of the elevation of talent fipom humilil^ of circumstances, which is rarely 
reproduced, in even our democratic days, in the most perfect, or at leaAt 
pretentious of all republics, in this particular. — Dranalator, 


hearts by his exactions and his cruelties, peddling shameful 
peace treaties with the Persians and the Hungarians, permit- 
ting insults to the coasts of Caramania and of Morea, by the 
vessels of Florence, of Genoa and of Malta, letting Sinopé 
be devastated by a horde of Cossacks, and concealing these 
disasters from the Sultan to elude himself the just chastise- 
ment of his crimes. 

Such allegations, falling on the soul already ulcerated of 
Achmet I., were too conformable with his own resentments to 
let him hesitate at vengeaînce. The Sultan distrusted for a 
long time back his fidelity ; a recent and accidental circum- 
stance had disclosed to him a secret manœuvre of his grand 
vizier with the Tartars of the Crimea, to give them a prince 
of his own choice. One day as Achmet was falcon-hunting 
with Nassouh in the marshes of Adrianople, he saw an 
unknown falcon dart from a bower of alders upon his, and 
tear from it the prey which it was bringing to the Sultan. 

" Who is the insolent," cried he, " who dares with his 
bird to take off from me the product of my chase ?" On 
galloping to the alder bower, from which the falcon had 
pounced upon his, he fell into the midst of a group of Cir- 
cassian cavalry concealed by the trees and covered with 
resplendent arms. These cavaliers were the escort of a 
prince of the house of Gheraï, arrived unknown to him some 
days before at Adrianople, at the secret invitation of the 
grand vizier, who wished to elevate him to the rank of Khan 
of the Crimea. The princes of the Tartar family of the 
Gheraï are the sole legitimate successors by blood of the 

E rinces of the imperial house of the Ottomans, if ever this 
ouse should become extinct at Constantinople. 

This mystery and the insinuations of the enemies of 
Nassouh persuaded Achmet that his grand vizier was medi- 
tating perhaps a change of dynasty, to raise his protégés to 
the throne and to reign in their name. He did not for 
a while give vent to his suspicions ; but he threw the Tartar 
prince and his retinue into the prison of the Seven Towers. 


A few days after this event, the Sultan, coming out from 
the mosque where he had been to attend the prayer of 
Friday, was apostrophized by an emir (a descendant of the 
Prophet) who complained with tears of the unpunished 


abduction of his wife bj a funiliar aasooiate of Naafioidi : 
*^ My padisohah, padisohfOi of all the Ottomans/' cried the 
outraged emir, ''what means this tyranny by a scum of 
Albanians and Kords corrupted by your vizier, and who 
abuse the fikvor with which you cover them to humiliate and 
mar^rise your slaves ? " 

On the return of Achmet to Constantinople, Nassouh, 
who felt collecting against him a cloud of hatred, sought to 
deal his enemies a sudden blow by the hand of the Sultan ; 
he asked him for the heads of the mufti, of the chief of the 
Uack eunuchs, and of his lala or &vorite preceptor. Ach- 
met apprised them and refused their life to Nassouh. In- 
dignant at a refusal which presaged him a disgrace, he 
resolved, with the ferocity natural to his race, to prevent 
their triumph by their death, and to avoid the chastisement 
which he would incur, by flight. He ordered his kyaya 
Beïram, Albanian like himself, to assassinate the khodja, 
the chief of the eunuchs and the mufti, and posted fifty 
thousand Albanian cavahr of his guard at the gate of Con- 
stantinople to protect, aner these three murders, his flight 
into the mountains of Albania. 

Boïram, a friend as faithless as he was a ferocious accom- 
plice, revealed the plot to the chief of the black eunuchs 
and to tiie muftL They convinced Achmet of the infidelity 
of his minister. The Sultan dissembled until the ensuing 
divan. There Nassouh demanded more imperiously the 
heads of his three enemies. '' If you do not deliver them to 
me,'' said he, " I resign my functions, and will poison myself." 
The word poison revived in the memory of Achmet the rumors 
which had formerlv been current about the poisoning of old 
Mourad-Pasha in his camp by his ambitious rival " Ah ! 
traitor," cried Achmet, ''it is then thou, in reality, who 
hast poisoned Mourad ! 

He did not dare nevertheless to either strike or re- 
move him yet, either because he dreaded a sedition of the 
Albanian Janissaries in his fiivor, or that he hesitated to 
shed the blood of his son-in-law. The following day, which 
was a Friday, a day on which the Sultans come out in state to 
attend prayers at the mosque, Achmet sent orders to his 
vizier to accompany him to mosque, as usual; Nassouh 
refused, alleging an indisposition. This refusal appeared an 
outrage to the majesty of the padischah, a prelude of unpar- 
donable revolt. Two hundred bostandjis, commanded by 

mSTORT 0» TUEKKT. 159 

tiieir generals, incorraptible gaardians of the seraglio, went 
up in arms to the palace of the grand yiader, forced open the 
doors and strangled afber having disarmed him. 


Thus died this Albanian, whose good fortune, natural 
genius, ferocious courage, savage eloquence, insatiable ambi- 
tion, adventurous intrigue and desperate resolution would 
have made him a great man, if the impetuosity of his passions 
and the arrogant levity of his character had not made him 
an adventurer baleful to his master, to the empire and to 
himself. His incalculable treasures, composed of bushels of 
pearls, of tons of ducats, of eighteen hundred gold-hilted 
sabres, a single one of which cost fifty thousand ducats, of 
twelve hundred horses of hunting and of war, of heaps of 
stuffs of gold and carpets of Persia, of twenty thousand 
camels, of six thousand oxen, of four hundred Arabian 
mares, of five hundred thousand sheep browsing the pastures 
of Europe and of Asia, restored to the treasury of the 
Sultan all that it had lavished on this unworthy favorite. 

Mohammed-Pasha, another son-in-law of the Sultan, re- 
ceived the seals of the empire. The mufti Seadeddin did not 
long enjoy his triumph over Nassouh ; the pestilence took 
him off a few days after the death of his enemy. He was a 
historian of the Ottcnnans, as had been his father. His 
brother Mohammed-Seadeddin succeeded him in the dignity 
of mufti and in his virtues. Arrived at Constantinople the 
day of the fanerai, it was he who in quality of muffci offered 
prayer over the coffin of his brother. 


The grand visier Mohammed signaliied his adminis- 
tration only by rashly rupturing the peace with Schah- 
Abbas, and by a campaign without glory terminated by ja 
second peace without dignity. Acmnet I. appointed, to 
retrieve the honor of his arms, the capitan-pasha Khalil, 
grand vizier. 

An army of Cossacks had invaded Moldavia, beaten the 
governor of Silistria, Mustapha ths Drunkard^ and driven 
from his dominions the prince of Moldavia installed by the 
Porte, Stephen Tomsa. I^ender-Pasha, sent by ihe grand 


vizier into Moldaris, drove back the Cossacks and reinstalled 
Tomza and his family. Five hundred Cossack prisoners, 
the mother, the wife and the daughter of the Moldavian 
prince, crowned daring the invasion of the Cossacks, were 
sent loaded with irons to Constantinople. On the route, 
the widow of the rebel prince of Moldavia, whom the Mol- 
davians styled the Domina^ lost the youngest and most 
beautiful of her daughters, betrothed to a Moldavian noble- 
man, a prisoner like herself. The Turks and her family 
offered vainly for^ thousand ducats as reward to whoever 
should find her. Taken off by a Tartar-Khan of the Crimea 
captivated by her charms, she reappeared but a year after 
with two twin children whom she was nursing, the fruit of 
the abduction from which she had escaped too late. Satiri- 
cal popular ballads on this disappearance and this return 
amused the Turks and amuse them still with the adventures 
of the brides of Moldavia. 

Kussian ambassadors, sent to Constantinople to prevent 
the irruption of the Turks pursuing the Cossacks into their 
frontiers, arrived laden with coarse presents, like their indus- 
tries at that period. These presents consisted in furs, in 
birds of prey trained for hunting, and in sixty large teeth 
of fishes. 

A treaty with Poland, signed at Boussa the 27th of Sep- 
tember, 1617, prevented an approaching conflict between the 
Turks and the Poles on the Dniester. The Poles obliged 
themselves to hinder thenceforth the Cossacks from crossing 
the line of Ocsakow, and renounced all intervention in the 
quarrels of Wallachia, of Moldavia, of Transylvania. 

Some religious convicts, raised by the manœuvres of the 
Jesuits protected by France, disturbed the peace between 
the Catholic powers and the Porte. The Jesuits wero 
thrown into the prisons of the Seven Towers for having 
bribed the vicar of the Greek patriarch at Constantinople in 
their favor. This vicar was handed as their accomplice. 
The ambassador of France paid thirty thousand ducats for 
the ransom of his imprisoned coreligionists. 

Cardinal Clesel, son of a baker, like the vizier of 
Turkey, determined the emperor of Austria to send to Con- 
stantinople a solemn embassy to resolve the difficulties of 

The Sultan Achmet I. died without having seen the end 
of these negotiations. He was only twenty-eight years of age. 


His reign, cominenoed at fourteen years, bad occupied a 
large space in time, a small one in history. Some fits of 
energy or rather cruelty in the commencement of his career 
had ended in the weakness that yields by turns to all coun- 
sels. He loYcd the good, and he wished the just ; it is the 
praise which is accorded him unanimously by the historians 
and the ambassadors of his epoch ; but he was neither great 
nor generous. The throne was too high for his soul. 

He left seven sons, Othman, Mourad, Ibrahim, Moham- 
med, Kasim, Bayezid, Soliman, destined some for the throne, 
the others for the tomb. But of him history must acknowl- 
edge that he had, the first of the Sultans, spared the life of 
his brother Mustapha in mounting the throne. Such an act 
in such a time merited him the benedictions of the Ottomans. 
At his death, his memory was lamented, it was not accused-, 
the l^urks do not ask more of their sovereigns than has been 
given them by nature. 


The traditions of the family of €knghis-Khan, which 
regulate the rights to the throne with the Ottomans, would 
give the crown to the brother of the deceased padischah 
rather than to his sons. Age prevailed over blood in these 
Tartar traditions. It was this default of right to the throne 
in the direct line that had occasioned so fatally in the impe- 
rial family the murder of the brothers of the Sultan; to 
spare his brothers was to disinherit his sons. This consider- 
ation enhances Achmet I. and the Sultans his successors who 
have followed his example; but this time the example 
became disastrous to the empire. 

Mustapha was but the shadow of a prince. Nature had 
stricken him with an eternal stupor from his birth. If 

* This constitutional extenuation should have been stated by the 
author in his philanthropic declamationâ against the law of Mahomet 
n., eyen at the risk of somewhat damaging the sentiment and eloquence. 
He ^ould, moreover, have been aware that, in political philosophy, the 
change denounced marks a transition from barbarism towards civilization. 
The collateral descent is that befitting an age of warfare, when the great 
requisite is that the government be kept continually in full-grown hands ; 
but when society has, like the family, ûxed and rooted itself in the soil, the 
political inheritance, being of a peaceM and persistent nature, can with 
impunity await the lapse of acddental minorities. The goyemment at 
this penod is passing to principlea&ompenoni! it is beooming ùuMutional 
from having been but mereij Junctional, — Dranslator. 


tbe Ottoman laws bad stiimlated that to become Saltan, cme 
sbould be a man, Mostapba, respectfully discarded from the 
throne, would have ceded the Empire to his nephews. But 
the law was fatal as nature. There was then no hesitation 
in proclaiming Mustapha I. 

The Ottomans on seeing him issue from the gloom of 
the seraglio, where he was languishing for fourteeen years 
back in the arms of women, between his mother, his nurse, 
and his odalisques, read upon his countenance the failure of 
his reign. A head tottering upon a frail body, a long visage 
that terminated in a pointed chin, the sign of an old child- 
hood, hollow cheeks, petulant and drivelling lips, a com- 
plexion which the blood animated with no sort of color, eyes 
that looked at nothing and seemed permanently dazzled. — 
Such was the exterior of Mustapha I. His intellect, with- 
out being quite extinct, was perpetually asleep ; his life was 
purely mechanical ; he had but those instinctis of pain or 
pleasure, unreflecting and often impetuous, which are the 
passions of the child or the brute; his propensities were 
spasms and not inclinations; his leisure was employed in 
looking, from the summit of a terrace bathed by the current 
of the Bosphorus, at the foaming and subsiding of the 
everlasting waves, and in throwing pieces of gold to the 
fishes in his ponds, which the glitter of the metol attracted 
to the surface. 


Under such a prince, the mother would have been free ta 
reign if she had had the charms of Boxelana or the ambition 
of Safiyé ; but the mother of Mustapha, mastered by the 
kislar-aga, chief of the eunuchs and governor of the 
harem, aflbrded not even to this ambitious eunuch sufficient 
consistency of ideas and character to found upon this woman 
a government of favor. The nurse of the Sultan, married 
to the grand equerry, rivalled her in influence in the harem ; 
thus a Kurdish woman, who had no other title to authority 
than having dandled on her knees through a long infancy, 
an idiot, was about to govern Asia and Europe at the will 
of her caprices. The eunuch, in order to ruin these two 
women, hastened to disclose hunself to the vizier the abso- 
lute incapacity of Mustapha. He conspired with the mother 
of Othmian, eldest son of Achmet I., the overthrow of this 


phftntom and the elevation ot Othman to the throne. No 
one had any interest in sustaining a shadow of a sovereign, 
who could not present a basis for any calculation. A unani- 
mous coup d^Etat, concerted between all the leaders of the 
church, of the law and of the army, and deliberated without 
passion in a general divan, deposed the 26th February, 1618, 
Mustapha, and proclaimed Othman II. 


The deposed Sultan was shut up anew in a retired 
apartment of the seraglio, with his mother, Ynn nurse and his 
slaves. He had not even mind enough to know that he had 
mounted and descended in a few days the steps of corona- 
tion and of abdication. He smiled alike at all the scenes of 
this drama, extending his hand with the same indifference to 
be kissed by his viziers and to be manacled by his jailers. 

Khalil-Pasha commanded during these palace events in 
quality of grand viziw and of serdar the Turkish army to the 
frontiers of Persia. Some advantages which he obtained over 
Schah- Abbas, appeared to him simcient to justify a truce. 
Galled back to Constantinople, the Sultan took firom him the 
seals, and reinstated him in his office of capitan-pasha. 
Othman II. thus punished him for having raised his uncle to 
the throne, having sustained him there for three months, and 
having thus retarded his own accession. He appointed in 
his place, Oguz-Pasha, who left no trace in the government, 
and after some months of indecision, was in turn substituted 
by Ali the Hcmdsome^ son of the governor of Tunis. 

Ali the Handsome was of Greek blood, native of the 
graceful isle of Cos, in the Archipelago. He had the fea- 
tures, the genius, the eloquence and intrigue of his race ; he 
had also the instinct for me sea and the naval aptitude early 
exercised upon the coasts of Tunis. Elevated from grade 
to grade to the governorship of tha island of Cyprus, he 
had justified this run of fortune by great sea services ren- 
dered the Turks. The ^ils and the prizes which he had" 
brought to Constantinople, and with which he had enriched 
the treasury of the Sultan and the arsenal, had dven him a 
popular renown; his grace, his keenness, his heauty, his 
adroit flatteries, had enslaved to him the heart of the young 

Othman II. accorded to his grand vizier the exile of all 


hifl rivals. Tho former grand vizier, Offoz-Mohammed, son- 
in-law of Achmet I., went to languish, despoiled of his pro- 
perty, and to die in Syria ; the chief of the black eunuchs, 
who had made and unmade emperors, expiated his intrigues 
by an exile to the recesses of Ethiopia whence he had come ; 
the khodja, or preceptor of Othman, a companion of whom 
the vizier felt sometimes trammelled by the credit, was sent 
off into the deserts of Mecca. 

Death delivered also the old seraglio of the domination 
of the Sultana Safiyé, wife, mother and grandmother of so 
many princes. She left, after fourteen years of retreat in 
this asylum, her authority in the seraglio to the Sultana 
Kœsem, sumamed ths moonfciced^ favorite wife of the Sul- 
tan Achmet I. The brothers, still children, of the reignine 
padischah, Mourad, Soliman, Kasim, Ibrahim, were sons of 
this Sultana. During her influence over the heart of Ach- 
met, she formed a friendship with her rival, the Sultana 
Mahfirouz, that is to a&j^ favorite of the stars of the nighty 
and mother of Othman. These two women had promised 
mutually, to continue to love each other and to sustain one 
another, in the interest of the life of their children, what- 
ever might be after Achmet their destiny. 

Mahfirouz, faithful to her promises, authorized her son 
Othman, to visit in the old seraglio the Sultana Kœsem. This 
palace and its gardens, a sort of living necropolis of fallen 
powers and repudiated beauties, were never visited by the 
sovereigns on the throne. Their mothers and their wives 
would have viewed with a jealous eye those familiarities be- 
tween the new and the old harem. Othman II. was the 
first of the padischahs who violated, in behalf of a favorite 
of his father, these suspicious scruples of the court. He 
accepted a domestic fete which was given him by the Sul- 
tana Kœsem, and passed four days and four nights in the 
old seraglio, charmed with the conversation of his step- 
mother without exciting the jealousy of his mother. 


An intrigue of the Poles with Gratianl, Prince of Mol- 
davia, gave occasion to hostilities between the Porte and the 
republic of Poland. Iskender-Pasha encountered the Poles 
in the plain of Moldavia. Twenty thousand Sarmatians 
slain in the battle, and ten thousand prisoners put to the 


Bword as rebels, was the sole and prompt result of this war. 
The Poles proposed to repass the Dniester, to pay one hun- 
dred thousand ducats for the expenses of the war, to double 
their annual tribute. They sent hostages, and demanded 
some of Iskender-Pasha, to sanction the security of the nego- 
tiations. Iskender-Pasha designated the Tartar Prince, Can- 
timir, as hostage of the Turks with the Poles. " Are you 
then become giaour (infidel) ? " cried the Tartar Cantimir, 
when Iskender spoke to him of his transmission to the camp 
of the Poles ; " for thirty years back my sabre is steeped in 
the blood of their fathers and of their sons, and you would 
give me up to them to be spitted and roasted by a slow fire ! 
With these Poles who keep no promise, we should hold con- 
verse but with the sabre ;" and he retired, says Nauna, his 
face red with blood, like a glass full of wine. 

All the hostages, to whom Iskender made the same pro- 
position, refused after the example of Cantimir. The Poles 
retreated in disorder to the Dniester. Arrived at the brink 
of the river, they revolted, as usual with them, against their 
general, who wished to establish order in the passage of the 
river, and to save in the first place the cavalry. Pending 
the sedition, the Tartars and the Turks got up to the dis- 
banded Poles. Gratiani, Prince of Moldavia, victim of 
their provocation to revolt, was slain in the rout and his head 
sent to Constantinople. Kalinowsky drowned by his horse 
in the Dniester, Zolkiewsky attained upon the bank, crene- 
lated with their heads the gate of the seraglio ; Koniecpolsky, 
alone spared among the chiefs of this brave and turbulent 
nobility, was cast into the prison of the Seven Towers. 
Forty thousand Poles piled with their bodies the banks of 
the river. These triumphs inflamed the pride and the inso- 
lence of Ali the Handsome : he treated all the Christian 
envoys as if vanquished. 

The father-in-law of Gratiani, named Borissi, agent of 
the republic of Venice, was strangled for having represented 
the grievances of his nation; the ambassador of Bohemia 
and of Hungary, countries subject to Austria and revolted 
against their Emperor, Ferdinand II., who offered their aid 
to the Ottomans, was menaced with the bowstring or the 
bastinado in full divan. 

The extortions of the grand vizier filled the coffers of 
the Sultan. He presented to his mother on the festivals of 
the Beiram, eighteen Mahometan young women, twenty 


Persian horses, and a hundred caftans embroidered in pearls. 
The defterdar, or treasurer, too moderate in his exactions, 
was imprisoned in the fortress of the Seven Towers, and two 
millions in gold of his personal fortune were confiscated. 
The island of Cyprus was taxed fifty thousand ducats beyond 
the usual impost. Persia and the Porte exchanged presents 
of which the list dazzles the imagination of the very Orien- 
tals. A thousand rases of porcelain of China, for^ relyet 
carpets, sixty of the down of camel-foab wrested from the 
womb of their dams, horses, elephants, tigers, rhinoceroses, 
in fine, slaye girls of conspicuous beauty, cemented the false 
and precarious friendship of the two peoples. 

A State crime ensanguined these pomps : a brother of 
the Sultan, Prince Mohammed^ son of another woman than 
Mahfirouz, guilty of giving too much hope to his mother by 
his precocious intelligence and by his virile character, was 
strangled the 12th January, 1621, by the mutes. State 
reason did not pardon the gifts of nature ; stupidity was the 
condition of being allowâ to live. '^ Othman, Othman," 
cried the victim, on seeing the mutes advance to tear him 
from the arms of his mot£er, " I pray God to abridge thy 
days and to overthrow thy empire. May thy life be wrested 
from thee as thou wrestest mine from me! " 

The grand vizier, aleady sick of the stone, at the moment 
when he suggested this ferocious prudence to the Sultan, did 
not survive the crime. A fanatical and stupid Albanian, 
named Housseln-Pasha, succeeded him. He proceeded from 
Hie bostandjis, whence he slipped into the Janissaries. His 
sole maxim of government was that the globe belonged to 
the Sultan, and that each volition of his master was an order 
from heaven. He was one of those men, absolute in their 
opinions through ignorance, who carry aU authority to its 
excess, that is to say, its ruin. He hastened to involve the 
young Sultan, Othman, entered upon his eighteenth year, 
into a useless war against vanquished Poland. 

Upon the route to Adrianople, the Sultan, riding at the 
head of the army, was approached by four dervishes, issuing 
of a sudden from the arch of a bridge, to ask him for alms 
with loud cries. Their meanings, their rags, their gestures, 
set prancing with astonishment the steed of Othman. His 
terror rendered him ferocious, and the heads of the four beg- 
gars rolled at a gesture upon the ground. 



Arrived on the right bank of the Danube, Otbman II., 
wLile bridges were being constructed for the passage of the 
troops, showed himself to the army, arrayed in the cuirass 
of his ancestor, Soliman the Great, of whom he aspired to 
equal the high deeds. His exploits were confined to shooting 
arrows at the prisoners, and striking them with as much cal- 
lousness as if they were a lifeless target. This cold cruelty 
made indignant his own soldiers. 

At Ghoerzim, the sixty thousand Poles, commanded by 
their hereditary princes, repelled the onset of the Turks and 
the Tartars. The srand vizier was displaced in punishment 
of this reverse. Dilawer, pasha of Diarbekir, sumamed {he 
Intrepid, received the seals of the empire. The Poles this 
time sustained by Austria, Bussia, France, the Pope, Hun- 
gary, struggled with firmness against the hundred thousand 
Turks of the Sultan. The losses equal, after a long cam- 
paign, led to the making of a peace, wherein neither of the 
parties either gained or lost but the spilt blood of two hun- 
dred thousand men. 

Othman IT., pressed by love to return to Constan.tin(M)le, 
encountered at Adrianople the young fSivorite slave who had 
just made him father of his first-bom. This odalisque was 
a Eussian, like Eoxelana, and exercised a similar ascendency 
and fascination over the heart of Othman. Her, name 
was, Miliclia. Bom in a cottage, taken off a child by 
the Tartars, made a present of on account of her beauty to 
the grand vizier, Mourad, under the reign of Achmet L, she 
was, on the death of this old man, given to the chief of the 
black eunuchs, Mustapha. The eunuch became attached to 
her as a father, had her brought up as his daughter, and gave 
her her freedom. Othman, naving seen her one day on one 
of his visits to the head of his eunuchs, was dazzled and 
intoxicated with her charms. He asked the chief of the 
eunuchs to cede her to him ; the eunuch answered with re- 
gret that he could not without violating the law, cede a free 
girl but to a man who would make her his wife. Othman 
did not hesitate to remove at this cost the scruples of the 
eunuch. He married Miliclia, and had by her a son. His 
love, augmented by the joy of being a father, made the Bus- 
sian slave supreme over aU the women of his palace, even as 
she reigned over his own heart. 


He found at Constantmople his old preo^tor, tho khod- 
ja Omar-Effendi, returned from his exile to Mecca after the 
death of his enemy, Ali the Handsome. This khodja and 
kblar-agha, Soliman, executioner of the fratracide upon the 
unfortunate Sultan Mohammed, concerted to govern jointly 
their young master. The Russian Sultana, become mother, 
and more and more beloved, filled the palace with festivities 
and plays. 

During one of these exhibitions, in which she caused to be 
represent^ the military scenes of the war of Poland, a 
gun burst, and killed the infant son of the Sultana aad of 
Othman. The dread of leaviog the empire without an heir 
determined Othman to marry four legitimate wives. His 
policy induced him to choose the free daughters of the high- 
est dignitaries of his government. After having eepoused 
a daughter of Pertew-Fasha, he celebrated his nuptiaU with 
the daughter of the mufti. 


It is less dangerous to a despot to violate the laws than 
the customs of his people j the murmurs of the Janissaries 
and of the people were raised against this violation of the 
usages of the' Sultans in the choice of their wives. It was 
feared that the kinship with the families to whom Othman 
II. thus allied himself, would appear one day to ground a 
right to the throne in their descendants. Some parsimo- 
nies of the ministers in the largesses to the spahis in times 
of war, the reduction of the rate of a gold ducat per head 
cut off the enemy on the field of battle, m fine, the early and 
impopular departure of Othman for Syria in the fleet which 
was going to combat Fakhr-eddin, emir of the Druzes, 
changed in a few days the murmur into sedition. 

The grand vizier and the mufti opposed to no purpose 
the departure of the padischah for Syria. The chief of the 
black eunuchs and the preceptor had concerted to advise 
this armed pilgrimage to the holy places; their super- 
stitious piety flattered Othman with the saintly glory of 
having been the first Sultan to visit Mecca. The celebration 
of his nuptials with the daughter of the mufti did but sus- 
pend a few days the expedition. 

A dream precipitated it additionally : Othman dreamt 
the night of his marriage, that the Prophet had approached 


his throne with an angry countenance, and had struck him 
on the face. The preceptor, consulted on the interpretation 
of this vision, replied that it was a severe warning from the 
Prophet, irritated by the retardations opposed by the padis- 
chah to his pilgrimage to the tomb of Medina. This inter- 
pretation appeared to him an oracle. The mufti, his father- 
in-law, resisted courageously the fanatic faction who urged 
the Sultan to an impolitic absence from his capital in fer- 
mentation. Othman tore with anger the fetwa of the mufti, 
in which this supreme interpreter of the religious law de- 
clared that pilgrimage was not obligatory upon sovereigns. 
A sacred vertigo was whirling him to his ruin. 

He gave orders to plant his tents at Scutari, first hah of 
the armies departing for Asia. At this order, the Janissaries 
and the spahis revolted and stoned the chiaoux hastening to 
repress the sedition in the name of the vizier. Convinced that 
the departure of the padischah without them was but the 
result of a project of the favorites of Othman II. of levy- 
ing foreign Janissaries and spahis in Syria, and infringing 
thus their privileges and their military monopoly, they 
assembled tumultuously on the Place of the Hippodrome, 
and drew up a question of law, put in these terms to the 

" Is it lawfully permitted to slay advisers who urge the 
Sultan to illegal novelties, and who dilapidate the public 
property of the true Mussulmans ? " 

The mufti, without fearing the dangerous caprices of his 
son-in-law, replied, that such a murder was permitted ; this 
response legitimated the revolt. 

The aga of the Janissaries and the officers of the regi- 
ments forming the garrison of Constantinople, were chased 
with stones from the Hippodrome, where the seditious were 
encamped. The Janissaries, already embarked upon the fleet 
at anchor in the Sea of Marmora, near the fortress of the 
Seven Towers, disembarked in spite of their officers and ran 
to join their comfades on the square of the meat-market. 
Assembled in a body before the palace of the preceptor, they 
called him to his window and enjoined him to come down 
and take word to the padischah from his troops. 

The preceptor, instead of acceding to this summons, 

made his escape by the gardens, in the disguise of a dervish. 

The palace of the grand vizier, of whom the soldiers did not 

know the innocence, was defended with fire-arms against their 

Vol. til— 8 


reokleas fury. Without weap(m8 to force the palace, the fiM- 
tionists ran to search them in the ffonamiths^ shops adjac^it 
to the bazar ; the gunsmiths by their supplications persuaded 
them to withdraw. Night fell and dbpersed them in their 


The seraglio, shut up, was full of trouble and conflictii^ 
counsels. Othman II., having convoked there the oulemas, 
ordinary and respected organs of public opinion, demanded 
of them the cause of these agitations. They told him that 
*^ his departure for Mecca gave inquietude to the soldiers and 
fired them with anger against his preceptor and the chief of 
the eunuchs, reputed the advisers of this project."—" Go," 
replied to them with obstinacy the Sultan, '< and tell the 
troops that I consent to give up my journey into Asia, but 
that I will not consent to remove either my khodja or my 

Darkness and sleep prevented the oulemas from accom- 
plishing their errand before daylight ; vague rumors increaised 
the peril during this night It was told to the Janissaries 
that the bostandjis, mustered in a body in the gardens of the 
seraglio, were preparing a crushing sally into the city ; it 
was said to the bostandjis that the Janissaries were debark- 
ing the cannons of the fleet to make a breach in the gates and 
walls of the gardens. 


The sun of the 19th May, 1622, arose upon Turk^ 
under these auspices. The Janissaries and the spahis, en- 
camped in the vestibules and in the courts of the mosque of 
Mahomet II., sent a deputation to the oulemas to convoke 
them to a conference. The oulemas replied that they would 
not join themselves to a camp of soldiers in insurrection, 
but that they were going to meet in the Place of the Hippo- 
drome, where there would be an opportunity of attending 
their deliberations. The revolters, at these words, said reli- 
giously their morning prayer, and after having invoked three 
times with loud voice the name of God, went in order to the 

The mufti was there awaiting them, surrounded with the 

twelve priprâpal sheiks, or preachers of the mosques of the 
capital. Two secretaries of the troops, Khalil and Feredoun, 
presented, in the name of the soldiers, a list of six victims, 
of whom the revolters demanded the heads, in expiation of 
their crimes. These six names, devoted to death in the 
tablet of proscription, were those of Khodja-Omar ; of the 
kislar-aga, or chief of thé eunuchs, Suleiman ; of the segh- 
ban-bashi Nassouh, of the caïmakam Ahmed, of the high 
treasurer Baki, and in fine, of the grand vizier Dilawer- 
Pasha (the Intrepid). 

The oulemas and the mufti, after having debated upon 
some of the names, and especially upon that of Pilawer- 
Pasha, the grand vizier, whom they knew to be opposed like 
themselves to the journey, went to the palace to present 
to Othman II. the conditions of the army. 

" Take no farther notice of them," replied disdainfully 
the Sultan ; " they are a rabble without chiefs who will soon 
disperse of themselves through anarchy." 

" Padischah," replied the sheiks, " whatever is not granted 
to revolutioners, they take ; your illustrious ancestors, in 
similar junctures, have always opposed such exigencies by 
some sacrifices to justice or to necessity." 

"Hold your tongues," cried Othman in a peremptory 
tone, " you talk as if you were yourselves the counsellors of 
the revolt, and if you say a word more I will have your 
heads cut off as their accomplices." 

The oulemas disconcerted remained silent; their faces 
expressed their fears, less of the wrath than of the obstinacy 
of the Sultan. The aged Housseïn-Pasha, formerly grand 
vizier, a man whose age and whose fidelity placed his devot- 
edness above suspicion, threw himself in tears at the feet of 
Othman : 

" My padischah," said he, " what are we in your presence ? 
If the rebels demand also my head, hasten to throw it to 
them; forget us and think of your own safety." Othman 
was affected, but inflexible. The oulemas and the mufti 
were confined as hostages in the gardens of the seraglio, and 
the sedition was left to growl on outside the walls. 


The delay of the oulemas in bearing back to the Place 
of the Hippodrome the answer of the Sultan, led the revolt- 


en to suppose that the seraglio was defended by the bos- 
tandjis and by the gunners in force, and that their parley- 
men were retained prisoners. One of them, to assure him- 
self with his own eyes of the attitude and of the number of 
the defenders of the seraglio, ascended to the top of one of 
the minarets of Saint Sophia, and directed from thence his 
gaze into the interior of the imperial gardens ; they were 
empty. The certainty of not encountering resistance doubled 
the daring of the rioters ; they collected in the first court, 
filled it with their throng, and mounted upon the crenelated 
platforms of the walls which separated the first court from 
the second. The wood-boxes of the court supplied weapons 
to those who had none ; inactive nevertheless in this camp 
for some hours, they seemed to accord the Sultan time for 
reflection and the dignity of concessions. 

From moment to moment an only cry interrupted this 
sinister silence; this cry demanded the heads of the khodja, 
of the eunuch and of the grand vizier. The sole crime of 
Dilawer-Pasha was to have the day before caused his palace 
to be defended against the rioters, and to have strewed with 
the bodies of armed rebels the threshold of his palace. 


The gates of the second court swung at last upon their 
hinges, and it was instantly thronged by the troops. The 
same waiting, the same silence, the same cry were here repeat- 
ed. The gates of Felicity j guarded by some white eunuchs, 
were burst open like the former by the assault of the soldiers, 
armed with logs. They seemed to hesitate, however, through 
a respect of habit, to enter the portal which they had thrown 
open. One of the oulemas, seated on a block of stone be- 
fore the vestibule of the palace, advanced towards the sol- 
diers and said to them in a low voice : " Our words have been 
of no avail ; enter and speak yourselves." 

The crowd entered timidly at first, and as if undecided 
what they were going to will or venture. A single voice 
became, as always, the unanimous voice of the multitude. 
*• We want the Sultan Mustapha," said this voice, wrung with- 
out deliberation from the desperate impatience of a single 
individual, or perhaps prompted by some eunuchs to an ac- 
complice. " Yes, yes, we want the Sultan Mustapha," re- 


peated in an instant the crowd, as if relieved û'om the 
oppression of its incertitude. 

At this accidental rallying-word of the revolters, the 
multitude ingulfed itself in the opened portals of the 
palace, and inundated the vestibule and the apartments. 
They ran through them at random and without guidance, 
going astray in this endless labyrinth of the seraglio and of 
the gardens which separate the different kiosks, and yocifer- 
ating still with growing vigor the same cry : 

"We want the Sultan Mustapha." 

AU was desert, silence, mystery, to the revolters in this 
city of kiosks, of gardens and of courts. An oulema, more 
familiar than they were with the places, showed them with 
the finger the harem. It was surounded with a thick wall, 
which was without doors on the side of the gardens. The 
soldiers, in order to cross it, piled a mass of wood against 
the wall, to penetrate into the harem by the windows of the 

While they were demolishing the cupola, on calling 
loudly the name of Mustapha, a voice, remote and timidly 
articulated, cried from the depths of the harem : " The 
Sultan Mustapha is here." 

This voice, recognized as that of the invisible captive, 
animated with a desperate ardor the assailants. Despite the 
arrows shot from below at them by some negroes, eunuchs 
faithful unto death to their post, three Janissaries descended 
by ropes from the unroofed cupola into the halls of the 
harem, and ran, invoking the name of Mustapha, through the 
rooms and corridors of the sacred palace. They found at 
last in a back room, the unfortunate Mustapha, half reclined 
upon an old mattress, and guarded by two mute slaves stand- 
ing before him. 

" My padischah," said to him in falling at his feet the 
three Janissaries, "the army is waiting outside to crown 

The idiot, as insensible to the restoration as to the fall, 
replied to them only with a vacant smile : " I am thirsty." 
Since the commencement of the sedition, through inadvertence 
or through cruelty, neither nourishment nor water had been 
brought to his retreat. The Janissaries on the roof passed 
down some water in a leathern vessel. One of those who 
entered by the roof into his prison, went out by the door and 
ran to the old seraglio, to announce to his mother that hfis 


son had been found alive, and that he was going to be rein- 
stalled npon the throne. 


While the mother, who beliered her son to hare been 
strangled, passed from despair to the delirium of joy, Mus- 
tapha, hoisted on his mattress aloft upon the cupola, was 
received into the arms of the Janissaries, let down into the 
court, and carried, to be shown the people, upon the horse of 
the mufti. But his debility and his emotion disabling him 
to keep on horseback, even with the assistance of the two 
slaves who supported him beneath the arms, he was dis- 
mounted and exhibited upon a throne in the hall of the 
palace. Confounded by the acclamations and the prostrations 
of the crowd, he with a gesture of infantile horror repulsed 
the aspect of the naked sabres which were dazzling hb eyes, 
enfeebled by his dark confinement. 

During this exhibition of Mustapha I. upon the throne, 
other scenes were agitating the courts on the outside, between 
the oulemas and the rioters. The barrack proclamation of 
Mustapha was one of those hazards of revolutions which 
rashly overstep the end, and which consternate the very agi- 
tators by the excess of their own victory. The mufti, 
father-in-law of Othman II., and the oulemas, enlightened 
men, who knew the imbecility of the uncle of Othman, were 
very far from the idea of driving from the throne a prince, 
ill counselled, to place on it a prmce incapable of any coun- 
sel at alh They merely wished to substitute themselves for 
the preceptor and the eunuch. Disconcerted spectators in 
the court of the proclamation and of the reappearance of 
the idiot, they regarded this oration but as one of those de- 
liriums of the people, or of a soldiery, which must fall before 
the reprobation of statesmen. A violent altercation arose 
between them and the Janissaries, liberators of Mustapha. 

They had hastened at the first cries of the multitude in 
favor of Mustapha I. to advise Othman II., retired into the 
depths of the harem, to deliver up the khodja and the grand 
vizier. Othman, who retained near him these two victims 
in order to sacrifice them at the last necessity, at the ransom 
of his own head, caused to be opened in silence a secret door 
of the palace, and threw out his two friends to the fury of 
the soldiers. Their bodies gratified without deflecting the 


onieltj of the assassins ; the ciles of long live the SvUan 
Mustapha I continued to ring around the seraglio. 

" Madmen, what more do you want ? " said vainly the 
oulemas to the soldiers ; " you have obtained more than you 
had asked for ; leave now the padischah in peace." " We 
have, in fact, that which we wanted," replied ironically the 
soldiers and the people ; " we have restored our Sultan Mus- 
tapha I." " Brothers and companions," resumed the mufti 
and the sheiks, ^' the Sultan Othman salutes and congratulates 
you ; he has delivered to you those whom you demanded, and 
he will deliver you others still if you require it ; we certify 
it to you in his name. But if you replace the Sultan Mus- 
tapha on the throne which he cannot occupy, you prepare for 
yourselves and the Ottomans calamities and repentings; 
listen to the wise." " You should have told us so before," 
replied the soldiers ; " now it is too late ; we have recovered 
our padischah Mustapha and you must recognize him with 
us." " No, no, that is not legal, so long as the Sultan Oth- 
man shall be upon the throne," continued obstinately the oulcr 
mas. " Legal or not," cried the more impatient of the peo- 
ple and of the army ; " here is what will compel you to 
silence or to the proclamation of the sovereign to whom we 
render what is his due, the empire !" 

The sabres, the axes and the sticks of wood lifted over 
the head of the mufti and of the sheiks, taught them that 
a sedition is never repressed by those who have themselves 
excited it. One amongst them died of fear upon the spot, 
the others saluted with the voice the idiot whom they 
denounced at heart. The muezzins, mounting by their orders 
upon the minarets of the mosques, proclaimed through the 
capital the Sultan Mustapha I., padischah of the Ottomans. 
He was hoisted upon a chariot with the two slaves compan- 
ions of his captivity ; a mameluke, Dervish- Aga, escorted him 
on horseback in guise of the grand equerry ; the people and 
the soldiers tacMed themselves to the coach-pole and con- 
ducted the Sultan with his seditious cortege to the old 
seraglio, to present him to his mother. The mother and the 
son embraced each other and congratulated themselves on 
having escaped the fate of the Sultana Mahfirouz and of her 
son, immolated some days before by order of Othman II. 



Meanwhile the inyisible Othman still intimidated the 
revoit. The ramor ran that he had gained Scutari in dis- 
guise, and that he was to return with a corps of fiuthful Jan- 
issaries to aveuge his outrages, reconquer the seraglio and 
crush Mustapha I. The revolters, uneasy for the security of 
their idol, conducted the new Sultan and his mother into the 
mosque of the Janissaries there to watch over him during 
the night 

Ouiman had in fact left the seraglio ; flying the violated 
precincts of his palace, he had slipped in ^e dark along to 
the beach, where the bostandjis his rowers kept his bar^ 
afloat to transport him to Scutari But ^he terror of me 
invaded seraglio and of the gardens, overrun by the revolters, 
had put the rowers to flight. There was no seaman to aid 
Othman to weigh anchor and take the management of one 
of his caiques. He escaped with Housseïn-Pasha, hb former 
vizier, by a postern gate of the garden, and took refuge in an 
upper apartment of the mosque of the princes, adjacent to 
the barracks of the Janissaries to negotiate with them his 
reconciliation and to implore their support. Housseïn-Pasha 
walked behind him, bearing purses of gold to tempt the 
cupidity of the soldiers. 

In going along, a servitor of Housseïn-Pasha remarked in 
a low voice to the old vizier : " Is it quite prudent however 
to bring the Sultan so near the barrack of his Janissaries, who 
have just set upon the throne another padischah ? " — " The 
empire and fortune," replied with a religious resignation to 
fatality the ex-grand vizier, ^' belong to him to whom they 
are given; it matters little who will be Sultan while the 
peace of the world is not interrupted." The world in the 
language of the Ottoman statesmen was the capital of the 


From his unknown retreat in the mosque of the princes, 
Othman II. sent for the aga of the Janissaries, who deplored 
secretly the conduct of his soldiers. He charged him to 
offer fifty ducats to each man, a piece of scarlet cloth for 
their uniform, and an increase of pay of ten aspers per day 
if they would return to duty and depose Mustapha I. 


The officers, informed of these offers by the general, 
showed themselves inclined to accede to them. At sunrise, 
they assembled the Janissaries in the court of their barrack 
The general mounted the porch-steps to be heard the farther 
in haranguing them* But the soldiers, distrustful, suspected 
some snare. They had got wind of the nocturnal confer- 
ences of the aga with the emissaries of Othman. At the 
first words of weir chief recommending an accommodation : 
" Down 1 down 1 with the traitor," cried they from the court 
to the Janissaries immediately surrounding the general; 
" strike the traitor, do not let him go on." 

A soldier, acccomplice of all the others, pushed at these 
cries the aga off the platform of the porch and precipitated 
him down the steps; a thousand nf&ed sabres cut him to 
pieces before the last breath had departed. The lieutenant 
or kyaya of the general and the tschaousch, chief of his 
escort, fled into the mosque to announce the murder to 0th* 
man, of whom they knew the asylum. 

While this prince and his latest friends were deploring 
the fate of the aga, an omen of the same fate to themselves, 
a band of Janissaries ran to the old seraglio to salute the 
Sultana mother of Mustapha, and knowing the imbecility of 
the son they prayed her to appoint herself a grand vizier 
capable of seizing and of saving the empire. 

" Is there any one amongst you who can write ? " demanded 
this woman, an illiterate slave herself, of the soldiers. A 
private Janissary, named Kara-Mossab, stepped forth from 
the ranks ; he composed and committed to writing, under the 
direction of the Sultana, the diplomas of the chief dignities 
to which she, a woman, and a common soldier were, from 
the depths of the old seraglio, to appoint in concert the men 
whose names should first occur to the seditious. 

Baoud-Pasha, son-in-law and favorite of Achmet I., was 
appointed grand vizier unknown to him; Dervish- A^a, he 
who rode on horseback alongside the grotesque chariot 
wherein the populace drew Mustapha through the streets, 
received the office of grand equerry; in fine, Kara-Mossab 
himself, who held the pen, was raised to the rank of marshal 
of the palace, in recompense, without doubt, of the daring 
initiative which he had suggested to the Sultana. 
Vol. III.— 8* 

178 HiaroM of tùbeby. 


But the Janissaries and the people would already wait 
no longer, to put in exercise their authority and their anar* 
chioal vengeances, the sanction of the grand rizier or of the 
mufti.* Masters of a phantom sovereign whom thej sur* 
rounded in their aga's palace, they made him deliver at their 
pleasure, by a gesture, by a cry, by an entreaty as so<m 
accorded as presented, all the oracles that were thought 
requisite to their purposes. The murders of Omer the 
khodja, of Nassouh the ex-grand vizier, of Bake the treasu- 
rer, were ratified too late ; those of Ahmed the caïmakam 
and of all the viziers whose name arose to the lips of an 
enemy or of a malcontent, were proscribed with acclamation. 
All the measures of police or of discipline taken against the 
debauchery and license of the taverns in the last days of ^e 
reign of Othman II. were abolished. 

The soldiers, always prompt to sacrifice the civic libertieS| 
demanded unanimously that the new grand vizier, their 
creature and work, should govern dictatorially the empire 
with the absolute despotism of a mess-master. The Sultan, 
who was incapable of refusing or of consenting, acquiesced 
with a nod of the head, under the prompting of two black 
slaves standing behind him, like nurses by the side of an 


Meanwhile those of the Janissaries who had just massacred 
their general on the steps of the barrack went about, upon 
the indication of some traitors, in search of Othman II. 
They were pointed out with the finger the ill-covered refuge 
of the prince in the kitchens of the poor, appurtenant to the 
mosque of the tombs. They discovered him crouched under- 
neath some mats, and having on but a shirt or white tunic 
fitting closely to the body, and for turban a red skull<^i^ 
like that of the eunuchs in the interior of the harem. 

A soldier, through derision or through pity, coifed him 
with his own turban. The others, dragging and pushing him 
brutally into the court of the mosque, wMch rung with im- 

* Thus the peq>le, m the fiist moment of their power, broke down 
those ehecks which the most absolute of despotisms had itself submitted 
to for centuries. — Tran^ator» 


precations and abuses, made Mm mount a lame horse, bare- 
boned and mangey, which was being taken to the receptacle 
of dead and useless animals. It was from this itinerant pillory 
that they exhibited to the people him who, the day before, 
diffused, according to the Ottoman expression, " his shadow 
over the world." 

The old vizier, Housseïn-Pasha, and the chief of the 
bostandjis, Mahmoud, surprised in the same asylum where 
they were unwilling to desert their master, were driven by 
blows of the flat of the sabres at the heels of the horse. 
Mahmoud was èpared by the soldiers because he had, as 
chief of the police of the taverns, connived at the carousals 
which his patrols used to observe at night. As to the old 
vizier Houssein, a veteran dreaded by the troops on account 
of the severity of his reprimands in the camps, the Janissa- 
ries did not pardon him for having led them to the mouth of 
the cannons in the last war with Poland, and for having 
answered to those who represented to him his prodigality of 
the blood of the troops : " What signifies our life I The 
great object is victory I Does the padischah lack soldiers ? 
When we shall have no more asses, we will mount horses." 

Not being able to plunge their sabres into his heart, pro- 
tected by the coat of mail which he wore imderneath his caf- 
tan, they cut off the head, which they carried in triumph 
before the Sultan and threw the body under the feet of the 
horse. " Alas I " said Othman, forgetting his own misery to 
lament his old friend, " he, at least, was very innocent ; if I 
had followed his advice, misfortune and ruin would not have 
befallen me." 

These noble complaints did not mollify the soldiers ; in a 
military mob all turns into crime against the victims, not 
excepting their attitude. It despises them if they are 
cowardly ; it hates them if they prove courageous. Raillery 
blindfolds pity in the people : " Dear Othman ! noble padis- 
chah ! " cried to him the relentless soldiers who sought for 
merriment in execution, "young and beautiful prince, of 
whom the word is the law of the world, are you not pleased 
to patrol this night the streets of Constantinople attended 
by your faithful bostandjis to catch the drunkards detained 
late in the taverns by Greek wine, to chain the Janissaries 
and the spahis on the galleys of your fleet and to have them 
thrown into the sea ? " The people applauded by bursts of 
ribald joviality these barrack derisions. 


Others, more serious in their fury, demanded of him : 
" If it was by miserable reviews of seghbans that his ances- 
tors had raised the edifice of the empire ; if it was Syrians, 
Egyptians, bostandjis who built the fortresses of the Danube 
and of the Euphrates." 

A Janissary, more dastardly and ferocious than the 
others, son of a goldsmith of Constantinople and depraved 
by the ignoble vices of the capital, walked at the side of his 
horse and pinched the skin of his leg between his two fingers 
in order to extort from him a cry of pain. " Accursed 
wretch ! " said the Sultan, weeping in spite of himself, with 
shame and with rage, " dost thou not remember that I was 
yesterday thy padischah, and that thou didst postrate thyself 
before him whom thou dost now outrage ? " 

Arrived at the barrack in front of the mosque, where 
Mustapha I. had been conducted by the people, Othman was 
delivered to the guard and mercy of the chief of the Jaiiis- 
saries. The window of the chamber where the Janissaries 
watched their victim was visible from the gallery of the 
mosque. The two princes and the two reigns were thus sepa- 
rated but by the square. The people and the soldiers 
rioted between the barrack and the temple, the first saluting 
with their acclamations the new prince, the others abusing 
and execrating hb predecessor. 

The tragic grandeur and the pity of so singular a specta- 
cle began however to affect the multitude. The muezzins 
being mounted at mid-day on the high galleries of the mina- 
rets to call the people to prayer, the rumor ran that it was 
the signal for the execution of Othman. All faces on the 
square were forthwith turned towards the barrack, where the 
deed must be expected to take place : 

" No>.no, no," cried a thousand voices in the crowd, " ad- 
dressing themselves to the Janissaries of the ffuard in the mess- 
room ; no harm ought by any means to be done the deposed 
Sultan. That the Sultan Mustapha should reign at present 
over us, we are willing, but let the life of the Sultan Oth- 
man be preserved against future casualties." 

The grand vizier, Daoud-Pasha, who had just arrived 
upon the place, went up to the room which served as prison 
for Othman, and, pushing him with the hand to the window, 
he showed him to the people to appease their clamors and 
to attest that he was still alive. 



This unexpected emotion of the people in his favor gave 
something of hope to Othman II. ; he ventured to appeal to 
the heart and reason of his gaoler : " What do you intend 
to do with your emperor ? " said he to the soldiers, shaken 
by the cries of pity of the people. " What I it is you, 
Janissaries, the supporters of the empire, who accomplish its 
ruin and your own ! " Then remembering ±he old turban 
that was dishonoring his head, and throwing it with indigna- 
tion away from him, and imploring with the brow bare, the 
eyes in tears, the voice broken with sobbings, his guards : 
" If I have involuntarily oflfended you," said he to them, 
" pardon me ; yesterday I was your padischah, to-day I am 
nothing ; let me be an example to you I You also may have 
to experience the vicissitudes of this world, you also may 
have need of commiseration." 

The soldiers were becoming affected, the chief of the 
chiaoux of the grand vizier who had gone up with Daoud- 
Pasha to the room, wished to prevent, by stifling his voice, 
the effect of the supplications of Othman. He threw the 
cord around his neck to strangle him. But Othman, who 
spied him with the eye, as the convict feels by presentiment 
the presence of the executioner, passed his two vigorous 
hands between the cord and his throat, and, untying the slip- 
knot, suspended at least a moment his death. 

The of&cers of the Janissaries present cried to the 
chiaoux to precipitate nothing in such a moment, in such a 
place and before the people, who would render him responsi- 
ble for the death of a Sultan whom there appeared a dispo- 
sition to spare. Daoud-Pasha, anxious to press an execution 
which would assure the throne to his pupil, influence to the 
Sultana his stepmother, the government to himself, encour- 
aged with a look the executioners : 

" Babarian, what is it then that I have done to thee," 
said Othman, " that thou comest to beg here my death from 
my slaves ? Have I not twice rescued thee by a word from 
the death which the grand vizier wished to inflict on thee ? 
Have I not replaced thee in spite of the divan in the digni- 
ties of which thou hadst been stript? Whence has sprung 
thy virulent hatred against me ? " 

^^ He is a serpent," cried from the other side of the place 
the Sultana mother of Mustapha to the Janissaries, of whom 


she saw the indecision, and of whcnn she heard the tomolts ; 
'' he is a serpent, do not hearken to him ; if he slips from 
your hands, he will put you all to death." 

Daoud-Pasha, who heard the voice of the Sultana, made 
a sign to the headsmen to tighten the cord ; but the officers 
interfered to obey the murmur of pity in the crowd. 0th- 
man IL, taking confidence from their intervention, turned 
towards the mess-master, who was answerable for him to his 
comrades : " Who has given thee thy employment ? " asked 
he of him, hoping that it was himself, and that gratitude 
would be awakened by the remembrance of benefaction. — " It 
is the Sultan Mustapha," responded the commander of the 
barrack. — " The Sultan Mustapha," rejoined Othman, " is an 
idiot who does not know even his own name; come, open 
this window and let me speak to my servants." 

The officer, overawed or affected, opened a window of 
the room that looked upon the peristyle of the mosque, of 
which an ancle touched the barrack of the Janissaries. The 
instinct of life in a youn^ man who shrunk from death, the 
energy of character which had not weakened since the day 
before in a sovereign precipitated from the throne, the hope 
which the favoring cries restored to his soul, the conscious- 
ness of the imbecility of the competitor opposed to him, 
experience of the fickleness of popular movements, confi- 
dence, in fine, in the impression which must be wrought upon 
the multitude by the aspect of his nakedness and the elo- 
quence of his tears — all this gave to Othman accents as 
pathetic as the situation. He had disconcerted the soldiers, 
floored the grand viader, he did not doubt of managing the 

" My agas, my spahis, my Janissaries," cried he to the 
soldiery who listened to him underneath, "and you my 
fathers, who have protected me in my cradle, defended me 
in the camps, instructed me in the divans, guarded me upon 
the throne, if through ignorance, through youth, through 
mistaken good intention I have given ear to unfortunate 
counsels, wherefore humble me in this manner to the debase- 
ment of your own sovereignty ? If you do not wish me for 
your padischah, say so at once, and I will know how of 
myself to descend and to die without degrading either you 
or me by those indignities that cast dishonor on the Ottoman 
name." The people mingled among the soldiers shed tears 


at iiiese words, and a few Toioes already oned to pardon 
repentance, and to reconduct Othman to the seraglio. 


The Sultana, mother of Mustapha, at the voice of Oth- 
man II. and at the noise of those fluctuations of the multi- 
tude, had come out upon the gallery of the mosque, then 
re-entered at the cries of terror of her own son to give him 
confidence and to suggest him a countenance less infantile. 
But the poor phantom of a sovereign had no sooner lost sight 
of his mouher than he relapsed into his fa.intings. At the 
slightest counter-shock of the external tumults produced by 
the strife of clamors between the people and the soldiers, he 
bounded frightened on his divan. Seated on the mihrab of 
the mosque between his two mute and attentive slaves, he 
would start up with a jerk at the louder rumblings of the 
square below, fancying that the satellites of Othman were 
forcing the doors to immolate him, would rush to the window 
as if to fly them, and, clinging to the gating which barred 
the glass outside, would tear his feeble hands with the angles 
of the iron trellis, in the effort to force it open and give him 
an issue for escape. His two slaves reseated him with diffi- 
culty in his place. The ^ctators, full at once of terror and 
of pity, were at a loss whether they ought rather to deplore 
the lot of such a creature in having been carried against his 
will to the throne, or the empire in having by and by to sup- 
port such a master. 

" Come, come, be calm, I am here, my lion," his mother 
used to say, receiving him trembling in her arms. '^ My 
lion, my tiger, my son, my padischah, be worthy of thy peo- 
}^e and of thy mother ; thou seest thy officers kneel respect- 
fully, and that I do not tremble." 

Othman on the other side, within a few paces of the 
mihrab of the mosque, although in the peristyle of another 
edifice adjacent, was struggling for life with the same intre- 
pidity which animated the Sultana for the life of her son and 
for the empire. Pale, half-naked, bare headed, his shirt torn 
off his shoulders, he adjured by turns Daoud, the people, the 
soldiers to have pity on him and on themselves by reflecting 
to what a master they were about to give themselves upon 
the corpse of their legitimate padischah. 

The gestures of the Sultana, the cries of Mustapha, the 


supplioations and the objurgations of Qthman, dû^nted with 
each other alternately or altogether the attention of the 
multitude. Daoud-Pasha, still behind his victim with his 
executioners, availed himself of one of those moments when 
the heads of the crowd were turned towards the gallery of 
the mosque, and ordered a third time the chief of the 
chiaoux to throw the cord around the neck of the Sultan. 

The commander of the barrack, who had already pro« 
longed the agony of Othman, by untying the noose and in 
permitting him to present himself at the window to address 
the spectators, detached a third time the cord and flung it 
indignantly to the chiaoux. The Janissaries, whose first 
fury had had time to evaporate and to change into compas- 
sion, applauded the humanity of the barrack-master. Daoud 
withdrew in adjourning reluctantly the crime, and Othman, 
confided to the guard of the Janissaries, remained suspended 
between death and life in the barrack, with a handful of old 


The grand vizier passed from the barrack into the 
mosque, and hastened to avail himself of the rest of the day 
to put Mustapha I. in possession of the seraglio and of the 
throne. The same uncovered car, drawn by the revolted 
soldiers and by the populace, which had conducted Musta- 
ha to the palace of his mother, conveyed him also between 
is two négresses from the mosque to the seraglio. A count- 
less multitude saluted him with pity, with good wishes, with 
acclamations. The Ottomans, compassionate for his double 
misfortune, rejoicing at the restoration of liberty to a poor 
captive, forgot for a moment that they were also giving the 
throne to a mere shadow. 

During this march, half triumphal, half derisory, Daoud- 
Pasha, for the purpose of removing from their barrack the 
mass of the Janissaries, of whom the presence intimidated 
his designs, had them apprised secretly, by his confidants, 
of the treasures which Housseïn-Pasha and Othman II. had 
deposited the day before in the palace of the aga, from which 
the fugitive prince had been taken to conduct him to the 
barracks. At this intelligence, the Janissaries quitted tumul- 
tuously their mess-rooms, forgot Othman, and precipitated 
themselves in a throng upon we aga's palace^ to pillage and 



dmde amongst tbem the pretended treasures. They found 
the treasures of Housseïn, and the tumultuous partition of 
this plunder kept them aloof, distracted and drunk in the 
taverns a part of the night. 

Daoud, informed of their negligence to watch their host- 
age, ran by torchlight with a band of chiauox and bostandjis 
to the barrack, under pretext of transferring the deposed 
sovereign to a prison more worthy of the majesty of the 
prisoner. This escort, lighted by torches, led through the 
streets the most tumultuous, the unfortunate Othman to the 
fortress of the Seven Towers. The people, who followed 
with different feelings the cortege, withdrew gradually when 
the fortress doors had been closed upon the prisoner. 

The rumor ran in the crowd that the life of Othman 
would be spared to restore him repentant and corrected to 
the throne, if his uncle should be found a second time inca- 
pable of reigning. The thought of death was neither in the 
mind nor in the wishes of any Ottoman uninterested in the 
question of the throne. Those alone, in small number, de- 
sired his death, who felt themselves unpardonable through 
the excess of their outrages, and who could not live in 
security if they should leave him life : such were Daoud and 
the Sultana, thenceforth arbiters of the fate of Othman, and 
whom his life condemned to tremble constantly for their do- 
minion and even their head. 

Accordingly, the doors of the fortress of the SeVen * 
Towers were sarcely shut upon Othman II., and the silence 
outside had scarce announced the dispersion of the people 
from the streets, when Daoud-Pasha, assisted by the chief 
of the djebcdjis and by two robust chiaoux, entered the 
chamber of the prisoner, bearing the cord of silk in his 

Othman, of whom twenty hours of anguish had neither 
prostrated the energy, nor enervated the vigor, and who had 
three times already eluded death by retarding it, combated 
with desperation against his four assassins. The chamber 
where the scene had taken place, rung a long time with the 
cries, with the rumblings, with the reactions of a terrible 
struggle between this young man of eighteen years and those 
well-practised executioners. It was protracted for a long 
time in the dark : Othman doubtless hoped, that, by sus- 
taining it till the extinction of his strength, the noise might 
bring to his relief the guards of the Seven Towers, or that 


the people might force the gates at the voice of their Sultan* 
The guards were accomplices and the people were gone. 

The chief of the djebedjis succeeded at last in passing 
and in pressing the noose of the string around the neck of 
Othman, while Daoud and the two chiaoux, with their knees 
upon his breast, tried to tear away his hands from it, and 
to hold still his legs. Their united efforts were insufficient 
to hold thU lion, when one of those ferocious executioners, 
named Kalender-Oghli, seised and squeezed with an iron 
grasp, the sources of virility in the body of Othman. The 
pain wrung a terrible cry from the young man ; he fell into 
a swoon ; he was strangled, already inanimate. 

Daoud cut off one of the ears with his own poniard, and 
wrapped this bleeding cartilage in his silk handkerchief, to 
carry to the Sultana Validé this certain testimonial of the 
reality of the death of Othman II. and of the uncontested 
diadem of her son. It was the first sacrilege of the Otto- 
mans against the majesty of ihs ihadow of God, 


M. de Hammer, whose erudition often compares race to 
race, crime to crime, with advantage to human experience, 
has drawn a parallel between the death of the Greek Empe- 
ror, Andronicus, and that of the Turkish Emperor, Othman, 
'which we think worthy of transcription. 

'^ The ûite of Andronicus and that of Othman II. pre- 
sent," says he, " remarkable similitudes. When Andronicus 
was conducted to Chilaï (now Bebek) where he had formerly 
caused to be blinded and thrown into prison Alexis Oome- 
nus, the sea, as if it bore a remembrance of the executions 
with which he had so often stained its waves, rejected him 
with violence on the shore. Loaded with chains by the 
archers, he underwent, in presence of his very competitor 
Isaac, the most ignominious treatment : he was buffeted on 
the cheeks; he was kicked with the foot; the women, whose 
husbands he had deprived of sight, tore off his hair and 
broke in his teeth ; a hand was cut off him, an eye was 
plucked out, and he was thrown into the tower Anemas of 
the palace of the Blakernes, where he remained without any 
species of nourishment. A few davs after, he was deprived 
of the remaining eye, and was marched through the city upon 
a mangy camel, to make him serve for a laughing butt to 


the populace. Some of these knocked him on the head with 
sticks, others emptied upon him vases of urine and stuffed 
his nostrils with dirt ; others still squeezed into his mouth 
sponges saturated with filth. Then he was hanged upon the 
Hippodrome, hard by the two columns, between the statues 
of the she-wolf and of the hyena. In the midst of his suf- 
ferings, he cried : " Lord^ have pity on me / break not a reèd 
àUflready broken. His ruffianly tormentors tore off his clothes ; 
one of them plunged a pike down his throat into the intes- 
tines. Two Latins pierced his sides with their swords, to 
see which of them had the keenest edge. Then he expired, in 
the act of raising towards his mouth the bleeding stump of 
his arm, of which probably he wished to suck the blood to 
slake his thirst. This execution is the most cruel and the 
most ignominious of those which have been ever inflicted on 
a dethroned sovereign, and here the Byzantine barbarity has 
far surpassed the Turkish." 

We will not develope this bloody parallel of the German 
historian, in aggravation or in excuse of the one or of the 
other crime. We will only say that Andronicus had 
merited death, and that Othman II. had merited but pity. 
But the bare death of a guilty prince is a crime when in- 
flicted without judgment. The people who inflict punishment 
without right, without judges, and without pity, take in turn 
the crime upon themselves, and dishonor humanity instead of 
aven^ng it. 

The reign of Othman II. left behind it no other trace 
than his dead body to the history of the Ottomans. 


His body was buried clandestinely during the night in 
the tomb of his fethers. The mufti, of whom Othman II. 
had espoused in spite of him <Jie only daughter, and who did 
not pardon the dead Sultan the moral violence which he had 
endured in not daring to decline this honor, refused to pray 
upon his tomb ; he abdicated voluntarily the pontificate, 
rather than render religious honors to his son-in-law. 

The second reign of Mustapha I. commenced by those 
oscillations and those reactions which agitate the mind of a 
people or of a soldiery after the triumph of great seditions. 
A few days after the installation of Mustapha, while this 
prince attended with his mother at a family festivity at the 


house of the grand vizier, Daoud, the soldiers trooped around 
the palace of Daoud and constrained him by their vocifera- 
tions to come down into the court and assign them reason for 
his crime. 

" Why," cried they to him, " hast thou killed against our 
will the Sultan Othman, whom we had intrusted to thy 
guard ? " • 

" I have killed him," replied the grand vizier, " by the 
orders of the master of the world, the Sultan Mustapha, our 
padischah." This response, which threw on the chimerical 
will of an idiot the fatality of the crime, silenced and 
appeared to satisfy for this day the soldiers. The shade of 
the Sultan imposed upon them still. But the following day 
they presented themselves in larger numbers on another pre- 
text, demanding with loud cries the heads which had escaped, 
by favor of the tumult, the day of the catastrophe of Oth- 
man. They were those of Omar, the preceptor bf Othman, 
of Ahmed, the caïmakam, of Nassouh-Pasha and some 
others, advisers, viziers or favorites of Othman. Daoud 
abandoned to them without difficulty all those heads to save 
his own. But flight and the inaccessible mountains of Asia 
saved the victims. 

The pages of the seraglio on their side, ashamed to serve 
a phantom prince, and in(^gnant at the murder of a Sultan 
of their own years, who flattered their pride and their ambi- 
tion, assassinated by night their governor, the chief of the 
white eunuchs, accused by them of having contributed to 
the deposition and the execution of Othman, their idol. 
They hung by the legs the body upon the Place of the Hip- 

" This eunuch meditated," they said, " to kill likewise, 
at the instigation of the Sultana Validé, and of Daoud, her 
son-in-law, the young princes still living, brothers of Othman 
II., nephews of Mustapha." The spahis and the Janissaries, 
agitated by the pages, assembled anew to summon Daoud to 
answer on his head for the life of those youths, reserved per- 
haps for the throne. The new mufti, named Yahya, con- 
vinced the Sultana Validé of the unanimous unpopularity of 
Daoud, upon whom recoiled perpetually and justly the blood 
of his victim. 

Daoud, attacked by all, even by his accomplices, and ill 
sustained by his mother-in-law, who saw the empire tottering 
in his hands, ceded the supreme dignity to Mere-Housseïn, 


former cook of the seraglio, become, by the sport of fortune, 
general of the army of Hungary, and governor of Egypt. 
The firmness that was expected of him against the incessant 
seditions, failed, through his complicity m the murder of 
Othman. One day, as he was distributing the pay to the 
troops, a soldier rushed upon him, sabre in hand, crying : 
" What have you done with the Sultan Othman ? " It was 
the cry of remorse of the soldiers and of the people, break- 
ing forth in an individual voice. This remorse was mount- 
ing to fury. The avenging soldier struck, slightly and at ran- 
dom with his sabre, Housseïn and several of the officers of his 
retinue, before falling himself beneath the blows of the chi- 
aoox and the muezzins. 

This tumult did but excite another. The grand vizier, 
to escape from the sedition of the troops, resolved to send 
them, under pretext of war, to a distance from the capital 
He began by removing the aga of the Janissaries, Dervish- 
Pasha, a turbulent man, whom we have seen on the day of 
the fall of Othman, accompanying the car as groom of Mus- 
tapha to the old seraglio. The grand vizier, to disguise this 
exile, made Dervish governor of Caramania. An imperial 
bark transported him to the port of Moudania on the Asi- 
atic coast of the Propontis. 

The Janissaries, uneasy at the disappearance of their 
aga, and pretending that he had been drowned in the pas- 
sage, rushed tumultuously with arms in hand, into the courts 
of the seraglio, demanding clamorously the removal and the 
punishment of the grand vizier. The Sultana Validé, at- 
tracted by these cries from the harem, dictated to her terri- 
fied son a suppliant katti-scherif, addressed by this prince to 
the soldiers : "Appoint grand vizier Daoud- Pasha, Gourdje 
Mohammed-Pasha, or Lefkeli Mustapha-Pasha, I care not 
which ; he whom you shall choose will be my choice." 

This sftrvile katti-scherif augmented the embarrassment 
and the fury of the troops. They felt incapable of obeying, 
but still more incapable of governmg. Their cries redoubled. 
The Sultana Validé, who had dictated this katti-scherif to 
her son, tried what her presence could a second time effect 
upon the mind of the troops. She came forth covered with 
a transparent veil from the harem, and presented herself as 
suppliant to the soldiers. The unusual sight of a woman of 
whom the beauty and the tears were half disclosed through 
the Indian muslin spread over her features, respect for the 


mother of their emperor, the reoollection of the energy whid 
she had displayed to save and to crown her son, devoid of 
reason on the day of the revolution, made the factionists fall 
at her feet They tore the katti-scherif whereby the Saltan 
resigned to them the right of appointing a grand vizier, and 
cried to her that they would obey him who would be chosen 
freely by the padischah. 

Mustapha-Xefkeli, brother of the nurse of the Sultan, 
was appointed by the influence of his mother. Scarce had 
he governed a few days than a new revolt arose against him, 
under pretext that he had given the highest dignities of the 
church to a driver of asses and a musician, his friends. A 
third grand vizier in the space of three months, Gbordji- 
Mohainmed, received the seals. 


The public authority discredited at its source, being no 
more upheld by respect, could no longer be so by terror. 
The puerilities of Mustapha I., in spite of the mystery with 
which the seraglio endeavored to conceal them, became 
known throughout Constantinople. At one time Mustapha, 
escaping from his guardians, would run from kiodk to kiosk 
in the gardens of the palace, invoking, with loud cries 0th- 
man to come and rid him of the weight of the government, 
forgetting, like the emperor Claudian demanding back his 
wife, that he had signed himself the warrant for the murder 
of his nephew. At another time he would enter on horse- 
back his barge, and imagine he was thus traversing the sea. 
Sometimes he thought himself a prophet and favored by 
celestial revelations, which complaisance and adulation used 
to verify to gratify him. The credulous multitude, inclined 
to venerate the weakness of the intellect as a sign of inno- 
cence, a favor of heaven, used to admire in these revelations 
the finger of God upon the inspired idiot. 

The sheiks of the mosques availed themselves of this 
prestige of the pretended inspirations of Mustapha, to edify 
the ûiithful and to accredit the idea of his sanctity. " He 
shuts himself up whole weeks to weep and to pray in his 
apartments," said they, in the pulpits; "he beholds his 
nephew, Othman, transfigured into paradise, and crowned 
with an imperbhable diadem. Pray for your saintly padis- 


tbahy that God may console his sufferings and bless his 
tears." The people wept and prayed.* 

The grand vizier, in order to gratify the sheiks of the 
mosques, having published a severe interdict against the sale 
of wine to the troops in the taverns, was dismissed amid the 
cries of the soldiers. Dervish-Pasha, before appointed and 
deposed, as has been seen above, was named anew and de- 
posed a second time. A eunuch, named Mohammed, grown 
old in the high functions of the government, succeeded to 
Dervish. There were fair hopes of a man broken to the 
business, and who had never mingled in any of the factions 
of court or barrack which rent ^e state. The people of 
Constantinople, weary of barrack anarchies, were favorable 
to the eunuch who was determined to repress them. They 
menaced the favorite of the Janissaries, Dervish-Pasha, with 
obliging him to give an account of his wealth. 

The Janissaries, in their first fermentation against the 
eunuch, were hooted by the multitude : " You tremble for 
your falconer^'* said the people to the soldiers, (it was the 
surname of Dervish, a trainer of falcons before his fortune,) 
*' and you have deserted, like coward mutes, your padisohah, 
Othman, of whom you were eating the bread and the salt, 
and who had been delivered to you as a sacred deposit in 
your barrack by us and by the present Sultan, Mustapha." 
The Janissaries, depopularized by their ingratitude and their 
sacrilege against Othman, knew not what to answer. Al- 
ready, under pretext of avenging Othman, governors, gen- 
erals and pashas, declared themselves absolved from obedi- 
ence to the Porte, and swore to make the Janissaries atone 
for the murder of the young Sultan. Of this number were 
Yousouf-Pasha, Governor of Tripoli in Syria, and Abaza- 
Pasha, Governor of Brzeroum. 

Yousouf was a Turcoman, raised to power by cunning, 
confirmed in it by crime, to whom the luck of his misdeeds 
had given the daring to commit greater. He had long since 
driven the Janissaries from his province, and had enrolled 
in their stead bands of seghbans, a local and personal mili- 
tia, a tool, accomplice, and victim by turns of his ferocious 
executions. Such an enemy, armed with a grievance so real 
and so national as the murder of a Sultan, was formidable to 
the Janissaries. 

* It seems, then, that tiie priests and people are the same in Turkey 
as the world over. — TrasMlator, 


Abaza, who took his name from his tribe, tke AWmi «f 
the Black Sea, neighbors of the Circassians, wa) a pri(M>B«r 
become slave of the old grand vizier, Mourad, Tftnqnisher of 
the Persians. Kemarked for his courage on the fleet of 
Khalil, the capitan-pasha, Abaza, rose from grade to grade, 
and finally to the government of Merasch. An enemy of the 
Janissaries, like Yousouf, he was of the number of the aen- 
erals who levied, in Syria and in MesopotaiBiai well disci- 
plined militias, and whom Othman II. proposed to join, to 
deliver himself from the yoke of the Janissaries, when the 
discovery of this idea cost him his throne and his life. 

His declared revolt caused the outbreak in Constanti- 
nople of a new sedition against the eunuch Mohammed* 
The capitan-pasha, Khalil, and the grand vizier murmured : 
" The Janissaries are the instigators and tlni sccrtjt t^ap* 

Ïorters of the rebel; Housseïn has given him bis daoi^hter." 
tut these murmurs, which found no echo in the muHitude, 
died away before the impassibility of Molninimed, Tb« 
shame and the execration of their crime, reproved by all good 
Mussulmans, began to weigh so heavily upon the i^irit of 
the soldiers, that they sought to discharge thcînsolvee of it 
at any cost. The spahis cast it upon the Janissaries^, tbt) 
Janissaries upon Daoud, son-in law of the SuUan% Daoud 
upon Mustapha I. ; no one wished to bear any loo^r the 
responsibility of this blood which cried for vengeance îa 
every soul. 

It is honorable to human nature to see a nation like a 
great criminal, tormented by the remorse of an unpunished 
assassination, and demanding, so to say, of divine* justice, 
to accord it either the pardon or the expiation of innocefitt 


The spahis, not being able to tolerate the blame or even 
the silence of their officers, who reproached them wîth tiieir 
complicity in the death of Othman, separated their cause 
from the Janissaries their companions. They asaenibled of 
themselves in the mosque of the Hippodrome, where the 
drama of the death of the nephew and of the cort^natiou of 
the idiot was accomplished before their eyes, and had drawn 
up by their secretary a petition to the Sultan, Mustapha I., 
conceived in this wise : ** If the padischah has really or- 



iered tb« mvrdçr of tlie Sultan Othman, let liîm say so, and 
let him purge our honor from the calumnies of the people." 
• This demand, without an answer for several days, encour- 
Aged the people, the sheiks and the oulemas, to demand still 
loader, not now to stigmatize, but to chastise the revolt 
against Othman. The spahis, to further exculpate themselves, 
called with loud clamors for the investigation and the judg- 
ment of the murderers. " Deliver us the assassin," said they 
to i^ evleÉias, ^^ and we will do him justice ourselves." 

The Sultan, summoned by the cUimoring of the spahis 
to declare the truth, replied by a laconic katti-scherif, which 
repudiated the death of his nephew. " I have never said to 
nuy 013 e that the Snltan Othman should be put to death," 
B^i the 8ult»û JMustapha in this k^tti-scherif ; ^^ Daoud has 
lied. If the murderers live still, they must expiate their 

This express disavowal of Mustapha, in testifying that he 
himself waa indignant at the murder to which he owed the 
throne J left to the Janissaries and the spahis, in order to 
appease the people j but the part of executing vengeance upon 
tkelr own miadeeda. Tiiey affected more zeal and more fury 
than the people themselves in the investigation and the exter- 
mination of the regicides. They diffused themselves sword in 
hari] dur m g tht night through the streets, pursuing every 
wiieri^ thoȉ whose name was at all connected with the mur- 
der of Othman. 

The chief of the djebedjis, one of the four assassins who 
had strangled the young prince in the prison of the Seven 
Towers, was torn from his house, dragged to the border of 
the same fountain where the imfortunate Othman had asked 
in vain for some water to drink in marching to death. His 
head was cut off on the brink of the fountain, as if the blood 
thus shed was meant to expiate the drop of water refused so 


The streets rung for two days with cries of vengeance 
against Daoud-Pasha, the most guilty, the most powerful, 
and the most ferocious of the authors of the revolution. He 
had succeeded in escaping by the gate of his harem, and con- 
cealing himself in the suburb of Aïoub, in the humble resi- 
dence of a spahi grateful for some favors. The pertinacious 
Vol. III.— 9 


search of the soldiers disoorered him at last on the third day 
crouched under the horse's litter in the stable of the 
trooper. His garments were stript from his body, he was 
robed in derision with a mass of rags covered with dirt, and 
hoisted on a dung-cart to be conducted, through the hooting 
streets, to the prison of the Seven Towers, the scene of his 
crime, destined to be that of his punishment. 

Kalender-Oghli, the third of the assassins of Othman 
become chief of the police of the capital, under the viiiership 
of his accomplice, Daoud, was àrs^^goà with the same igno- 
miny to the Seven Towers. The feigned fury of the troops 
and the real anger of the people appeared a moment to be 
satisfied by these expiations ; they reflected more than befit- 
ted the security of the throne, not upon the innocent Mus- 
tapha I. but upon the reigning Sultana, his mother. 

The aga of the Janissaries, at the secret instigation of 
the harem, deeply interested in saving Daoud, assembled his 
soldiers in the mosque, and feigning to appeal to their mili- 
tary generosity : " Comrades,!' said he to them, '^ now you 
are satisfied ; Daoud-Pasha is imprisoned, his ùAe is in the 
hands of the padischah, his proper judge and master ; pro- 
mise to utter no more imprecations against Daoud, and no 
more to agitate the city with cries of death against any body." 

The soldiers, deceived by this semblance of magnanimity, 
made the promise and returned in silence to their barrack. 


During this cessation of the soldiers, the Sultana Validé 
and her daughter, the Sultana, wife of Daoud, conspired 
with all the artifices of two women, drawing by handfuls 
from the public treasury, to save a son-in-law and a husband. 
They did not disguise from themselves that the punishment 
of their instrument would be the prologue to their own exe- 
cution. Their largesses and their promises succeeded in 
creating during the night a party for Daoud. The. execu- 
tioner himself, won over by their gold, engaged to have the 
execution conducted with sufficient slowness to give the 
liberators of Daoud time to muster and to rescue him. 

The following day, in fact, at the moment when Daoud, 
conducted from the Seven Towers before the divan, heard 
his sentence of death, and was carried by the executioners 
in his rags of the preceding day to die before the fountain. 


bespattered with the blood of the chief of the djebedjis, 
the executioner left him more time than was accorded to 
convicts for prayer. 

Daoud, kneeling without a turban, the naked sabre of 
the headsman already brandished over his head, drew all of 
a sadden from his bosom and read aloud the katti-scherif of 
Mustapha, which ordered him to murder Othman. This 
afterhand katti-scherif had been doubtless surprised from 
the Sultan and slipped by trusty hands into those of Daoud, to 
serve as his justification at. the last moment. The Janissa- 
ries in the confidence of those two women, affected to declare 
themselves fully satisfied, covered the reading with acclama- 
tions, pushed aside the executioners, tore ofif I)aoud from the 
fountain, brought him a horse richly caparisoned, and led 
him in triumph to the mosque, the forum of so many tragic 
vicissitudes of fortune. The people, as fickle in the Con- 
stantinople of the Ottomans as in the Byzantium of the 
Greeks, saluted with hurrahs this sudden turn in the fate of 
Daoud, and followed the tumultuous current created by the 

All pressed around the horse of the ex-vizier, boasting 
of having contributed to his safety, and asking him to throw 
them a fragment of the rags he had on, for the purpose of 
being able to present it to him in the day of his power, and to 
claim the price of the life whieh they had rendered him by 
their sedition. In passing in front of the bakery of the spahis, 
one of these soldiers gave him his turban, another his c^tan, 
a third his horse and his arms.* On entering the peristyle 
of the mosque, the Janissaries, still more interested than 
the spahis in the impunity of their accomplice, stripped him of 
his chance garments, brought more sumptuous %nes, and 
placed upon his head the golden-fringed turban of the viz- 
iers. Daoud, invested tumultuously with this supreme dig- 
nity by the vociferations of a hancLful of rebels, recognized 
the exigencies of the soldiery, by distributing in advance to 
the most obsequious, the places of kiaya, or chief of the 
ohiaoux, of viziers, with military fiefs and largesses. 

But the hour which he thus employed in confirming his 
power instead of employing it to assure his safety by flight, 
was turned already against him. The spahis became indig- 

« But he was, according to the antbor, already on horseback, and a 
hone " richly caparisoned," to boot. — Traruhtor, 


nant at the conduct of the Janissaries ; the people, at the 
conduct of both the military flEU^tions. The yenal popu- 
larity, won a moment at the price of gold by the two Sul- 
tanas for their favorite, crumbled before the crushing unpop- 
ularity of the unpunished and now triumphant assassin of 
Othman II. The seraglio was surrounded to demand from 
the grand vizier vengeance upon this mere derision of the 
laws. The grand chamberlain of the palace, Damadi- Ahmed, 
offered himself to the eunuch to go with the bostandjis and 
precipitate Daoud from his insolent triumph. Attended by 
some thousands of bostandjis and capidjis, he mardied with- 
out hesitation to the mosque amid the encouragements of the 
multitude. He scattered, By his mere presence, the Janissaries, 
the spahis and the populace that escorted Daoud ; he wrested 
from them without resistance their idol, and placing Daoud 
on the same car in which the latter conducted his victim, 
Othman, to the Seven Towers, he led him back into his pri- 
son and had him beheaded, as also KalenderOghli, his 
accomplice, in the same apartment and on the same spot where 
these two miscreants had thrown down, strangled and muti- 
lated their padischah. 

Thus, the reprisal of the same place, as the reprisal of 
the same punishment, serves once more to attest that ven- 
geance, intelligent and inevitable, which punishes the murder 
of the victim by that of the murderer. 

Their bodies were dragged by the legs into the sea. 


The old eunuch, Mahomed, who regarded with a forced 
passivenegs these vengeances of public opinion, accepted them 
for want of being able to avert them. He was even con- 
strained to employ the authority of Mustapha I. in displac- 
ing, in banishing and in executing the chief fomentbrs of the 
revolution which had placed Mustapha upon the throne. 
His rival, Mére-Housseïn, secretly urged the people and 
the troops to demand more bloody reparations of the death 
of Othman. It was with him a means of getting himself 
popular in the empire, of vilifying the eunuch and the Sul- 
tana Validé, and of remounting on their ruin to the power 
which he had held but for so few days. 

" The empire," he. was wont to say aloud to his partisans, 
making allusions to the age of the eunuch, who was eighty 


years, and to the ascendant of the Soltana Validé over the 
old man, ** is governed by two old women and by an idiot. 
Is it wonderful that every thing is going to ruin ? " 

An Albanian aga, named Suleiman, an instrument of 
Mére-Housseïn, undertook to stimulate this fermentation of 
discontent in the troops, and to push the murmurs to the ex- 
treme of sedition. The officers of the Janissaries and of 
the spahis put their heads together to wrest by force the 
government from those decrepit hands. Their soldiers, 
secretly encouraged by them, assailed, the 5th February, at 
daybreak, the divan, and thus addressed the old vizier : " It 
is you,*' said they, " ^ho give up our brethren and our officers 
to the executioner; we want you no longer; we desire 
to be governed by vigorous ministers Retire instantly, 
lay down voluntarily a power for which your age and your 
mutilation unfit you f otherwise our sabres will lay you on 
the steps of the divan, and our hands cast your minced mem- 
bers into the waves where you have thrown Daoud." 


The old man^ abandoned by all, and even by the Sultana, 
gave up the seals into the hands of the rebels, who trans- 
ferred them to Mére-Housseïn, their instigator. Five hun- 
dred sugar-loaves to the soldiers, caftans of honor to the 
chiefs of the revolt, and two hundred thousand ducats to the 
Janissaries, recompensed, in the seraglio itself, the insurrec- 
tion that thus dishonored it. Mére-Housseïn let the eunuch 
retire in peace into the harem, but he banished all the men 
who gave him umbrage by their talents and could aspire to 
the rank of grand vizier. 


Mere did not scruple to attach to him the favor of this 
soldiery by the same, corruptions and the Same licenses by 
which he had purchased it. He had the floor of their 
mosque covered with rich carpets of new silk ; he assembled, 
on the square of the meat-market, the head cooks of the 
messes, who formed under this title the staff of each regi- 
ment : " Comrades," said he to them, " pray for the direction 
of the rei^n of our happy padisohah, and Keep yourselves in 
peace; t&e wherever you please, your meats, your wax 


li^ts, your wood, and all that you find naeessary : thank 
God, the padischah is sufficiently rich to treat lib^ally his 

The Janissaries cheered the yizier, and carried their 
insatiable exiffenoies quite as far as the want of popularity of 
their accomplice pusned. his complaisance towards them. 
All was indiscipline, haphazard, and pillage of the shops and 
the tareasury of the capital Public opinion^ enslayed but in- 
dignant, revealed itself by multiplied conflagrations in Oo&- 
stantinople, anonymous notices, which substituted fire for the 
voice, and insurrected the people by terror and despair. 


Abaza-Pasha, revolted at Tripoli, took advantage of 
these agitations of the capital, to advance securely with hm 
army of avengers of Othman II., into Caramania. Master 
of Siwas and of Angora, he procured the assassination of 
Yousouf-Pasha, revoked in the same cause at Merasch, under 
pretence that this colleague meditated reconciliation with the 
regicides. At Cesarea, where he entered a victor, the sheiks 
received him as a libeifator : " Fear nothing," said they to 
him before the people, "fortune is on thy* side. Thou art 
the envoy of God, He gives thee power to deliver the Mus- 
sulmans from the oppression of the tyrant Janissaries." 

Abaza, at the head of sixty thousand men, confiscated 
every where the property of the Janissaries to defray the pay 
of his troops. The enemy and declared executioner of this 
soldiery, wherever on his march he discovered a Janissary, 
he had him beheaded after having horseshoes nailed to hia 
heels, in sign of assimilation to brutes. Master of entire 
Anatolia, he blockaded for three months back the capital 
city of Broussa. 

This unpunished dismemberment of the empire by a rebel 
foreigner, of a race deemed barbarous, the fires that devoured 
nightly whole districts of the city, the insolence of the sol- 
diers, the emulation of license between the ^ahis and the 
Janissaries, the imbecility of the Sultan, the incapacity of 
his mother, a woman who had but the energy and the mobility 
of her passions, but no solidity of judgment, the lurking 
intrigues of the Sultana Koesim, in the old seraglio, who 
plotted to substitute her son Mourad to the son of the Validé 
upon the throne, kept the public in a perpetual anguisL 


1%e otilemas, indignant at the excesses of the military domi- 
nation, summoned the mufti to preside over their meeting in 
the mosque of Saint Sophia, to deliberate upon the public 
danger. The mufti, to augment the popular fermentation, 
replied, that, " as long as Mére-Housseïn was grand vizier, 
no remedy was applicable to the wounds of the nation ; that 
he was going to see the Sultan to solicit the deposition of 
this impious minister and corrupter of the troops, and that 
he wovdd appear no more before them until he had ob- 
tained it." 

The spahis, apprised of the courageous course of the 
mufbi, assembled at the gates to hinder him, by threats of 
death, from going to the seraglio. One of them, son of a 
cutler, cried to his comrades : ^^ Do not let him out, or 
else you will all be massacred." The mufbi brayed their 
threats and their arms ; he went up, under the escort of 
patriot Mussulmans, to the seraglio. Mére-Housseïn, dread- 
ing this collection of armed men, surrounded himself with 
bribed troops in the palace of the aga of the Janissaries. 
From there he ordered the oulemas of Saint-Sophia to dis- 
perse. The oulemas, strong in number, in right, in the 
moral support of all good Mussidmans, received his messen- 
gers with imprecations aiîd turned them out of the mosque. 
Some ventured to go in deputation to the barrack of the 
Janissaries to make a last appeal of patriotism to the heart 
of the soldiers : '< The Sultan Mustapha," said they, with 
tears in their eyes, to the soldiers, " is destitute of reason ; 
the government b conducted or rather torn in his name at 
the caprice of the harem or of the adventurers who sway it ; 
ruin is upon us ; let us call legally another princ^ to the 
throne ; what say you of it ? " The soldiers, separated at 
this moment from their chiefs, interrogate each other with 
the eye and confess the calamities of the country. " What- 
ever side," replied they at last, " our masters, the oulemas, 
take, we will follow them." 


The oulemas, satisfied with this deference of the soldiers, 
returned to Saint-Sophia to give tiieir colleagues assurance 
as to the disposition of the troops, and to pursue their de- 
liberation on the evils of theempire. Mére-Housseïn sends 
them in vain other negotiators to persuade them to retire. 


They come out in a body «round Saint-Sophia with the turban 
of Akhschemseddin, one of the martyrs of Islam who was 
buried in the mosque of Aïoub. They unroll this sacred 
turban to make it a banner. All the sheiks of the other 
mosques of Constantinople brins their standards to Saint* 
Sophia to join with that of Akhschemseddin. The people 
salute with acclamations the mosque of Saint-Sophia adorned 
with those thousand streaming standards: but arms are 
wanting, and night falls without a declaration of the troops 
reconquered by the liberalities of the grand vizier and the 

Mére-Housseïn launched on Saint-Sophia a scum of Jan^ 
issaries and of Albanians under the orders of a tschaousch of 
Caramania. They broke in the doors, massacred some oulé- 
mas, and threw their bodies in a sewer to conceal the eyidenoes 
of their crime. A dervish who had addressed the people in 
favor of the oulemas was hanged the following day. The 
civic consternation hid itself before the tyranny of the 
soldiers ; but the oulemas desired in secret the success of 
Abaza, and called him by their emissaries to deliver Oon- 


Meanwhile the grand vizier, uneasy at the immobility of 
the spahis, who were separating their cause from that of 
the Janissaries, and who had appeared to tamper in the civic 
insurrection of the oulemas, resolved to exterminate the 
spahis. His plan, known only to some of his confidants, 
consisted in assembling them after the fêtes of Beïram in a 
court of the seraglio under pretext of receiving their pay, 
and in having them shot down from the windows and the 
port-holes by his Albanians. 

An accident caused the plot to transpire. During the 
fêtes of the Beïram, the defterdar of the grand vizier came 
to seat himself upon the bench of one of the shops of the 
covered bazar, to see defile in front the processions. Some 
soldiers of the corps of the spahis dared to dispute with him 
the place. "Are we not," said they to him insolently, " the 
fEkVorites of the padischah, and thus entitled to take the 
privileged places wherever we choose V " " Take the place, 
then," replied bitterly the imprudent defterdar ; " but after 
the festivals you will have justice." 


Thîs mdiscretion, reported from barrack to barrack, ex- 
oited with anxiety and with anger the spahis. They ran in 
arms to the divan of the grand vizier. ** You meditate our 
destruction/* cried they to him, " but we on our part want 
your head." The seraglio, inundated with their cohorts, re* 
sounded with their imprecations. The Sultana Validé con* 
jured Mére*Housseïn to yield to necessity and to appease the 
tumult by retiring. " No, no," said he, " I have received the 
government from the hands of the Janissaries, and I will 
fflve it up into their hands only when the Janissaries shall 
demand it." He absconded from the seraglio and went to 
place himself, like Hassan the Fruiterer y under the protec- 
tion of the Janissaries in their barrack. These soldiers, 
flattered by his confidence in them, and reigning, in fact, 
through him, received him with cries of fidelity. Mere* 
Housseïn retired into the mosque. 

Meanwhile, in the absence of the aga of the Janissaries, 
their kyaya or second general represented to the soldiers 
'^ the danger of sustaining by arms against the armed spahis 
a vizier repudiated by the majority of the people and of the 
troops, and of compromising the domination of the army 
over the seraglio by setting one moiety of the troops to fight 
the other, in the single interest of a vizier odious to the 
nation. Is it not better," said to them the kyaya Beïram, 
" that you should come to an amicable understanding with 
your brothers, the spahis, to choose together a vizier impar- 
tial between the two corps ? " 

This advice prevailed. The Janissaries and the spahis, 
admitted in equal number into a barrack deliberation, deposed 
in concert Mére-Housseïn. The seals, delivered by this 
minister into the hands of the mufti, were carried in a silk 
handkerchief to the Sultan. The troops designated as an 
impartial vizier an officer named Ali tne Archer^ from the 
name of his early profession. 

Ali the Archer, directed by the mufti and the oulemas, 
popular in the multitude, all-powerful by the combined elec- 
tion of the Janissaries and the spahis, convoked the same 
evening the judges of the army, the mufti, the viziers, the 
generals, the imans, the sheiks of the mosques — the orffans 
religious, legal and military, of the Osmanlis — and set them 
to deliberate upon the public peril. 

The deposition of the Sultan Mustapha I. and the procla- 
mation of prince Mourad or Amurath IV., a child of eleven 
Vol. III.— 9* 


years, the eldest of the snryiying sons of Aclunet I , were 
voted unanimously in the very precincts of the palace of Uio 
Sultan and almost in his presence. The morning was not 
awaited to take off the new Sultan from tàe harem of his 
mgther, the Sultana E^aesim, and to salute him on the throne 
padischah of the Ottomans. 

It of tllose pacific revolutions wherein evident 
necessity justifies unanimous resolution, and where the pat- 
riotism of all soars superior witiiout opposition and without 
crime to the ambitions and the intrigues of a small minority. 
Nature had deposed Mustapha in creating him. The soldiers 
themselves acknowledged for the first time with a remnant of 
shame that the calamities of the country ought not to be to 
them an opportunity of extorting money, and they renounced 
the ratifications habitual on the change of sovereign. 

Mustapha I., his mother, his wives and his slaves, returned 
to the old seraglio. 

Never did infant prince receive the empire in a more 
complete degradation of glory, of order, oùà of force. The 
Persians had coi^uered seven provinces and a capital, Bag- 
dad, from the Turks; Abaza possessed entire Asia; ihe 
anarchy of the soldiery possessed the rest The principle 
of hereditary monarchy had, in three rei^s, sapped the very 
foundations of the monarchy : this principle had^ given it in 
thirty years two minors and an imbecile ; it was now going 
to give it a tyrant.* 

* It is not properly the principle of inheritance that gave those evils, 
it was rather the opposite principle of election, nsnrped by the soldiery. 
Had the sane broth^ of Achmet L been left, as that principle required, 
to inherit, or his son Othman not been deposed by the re-ele^ihn oi an 
idiot, both the evils which the anther speaks of had been avoided in 
point of fact. As to the contrast between the two principles, it is but 
poetry, if not qnite pnerility. There is no abtolute preference between 
these processes of government, unless it be that one is fitter for a more 
advanced civilization. But then it .would be, for this very reason, the 
more unfit for a less forward people, and then the less preferable rela- 
tively. Lamartine does not dream of asking himself whether, with an 
openly élective monarchy, the Ottoman empire could have existed a single 
decade ; he, on the contrary, commends election at the very moment 
when its parM exercise hat brought, according to his own narrative, 
this empire to the verge of ruin \^~TranskUor, 



Thb reign of a child could be for a long time but the reign 
of his mother. The Sultana Koesim, mother of Amurath 
IV., a woman accustomed to govern under Ahmed I., still 
young and beautiful, bound by affection or interest to the 
eminent men of the empire, penetrating in intellect, prudent 
in understanding, ambitious, if not by nature at least by 
situation, had the adroitness, from the recesses of the old 
seraglio, to save the life of her son and to prepare his advent 
to the throne. The Sultana Validé, mother of Mustapha I., 
intimidated by the ascendant of the Sultana Koesim, over 
the divan and the people, had been deterred from the mur- 
der, often proposed, of ker rival and of Amurath. The 
murder of Othman II. had excited too much unpopularity 
and too much horror against her to add to it the murder of 
other sons of Ahmed. The Ottomans would not have par- 
doned her for cutting up by the roots, in favor of a preca- 
rious and imbecile prince, the imperial dynasty; it was to 
these scruples that Amurath had owed his life, and that he 
was come now to owe the throne. The hand of his mother, 
who had raised him to it, was alone capable of sustaining 

Amurath IV. was but a child; but he was besides a 
sickly child. His precocious intelligence, nurtured in the 
retirement of the old seraglio by an assiduous mother, was 
not obscured, but eclipsed by a natal infirmity, inherited 
from his father. Some ffits of epilepsy foreboded him a short 
life and a reign as convulsive as the spasms of his soul. His 
oval countenance, pale, melancholy, but of a pensive and 
penetrating expression, recalled the features of the Sultana 
Koesim, surnamed Mahpetker, or the splendor of the moon ; 
his hair and eyebrows were dark like those of that Persian 


slave ; his eyes large, well-cut and of a sombre azure, were 
pleasing to look upon in repose ; but the least emotion of 
the passions stirred up in the depths of his soul, sent to the 
eyes, says the Venetian narrative, a character of aberration 
and of menace that betokened premature tyranny. His 
mother, whom all the annalists of the time represent as 
possessing a great soul and a great character, had accustomed 
him from the cradle to domineer and to will with the abso- 
lute and quick capriciousness of a woman. Brought up 
during twelve years between the sceptre and the bow-string, 
beneath the terror of a death perpetually undecided over his 
head, uncertain whether he was going to be the victim or the 
executioner, he became suspicious like the one, ferocious 
like the other. This education under the dagger seemed 
admirably contrived to form a sanguinary prince. It had 
produced its fruits, and this Turkbh Agrippina produced her 


The ceremony of his circumcision followed immediately 
that of his religious investiture with the sword of Othman 
in the mosque of Aïoub. His mother dictated to him the 
names of the viziers to whom he iias to commit the govern- 
ment until the period when he could exercise it suitably 
himself. Keman-Kesch Ali-Pasha, the author of the revo- 
lution which had just raised her from the recesses of the old 
seraglio to the side of the throne of her son, was maintained 
by her in the functions of grand vizier. No man was more 
interested than Ali-Pasha in upholding the work of his own 

Ali, who had been so courageously seconded in this 
popular movement by the muffci Yahya, made haste to be 
ungrateful, for fear of being enslaved to the moral authority 
of his accomplice: he deposed the mufti and exiled him 
from the capital. He appointed in his place the former 
mufti Ezaad, grandson of Seadeddin, a man esteemed for 
his virtues, but whose elevation was only meant to color the 
injustice done Yahya, and to prepare that dignity for Bostan- 
zadé, the father-in-law of Ali. He caused to be arrested and 
conducted to the Seven Towers the preceding grand vizier 
Gourdji-Mohammed and the capitan-pasha Khalil, under the 
factitious accusation of a state plot against the young Sultan. 


Thdr 8ale crime was to impede bis ambition in ibe divuu 
Tbe kiaja of the Janissaries, Beiram, who had harangued 
the soldiers in the barrack against Mére-Honsseïn and thus 
prepared the coalition of the Janissaries and tbe spahis in 
favor of the dethronement of Mustapha I., was appointed 
aga of the former body and received in marriage the sister 
of tbe Sultan. The capitan-pasha Redjeb espoused another. 
Hafiz, governor of Diarbekir and a man of great promise, 
bad already married tbe eldest of the three sisters. 


The accession of Amuratb lY. presented a sad coinci- 
dence not only with the revolt of Abaza in Anatolia, but 
also with the ùl\ of Bagdad into the hands of the Persians. 

Schab- Abbas, as worthy of the name of Great with the 
Persians as Soliman II. with the Turks, had continued to 
negotiate, to reign and to fight from his infancy, until all the 
provinces of ancient Persia, dismembered under his prede- 
cessors, were restored, reconquered and pacified throughout 
the vast expanse of tbe empire. Wiser than Genghis Khan 
and than Timour, instead of wasting the forces of his people 
on precarious and hazardous invasions of India or Turkey, 
Schab- Abbas set himself to consolidate tbe pristine nucleus 
of Persia, judging with the sagacity of a statesman that pos- 
terity does not award enduring glory to adventurers but to 
founders, and does not measure the fame of a great man by 
the spaoe he has overrun, but by the empire which he has 
left organized behind him. 

His last wars against the Turks and against the Ouzbeks 
had been but wars of defence to re-seize Tauris and Bagdad 
conquered by the Ottomans from his territory. After each 
campaign or each victory, he had listened to or made himself 
propositions of truce or of peace. His ambassadors had 
quite recently again brought to Mustapha I. presents worthy 
^ the sumptuousness of tbe East. But these ambassadors 
themselves bad been able to take an estimate of the imbe- 
cility of the Sultan, tbe anarchy of tbe seraglio, the un- 
checked revolt of Abaza, the decadence of tbe empire, and 
the facility of detaching from it a fragment additional. At 
the same time Schab- Abbas was patient, like men who feel 
that the tide of things is setting in in tbe direction of their 
fortune. He did not declare formal hostilities against a peo- 

206 HiiTOBT or tubkst. 

pie whose ealamities were fighting for hhn more effeotoallj 
tiian he eoiild. He had the §rt of waiting — ^this dirinatory 
secret of minds who let events mature themselves. 

His last victory over the Turks for the recovery of 
Tauris was well nigh having cost him his life. At nightfall, 
while his victorious soldiers were leading mai»es of prison* 
ers Turkish and Kurdish into his camp, he had seated him- 
self to drink sherbet upon a hillock of the field of battle in 
front of which were passing the captives. He perceived 
among their number a warrior of colossal stature conducted 
by a young Persian soldier scarce out of his boyhood. He 
ordered the prisoner before him, and questioned him as to 
his nation and family. " I am," replied the chained giant, 
" of the race of the Kurds and of the tribe of the Moukris." 

At this response, Schah- Abbas remembering that he had 
among his own generals a Kurd refugee from this nation and 
a deadly enemy of this tribe, ordered to deliver the prisoner 
of war into the hands of his compatriot named Boustem- 
beg, to be made by him his slave or his guest according to 
his pleasure. But Boustem-Beg, who was at this moment 
seated among the guests of the king, refused nobly the pres- 
ent thus intended him. ^^ My honor, it is true," said he 
to Schah- Abbas, ^^ would demand that I take vengeance 
upon this enemy of my house ; but 1 have sworn never to 
take advantge of the weakness of an enemy disarmed, cap- 
tive and unfortunate, to satisfy the vengeance of my family." 

Schah- Abbas, at this moment fuddled by the wine which 
he had just drank and with a remnant of the wrath which 
animated him against the Kurds, forgot his usual magna- 
nimity and made a sign to behead the prisoner. At this 
gesture, the iron-muscled Kurd snaps by an effort the cords 
that handcuffed him, snatches a poniard from the cincture 
of one of the Persism chiefs, and rushes upon the king, with 
the purpose of dying at least in immolating the enemy of 
his race. In the confusion of this scuffle, the torches that 
lit the table fall and are eztin^ished; the warriors of 
Abbas start up to aid him ; but hands search at random for 
hands in the dark; swords cross swords; all daggers are 
uplifted, and none dares strike for fear of reaching uie heart 
of a friend in meaning to sacrifice an enemy. At last Abbas 
was heard to cry as he stru^led in the dust : '^ I hold his 
hand, I have wrested from mm the poniard ; strike without 
fear of hurting me." 


At these words, the servants and the gnests had pierced 
with a hundred dagger wounds the colossal Kurd, lying oa 
the ground upon the body of the king. The torches relit 
œchibit a commixture of blood and of wine upon the carpet 
of the tent Abbas, without losing any thing of his coolness, 
resumed his seat^ before the tent and continued throughout 
the night to driuk and to count the heads which his soldiers 
threw at his feet 

A short time after, he re-captured the island and the 
opulent port of Ormus from the Portuguese. An English 
ambassador, Dodmore Cotton, in the name of the East India 
Company, came with a retinue of gentlemen of his nation to 
congratulate him on this conquest and to conclude with Per- 
sia a treaty of commerce. These envoys relate, in their 
report to the East India Company, their sumptuous recep- 
tion at the audience of Abbsus the Great. 

" Sir Dodmore Cotton and the gentlemen accompanying 
him remained in an antechamber for some moments before 
being presented ; and instead of coffee, which is offered ordi- 
narily on similar occasions, they found before them a rich 
repast, served on dishes of gold, with a great abundance of 
wines that flowed from flasks of massive gold into goblets of 
the same metal. From this apartment they were conducted 
across two others which are represented to us as splendidly 
decorated, full of golden vases enriched with jewels and con- 
taining rose-water, flowers and wine. After crossing these 
apartments, they reached the grand hall of parade ; tib^ high 
oflcess of the crown were ranged all around, along the wall 
like so many statues ; none of them made the slightest move- 
ment, all was profound silence. Beautiful- boys, wearing 
brilliant turbans and embroidered robes, carried cups of 
wine and handed them to those who wished to drink. Abbas 
was arrayed with great simplicity in red cloth : he wore no 
ornament ; his sword-hilt idone was gilded. The principal 
magnates, who were seated at his side, were dressed with as 
little parade, and it was visible that the king, in the midst 
of that blaze of wealth and grandeur, affected simplicity. 
Perhaps his pretensions to the character of pontiff demanded 
that in pubUc he should show a personal contempt for the 
riches and vanities of earth. 

^^ The ambassador explained, through an interpreter, the 
object of his mission: it proposed a league with Persia 
against the Turks, and to obtain satisfaction for Sir Eobert 

208 mtfOBT or tubut. 

Shirley, an Eafflish gentleman in ihe semee of S4iali« 
Abbas, who had been insulted and pillaged by a Pereiaa 

^^ The response of the king," says the reoital, " was per« 
fectly gracious. He expressed his contempt for the Turks, 
promised to compel the sons of the deceased noble to render 
satisfaction to Shirley, and offered to reoeiye, erery year, 
English cloth in exchange for a thousand bales of silk which 
he would see delivered by his officers to British agents at 
Goura. Abbas, it is said, was much amused at the embar- 
rassment of Sir Podmore Gotten in striving to seat himself 
cross-legged according to the usage of the country. But 
wishing to please his guest, he called for a glass and drank 
to the health of the £ng of England : at the name of his 
sovereign, the ambassador rose and took off his hat ; Abbas 
smiled, lifting also his turban to show that he partook of the 
respect for the king of England. 

'^ The sole thought of this prince, at the height of the 
glory which he ascended to, was," continue the European 
ambassadors, '^ to pacify his dominions. His severity was not 
his character, but his policy. He knew that a despotic 
government can never be founded but upon a timid and com^ 
plete submission to the authority of the monarch. He suc« 
ceeded to perfection in attaining this end; and the long 
peace which he secured to Persia should be attributed above 
all to the wisdom of his government He labored more 
assiduously than any preceding sovereign for the améliora- 
tion and the well-being of his kingdom. He took the city 
of Ispahan as the capital of his empire ; and the population 
of this city Was nearly doubled during his reign. The 

fraud mosque, the magnificent palace of Ohehel-Setoon, the 
eautiful avenues and palaces called Char-Bagh or the " four 
gardens," the main bridge over the river Zainderood ; and 
several of the splendid palaces of the city and the suburbs 
were built by this prince. Mushed owed to him also the more 
important of its works. He had constructed, at immense 
cost, a causeway which crosses the whole of Mazenderan, and 
rendered thus this impassable region accessible to armies and 
travellers in all seasons of the year. He built bridges upon 
all the rivers of Persia ; and it is to the munificence of this 
prince that the traveller is indebted for finding every where, 
in this country, spacious and solid caravansaries. 

"He had fbur sons," adds this narrative, "whom he 


regarded with ddight w^ile they had not yet attained the 
aee of manhood, and shown those great and noble qualities 
which he should wish them as a father ; but when all Uhe 
wishes of his heart seemed satisfied, he could not bear to 
see the eyes of his subjects turned upon another than him- 
self. He entertained suspicions of the premature ambition 
of the eldest of the sons, named Sophi-Mirza." 

This prince, endowed with t^o heroism and the magna- 
nimity of his father, had, it was believed, conspired against 
the life of Schah- Abbas, through resentment of a punish- 
ment which the king had inflicted upon a favorite corrupter 
of the son. Abbas, like Constantino and Soliman, forgot 
that he was father, to remember only that he was judge and 
king. He confided his sorrow and his resolution to punish 
his son to one of his generals named Karatchy-Khan, van- 
quisher of the Turks and the most devoted of the supporters 
of the throne ; he besought him to undertake the execution 
of his son, as he had stricken down his enemies, since that 
unnatural son was meditating parricide. The aged Khan 
threw himself at the feet of his master and implored him to 
take his own life rather than to render it odious by forcing 
him to be the assassin of so generous a prince. 

Abbas did not press him farther ; but he soon found in 
Beh-Bood-Khan an instrument more disposed to serve him. 
This nobleman, as if in vengeance of a personal injury, slew 
the prince as he was getting on horseback in the very court 
of the palace and fled into the stables of the king. The 
monarch, under pretext of the respect he owed an ancient 
usage which rendered this asylum sacred, hindered the exe- 
cution of the assassin. If he allowed it, said he, it would 
be to prejudge the cause and to cast suspicion upon an inci- 
dent which needed to be cleared up : it was requisite to sus- 
pend prosecution until the son of Sophi-Mirza, who was still 
an infant, should be of age to demand vengeance for the 
blood of his father. But even this veil was presently with- 
drawn ; Beh-Bood-Khan came forth from his ayslum and 
was elevated to employments of distinction. Meanwhile, 
there is satisfaction in learning that this wretch met at last 
with the due reward of his infamy. 

Abbas, as soon as the crime had been committed, b.ecame 
a prey to the most torturing remorse. He sought occasions 
to put to death all those of his courtiers who had envenomed 
hifl soul against the son whom he wept, it was said, sincerely. 


Bat ha reierred for Beli-Bood an exeoution more cruel : he 
ordered this man so obedient to bring him the head of his 
own son. The rile sUye obeyed. At the moment when he 
presented to Abbas the head of the jaanft man, that prince^ 
with a bitter smile of contempt, asked him, what were his 
feelings ? " I am very unhappy, replied Beh-Bood. — ^* Thorn 
wilt 1^ happy, Beh-Bood," said Abbas, ^^ for ^on art ambi^ 
tioos and thy heart is now like to that of ihj master." 

Soon after the death of Sophi-Mina, his cniel fikther, 
still suspicious, caused the eyes to be torn out of his two 
other sons. If we may trust a contemporaneous writer and 
a Frenchman, the fate of one of these prinoes was attended 
with most tragic circumstances. This young man, whose 
name was Khoda-Bendeh, was as distinguished for courage 
and talent as his eldest brother ; but he was more prudent 
in aYoiding whatsoever nu^ht awaken the suspicions and the 
jealousy of his &ther. He shunned flatterers and refused 
the praises justly due to his noble actions. This conduet 
did but add to the glory which occasioned his danger. 

The first symptom which Abbas save of his suspicions 
was to put to death a man who was the tutor and intimate 
friend of his son. Knowing that the only crime of this 
officer was the too great respect which he bore his master, 
the young prince presented himself at court. There, giving 
free vent to his just indignation at what was done by Abbas, 
he forgot all prudence and thought no more of hiis safety. 
It is related that he was irritate to the degree of derange- 
ment, and that he dared, in the presence of even his father and 
hb king, to draw his sword. The fatal order of death was 
given on the spot ; but Abbas consented to deprive him but 
of sight 

Cut off from the light of the day, the prince fell into 
deep despair. Nothing could please him more, and his whole 
life was passed in forming vain projects and fruitless purposes 
of vengeance against the author of his life and his misfor- 
tunes. He had two children ; the elder was an amiable girl 
named Fatima, who was the idol of her grandfather, and who 
had obtained over him an extraordinary influence. Abbas 
appeared unhappy when little Fatima was not by him ; her 
voice could alone mitigate the violent fits of passion to 
which he daily became more and more subject The prince 
listened with a ferocious joy to what was told him of his 
daughter's influence and of the need which the king had of 
her towards his happiness. 


Ooe day as she oame to play in his amis, he clatched her 
with the fiury of a maniac and instantly strangled her. The 
mother, stupefied, screamed and said to him that it was his 
cherished daughter he had killed ; instead of hearkening to 
her, he rushed to seize his son, still an infant, and to satiate 
likewise upon him his frenzy. The wretched princess suc- 
ceeded in rescuing from him the child and sending to inform 
Abbas. The rage and the despair of the monarch on 
beholding this horror gave to his son a moment of joy. The 
wretch fed with avidity upon that horrible vengeance, and 
ended the terrible scene by drinking off a dose of poison 
which terminated in an instant his unfortunate existence. 

This prince expiated, like all the despots of the East, the 
grandeurs of external power by the anguishes of his domes- 
tic life. The dynastic system of the East made of sons and 
of brothers the presumptive enemies of their own blood. 
This system forced the kmgs or the Sultans to outrage nature, 
and nature avenged herself in torturing their heart. 


Such was the state of Persia, and such the apogee of the 
grandeur and of the misery of Schah- Abbas at the moment 
when an epileptic infant was ascending at Constantinople the 
throne of an idiot uncle. Of all the conquests that Persia 
had to reclaim from the Turks, Bagdad was the only 
one which had not yet completed the glory and the ambition 
of Schah- Abbas. 

But Bagdad, although nominally in submission to the 
Turks, was agitated with an independence which wanted 
really but the name of revolt This ancient and splendid 
capital of Arabia and of the Khalifs was torn between the 
rebel pashas of the Sultan and the leaders of Arabian fac- 
tions, who imposed on it by turns the tyranny of their great 
tribes of the desert. It was by itself alone an empire lost 
on the confines of Mesopotamia. The intestine revolutions 
of this province and of this capital presented as much of 
fickleness, of tragedy and of blood as Ispahan or Constanti- 

A short time before the advent of Amurath IV., the 
government of Bagdad, half Turkish and half Arab, was 
effectually divided between the civil governor and the beg- 
krbeg or military gov^nor. The civil governor was Arab^ 


tiie military one was Ottoman; hence inoessaot dissennonf 
of race and of attributions between the two rival authorities. 

The civil governor or sub-bashi was Bekir, a tribe chief^ 
of great influence in the city and in the desert. He had 
at command twelve hundred cavalry (azabs), who counter* 
balanced upon occasion the military force of the beglerbeg 
Yousouf-Pasha. Bekir obeyed the Porte but on condition of 
reigning in his own country. 

One day, while Bekir was visiting the tents of hb tribe 
in the country, his son, named Mohsunmed, pretending him- 
self menaced by the beglerbeg, insurrected the city in the 
name of his father's popularity and pointed the cannons of 
the ramparts against the citadel. The father at this intelli* 
gence massacred five hundred Turkish soldiers, whom he had 
taken with him perfidiously from the city, under pretext of 
assisting him to levy some tributes ; then he with his Arabs 
re-entered Bagdad and continued to blockade Yousouf in the 
fortress. One of his rivals of popularity in the city^ 
Mohammed-Aga, who had taken part with the beglerb^ 
Yousouf, seeing the citadel on the verge of succumbing, came 
forth, and with his two sons advanced to implore tha gene- 
rosity of Bekir. ïhe pitiless Arab caused all three to be 
thrown in a boat which was filled with kindled sulphur and 
bitumen, and abandoning them to the current of the Tigris, 
seated himself on the bank to see the torture and to hear 
the cries of Mohammed and of his sons. 

Yousouf had to capitulate and withdraw from the city. 

Bekir reigned there with unshared dominion, in the mock 
name of the Turks. He interdicted to all the pashas who 
were sent by the Porte the entrance of Bagdad. The 
Porte, indignant, at last appointed Hafiz, pasha of Diarbekir, 
serdar or supreme general of an expedition against Bekir. 
The governors of the provinces of Maraseh, of Mosoul, of 
Amasia, of Sirvas and of entire Mesopotamia, had orders to 
join their troops to his army. The Kurds joined him at 
Mosoul, under command of the beg of Kurdistan. 

Obliged to turn back to face Abaza, a revolted pasha of 
Merasch, who was advancing upon his right flank, he sent 
the half of his army only before him, to the walls of Bagdad. 
Bekir came forth, and, without accepting battle, harassed 


with his Arabian cavalry the motionless army of the Turks, 
rfiut in betwecA the desert and the city. Hafiz, coming up 
with all his forces, fell upon the Arabs of Bekir, and raised 
in the desert a pyramid of several thousand heads of rebels, 
before his tent, after the victory. He crossed the Tigris and 
besieged the city on the side of the fortress " of the Bird," 
the main redoubt of Bagdad upon the river. 

Pressed by Hafiz, from whom he could expect no manner 
of mercy, Bekir offered through his emissaries the city to 
the Persians, if they would only succor him against Hafiz. 
Schah- Abbas, always watchful for the events which might 
restore to Persia the most regretted of her provinces and 
the most splendid of her capitals, advanced thirty thousand 
men, under the orders of his best general, Sophi-Kouli-Khan. 

At the approach of these troops, Bekir, changing his 
part, proposed to Hafiz to defend with him Bagdad against 
the Persians, called in by his own intrigues, on condition of 
being invested by the Porte with the hereditary government 
of the city. Hafiz replied to this offer but by lifting his 
poniard upon the throat of the negotiator of Bekir. The 
following day Bekir declared himself subject of Schah- 
Abbas, and sent insolently, not now in his own name, but in 
that of the king of Persia, a summons to Hafiz to evacuate 
with his army the Persian territory. One of the three hun- 
dred Persian nobles who had entered the city of Bagdad 
was the bearer of the summons. 

" We are not upon Persian territory," responded Hafiz ; 
"we are here to chastise a rebel, and our mission cannot 
break the peace between the two empires." — " The bird that 
enters the net belongs to the hunter," replied the envoy. — 
" The bird of which you speak is in our cage," rejoined the 
serdar, placing his hand upon his scimitar ; " if it flies away 
into your nests, we will not pursue it." — ^* A truce to vain 
words ! " exclaimed haughtily the Persian ; " withdraw from 
the walls of Bagdad, or Kartschghaïkhan will soon compel 
you. y — ^^ If the peace be violated," replied Hafiz, " the respon- 
sibility falls on your head." 


At the moment when these combats, these negotiations 
and these treacheries were holding in suspense the fate of 
Bagdad, the grand vizier sent to Bekir the title of pasha, of 

214 msTOBT or tubkst. 

hereditary goyemor of the city and of defender of the 
" Honse of Salvation," the religions sarname of the capital 
of the Kalifis. This satisfaction of the ambition of Bekir 
made of this Arab, before traitor to the Ottomans, a greater 
traitor to his new master. He ordered to be called before 
him, one by one, the three hundred Persians whom he intro- 
duoed into the fortress <^ of the Bird," massacred them, and 
had their three hundred bodies suspended from the battle- 
ments of the city wall in order to terrify the Persian army. 
He kept but one of them aliye to be the bearer to the 
general of Sohah-Abbas of the news of his treachery. 
*< Long life to the king Schah- Abbas," said he ironically m 
thb message; ^^he has deliyered us by your presence from 
the oppression of the Turks ; we are now free and masters 
in Bagdad ; be the bearer to your sovereign of the thanks 
of Bdkir." 


Hafix drew off his useless army towards Mosoul, after 
this shameful transaction of the Porte. 

Meanwhile, Schah- Abbas, indignant at the perfidy and 
the insolence of the new pasha Bekir, appeared, fourteen 
days after, before the walls of Bagdad, to avenge the 
outrage done his honor and his soldiers. Bekir implored 
the succor of Hafix. This serdar, occupied in driving back 
the army of Abaza which was marching upon him towards 
Mosoul, was unable to send but a detachment to Bagdad. 
This detachment, commanded by Houssein-Pasha could not 
force the line of the complete blockade of the Persians, and 
Houssein-Pasha, called by thejn into a conference, was 
massacred in reprisal of the massacre of the three hundred 
Persians victimized by Bekir. 

The siege had lasted now three months ; the mines had 
opened sixty breaches in the ramparts ; hunger and terror 
had driven numbers of the inhabitants to desert into the 
camp of the Persians. The son himself of Bekir, brought 
up in the father's perversity, did not hesitate to conspire 
against that father with the besiegers. He was named 
Mohammed, and commanded the citadel of Bagdad. The 
promise of beinff made governor of the city by Schah- Abbas 
in place of his rather, induced him to open the gates, daring 
the night of the 28th of November, 1623, to the besiegers. 


Bekir learaed on awaking, by the sound of the Persian 
tymbals and by the chanting of the Persian muezzins upon 
the minarets, that he was the victim of his son and the 
prisoner of Abbas. " The city is the Schah's," shouted 
through all its sections the public criers. " The king of 
Persia accords a general amnesty to all the inhabitants. 
Let the markets be re-opened, and let no one molest his 
neighbor under pretext of difference of religion or of race 
in the common capital of the descendants of the Khalifs." 
This amnesty and tolerance of Abbas changed in an instant 
into security and plenty the terror and scarcity of the 
capital. Abbas wished, not to destroy cities, but to re-edify 
a monarchy. 

Bekir, brought at noon into the presence of the Schah, 
found his unworthy son seated along side the vanquisher to 
judge and to punish him. This unnatural son outraged his 
father by words and gestures, and reproached him, in the 
name of the treason which he had just committed, with the 
treacheries which that father had committed against the 
Turks and Persians. The paternal treasures were aban- 
doned to him in recompense of his parricide. 


Meanwhile the amnesty and tolerance of Abbas could 
not prevail long against the religious animosity of the Per- 
sians, followers of Ali, against the inhabitants of Bagdad 
become, under the Ottomans, followers of Omar. Exe- 
cutions and martyrdoms ensan^ned the conquered city. 
Nouri-E£fendi and Omar-Effendi, famous preaciiers of the 
two chief mosques of the city, having generously refused to 
blaspheme the name of Omar and the name of Othman, 
were hung from a palm-tree with a camel halter which 
passed through their jaws, 3,nà fired at leisurely, as a living 
target, by the fanatics who coveted a part in their blood. 

Bekir, confined beneath the eyes of his miscreant son in 
an iron cage, was therein tortured for six days and six nights. 
The seventh day the cage was suspended over a fierce fire 
which reddened the bars of the grating, to constrain him to 
disclose the hiding place where he liad put his treasures. 
His son attended at this torture of his father to encourage 
it. Bekir was at last thrown into a bark becoated with 

216 HI6T0BT or TTTBKBT. 

pitch and sulphur to perish of the same tortare by which he 
had martyrised the aga Mohammed. 

The entire city contemplated without pity, from the 
banks of the Ti^is, the torments of the traitor, punished 
by treachery. Abbas, alone shocked at the atrocity of the 
son of Bekir, to whom he had promised the heritage of his 
fitither, exiled him into Khorassan, where the executioners 
soon after avenged the cause of nature and of heayen. 

Thus returned Bagdad into the hands of Persia. Schah- 
Abbas sojourned there some days to visit the tombs of the 
saints of Islam. He sent his army to pursue Hafis as fitr as 
the walls of Mosoul. 

The fidelity of a dog to its master, according to the his- 
torian, Petschewi, saved the city and the army. A Kurd 
woman, enamored of a Persian, and who had promised to 
open him a secret gate to the ramparts, got up during the 
night to accomplish her promise; she was already aiming 
the hatchet at the head of her sleeping husband, when the 
dog, witnessing the crime, sprung at the throat of the faith- 
less wife, laid her prostrate, and, awaking by its furious bark- 
ing the guards of the citadel, saved at once its master, the 
city and the army. In the trenches of Mosoul is seen the 
tomb of the dog, of which tradition has preserved the 

^ IX. 

Amurath IV. relieved the dejection of the Ottomans, at 
the news of the fall of Bagdad, but by blood. The grand visi- 
er Ali gave him the example df, and taste for, executions. Sus- 
pecting the governor of Egypt, Beber-Mohammed, of being 
come to Constantinople in the hope of succeeding him in the 
supreme power, he summoned Beber to the divan. Befbre 
the opening of the session, he assembled some bostandjis of 
the guard and said to them : ^^ The padischah has ordered 
the death of a great culprit, which of you will offer him- 
self to execute the sentence ?" 

One of the protegees and most grateful favorites of the 
governor of Egypt, named Kara-Mahmoud, not knowing who 
was the victim^ presented himself first to obey the Sultan. 
" Very well," said the grand vizier, *• strike then him whom 
I shall strike." 

A moment after, the governor of Egypt was announced. 


Tli6 grand viiier arose, adTaneed to the porok of the palaee, 
and, overwhelming with invectives Beber, who was ascending 
the upper steps, struck liim a blow of the fist upon the breast, 
and threw hun backwards to the ground. At this signal, 
Mahmoud recognized too late that the person whose death 
he had just promised, was his protector and second father. 
Turning away the head, he allowed his bostandjis to finish 
the murder of his benefactor. 

The Sultan was thus inured to the spectacle of execu- 
tions. Two days after, a discontentment of the troops hav- 
ing wrung by force from him the dismissal of the aga of the 
Janissaries, Beiran, his brother-in-law, he ordered to appear 
before Mm, after the concession was accomplished, the aga 
of the spahis, in the divan, and saw from the bottom of a 
stage which was separated by a grating, the head of this aga 
roll upon the floor. 

At the instance of the Sultana Validé Koesem, protect- 
ress of the ex-chief of the black eunuchs of the harem of 
Ahmet I., the grand vizier recalled from Mecca this exile, to 
restore him to his place in the seraglio. " Beware of this 
perfidious eunuch," said his friends to him, ^^ he will ruin 
you." The eunuch Mustapha, reinstated in fact in his post 
of confidence, and conspiring with the mufti, was not slow 
to verify those menaces. He told the Sultan what the grand 
vizier had hitherto concealed from him, the fall of Bagdad, 
the progress of the revolt of Abaza-Pasha, the victories of 
the Persians, the poverty of the treasury, the insubordina- 
tion of the lumy, the degradation of the reign under a 
minister who made the seraglio tremble, but who left the 
provinces to anarchy. 

Amurath IV., says the Venetian narrative, sent secretly 
for the mufti, and asked if it was true that he desired to 
resign his place to leave it to the brother-in-law of the grand 
vizier. The mufti, astonished, declared that he had never 
given this hope or made such an insinuation to Ali. Amu- 
rath, convinced of the ambition and falsehood of his first 
minister, commanded him to the seraglio and had his head 
cut off before his eyes. The treasures of Ali, which 
amounted to seven hundred thousand piasters in money in 
his coffers, replenished the void of the imperial treasury. 
Mére-Houssein, the former grand vizier, involved in other 
intrigues of his own, and guilty of a portion of the calami- 
ties of the empire, was also strangled the same day, and his 
Vol. flL— 10 


Spoils, valaed at fifty thousand ducats, augmented the con- 
fiscations which flowed back to their source. 

An old Circassian, named Mohammed-Tsoherkesse, from 
the name of his country, a former groom of the Sultan, nur- 
tured in the palace and in the camps, incapable of business, 
was raised in spite of himself to the . rank of grand vizier. 
After having abused with the rudeness of a barbarian the 
envoys and the protcjgées of the Christian powers to make 
them pay for their rel&ous privileges at Jerusalem or else- 
where, Mohammed-Tscherkesse mustered the army to crush 
finally the rebellion of Abaza. 

Abaza continued, under Amurath IV., his part, thence- 
forward without a motive, of avenger of Othman II. Amu- 
rath upon the throne, was himself the living avenger of his 
brother; but the rebellion had struck such root into the 
habits of Caramania, that any pretext served for the unsub- 
dued Turcomans to follow Abaza. His real insurrection was 
against the Janissaries ; he massacred them without mercy 
and without exception, wherever he met them in the cities 
which had opened to him their gates. 

At Siwas, three officers of the Janissaries having been 
made prisoners by his lieutenant, Djafar, a rebel more fero- 
cious than himself, they were bound upon the backs of 
camels and paraded through the streets, stuck over with 
burning matches, which traversed the flesh of their shoulders 
and burned them slowly, amid the applauses of the people. 
'^ Such is the recompense," shouted before them the public 
criers, " of soldiers who betray and slay their padischah." 
The routes were covered with the unburied dead of the Jan- 
issaries, of the spahis, of the topdjis or gunners, reputed 
guilty of the murder of Othman. 

The army of Abaza, strong by sixty thousand Turco- 
mans, and by his own fanaticism of fidelity to the blood of 
his master, advanced anew from triumph to triumph towards 
Siwas. Encamped in the valley " of Snows," it awaited, in 
taking exercise, the army of the grand vizier. The com- 
mandant of Siwas, Taïar-Pasha, although devoted in appear- 
ance to his cause, complotted with another of his lieutenants, 
Koulaoun-Pasha, to ruin him. Their peace was made with 
the grand vizier. Taïar-Pasha meanwhile meditated the 


destruction at the same time of Abaza by Koulaotm and of 
Koalauon by Abaza. He set himself to sow mutual dis- 
trust between those two chiefs, having it insinuated to Abaza 
that he was betrayed by Koulaoun, and persuading Koula- 
onn that he was menaced by Abaza. Abaza, simple as a 
barbarian, was entirely governed by a fanatic sheik of Ces- 
area, who guaranteed lum the favor of heaven for his holy 
cause, and who showed him in the prospect the elevated 
post of grand vizier, and restorer of the Ottoman monarchy. 
The ruin of Abaza commenced by his credulity to the 
suggestions of Taïar, the governor of Siwas. Convinced 
that he was sold to the Porte by his perfidious lieutenant, 
he invited Koulaoun-Pasha to a festival in the camp, before 
the walls of Siwas, and had him assassinated after the ban- 
quet. He addressed, after this execution, a threatening let- 
ter to the aga of the Janissaries at Constantinople, to 
announce imprudently to this soldiery the irreconcilable 
hatred with which he burned towards them. This ironical 
letter of Abaza, prompted by his treacherous counsellors, 
was the brand most sure to kindle against him the anger of 
the army of the grand vizier. Here it is : 

" To our honored lord and brother, the kiaya 
of the Janissaries,^^ 

^^ Thou ezcitest thy soldiers to march against the rebel 
Abaza, under the orders of the grand vizier. It is an affair 
of honor with the Janissaries, without any doubt ; but why 
forget the begs and the spahi^ ? Courage ! continue to merit 
the bread of the padischah by thy services ! Had this noble 
zeal but seized you earlier, you would not have looked tran- 
quilly upon the murder of your master in open mosque. 
Unfortunately, your brethren, the spahis, not content with 
the best places under the cupola of the divan, have possessed 
themselves of the functions of tax collectors and administra- 
tors, and there is nothing left for you : yet, without your 
fraternal aid, could they, I ask you, have done the deed ? 
But you have had the plunder of the richest palaces of Con- 
stantinople. You are the cause of the ruin of Islamism. 
If the Sultan Othman had taken refuge at the door of the 
spahis, his fate would have been very different. Have you 
acted for gold ? But the unfortunate padischah would have 
readily promised you fifty ducats per head. Although the 


mother of the Saltan Mustapha be of the £unil^ of Abaia 
and my kinswoman, and that I might have rejoiced at her 
elevation, the heavens are my witness, that, if I have taken 
arms, it is solely to avenge the blood unjustly shed. Assem- 
ble then all thy warriors round thee. Like Nebuohodonosor, 
who avenged the innocent blood of the prophet John, by the 
massacre of sixty-six thousand Israelites, I mean to alaj 
sixty-six thousand Janissaries in vengeance of the murder of 
the padischah. I will see thee on the day of battle, and we 
will know then if the spahis shall prove to you of great 
assistance. These men, who, with your assistanoe, had not 
the means of feeding a horse, are now masters of the land 
and possessors of extensive territories. Madmen 1 what 
have you there ^dned by your treachery ? the baleful name 
of murderers of a Sultan! By my soul! when Khalil- 
Pasha was aga of the Janissaries, I was his equerry ; I 
know consequently how things passed in the staff; it is the 
kiaya who gave the word. Or, if you pretend to have had 
no part in the crime, and affirm tliat it was committed by 
Daoud-Pasha, give up the murderers I 
" May salvation be upon thee ! " 

" There is a little man somewhat full of his self-impor- 
tance," said the kiaya of the Janissaries, on reading aloud to 
them the missive of Abaza ; '^ if we let him go on, ho will 
massacre more Janissaries than there are existing in the 
whole empire." — **We were but twenty-five thousand at Ohoe- 
zim against the Poles," cried a private soldier ; " the Sul- 
tan, who enlarged our number to forty thousand in days of 
pressure, may well at present raise it to the force of eighty 

Indignation seized the army. The aged Tsdierkesse, 
unfit for the command, yielded me place of grand vizier Mid 
the conduct of the war to Hafiz, the vanquisher of the Per- 
sians. Hafiz was kinsman and former friend of Abaza; but 
he washed himself of all treason by the known loyalty of 
his character. He set out at the head of eighty thousand 
combatants, infuriated enemies of Abaza, and encamped 
during twenty-one days in the fertile plain of Koniah. 
Time, seduction, perfidy, were wasting the forces of the re- 
volt, and augmenting his numbers. Possessing the qualities 
of the statesman no less than those of the general, he knew 
that, in the face of anarchy, to wait is to vanquish. 



His soldierai blamed his sloth, of which they did not un- 
derstand the wisdom. Impatient to encounter in Abaza 
their personal enemy, they tried several times to march be- 
fore the order for engagement. The intrepid Hafiz threw 
himself sabre in hand before the vanguard, to oppose their 
unreasonable ardor. He save battle omy after assuring him- 
self of the defection of the Turcomans, who composed the 
Principal forces of Abaza. They passed over with Taïar- 
*asha to the Turks at the first shot. 

The Kurds and the Arabs, old companions of Abaza, 
were not shaken by this defection ; but a panic disconcerted 
those whom the sight of an army could not terrify. The 
battle horse of Abaza, held in lease by a groom, while its 
master was offering a prayer before joining the battle, hav- 
ing escaped from uie servant, galloped wildly upon the line 
of the Kurd cavalry. The troops of Abaza, at the sight of 
their general's horse without a rider, believed Abaza to have 
fallen by the hands of the Turks, and disbanded at the first 
shock, as they lost their cause in having lost their chief. 
Abaza himself, seeing himself without an army before the 
battle, threw himself upon the fleetest of his horses. Which 
one of his slaves by prudence kept saddled and bridled near 
his tent, and fled at full speed with the best mounted of the 
Kurdish cavalry. All his infantry fell into the hands of 
Hafiz, who extinguished their old rebellion in their blood. 
Mountains of heads were the monuments of this rout. The 
wives and children of Abaza, captured in their fiight, were 
sent prisoners to Hafiz, who spared them from the massacre. 
Abaza himself, arrived at Erzeroum, shut himself up there 
with the remains of his defenders. 

Hafiz, satisfied with having purged and pacified Anatolia, 
postponed to other times the extermination of the author of 
the revolt, master still of a fortified city and a mountainous 
province. He sent him back his family, received his submis- 
sion to the Sultan, and guaranteed him the title of pasha of 
Erzeroum. Troubles and disasters in the Crimea called him 
back to Constantinople to repair around the Black Sea the 
vanished ascendant of the Turks. 



The two brothers, Mohammed-Gheraï and Schahin-Ghe- 
ra!, had been for a long time, proscribed from the throne by the 
Porte, which had conferred the title of Khan of the Crimea 
upon another prince of their house, Mohammed-Gheraî, hay- 
ing escaped from the fortress of the Seven Towers, wheiB 
the Turks had detained him in captivity, and Sohahin-Gheral, 
fled for refuge into Persia to Abbas the Great, were returned 
to the Crimea to insurrect and to enroll partisans amonff 
the Noghais Tartars. Schahin-Gheraï (tJie falcon) believed 
himself, upon the faith of a dervish, reported prophet, called 
to the empire of the East, because this empire was promised, 
according to the prophecy, to a prince of the house of 
Gehraï who should bear the name of a bird. The two 
brothers, coalesced against the Khan appointed by the Porte, 
had expelled him from the throne of the country. Moham- 
med had usurped the title of khan ; and Schahin, according 
to the queer constitution of the Crimea, governed under him 
in title of khalga or successor designated to the throne. 

Their tyranny soon raised murmurs and factions in the 
Crimea. They caused to be massacred on their passage the 
Bussian envoys sent to Constantinople, and pillaged the pre- 
sents intended for the Sultan. They recruited a numerous 
army of Tartars under the false pretext of invading Poland, 
but in reality to march upon Adrianople, during the reign 
of the imbecile Mustapha I. They proclaimed openly the 
design of availing themselves of the anarchy of that shadow 
of a reign, and to substitute by force of arms their dynasty, 
throng right of kindred, for the legitimate line of Othman, 
on the verge of extinction. Both of them without children, 
they had just proclaimed a young prince, a bastard of the 
former khan, Feth-Gheraï, Noureddin, that is to say, heir 
presumptive to the crown of the Crim Tartars. 

The object of this adoption was to rally to their course 
the partisans of the ancient branch of the family, dis- 
possessed by them of the throne, all in excluding the legiti- 
mate heirs of this branch. The birth of this Noureddin, 
named Ahmed-Gheraï, was surrounded with that prestige of 
the mysterious and the ' marvellous which feiscinates with 
particular readiness a shepherd people. The former Khan 
of the Crimea, according to the popular traditions, having 
received as present a young Moldavian slave girl of high 


hiffh and of most exquisite beauty, had treated her respeot- 
fally, notwithstanding his admiration, &nd confided her to an 
old man, his ancient preceptor, named Hadji- Ahmed, until 
he could send her back securely to the boyard her father. 

One night however, at the hour when the Elhan dismissed 
his court to go to sleep, one of his favorites annoxmced to 
him as a happy piece of news that the yoimg Moldavian slave, 
reputed virgin, had just given birth to a son, and he added, 
in smiling and congratulating the Khan, that this child must 
become one day a ^eat prince. The Khan, offended at 
being suspected of this dereliction of the hospitality promised 
to the daughter of a boyard, and rejecting the suspicion of 
paternity whereupon he was complimented, hurled his slippers 
in the face of the imprudent informant, and gave orders to 
slay the old man, the slave and the child. But, whether it 
was that this order was but a trick of the Khan to hide his 
frailty under the pretension of anger, or that Kadji- Ahmed, 
apprised in time, had prevented By flight the execution, the 
old man, the mother and the son disappeared.' This son, 
brought up in the steppes of the Crimea by shepherds igno- 
rant of his high birth received among them to his ado- 
lescence the name of Mustapha. 

The two brothers G-heraï, usurpers of the throne of the 
Khan the father, real or supposititious, of Mustapha, dis- 
covered him in the tents of the shepherds, had him brought 
to their court and proclaimed him Noureddin, to the prejudice 
of his cousins, heirs direct and legitimate. This preference 
excited violent quarrels between young Hassan-Gheraï, grand 
nephew of the deposed Khan, and the Noureddin. Hassan- 
Oheraï, in one of these boy quarrels, dared to call the Nou- 
reddin a Moldavian shepherd and a bastard of a slave. 
This nickname stuck to the young pretender to the sover- 
eignty of the Tartars. 


The Porte was offended that tributary princes and rela- 
tives of its dynasty should dishonor their blood by the adop- 
tion of a bastard, and should set up pretensions to even the 
throne of Constantinople. The divan deposed Mohammed 
and restored the former Khan. 

Mohammed and his brother resisted this order. " What ! " 
replied they to the capitan-pasha come to reduce them to 


salMnissioDy '< is it justice and policy to oottdemn ns to expa* 
triation, at the moment when we haye assembled a hundred 
Ihonsand Tartars to defend yon against your enemies of 
Poland and of Asia ? All Ôie inhabitants of our steppes 
haye already harnessed the wagons and are waiting but the 
order for departure. Is it the moment to send us back 
shamefully to our yourds, into the depths of the desert? 
When we shall haye abandoned the Orimea, when it shall 
haye fallen into the hands of the infidel Busidans, do you 
think of remaining masters of Caffa and of your citadels ? " 


The oapitan-pasha, deaf to these remonstrances, saye 
battle to the hundred thousand Tartars and to the myriads 
of Cossacks their allies. The Turks, yanquished and crushed 
by numbers, remained dead or prisoners on the field of 
battle. The price of a Turk in the tents of the Tartars was 
so reduced by the crowd of the captiyes, that an Ottoman 
slaye was purchasable for a glass of bouza (a Crimea beer 
extracted immemorially from fermented barley among the 

Caffa, depriyed of its defenders, was occupied by Moham- 
med-Gheraï. The capitan-pasha, to recoyer this citadel of 
the maritime Crimea, was obliged to recognize shamefully the 
soyereignty of the two brothers and of the bastard Noureddin. 
He re-emlMurked with the wrecks of his army, of his artillery, 
and of his fleet. This triumph exalted the pride of the two 
tyrants of the Crimea. They sacrificed to their security all 
the mirzas, princes or tribe chiefs, suspected of fidelity or 
merely remembrance of the legitimate branch. The preg- 
nant wife of prince Cantamir, their enemy, chief of the Tar- 
tar faction opposed to that of the brothers, was burned in a 
slow fire before their eyes. They pursued himself into Wal- 
lachia. But Cantamir at the head of thirty thousand Tar- 
tars, Moldayians and Wallachians of his partisans, threw 
their army into the Danube, red, says the historian, with the 
torrents of blood poured forth upon its banks. 

It was during this campaign of the Tartar princes of the 
Crimea against Cantamir and the Turks, that the Cossack 
Tartars, nomads, cayaliers and pirates, rayaging equally land 
and sea, appeared for thé first time since the occupation of 
the Bosphorus by the Turks, in yiew of Constantinople» 


They equipped one hundred and fifty donble-prowed two- 
helmed barks, fit to mancearre in all directions without veering. 
Each of these barks carried twenty rowers and twenty com* 
bâtants. The Eussians, pirates of the same rivers and the 
same seas before them, had taught them this construction of 
vessels fit to run into the narrow inlets and the mouths of 
shallow streams. Seven times within historic memory, these 
incursions of the Scythians, of the Eussians and of the 
Cossacks their imitators, had spread terror through the ports 
of the Euxine and of the Bosphorus. 

After having pillaged the shores of the Black Sea, the 
Cossacks, allies on thb occasion to the Tartars of the Crimea, 
burned the delightful village of Bouyoukdéré, the seat of 
pleasure and of luxury of the Ottomans as of the Greeks 
during summer. The flames of Bouyoukdéré brought forth 
six hundred sail from the port of Constantinople to drive 
back those savages beyond the Bosphorus. Ten thousand 
Janissaries, spread along the two banks of the strait, marched 
in line with the fleet to shut both land and sea to those inceu' 
diaries. The Cossacks formed their squadron into a crescent 
in the middle of the broad basin that forms the Bosphorus 
between Bouyoukdéré and the coast of Asia, and awaited 
proudly the* setting of the sun and the land breeze, which 
rises with the fall of ni^ht, to reenter the Black Sea. They 
.burned in retiring the beacon of the strait, where their mi- 
cestors, some seven centuries before, debarked to diffuse 
terror amoi^ the Greeks. 

The Turks, to prevent their return, hung from one bank 
of the strait to the other, at the entrance to the Black Sea, 
the famous iron chain which used to shut up before Mahomet 
IL the entrance of the Golden Horn to Constantinople. 


Hafiz, after having restored some confidence to the cap- 
ital, set out with twenty thousand Janissaries for Diarbekur. 
The army which had under him vanquished Abaza, reinforced 
by those new troops and served by a revolt of the Georgians 
who had just massacred thirty thousand Persians in the 
Sicilian vespers of Georgia, advanced to reconquer Bagdad. 
" I have the keys of Bagdad at my girdle," sung on his rout 
the presumptuous Hafiz. 

The siege, prolonged during six months for want of 8u£Gl- 
Vol.111.— 10* 

226 HI0TOBT 0¥ TtTBKKT. 

oient artillerj, gare to Schah* Abbas the time to oome to tiM 
relief of his besi^ed capital. The garrison of Bagdad 
sainted him dnrinff three days and three nights with tàùvoê 
repeated from the neight of the ramparts. The battle ao- 
cepted the following day by Hafiz was more bloody than 
decisive. The sacred band of Schah^Abbas, composed often 
thousand chosen cavalry, bound by oath to victory or death, 
beat back every where the Ottomans. The wt of the spahis 
himself flying before the irresistible cloud of Persian cavalry, 
sought a refuge in the ranks of the Janissaries. These fero- 
cious soldiers cut off his legs in rallying him upon his cow* 
ardice, in order to punish the limbs that served him to save 
his head from the sword of the Persiana Hafiz, snatching 
himself a lance from a foot soldier and rushing in, chanting a 
war-song, to the front rank of the Janissaries, saved the 
honor of the army : he annihilated to the last man the sacred 
band of the Persians. 


This victory, followed by vain negotiations between 
Abbas and Hafiz, wearied with impatience the Janissaries. 
« We have no longer either horses or asses," said they, what 
can we do a day more before those walls ? " The mutinous 
soldiers struck down the tent of the grand vizier upon his 
head. Hafiz, deposed tumultuously by his army, was im- 
prisoned in a fortress of the banks of the Tigris, called the 
Castle of Iman. One of his lieutenants, favorable to the 
wishes of the soldiers, Mourad-Pasha, was proclaimed grand 
vizier. Othman, the standard-bearer of the banner of Hafiz, 
refused to give this symbol of the viziership to the rebels. 

" Who are you," said he to them, " to arrogate the right 
of deposing and appointing a grand vizier ? This tent is 
that of the Sultan our master ; as long as I am left a hand 
to defend it the sacred standard will not leave it." The 
intrepid soldier let his two arms be cut and hacked to pieces 
in clinging to the standard. His courage inspired remorse 
in the mutineers ; they raised up the tent, replaced the colors 
before the door, and brought back Hafiz, promising to him 

" Where are now, then," said he to them, " those brave 
soldiers who made oath to me to conquer or to die before the 
walls of Bagdad ? " He asked them two days' patienoo ; he 


w«8 answered but by clamorous orders to make a prompt re- 
k«at. '^ If thou hast a sabre long enough," repeated to him 
the soldiers, '^ take Bagdad to-day ; if not, take refuge among 
ih» Bed-Heads," a nickname of the Persians. 

Meanwhile Hafiz, obtaining the delay, implored to see the 
effect of a mine which was to carry off by its explosion a flank 
of the ramparts. The mine went off by imprudence or by 
treachery before having been conducted as far as the founda- 
tions. At the sight of the walls intact, the entire army re- 
volted with augmented fury against its general. The tents 
of the vizier, me treasury, the baggage, the provisions were 
pillaged; the artillery dismounted and transported to the 
fortress of Iman on the way to Mosoul. The grand vizier 
and the Janissaries sought here themselves an asylum against 
the anarchy of the camp. 

Schah- Abbas, informed of these discouragements and these 
revolts, broke off all negotiation, saying that " it was not the 
usage to treat with an army in flight." The cannon of Soli- 
man, brought from Constantinople and hidden by the artillery- 
men in the sand, fell into his hands and went to decorate the 
palace of Ispahan. Hafiz turned round, however, to drive 
back the Persians hanging upon his rear-guard to harass 
him, and vanquished them at two marches from Bagdad. 
The evening of this victory he was able with impunity to 
behead the seditious tribune of the army, Mourad-Pasha, the 
instigator of the disorders and the retreat. This victory 
and this execution allowed him to shelter the army in Mosoul. 

The Sultan wrote him to canton the army and pass the 
winter at Aleppo in awaiting the reinforcements that were 
being levied in the empire. This young prince, who culti- 
vated poetry, as did Hafiz himself, exchanged during the winter 
several letters in verse with his grand vizier. The Sultana 
Koesem, his mother, sustained the vanquisher of Abaza in the 
mind of her son against the intrigues of the seraglio. She 
discovered hitherto Inhini alobe the heroism which retrieved 
the reign abroad, and the literary tastes that decorated it at 

The letters in verse of the young Sultan, upon political 
and sacred subjects were signed by Amurath IV., but in- 
spired and dictated by her. Serious business, if we trust 
the historiographers of the times, was intermingled in 
them with the amusement of leisure. The game of chess, 
familiar to ike Turks as to the Persians, suppUed them allu- 


âoDi of a dovUe meanisg to the Sultan and to hk miaisttt; 
*^ Is the queen no loi^r upon the board to bring me back 
my knights ? " wrote Hafiz. '^ âaye you no knights then to 
take the king ? " responded Amurath to his general The 
title of son-in-law of the Sultana Validé and brother-in-law 
of Amurath, authorized these literary familiarities between 
the imperial £unily and the grand yizier. 


But the habits of sedition in the army and revolutions in 
the capital prevailed still over the ability of the Sultana 
mother and oyer the devotedness of Hafiz. The army of 
Aleppo refused to march anew upon Bagdad, and the troops 
of Constantinople, pretended constantly new grievances 
against the divan, to extort concessions or heads from the 
young monarch, whom they had crowned in order to rule 
him, not to obey. 

The caïmakam, Ck>urdji-Mohammed, who held the place 
of grand vizier during the campaign of Persia, and whose 
experience and fidelity were the strength and guide of ihe 
Sultan, became an object of hatred to the Janissaries. After 
having vainly demanded his head from the Sultana, who pre- 
ferred courageously to expose her own and that of her son 
to such base ingratitude, the soldiers beset and massacred 
him on the steps of his palace. He had held, under eight 
Sultans, the highest functions of the divan and the army ; 
he died at eighty years, protecting the infancy of his master. 

Scarce was his blood grown cold when a new inconstancy 
of the Janissaries demanded the heads of those who slew 
the caïmakam ; they killed and cast into the sea the assassins 
of Gourdji-Mohammed. Some demanded imperiously of the 
mufti a decision authorizing the murder of the Sultan Mus- 
tapha I. ; others wished to keep him still alive as the pledge 
of a third revolution. One time they gave their popularity 
to those who had concurred in the overthrow of the prince ; 
anon they executed them without trial, as they had executed 
Daoud. The tschaousch, more lettered than his fellows, who 
had served as secretary to Mustapha I. for the composition 
of the katti-sherifs at the old seraglio in the day of the de- 
thrcmement of Othman II., was immolated and left unburied 
in the Hippodrome. 

Emeutes had no other means of repression thaji new 


em^ites ; those of the army responded to those of the capi- 
tal. Abaza, who had been left the government of Erzeroum 
and the nncleus of his rebellion, availed himself of this an- 
nihilation of all discipline, to recruit in the depths of Ana- 
tolia fresh forces to his party. Hafiz, removed by the divan 
to please the factions, returned without honors to Constan- 
tinople. Khalil-Pasha, grown old in the post of capitan- 
pasha, was appointed in his place on account of the ascen- 
dant which he was supposed to have over the chief of the 
rebels, Abaza, who had been his slave and who retained 
gratitude for his benefactions. 


Khalil, after having settled the difference between the 
Poles and the khans of the Crimea, went to plant his tent at 
Scutari, the first halt of the viziers, on their expeditions into 
Asia. Before entering on the campaign, he made a visit to 
the old sheik, Mahmoud of Scutari, venerated as an oracle 
of God by all parties, and whose call had often been a refuge 
to the prescripts of all revolutions. Khalil, at the period of 
his first viziership, had owed his life to the hospitality of the 
sheik Mahmoud. He had retained for him the gratitude and 
piety of a disciple. 

" There you are then once more at the summit of affairs,'* 
said with an accent of contempt for human grandeurs the^ 
man of God. Khalil interrogated him in vain upon the 
issue of the war ; the prophet wrapped himself in a silence 
which appeared of ill omen to the superstitious Janissaries. 

The contingents of all Anatolia joined Khalil at Aleppo. 
By an imperious letter, he summoned thither Abaza. The 
suspicious attitude of this former rebel-chief at Erzeroum left 
the army in doubt whether to view him as an auxiliary or as 
an enemy. " The soldiers do not like thee as seraskier]^^ said 
Khalil to him in the letter ; '^ make haste then to come to 
my camp as volunteer, and to merit by thy services the mercy 
of the padischah." 

The army of the faithful pashas who joined Khalil en- 
camped before the walls of Erzeroum. Abaza, undecided, 
dared neither to open nor to close the city. " What then is 
this slave, this faction-leader,'' cried the pashas, " who traffics 
his fidelity and the concurrence of his lewends (personal 
militia pf the pashas) with the Sultan ? We will be sure to 


bring kirn to his dntj with the same sabre whidi has often 
prostrated khans and the sons of kings." 

Abasa, informed of those mmors and Hiose menaces, 
feigned great seal for the service of the Sultan, inspired con- 
fidence in the pashas, and, falling upon their camp in the dead 
of a dark night, massacred six moosand Janissaries snrprised 
in their sleep. One of the seraskiers, the braye Dishleng- 
Pasha, was snrprised half-naked in his tent, where he was 
drying his clothes saturated with the rains of the day. He 
leaped in his shirt on horseback, having but his sabre to de- 
fend himself The kiaya of Abaza transpierced his neck 
with the blade of his lance. 

Abaza, dismounting and lifting the head of the dying 
Dishlene, addressed him these worcb of regret and of friend- 
ship: "Noble pasha, my old brother in arms, open thine 
eyes; thy son is still alive." Dishleng responded but by 
a sigh. Abaza himself placed the body upon his horse, 
and Drought it toErzeroum to give it sepulture. These 
pities, these treacheries, these generosities, these massacres, 
habitual to the same man, in these barbarous and heroic 
races of the Caucasus, recalled the tears and the frenzies of 
the heroes of Homer. 

While Abaza was tenderly burying the general of his 
enemies, he was having massacred in the city, without excep- 
tion, all the pashas and all the Janissaries made captive by 
his lewends. The drawers of the Janissaries, scolloped at 
the knee, so as to leave the joint free when they should kneel 
to take aim, served to betray them in the disguises which 
they assumed to escape the massacre. One alone out of ten 
thousand succeeded in softening his executioners and escap- 
ing, to be the bearer to Constantinople of the news of this 
slau^ter of a whole army. 

Eiialil hastened with troops to Aleppo to avenge the blood 
of the seraskiers and of the Janissaries. Abaza, his ancient 
slave, was deaf to his voice and shut the gates against him. The 
snows forced the grand vizier to raise the siege, and to seek 
a shelter for the army in Tokat A third of this army per- 
ished of cold and of hunger in the snowy défiles of those 
mountains. Entire battsdions were ingulfed under ava- 
lanches. Those reverses raised against the grand vizier the 
cry of the empire. Khalil, deposed and followed by the 
shadow of the army, destroyed without having combated, 
expired of grief at Scutari without having dared to enter 

HisTOBT OF tubkbt: 231 

Ccmstantinople. His virtues, always called in too late had 
never brought but signal misfortunes to his country. 


The Sultan replaced him by Khosrew, pasha of Diarbo- 
kir, who then commanded at Tokat the wrecks of the army 
lost at Erzeroum. He was a ferocious Bosniac, of whom 
sanguinary inflexibility was the sole policy. He commenced 
by striking terror into all the chiefs of the army-service, by 
executions, over vdiich he presided himself, seated upon an 
elevated stage before his tent Tokat, where he was recon- 
structing the army, saw fall in this way the heads of the def- 
terdar, of the treasurer, of the beg of Magnesia, of the 
judge of the camp and of Hadji-Pasha, son of a Sultana, 
whom the imperial blood did not preserve from deatL 

The Sultana Koesem sent a million of piasters to Kosh- 
rew to pay the troops. The pay discharged and the negli- 
gences punished with death brought in a few weeks to Tokat 
an affluence of all the begs and the provincial contingents 
from Egypt to Georgia. A march of fifty leagues in 
three days brought the army and artillery before Erzeroum. 
Abaza, surprised by this promptitude, took refuge in the cita- 
del. The counsellor of Abaia, the sheik of Gesarea, con- 
vinced that a capitulation was the sole salvation of Erze- 
roum, presented himself in a shroud with a rope round his 
neck, before his master, to conjure him to yield to his fate. 
Abaza capitulated on condition of keeping with him his 
troops, withdrew from the city, and went to encamp in the 
valley of Erzeroum at a small distance from Khosrew. 

Khosrew, ûiithful to the capitulation agreed upon, broi^ht 
with him Abaza to Constantinople, presented him to the Sul- 
tan, obtained his pardon, and appointed him, to change his 
country, governor of Bosnia. The ignorance of the barba- 
rian was such, that he had to inquire if Bosnia was in Asia 
or in Europe, and that he took Austria and Bohemia for 
being two fortresses of Hungary. But his address at man- 
a^ging a horse, and his vigor in launching a djered gave de- 
light to the young Sultan, who used to tid^e pleasure in wit- 
nessing his equestrian exercises from the height of a gallery 
of the Hippodrome. 

232 HI8T0BT 07 TUBKST. 


The repression of the Persians on the frontiers, the recon- 
stitution of the army, the energetic re-establishment of sub- 
ordination in the troops and the divan, in fine, the extinction 
of the rebellion and the removal of Abaza, had made Khos- 
rew the absolute dictator of the nation ; he not merely gov- 
erned, but reigned in the divan. The secretary of the Jan- 
issaries, Malkodj, favorite of the Sultan and of the Validé, 
dared alone to resist sometimes the absolute orders of the 
Bosnian. Having one day hesitated to write an order which 
was dictated to him hy the grand vizier in opposition to the 
will of the Sultan : " Write, slave I " said Khosrew to him ; 
'' am I not the all powerful interpreter of the will of the padi- 
schah, the highest in the empire ? Write, I tell thee, what 
I order thee ! " — ^^ Merciful vizier," replied the secretary, kiss- 
ing the skirt of Khosrew's mantle, " the head is responsible 
for what the hand writes ; take back my place and give it to 
a slave ; I will accept as a favor my dismissal" A creature 
of Khosrew was elevated to the functions repudiated at this 
cost by the proud Malkodj. The Sultan pardoned all to him 
who had been able to subdue the troops. 

Schabin-Gberaï, one of the two usurpers of the Crimea, 
overturned by the legitimate khan and by prince Oantemir, his 
general, had taken refuge in Poland. The Porte demanded 
in vain his extradition. The Poles justified their conduct in 
aiding him. 

The religious quarrels between the Catholics and the 
Greeks, revived by the protegees of France, agitated anew 
the Christian diplomacy at Constantinople. The Greek print- 
ing-house, established in that city, was assailed and sacked. 
The Jesuits, expelled as the instigators of these troubles, 
sought to establish themselves at Naxos, to possess them- 
selves of the religious administration of the Archipelago and 
of Jerusalem. The agitation sown in these islands by their 
presence occasioned their imprisonment at Chio, and finally 
their expulsion from the Ottoman empire, despite the urgency 
of France and Spain in favor of this monastic order. 

The tributary prince of Transylvania, Bethlem-Gabor, 
ambitious of the throne of Hungary, of Moldavia and Wal- 
lachia, uuder the title of the kingdom of the Daci, who had 
agitated so long Vienna and Constantinople with his intrigues 
and his double-faced policy, delivered by his death the divan 


and ihe court of Vienna of a perpetual ferment of discord. 
This death permitted Austria and the Porte to sign a new 
treaty of peace at Szoen in the palatinate of Comom, on the 
consolidated basis of the treaty of Sitvatorok. 


Amurath lY., arrived at this period at hb seventeenth 
year, and matured by the lessons of Hafiz, suffered impa- 
tiently the prolonged yoke of his mother and of the chief of 
the black eunuchs, Mustapha, secret counsellor of the policy 
of the harem. Offended that his mother had given, despite 
his repu^ance, one of her daughters to the capitan-pasha, 
Hassan, his present favorite, the Sultan had his sister car- 
ried off by force from the harem of Hassan, to whom she 
had been delivered. Some days after, he caused to be 
strangled in his harem, between the arms of another of his 
sisters, another of his brothers-in-law, Kara- Mustapha. 

These sudden executions struck terror into his mother. 
She tried to deaden his ferocity by festivities, by caresses, 
and by presents of female slaves, of Persian horses, and of 
purses containing ten thousand ducats in gold. The clever 
Sultana by these complacencies regained her influence over 
her son. 


The news of the death of Schah- Abbas restored to the 
divan the audacity and the hope of reconquering Bagdad. 
Khosrew marched with one hundred and fifty thousand men 
upon Aleppo. His route was marked by his severities and 
executions. Tourmisch-Beg, governor of Koniah, born like 
him in Albania,, and grown old in the service of the Sultans 
without having tampered for a day in the factions of the 
capital or of the- camps, was summoned by Khosrew to deli- 
ver up his supposed treasures. 

" Give up thy wealth," exclaimed the vizier, " or thy 
head will be the forfeit."—" If my hour is not come," replied 
coolly the old beg, " it is in vain that you menace my life ; 
if you sully your hands with my innocent blood, mine will 
weave you a collar for the last judgment. I am over eighty 
years, and can show as many wounds received for the faith 
and for the empire ; but under a tyrant steeped in blood like 


you, it is better to die than to Uve.^' WiHioat justice to his 
yirtues and without pity for his white hairs, Khosrew inter» 
rupted his reproaches by the order of death. 

At two marches fiu*ther on the defberdar of the army, 
Aboubekre, was murdered and his property confiscated to 
the army treasury. At Serabad, the chief of the Kurds, 
Mir-Mohammed, called before the diran of the vizier, and 
foreseeing the trap, put on a coat of mail under his dothes. 
Khosrew, after having abused him, called the executioner. 
The Kurd, resolved to sell and not to surrender his life, drew 
his sabre to plunge it in the breast of the mnd vizier. 
The kiaya precipitated himself between Mir-M(3iammed and 
the assassin. The sabre of the Kurd cut by the same blow 
the hand off the kiaya and half the wooden post of the tent 
behind which Khosrew took shelter. At the outcry and the 
tumult, the officers of the vizier entered and pierced with 
twenty poinard blows the Kurd, at length floored. His 
suite, who armed themselves to defend him, fell by the 
sabres of the chiaouz. Seven bodies decapitated and piled 
before the door of the tents, attested the ferocity of Khos- 
rew and the fidelity of the Kurds to their emir. 


The Persians, fallen from their heroism on the death of 
their hero, the great Abbas, let the hundred and fifty thousand 
Turks advance at leisure through their richest provinces. The 
magnificent palace of Hassan- Abbas was converted into a heap 
of ruins. Hamadan, the ancient Ecbatan, the capital of the 
first dynasties, the rival of Babylon and of Suza, celebrated un- 
der Islamism for its mosque styled the mosque of '^ the Thou- 
sand and one columns," and for the tomb of the poet Hafiz, the 
Solomon by wisdom, the Anacreon by the voluptuousness of 
his verses, of the Persians, was burned by the grand vizier. 
The sacred domes of the mosques, the palaces, the walls of 
Ecbatan, crumbled beneath the flame, the axe or the ham- 
mer of the Ottomans. They spared not even the trees 
which used to cover with the shade and the fruits of a per- 
petual spring the borders of the rivulets of that delicious 
plain. A cloud of smoke and ashes floating in the air for 
several days above the Temple of Persia, announced to the 
adjacent provinces that the ferocity of. Khosrew spared not 
even nature herself This passage of the vizier is still called 


in the Persian traditions the " visit of the pitiless man." 
Alexander, Genghis and Timonr had not left a trace more 
baleful on the soil and in the memory of Persia. 

Retrograding thence, by order of the Sultana Koesem, 
towards Bagdad, Khosrew and his army crossed the fabulous 
mountain of Baghistan, scene of the immortal loves of Fer- 
had and the beautiful Schirin, the Heloise of the Persians 
wid of the Turks. Respect for the &bulous monuments of 
poetry prevails in the Ottomans over respect for the real 
ones of history. They contemplate with awe the immense 
cliff cut to a precipice by the amorous Ferhad to cut a canal 
which was to convey a flood of milk (the foam of the cas- 
cades) to the feet of his lover. They revere the old pome- 
granate-trees, sprung, according to the poetic fable, from the 
blood of Ferhad. 

The Persian army was annihilated in trying to defend 
this garden of Persia and those tombs of the kings of its 
dynasties. The remnants of it fled for refuge within the walls 
of Bagdad. The best generals of Khosrew and more than 
half his army perished in assaulting them. Bagdad once 
again saved Persia. 

Khosrew, humbled, repassed the Tigris, cutting the 
bridges behind him, and regained, like Hafiz, Mosoul, after 
a month's march, harassed through the desert. His fury, 
on reaching Mosoul, wreaked itself upon the seraskiers and 
the begs accustomed to disturb the army, whom he accused 
of his disasters. He invited them to a banquet, and had 
them slaughtered in a body by the headsmen ouly posted in 
the hall. To repair the losses of the army, he sent for forty 
thousand Crim Tartars, and passed the winter at Mardin 
awaiting them. 


This series of reverses and of atrocities, did not inter- 
net at Constantinople either the fetes or the intrigues of the 
seraglio. The divan was occupied diplomatically with the 
a&irs of Transylvania, of Moldavia and of Wallachia, 
brought up again by the election of the Hungarian magnate, 
Rakoczy, to the tributary throne of Transylvania. Rakoczy, 
after the example of his predecessor, Bethlem-Gabor, aspired 
to the royalty of the three provinces united under the name 
of the loDgdom of the DacL His alternate negotiations 


with Turkey and with Austria, made him at one time the 
client, at another the suspicious ally, and at another the ene- 
my of these two courts. 

The Tartars of the Crimea, at war a moment with the 
Poles and Russians, received orders from the divan to return 
into their steppes and take their troops into Persia, to the 
assistance of Khosrew. This army, slowly formed, and vainly 
waited by the grand vizier at Mardin, caused the second 
campaign of Persia to be postponed to the year 1631. 
Khosrew returned discredited by his inaction to Aleppo. 

Hassan, the favorite of the Sultan and of the Validé, 
obtained the dismissal of Khosrew and the appointment of 
Hafiz-Pasha, former grand vizier. Khosrew, whom his bar- 
rack ferocity and his caresses of the soldiers had made popu- 
lar in the camps, feigned to obey with resignation the orders 
of the Sultan, but fomented secretly an insurrection of 
the troops in his favor. The revolt broke out at Diarbekir 
and at Aleppo. It was propagated across Anatolia to the 
barracks of Constantinople, The rebels raised of them- 
selves their camp, and forced their generals to lead them to 
the capital. Khosrew had proceeded there before them, 
attended only by his nephew and a handful of his partisans. 

At their instigation, the spahis and the Janissaries, 
thronging without chiefs upon the square of the Hippo- 
drome, demanded during three days and three nights the 
heads of the traitors. They designated by name, as being 
such, the grand vizier Hafiz, the mufti Yahya, the defterdar 
Mustapha, the ûivorite Hassan, appointed recently aga of 
the Janissaries, Mousa-Tchelebi, another favorite, all re- 
puted accomplices of the intrigues of the harem against 
Khosrew, and guilty of the reverses of the late Persian 

The harem trembled at their cries. The fourth day, the 
doors of the court of the seraglio, forced by the rioters, de- 
livered the palace itself to their tumult and vociferations. 
They kept in wait for Hafiz, whom his duties were to bring 
at noon to the divan, to immolate him on the steps of the 
palace. Some friends warned Hafiz not to expose himself to 
his enemies. He was already on horseback to visit his post. 
^^Nq," said he, ^'I have seen last night my destiny in a 
dream ; I do not fear to die for my duty." 

The crowd opened and shut presenUy behind him. The 
soldiers hurled him from his horse with blows of stones, tore 


Ilia garments, took off his turban, trampled him under their 
feet, and were going to despatch him, whea his serrants 
wrested him half-naked and bleedmg from their hands, to 
take him to the infirmary of the seraglio. He wiped the 
blood and dust from his face, borrowed a turban of the bos- 
tandjis, and appeared before the Sultan to counsel him to 
yield to the storm and to take back the seal of the empire. 

" Qo, my aga," said the Sultan to him, "and may God 
protect thee I For my part, I can no longer protect any 
one ! " 

Hafiz left the palace by a postern door upon the gardens, 
gained the beach of the sea, and crossed to take refuge at 


The Sultan himself, called upon by the rioters, appeared 
at their cries, on the threshold of the divan door. His yi- 
ziers and servants pressed closely around him. A dialogue 
interrupted by confused clamors was established between the 
nearest of the soldiers and the Sultan. "What do you 
want from your padischah ? " said he to them. — " Seventeen 
heads of your viziers and your favorites," responded the 
rioters ; " deliver them instantly, or think of yoursell" — 
"You are incapable of hearing me," rejoined ^murath, 
stunned with clamors, menaced with gestures ; " of what use 
was it to call me, if not to listen to and to discuss with me ? " 
He turned off with a gesture of despair and indignation to 
avert his eyes from such a spectacle. His pages threw them- 
selves between him and the soldiers and succeeded in shut- 
ting the outer door of the seraglio. 

" The seventeen heads 1 the heads ! the heads I " cried 
with redoubled fru*y the soldiers, "or descend from the 
throne like Othman II ! " 

The councils in the interior of the seraglio participated 
in the trouble and in the terror of the outside. The ene- 
mies of Hafiz had slipped among the viziers. Redjeb-Pasha, 
the most accredited of them, declared to the Sultan, with a 
feigned grief, that from time immemorial, the law, the policy, 
and the majesty, that supreme policy of the Sultans, had 
been to sacrifice the lives of their servants to save the world, 
and that he must imitate his ancestors or expose the padi- 
schah himself to the fittte of Othman II. 


AmuraUi IV., h<^ing still to obtain the pardon of the 
moat cherished of his favorites by his apparent condescen- 
sion to the anger of the day, sent the chief of the bostandjis 
to Scutari to bring back Hafiz to the palace. Hafiz, scarce 
escaped, did not hesitate anew to imperil himself for his 
master. He got into a boat and crossed the channel, urging 
himself the rowers. Arrived at the seraglio by a secret 
inlet, he held himself ready to live or to die at the caprice 
of the fickle rage or the pity of his enemies. 

The Sultan thought, from the silence of expectation of 
the multitude, that its anger slackened or had wearied 
itself in the courts. He ascended his throne in the chamber 
of the peristyle, had the doors thrown open, and ordered 
some of those who appeared to be the tribunes of the sedi- 
tion to approach him in order to hear and report his words 
to their comrades. 

The emotion of the moment, fear for his mother and for 
himself, compassion for Hafiz, who listened concealed behind 
the drapery of the canopy, his paleness, his gesture, his ac- 
cent, his tears, would have given persuasion to his dis- 
course if hatred could ever let itself be persuaded. He 
adjured the troops, he represented to them the remembrances 
and the remorse of the murder of Othman, the dishonor to 
the empire, recoiling upon the throne, upon the army itself, 
from th^e violences done the free volition of the representa- 
tive of tSe khalifs, the inutility of the vengeances which they 
demanded, since he had acceeded of himself to the wishes 
of the ^rmy and the people, by removing his grand vizier 
and disgracing his favorites ; the cowardice, in fine, of strik- 
ing when down the disarmed vanquished, who had but their 
enemies for judges and their enemy's pity for safety. He 
besought them, in the name of his youth and of his future 
renown, not to constrain him to give them innocent blood as 
the price of a reign thus stained with ingratitude and injus- 
tice in thQ eyes of posterity. 

A murmur now favorable, anon sinister, ran at these 
words throi:^h the hall and the courts ; the most contiguous to 
him were affected, the most remote redoubled their impatience 
and imprecations at these delays. Amurath was going to con- 
tinue his vain endeavors ; Hafiz, who judged by me voice and 
the countenances, the inutility and the danger of resistance, 
had just ended in silence the ablutions and prayers for the 
dead; he lifted with the hand the curtain that concealed 


him from the eyes of the crowd. His white beard made him 
known instantly to the soldiers, despite the turban of the 
bostandji. He prostrated himself at the foot of the throne, 
then rising with the elasticity of a man who had fgrmed a 
great resolve : 

" Great padischah," said he to the Sultan with a firm 
Toice, *4et a thousand slaves like Hafiz perish rather than 
a hair of thy head or a golden nail of thy throne ! I only 
implore thee for the sake of thine innocence and thy glory, 
not to strike me thyself or by the hand of any of the servi- 
tors, so that I may die a martyr and not a criminal, and that 
my blood may recoil upon their heads ! I ask for sole favor, 
that mv body be buried at Scutari." Then kissing the 
earth which was going to cover his corpse against the outrages 
of his assassins ; '^ In the name," added he, " of the al- 
mighty and all-merciful God, there is no other power, no 
other mercy than that of God. "We are come from God, we 
return to him." 

After this supreme profession of faith, he rose and pre- 
sented himself with an erect air and a disdainful countenance 
to the blows of the spahis. The sobs of the Sultan, the 
tears of the pages, the downcast head and dismayed physiog- 
nomy of' the viziers, attested the constraint and the shame 
of this accepted sacrifice. Although disarmed, Hafiz laid 
prostrate at his feet, with a blow of the fist dealt upon the 
head, the first of the soldiers who dared to lay a hand upon 
his old general ; the others lifting up at once their sabres 
pierced his body with seventeen wounda A Janissary knelt 
upon the corpse and cut off the head, which he hoisted as 
the trophy of the day to the eyes of the multitude. The 
pages spread a shroud of green silk upon the body to wrap 
it on the bark which was to carry it to the tomb that had 
been promised it at Scutari 

" Infamous and cowardly assassins ! who fear neither God, 
nor Prophet, nor padischah ! " cried Amurath IV., returning 
in desperation to his apartments, ^^ you will experience soon 
or late the just vengeance that awaits you." 

Hassan, aga of the Janissaries, the second victim claimed 
by the rioters, owed his life to the fidelity of a handful of 
Janissaries who defended their general against the assassins. 
The defterdar escaped under favor of the tumult. The dis- 
missal of the mufti sufficed the rancor of the intriguers, who 


had mchided him in the proBoriptioii, in the hope of rudng 
upon his ruins. 


All appeared to be appeased by the blood of the grand 
vizier and by the appointment to the highest dignities of the 
favorites and the instigators of the sedition. Eedjeb-Pasha, 
the adviser of the sanguinary concession, was come to the 
summit of his ambition; he abandoned or prosecuted his 

Khosrew, the principal author or the pretext of all those 
troubles, and who awaited the result at Koniah, was the first 
delivered by Redjeb to the resentment of the harem. Mour- 
tesa-Pasha received orders to take, with it corps of the army, 
the government of Diarbekir, and to execute, in passing by 
Koniah, the just vengeance of the Sultan : '' I want but his 
head,'' said the Sultan ; ^^ his immense treasures are thine." 

Meanwhile, Redjeb had in secret informed Khosrew of 
the danger. Khosrew, shut up in his house at Koniah, sur- 
roundea himself with the band of troops whom he brought 
in his train. Mourteza, having verified to the judges of the 
city the order of death of the faction-leader, commenced to 
demolish his residence by artillery. Khosrew, sick or feigning 
sickness, sent his kiaya, Ali, the Hungarian, to submit m his 
name to the orders of the Sultan, and pray Mourteza to come 
with confidence and communicate them to himself. The chia- 
oux, concealed behind the wall of the court, was to rush upon 
Mourteza, wrest the firman from his hands and massacre hun. 

The executor of the vengeance of Amurath IV. foresaw 
the snare. He remained at the head of his troops, and sent 
the firman of the Sultan by Soulfiker, his lieutenant. Khos- 
rew, abandoned by the people of Koniah, to whom Mourteza 
had promised in ike name of the Sultan a part of his spoils, 
resolved to die with the resignation of defeated crime and 

" Our lives are the padischah's," said he to Soulfiker, 
after having read the firman ; ^' but since the pasha of Diarbe- 
kir had a firman of death against me, why did he not present 
it forthwith ? What was the need of bombarding my house 
and making me pass for a rebel ? God forbid that I should 
be such ! God is all-powerful ; I do not murmur at his de- 
crees : but, please God, vengeance is not distant and many a 
head IS still to fall" 


Having ttus spoken, he said a prayer, implored with tears 
the mercy of €rod and not of men, and held forth his neck 
to the rope. His immense riches and sumptuous equipages, 
amounting to over a hundred thousand ducats in gold, were 
confiscated. Mourteza-Pasha refused, despite the grant of 
the Sultan, to appropriate an asper of them. All was sent 
by him to the Sultan. Amurath IV., in recompense, gave 
him in marriage the widow of Hafiz. 


The execution of Khosrew and the arrival of his trea- 
sures and of his horses afConstantinople, became the signal 
of a new explosion of the troops. The grand vizier, KeiÇeb, 
fearing for himself, had it insinuated to the soldiers that the 
vengeance of the harem was constantly suspended over the 
head of Hafiz's murderers, so long as Moussa the favorite, 
Hassan the aga of the Janissaries, and Mustapha the former 
treasurer, retained the secret favor of the Sultan. At these 
insinuations the shops were closed, the people and the soldiers 
diffused themselves through the streets demanding this sup- 
plement of heads. The masses of snow that fell upon Con- 
stantinople the evening of the first day, served to disperse 
these assemblages. The followmg day, the rioters, collected 
in larger number, inundated the court of the seraglio, de- 
manding with fierce cries the three heads alluded to, and 
under pretext of inquietude for the princes, brothers of . 
Amurath IV., whose life, said they, was menaced by the 
favorites of the Sultan. 

Amurath, drawn, as at the former time, by these outcries, 
from the shade of the seraglio, was forced to present himself 
and to supplicate the midtitude. He swore that he waâ 
ignorant of the retreat where Hassan and the defterdar had 
concealed themselves since the execution of Hafiz. He or- 
dered up the four princes, Bayezid, Suleiman, Kajim, Ibra- 
him, and showed them to the people, to confouna, by their 
presence, the calumny which accused him of having immo- 
lated them. 

" What do you want of us ? " said to the chiefe of the 
sedition the eldest of the captives thus forced by their im- 
portunate protectors from the peace of their kiosKS and the 
anxious tenderness of their mother. " Leave us in peace to 
our retirement : beware of pronouncing our names, for you 
Vol. III.— 11 


wotild thus bring guspicion upon our innocent heads. Haye 
you then no fear of God, no respect for the padischah your 
master ? Heaven will protect us sufficiently without you." 

These reproaches touched the people; the four youths 
were taken back to their kiosks. The sedition appeared 
allayed ; but the grand yizier, Eedjeb, was playing the double 
part of counsellor within doors, and inciter outside. He 
persuaded Amurath lY. to dismiss publicly from the seraglio, 
and under his own guard, the younff favorite, Moussa, in 
order, said he, that this mark of condescension and of con- 
fidence given to the troops miffht convince them of his sin- 
cerity and make them give up demanding the heads of Has- 
san and the defterdar. He made oath to his master that he 
would answer on his head for the life of Moussa and the 
generosity of the people. 

Amurath refused long to expose by this measure the life 
of a friend whom he loved with a passion entertained for a 
brother. The a4vice of the capitan-pasha, son of the hero 
I)janboulad, decided him. He nad more confidence in the 
capitan-pasha than in the vizier. "I consent," said he at 
last, in tears; '^ but remember that you are hostages for my 
friend, and that if a hair should fall from the head of Mous- 
sa, your heads will answer for it" Moussa was delivered on 
the faith of these promises to the grand vizier, who con- 
ducted him to his palace. 

Scarce had he arrived there, than a band of Janissaries, of 
spahis and of populace assembled before the gates of the grand 
vizier, demanding by their vociferations uiat the ûivorite 
should be given up to them. The perfidious Eedjeb appealing 
then to Moussa by him : '< My child," said he with appa- 
rent compassion for his innocence and for his years, " a thou- 
sand lives like thine and mine are nothing in order to save 
that of the Sultan. However let us not despair; I am 
going to see what we can obtain from Uie rebels." 

Then taking along with him the unfortunate youth, as if 
to the end of parleying with the multitude, he ordered in a 
low voice his servants to push him violently by the shoulders 
and precipitate him down the steps of the piazza. The 
young man was received at the bottom on the points of a 
thousand, daggers, which lacerated him to pieces, while the 
astute vizier, affecting a concerted horror, cried to the assas- 
sins : " S£op ! don't you know that I have guaranteed his 
life to his friend ? " 


Hassan, discovered the same day in the chapel of his 
magnificent villa of Rebek, was conducted on a horse un* 
tackled from a Bulgarian wagon, in the midst of jeers, upon 
the place of the Hippodrome, strangled and hung by the 
legs to the branches of a plane-tree, which served as gallows 
for the execution of vulgar criminals, and left during several 
days a sport to children and the populace. The defterdar 
too, discovered some days after by the proscribers, was 
decapitated on the order of Redjeb by the headsman, and 
hung upon the same plane-tree where swung the body of 

Such crimes, tolerated or favored by the grand vizier, 
could be but preludes to the deposition of Amurath IV. and 
perhaps to his execution. Bedjeb had too much offended, 
not to hate him ; he allowed it to be openly proposed to sub- 
stitute him by one of his brothers, who should owe him the 
throne and whose gratitude would ensure his power. 

He purchased his popularitv at the cost of the toleration 
of all the excesses of the multitude and of the troops ; the 
massacre of the generals by the soldiers was become a 
pastime of the barracks. The spahis mocked the djebedjis, 
an inferior regiment who spoke also of strangling and hang- 
ing their aga on a plane-tree. ^' Although your aga be an 
officer of importance in the empire,'' said the Janissaries and 
the spahis to their worthy rivals in assassination, '' he is by no 
means of sufficient dignity to be hung from the same branch 
as Moussa, Hassan and Mustapha." — " Do you think then," 
replied the humiliated djebedjis, '^ that we also are not men, 
and that we are so fsa despised that it will not be permitted 
us to massacre our aga and become, in turn, imposing 

The Janissaries having challenged the djebedjis to this 
crime, too lofty, they said, for them, the djebedjis replied to 
the challenge by running to their barrack and massacring, 
through pure rivalry of atrocity, their aga, the brave and 
virtuous Sahib. The populace, imitating the soldiers, filled 
the city with orgies and tumults. The emulation of anarchy 
raised and prostrated daily, during two months, new tribunes 
of the multitude. The excess of criminality restored re- 
morse to the people, and vengeance for the murder of his 
fiivorite gave the energy of despair to the Sultan. 

His mother, the Sultana Koesem, a Greek by birth and 
character, kept up, from the depth of her harem, secret 


relations with two yiziers of her nation who pofNsessed and 
betrayed the confidence of Eedjeb. These two Greeks, 
elevated by the rebels to the highest dignities of the Porte, 
were the yizicr Boum-Mohammed and the new a^a of the 
Janissaries Koese-Mohammed. The one and the other, with 
the prudence of an ambition which knows how to bound, in 
order to consolidate its fortune, saw more security in the 
gratitude of the Sultana and of her son, saved by their means, 
than in the fluctuating favor of the multitude. Elevated by 
sedition, they wished to confirm themselves by loyalty ; an 
instinctive tactic of intriguers who, after mounting, dread to 
redescend. They kept up a secret correspondence with the 
Sultana Koesem, watching attentively for the hour when the 
disgust of the people and the lassitude of the troops should 
permit the Sultan to strike the anarchy on the head, in his 
grand vizier. 

This hour at length arrived, the Sultana notified her son. 
Amurath lY., animated by vengeance, dissembled to make 
the blow more sure. Redjeb, unexpectedly called to the 
seraglio on the evening of the 18th of May, 1632, after the 
divan, hastened to the orders of his master. Arrived in the 
second antechamber of the palace, the eunuchs opened him a 
low door which gave access into a cabinet where the Sultan 
awaited, he was told, to confer with him alone. 

On entering he saw before him but eunuchs and mutes, 
whose physiognomies and silence made him totter on his 
gouty legs. The curtain separating this apartment from 
that where the Sultan was awaiting rose. Amurath was 
standing at the other ex;kremity of the room ; his resolute 
countenance and his attitude revealed the man who had 
uttered at the age of fifteen this expression, which remains 
a proverb of hatred among the Turks : " Vengeance may 
be adjourned, but does not grow old." 

He recalled, in a collective grievance, from the recesses 
of his implacable memory, all that the perfidious popularity 
of his minister had imposed on him of terror and of outrage 
since his infancy. " Come forward, perfidious cripple," 
cried he with a voice of thunder to the grand vizier, whom 
the gout and consternation were fixing stirless to the cham- 
ber threshold. 

Redjeb stammered excuses and protestations of inno- 

" Hold thy tongue and prepare to die, giaour I " rejoined 


the Saltan ; and turning towards the white eonnchs : ^< Let the 
traitor," said he to them, " be instantly beheaded." The 
executioners were not apprised, for fear of revealing by some 
indiscretion the design of the murder. The white eunuchs 
substituted them, cut off the head of the grand yizier and 
threw the body at the door of the seraglio to the numerous 
retinue of servants, of clients and of accomplices who were 
waiting his exit from the palace. 

The audacity of the vengeance disconcerted his parti- 
sans ; the head stricken, they feare<£ for the members. They 
dispersed in consternation, fancying that they felt already on 
their own necks the cold steel whi<^ had dissevered that of 
Eedjeb. The Sultan, determined this time to reign or to 
die, left no breathing-time to the rebels. Sure of himself, 
of public opinion, of the support of Roum-Mohammed in 
the divan, and of the asa of the Janissaries in the barracks, 
he gave the seals of the empire to an intrepid Albanian, 
devoted to the Sultana Koesem, named Tabinïassi, a man of 
hand of whom the Sultana was the head. He boldly con- 
vened the troops to a general review on the place of the 
Hippodrome, mounted upon a throne erected under the peri- 
style of the mosque, surrounded himself with viziers, with 
pashas, with agas, with judges, with imans, with oulemas of 
influence over the soldiers and over the people, and studying 
from the outset to separate the cause of the Janissaries &om 
that of the spahis, the most discredited of the rebels, he 
courted verbally the former and scolded harshly the latter. 
Then after having caused to be read by the grand vizier a 
decree of reform which restored to the oulemas the places and 
the emoluments of which the spahis had possessed themselves 
against the laws : " If my spahis are docile and repentant," * 
said he, " they will send me some of their irreproachable 
veterans to bear me their excuses and to implore my mercv." 

Addressing himself next to the Janissaries, and affectmg 
to consider them the inflexible columns of the throne, he 
commented to them a passage of the Koran which commands 
Mussulmans to obey God, the Prophet and the Sovereign. 
" The padischah," said he to them, " were he an Ethiopian 
slave, is the shadow of God and the centre of the Divinity 
upon earth ; cease then to transact with rebels and to tolerate 
sedition, so that your padischah may remedy freely the 
calamities of the empire, and that you may, like your fathers, 
vaunt of having well merited of the throne and of the 


Amurath lY . was do less an orator than he was a poet ; 
he sometimes lacked energy, but never dignity nor résolu* 
tion. His words altered the mind of the J anissaries, ea^ 
to wash themselves before the people of all complicity with 
rebels, and all share in the calamities which public murmur 
began to impute to them. ^^ The enemies of the padischah 
will henceforth be our enemies," cried they with one voice ; 
" we swear to protect no longer the rebeb." They sealed 
individually this military oath by an oath more sacred made 
to the mufti upon the Koran. 

The veterans of the spahis, who were called around the 
Sultan to present him the excuses of their corps, feared that 
he would command their execution. Amurath contented 
himself with their terror. " You other spahis," said he to 
them with a smile of disdain, " are a queer body whom it is 
difficult to get to listen to reason and to practise justice ; 
you are forty thousand in the entire empire, and all of you 
claim some crade, while the number of places to be given 
is only five hundred. Your exigencies and extortions have 
disturbed and impoverished thp kingdom. The lure of 
office has increased amongst you the number of bad men, 
who, refusing to hear the words of the sage and senior of the 
troops like you, pass their time in oppressing the people, or 
plundering the pious establishments and in makmg them- 
selves a sad character of tyranny and rebellion." 

The spahis responded : " We do not take the name of 
rebels, we are friends of thy friends and enemies of thy ene- 
mies. We do not approve the license which despises the 
orders of the padischah, but we find ourselves unable to 
check it." 

" You are right," continued the Sultan ; " you are not 
powerful enough against the number of the wicked. But if 
you be sincere in your words, expel them from your ranks, 
cease to demand offices, and swear it on the holy Koran, like 
your brothers the Janissaries." 

The spahis, crushed by the number of loyal Mussulmans 
who seceded from them, and confounded by the words of 
Amurath IV., swore as their comrades had sworn. 

The judges of the army and of the provinces then arose 
with a concerted indignation to draw a picture of the dis- 
orders, the violences and the depredations of the rebels in 
the capital and in the provinces, where the oppression of the 
soldiers took off all authority from justice. 


An Arab, judge of one of the proyinoes of Asia, raised from 
his seat by the portraiture and his resentment of those military 
tyrannies, exclaimed, that he himself had had his house forced 
open and his furniture pillaged, for haying made a decision 
according to his conscience and not according to the barrack 
despotism. " My padischah ! " cried he, drawing his sword 
from the sheath, notwithstanding the presence of the sove- 
reign ; " believe me, the sole remedy for all that, is the 

The Sultan, without gainsaying or blaming him, made a 
sign to him to be calm and to be seated. 

This divan on foot confirmed the coup d'Etat of Amu- 
rath and gave back its nerve to the empire. 


The day following, Amurath IV., encouraged by this suc- 
cess, called to the divan Ahmed- Aga, chief of the spahis, 
and ordered him to designate and deliver up to him the most 
culpable of the soldiers for an exemplary punishment 
Ahmed, having bargained in stammering obedience, was 
beheaded at a gesture of Amurath in open divan. 

One of the most popular tribunes of the revolt, Saka-Mo- 
hammed, called to the palace of the grand vizier, presented 
himself with a retinue of rioters of whom he was the soul, 
and full of confidence in his popularity, wished to discuss 
before the crowd with the vizier. " Stop his mouth with the 
sabre," exclaimed the vizier as reply. 

His head rolled with that of another of the barrack de- 
magogues named Djanin. Their bodies were . immediately 
dragged without honors to the sea. The other chiefs of the 
revolt and of the party, concealed themselves, fled or were 
hanged without a murmur from the people. Nothing is more 
UDgrateful than a sedition when struck with terror ; * after 
ha\ring adored its chiefs as idols, it turns to hate them as 
corrupters. The death of the ass is the fete of the dogsy 
says the Turkish proverb. The rebels of the provinces has- 
tened to convert themselves into informers and executioners 
of their accomplices. They sent to the divan the heads and 
limbs of their leaders in order to save their own. Despot- 
ism found them as base as anarchy had found them insolent. 

* TbAt is to say, lest courtly, that nothing is baser than the multi- 
tude. — Tratulator, 


One of the most potent of the rebel ohiefis, EliAS-Paaha, 
yanquished at Magnesia and besie^d in Pergunos, capitu- 
lated, on condition of preserving his life, his titles and his 
honors, with the generals of Amurath. He dared to come to 
Constantinople on the faith of this anmestj. Amurath 
awaited him in his pleasure palace of Istawros on the bankg 
of the Bosphorus. 

" Giaour," said ho on perceiving him, " why hast thou not 
obeyed me when I sent thee orders to evacuate Pergamus, 
and go serve me at Damascus ? " — " I was sick," stammered 
Elias, in excuse. — ^' Detestable liar," exclaimed the Sultan, 
" thou wast not sick to sack Maraesia, the imperial residence 
of my ancestors. Let the head be cut off this traitor ! " 

A bostandji precipitated himself on the defenceless pasha 
and sawed off his head with his knife. 

Every day of this year was named after the name of an 
illustrious victim. Mahmoud- Oghli, murderer of Hafiz, was 
strangled and thrown into the sea ; Mustapha, the def terdar 
appointed by the rebels, hanged before the door of the bakery 
of the seraglio ; the Pole, Semawski, who was proclaimed 
King of the Moldavians, and who disputed this title with the 
Greek, Elias, protected by the Turks, imprisoned in the 
Seven Towers, then beheaded and thrown into the Bosphorus. 
The rapid current of the Sea of Marmora towards the Black 
Sea, in laving the beaches of Constantinople, threw up nightly 
the dead bornes of Janissaries and spahis, in whom were re- 
cognized with Juddering the fomei^ters celebrated or obscure, 
of recent or of former revolts. During the silence of the 
laws, the treasured vengeance of the Sultan had noted the 
names, the men and the misdeeds ; nothing was fcH-gotten, 
nothing pardoned. He took pleasure in confounding hia 
justice^ his policy and his anger. 

The sole vice with which the Ottomans reproached Amu- 
rath lY., a vice punished by them in his favorite Moussa, 
that Antinous of the Ottomans, was a suspicious friendship 
for the young Greek pages of the court. His mother feared 
less, for her influence in the seraglio, from these favorites 
than from a female rival. 

A tradition, accredited by incontestable historical testi- 
monies, attributes to the fatal example and to the witiy 
repayée of one of the companions of his youth, the change 
which perverted of a sudden at this period the religious 
sobriety of Amurath, and the transformation of his absti* 


flenee from wine into a taste and a habit of dnmkennesa. 
Here is the tradition such as it is reported, from Ottoman 
sources, by the French historian, de Swaberry. 

Mustapha Bekri, grandson of the divine poet of that 
name, was a young courtier, celebrated for his debaucheries 
Mid witticisms. One day, Amurath, in disguise, perceived 
a man lying in the mud ; he took him for a madman ; he was 
told he was only drunk. At the same moment Mustapha, 
Mustapha the drunkard, rose and ordered the Sultan to lie 
down by his side. The arm of Amurath, which was up- 
lifted, fell with surprise at this excess of insolence. 
. " How darest thou," said he, " to utter me an order, me, 
who am the Sultan Amurath?" — "And I," replied the 
drunkard " I am Mustapha-Bekri ; if thou art willing to sell 
thy city, I will be Sultan in my turn, and thou wilt be Mus- 

Amurath demanded where he would find money enough 
to pay for Constantinople. 

" Let not that trouble you," rejoined Mustapha, " I will 
even do more : I will also buy the son of a slave, I will buy 
thee." And thereupon he turned over and went to sleep. 

Amurath had him taken up all covered with mud and 
carried to the seraglio. The frunes of the wine being dissi- 
pated at the end of some hours, Mustapha was astonished 
to find himself in gilt apartments. 

" Is it a dream ? " said he to those around him ; " where 
am I ? in the paradise of the Prophet ? " — " Nothing of the 
kind," he was answered ; " but you have made a bargain 
with the Sultan." 

Mustapha, seized with terror, feigned illness, and said 
that he was going to die if he was not brought some wine to 
revive his spirits. Mustapha concealed the cup of wine 
beneath his robe, when Amurath had him called and sum- 
moned him to pay several millions as the price of the city. 

" Sublime emperor," said the drunkard jovially, in hold- 
ing up the pot of wine, " behold what had yesterday the 
power of purchasing Constantinople ; believe me, if you only 
possessed such a treasure, you would find it preferable to the 
empire of the Universe." — " How so ? " asked Amurath, — 
" By drinking," said Mustapha, " this liauor." 

The Sultan was persuaded, tried the Deverage, and drank 
of it copiously. He soon found himself too straitened by 
the limits of the globe : he spoke no more but of great en- 
VoL. III.— !!• 


tefprises, and experienced a gaiety which seemed to haro 
more charms than the diadem. In fine, he foil asleep ; but 
on awaking some hours after with a yiolent headache, he 
ordered in his anger to have Mustapha called before him. 

'^ Here is a remedy for your illness," said the latter with 
a smile, and presenting him a cup full of wine. Amurath 
drank it o£ The ache vanished, the gaiety returned, Bekri* 
Mustapha became a favorite. What is more astonif^ing is, 
that he was not found unworthy of the dignities wherewith 
he was invested» 


The severities of the Sultan excited the anonymous re* 
prisais and the satirical pamphlets of the voluptuous parti* 
sans of tobacco, of coffee and of wine. ^' Dismiss the eu* 
nuchS)*' said one of these epigrams, " who give us sleepless 
nights, in parading the streets sword in hand and shutting 
our houses to innocent enjoyments, before proscribing the 
negro (it is thus they styled the grain of the coffee), and 
before proscribing the harmless smoke which ascends to 
heaven, and dissipates, tyrant, the acridity of the blood 
which thou dost daily cause to mount from hearts oppressed 
by thy executioners." • 

The imans and the sheiks of the mosques, more daring still 
in their reproaches, scarce disguised them in the very presence 
of the Sultan imder flimsy allegories. To scandalise the peo- 
ple by the contrast between the partial tolerance of great 
vices and the bloody repression of small ones, they recited 
in the pulpit a feble of Nasireddin, the Pilpay, the Esop, 
and the La Fontaine of the Turks. 

" A man," said the Indian fable, ^^ that masked satire of 
despotism, was one day tilling his field by the aid of two 
oxen, the one large and strong, the other small and weak, 
harnessed to the same plough \ the small one not being able 
to co-operate, the laborer wMpped the large.-^" Why do you 
strike the ox that draws," said a passer by, " and spare that 
which refuses to draw ? " — "Because the small one," replied 
the husbandman, " would never be inclined to draw, if it had 

* It is curious to mark this coincidence between the somptaaiy legis- 
lation of an Asiatic despotism in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries 
and that of several of the states of our " model repuUic '* in the nineteenth. 


not along side it the example of the obedience and of the 
efforts of the large one." Strike then the great whom you 
spare, and the people will follow your precepts — such was the 
moral of this apologue. 

This dumb murmur was exasperated by the unjust execu- 
tion of a judge of Nicomedia, whom the Sultan hanged before 
his eyes, on the gate of the city, in his magisterial pelisse 
and turban, because Amurath lY., in going to Broussa, had 
found the road to be ill repaired. The oulemas, offended in 
the person of their colleague, spoke of revolt and of deposi- 
tion in the capital " Quicken your return," wrote to her 
son the Sultana Koesem, who, from the depths of the seraglio 
espied the public rumors ; " there is talk of deposition." 

This message encountered Amurath as he was deer-hunt- 
ing in thef forests of Mount Olympus. Without returning to 
Broussa, he galloped as far as the banks of the Sea of 
Marmora, threw himself into a fishing-boat, despite the tem- 
pest which endangered large vessels, and traversed the Propon- 
tis in a night. Arrived next day without attendance at his 
palace at Scutari, in front of the seraglio, Amurath retem- 
pered his despotic power in blood, and reconquered his liberty 
in vengeance. 

He seemed to respire a new life. His martial activity; 
his address on horseback, his vigor at the djereed, his pres- 
ence in all places, his indulgence towards the soldiers, his 
inflexibility towards the officers, his eloquence at the council 
board, his courage in repressing with his own hand the first 
symptoms of murmur or sedition, his fatalism in defying 
the dagger of the assassins in the tumultuous throngings of 
the soldiers or of the people, contrasted happily with his pas- 
sive indolence in the harem. The boy had disappeared, the 
man was bom; but the man, depraved by the oppression 
which he had undergone, and the precocity of despotism which 
he had been constrained to exercise. Defiance and vengeance 
by turns governed and supplied the laws ; gratitude itself 
imposed no check upon his passions. 

Boum-Mahommed, who had opposed the despotism of 
the throne under Bedjeb, having affected at Aïntab some 
indications of independence, Amurath had him besieged and 
massacred by Yousouf-Deli, pasha of Damascus, a former 
rebel eager to evince his honest zeal against new rebels. 
Yousouf, called soon after to serve at Constantinople, received 
in recompense the death which he had just given to Boom- 


Insorrected Arabia was brought back to sabmiflsion bj 
Koer-Mahmoud, one of those men who had done the most 
towards the deslaruction of anarchy. Twenty thousand houses 
of Constantinople burned in three days and three nights by 
a conflagration naving agitated the capital with a first tremor 
of discontent, Amurath ordered the closing of the cafés, 
those sources and echoes of sedition. He traversed himself 
on horseback during the night the streets of the city, attended 
by a cohort of executioners to pxmish on the spot all infrac- 
tions of this order. 

No sovereign had hitherto repressed more rigidly the use 
of wine. * He sent for the chief of the bostandjis and gave 
him the order, impious according to the Ottomans, to com- 
mand the mufti, the judges of Constantinople and certain of 
the factious leaders, to quit the capital under paiu'of death 
and go in exile to Cyprus. He added a secret order for 
their decapitation, if the next morning with the dawn thej 
had not quitted the city. He recollected that the mufti had 
been with the perfidious Redjeb one of the guarantees for 
the life of his &vorite Moussa, and although the mufti was 
innocent of the disloyalty of the vizier, Amurath was glad 
to sacrifice two victims for the crime of one culprit. 

The night over, he wished to assure himself personally 
of the execution of his order. He crossed the channel of 
Scutari, mounted horse, followed the sea beach along te the 
fortress of the Seven Towers, and encountered on the strand 
the mufti, whom adverse winds had hindered from embarking 
on the vessel which awaited him to take him te Cyprus. 
He affected to see in this obstacle a disobedience to his will, 
had the mufti seized by the bostandjis, thrown into a wagon 
of straw bound for the next village, and executed under his 
eyes in the house of a Janissary of Aga-Stefano. 

The first interpreter of the religious and of the civil law, 
the chief of the oulemas and of the sheiks, was buried in 
the sand of the beach. The magnificent tomb which he had 
built for himself at Constantinople awaited in vain his re- 
mains ] the tomb deceives like life. Thus perished the sage 
Akizadé, guilty of having wrested one day from his sove- 
reign the object of a licentious favor, and above all of hav- 
ing been the chief of the law in times when law had no 
longer an existence. This promptitude in action and this 
obstinacy in vengeance scandalized the public conscience, but 
quelled the public murmurs. 



Amarath prepared himself to conduct in person, after 
the example of Soliman the Great, three hundred thousand 
men into Persia to reconquer Bagdad. The grand vizier 
was already at Aleppo, the base of operations against the 

Seditions over which he triumphed disturbed this first 
assemblage at Aleppo, a city no less turbulent than Damas- 
cus. The aga of the Janissaries was deposed by the émeute, 
and the grand yizier himself assailed with stones in his 
palace. His guards with difficulty saved his life firom the 
first fury of the revolters. The revolt was, however, extin- 
guished in the blood of the guilty; but the chief of the 
chiaoux, who had signalized himself for courage against 
them, perished himself by his fidelity. Accused by the 
grand vizier of an excessive zeal, which displeased the army, 
he was sent back to Constantinople. A chamberlain of 
Amurath awaited him on the route with a firman of death. 
The aga, on sight of the firman, succeeded in softening the 
executioner by demonstrating to him the error of the padis- 
chah ; he obtained postponement of the execution until he 
could have manifested his innocence to the Sultan himself. 

Amurath was as un^ateful and as pitiless as his grand 
vizier. ^^ Infamous liar,^ said he on listening to the justifi- 
cation and contemplating the tears of the ill-requited servant, 
" it is you who prompted the sedition which you afterwards 
fought to quell ; and now you would wish to float uppermost, 
like oil, upon the waves of tumult. Let him be beheaded." 

Before departing for the army, Amurath IV. resolved 
to purge the capital, the provinces and the different army 
corps of all those who had given, during the times of agita- 
tion of his minority and of his weakness, the least symptoms 
of turbulence, of popularity or of connivance at the ill-ex- 
tinguished factions. He wished to leave terror and silence 
to reign in his absence around his mother. 

The Sultan, served in his researches by the zeal of the 
proscribers, did not disdain to pursue himself the victims 
who escaped his spies. The chief of the emirs, AUamé, 
who had been the host of the mufti decapitated on the day 
when the mufti and the oulemas, his guests, had murmured 
too loudly, in the freedom of the festival, trembled through 


fear of inolasion, although innocent, in the proscription list 
Allamé heard himself called one night from the street hy 
his name ; and reoognixm^ the Toice of the Saltan, he came 
down, half-naked and resigned to death, at the order of the 
tyrant The Saltan, on horseback, ordered him, in walking 
on, to relate him the most secret circumstances and dis- 
courses of that fatal banquet Allamé related to him that 
it was but a private and accidental meeting of which tho 
object was to reconcile the mufti with the chief of the emirs. 

During this protracted questioning, Allamé, out of breath, 
kept up with cUfficulty in talking, to the rapid pace of the 
horse. Amurath IV. seemed to enjoy the trepidation of the 
old emir running alongside of his horse, and brandbhed his 
sabre above his head. At last, he dismissed Allamé, grant- 
ing him his life, and recommending to him more care in 
future in his conversations with his suests. 

^^ I am the invisible guest of au my slaves," said he to 
him ; '^ return in peace to thy residence." 

During these executions in Constantinople, the grand 
viiier completed the annihilation in Syria of the domination 
of Fakhreddin, the heroic chief of aie Druses and Maro- 
nites, whose independent empire, created by his ffcnius, ex- 
tended from Tripoli to the confines of Egypt and over the 
two flanks of Mount Lebanon. The agitators of the empire 
had given time to Fakhreddin to enlarge and to consolidate 
his sovereignty. 

Five warlike and industrial races, the Druses, the Moro- 
nites, the Metuolis, the Hebrews, the Arabs of Judea, united 
into one body beneath his hand, equalled at least the force 
of Albania. The bravery of Fakhreddin, his organizing 
genius, his journeys to Florence to ask the alliance and the 
aid of the Medici, his marine, his commerce, the inaccessible 
sites of his fortresses in the valley of Baalbeck imd the 
gorges of Lebanon, his policy, by turns obsequious and me- 
nacmg to the Ottomans between Egypt, Bagdad, Damascus 
and Mount Taurus, made him, although frequently sur- 
rounded by the Turkish armies, the arbiter of Syria and 
the rival of the Sultans. Tripoli, Latakié, Beyrout and the 
ancient Sidon, the modem Ptolemais upon the sea, Baalbeck, 
Jerusalem, Nazareth, Safad, Tiberias, Daïrol-Camar or the 
" convent of the moon," in the inland districts, furnished 
him ports, cities, fortresses, warlike villages, marines for his 
navy, recruits for his army, subsidies for his treasury, skilled 
workmen for his manufactories of silk and of arms^ 


Undecided in religion like all the sovereigns of Lebanon, 
obliged to govern several races with the same sword ; Chris- 
tian with the Christians, Catholic with the Tuscans, Drusian 
with the Druses, Mahometan with the Turks, statesman with 
all, his multiple toleration kept in pacific community those 
populations antipathic in faith. He created in Syria that 
patriotism of the mountains of Lebanon, which sometimes 
rends itself by factions, but which always reunites under the 
great emirs of this country for the common independence. 

The emir Fakhreddin had raised Syria, during a twenty- 
five years reign, to the level of the most flourishing civiliza- 
tions of Europe. Tuscany, his model, and the Medici, his 
allies, did not offer in the plains of Florence, of Pisa and of 
Lucca, the image of a more prosperous agriculture or of an 
elegance of manners more refined. The plain of Beyrout 
and the valley of Bkaa, overlooked by the acropolis of Baal- 
beck converted to a fortress by Fakhreddin, were the gar- 
dens of Asia Minor. We still admire there the ruins, at 
once Moorish and Italian, of the palaces, the villas, the 
fountains, the aqueducts, the roads and the monuments of 
this great heir of the khalifs and of the crusaders, repre- 
sented by the same man. 

On the appearance of the vanguard of the three hun- 
dred thousand Turks whom the grand visier had assembled 
under pretext of a Persian war at Aleppo, Fakhreddin, fore- 
seeing that he would be first to be swept away by this tor- 
rent of men, had insurrected Syria and massacred twenty 
thousand spahis cantoned between Tripoli and Aleppo. At- 
tacked in reprisal of this extermination by the army of the 
grand vizier, he had conquered at Mizereb ; but beaten in 
his turn in the valley of Bkaa, his son was left dead upon 
the field of battle, and he himself, disbanding his Syrian 
levies in a body, fled with the élite of his troops into the 

forges of Upper Lebanon. Pursued as far as those caverns 
y thirty thousand Ottomans ready to bar up his asylum, he 
surrendered himself with two of hia sons to Ahmed-Pasha, 
general of the army of Syria» 

They were sent on to Constantinople, where he died 
without his fame having suffered an eclipse from his misfor- 
tune. His two sons were brought up among the pages of the 
Sultan, to perpetuate in the high dignities of the empire a 
name which was the glory of four distinct people. His 
defeat left Syria without its soul, and the route of Mesopo^ 
tamia open to Amurath IV. 

356 HI8T0BT or TUBKST. 

At the moment when fortune gave him np this iUostrioui 
rebel, the resentment of the Janissaries against another 
ancient rebel, the celebrated Abaza, was avenging him for 
the terrors which this man inspired him with in his infimcj. 
Abaza, as we have seen, had been consoled fbr his loss of 
Erzeroum by the goyernment of Bosnia. The Janissaries of 
hb province, of whom he did not dismise his obstinate 
hatred, conspired his ruin with a powerfiu family of Bosnia, 
the Loboghlis. They fell one day upon him at a hunt and 
wounded him with several blows of a sabre. The intrepid 
and vigorous Abaza defended himself like a lion against this 
pack of assailants, called up his escort, slew with his own 
hand the chief of the Janissaries, Othman, and put the rest 
to flight. 

The murder en masse of the ûimily of the Loboghlis, 
and an impolitic attack at this moment of the Venetian city 
of Zara discontented the Sultan. Abaza was removed to 
the command of Widdin, whither he took with him his troops 
of Bosnia. It was the moment when the Czar of Russia 
solicited the Turks to have the Poles attacked by Abaza, 
while the Emperor of G^ermany, occupied by the revolts of 
the empire, was unable to succor Poland against the Rus- 
sians and Turks united. The Khan of the Tartars with 
Abaza in fact inundated the plains of Kaminiec. 

Abaza, after this dubious expedition, was recalled to 
Constantinople. He was on horseback in the train of Amu- 
rath, the day this prince directed the execution of the mufti 
on the brink of the sea. 

Amurath IV., despite the protestations of the Poles, 
fomenters of the perpetual incursions of the Cossacks of the 
Don, set out himself with the Circassian chieftain and forty 
thousand men for Adrianople. The war, confided anew to 
Abaza, was short and followed by a precarious peace. There 
was no fixed or regular policy in that republic of Poland, 
governed by the constant oscillations of its equestrian aristoc- 
racy and its military demagogues. The ambition of the 
magnates and the turbulence of the camps threw it, ten 
times in the same century, into the alliance of the Turks, of 
the Hungarians, of Q-ermany, of the Tartars, of the Swedes, 
of the Cossacks or the Russians-— equally fickle in war and 
incapable of peace. 

Amurath, remaining at Adrianople to supervise more 
closely his generals, pursued there the course of his tragic 


executions. A young and beantifol Bosniac, son of a Greek 
merchant of that province, named Mustapha, had succeeded 
to Moussa in the heart of the prince. This favorite had 
been in the service of Hassan, pasha of Bosnia, before hav- 
ing fascinated the eyes of Amurath. He wished to efface in 
the blood of his fbrmer master the humiliating reminiscences 
of his primary servitude. Hassan-Pasha, calumniated by 
him, was condemned to death by a secret order. Suleiman- 
Pasha, invested with the government of this province in the 
place of Hassan, was charged at the same time with the exe- 
cution of his predecessor. 

Suleiman set out from Adrianople with forty horsemen to 
fulfil this order. A friend whom Hassan entertained at court, 
named Schaban, learned a day before the departure of Sulei- 
man the object of his journey. He mounted horse and gained 
some hours upon the new pasha. On his arrival at Seraï, resi- 
dence of the governor of Bosnia, he found Hassan attending 
night-prayer in the mosque. He stooped to his ear and said to 
him that his successor and his murderer was at the gates of the 
city, and that he had not a moment to lose if he would escape 
death. Hassan, issuing hastily from the mosque and disap- 
pearing under favor of the night, slipt into the house of his 
sister and concealed himself in female apparel in the harem. 

Escaped thus from the searches of Suleiman, he took 
refuge in a cavern of Mount Arighan in Wallachia. Be- 
trayed by a Walladiian shepherd, who used to bring him 
bread and milk, and perceiving from a distance the soldiers 
to whom the shepherd had shown the cavern, Hassan slew 
him with an arrow and disappeared in the forest, whence he 
succeeded in reaching Constantinople ; he there escaped the 
more easily that he was there less suspected, and there he 
awaited the return of better times. 

Thirty dervishes of Adrianople had posted themselves 
in a defile, through which the Sultan was to pass on his return 
from a chase, with the intention of demanding alms for their 
convent. Their sudden and savage aspect scared his horse ; 
the animal in prancing threw the rider. He .punished this 
accident as a crime, and the heads of the thirty dervishes 
rolled at the instant upon the ground. 

With him death did not await conviction ; suspicion was 
punished before being tried. One of his servants was em- 
paled because a diamond, recovered afterwards, had been mis- 
laid in the palace. One of his pages was strangled, because 


in playing with the Saltan the equestrian game of the djereed, 
the joong man had inclined his body to elude the blow and 
thns bafiled the address of his master. The poet Nefi, the 
Turkish Juvenal, formerly guest and protegee of Amurath, 
adventured to write some satirical verses against the ca!ma- 
kam, Be!ram-Pasha, the Sejanus of this Tiberius ; Beïram 
demanded vengeance of Amurath. 

" I give thee his head, if the oulemas sanction it," said 
Amurath. The oulemas, consulted and being often sufferers 
themselves from the shaifts of the poet, ratified the condem- 
nation. Nefi was sent to execution. He had so inveterate 
a habit of raillery that his last expression was still an epi- 
gram. The aga of the chiaoux, ordered to lead him to tne 
sea shore, the place of execution, had the barbarity to say to 
him on the way : " Follow me, Nefi, we are going to a place 
where thou canst pick up wood to make thy shafts.-:— '^ Cursed 
clown," replied the poet smiling, << dost thou also then dabble 
in satire ? " 

Abaza, on his return from the war of Poland, did not 
escape the envy with which the long favor of that former 
rebel, become the most elegant of courtiers, had inspired the 
caïmakam Beïram and the favorite Mustapha. Abaza, of 
whom the rebellion had been but a glorious fidelity to the 
throne of Othman, found with Amurath the excuse of his 
crime in the motive of the crime itself. The Sultan could 
not hate a man who had agitated for ten years the empire, 
and massacred forty thousand Janissaries to avenge the mur- 
der of a Sultan. 

The renown, the riches, the chivalrous bravenr, the grace, 
the natural éloquence, the adroit adulation, the cultured 
mind of this Circassian, rendered him the Alcibiades of the 
Ottomans. The Sultan never went out on horseback with- 
out being attended by Abaza. His horses, his arms, his 
equipage, his costume served as models for the youth of the 
armies. The rumor ran that Abaza would receive the com- 
mand of the army of Persia, and that he promised to con- 
quer Iran in one campaign. 

So much presumption and so much ûivor hastened his 
fall. The favorite did not forgive him his severities in Bos- 
nia against his ûtmilj, of whom Abaza had coveted the 
wealth. He was besides accused of having received large 
presents from the Armenians, for getting these Christians 
the exclusive possession of the holy sepulchre of Jerusalem. 


Abaza, familiarly questioned as to the sum of the present by 
Amurath, dissembled as to the amount. Amurath did not 
pardon him the lie. It was suggested to him that Abaza 
thus dissembled the enormous treasure which he had accu- 
mulated in his palace of the Bosphorus, but to defray a 
second rebellion against him. These suspicions worked to 
frenzy the mind of the Sultan. He rode out before dawn, 
attended by the chief of the bostandjis, to exhale his anger. 
In following the narrow beach of the sea, which serves as 
road in front of the village of Beschiktasch, now the palace 
of the Sultans, he found the way blocked up with an ox- 
wagon, driven by a Bulgarian peasant Amurath pierced 
him with an arrow ; the wounded peasant .fell beneath the 

" Go cut off his head," said Amurath to the bostandjl 
The aga, more humane than his master, ran towards the pros- 
trate peasant, and feigning to believe him dead in order to 
save his life, he returned without having drawn his sabre, 
towards the Sultan. " Long life to Your Majesty," said he 
to him, " the insolent soul had fled the body as soon as your 
arrow had touched it." 

Amurath came back more thoughtful to the porch of 
Saint-Sophia. There, without dismounting, he sent the 
aga of the bostandjis, Djoudjé, to order secretly the caïma- 
kam Beïram, who was holding the divan in this portico, to 
have massacred all the Armenian corrupters of Abaza, who 
were on that day to present themselves at his audience. 

Djoudjé, in order not to be recognized by the Armenians 
who were already besieging the gates, took off his costume 
of aga of the bostandjis in an adjacent guard-room, and 
entered the portico in the garb of a private soldier of the 
army of Boumelia. The caïmakam recognized him in the 
disguise and made him a sign to approach : <' What is there 
new ? " asked he by gesture in the language t)f the mutes, 
known in the seraglio-—" Great anger of the master," replied 
in the same language the bostandji. Then he communicated 
the order of death against the Armenians. The caïmakam 
and the judges of the divan shuddered, but obeyed. The 
heads of the principal Armenians were sent to the seraglio. 

Abaza arrived there at this moment by order of the Sul- 
tan, to accompany him, as usual, in his rides. Amurath 
ordered that he be shut up in the coop of the seraglio. He 
next wrote a firman of death and sent it by Djoudjé to his 


old favorite. Abaza, iû gaiing on the firman, bowed the 
head. " It is the will of my padischah," said he, and he 
knelt to say a prayer. His head fell without a murmur at 
the last verse of the soura of the dead. The hand of a 
Saltan punished him for all the blood whioh he had spilt for 
the supremacy of the throne. 


Immediately after this execution, Amurath lY., of whom 
the tents were already dressed at Scutari in the midst of two 
hundred thousand men, set out for Persia. 

The terror of Constantinople had passed with him into 
the army ; its discipline, cemented momently and in all the 
grades by blood, strewed dead bodies on the route of the 
army. The slightest fiiult was mortal. The executioners 
entered before him every city to purge it of the last sedi- 
ments of the old revolts spared by Khosrew or by the grand 
vizier. Amurath, mute, would order before him the chiefs 
of the cities or of the tribes, and his two fin^rs of the right 
hand lifted or shut indicated without words to the execu- 
tioners the life or the death of the suspected. Outside the 
gates of the city were ranged the corpses of the executed, 
an avenue of terror along which he marched the troops. 

All offences and crimes were equal before the sabre. At 
the prairie of Trumpets, Gourdji-Othman, chief of a numer- 
ous cavalry brought to the Sultan, was murdered foï having 
formerly partaken in the murder of Othman ; a feudatory 
tschaousch, Djeaherizadé, for having smoked a handful of 
. tobacco leaves ; at Cesarea, the town judge, for a slight ne- 
glect in the supplying of provisions. 

The bodily strength and savage energy of the young Sul- 
tan recalled their ancestors to the Turcomans of Oaramania, 
who witnessed his march through their natal valley. At 
Dewli-Kara-Hissar, a wild goat of colossal stature having 
rushed upon the horses of his travelling-carriage, Amurath 
leaped from the vehicle upon his horse, encountered the sav- 
age animal and prostrated him with a blow of his club. 
" The hand of €rod is with you," cried the army, astonished 
at this athletic exploit. 

Encountering a little after Mustapha-Pasha, the giant of 
the army, he lifted him out of the saddle on his outstretched 


arm, and held him a moment suspended like a plaything in 
his iron hand. 

The grand vizier, Mohammed-Pasha, came forth to meet 
him at Sinorowa and preceded him to Erzeroum. His entry 
into this frontier capital recalled the marches of Timour or 
of Alexander. Three hundred thousand men, cavalry or in- 
fantry, bordered the road on each side for the space of six 
leagues before the gate of the city. The following day, he 
received with great pomp the presents of all the chiefs of 
the army, of all the pashas and all the tributaries jealous of 
surpassing one another in devbtedness by the prodigality of 
their tributes in men of arms, in slaves, in horses and in 
coined gold. 

A few marches brought this multitude before the walls 
of Erivan, the nearest fortress of the Persians. A cloud of 
dust, raised by those myriads of men and horses and kept up 
by the wind, concealed from them the ramparts of Erivan. 
The artillery of the city cleft of a sudden this cloud, and the 
bullets ploughed the earth at the feet of the horse of Amu- 
ratL " What do you fear," said he to his viziers ; " can a 
man die before the day appointed him by destiny?" A 
trite but just expression of Napoleon to his soldiers, of 
Caesar to his rowers, and of all the fatalists. 

He disposed his troops, and harangued them chief by 
chiefl " Thou," said he to Ahmed-Pasha, governor of Erze- 
roum, " it is nothing to have captured Elias the rebel, and 
forced Fakhreddin in his caverns of Lebanon ; here is the 
day to show what thou art ! " 

" Thou," said he to the son of Djanboulad, " thou, son 
of him who was justly styled the heart of steel, show to-day 
that thy soul is of the metal of thy father's, so as to consum- 
mate thy tièle to the viziership." 

" Thou," aga of my Janissaries, " listen attentively : The 
condemnations in the capital, the chastisements inflicted 
upon drunkards and tobacco-smokers are not exploits of 
heroes ; here is the moment, here the ground, whereon to 
show another courage than that required in police punish- 
ments. I mean myself to show mine, and to see in the 
midst of the conflict how my agas make my Janissaries 

" And you, my wolves," said he to the soldiers, " take 
earo not to retreat ; do not weary of striking, of killing, of 
cutting off heads, and of picking up balls to be sent baâ^to 

262 mSTOBT OF tubket. 

ike Persians ; unfold your pinions, whet your talons, my fal- 
cons, my eagles ! and fetch me your prey ; here are heaps of 
parses of gold to pay you for the heads you shall cast at my 

Eight days of siege exhausted the courage, the provisions 
and the munitions of Erivan. The soul of Schah- Abbas 
had departed from Persia. The actual ruler was his grand- 
son, Sam-Schah, son of that miraa, whom Schah- Abbas had 
formerly sacrificed to his suspicions, and to whom, in dying, 
this faâier, tortured by remorse, had desired, against the 
wishes of the magnates, to restore the throne. 

Sam-Sdiah, still a youth, had distinguished himself thus far 
but by the murder of his favorite Sultana, of his mother, and 
of those of his viziers who reproached lum with his vices. 
His ffenerals trembled to conquer as much as to be con- 
<|uered, not knowing if victory would less endanger their 
life than defeat. jSl that was not servility was discourage- 
ment and treason in the kingdom. The Khan Emirgoune, 
formerly mirsa and military favorite of the great Abbas, was 
ashamed to serve so infamous a master. He meditated 
abandoning him to his &te, and providing an independent 
fortune for himself. He did enough for the honor of arms, 
not enough for the safety of Persia. The eighth day he ap- 
peared, after having given and received hostages, in the camp 
of Amurath, to treat for his defection. His generals, who 
accompanied him, carried their sabres suspended around the 
neck. Amurath arrayed him with three caftans of honor. 

" Why, for three moons back tiiat I tread with my sol- 
diers the soil of your king, does he keep himself concealed 
like a woman ? " — " My padischah," replied Emircoune, " it is 
because your sword has the blade of death and that your 
courser is of noble blood." Emirgoune, recompensed for 
these flatteries and for his defection, received the title of 
pasha and the government of Aleppo. The Persian army, 
which left Erivan under the faith of a capitulation and an 
amnesty, was annihilated some days after by the pashas of 
Damascus and of Caramania. 

The joy of this victory gave to Amurath the audacity of 
a crime which he as yet hîwi not dared to execute upon the 
son of his father. Two of his favorites, bearing secret fir- 
mans, set off for Constantinople with the order to strangle 
the two princes Bayezid and Suleiman. The horror of this 
crime was mingled in Constantinople with the festivities of 


Tiotorj, and threw ihem into consternation. The yictims 
were the hope of a milder reign. 


The courage of Amurath IV. seemed to equal his cruelty. 
He was the first to plunge into the Araxes on the passage of this 
river, and his horse almost submerged by the waves attained 
the opposite bank but through the devotedness of some sol- 
diers who swam to hold its head above the water. He broke 
in himself by axe-blows the gates of Djewres, constructed of 
a wood so thick and so hard that the catapult was deadened 
upon it. Tauri^ thus without defence, opened before him 
and became a heap of ruins. 

Winter brought back to Constantinople Amurath, impa- 
tient to triumph in the eyes oi his subjects. This triumph 
was but a series of executions. Blood stifled each day the 
murmur excited by bloodshed. The interpreter of the am- 
bassador of France was executed, for having fomented the 
pretensions of France against Austria for the exclusive pro- 
tection of the Holy Places. The Greek patriarch was taken 
off from his church and martyrized by night in the fortress 
of the Seven Towers, for having corresponded vrith the Rus- 
sians, and for having exposed the intrigues of the Jesuits, 
who were favored by Spain and by France. A partisan of 
the Jesuits, named Oarfila, purchased for fifty thousand 
piasters the office of patriarch. 

The caïmakam Beïram, in recompense for the murder of 
the two princes strangled in the seraglio, was appointed 
grand vizier. Amurath wished no longer for servants but 
for accomplices. Before departing again for Persia, he 
caused to be sacrificed to his security, the seventh of his 
brothers, the young Sultan Kazim, guilty of having given, 
as he grew up, the hopes of a better future to the people, and 
left alive but one of the children of his father, the last and 
fragile germ of the dynasty. 

Tranquil as to what he was leaving behind him, he joined 
the 23d February, 1638, the innumerable army encamped at 
Scutari. He issued from the seraglio and entered Scutari in 
the costume of an Arab warrior of the times of fable, an- 
terior to Mahomet. Hb horse was mailed with iron; he 
wore a helmet of polished steel, enwreathed with a red shawl, 

264 HI8T0BT or TUBKIT. 

rolled torban-wise, and with the two ends floatmg over hia 

A month after, the army advanced bj a hundred and ten 
marches upon Bagdad. The whole empire in arms seemed 
to follow the Sultan. His executioners ensanguined all the 
stations of the army, as in the former campaign. Innocence 
did not save from the capricious cruelty of t£e Sultan. At 
Nicomedia a courier from Constantinople overtook him, to 
announce the birth of a child of which his favorite slave 
was just delivered. The courier, who was ignorant of the 
sex of the inûtnt, having had the temerity to say that it was 
a son, and having been belied by another letter, was empaled 
for this obliging error. 

At Synada, of which the speckled marble passed for 
having been colored by drops of the blood of Atys, he put 
to death the judge of the city. At Akschyr, the country of 
the fabulist Nasireddin, he wrote some verses on the waU of 
a cloister, on the brink of a fountain of which the murmur 
used to inspire the Turcoman Esop. At Ilgoun, he ordered 
to be flayed alive a dervish reputed invulnerable by his fol- 
lowers, and who had formerly raised a faction in those moun- 
tains. " Don't be in a hurry," said the dervish martyr to the 
executioner who was striving to shorten his sufferings. 

At Koniah, having gone out at night, according to his 
usage, in disguise to observe the order or the disorder of the 
camp, he recognized in the chief of the police Khosrew, a 
former porter of the factious vizier Redjeb. The Sultan had 
not seen his face since the seditions that oppressed his in- 
fancy. The remembrance awakened his vengeance; he 
threw involuntarily a mortal look at Khosrew. This per- 
son perceived it, and confided hiâ terror to a page, thé son 
of Fakhreddin, who was talking with him at this moment. 
A few hours after the encounter, he received, in fact, an order 
to present himself in the tent of the diief of the chiaoux. 
He went there with arms under his clothes. On entering the 
tent, the chiaoux upon guard did not return his salute : this 
sinister symptom confirmed the presages of death which he 
had conceived. At the moment when the aga of the chiaoux 
was ordering his execution, he stabbed him with a poniard, 
cleft with his sabre the cloth of the tent, and escaped amid 
the darkness of the night 

The emir of the Druses, who had succeeded Fakhreddin, 
was decapitated as he stooped to kiss the feet of the padis- 


ohah. At Aleppo, the gorernor of Kara-Hissar, who had 
taken off from the salihdar a young Greek of famous beauty, 
expiated by his life this rivalry wim a favorite of the Sultan. 
At Nizibe, the same salihdar, having maliciously accused the 
fsunous physician of Amurath, Emir-Tchelebi, of preparing 
qpium for his patients, and of making use himself of that 
intoxicating preparation to excite his imagination, the Sultan 
asked of a sudden his physician to show nim the packet of 
pills which he carried between his clothes and his skin. 
" What is that ? " said he to him in pointing to the packet. 
" An innocent preparation of opium," replied Tchelebi. 
" Very well, if it be innocent, take it off in my presence," 
rejoined Amurath. 

Emir-Tchelebi swallowed a few of the pills and shut the 
packet, saying to the Sultan that what was harmless and even 
useful taken in a small dose became deadly poison in large 
quantities. But the tyrant, equally facetious and cruel, 
ordered his physician to swallow all, and to hinder him from 
neutralizing the venom by an antidote, he proposed to him a 
game of chess, and observed with a ferocious attention the 
progress of the poison upon the countenance and in the intel- 
lect of his victim. At the third game of chess, Emir-Tchelebi, 
succumbing to the lethargy, was taken off dying to his resi- 
dence. His attendants proposed to him in vain th^ proper 
restoratives. - " No," said he ; " under a master like ours, and 
with enemies such as the salihdar, it is better to die once 
than to live threatened with a daily death." He had an 
iced sherbet brou^t to him of which aie cold made the opium 
mortal, and expired. 

At Biradjik, the Sultan crossed the Euphrates on bridges 
of boats, and had the army followed by a flotilla of eight 
hundred barks laden with siege artillery and with provisions. 
He there ordered to be crushed with mallet blows the hands 
and the feet of some Arabs found smoking tobacco. 

At Mosoul, an Indian ambassador brought to Amurath 
the felicitations and the presents of his sovereign. Among 
the presents was admired a cincture of precious stones, of the 
value of fifty thousand gold ducats, and a buckler reputed 
impenetrable to the arrow and the sabre. It was formed of 
the ears of elephants and of the hide of the rhinoceros. 
Amurath, to test his own force and that of the armor, struck 
the buckler wiib the e<^ of his battle-axe and deft it with 
Vol. m,— 12 


the blow. He sent it baok (xmtemptaoiisly to the soverêiga 
of the Indias. 

The hundred and ninetj-seventh day afiber its departure 
£rom Constantinople, the army descried the ninety-seven 
towers of one of the sides of Bagdad and the walls of tea 
thousand paces or of five leagues in circumference which sur- 
rounded the city of the Khal^ Amurath's tent was planted 
in front of the great Iman, a saintly tomb upon a hill on the 
banks of the Tigris. The dust that rose the following day 
from the excavation of entrenchments by three hundred 
thousand men obscured the air. Each of the viziers and of 
the pashas received orders to attack one of the gates of Uie 
fortifications of the besieged city. The emulation of glory 
and of reward doubled the ardor of the troops. The SchsSi 
of Persia, Sam-Schs^, approached to relieve the place. The 
first shock on the banks of the Tigris was terrible to the 
Turks. Amurath scolded the grand vizier for his slowness 
in filling up the trenches and ^ving general assault. 
" Would to God," replied Taïar-Pa^a, " it was as possible 
for you to take Bagdad as it is for me to die to serve you 1 " 

He ordered the assault for the following day. Three 
hundred thousand men preparing for victory or death filled the 
night air with the murmur of pravers arising from the camp. 
At the ^wn of day, the cry otAUah kêriml <jk)d is great t 
gave the signal for escalading at all the breaches. The army 
mounted like a tide firom the trenches upon the walls. 

The grand vizier, with death before him on the ramparts 
and deam behind him in the tent of Amurath, was fighting, 
sword in hand, in the broadest breach, when a ball passed 
through his head from the forehead to the nape, and laid him 
lifeless in the arms of his soldiers. His body was reclined 
upon the edge of the trench to preside still, althou^ dead, 
over the battle which he had engaged in. '^ The bird of his 
soul," says the Turkish historian Naïma, translated by Ham- 
mer, ^' flew off from its terrestrial cage into the rosy bowers 
of paradise ; he had been happy in me, a martyr in death, 
this supreme happiness when it obtains us paradise 1 " 

" Ah ! Taïar," cried the Sultan, on learning the death of 
his grand vizier, ^' thy life was more precious to me than a 
thousand towers like those of Bagdad." Then turning to- 
wards the capitan-pasha Mustapha, and delivering him the 
seal of the empire with the command of the assault: 
" Come," said he, " show thyself worthy of my confidence, 


«nd demote for me thy life ; it is thou who art to conquer me 

The army, a moment suspended in its onset by the death 
of the vizier, rushed upon the steps of his successor with the 
unanimous cry of fatality : " Who knows the day of death ? " 
Before the smoke of the ramparts had been dispelled by the 
wind which follows at noon the current of the Tigris, the 
two hundred towers of Bagdad, breached by the cannon of 
the Turics, were evacuated by the Persians descended into 
&e city. 

An honorable capitulation was signed between the khan 
who commanded in Bagdad and the Sultan. '^ Let every one 
retire at his will from the city," said' Amurath, in receiving 
the keys on a salver of gold. But the soldiers, animated to 
take vengeance for the large number of their dead, did not 
ratify this magnanimity of their padischah. Under pretext 
that the Persians had themselves recommenced the combat 
in the city, they massacred, pillaged and burned for the rest 
of the day the inhabitants and the prisoners. Deaf to the 
voice of the viziers and of the pashas, they did not listen 
even to the reiterated orders of the SultaH. 

The melee was so confused and the massacre so furious, 
that Amurath, to get intelligence of what was passing in the 
city, was obliged to send on horseback a Tartar boy from 
among his pages, at the risk of his life, into the midst of the 
tumult. The youth reported to him that the Persians, hud- 
dled up in a confused multitude within the tower and towards 
the gate ''of Darkness," were defending themselves des- 
perately, and that the salihdar and several pashas fell dead 
or wounded by their hands. The Sultan sent the heavy ar- 
tillery which had been cast at Biredjik ; the tower of the 
gate " of Darkness " fell before those enormous bullets. 

Thirty thousand Persians, remains of the eighty thousand 
which had formed the garrison of Bagdad, escaped by this 
gate, crossed the river, scattered themselves some among the 
reeds of the Diala, others in the caverns of ihe rocks of 
Scherban, where they perished by the sabre of the Egyp- 
tians sent in pursuit of them. The fortress, which con- 
tained the magazine of Bagdad, was engulfed in the explo- 
sion of the powder. Eight hundred buffaloes of the army 
which pastured on the glacis, strewed with their mangled 
limbs the roofs and the streets of the city. 

Amurath was pleased to see a treachery in this accident. 


He ordered, under pain of deaUi, all the inhabitania of Bag- 
dad who lodffed a Persian in their houses to massacre their 
gaeet He himself, mounted on a throne on the brink of 
the Tigris, had brought before him one thousand Persians 
disoovered in the city, accompanied each by a tschaousch 
appointed for his executioner. At a motion of the Sultan, 
the thousand heads rolled off together beneath the thousand 
sabres on the bank. Forty thousand other heads of Per- 
sians, immolated by the fimaticism of religion, of race and of 
yengeance, strewed the route of Amurath on his departure 
from Bagdad. He left there a Turkish garrison of ten thou- 
sand men, under command of Hassan the Little, aga of 
the Janissaries. No battle eyer cost the Persians so much 
blood as this shameful capitulation of Bagdad. Courage 
spares nations more blood than does cowardice. 

Amurath, on quitting Bagdad, addressed an insulting 
challenge to the âchah <^ Persia by way of farewell '^ If 
thou art a man, show thyself," said he to him ; '^ it does not 
become those who arrogate the throne to remain hidden 
behind their walls; he who fears the horse ought not to 
mount him ; he who is dazzled by the glare of steel ought 
not to gird on the sabre ; what has been written from all 
eternity always ends with being accomplished." 


The return of Amurath IV. to Constantinople recalled 
the entry of Mahomet IL into that capital He brought 
back to the Ottomans pride, yengeance and the keys of the 
second holy city, the rampart of the faith and of the empire. 
His mother, the Sultana Koesem, who had accompanied him 
as his guardian genius through the whole campaign, preceded 
him in a grated yehide of which the wheels were sUyer, fol- 
lowed by eleyen other wagons bearing the harem. The yizi- 
ers and the oulemas, mounted on horses of parade, preceded 
and followed the Sultana. Amurath, surrounded by fifty 
khans of Persia, chained at his side to his stirrup, came 
after, clad in Persian armor and his shoulders coyered by the 
skin of a leopard, such as Alexander is represented after the 
conquest of Babylon, that Bagdad of antiquity. 

He was bringing back not only conquest, but peace signed 
by the grand yizier Mustapha. The Porte in this wise 
treaty had retrocedod Eriyan in exchange for the renuncia- 


tion by Persia of her rights to Bagdad. The ca!makain 
Mohammed, who had goTemed with so much probity and 
honor the capital daring the absence of the Sultan, was 
strangled for recompense. The pretext for his death was 
his removal of Mathias Bessaraba, waywode of Wallachia. 


Glory and peace gave back Amnrath IV. to the vices 
that sallied his youth before the heroic epoch of his life. The 
Persian, Emirgoune, had succeeded in his favor to Abaza. 
The refinements of luxury and of sensuality of the palace of 
Emirgoune made Amurath a frequent visitor. The vile de- 
baucheries, the frequent drunkennesses enervated in a few 
months the strength which the fatigues of two campaigns had 
not impaired. A deadly languor assailed him at the age of 
thirty-one. In the fits of his last fever, he sent the order to 
strangle Ibrahim, the last of his brothers, preserved hitherto 
fi*om his jealousy by the Sultana Koesem. The Sultana di- 
rected to answer that the order was executed, but Amurath 
demanded to see the corpse. 

As obedience was eluded under various pretexts to tibiis 
order of a dying man who would drag his successor along 
with him into the grave, Amurath sat up in the bed to go 
himself and make sure of the execution of his father's child. 
His strength failed him rather than his cruelty, and he sunk 
back exhausted in the arms of the salihdar. His last word 
was the impotent order of a crime ; he died in the belief 
that it was accomplished. 


If he had not been a tyrant, he would have been a great 
man. The hero and the hangman were mingled in his nature. 
His cruelties were provoked by the anarchy of the Janissa- 
ries and the spahis, who had tyrannized his infancy, dishon- 
ored and oppressed the nation. It is the usual misfortune of 
military dominations which have to call in one tyrant to ex- 
terminate a thousand. 

His physiognomy towards the close of his life had con- 
tracted the ferocity of his reign. The Persian poets of his 
times portray him under the lineaments of an antique 
wrestler with short legs, burly bust and limbs knotted by 


colossal articulations. *' His hur,*' saj tlioj, '' and beard 
were black and thick, his eyebrows threw a sinister shade 
upon the eyes, which glared with a fickle flame; two deep 
wrinkles between the eyes seemed to brood upon thoughts 
constantly strained, like a bowstring about to propel the 
arrow of death ; thousands of heads rolled at his word upon 
the dust ; his robust arm hurled darts as far as a musket 
does the baU ; the djereed, hurled by his hand, transpierced 
planks of two fingers in thickness ; his pleasures were savage 
and cruel like his character ; he hunted with thirty thousand 
bush-beaters, who started deer, wild goats and wild boars 
before his horse. 

'^ As at the approach of the storm the birds are silent 
and hide under the foliage, so every thing stood mute upon 
his terrible appearance. The necessity of using no other 
expression than signs in his presence," add the Ottoman his- 
torians, describing a symptom of tyranny which Tacitus 
might have envied, " carried under his reign the language of 
mutes to its perfection. The winking of the eyes, the im- 
perceptible movement of the lips, the clatter of the teeth or of 
the fingers became substitutes for speech; all was reserve, 
in sentiments and impressions, lest the secret of terror or of 
horror should escape the souL" 

The '^ Old Man of the Mountain '^ was not served with 
more devotedness and promptitude. One day as he had 
dropped from the balcony of the seraglio a paper which slipped 
from his hands, and as his pages were rushing emulously down 
the stairs to rescue the leaf from the wind, one of them, to 
arrive first, leaped into the court and broke a leg, but brought 
back the paper. This zeal unto death won him the attention 
of Amurath, and elevation to the first dignities of the empire. 

His severity, at first just and politic, had ended by de- 
generating into frenzy. Some women whom he encountered 
dancing and singing to amuse themselves in the meadow of 
"Fre^ Waters," one day that he was melancholy, were 
drowned to punish them for their joy when the Sultan was sad. 
The son of one of his pashg^s, whom he chanced to perceive 
from the windows of one of his kiosks passing on horseback 
too near the walls of the seraglio, was killed by an arrow from 
his hand. A boat, laden with women, which sailed before 
the gardens, was sunk by a cannon shot, for some offence of 
the rowers. A favorite musician was strangled for having 
chanted Persian music. 


One of his Italian contemporaries, who resided at Con- 
stantinople, asserts that Amnrath read assiduously Machi- 
avel, to perfect himself in the theory of tyranny. His 
favorite axiom, " Vengeance may grow gray, but does not 
grow old," was a spontaneous inspiration anterior to his 
knowledge of the theories of the Florentine statesman. 
The tyrant like the poet is born ; nature is followed and not 
learned. Amurath TV, had no need of a teacher to hate and 
to avenge. His entire reign was but one vengeance; he 
found his policy in his resentments.^ 


The luxury of the empire under his reign equalled the 
Persian ostentation of the Greek monarchs of the Lower 
Empire. His stables, of which the mangers were of massive 
silver, and the halters chains of the same metal, contained 
no fewer than nine hundred saddle-horses for his use. Each 
of these hunters, coursers and war-horses, had his history and 
his genealogy ; race is the nobility of animals. Eight hun- 
dred dray horses carried the baggage of the emperor on his 
campaigns or in his journeys to Adrianople. Five thousand 
camels were kept always ready to transport his court equi- 
page. Six hundred were laden with the cash treasury that 
followed the army. Eight himdred mules carried his slaves 
and his tents. Each of the pages of his seraglio had thirty 
riding horses for his sole use. 

The Persian monarchs of the heroic ages did not dazzle 
Asia with a larger army of domestics, of courtiers and musi- 
cians. The sages of the empire foresaw in these things its 
decline. Amurath IV. himself permitted that this luxury 
should be reproved in every other than the sovereign. A 
philosophic statesman of his divan, Gourdjali, the Montes- 
quieu of the East, wrote under his eyes, and dedicated to 
himself a book remaining monumental on the Decadence of 
the Ottomans. The counsels which he gives in this book to 
the Sultan, are confined in general to carrying back the State 
to its ancient manners, and to presenting as the " perfection 
of reason," the old vices of the Turcoman usages. Few men 

* So did also, the author should have added, the Turkish Empire 
find in them its rescue from anarchy and dissolution. For such is the 
trae moral of tiiis, like other tjnrannies. — Tran^ator, 


are sufficiently free from the prejudioes of their eonntry to 
escape the narrow horizon of their time and of their race. 

The two only nseM adyices which Groordiali gave to 
Amorath in his treatise on the Decadence, and which were 
adopted by the Sultan, was the necessity of reforming the 
too abusive independence of the pashas in the administration 
of their proTinces, the augmentation of standing armies well 
disciplined and paid, carried under this reign to two hundred 
thousand men, and the creation of model troops chosen from 
among the Janissaries to afford a type and pattern to the army. 
These two institutions of Amurath lY. retarded the effects 
of the decline ; but this violent restoration of the authority 
of the Sultan by terror and not by virtue,* was cemented 
only by blood. 

* l^oetiyl ' nonsense! 'Viitae among wolves I Moderation with 
barbazians I Reason with the rabble 1 — Tramlator, * 



Two women, and a prince in his adolescenoe affrighted to 
stupor, inherited this empire, of which the springs just 
strained to tyranny were going to be relaxed to licentious- 
ness by the death of the tyrant. 

The first of these women was the Sultana Koesem or 
Validé, widow of Achmet L, mother of Amurath IV., Greek 
by race, an imperial nature of whom beauty, fecundity, genius, 
ambition justified by talent, had made the veritable empress 
of two reigns, and who alone was capable of governing the 
third under the name of the feeble Ibrahim. The second 
was the Sultana Tarkan, Greek also by birth, brought up 
with predilection by the Sultana Koesem, to be the favori te 
of her son, given as only wife to Amurath by his mother ; 
mistress for some time of the heart of this prince, neglected 
afterwards, always honored, unfavored by nature with either 
the greatness of mind or the superiority of character of her 
mother-in-law, enslaved by policy and by filial habit to the 
will of this able woman, and disposed to let her continue 
under the new reign the omnipotence which she had wielded 
over the preceding. She was the mother of an infant scarce 
out of the cradle, named Mohammed. 


Ibrahim, last son of the Validé, to whom reverted the 
throne by the death of Amurath IV., and who owed, as we 
have seen, his life to the protection and daring artifice of 
his mother, was but a pliant plaything in the hands of this 
Sultana. Brought up in the solitude of the harem, aspiring 
but to be forgotten, witness of the successive murders of his 
idiot uncle, Mustapha I., and of four of his brothers, immo- 
Vol. III.— 12* 

274 mSTOBY OF tttrkbt. 

lated in proportion as their agos drew too near to the years of 
ambition^ certain of being sacrificed soon or late in torn to the 
umbrages of the tyrant, apprised a few days before, by the 
terror of the harem, of the order of death issued against him 
by Amurath, preserved by a precarious subterfuge, and taking 
refuge with some eunuchs in the most remote apartment of the 
Sultana mother^ this voung prince imagined hearing in each 
rumor of the palace the footsteps of the mutes or of Amurath 
himself, coming to discover his asylum and fulfil the order 
for his execution. His hand on the bolt of the kiosk where 
the Sultana had concealed him, he fancied having but that 
door between him and death. 

The noise and the cries of Long live the Sultan Ibra- 
him, by the viziers, the pages, the bostandjis who thronged 
to salute the new emperor, appeared to him an artifice of his 
assassins to allure him out from his place of refuge and to 
strangle him upon the threshold. He refused to believe the 
death of Amurath lY. and to open the door to those who 
were presenting him the empire, notil the Sultana his mother 
should have attested it. She hastened to do so; but the 
word of even his mother did not appear to him as yet a testi- 
mony sufficiently conclusive of his security; it was found 
necessary to bring from the seraglio the body of Amurath, 
and to show it to him through the window of the kiosk, to 
decide him to open. He did not believe himself living but 
on seeing his brother dead. At this sight he drew the bolt, 
and the viziers fell at his feet. 

After having received their congratulations and the em- 
braces of his mother, he himself assisted in carrying back 
the body covered with a shroud to the palace. He committed 
to her to whom he twice owed his life the charge of reigning 
in his stead. She left the grand vizier Kara-Mustapha, her 
creature, at the post to which her influence had elevated him 
in the last years of the reign of Amurath. He was a Hun- 
garian by birth, whom His courage, his integrity and his ser* 
vices had elevated, grade after grade, from the rank of private 
Janissary, to the highest functions of the State. He deserved 
it by his virtues ; but accustomed to receive from a despotic 
hand the impulsion of a will superior to his own, he was more 
fit to be the hand than the head of a reign. 

Ibrahim, entirely annihilated by the habit of subordinat- 
ing every impulse of his soul to his mother's, contented him* 
self with living without desiring to govern. He was ener- 


yated by the premature pleasures of the harem^ which the 
usages of the seraglio left for the only dÎTersion of their 
captivity to the incarcerated princes. His mother and his 
viziers presented him every Friday— the day consecrated by 
the Mussulmans to conjugal union — afresh slaves, the tribute 
of the Archipelago, of Greece, of Persia and of Oircassia. 
Exciting perfumes ended with vanquishing the infirmity of 
Ibrahim, and two male children were born the first year of 
his reign. 


An expedition of reprisal against Azof, principal city of 
the Cossacks of the Don, stormed and burned the capital of 
that population, now Tartar, anon Eussian, then Polish, ac- 
cording to the capricious genius of those pirates of the land. 
Mohammed Gheraï, Khan of the Tartars, lent the Turks a 
hundred thousand Tartar auxiliaries for this expedition. The 
pasha Sultanzadê, commander of the Ottoman army, rebuilt 
Azof and fortified it to make it a barrier against the Cossacks 
and the Eussians, their ordinary allies. The grand vizier 
availed himself of the authority accruing from this happy 
expedition to punish the former salihdar, the all-powerfid 
favorite of Amurath IV., for his tyrannies and depredations. 
Forty chiaoux despatched upon his trace to Adrianople, got up 
with and executed him upon the way. The Sultana v alidé, 
who designed giving in marriage to this opulent salihdar one 
of her daughters, was indignant at the murder, and pre- 
pared for its chastisement. The occasion soon offered of 

Nassouh-Pasha, appointed governor of Aleppo by the 
grand vizier, was informed on the route that his appointment 
was a snare, and that an order of death transmitted to his 
predecessor awaited him in Syria. He turned back immedi- 
ately with his troops, announcing loudly the intention of 
being revenged of the government and of revolutionizing 
the capital. His approach and these rumors revived in Con- 
stantinople the former ferments of sedition ill suppressed by 
the late tyranny. The grand vizier marched out to the 
encounter of Nassouh all the Janissaries and the spahis 
which he had in the city. They were repulsed in the plain 
of Nicomedia. Nassouh, victorious, planted his tents of 
rebellion at Scutari, in view of the gardens of the seraglio ; 


he there awaited the tdtle of grand visier which his 

plices flattered him with beinff each day about to recei^o 

from the weakness and terror of Ibrahim. 

Deceived by his friends and betrayed by his kiaya, who 
drew him into the snare, he dared at last to cross the Bos- 
phoros with a handful of his friends to receive from the 
grand vizier his pardon and the general command of the 
army of Roumelia. Surrounded, at his debarkation on the 
beach of the seraglio, by the guards of the erand visier, he 
escaped from their sabres but by flying, with an escort of 
cavalry, into the mountains of Bulgaria. Hb son, aged six- 
teen years, not being able to follow him in his flight, was left 
behind him in one of his farms adjac^it to the Bosphorus. 
Overtaken himself a few days after, as he was posting to 
Boutschuk to pass from thence into the camp of the Tartars, 
he was brought back loaded with chains to Constantinople, 
and executed like a vile criminal on the place of the Hippo- 
drome. His head ensanguined the following day the çate of 
the seraglio which he had menaced. His brother Àli was 
strangled in the bark that bore him into exile ; his son, in- 
con>orated among the pages of Ibrahim, retrieved the honor 
of his house, and became one of the most authentic and im- 
partial historians of the empire. He relates without aston- 
ishment and without murmur the execution of his own 
father, so much does reverence for fatality exclude in the 
Ottomans the idea of vengeance. 

Soulflkar-Pasha, accomplice and lieutenant of Nassouh, 
fell a victim to the same dissimulation of the divan. Ap- 
pointed governor of Cyprus, the admiral who commanded at 
that station had the order to allure him, imder pretext of a 
festival, on board the admiral's vessel, and presented him at 
the close of the banquet the order of death. These execu- 
tions, reminiscences of the reign of Amurath IV., were the 
policy of the harem and not that of the grand vizier Musta- 
pha. The latter submitted to rather than ordered these 


A triumvirate of favorites, the secret council of the Sul- 
tana Validé, governed under her, and was indignant at not 
governing in partnership. This triumvirate was composed 
of a man of agreeable but light character, Sultanzadé- 


Pa^; of Yoosouf, the equerry of Ibrahim, and of Djindji, 
his khodja or preceptor. Those khodjas of the Sultans had 
in the seraglio nearly the same fonctions as the spiritual 
directors of conscience of Catholic soyereigns used to fill at 
ih/e Escuriel, in Spain : influences without attributions, but 
dominating all others. The reputation of the present khodja 
of being versed in magic and in medicine, the secret which he . 
pretended to possess of composing philters which would restore 
the youth and vigor of his pupil, had sustained him in the 
highest rank of favor. 

The Sultana Koesem, since the murder of the salihdàr, 
committed without her consent, served the hatred of these 
three men against the grand vizier. This hatred was en- 
venomed daily by the animosity of a woman of importance 
in the harem, the Kiaya Khatoun, governess of the odalisques, 
ministress of the Sultan's pleasures. He did not cease 
to complain of the stinginess of the grand vizier in the 
administration of the harem. Her accusations appeared 
worse than crimes to a prince dominated by women. The 
Kiaya Khatoun, in concert with the Sultana Validé, and with 
the triumvirate inimical to Kara-Mustapha, complained bit- 
terly to Ibrahim of the negligences of the grand vizier, who 
left her, she said, in want of wood to bum in the apartments 
of the harem. Ibrahim, indignant, sent to interrupt the 
divan which the grand vizier was presiding over at that 
moment in the palace to reproach him with this wrong 
to his women. 

" Why," said he with a severe tone on perceiving him, 
" have the five hundred loads of wood asked by the Kiaya 
Khatoun for the harem not been delivered ? " The grand 
vizier excused himself, threw the blame upon the im- 
portance of affairs of St^te which had diverted his attention 
from these details. Then permitting himself to give an im- 
prudent lesson to his young master at a moment when his 
enemies sought an occasion to compromise him : " My 
padischah," said he, " was I then to suspend the divan, and 
to interrupt the discussion of the highest affairs of State, I 
who am thy representative and thy shadow, to occupy myself 
with these miserable five hundred loads of wood which were 
not worth all together five hundred aspers ? Wherefore do 
you question me about these wagons of wood instead of 
questioning me upon the situation of your empire, upon the 
happiness oi your people and the security of your frontiers ? " 

278 mSTOBT OF tubkey. 

This liberty of speeoh, interpreted into a lecture and an 
oatra^ by the enemies of Kara-Mostapha, made his friends 
tremble for his safety. They represented to him his impm- 
denoe : '^ Is it not throngh affection for him," replied he, 
'Hhat I told him the truth? Am I to flatter instead of 
serving him f It is better to die honest and free than to 
live an adulator and a slave." 

Meanwhile, to counterplot his enemies, he conspired him- 
self the ruin of the most dangerous of them, which was 
Yousouf, the aga of the Janissaries. Emissaries of the 
grand vizier, sent ^th gold into the barracks, suggested to 
the soldiers to reftîse to touch the plates of rice which would 
be served them in the court of the seraglio — a sign of dis- 
content that presaged a revolt, and of which the respon- 
sibility devolved upon the a^ These manœuvres, disclosed 
to Yousouf by his informers m the barracks, armed the trium- 
virs with a real grievance against their enemy. Ibrahim, 
informed and convinced by them of this intrigue of his 
vizier, sent for one of the most accredited casuists of the 

" If I were to put to death my lala (my father)," a 
familiar title of the grand vizier, asked he, " would my 
subjects be dissatisfied with me ? " " God forbid," replied 
the oulema, " the necks of your subjects, my padischah, are 
not strong enough to support the weight of your anger ; 
they are all more slender in your presence than the edge of 
your sabre suspended over them. The death of your grand 
vizier would fiU them with joy." 

Ibrahim, reassured, attended as usual at the council of 
the viziers in the seraglio, and made two or three knocks 
of impatience upon the trellis of gilt wood that concealed 
him from the eyes of the divan. At this signal the council 
was silent and dispersed ; the grand vizier remaining alone 
in the seraglio, presented himself, according to etiquette, at 
the door of the apartment of the Sultan to converse with 
him confidentially upon State business. The mutes inter- 
dicted his entry ; he withdrew uneasy to his palace, took 
under his clothes a Koran to read in case of need the death 
prayers, and returned through the iron gate to the seraglio 
The Sultan was walking gloomy and irresolute in his saloons ; 
the presence of the grand vizier, not authorized by usage to 
this familiarity, irritated him. 

'^ My lala," cried he, with anger in his looks and his voice, 


" I must admire your coming to my house as to your father's, 
uninyited ! " Then, without letting him finish his justifica- 
tion about the fermentations of the Janissaries, which he 
attributed to the fact that the padischah no longer sustained 
with sufficient frankness his minister ; " Thou liest, traitor," 
said Ibrahim to him ; " it is thou who hast fomented this 
rebellion ; I will find some one more worthy than thou to 
hold the seals of the empire. Take him," pursued he, turn- 
ing towards the chief of the bostandjis and pointing with his 
hand to the grand vizier. 

The bostandji, uncertain if the padischah intended by the 
pronoun the State seal which was carried by the viaier or the 
viaier himself, interpreted the word in the less terrible sense, 
and received the seal from the hands of Kara-Mustapha 
By favor of this mistake, the deposed grand viaier got back 
to his house, trembling with the fear of having the headsman 
at his heels, disguised himself, and escaped through the roof 
of his harem. He descended upon a deserted spot, before 
the little mosque of Naali, adjoining his harem, where hay 
and straw were sold, and hid himself, without being seen, 
under a hay*cock, to await the night. 

Meanwhile, when the bostandji-baschi took back to the 
Sultan the seal from the grand vizier. ^^ Blockhead," said to 
him furiously the padischah, ^^ it is not the seal, but the man 
himself that I demanded of thee. Go, and bring me instantly 
the head of the traitor»" 

Five hundred bostandjis surrounded, at this order, the 
house of the g^and viaier, broke in the doors, penetrated even 
to the apartments of his women, without finding their victim. 
But one of them having got upon the roof of the harem, and 
observing from this elevation the environs, thought he per- 
ceived under the hay the movement of a breast respiring, ran 
thither with his companions, rummaged the hay-co^ with the 
point of his sabre, and discovered the fugitive. 

Kara-Mustapha defended himself to no purpose with his 
drawn sword, and succumbed to the force of numbers. 
Gagged and transported to the place of the Khodja-Pasha, he 
was strangled on the brink of the fountain of Kara-AIL 
His body was taken to the Sultan before committing it to the 
sepulchre which he was careful to prepare himself in his day 
oi fortune. 


The favorite Saltanzadé inherited the position of him of 
whom he had contrived the ruin. A fresh favorite, Scheker* 
bouli, a woman of Persian birth, began to rival in the heart 
of Ibrahim the ascendant of the Validé. This favorite, to 
alienate the Saltan from his mother, concerted with the 
Khodja-Djendji to entice him to Acbianople. The grand 
visier uid the Snltana Validé, nneasy at this removal, 
broa|;ht him back to Constantinople by feigned symptoms of 
sedition. Two sons, Selim and Othman, were bom to tho 
Saltan daring this excarsion of pleasare to Adrianople. 

The Khan of the Crimea, Mohammed-Gherai, was de^ 
posed, and his son, Islam-Ghcrai, invested with the sov- 
ereignty. When he presented himself at the seraglio to give 
thanks to Ibrahim for his investiture, he found the Saltan 
without pelisse or turban, respiring the coolness of the morn- 
ing air on the brink of a basin of the garden. *^ Listen, 
Iskm," said the Sultan, " I have made thee Khan. Be hence- 
forth like thy fathers, the friend of my friends, and the 
enemy of my enemies. What is thy age ? " pursued the 
Sultan. '^ I am forty," replied Islam, ^^ and through the 
misfortune of my captivity, I mount to-day for the first time 
a horse ; but I hope, however, to manage sufficiently well my 
charger to repay you in services for the honor you have con- 
ferred on me. Between the Eussian and Polish infidels and 
me there will be but the edge of the sabre." 

The Czar of the Eussians, Alexis Michaïlowitz, sent 
ambassadors to Ibrahim to congratulate him on his accession 
and to renew his assurances of friendship. " You must," 
replied the Sultan to the Czar, " restrain the Cossacks upon 
the seaboard of the Black Sea, and continue to pay the Khan 
of the Crimea the tribute which the Czars of Moscow have 
always paid to my Tartars." 

The Porte, in order to remain faithful to the stipulations 
of the peace of Szoen with Austria, refused to the ambitious 
Kakoczi, vassal prince of Transylvania, to sustain his preten- 
sions to upper Hungary, Wallachia and Moldavia. Baron 
de Czernin, ambassador of Austria, brought to Constantinople 
the presents of the Emperor. He claimed in vain for the 
Boman empire the keys of the Holy-Sepulchre at Jerusalem. 
The Sultan replied that the possession of the holy places had 
been conferred immemorially by a treaty of Mahomet himself 


on the Greek Christians, and that on any condition he would 
not derogate from the engagements of this treaty. 

The harem continned to ocGnpy him more than the empire. 
Women, perfumes, and furs, were the three delights of his 
terrestrial paradise. His mother, his viziers, his pashas, his 
favorites no longer sufficed to search and furnish him the 
fairest slaves of Georgia, of Persia, of Poland, of Italy, 
those native lands of female beauty. The censors of the 
seraglio, in which was constantly kept burning the exciting 

?erfumes of Arabia, had raised the Asiatic price of amber, 
'he price of sable-skins, for apparel and carpeting the harem, 
arose tenfold above the ordinary value. His passion for 
odorous flowers was so frantic that, instead of heron plumes 
mounted upon knots of precious stones — ^the imperial decora- 
tion of the turban of his ancestors — ^he intertwined in the 
folds of his turban, in his hair and around his ears, whole 
garlands of flowers. This effeminate decoration scandalized 
the soldiers and the people. He invented a loose gown, all 
formed of sable fur, of which the contact caressed all over 
the skin, and which had no fold and no cincture to chafe his 
delicacy. Each of the buttons of this voluptuous winding- 
sheet was made of a single precious stone of the value of ten 
thousand gold ducats. 

His prodigality on dresses for the countless women of his 
harem, led him to send out to sea to meet the vessels of 
Genoa and Venice upholsterers charged to forestall the 
shawls, the muslins, the velvets, which the activity of com- 
merce did not suffice to bring to Constantinople. He diverted 
himself from one pleasure but with another. He left the 
women of his harem but for flute and tambourine-players, 
musicians, singers, dancers, and buffoons— diversions neces- 
sary to the melancholy consequent on his debauches. Like 
Nero, Caligula, or Sardanapalus in his excesses, he degraded 
the first offices of the empire or of the army to the degree 
of making them the reward of his coarsest orgies. It is thus 
that he appointed aga of the Janissaries a Bohemian named 
Ahmed, who used to amuse him by grotesque trivialities, and 
that he rewarded with the place of capitan-pasha a Greek 
pyrotechnist who represented in lines of fire, in an illumination 
of Ûie seraglio, the vessels, the masts and sails of the fleet 


These two favorites of a caprice had sense of shame enough 
to decline what the prince had felt no shame, in his ex- 
trayagance, to offer them. 

He formed his habitual society from men devoted to 
pleasure, as if pleasure was the only serious business of 
the State. He ran at night with them on horseback from 
the new to the old seraglio, usually inaccessible to the reign- 
ing Sultans, searching amon^ the women sequestered in uiis 
depot of princesses, of favorites and of slaves, the remains 
of celebrated beauties. Already father of seven sons, he 
had raised to the rank of Sultana Khasseki (Sultana consort) 
seven women of his harem. Each of these had her palace in 
the seraglio, her court^ her grand officers, her dower on the 
treasury, espied slipper money ^ her pleasure boats, her cur* 
ricles, her eunuchs, her slaves. Seven other favorites in 
title, but not yet mothers, had for slipper money the revenue 
of so many provinces. He gave beside to each the salable 
disposal of certain great offices of the State, so that accident 
or overbidding used to desi^ate, from the depths of the 
harem, by the hand of an odalisque, an illiterate and foreign 
girl, the candidates to the most important functions of the 

The depraved imagination of Ibrahim wished to vanquish 
even nature. He coveted a gigantic wife, the object of his 
visions. Emissaries, sent out by the Kiaya-Katoun, sought, 
by order of Ibrahim, in all the gynécées of Asia, « young 
girl of extraordinary stature. They discovered a colossus 
in a young Armenian woman— a race celebrated for the am- 
plitude of its forms and the elevation of its stature in these 
mountains, the Helvetia of the East. Taken off from her 
family and presented to the Sultan, Ibrahim fancied finding 
in this colossal consort an incomparable phenomenon of 
nature. He attached himself to the Armenian woman with 
such frenzy, that the frantic favor of this odalisque alarmed 
not only the Sultana Khasseki, but that even the Sultana 
Koesem herself trembled for her influence. Ibrahim gave 
as apanage to this giantess of the harem, the government of 
Damascus. The Sultana Koesem, feigning also a wish to 
honor in her the idol of her son, invited the Armenian to a 
feast, and had her strangled by the eunuchs during the ban- . 
quet. They persuaded the inconsolable Ibrahim that his 
favorite had died suffocated by the excess of obesity which 


he admired in her. Ho bewailed her as a prodigy of beauty 
which nature would never renew for him. 

The chief of the black eunuchs or the kislaraga, goy- 
ernor of the harem, was then the eunuch SunbuUu (a name 
signifying the possessor of hyacinths). The usage of the East 
appropriates to eunuchs the names of flowers or perfumes 
by allusion to the women, those animated flowers with which 
they only are familiar in the palaces of the princes or of the 
great. SunbuUu, like the eunuchs of the Pharaohs of 
Egypt, of the Schahs of Persia, of the Greek emperors of 
Gonstantinc^e^ and of the Sultans of Stamboul, had for him- 
self the luxury of a harem. He had purchased a slave who 
was about to become mother. The beauty of this slave, 
encountered frequently by the Sultan in the interior apart- 
ment of SunbuUu, adjoining the harem, so dazzled Ibrahim 
that he asked her of the kislaraga as nurse for a son of 
which one of his wives, the Sultana Tarkan, was just deliv- 
ered. The predilection which the Sultan felt for the nurse 
of his son Mohammed extended to even her child ; he pre- 
ferred this child of a stranger to even his own son. 

One summer day as he was playing on the brink of a basin 
with his privileged women, the children and the nurses, 
amusing himself by pushing them into the water to enjoy 
their fright and to have the pleasure of seeing them swim 
in regaining the bank, the Sultana Khasseki, mother of Mo- 
hammed, jealous of the preference which the Sultan showed for 
the child of a stranger over his own, broke into insulting re- 
proaches against the nurse. Ibrahim, in a fit of anger at 
the Sultana who abused his favorite, tore from the bosom of 
its mother her own son Mohammed and hurled him by the 
legs into the cistern of the warden. The eunuchs drew out 
the child half-drowned, ana his forehead retained through 
life a scar from this madness of his father. SunbuUu, 
trembling lest the vengeance of the Sultanas and of the Va- 
lidé Koesem, should hold him responsible for the disorders 
of which his beautiful slave and her nursUng were the occa- 
sion in the harem, resigned of himself the perilous place of 
kislaraga, and embarked with his treasures, his harem, the 
nurse and his infant son, to «nd his days at Mecca. As- 
saUed in the vicinity of Oarpathos by the squadron of Malta, 
he perished in fighting with intrepidity; his two hundred 
slaves, the thirty women of his harem, the nurse and the 
infant became the prey of the Knights. The infant, brought 


op by them in ^e Christian ûâth, and reputed the son oi 
the Saltan, entered the monastic order of Saint- Dominiok, 
and was celebrated in Spain and in Italy under the name of 
Father Othman, 


Meanwhile the yices and the insanities of the seraglio 
did not prerail over the virile and enterprising g^us of the 
Sultana Koesem, who governed in the name of her son. 
The pride of superadding a territory to the empire inspired 
her with the expedition of Gandia. 

A Dalmatian, a bom enemy of Yenice, which possessed 
still this island, was become capitan-pasha, and did not cease 
to commend this conquest to the imagination of the Validé. 
This Dalmatian, named in his infancy Joseph Maskovich, 
and since Yousouf-Pasha, was bom in Yrana in Dalmatia, 
neighboring the Venetian city of Zara. His mother was 
a poor slave; he had commenced his adventurous life as 
stable-boy in the stables of the beg of Nadin-Sinan ; his 
indigence was such that he followed barefoot the horse of 
the beg, and that he owed his first slippers to the charity of 
an old woman of Vraua, touched wiUi his beauty and his 
misery. A chamberlain of the Sultan, who was passing by 
Dalmatia, in returning from Venice, was stmck with his 
features and his intelligence. He took him into his service, 
carried him to Constantinople, obtained for him the place of 
porter of the seraglio, at the wages of seven aspers per day. 
He passed from this humble function to the rank of Wood- 
splitter, then of bostandji of the seraglio. Ibrahim remarked 
him, brought him near his person, discovered in him as much 
aptitude as grace, and made him, by the advice of hb mother, 
his favorite salihdar after the death of the salihdar Mus- 

Vindictive as a Dalmatian, zealous as a renegade, ambi- 
tious as a parvenu, Yousouf aspired to the post of capitan- 
pasha solely to avenge himself on Venice, whose yoke had 
weighed upon his country and on his family. He attained 
it : the Sultana Koesem had liim named commander of the 
forces of sea and land of the expedition which she was pre- 
paring in silence. The Sultan affianced him before his de- 
parture to one of his daughters, aged two years, named Fa- 
tima. A fleet of five hundred sail, carrying three hundred 


and thirty thousand men, left the 30th April, 1645, the Sea 
of Marmora and the Golf of Salonica to land on the island 
of Candia. 


Ancient Crete, the tomb of Jupiter, the kingdom of his 
grand-daughter (the nymph Ida, who gave her name to the 
h>ftiest of its mountains), the fortunate island, sumamed in 
antiquity the nurse of J ove, was the first of known lands 
where man forged the metals. The Dactyles* of Mount 
Ida are the fabled or real blacksmiths of the old world ; its 
cities, its villages, its mountains, its fountains are the museum 
of the antique theogony. The fertility and population of 
the island equalled those of Egypt. The Cretans sowed 
wheat before the Triptolemus of the Greeks ; they invented 
the first code of laws that ruled the cities and the kingdoms 
of Asia. 

An aristocracy of privilege had succeeded there to a 
unique democracy which based the equality of the citizens 
upon the degradation of a caste of slaves, f Always at war 
with the Greeks, sometimes victors, sometimes vanquished, 
they joined through Asiatic patriotism the league of Mithri- 
dates against the Eomans. The first Eoman expedition 
against Crete, under the command of Anthony, father of the 
triumvir, perished completely under its arms. The Eoman 
soldiers, hung at their own yard-arms, were engulfed with 
their galleys in the waters of the island. MeteUus, lieuten- 
ant of Pompey, conquered without subduing them. The 
nobles poisoned themselves in a body in order not to survive 
the independence of their country ; the people escaped servi- 
tude by flying into the forests and the inaccessible caverns 
of Mount Ida, where they kept up a perpetual revolt against 
the Eoman oppression. Brutus and Cassius fled there for 
refuge after the triumph of the tyranny of Octavius over the 
enervated liberty of Eome. Constantino, on dividing the 

* Priests of Cybele, goddess of the earth, of course mineral as well 
as agricaltnraL — TtunskUor, 

f This democracy was not at all rmiquej nor even uncommon, in an- 
tiquity. On the contrary, a slave-basis was not only general in fact, but 
deemed essential even by speculation, as see, for instance, Aristotle. 
Nay, accordingly, in even the modem and model American Republic, are 
not the Slave States the classic land of the Democracy ? A fact that 
passes for a practical paradox with our profound politicians. — Ibid. 


empire with his successor, gave Crete in part portion to Con* 
stantios. The Arabs took it oiF from the Bysantines ; Ban- 
douin, the crosader, King of Jerusalem, from the Arabs ; 
the Genoese, from Baudouin; the Venetians, from the Ge- 
noese ; it remained in their possession during three centuries, 
and was become, by the exertions of the Senate of Venice, 
the citadel of the Mediterranean, when the Greek Sultana 
Koesem commenced by the hands of Yousouf the twenty-five 
years conquest which was to assure to the Ottomans that 
key of Syria, of Egypt, of the Archipelago, that maritime 
bulwark of the three continents where reigned Islamism. 


Cydonia, the military capital of -the island, surrendered 
after three months of a heroic siege to the Ottomans. They 
had thenceforth a foothold in the island. They left there a gar- 
rison of twelye thousand men, under the command of Hassan- 
Pasha, and deferred to the following years the slow and con- 
tinuous conquest of the rest of the island and of the block 
of mountaina At his return, Yousouf, despite the support 
of the Sultana, found death as the recompense of his suc- 
cess. Salih-Pasha had been just appointed grand vizier ; he 
apprehended the competition of Yousouf He had Ibrahim 
persuaded that Yousouf spared the prisoners at Candia to 
enrich himself with their ransom, and that he was loitering 
with the war to prolong his authority and his importance. 

^^ Eepair instantly back to Candia, or I kill thee," said 
Ibrahim, impatient to finish this incomplete campaign. 

" My padischah," replied the serdar, astonished in his turn 
at thb ignorance of the conditions of a maritime campaign 
in winter, " you know nothing of sea affiairs ; we have besides 
no rowers, and the galleys wUl not move without them." 

" Infamous rebel," rejoined the Sultan, " pretendest thou 
to lecture me on sea affairs ? " Then turning to the bostandji- 
bashi : " Bring me his head," said he to him on leaving the 

The bostandji suspended some moments the execution of 
an inconsiderate order, which he attributed to the vehemence 
of the blood of Ibrahim, and of which he expected the revo- 
cation from his reflection. He confined himself to shutting 
up Yousouf in the kiosk " of the Birds," a grated prison for 
the viziers between their disgrace and their execution. Nei- 


tber tke previous friendship, nor tHe title of son-in-law of 
ike Saltan, nor a son who was born to Yousonf on the veir 
day,* nor the touching supplication which the prisoner ad- 
dressed by the officious hands of the bostandji-bashi to Ibra- 
him to ask him for at least the favor of life, could make him 
pardon his insolence to his master. Ibrahim ordered to 
strangle his favorite, his son-in-law, and the conqueror of 
Oandia in the kiosk "of the Birds," and had his body 
brought before him either for enjoyment or for mourning. 
He contemplated with a sort of melancholy pleasure the 
cheeks, still colored mih a remnant of life, of the beautiful 
serdar : " Alas I alas I " said he, moved to pity over his 
victim, as if he had not been the executioner, " alas 1 alas 1 
for those beautiful rosy cheeks ! " 

The avidity of enrichiDg himself with the presumed trea- 
sures of the conqueror of Cydonia was the principal cause 
of the murder of Yousouf. His enemies diffused aie report 
that he brought back vdth him and hid from his master in- 
calculable treasures, among others a column of massive gold. 
He brought back in refSity but glory, an integrity rare 
among generals, and an island of inestimable price to his 
country. . When his property was inventoried, the column 
of massive gold sunk to a column of yellow marble of 
Egypt streaked ^th red. This column was employed by 
the architect of the Sultana Validé to suppoirt the pew of 
the Saltan in the mosque she was building at Scutari 

Kesentment against the Venetians for their resistance to 
him in Candia, and the descents which they used to make in 
i^e Morea, excited Ibrahim to the rage of ordering a general 
massacre of the Greeks and the Christians in ms capital. 
The mufti, Abou-Saïd, called upon to authorize by a religious 
fetwa this sanguinary order, refused happily to give it the 
sanction of God. He made the Sultan tremble before the 
crime of massacring so many of his innocent subjects, and 
before the depopulation of the capital, of which these Greeks 

* This child could have been scarcely by the daughter of the Sultan, 
who, accordmg to the author, was but " two years" of age at the de- 
parture of the expedition, but a few months before ; and if by another 
woman, one does not see how Ibndiim should have been softened by the 
dxcomstance in favoor of a faithless son-in-law. — TVanslator. 

288 HI8T0BT 09 TumxiY. 

and Oluriatiaafl were the BtreiigUi and wealth. He eaosei 
to be brought to the divan the regiiiters of the taz-eolleotor«, 
and counted in Constantinople alone two hondred thousand 
Armenian and Greek tax-payers, without including the 

The ruin rather than the crime made the Sultan recedes. 
He confined himself to interdictmg the residence of Stam- 
boul, the Ottoman part of the city, to the ambassadors of 
the Christian powers, and fixing for their residence the sub- 
urbs of Oalata and of Pera, on the other side of the Golden 
Horn. The Jesuits who sought to wrest from the Francis- 
cans the service of the holy places, were accused of having 
provoked by their intrigues the arrest and the expulsion of 
their competitors the Catholic monks. The Austrian am- 
bassadors received from their court, the 5th March, 1646, 
the order to protect the Franciscans against the Jesuits, 
guilty or innocent of the ambitious views that were imputed 
to them. 

The grand vizier Salih studied, during the mir with the 
Venetians for the possession of Candia, to detach Austria 
from their cause, and to remove sH grievance of that court 
against the empire, by renewing severely to Eakoczy, prince 
of Transylvania, the prohibition to disturb the Austrian 
provinces. ^' Tell thy master," said the Sultan, addressing 
in frdl divan the envoys of Eakocsy, " that he should not 
build upon the embarrassments which are occasioned me by 
the Venetian war, that I have armies enough to make myself 
obeyed at all points, and that if he renews his incursions 
upon the territory of the emperor of Austria, my brother 
and my friend, I will depose him from the sovereignty. 
Hear and tremble." 

The accent, the look and the gesture of Ibrahim, struck 
such terror into the soul of the agent of Eakoczy, that he 
died of the shock of these words upon re-entering his palace. 


The complacent Sultanzadé had received in the place of 
Yousouf the command of the second expedition to Candia. 
The servility of this courtier sometimes astonished the capri- 
cious despotism of the Sultan himself. 

" How is it," said Ibrahim one day to Sultanzadé, " that 
thou always approvest without exception whatever I say. 

HI8T0BT OF TtlBKXT. 289 

B&d all that I do whei^er good or evil ? " — ^^ My padîschah," 
replied the ûiyorite, ^' jon are the khalif, the shadow of Qod 
upon the earth, and all that flows from thy mind is a divine 
inspiration; even in cases where your volitions have the 
appearance of error or of contradiction which our weak in- 
teUigenoe may conceive to be unreasonable, these volitions 
have a secret wisdom which yonr slave should take for 
granted and respect without being able to comprehend 

Sultanzadé sometimes relaxed from this official servilism 
in his confidential intercourse with friends. He showed one 
day to the high-judge Abdoul-Halem, his confidant, an auto- 
grai^ letter of the Sultan, or khati-scherif, written in the 
delurium of drunkenness, and of which the language, impe- 
rial to him, would have -appeared to any other the scandal 
ùi the sovereignty and the ignominy of the throne. '^ Listen 
to me," said this khati-scherif of the Sultan, who began by 
dishonoring with his contempt the ministers of his power ; 
" my ancestors have sent too much gold and jewels to Mecca 
and to Medina ; cause that they be instantly brought back 
into my treasury ; otherwise I will have your skin torn off, 
and have it stuffed with straw and make it a scarecrow to 
the birds." 

^'Thou seest," said Sultanzadé to the high-judge his 
friend, after having read to him thb khati-scherif, ^' to what 
abjectness I am reduced by these insensate caprices of a 
rabble of favorite slaves, Russian, Polish, Hungarian, French, 
Persian, Greek, who reign in the seraglio. God only knows 
how all this will end." 

Sultionzadé died upon landing in Crete. Housseln-Pasha 
continued the conquest in his pUce with the title of serdar. 
The city of Betimo and several other strongholds of the 
kland were added to the area occupied by the conquerors. 
The capital, Candia, held out stilL 

Dalmatia, wrested city by city from the Venetians by 
Tekeli-Pasha, Aaof defended triumphantly by the capitan- 
pasha Mousa, against an attempt of the Russians, honored 
the viziership of Salih, despite the apathy and scandals of 
the court. 


Ibrahim, after having exhausted the excesses of debauch, 
Vol. III.— 13 

290 HI8T0KT or TU&KXT. 

WM now •yhaaiting the eztraTagaaoes of pride. Irriiaied 

at often meeting, in his rides through the city, some ohstacles 
to the rapidity of his coorsers, ho ordered the viaier to inter* 
diet the entry of the capital to every species of wagon ; it was 
to interdict to Constantinople the indispensable mode of provi- 
sioning itself in hay, in straw and in wood. Obedience was 
eluded and illasory. Meanwhile in going one day on horse- 
back to the plain of Daoad-Pasha, the eyes of Ibrahim were 
offended by the sight of a wagon of forage coming into the 
city ; he (Milled the grand visier, and without listening to his 
excuse ; " Let him be strangleîd 1 '' cried he, " let him be 
strangled 1 " 

The absence of an executioner and of a rope left some 
moments of reflection and some possibility of a return of 
Ibrahim to cool blood. But as obstinate in the execution 
as he had been abrupt in the order, he stored the next 
house, belonging to the iman of the village, and caused to be 
strangled before his eyes the unfortunate Salih with the well* 
rope. He sent from thence the seal of the grand vizier to 
he capitan-pasha, vanquisher of the Eussians at Aio£ 

B^ntanoe, a few days after, led him to withdraw the 
seal from Mousa, and confer the rank of grand vizier upon 
Ahmed-Pasha. The Sultanas and the transient favorites 
disposed more fully than ever of the empire. The govemot 
of JBroussa, who furnished snow and ice for the dierbets of 
the two seraglios and the kiosks of the favorites, having lost 
his way among the glaciers of Mount Olympus, and his pro- 
longed absence having countenanced his death, his place of 
governor was given to a favorite of the washerwoman of 
the harem. Ibrahim, contrary to the proscriptions of the 
Koran, espoused an eighth wife, and had a carriage made for 
a favorite, of which all the nails were precious stones. 

Cimdia continued to defend itself against the fleets and 
the reinforcements sent incessuitly from Constantinople to 
Housseïn-Pasha. The serdar, struck with two balls on the 
fiice in an assault, bound himself his shattered jaw with the 
shawl of his turban, and continued to fight at the head of 
his Janissaries. Malta, Florence, Eome, the illustrious vol- 
unteers of all the Catholic nations brought assistance to 
Candia. Housseïn complained of the tardiness of the capi- 
tan-pasha, who was strangled for his negligence. The grand 
vizier effected likewise the decapitation of all the pasl^ or 
governors connected with his predecessor Salih, of whom he 


apprehended tlie resentment. Every morning the people 
oame to examine with horror at the gate of the seraglio 
what were the heads that fell the past night. 


These executions drove terror itself to revolt The son 
of the former grand vizier Salih, named Mohammed-Pasha, 
governor of Erzeroum, had escaped death through difficulty of 
reaching him in his remote government. He concerted with 
Wardar-Ali-Pasha, governor of Kars, to make resistance to 
the tyranny of Ibrahim. 

Wardar-Ali-Pasha knew himself devoted to execution for 
having refused to send to the harem of Ibrahim the beauti- 
ful Georgian, Perikhan, daughter of a prince of those coun- 
tries, affianced to Ipshir-Pasha, the son of his friend. The 
two pashas made an appointment with each other to meet at 
Tokat where to proclaim the insurrection, and whence to 
march on Constantinople. 

Mohammed, on the route with his guard towards Tokat, 
encountered two chiaoux officers who were carrying back 
to Constantinople the head of his uncle, Mourteza-Paaha, 
decapitated by them at Siwas. He asked them to show him 
the firman by virtue of which they put his uncle to death. 
The chiaoux avowed to him, that the warrant of death, con- 
cealed by them from his researches when they passed through 
Erseroum, was inclosed in a leaden flask sodden to their sad- 
dle-bow, in which the Turks carry water on a journey. He isaw 
that this would soon or late be also his own lot, saw no safety 
but in audacity, and tempted by negotiation the fidelity of 
Koeppilu-Pasha, a man of integrity and ability who was 
marching at the head of the troops sent against him and 
against Wardar-Ali, his accomplice. He wrote the latter 
from Angora to beware of the artifices of the Porte, and 
especially of Ipshir-Pasha, that perfidious friend for whom 
he had compromised himself in preserving the beautiful bride 
from the slavery of the harem of Ibrahim. 

Wardar-Ali, incredulous to his advices, received Ipshir 
in his camp. The traitor Ipshir, purchased secretly by the 
Porte, fell of a sudden with nis bands of cavalry on the dis- 
armed troops of Wardar, precipitated this chief himself 
from his horse, bound him and delivered him to Koeprilu : 
'^ Perfidious wretch ! " cried he to Ipshir, on seeing him take 


part in tlie preparations for his execution, " is it thus Aaft 
thou recompensest the generosity which I haye had in brar- 
ing ^anny to guarantee t^y betrothed from ontrage ? " 

His severed head was sent by Koeprilu to the Saltan. 
Ibrahim, instead of recompensing Ipshir for his perfidy, con- 
demned the beautiful Perikhan, the involuntary cause of the 
revolt, to be exposed by the light of torches to the profana- 
tions of the multitude ; but the indignation of the Mussul- 
mans constrained him to revoke this atrocious order. 

Ibrahim coveted the wife of the grand vizier Ahmed ; 
this vile sycophant of all his caprices repudiated the wife to 
whom he owed his fortune, so that the Sultan might e^trae 
her legally. In return for this ignominious ingratitude, 
Ibrahim gave in marriage to Ahmed the Sultana Bibi, his 
daughter. This traflBc of wives was celebrated by fetes during 
which Ibrahim repeated the follies of Caligula. He was seen 
to appear in public with his beard tressed in precious stones, 
after the example of the Pharaohs of ancient Egypt, to illu- 
minate the bazaars by night and turn darkness into day to 
amuse the fancies of his silly slaves ; the following day he 
caused to be shut up all the shops and even the very gates 
of Constantinople, m order to change the ordinary tumult 
of day into the silence and solitude of night 


Meanwhile internal dissensions began to agitate the 
harem, and the jealousies of the wives were preparing palace 
revolutions. The Sultana Validé Koesem took alarm at the 
influence which the Sultana Tchekerbouli retained, despite 
her rivalries, over the mind of the Sultan. The government 
was escaping from her into the hands of the vile slaves 
whom she herself had given as playthings to her son. The 
shame of this reign recoiled in public opinion upon the 
mother of him who was thus dishonoring the throne. She 
disguised from herself no longer that the Ottomans would 
confound her soon or late in the same reprobation and the 
same punishment. Tchekerbouli and all her faction of men 
and women in the harem were exiled to the recesses of 
Nubia, under pretext of illicit treasures accumulated by this 
favorite during her influence. 

The grand vizier Ahmed augmented the unpopularity of 
Ibrahim in establishing a new impost called the amber and 

histobt'of tubkst. 293 

f%»T tax. The passion of the Sulten for women and for 
downs did but increase by his profusions. His Persian and 
Arabian favorites who used to lull him to sleep by recount- 
ing to him the poetic fables of their country, spoke to him of 
a padischah of ancient times whose palace had for wain- 
scoting, for ceiling, for carpeting, only yelvet cushions 
and the most precious sable peltries. His imagination got 
impassioned for this palace of furs, and his orders despatched 
to the governors of aU his provinces imposed on them this 
tribute of animal skins under severe penalties. He exacted 
also an extraordinary tribute of precious stones for the 
crowns with which he loved to ornament the brow of his 

The murmur arose with the disorder. The judge of 
Galata devoted himself to express it, at the risk of his life, 
in the name of the empire. He put on the habit of a der- 
vish, and overwhelmed, in full divan, the grand vizier with 
the reproaches of the empire and the divine malediction : 
" Do with me what thou wilt," said he to him after ; " I 
have spoken ; there can befall me through my freedom of 
i^ech but three things : either you kill me, and I bles? my 
martyrdom in advance ; or you will banish me, and I rejoice 
in advance at no longer living in a city scandalized by your 
excesses ; or you will despoil me, and 1 have forestalled you 
by despoiling myself and taking the cowl of the dervish." 

The Sultana Koesem, despite her title of mother and her 
old autibority, displeased by her representations to her son, 
and was exiled from the seraglio into the garden of the sub- 
urb, called the ^rden of Iskender-TchelebL The principal 
officers of the Janissaries, who were mutely indignant at 
these excesses, were invited to a feast given by me grand 
viiier at the gate ^' of Gannons," under pretext of celebrat- 
ing the marriage of his son with a daughter of the Sultan. 
This banquet was to be ensanguined by their execution. 

Informed on entering of the destiny which awaited them, 
they hastened to take flight to the mosque of the centre, a 
place consecrated by the great seditions of the troops, and 
to convoke the chiefs and veterans of all the armed corps of 
the ci^ital : the muffci, the preachers, the oulemas, the agas. 
A signal only was wanting to the revolt consummated 
ab-eady morally. At the dawn of day, the Janissaries, with- 
out weapons and with folded arms, surrounded the mosque; 
the pac^e awaited silently the deliberation of the oulemas. 

S94 nmoET ot tubkst. 

The seraglio, abandoned, tremUed at its soHtode. IbraUm 
sent at last to the mofii a chamberlain to ask him the oanse 
of this illicit assemblage. 

" Let the padisohah,^' replied the mufti in the name of 
all, ** deliver ns the grand vizier, otherwise we do not dis- 
perse." Without waiting the answer of the Sultan, th« 
assembly deposed the grand vizier, and appointed in his stead 
one of those men who occur sometimes to the memory of the 
multitude on account of their venr obscurity. It was Sofi- 
Mohammed-Pasha or Mohammed the Pious, a former spahi, 
become defberdar or treasurer of the empire under Otiiman 
IL, and retired since, to consecrate himself to prayer and to 
virtue, in a garden of the suburbs, where he practised the 
philosophy of the cénobites. Tom from this garden by 
the oulemas ttnd the agas, the presence of this venerable old 
man in the mosque caused a burst of acclamation and of 
tears. The people imagined they sanctified their revolution 
by placing it under the auspices of sudi virtue. 

Sofi-Mohammed, thus proclaimed, presented himself, de- 
spite the assembly, at the seradio, to obtain the princess rati- 
fication of the nomination of me people. He kissed respect- 
fully the skirt of the Sultan's peliisse. '' I have deposed 
Ahmed," said Ibrahim to him ; '^ but how wouldst thou have 
me deliver to his enemies him who is the husband of my 
daughter. Go, and answer to me for his life." 

Sofi-Mohammed returned to the mosque to implore the 
pardon of Ahmed. His intercessions failed before the fury 
of the multitude. He returned in consternation to ihe 

" Old dog," said to him Ibrahim, who had resumed con- 
fidence from the sloth of the revolters, " it is thou who hast 
excited the troops, to become vizier ; but never mind, thy 
turn will come." He maltreated with blows of the fist the 
old man, innocent of all participation in the émeute. Sofi- 
Mohammed, insulted and buffeted by the prince, overwhelmed 
by the people, impotent between both, came off from the 
seraglio and took refuge in his garden. 

The chiefs of the troops and of the multitude pursued 
him thither and brought him back by force to the mosque of 
the centre. They at the same time had Hie gates of the city 
occupied by detachments charged to intercept the communi- 
oations of the seraglio with the provinces; they sent to the 
Sultana Koesem, exiled in the garden of Iskender-Tchelebi, 


a guard of honor to protect her against the attempts of her 
son and bade her watch over the life of the princes, her 
ffrandsons, the hope of the empire. From the retirement of 
her garden, the ^nltana Koesem, at the same time mother 
and politician, directed through her agents among the troops 
all the threads of the reyolution. 


Already the rebels spoke openly of deposing the Sultan 
himselfl *' Has he not murdered Salih-Pasha ? '' said they ; 
*'has he not murdered Wardar-Ali, the only man then 
oapable of reforming the empire ? Has not his body been 
without sepulture lor twenty days, the prey of dogs and 
ravens at the gate of the seraglio ? " — ^^ The padi^hah," 
said the most moderate of the orators at the mosque, ^' has 
lost the world by brigandage and tyranny ; the populations 
are ruined, the infidels have taken fifty strongholds of Bos- 
nia and blockaded the Dardanelles : let him' depose his vi- 
zier, let him give to us his head, let him banish his favo- 
rites, and we will disperse." 

These discourses, reported to Ibrahim, were eluded by 
him as powerless murmurs. Ten thousand artillery-men and 
bostandjis encamped with cannon in the courts gave him 
assurance as to his life. Night fell ; the oulemas, satisfied 
by vain roeeches, were retiring one by one, deferring to the 
morrow the resolutions to be taken. " Imprudent men," said 
the officers, *' if we disperse this night, it will be impossible 
to assemble us to-morrow ; let us not separate imtil order 
be re-estalished in the world ; let us pass together the night 
in the mosque." 

The Janissaries took possession respectfully of the oule- 
mas, and offered them for the night a military hospitality in 
their barracks adjoining the mosque. 


Meanwhile the grand vixier Ahmed, betrayed in his 
crime by the indiscretion of his accomplices, had interrupted 
the fete which he was giving in his garden on occasion of the 
marriage of his son, and hâ retire with his principal offi- 
wrs into the seraglio, protected by his guards from Ûie noo- 
tomal riot of the Janissaries. Instructed hour by hour of 


the explosion and of the promss of the hunirrection in the 
moeqne, he had despaired of nis safety. Prorided with six 
thousand dncats in gold carried bj a draft horse, his fingers 
adorned with two rings of the yalue of twenty thousand 
piasters each, with a third ruby ring of which the price was 
inestimable, he had mounted horse in the court of his 
stables, and, attended by two of his inseparable pages, 
Khalil and Abdi, had taken refuge, through some obscure and 
deserted lanes, at the house of the most devoted of his 
Mends, Deli-Burader* 

His retreat beinff soon made known to the rebels, he was 
forced to seek another asylum in the house of Ahmed the 
Long, his former client ; the spies of the oulemas pursued 
thither his traces. He thought to blind them by retiring 
alone on foot, before day, into the house of another of his 
friends, then absent, Hadji-Beïram. 

Hadji-Beïram anticipated the suspicions of the rebels by 
revealing perfidiously himself the retreat of the vizier in his 
harem. The chiaoux tore him thence and conducted him 
before his successor, Sofi-Mohammed. Far from triumphing 
over the catastrophe and the dbtress of his enemy, Sofi-Mo- 
hammed embraced him with tears in his eves, and seated 
him with honor by his side. Ahmed asked nim as the sole 
fi&vor to be permitted to withdraw, for the residue of his 
life, to Mecca, an exile equivalent to apolitical and civil death 
among the Mussulmans. Appeal was made to the mufti to 
determine the lot of the prisoner. The mufti, less compas- 
sionate than Sofi-Mohammed, issued, amid the popular 
acclamations, a fetwa of death against the instrument of the 
crimes of Ibrahim. He was asked, before reading him the 
sentence, for a list of his treasures, on giving him the assur- 
ance that his life would be ransomed by a full avowaL He 
huckstered like a miser, adding at each menace an enormous 
figure, and concealing still the greater portion of his prodi- 
gious opulence. His interrogatory exhausted, he was left 
alone with his attendants in a barred chamber, awaiting the 
pardon which he was promised as the price of the confession of 
his riches. He untied his turban, said a prayer, and laid him 
on the carpet to sleep, his two pages extended at his feet. 

He was awakened under pretext of conducting him before 
Sofi-Mohammed, his protector, who had, it was said, pleaded- 
and obtained his pardon from the troops. Arrived at the 
bottom of the dark staircase, two strong hands seized him 


behind; he turned round and by a torchlight reoogniied the 
headsman Kari-Ali, the usual executioner delivered by him- 
lelf : ^^ Yile giaour»" cried Ahmed on recognizing with horror 
the headsman. ^^ Gracious master," replied ironically Kara- 
Ali, bowing derisively as if to kiss the lappet of his caftan ; 
then seiaing him by one arm as his aid did by the other, the 
two executioners conducted him on foot through the hoot- 
ings of the people along to Cannon-Gate, on the verge of his 
own pleasure-garden, where the day previous he planned the 
murder of the agas of the Janissaries. There, Kara- All 
having struck him down like an ox with a blow of the fist 
upon the forehead, tore off his turban and squeezed the rope 
around his neck His body, placed crosswise npon a horse, 
was thrown upon a heap of rubbish in the place of the Hip- 
podrome^ where the oulemas, on reassembling at the break 
of day in the mosque, recognized him and were encouraged 
by the view of their enemy lying lifeless at their feet. 


The grand judge of Koumelia, Mousslieddin, who went 
with the oulemas to the mosque to induce oblivion of his 
misdeeds by his adhesion to the triumphant revolt, was 
tumbled from his horse, stripped of his turban and dragged 
bareheaded and bloody upon the steps of the peristyle. ^He 
got up and threw himself upon the stirrup of the mufti, em- 
bracing his leg to implore protection against the assassins. 
The white vestments of the pontiff were sprinkled with the 
blood that eushed from the wounds of the judge. The in« 
tercession of the mufti was not able to save the culprit: the 
soldiers prostrated him anew, cut off his head, and placed it 
between the legs of the body laid prone upon the breast, ac- 
cording to the derisive rite of executed infidels. 

The khodja of the Sultan, Djindji, had also dared to pre- 
sent himself at the mosque to participate in the deliberation. 
The death of the ^nd vizier and of the judge of Roumelia 
presaged to him his lot. He exchanged apparel and turban 
with a poor iman of the mosque and escaped, without 
having been recognized, by a gate of the garden. The agaa 
of the Janissaries cast with indignation the blame of those 
two illegal murders upon the populace, excited by the oule- 
mas, more cowardly and more cruel than the soldiers. They 
oame out of the temple and from the steps haranirued the 
VoL.m.— 13» 


Jtidflflaiies, obiding them for ^ase ignoble aasaauiiatioiM 
«nnmitted with impmiitj in their presenee. The Janissa* 
ries, who wished a reyolntion, bat not a massacre, arrested 
the sheddmff of blood by the populace upon the Hippodrome. 
The ottiemaS) entered npon this session, deputed the 
Judge of Mecca, Hassan, to the seraglio to summon the Sol* 
tan to the mosqne. They hoped in this way to wrest him 
from the ten thousand deifenders who were encamped with 
ordnance in the courts» On the refusal of Ibrahim, they 
convoked the Sultana Validé to the meeting, praying her to 
bring along with her the eldest of the princes, Mohammed, 
whom they resolved to proclaim Sultan in place of the pro» 
faner of the throne. 


The Sultana Koesem had all to fear and nothbg more to 
hope from Ibrahim» Deprived of the influence which she 
had hitherto exercised with so much happiness over two 
reigns; sacrificed to the vile favorites who made the son 
ashamed of his deference towards his mother ; witness of 
the humiliati<ms to which Ibrahim subjected his daughters 
Aisché, Fatima, Khaniadé, in the harem, in compelling them 
to hand the ewer and the coffee like servants to his slaves ; 
trembling from day to day for the life of the princes whom 
a caprice of Ibrahim might cause to be strangled even in 
her arms; exiled already in the garden of I^ender; me> 
naoed with a more severe and remote exile to the island of 
Rhodes, the Sultana mother had no hope of safety but in a 
revolution. But if a revolution was necessary to her rescue, 
a deposition followed inevitably by a regicide was repugnant 
to the heart of the mother as much as of the politician. She 
still loved Ibrahim, the child whom she had hidden at the 
peril oi her life from the umbrageous cruelty of Amurath 
lY., and under the name of whom she had ruled sovereignly 
the empire during the years of his adolescence. She be* 
lieved herself more sure of regaining and preserving her 
ascendant near a prince bound hand and foot upon the 
throne, under a council of her own composition, and 
with viciers attached to her cause, than under the govern* 
ment of an infant of violent character and weak intellect 
who would be indebted for the throne to rebels, and who 
would give them through gratitude and through necessity 


tlie antiiarity she wished for hersd£ The part of all-pow* 
erfal arbiter between Ibri^ûm fallen, but not dethroned, and 
the oolemas her acccmiplioes, appeared to her then justly 
preferable to that of cruel mother sacrficing her son to 
erown her grandson. 

She represented to the deputies of the mosque, to the 
mufti and to the old aga of the Janissaries, Mousslieddin, 
orators of the people and of the soldiers, that it was better 
to respect Ibrahim, by wreaking their wrath upon his min- 
isters, than to set the fatal example of deposing a padischah. 
She promised to go immediatly to see him to the seraglio, 
and to dispose him to the concessions and the necessary 
guarantees to preserve the nation from the scandals and the 
degradations which she deplored no less than they. She 
spoke to them of a reign purely nominal, under the surveil- 
lance of a council of government, composed of the oulemas, 
the ^eiks and the agas the most accredited for their virtues, 
their talents and their authority in the capital. After hav- 
ing dismissed them with these prospective views, she dressed 
herself in mourning as a suppliant of the people and of the 
prince ; she likewise robed in mourning her two slaves and 
her black eunuch who carried the &n before her, and coifed 
in a black turban from which fell over her face a dark veil, 
she entered her barge in order to proceed with the two little 
princes to the seraglio. 

She found the courts already invaded by the oulemas, 
^e agas, the judges, the mufbi, the aged Mousslieddin and 
their colleagues. The bostandjis, cdiaken by the ocmstancj 
and the unanimitv of the revolt, had opened the gates to the 
ehi^ and oratora of the mosque of the centre ; a confused 
mass of people and of soldiers without arms inundated 
behind them the approaches of the palace ; they called with 
loud cries for the Sultana Koesem and the young princes. 
She made her appearance alone in the funeral costume we 
have described, preceded by the black eunuch who was fan- 
ning her upon the steps of the gate of Felicity. Her aspect 
imposed sUence on the crowd. This woman represented to 
the eyes of the Ottomans forty years of domination ; the 
dieri^ed memory of a Sultan of whom she had been the 
spouse ; two reigns conducted vigorously by the hands of a 
woman, — the one happy so long as it had followed her sug- 
gestions ; the other full of hope at its commencement, and 
which had soiû: bat wiUi her influence upon her son; she 


represented in fine, in the grandsons that remained to ber, 
tiie whole sarviving dynasty of Othman, and the whole fît- 
tore of the empire. 


Accustomed twice in her life to the tumults and to the 
tragedies of the movements of the multitude and of the 
troops, she spoke to them with that eloquence so natural to 
the Greeks, heightened in her by the habits of State busi- 
ness so long discussed in her presence, and by the energy <^ 
her sentiment of maternity, of patriotism and of ambition. 
She dared, from the opening words, to chide with motherly 
severity those oulemas and those veterans revolted in her 
cause, and demanding more than she judged requisite her- 
self for her security as for the safety of the empire. ^^ Is 
it just, is it wise, is it respectful in you to excite these insur* 
rections ? And are you not all here the privileged slaves of 
this house ? " 

At these words of the Sultana, the veteran MoussUeddin 
dared to interrupt her : ^^ August mistress," replied he to 
her, ^^ what you say is true; we have all received benefits 
from this house, and I more than another, since I enjoy them 
these forty years back ; but it is exactly our attachment to 
your blood and our gratitude for so many benefits ih&t for- 
bid us to look on longer with a culpable indifference upon 
the ruin of this house and of the country indissolubly bound 
up together. Oh I would to God that I had not lived to 
witness such days ! for what do I now need ? What time is 
left me to enjoy riches or dignities by afl ambition which 
would ill become the brief remainder of my days ? 

^^ Mother of the Ottomans ! the folly and the injustice 
of the padischah, your unworthy son, has put the world in 
danger. Our frontiers are dropping ofi^ while he abandons 
himself to pleasures, to debaucheries, to scandalous prodi- 
galities from a treasury ill-replenished by the shameless sale 
of offices. Your oulemas are assembled and they have ren- 
dered a fetwa which declares legitimate the deposition of the 
padischah Ibrahim, and the installation of the young padis- 
cbah, your grandson Mohammed. So long as those acts are 
not accomplished, there is no quiet to be expected from 
either the people or the troops ; yield to our inflexible reso- 
lution ; if you set yourself in opposition to it, it is no longer 


against rerolters, but againtt ike àeomcm of the laws, o£ 
râigion, and of coantrj) that jour soldiers would have to 
conibat ; the revolt will have passed to your side." 

The Sultana felt that it was necessary to give way before 
a resolution sanctioned by the deliberation of the oulemas, 
interpreters of the law, and before the fetwa of the mufti, 
tiiat oracle of religion. She tried, however, a third time to 
prevent the t(^l fall of Ibrahim, and to bring over the chiefs 
of the law and of religion to the idea of a council of re- 
gency which, without deposing her son, would govern in his 
name. The high jud^e of Anatolia, Hanefizadé, a man de- 
liberate and cutting m his words, next spoke in the name 
of the oulemas : 

" Gracious Empress,'^ said he, '' we are come here full of 
confidence in your wisdom and in your patriotism ; you are 
not only the mother of the padischah, bear it in mind, you 
are the venerated mother of all the true believers : the more 
you shorten this crisis of the empire, the better will it be for 
alL Our troops are every where beaten by our enemies ; 
there are no bounds to the traffic of places ; the Sultan, ex- 
clusively occupied in satisfying hb passions, has wandered 
from the paths of the law. The call to prayer upon the 
minarets of Aya-Sofia is deafened by the noise of the fifers 
and trumpeters, of the cymbals and the flutes of the seraglio. 
No one can without danger give counsel to the Sultan, as you 
have experienced yourself The markets are given up to 
pillage ; the innocent are put to death ; the favorite slaves 
govern the uwid" 

The Sultana Validé still essayed to struggle against the 
general will : ^' All these evils," said she to them, *' are the 
doings of bad men ; these should be removed and replaced 
by men of sense and conduct." 

" What would that avaU? " replied Hanefizadé. « Has 
he not had executed men of competence and valor, such as 
Kara-Mustapha and the conqueror of Cydonia, Yousouf- 

'^ But how is it possible to set upon a throne a child of 
seven years ? " objected the Sultana Validé. 

"According to the sentence of our lawyers," rejoined 
Hanefi, " a madman cannot reign, whatever be his a^e, but 
rather an infant endowed with reason : it is on this principle 
that our fetwa is founded. With a sovereign still an infant, 
but possessing rati<mality, a wise viiier may put to order the 

303 mraoBT or tuikit. 

ufoM, while an inauw Snhin rniiit the empire b j mnrder, 
infitmr tod oomtptioii.'' * 

The respeotfolness of this laagnage and the leagth of 
the deliberation, in one of thoee moments which did not ad- 
mit of deliberation, bat of prompt reeolres, drove some <^ 
tiie agas of the troope and aboye all Kara-Tdielebi, a soldier 
without self-eontrof, to aoclamationa of impatience 00 irrer- 
erent to female modesty and to ihe majesty of a sovereign, 
that the historians indicate without daring to repeat them, 
that Kara-Tchelebi afterwards expiated them with justice im 
his own blood. Patience failed the people and the troc^ ; the 
Sultana, humiliated, came to understand that the revolution 
would respect her but so far as she herself riiould conde- 
scend to the will of the revolution. 

*' Very well," said she, without appearing to have heard 
the outrages of Kara-Tchelebi, '* I wiU go for my grandson 
Mohammed, and coif him with the turban." 

An unanimous acclamation called for the grandmoth» 
and the child. The Sultana reappeared at the gate of Fe- 
licity, and presented the boy to the people. He was seated 
upon a throne, before which the crowd defiled in order and 
sUence, for fear the confusion, the multitude, the cries and 
the arms might intimidate to terror and even to tears the 
infant, torn of a sudden from the arms of the women in the 
tumult of a revolution. The bostandjis, to whom his eyes 
were accustomed in the gardens of the seraglio, assured 
the uneasy Sultana of the security of her grands(m ; she 
retired with a heart full of anxiety for Ibrahim. 


During the ceremony of the popidar coronation at the 
gate of fVslicity, the mufti, the viiiers, the oulemas, the 
salihdar, and the general of the bostandjis himself, become 
domestic executors of the will of the people who surrounded 

* This debate and several others In the coarse of tiie irork should 
foraiah matter for refledion to Amezicani. It would show them that tlM 
independence of calling royal mlers to aooonnt is not confined to tiie 
populations of the ** Juigio-Saxon " race. The English deposed their 
sovereign once or twice ; the Ottomans (those British bywords of Oriental 
servility) deposed their saltans some half a dozen times. And these sul- 
tans were, moreover, sovereigns of twenty tunes the conséquence, is 
power, population, territory, of the Epglish. — Trcm^aior» 


the palace, oame to signify to Ibrahim, abandoned by his own 
court, his deposition and the coronation of his son. 

^^ Traitors, '' cried Ibrahim at these words, '^ am I not 
yonr padischah ? 'What does that mean ? " — " No," replied 
Abdoolazis, the most resolute and the most insolent of the 
oulemas ; ^^ no, thou art not our padischah ; thou wast neyer 
such, for thou wast not such in virtue of the laws, and thou 
hast violated thyself all laws, trampled under foot both jus- 
tiae and religion. Thou hast ruined the world; thou hast 
wasted thy time in frivolities and debaucheries; thou hast 
dissipated the treasures of the empire in the gratification of 
puerile or criminal caprices. Corruption and cruelty have 
governed the world in thy place." 

Ibrahim, overwhelmed by these outrages, turned towards 
the mufti and the aged MoijœsHeddin, whose respectful atti- 
tude attested some remains of regard and of pity for him. 
"But at all events am I not your emperor?" said he to 
them. « Why should I quit the throne ? " 

" It will be only for a few days," replied some of the 
deputation. The purpose was to deceive him so that his 
obstinate resistance should not lead the agas to more extreme 
violences than the deposition. 

^^ I understand you," r€(joined he, with a rage which no 
longer considered either the force or the moment or the 
danger; "you are all ingrates and traitors. You are, 
besides, men devoid of reason. What 1 a child of that sise," 
added he with an ironical gesture and lowering his hand 
towards the ground, "is it a child of seven years that you 
mean to make padischah ? But how should such an infant 
reign? You will then appoint also as padischah this old 
imbecile?" in pointing to the aged Mousslieddin. "Be- 
sides, is not that child my son ? " 

Abdoulasiz cut short his speech by outrages so scandalous 
that Uie historian^ witness of the scene, can only mention 
them. He sullied the revolution as Ibrahim had sullied the 
throne. Ibrahim disdained to reply to this flatterer, become 
censor in a di^. He apostrophised anew ^e mufti and re- 
proached him with his ingratitude. " Is it not I who have 
made thee what thou art ? " said he to Mm. " No," replied 
the mufti) adroit at turning upon destiny a gratitude he was 
unwilling to owe to man; " it is not thou, it is the Almighty 

Ibrahim in forcbg the mufti against his will and her 


own to ffire him his onlj daughter in numriage, and in send- 
ing her back afUrwarda with oontempt, had oertainlj changed 
the fayor into an ontrace. The mufti avenged not only the 
empire but his profaned daughter. 

Deaf to those imprecations and maledictions of the Snl' 
tan upon their head, the military agas seised him by both 
arms, and drew him, despite his desperate resistance, into 
the imperial chamber. He resigned himself at length, and 
crossing his arms, become free, upon his breast : '* This," said 
he, bowing ^e head, *^ was written upon my brow ; it is the 
order of God, let as go." 

He was eiint up with two of his fayorite slayes in the 
kiosk of ^* the Birds" — the yestibole of death or of a per- 
petual imprisonment Of his whole empire and his whole 
harem, he had now but a dungeon, a mat and two slayes. 
His mother herself dared not to yisit him, for fear of being 
suspected by the oulemas. 


Meanwhile, like Nero at Home, Ibrahim had still a party 
in the towers and the barracks, where the corruption of 
princes secures by license the yile fayor of the populace. 
Agitation arose in the cafés and in the mess-rooms in his 
name. It was asked by what title lawyers, sheiks and agas 
had precipitated from the throne a legitimate padischah to 
cover their ambition of reiffning in the name of an infant 
scarce out of his cradle. There was an affected alarm at 
this phantom government under a phantom padischah. The 
viiiers and the agas trembled to leave a hope or a pretext for 
this dangerous repentance of the troops. The mufti was 
asked if it was permitted to depose and put to death a padis- 
chah who put the dignities of the empire to auction. 

" Yes," replied laconically the mufti, ^' does not the Koran 
say, ' If there be two khalifs, kill one of them ? ' " 

. Armed with this fetwa which authorized the regicide, the 
mufti, executioner and judge at the same time, the grand 
visier, the judges of the army, the agas of the Janissaries, 
oi the spahis and the other corps, presented themselves at the 
seraglio to execute their sentence. The horror of the regicide, 
the dread of the vengeance, tardy, but infiedlible, which had 
overtaken all the murderers of the first immolated Sultan, 
pity for a prince more despised than hated by his servantS| had 


turned the sera^io into a desert. Pages, bostandjis, capidjis, 
all fled or refused a complicitj in the murder. The mufti 
and the viziers were constrained to force with their own 
hands the door of the kiosk of the Birds, which no one con- 
sented to open. 

When the iron gates were fallen from their hinges beneath 
their blows: "Where is the executioner?'' demanded the 
vizier. The executioner, Kara-Ali, had absconded from fear 
of sullying his hands with the sacred blood of a padischah. 
He was however discovered; he was dragged pale and 
trembling before the murderers ; he fell at the feet of the 
grand vizier, and demanded that he be killed himself rather 
than be forced to kill his padischah, swearing by the heavens 
that his trembling hands and tottering knees would not 
allow him to fulfil his bloody office. 

^^ Cowardly and infamous giaour," said to him the grand 
vizier in dealing him a blow of a stick on the head, " come 
and die ! " " Kara-Ali and Ali-Hammal, aids of the execu- 
tioner, were pushed by. force into the hall of the kiosk. 
They enter with a horde of chiaoux the chamber of the pri- 
soner. The viziers, the mufti, the agas, ranged themselves 
in silence on a lofty and grated platform, whence the eye 
surveyed the interior of the prison lighted by the dome. 

Ibrahim, whom the thickness of the walls had hindered 
from hearing the dumb tumult of the gate and the dialogue 
of the grand vizier with the executioner, was seated, his 
eyes upon the Koran, in a comer of the divan ; his two 
slaves standing and with hands crossed upon the breast, 
seemed to listen to the reading. The Sultan was dressed in a 
black caftan, a red pantaloon tied around the waist with a 
torn shawl; a Grecian cap of wool, dyed in purple, was 
substituted for the turban, the garland of flowers and tho 

Çrecious stones which coifed him in his day of majesty. 
!he paleness, the thinness and the melancholy of his counte- 
nance abeady attested the shade and the lividity of the 

On perceiving on the platform the mufti and the vi- 
ziers, his enemies, and seeing enter his apartment the execu- 
tioner Kara-Ali, a mute personification of death, whom he 
had so often sent himself to his victims, he understood hia 
lot, and rising with a bound, the eyes lifted towards tho 
platform : " Is there then here none of those who have eaten 
of my bread ? " cried he in the tone of a suppliant; " none 


wko would take pity on me and come to m j aid ? Those 
barbarians mean to kill me. Grace 1 oh ! the grace of mere 

Then addressing himself personally to the mnfbi, in 
whose soul he hoped to waken some remains of the old afiisc- 
tion, interrupted by the injury done his daughter : ^*See, 
Abdoul-rahim," said he to him, *^ see how strange is the 
blindness of men and the play of destiny. Yousouf-Pasha had 
adyiaed me to haye thee executed as a fommiter of dtsturb* 
ance and a traitor ; I did not consent to thy death, and thoa 
art now eager for mine. Read the Koran like me, read the 
Word of God, who reproyes cruelties, injustices and in- 

The yiziers made a sign to the executioners to do ihmr 
duty. Kara-Ali and his aids laid their hands upon the 
shoulders of the prisoner ; he escaped from them and fled 
into a comer of the chamber, by the side of his slayes, 
whose feeble hands disputed liim a moment with the execu- 
tioners. While the rope was fastened around his neck, his 
imprecations and maledictions inyoked still the yengeance of 
heayen upon the Ottomans, assassins of their padischah. 
His last breath was a blasphemy against his people. His 
body, taken into the court which separates the Kiosk of 
Birds from the palace, was layed and perfumed by the 
imans, and buried in the tomb of the Sultan Mustapha I., 
near the mosque of Saint Sophia. 

The Koran was read over his graye, and amber and aloes 
burned therein to purify his soul in the smoke of per- 
fumery. The dead tyranny became itself sacred before the 
religion of a people who had sent back the culprit or the 
madman to the true judge. 


The reign, short, stormy and full of palace agitations, of 
a child of seyen years, was but that of the Sultana Koesem, 
sometimes seryed, sometimes thwarted by the ûtctions which 
she had raised, and which she was in her turn constrained to 

The fayorites of Ibrahim were buried aliye in the old 
seraglio. The Sultana Koesem exempted from this exile 
only the young mother of Mohammed, the Sultana Tar- 
khajEi) a Bussian or Polish slaye, whom her ignorance and 

msmmr of tubksy. 307 

lier docilitj to the will of her mother-in-law had r^dered 
KiM>ffeii8iye near her son. The profusions of Ibrahim on his 
women had exhausted the treasury. It was replenished bj 
the confiscations practised on the favorites of that prince. 
His preceptor, the Khodja-Djindji, who had absconded from 
the mosque of the centre, was discovered and tortured by the 
executi(mer to make him confess his riches. Fearing poverty 
more than pain, he avowed only little by little his treasures, 
and when the rack had wrung from him his whole fortune, 
the sabre io6k away his life. 

These extortions upon the favorites of Ibrahim supplied 
the treasury over one hundred and fifty millions of piasters, 
which were distributed in gratuities to the troops to interest 
tiiem in the revolution, the au^rs of which they were 
beginning to accuse. 

The example of the rewarded sedition had already reached 
even the pages of the three seraglios of Constantinople, a 
sort of military and civil colleges where the youths of high 
ûimilies were formed to arms and to affairs to recruit the 
army or the government. Menaced for an act of indiscipline 
with corporal punishment by the capou-aga, the pages re- 
volted, barricaded themselves in their seraglios, and sustained 
a siege against the bostandjis. Their sedition was put down 
only by granting them two hundred promotions of officers in 
the spahis and in the Janissaries. 

Each pasha trafficked his obedience with the ^and vizier 
Sofi-M(^ammed. This old man knew better to humor than 
to ^vern ; the revolution, of which he had been the 
passive instrument, treated him as a tool and not as a min- 
ister ; the spahis, the Janissaries, the oulemas, the agas were 
beginning to charge each other with the death of Ibrahim as 
a crime ; remorse was agitating the barracks. 

" I call God to witness," cried the veteran Mousslieddin, 
'' that I also have taken no part in this murder ; interrogate 
its true authors, the mufti and the grand vizier." 

The pages, combined with the spahis, demanded fiercely 
the punishment of the guilty. The grand vizier and the 
mufti, justly menaced, ordered the Janissaries to keep within 
their barracks. The mufti rendered a fetwa against the 
agitators, conceived in a verse of the Koran : ** If they re- 
volt against each othery slay them untU they respect the 
word of God:' 

This fetwa appeared to allay the sedition ; but the kiaya 


of tiie grand risier, in a mf^i Tfmod ilnoi^ tiie ciiy, haTing 
erased to be deoapitated throe ^pahis, jÂerced Uiroogh the sole 
of their feet with the blade of their lanoes, and left thôr 
bodies exposed upon the Hippodrome. The cry of youpeance 
broke out next morning in the barracka The spahis, o&nded 
at an ignominious punishment in c(Atrayention of their |viT* 
il^es, crossed in a body die Bosphorus between Scutari and 
the point of the seraglio and encamped under flying banners 
on tiLe Hippodrome. The fires of the camp, excited by a 
storm wind, threatened to set the city on fire. They d^KMed 
the regecide mufti and a^^inted in his |daoe the former 
mufti Abousald. This old man eluded the seditious a]^>oini- 
ment, and harangued them to inculcate wiser counsds. 

The Sultana Koesem dictates to her son a kattinscheri^ 
whereby the Sultan conjures the spahis to lay down their 
arms, delivers them the grand visier and the mufti, authors 
of the revolution, and authorises them to designate tbdmselves 
a grand vizier. At the reading of this kattinscherif, the agas 
of the Janissaries, assembled at the seraglio, protest that 
they will defend the grand vizier and tiie mufti, their crea- 
tures. The zeal of tiieir soldiers is stimulated by a present 
of fifty piasters each. The two corps come into conflict 
before the column of Constantine. The Janissaries, a moment 
vanquished, are brought back to the attack of the Hippo- 
drome, by the aged Mousslieddin. Thousands of dead bodies 
strewed this square. 

The heads of the spabis, says the historian Naïma, wit- 
ness and actor in this civil war, were recognized by the gray 
hair under the caps ; the heads of the pages by tiie dark and 
yellow curls of the hair. Pursued by tiie victors and im- 
molated as far as to the court of the mosques, the pages of the 
spahis fled to the summit of the minarets, where was heard 
instead of the call of the muezzin to prayer, cries of terror 
and of supplication, imploring life and forgiveness. Mouss- 
lieddin, no less compassionate than brave, made the fugitives 
come down, and defended them from the fury of the Jan- 
issaries. He permitted the relatives of the revolters to come 
to recognize and bury their sons or their brothers in the 
midst of the dead. The others were thrown without sepul- 
ture into the sea, despite the Mussulman maxim of religious 
legislation : ^^ The dead expur^^te the revolt, the rebel corpses 
must be respected as if their blood had atoned for their 


The spirit of reralt was propagated through the prorinceSé 
To allay it, it was proposed to the divan to confer upon the 
rebel leaders the grades and the goyemments which they 
coveted. The grand vizier consented ; but the inflexible old 
man, Mousslieddin, exclaimed that ^^ the greatest of misfortunes 
to an empire was not to be torn by civil wars, but to have a 
government which conferred honors and recompenses as the 
meed of rebellion." 

One of the chiefs of the party of Caramania, Haïder- 
Oghli, the Turcoman, having been brought loaded with irons 
before the divan, the grand vizier reproached him with his 
crimes. ^' My gracious lord," replied the Turcoman, ^' the 
cub of the wolf becomes a wolf ; each must sell according 
as he buys, and the son follows the example of the father ; 
it is thus that I am become brigand as was my father. Black 

*' Disclose to the divan," continued ihe vizier, " ifhere 
thou hast secreted thy treasures." 

<<Why that is a question to be put one but on the day of 
judgment," replied the prisoner ; ^' do you think, then, that I 
have shed so much blood, burned so many cities, to confess 
to you one by one my plunders? Alas 1 alas 1 the night 
approaches. I was bom but yesterday, and I die toHlay ; 
end the thing as quick as possible, it is the only grace I ask 


The Janissaries, abusing their victory, oppressed insolent- 
ly the capital and the provinces : they abducted women from 
Constantinople; they took by storm a bathing house of 
Gallipoli; their agas imposed their caprices on the grand 
vizier, and plotted his ruin after having raised him. The 
Sultana, secretly irritated at the murder of her son Ibrahim 
despite her efforts to preserve at least his life, complotted 
with the agas against the divan and against the mufti. The 
humiliation of the Ottoman arms during these intestine agi- 
tations afforded a fair pretext for her resentments. 

HoQsseXn, left without reinforcements, abandoned the 
siege of Candia, the Venetian fleet burned a part of that of 
the capitan-pasha in the waters of the Archipelago. The 
Sultana, in concert with the agas, convoked a divan on foot 
in the seraglio, to deliberate on the disasters of the fleet 


and of the army. Her Bcm, wbom she had indued to imî> 
tate her attitade, the expression of her eonntenanoe and her 
words, presided over the divan. The grand yisier excused 
himself, allying the difficoltj of the times. The child, read- 
ing his part in the looks of his mother, replied with a frown 
<^ the eyebrows. 

'* Go, thon art not fit to be grand yisier ; ^re up the seal 
of State. And thou," added he in presenting the seal to 
Kara-Monrad, aga of the Janissaries, '* take it ; I will see 
what thou canst do." Then taming towards the grand 
judge, Am-Effendi, supporter and accomplice of the grand 
▼isier, the Sultan reproved him with selling by auction the 
hi^est attributions of justice. '^ Dear child," replied the 
grand judge, astonished, '* who has taught thee that at thy 

This insolence, intended for the Sultana Koesem, set 
boiling her anger and broke her silence. '' When the padis- 
chah delivers a command to his slaves, is it respectful," 
cried she, '* to answer him by sneering : Bear child, who has 
taught thee that ? It is the voice of the world that has 
taught it to him. The very children know our misfortunes, 
and raise their voices against your iniquities. In spite of all 
the treasures extorted and lavished, you have obtained but 
seditions at home and disasters abroad. You wish to put 
me myself to death, I know it, because my vigilance impor- 
tunes you. I have lived through seven reigns, God be 
praised ! and I have governed three of them. If I were to 
die now, the worid would not be recast from top to bottom, 
nor would it on the other hand relapse into ruin ; my life is 
not of such importance. At one time the plan is to put me 
to death, at another to enslave the padischah; but the hour 
is come for choosing between you and him." 

Death must have followed upon words such as these ; the 
new grand vizier, Kara-Mourad, received, orders from the 
Validé to strangle Sofi-Mohammed, his kiaya and his ac- 
complices. The mufti escaped the punishment by flight. 
His place was given, after some time, to Behayi-Effendi, 
whose faculties, enervated by the use of opium, left no ap- 
prehension of any inconvenient intervention in the affairs of 
the Validé. 



The peace of twenty-two years, was renewed with Aus* 
tria, and the siege of Candia renewed with fresh energy by 
Housseïn. But the constant revolts of his lieutenants and 
soldiers against him were neutralizing his courage and his 
tidents. The grand vizier Kara-Mourad, after some rebel- 
lions vanquished in Asia Minor, gave himself up to the idle- 
ness, the intemperance and the debaucheries of his youth. 
His shameful vices scandalized the capital; he passed his 
days in the gardens which he owned in tne Greek villages of 
the environs of Constantinople, where intoxication was bru- 
talizing his mind. He was often seen, attended but by a 
simple muezzin, sacristan of the mosque adjoining his palace, 
a drunkard like himself, returning unsteadily on his horse 
from his drunken orgies out of the city. The public contempt 
for the man was reflected upon the government 

The Sultan erew up in years and in reason. The Sul- 
tana Tarkhan, his mother, dictated to him a menacing kàtti- 
Bcherif for Kara-Mourad. " Have I made thee grand vi- 
zier," said this letter from the hand of a child, " that thou 
shouldest pass thy time in thy gardens and thy vineyards ? 
Occupy thyself with the business of the empire ; otherwise 
I cut off thy head." 

Kara-Mourad, struck with stupor on perusal of this let- 
ter, and anxious to discover which of his enemies had sug- 
gested to the Sultan a remonstrance so superior to his years, 
Bent for the writing-master of the padischah. He was an 
eminent sheik of Mecca, recently invested with the confi- 
dential function, named Beschir-Aga. Interrogated by the 
grand vizier as to the author of the katti-scherif, Beschir- 
Aga vowed that he was utterly ignorant on the subject ; he 
avowed however to Kara-Mourad, that the child, for a few 
days back, had frequently asked him how to write the words 
'' I cut off thy head^^ a usual formula in the last line of 
katti-scherifb. The grand vizier changed audaciously the sus- 
pected writing master for another. The Sultana Tarkhan 
was indignant at this usurpation of her maternal preroga- 
tives. This young Validé, thitherto pliable and docile to the 
will of the Sultana Koesem, her mothfer-in-law, began to be- 
come restive against the prolonged domination which was 
infringing on her private influence with her son. 

The division of parties in the divan was repeated in the 

812 HiaiomT ov tuxist. 

harem. The Saltftna modier, dkeredited in Ae ejes of her 
eon, Kara-Mooimd, the creatnre of the Snltana grandmother. 
Kara-Monrad, by the advice of the aga of the Janissaries, 
Begtasch-Aga, lus kinsman and his friend, resigned of him> 
self his functions into the hands of the young Sultan. " M j 
padischah," said he to him, '^ there ou^ht to be no more than 
one grand yiiier in the empire ; here is the seal : do not gire 
it to a Janissary, for fear of leading to the ruin of the 

He started immediately for Ofen with the title of gor* 
emor of Hungary. Malek- Ahmed-Pasha, a man hitherto 
obscure, but fitvorod by the Sultana Tarkhan, succeeded him. 
The illustrious astronomer of the court, Housseïn, judge of 
Medina, friend of Kara-Mourad, partook in his disgrace. 
Exiled at first into Stenia in Bosnia, then recalled to Constan- 
tinople through the intercession of the Sultana Koesem, his 
protectress, he prophesied, from the inspection of the stars, 
his own end. The mufti Behayi, formerly obliged by him, 
rendered unconsciously a fetwa of death against him, under 
pretext of impiety, but in reality, to please the Sultana Tar- 
khan. The day preceding that on which the secret fetwa was 
to be executed, Housseïn consulted the stars, and recognized 
that the morrow was one of the days of evil omen. He 
ordered to saddle his horses and equip a bark in the morning 
to pass this baleful day beyond aie precincts of Constanti- 
nople. Scarcely had he put to sea than the executioners 
invested his residence, and, embarking upon his track, over- 
took him near the fortress of the JDardanelles, strangled 
him, and threw into the sea the body of one of the first 
astronomers who had raised the science of the heavens, with 
the Turks, almost to the level of Egyptian and Arabian 


The new grand vizier, invested with all the Êivor of the 
Sultana Tarkhan, was Malek- Ahmed, a Georgian by origin, 
brought in childhood to the seraglio, and celebrated for his 

* The reader should keep in mind the " poetio license " of oar 
author's eulogies on Turkish men of letters, and eflpecianj of «etenoe. 
The personage in question now, the text itself presents a plain tutrotoffer. 
We need not^ however, question the good faith of the poet-historian. — 

fOMomt or TUBKST. 313 

«Éflenlûie beauty, wliioh obtained him the surname of the 
Angd, A man of honor, integrity, disinterestedness, he 
iHr<^)0sed to the divan reforms and retrenchments of the exor- 
bitant salaries of the viziers, the agas, the troops, and espe- 
cially of the clergy, which were exhausting the treasury. 
The Sultana Koesem was opposed to these economics which 
went to disaffect the dervishes, those religious tribunes of 
the people, always ready to aggravate its murmurs. 

''Dear soul," replied to her Sarikatib, astronomer of 
the seraglio, disciple of the sa^ and unfortunate Housseïn, 
and secretary of the divan, '' since the worid exists, we have 
not heard that fortresses or provinces have been con<}nered 
or defended by the prayers of dervishes and of mollas. If 
you ask who has gained thb battle, who has taken that for- 
tress? you are answered: it is drunken Ibrahim-Pasha or 
some other pasha debauchee. The maledictions of the der- 
vishes and mollas are as powerless as their prayers, and I 
do not fear to take upon my own head the whole burden of 
their curses.'' 

These economics and some alterations of the nominal 
value of the currency palliated one evil by another. The 
Druses revolted in Syria ; the Kurds, upon ihe frontier of 
Persia ; Smyrna and Salonica, the two commercial places of 
the empire, insursed against their governors ; the luxury oi 
the harems, of the equipages and the tables, devoured at 
Constantinople the revenues of the provinces. The historian 
Ewlia, relates that Mohammed-Pasha, his patron, son of a 
treasurer of the empire, and more celebrated for his table 
than for his exploits, possessed a table service of silver and 
of Chinese porcelain of an incalculable value, napkins em- 
broidered with gold and precious stones, forty cooks who 
relayed each other twenty by twenty when he travelled, in 
order that he should find every where the same luxury and 
the same delicacies : sixty horses carried in his train his 
edible provisions; seven stewards, chiefe of his kitchens, 
directed each a group of his Cooks. 

To ihi& luxury of the great, corresponded as usual the 
misery of the people. The imports, disproportioned to the 
means of the rate-payers, overwhelmed agriculture and com- 
meroe. An insurrection of all the traders and all the work- 
men of Constantinople to exact the abolition of excessive 
taxation, overturned Malek- Ahmed from power. 

The Sultana appomted in his place the saUhdati^ Smk 
Vol. Ill— 14 

314 maicmr cm nmxsr. 

nevadi-PadbA, foraarij aa Abwaa dare, pi o motoi firan 
Ipmde to gnde for his ralor to tke soveniffleiit of His»- 
gtrj. SiawOTBch, by the oonnseli of the Sultana Koeeem, 
went to the barraoka of the Jankaaries to aak their proteo- 
tion for the young Saltan. B^taadi-Aga, the most turbo- 
lifil, ibe moat popular and moat aa^ttona tribene oi thia 
aoldiery, granted it on han^^ tenna, which {daoed thia body 
at the pnoe ùi the grand TÎaîer'a complete deference to their 
lAeaaore. ^ I will obey the orden of my padbchah, and not 
yomra," relied with di|^ty Siawovadi: ''your necks and 
mine oi^t to be in his presence not thick and stifE^ but 
sloider rad ]>Hant as the blade of our sabrée.^' 

The Janiasariea consented to rmess the rmnnant of 
popular seditiim which still ibmmited at the gates ci the 


This calm was but precarious; the fire of hatred waa 
brooding in the harem and coold not £01 to soon break out. 
The Siutana Koesem, from whom the Snltana Validé had 
wrested the empire by the saccessiTe elcTation first of the 
beaatifol Malek- Ahmed, then of the intrepid Siawonsdi- 
Pasha to the rank of grand yizier, wished to retain it at any 
cost Begtasch- Aga, Greek like her, attached to her cause 
by expectation, by ambition, by the genius of intrigue, by 
the community of country, was h^ suf^rt and her instru- 
ment in the military party. She disposed, by her popular- 
ity of the Janissaries, whom she agitated and appeased at 

The Sultana TarUian had it rumored in the harraft, in the 
seia^^ and in the barracks, that the Sultana Koesem was 
conspiring mih Begtasch-Aga, through greed of power, the 
d^oeition and then the murder of her grandscm, Mahomet 
I V. ; idle meant, it was said, to substitute t<^ this child, too 
docile to the influence of the Sultana Tarkhan, his mother, 
another of the grandsons, young Souleiman, son of a mother 
who would let her dominiUie wii£out rivalry the seraglio, from 
the height of her old age and her experience. 

A daye of the harem, named Maleki, charged to super- 
vise the Sultan's beverages, revealed a plc^ of real or im- 
aginary poisoning in a sherbet prepared by the confecUoner 
<» tiie seragUo, OuweîEhAga. Trembling, or feigning to 

mSTOBT Of T0BKBT. 31* 

tremblé to the life of her oMd, the Sultma Tarkban filled 
the palace with terrors and with tears. Nothing attests the 
reality of the crime ; but these accusations preferred on one 
side, on the other repelled as calumnies, were as a signal of 
civil warfare in the capital and in the barracks. 

The Janissaries, notified by the Sultana Koesem of the 
dangers which she ran in the harem where her death waa 
demanded, and agitated by Begtasch-Aga, thronged tumul- 
tuously to the number of ten thousand at the gates of ihe 
seraelio, demanded imperiously the heads of the counsellors 
ci the Sultana Tarkhan, who were ruining the empire, and 
who were dishonoring, in order to depriye her of the tutelage 
of her grandson, the mother of the Ottomans, the patroness 
of the troops, the prorideiioe of tiie warid^ the Sultana 
Koesem. Their cries did not even respect the Sultan, son 
of the enemy of their protectress and of their aga. They 
mingled in their Tociferations against the mother, the niune 
of the Sultan Souleiman, already crowned in their desires as 
in ^e heart of his grandmother. 

This night was brooding over a revolution planned un- 
known to the two children in the seclusion of a harem and in 
the tumult of a barrack. The Sultana Koesem shut up in 
her apartments, with her eunuchs and hw waiting^women, 
expected anzioudy, but with oonfid^ce, that the accomplices 
of Begtasch-Aga, her liberator, would come to knock at the 
gates of the harem, to bring her the head of her rival and 
to demand Souleiman as padisdu^. 


However, publie opimon, that destiny of political move- 
ments, had pronounced within a few hours against the Janis* 
saries and against the Sultana their idoL The deliberate 
and r^igious fidelity of the Ottomans towards their sov- 
erei^, Ihe tender age of Mahomet IV., the interest attaching 
to his innocence and to his helplessness, environed with the 
nuures of perfidy and of ambition ; weanness of the yoke of 
a woman, long a que^i, but whose insatiable passion of 
reigning survived the fitting age; the rumor, fake or true, 
that the widow of Ahmet I., poisoner of her grandson, had 
promised her hand, lœr treasures and the empire, to Begtasdi- 
' Aga, in recompense for the death of her daughter-in-law, the 
Siutana Tarkhan, lor tiie depositicm of Mahomet lY ., fcnr the 

tl6 HiefOBT OV rVVKKT. 

proekmaiioii of Soalemiaii ; horror, in Use, «i Ae pr o toB de d 
plot of poisoning by this nmmlnrftl grandmotiier, «droiUj 
otroolated in the palace and through the dty— all these things 
oonoorred to turn the tide of public oi»nîon in fiiror of 
Mahomet and of his mother. 

An armed faction and a few ooleraas, obstinate instrur 
ments of the grandmother, appeared alone for hmr caose at 
the ffates of the palace ; the entire empire was for her riral 
and her ehild. 


The grand risier Siawonsdi, although surprised in his 
palace by the hour, by the promptitude of the erent, by Ihe 
niffht, was easy about the life and the liberty of the SoUao. 
The seraglio, guarded a^aiiMit all ^nei^^cies, by troops, 
bostandjis, pages and faithful eunuchs, answered to him for 
the young padisohah against all surfurises of the grand- 
mother. His martial character, his fiune as a soldier, iSb ser- 
rices, his old age itself gave him with the public and with 
the i^whis, his an<neirt comrades of the ciunp, a moral author- 
ity with which the Janissaries ^mselTes were obliged to 
compound. No reyolution was po^ble without either the 
concurrence, ike neutrality or the violent death of the grand 
riiier ; but even his death was but a desperate resource oi 
the factions, whom the blood of the upright old man would 
not fidl to expose to the resentm^it of the soldiers and of 
the people. 

Èegtasoh-Aga comprehended ^is impediment to his en- 
terprise, and he resolved to try to elude it before making an 
attempt to vanquish it. While his soldiers were investing on 
every side the palace gardens, to the end of hindering the 
grand vizier from getting in to defend his master, he con- 
voked in a mosque adjac^it to the principal gate of the 
seraglio, the viziers, the oulemas, the f^as and the mess-mas- 
ters of the party of the Sultana Koesem. Sure of the 
majority, of the complicity and of the hand of all these con- 
spirators, he sent to summon the grand vizier to appear im- 
mediately in that assembly to confer with him on the noctur- 
nal movements of the capital. The grand vizier, disarmed 
and surprised in his palace by a military sedition, of which 
the aga of the Janissaries was himself the mover, had not 
time to deliberate. His daring and his codoess w&m the 


oaI J resonree for the safety of the empire and of his master* 
He presented himself with an apparent compkisance at the 
invitation of Begtasoh. 

The Janissaries and the oolemas reoeiyed him in the. 
mosqae with the respect and the deference which the fac- 
tions, uncertain of the fortune of the day, affect towards 
those wh<Mn they would seduce before intimidating them. 
Begtasoh- Affa addressed the meeting in the name of alL 
He deplored the degradation of their military ^ery, the 
frontiers inyaded, the fleets burned, the public offices sold, 
the coin adulterated by the former grand vizier Malek- 
Ahmed ; the eunuchs, under an incapable mother, masters of 
the government, and subjecting the wisdom and the virtues 
of the first statesmen to the boyish whimsies of a child who 
had his words put in his mouth and his katti-scherife in his 
hand. He declared, in the name of the oukmas and the agas 
present and unanimous, that the prolongatipn of such a 
phantom reign would be the ruin of the Ottomans ; that the 
grand vizier himself would obtain from his vain efforts but 
the blame of those disasters, degradation or death ; that the 
sole genius capable of retrieving the tottering empire was 
tiie genius of that woman superior by her experience, and by 
her courage as by her a^e, who had witnessed seven reigns, 
and with whom the jeiuousy of a Sultana Validé without 
talent was disputing, the last but to ^ive it up to slaves and 
eunuchs ; that the sole resort remainmg to the defenders of 
the faith and the country, was to oblige that Sultana with 
her son to descend from the throne, and to restore the reign 
of the Sultana Koesem by proclaiining her other grandson 
the Sultan Souleiman. 

''Swear,'^ added he, addressing himself to the grand 
vizier, ** swear with us, upon the heaa of your ancestors, that 
you will second us in this generous project." 

Siawousch, who did not think he owed the truth to assas- 
sins, feigned to tamper in this conspiracy of public safety, 
and swore by the Koran to aid the rebels in saving the 
country. The conspirators, well satisfied with having nei- 
ger to combat nor to immolate a man so popular for his vir- 
tue, let him depart with honor from the mosque. 

The fiu^n-Ieaders, feeling sure of him, permitted him 

818 HisTomT or tvuxt. 

to pâM die Uoekide of the palftoe aod to entor tiie eerwlie 
by the iron gate of the gardena. The eonidaiits of tiie S«l- 
tana Koesem, kept Ma gate half open to introdaoe, at the 
hour agreed upon, the Janinariea of B^^tasch-Aga into Uie 
harem, where she was to present them, for padiadiah, Prinoe 
Sonleiman. This etrenmstanee oonyinoed him of ih» eomA- 
ranee of the Snltana at tiie premeditated mvder of Maho- 
met lY. He had the gates mstened behind him : he posted 
some bostandjis at all the issaes, and ran to the smiglio, 
resolrd to die or to save the infimt eonfided to his tntela^ 

Meanwhile the chief of the black ennnchs of the Sultan, 
named Sooleiman-Âga, one of those men who die, like a 
tamed Hon, at the feet of the thnme to which ihej are 
chained, had snspected the plot «id anticipated, hj his mea- 
sures, the presence of the grand yisier. The pages, awak- 
ened widi a bound at his roice and at tiie rumor of the 
perils of the Sultan, had massacred their governor whom 
they had wrongly thought an accomplice of the Janissaries, 
forced the doors of their mess-rooms, run to arms and agi- 
tated the yaltadjis, the bostan^is, the eunuchs and the agas 
upon the steps of the sate of Felicity. 

Siawousch-Pasha, in dismounting from his horse before 
his door, harangued energetically the defenders of the 
palace ; then entering with Souleiman-Aga into tàe interior, 
he knocked at the closed doors of the sequestered apartment 
where ike Sultana^ Tarkhan, in ignorance of the tumult of 
Uiis night, was reposing by the si& of her son. The kislar- 
aga of the Sultan, haying refused them entrance, Souleiman- 
Aga laid him dead with a blow of hb poniard, and calling 
the hundred and twenty eunuchs set to guard the child and 
the mother: — ^''What are you doing?" cried he to them 
through the door ; '' you sleep while the Janissaries are in- 
vading the approaches of the seraglio to slaughter you; 
those traitors, in concert with the Sultana Koesem, mean to 
strangle the padischah and to elevate Begtasch-Aga, their 
chief, to the throne by making him marry that old hag whom 
the poison has disappointed, and who now directs the sabre 
against her grandson." 


At these words the doors are opened, the hundred, and 
twenty eunuchs arm themselves with their pozdards, the 


graad Tirier and Sonleiman-Aga prempitate then^lves into 
làe chamber of the Sultana Tarkhan. They awake her, thej 
reyeal to her hastily the iirgen<5y of the peril At the first 
words of the vizier, the Yaudé leaps from the bed beside her 
son, who lay sleeping, with no suspicion of the death suspend- 
ing over his head : " my son 1 " cried she, drooping ovot 
him and embracing him convulsively, " we are lost" The 
boy afirightened sat up in the bed, and extending his arms to 
Souleiman-Aga : " father 1 " said he to him, '* save me ! " 

The vizier and the eunuch, affected at seeing their sove- 
reign implore hi& slaves, threw themselves at the feet of the 
chud and of the mother, ancl swore to sacrifice themselves 
for him. Souleiman-Aga, taking him in his arms, carried 
him in his night-shirt, by the light of the torches, into the 
throne hall, ^ere were assembled all the defenders of the 
seraglio, and holding him up to the view of the pages and the 
bostandjis : '^ Let those who eat the bread and the salt of the 
padischah," cried he, '^ come to his aid." 

At this lurid light, at this spectacle, at this exhortation, 
the viziers, the agas, the pages, the chamberlains, the bos- 
tandjis, the baltadjis fall with an unanimous movement upon 
their knees before this symbol of right, of innocence, of 
majesty, and swear to defend him with their blood. " Don't 
fear, my padischah," said Souleiman-Aga, " please Qod, all 
the heads of your enemies will be to-morrow at your feet." 


During these scenes of frîçhtfulness and feeling in the 
harem, the grand vizier convoked to the palace, under penalty 
• of death against any who should hesitate an hour, all the 
pashas, beglerbegs, (miefs of corps, agas, lewends and mag- 
nates of the empire, with all those of their armed followers 
wliom they should have at hand, and with provisions for three 
days. A lurking hatred against the Janissaries, common 
oppressors, fidelity to the sovereign, affection for the child, 
confidence in Siawousch-Padia, filled before dawn the quays, 
the gardens, the courts, the apartments of the seraglio, with 
an army of all arms whose number was doubled by the en- 
thusiasm of devotedness. All the gun-boats of the fieet and 
the caïques of the harbor debarked there in silence the arms, 
the guns, the munitions of the arsenal, sufficient for a pro- 
tracted siege. 


The tehror of the niffht was changed into fiiry against 
the authors of so detestable a plot The name of the Sul- 
tana Koesem was on every lip. The hundred pages and 
bostandjis, guided by the chief of the black eunucms, Soulei- 
man-Aga, detached themselyes from the throng and directed 
their course in silence towards the kiosk of the grandmother 
to take off from her the Prince Souleiman, in whose name 
die pretended to reign stilL 

The eunuch on guard at the door refused to open ; the 
pages raised their poniards to strike him ; he fell upon his 
knees and implored life in return for the revelations which he 
offered to make to the Sultan. He was led before Mahomet 
IV. ; he threw himself at his feet, and delivered him the key 
of the secret treasures of his grandmother; but at the 
moment when he stammered an excuse and a supplication, a 
bostandji cleft his head with the blow of an axe. The child, 
alarmed, uttered a cry of horror, and hid his face in the 
bosom of one of the eunuchs, who carried him still in his 


Meanwhile the pages and the three hundred eunuchs 
white and black, attached to the personal guard of the Sul- 
tana Koesem, defended heroically the outer doors of the 
kiosk, and piled up the threshold with their dead. Soulei- 
man- Aga placed the Sultan in the hands of the grand vizier, 
and ran, with a band of pages and bostandjb, to reinforce 
the assailants. He was the first to penetrate, hb sabre 
trickling with blood in his hand, the labyrinth familiar to 
eunuchs of the apartments that composed the harem. , 

The Sultana Koesem, at the sound of his footsteps in the 
corridor, thought it was the Janissaries of Begtasdi-Aga 
come to deliver her and bear her to the throne. 

" Are they there ? " said she in a low voice, opening a 
wicket in the door. 

^^ Yes, it is the Janissaries," answered Souleiman- Aga ; 
" only come out." 

But the Sultana, having recognized her error, and fore- 
seeing her ruin in the Ume of voice of the chief of the 
eunuchs attached to her rival, fled for refuge in the dark to 
the n[iost sequestered of her apartments, hid herself in one 
of those deep closets wherein the slaves pack up by day the 

HisxoBT or TiniKST. 321 

matresses and carpets of the ni^t. THere, wrapped up hy 
the hand of one of her women in à roll of matd, she h(^>od 
to escape the first fury of the enemies, and to leaye Begtasch 
time to come and chance her fortune. Bnt the ra^ of the 
icoglans and of the bdtadjis did not stop before either tiie 
inviolability of the harem or before the majesty of the 
mother and the grandmother of so many Saltan& They 
precipitated themselves, in the traces of Sooleiman-Aci, 
into the sacred precincts, where, however, they songht in vain 
for their prey. 

A devoted slave, giving her life for that of her mistress, 
presented herself to them arrayed in a rich costume and said : 
'< Strike, I am the Sultana Koesem." 

They were going to plunge the dagger in her breast, when 
Souleiman-Aga apprised them of their mistake. They 
turned a moment their poniards against the eunuch himself, 
accusing him of connivance wil^ the Sultana Koesem, and 
of wishing to defraud them of their victim. But at the in* 
stant when Souleiman was going to fall by the hand of his 
friends, a baltadji, breaking open the furniture and the closets, 
seized the legs of the Sultana under the mat in which she 
had been rolled. '^ Be silent," said she to him in a low 
voice, " and thy fortune is made for ever." 

But hatred prevailing in the bostandji over avarice, he 
dragged the Sultana from her asylum and called his com- 
nanions to contemplate her. She held still in her hand a 
nandkerdiief full of gold sequins which she had the precau- 
tion to take from her treasury to give the Janissaries whom 
she was expecting. She was dressed, in expectation of the 
events of the night, in the richest stuffs of the imperial ward- 
,robe; her legs and her arms were adorned with precious 
stones ; her fingers biased, by the light of the torches, with 
glittering rings ; she wore as ear-pendants two diamonds of 
the shape and size of a Caramania nut, a present of Achmet 
L, her husband, in the time oi her youâi, her beauty and 
her loves. 

The group of baltadjis and of icoglans, dazzled and 
struck with a remnant of respect at jthe sight of this mother 
Gi the eçipire extended in those imperial ornaments on the 
cupet at their feet, seemed to hesitate between veneration 
and anger. The Sultana, reading their indecision in their 
looks, leaped up with a vigor superior to her years, unfolded 
the han d k er chief, and scattered, to relax their persecution, a 
Vol. in.— 14* 

8tt mSfOBT Of TfTBKSr. 

iiM>w«r of fleqmiiB and of jewoLi on the floor. Vflalt her 
aasftn a ina stooped to pick them up, she fled from chamber to 
ofa*mber throntfh the harem, and attained a gate of the 
gardens where me darkness fàyored her ffight JBnt a page, 
mmre keen than the baltadjis, got np to h^, prostrated her, 
•trailed hard affamst the desperate resistance of this in- 
trepKl woman, and with his knees npon her breast held her in 
calling to him the baltadjis. They ran : one of them, named 
Mohammed*Baltadji, tore, in absence of a cord, one of the 
oortain-ropes of sUk from the door, and stmng it aronnd 
her neck nntU the swooning Snltana appeared to be dead 
beneath the hands of the assassins. Her sable fors, her ear^ 
pendants, her bracelets, her rinss, her necklaces torn from 
her person became the prey of wese executioners. 

They threw the body almost naked, according to the order 
of the fetwa rendered by the mnfbi, on the payement where 
the bodies of criminals are exposed, before the ffate of the 
kiosk of *^ the Birds." He who carried the head was bitten 
on the thumb, by that mouth almost inanimate, with so mu<^ 
force that he could make her unloose the teeth but by a stroke 
of his poniard in the throat. The assassins, belieying her 
dead, were going away to bear the news of her murder to 
the ffate of Felicity, when looking htuck they beheld the 
naked and bleeding phantom of the Sultana getting up and 
making off in the dark. They returned to finish their 
yictim, who had feigned death by a last instinct <^ Hfe. She 
struggled still agamst them with the strength of an athlete, 
and succumbed a second time but to numbers. The cord, 
again strung about her neck and tugged with the handle of 
an axe, wrung at length from her the last breath. The jets 
of blood that issued from the wounds, from the ^nesand from 
the ears of this colossal woman, although she was then oyer 
sey enty, eyinced the greenness of her old age, and the masculine 
energy of that Albimian, whom it was requisite to kill t¥rice 
in order to wrest from her the empire.* 

* I need not cantiQii the ferioas reftdernot to take thif scene tor exact 
history; I'do not» for my part^ think it even plausible romance. The 
coloring transcends the license aUowed historians, howerer ** popnlar.** 
The inddents (of whidi, moreover, I have left out some as too grotssque) 
bear for the most part the stamp of pf^olar imaguiation ; or what 
amounts to ih» same thing, of Oriental puerility. I dare not say that 
they are on this account the less agreeable to geneoral readers, in opposi- 
tion to the use of them by such an artist as Lamartine. But though 
some setting-off may be allowable t» wife the pecfk to instmctiT» xeiâ« 


The crime whidb public luiiied diar^ her with, of 
plotting the deposition, the poisoning, the murder of her 
grandson, is uncertain. Her talents, her services to the 
empire, her long and glorious sway of intellect over three 
reigns, her firm, tranquil and vigorous regency, so long as it' 
was not sapped in the serad[io by the harem, are reid. If 
those three reigns wherein Turkey was retrieved or sustained 
by her baud do not bear her name in history, they bear her 

Adored in her youth, cherished in her maternity, ven- 
erated in her old age, hurled from the regency and from life 
while still in the vigor of her intelligence by one of those 
palace catastrophes of which confusion conceals the mystery, 
her life is a monument of the maternal genius of woman 
affiled to the government of Oriental nations. Rozelana 
was more winning and more a wife, the Sultana Koesem was 
more vigorous and more a mother. The one governed by 
seduction, the other by genius. The reign of the one ended 
with her beauty, the reign of the other but with her life. 
Roxelana owed all to nature, the Sultana Koesem owed all to 

Both the one and the other attest that the institutions 
which proscribe women from public liberty and public life 
are ineffectual, even with the Mussulmans, against nature 
which gives to them different but as many rights as to m^B, 
and that conjugal love or filial piety often restores to a 
superior woman, ev^i in the govermment of empires, what 
the jealousy and the ingratiude of the laws endeavor vainly 
to deny them.* To reign through the love of a husband or 
through the deference of a son, is not to be excluded from the 
throne, it is to reign twice. 


The murder of the Sultana Koesem and the concourse of 

ing, a ooarse excess is shockiiig to the austere migesty of history. It is 
l&e trîckÎDg àSû, qaeen in the fir^peiy of a coarteiaa — TramiXatof. 

* Why, the ooafessioii of tiiose side-door inflaenoe» peculiar to tiie 
sex would of itsdf he an abondant warrant for denying them pnhlio 
powers. For if conceded them, they wonld enjoy, not as the author 
daims, '* as many ** rights, hnt at least doable as many, as man : the 
masculine bill </ rights would be sapwadded to tiie feminine, which is^ 
moveoTer, it seems, almady an overmatch for men and laws. A cnrions 
■amj^ of the kg^ (to say noâûng of philosophy) of even the higher 
order of your sentimental politidaoa— 2VtNuIti(or. 

até BmOftT W TUSKXT. 

the fwpié «round the b«mer of the piophti, th«t OriBaa 
of the Ottomans, nnfturled bj Siawoneeh-Puha befine the 
Mnfflio, tiirew the Janienries into ooneternation by deetroj- 
ing wnr iBaini{Hring of eeditkm, and difioaed terror into the 
eonclave of the rebel leaden at the moeqne. 

B^;taaoh-Aga akme, more interested, as more ^;ailtj, 
persevered in the revolt, and spoke of firing the eajntal to 
foroe the oitisens assembled at the sera^dio to ran to snceor 
their menaoed families and property. He mounted on horse- 
back and appeared before the J anissaries who were mardiing 
back disooun^^ to their barracks. He conjured ihmn to 
return and to shake o£f ihe yoke of the eunuchs who had 
just strangled the mother of the soldiers : '^ We do not mean 
to depose the padisohah," said he to them, retracting his de- 
signs of tiie night before ; ''we only wish to avenge the murder 
of our VaUdé." 

The Janissaries undecided listened with coldness. One 
of them, breaking silence by one of those popular i^postrophes 
which disconcert the tribunes by touching on their secret 
motives, said to him : '' Are you, then, the heir, the son or 
the husband of the Validé, that you should take in hand her 
cause against the padischah ? " 

A sneering laugh burst forth at these words, which made 
allusion to that tide of husband of the old woman, which 
used to be given Begtasch-Asa. The Janissaries abandoned 
him to his perils and returned to obedience. The spahis and 
all those of the Janissaries of the old barracks who had not 
partaken in the movements of the night, presented themselves 
at the gates of the seraglio to swell the number of the de- 
fenders of the throne. The Sultan, by the counsels of Siar 
wousch-Pashs, sent to the mosque of the centre, the now 
deserted seat of the rebellion, an imperious katti-scherif : 
I' You, agas of my Janissaries," said he ; " thou, their general 
in chief ; thou, their general in second; thou, Begtasdi-Aga, 
appear instantly before me in the divan, or otherwise mis- 
fortune will be&ll you." 

Begtasch-Aga, on ihe receipt of this katti-sdierif which 
completed the discouragement of the conspirators, had in 
vain brought before the oarracks the sacks of gold and silver 
designed to corrupt and to retain them ; the Janissaries re- 
fused to open the sacks, for fear of sullyiug their hands with 
the pay of a facHoniti (factieux). The koul-kiaya made haste 
to merit weu of the victorious party by inveighing against 

msxcoer aw tubxbt* 380 

tiie beftd <^ the faetion. He Teptotndheà BegtMd»-Ags 
with haring opened his purse-gtringg only when it became 
neoesaarj to ran«om his life at the cost of his treasoree^ 
The agas, the oulemas and the scuoondar j chiefe, wrote letters 
of excuse and presented thems^yes, as men deceived by an 
adventarer, at the seraglio ; they thought themselres, they 
sidd, accomplishing the wishes of the padisohah. Begtasch- 
Ag^ himself was constrained to follow them. His popn- 
larity in the barracks seemed to him a safeguard against the 
vengeanoe ci the seraglio. 

Siawousch-Pasha, m fact, received with an apparent in^ 
dnl geneethe repentant rebels. He appointed Begtasch- Aga 
governor of Broussa, and ordered him to start wimout delay 
for his ^vemment. Whether from audacity or from terror, 
Begtasch- Aga, instead of leaving, concealed himself in the 
city. Discovered the following day by the new aga of the 
Janissaries, Hassan, he was tied upon an ass, and conducted 
to the seraglio amid the hootings and the curses of the same 
soldiery who acclaimed him the day before. Culpable popu- 
larities do not survive the fall of their idols ; the people love 
every where to make an individual atone for the factions 
which he has mustered ; they love to wash themselves in the 
blood of their leaders from the stain of vanquished seditions. 

The baltadji Mohammed, who had dragged from the 
doset the Sultana Koesem, encountered the insulling cortege 
of Begtasch- Affa : <^ Traitor," cried he to the vanquished 
aga^ '^ what had I done to tltôe that thou shouldst yesterday 
demand my head at the mosque ? " << Miserable assassin," 
refdied Begtasch- Aga, "do not condemn me to see thy 

He was strangled by the mutes in the outer courts of 
the seraglio, and his body cast into the sea. His avarice 
had, in fact, deadened his ambition. There was discovered 
in his bathing-room, sealed up in massive masonry, two im- 
mense vases frill of gold ducats, of sequins and of precious 
stones, presents of the Sultana Validé or products of his 

The astronomer, secretary of the divan, Sarikatib, 
althoii^h a stranger to the conspiracy, expiated the friendship 
which was borne him by the Sultana Validé. A jest of this 
Ottoman Juvenal cost him his life. During the scandal of 
the venality of officers under the last but one crand vizier, 
Sarikatib, leaving the seraglio, was encountered by one of 

Ui fimAi who tmktà hàm iriianoe h» was oomiog. <' I «m 
OQBie," mlied he wiA an aooent of indignation, *'from ïbû 
ilaye marlet" Like Oato, he prereated the executioner by 
the poniard, and died deploring ike deoadenoe of his oonntry. 
The black ensoch, Sooleunaa-Aga, of whcnt the co(d- 
nees and intrepidity snpplied the abe^ce of the grand viiier 
and aared hia master, was raised to the highest grade c€ 
domesticity in the palace, that of kislar-aga. He had been 
rentable grand yiner the night of danger. The SoHana 
Tarkhan, now Validé and mistress of the goremment, com» 
vitted to him, nnder title of kislar-aga, the tutelage <ii the 
child wh(Hn he had preserred^ and the absdnte direction of 
tiie diran. He used his inflnrace with the insolence of an 
Etinopkn parreno. 


Siawonsdi-Pasha soon got tired of the title of Tixier 
purely honorary under a favorite who dictated his orders by 
the mouth of an infant and a woman. '^ It is not the power 
of a grand riiier,'' said he oft^, ^< this shameful skrery to 
whi<^ I am condemned undw nesro eunuchs.'' 

These murmurs were imputed to him as a crime. The 
Sultana, enslaved herself by gratitude to the eunuch, sought 
lU once a grand viiier suffioientiy s^arcmg to sustain the em- 
pire, sufficieotiy resigned to endure a protector in Souleiman- 
Aga. The empire held but one sudi, it was Koq>rilu, a 
pj^ha grown old in wars and councils, a stranger to actions, 
one of these men whom bvor neglects because tixey disdain 
to seek it, and who are left to reach the wane of l^e before 
peo]^e recogpise in them the safety and the grandeur of em- 
pires. His name was already distinguished ; but the dread 
oi his superiority withheld it from i& ears of the Validé. 

The minuch d^nanded of the Sultana-mother the dismis- 
sal and the death of Siawousch-Pasha ; she granted only the 
rénovai, and an exile to Malghara. Scml^unan-Aga had 
appointed in his place an old man who was verging on the 
second in&ncy, named 6ourdji-Mohammed,aged some ninety- 
two years. His <»ducity was his title. Souleiman-Aga 
wkdied to reign under a phantom. He caused the exile ot 
two counsellors of the Siutana who had pronounced the name 
of Koepnlu, and banished this personage himself to Gu#- 
tendjil, in order that distance might eSii^ the ^loodor of 

BUrtOBT 09 rUKKXf. 9SS 

Ub merit Eziortôoiis ffled ihe tr^uiirj ; the pkoes of ag» 
of the Janissaries, of defterdar, of gnuid ehamberlain, of 
riiier, were giren to the court instramente and the bnffooiiB 
of Sonleiman-Aga. Ipsohyr-Padia and Abaia-Pasha, sons 
of the great rebel, revolted in Caramania, and advanced upon 
Broossa. They were shamefullv negotiated with, and their 
retreat and submission purchased by giving them both gov* 
emments and subsidies* 

Egypt, a prey to insurrections and to anarchy, was 
escaping from Ûie direct and regular adminbtration of the 
Porte. The Sultan convoked a solemn divan to deliberate 
on the course to be adopted respecting this important prov- 
ince of the monarchy. The Sultana Validé attended behind 
the grating of the tribune of her s(m. The grand viner, with 
the fistlessness and the loquacity of old age, proposed the first 
and maintained long the baleful system of life government, a 
sort of partial abdication which makes the provinces a life 
possession, and presently hereditary of the pashas. He was 
refuted with eloquence and indignation by Masoud-Pa^a, a 
statesman brought to light by this discussion in a council of 
eunuchs. The grand vizier insisted, and, in his answer, 
daimed to satiety the respect which should be had for his 
great age. 

" My father,'' cried the Sultana, rising with impatience 
and parting the curtains whidi veiled her from the, divan, 
^ we have not here to do with the beard, either white, gray 
or black ; our concern is with the best council and the wisest 

Masoud conquered in this scene the oonfid<mce of the 
Sultana. In the evraiing she convovked a new divan in t^e 
kiosk of the palace, called the kiosk of the SêOj because it 
steeps its walls in the waves. ^ The question req>ected the 
navy. The grand visier discoursed on it as he had done on 
Egypt. Masoud, encoun^ed by the approbation of the 
Validé, convicted him or ignorance and of unskilfalness. 
The Sultan, prepared beforelMmd by the part of his ipother, 
had passed to Gourcyi-Mohammed a katti-scherif : ^' I could 
not read it," said the grand viaier ; " order in the secretaiy 
of the divan that he may read it" 

The mufibi, presept, took the katti-soherif and read: 
^ Thou, my viiier," sud the laconic letter, '^ give up the 

The tremUiog and convuUve hands ot this old man 

328 HI8T0BT or TUBKIT. 

ooidd not unknot the dtrincs of the sQk pone wbordn HkB 
yinen carry the seal upon Sieir breast The grand chamber- 
lain was forced to asnst him in this trembling of his finira 
which still clang pitifollj to this toy of his expiring ambition. 
He stammered some complaints about the injustice and the 
ingratitude of men. Masoud, without decency of sentiment 
or language, apostrophized him with contempt, hopin^^ thereby 
to elerate his own &yor. Gourdji-Mohammed retired wiw 
tears in his eyes. This outrage upon old age is rare amoiugr 
the Ottomans, who think that age is a consecration by Ood, 
and that experience is the liying oracle of business. 

The Sultan assembled the following day the council, and 
was the first to broach the question of dioosing a grand 
yisier. The mufti referred this free choice to the padischah 
alone. Masoud demanded a postponement and the appoint- 
ment for the present of a simple calmakam or lieutenant* 
general of the empire ; others asked for yizier Houssein- 
Pasha, the serdar or generalissimo of the army of CretCi 
esteemed and beloyed by the army. The agas of the Janis- 
saries and of the spahis opposed this, as a measure which 
would take its head from the active army under Houssein 
and give encouragment as well as joy to the Yenetiana 
The Sultana Tarkhan, who was getting bolder in State dis- 
cussions, and who wished to please the generals by back- 
ing their advice, spoke from behind the curtain against the 
choice of the brave Houssein. 

All united on the name of a pasha hitherto obscure, but 
whose reputation for inexorable severity presaged the empire 
an executioner rather than a minbter : it was Ahmed-Pasha, 
a ferocious Albanian, issued from among the pages, become 
kiaya of the grand vizier formerly massacred by the revolted 
spahis upon the Hippodrome, ^scaped with difficulty himself 
on that occasion, and who had retained from those disorderly 
military movements a profound horror of indiscipline, which 
avenged itself of the terror l^at he lutd been made to feel 
by the terror which he struck in turn into the factions. He 
accepted on condition of absolute independence in his acts. 


His brief administration was but a series of reprisals 
against all those who had any way been implicated in the 
li^ seditions. He bearded Souleiman-A^ himself and 


procured ihe exile of this eunuch to tlie recesses of Egypt 
He deposed the mufti for having, in a fit of anger, pulled th« 
beard of an old judge of Caffa in the Crimea. By a quarrel 
with the capitan-paima, he brought about his ears the viziers, 
the agas, the harem. It was rumored that he thought of 
ridding himself of the irksome yoke of the Sultana Validé 
by substituting, like Begtasch-Aga, Souleiman, son of 
another woman, for the young Sultan Mahomet IV. The 
credulity of the harem conspired his fall and his death. 

The Sultana, to conceal the snare from him, was lavish 
of het favors ; she sent him, on the eve of a festival, a caftan 
of sable fur and a poniard of which the hilt was set with 
diamonds. As he was con^atulated upon these favors: 
'^ Fools," said he to his familiars, ^^ how little you know of 
courts I All this is but a presage of my execution. I have, 
to serve the padischah, turned every one against me ; I did 
not reflect that to resist all is to devote one's self to ruin ; I 
reap what I have sown." 

Dreams confirmed him at night in the reflections of the 
day. He was called unexpectedly to the seraglio. He had 
a presentiment of his death, and prepared himself before 
going out by the ablution and the prayer of the dying: 
^^ Thank God," said he in passing the thre^old, ^^ my enemies 
will not live long." 

The Sultan, seeing him come, apostrophized him with a 
borrowed anger beyond his years, and ordered the bostandjis 
to strangle him. 

^' My padischah," said in bowing to him the faithful but 
importunate vizier, " you put me to death unjustly; on the last 
day my two hands wUl press heavily upon your head." The 
child averted his eyes and the mutes pulled the cord. The 
body was delivered to his only daughter to be buried in the 
sepulchre which he had constructed himself underneath the 
cypresses of ScutarL 

His crime was to have served too faithfully a feeble power 
which knew not how to sustain its servants. The capitan- 
pasha, Dervish-Mohammed, his enemy, succeeded him. 


The agitation of the provinces was propagated to the 
capital. A sheik of Ommïah, who passed for a prophet, de- 
clared from the pulpit at Constantinople, in the name of God, 


Hiat ail the calamities of the Ottomans were owii^ to the 
influence of the Soltana Tarkhan, and that it was necessary 
either to exile or to marry her to a pasha who would take hor 
off from the mtrigues of the harem. These exhortatioDS ex- 
citing the people, the fanatic was embarked by night and 
transported into the depths of his mountains. 

The gorenMHT of Bgypt, the eunudi Abderrahman, who 
hastened to Constantinq>le with his treasures from Cairo to 
purchase the place of grand risier, was accused of hadng 
oonourred in tne murder of the Sultan Ibrahim. '* As soon 
as the registers of Egypt which contain the secret i3i his 
treasures arrive," wrote the Sultana-mother to her son, ^ thoa 
wilt kill him." The grand yisier represented to the Sultan 
that the priyilege of the eunu<^s was not to be executed save 
within the precincts of the seraglio. Abderrahman was 
stra^led on entering. 

This execution struck terror into the eunuchs; their 
abasement by this murder increased the influence of the 
women. The nurse of the Sultan, married by the Sultana 
Koesem to the grand coffin-maker of the seraglio, a favorite 
slare of the same Sultana, named Antar, married to Mour- 
tesa, pasha of Erseroum, disputed with each other the gov- 
ernment of the harem. The young brother of the Sultan, 
Souleiman, the object of so many suspicions, was shut up in 
the kiosk of the '^ Box-garden," a dark vestibule of death, 
a sort of limbo of the pakee, intermediate between the throne 
and the bowstring. 

The new chief of the black eunuchs, Belram-Aga, be- 
come kislar-aga of Mahomet lY., resumed over this child 
the influence taken from Souleiman- Aga by his banishment. 
The pages thanselves, companions of the sports and exercises 
oi Mahomet, were objects <^ jealousy to his mother. -Beïram- 
A^ apprised by the preceptors of the prince of the grow- 
ing familiarities between the Saltan and the pages, remarked 
one day that this boy took a too exciting pleasure in those 
diversi<»)s with children of his age ; he made a sign to him 
to enter his apartments. 

^^My lala," said Mahomet, <^my ancestors, I am certain, 
were, accustomed to pass the fete days in the playroom of 
the paffes to be witnesses of their progress in the exercises 
of boify and mind, and I find in it tte same pleasure as my 

Beïram went to complain to the Sultana Validé of the 


disobedienœ of her son. " Why," said he to her, " do yo» 
permit the Sultan to pass his ni^ts with the pages ? Do 
jou not know, then, that there are some of these youths iHio 
aspire to become his fay(»rites in order to wrest him from 
your authority ? " 

" Aga," replied the indulgent mother to the eunuch, 
*' my lion is yet an innocent child who is amused with the 
sports of his age ; let him stay up till midnight." 

Beïram-Aga, substituting his own harsh severity for the 
motherly tenderness of the validé, returned into the hall of 
the pages, took the Sultan by the hand, and obliged him to 
return, to his apartments, saying to him that this was the 
order of the Validé. 

Q%e diild murmured and shed tears of humiliation ; the 
pi^es, offended, drew their poniards, and ^e mutes had diffi« 
culty in protecting the eunuch against the émeute of these 
fiftvorites. The pages interested in their caiuM» Ihe spahis, 
offended, like them, by an alteration of the currency which 
filched some aspers from their pay. They pillaged the house 
of the defberdar ; they protested against the ordinances oi 
^e aga of the Janissaries which interdicted them the use of 
tobacco. << Leare us free to smoke," cried they in the courts 
of the seraglio, ^* or this smoke which you smoth^ will be- 
come the flame of revolt against you." 


The grand vizier Dervish-Mohammed died in those 
distractions of the empire. Terror and corruption procured 
die appointment of the amnestied agitator of Asia, Ipschyr. 
The title of grand vizier did but increase his audacity. He 
refused to leave Aleppo, of which he was the governor, under 
pretext of disturbances to be appeased in Asia. He ordered 
all the beglerbegs to join him in spring, at Koniah, as if he 
meant to appear as conqueror and not as vizier at Constanti- 
nople : '^ See those troops," said he to the chamberlain iHio 
brought him a letter from the Sultan calling him imme- 
diately to his post, '< and judge if with these forces I will 
stake my head against the letter of a diild." 

Entire Asia considered him a dictator who was gomg to 
purge and to renew the empire ; the court and the capital 
trembled at having added a legal title to so much insolence. 
The irresolution of the divan gave occasion to see&es and 

HiarMT or titeskt. 

wfaMi turned its ddiberatioiui into tamvlts. The 
eapitan-pasha escaped from the poniards of t^ ennuehs, wbo 
reprosehed him, in tlie pretence of the Saltan, with the blood 
of Ibrahim, only bj opening his way to flight with sabre in 
hand. Ipschyr, already arrired from Nioomedia, entered Con* 
stantinople in triomi^ The Sultana YaLidé, to satiate his 
ambition, ga^e him the hand of the young Sultana Aïsdie, 
b<^ daughter, and sister of Mahomet lY. He proscribed 
or immolated all his enemies in t^ divan. 

The defterdar, Morali-Pasha, of whom the Yalidé had 
begged the life, was captured by four chiaoux. Before arriv- 
ing at his place of exile, he was stripped of his clothes, cov- 
ered with the coat of a peasant who was working on the road 
side, and strangled in the fields. The oppression of the new 
visier raised up against him the tro<^ thonselves who had 
been hitherto its instruments in the capital It was insin- 
uated to the Janissaries that the destruction of their body 
was the obiect of his armaments in the provinces and of his 
fikvors to we Asiatic troops, brought with him into the capi- 
tal A petition, carried round by torchlight in the Hippo- 
drome by the Janissaries, demanding the head of Ipschyr 
and of ihie mufti, insurrected in one night the entire city. 

While the grand viiier was taking refuge in the seraglio, 
the revolters pillaged his house and found there four hundred 
thousand ducats in gold, the fruits of his exactions : <^ What 
is to be done ? " cried the Sultan. All were silent in the 
oouncil ; the aga of the Janissaries, emboldened by the dis- 
tress of Ipschyr and unvdling the general enmity against 
the common oppressor, rose: ^^My padischah," said he, 
^ your slaves are satisfied with you ; but they do not wish 
your lala. — So long," added the oapitan-pasha, ^^ as the grand 
vizier and the mufti, his aocon^lice shall live, the troops will 
not disperse." 

Ipschyr, caught in the net of his ambition, prostrated 
himsdf to give up the seal, as humble in adversity as inso- 
lent in his power. ^' It is his head we want," cried the troops 
across the bars of the palace. His head was brought them 
into the Hippodrome. The people passed it from hand to 
hand like a toy, and the soldiers planted it upon the point 
ci a lance. His party died with him : the popularities of 
power {de caserm) strike less root than those of opinion ; 
Abaia-Pasha alone, his accomplice in revolt, whom he kept 
at Scutari at the head of a corps of Asiatics to intimidate 


Ae oapiti^ remuned âi^hfitl to him after his d^ith. One 
half the troops of Abaza had deserted to join in Constanti- 
nople the insnrreoted spahis and Janissaries. Gourd-Mo- 
himimed, formerly kiaja of Ipsohyr and now a deserter of 
his cause, went to Scutari to conjure Abaza to disavow his 
«tead Mend, and to submit himself with his handful of Asia- 
tics to the new yizier. '< Let thy face become purple with 
shame," replied Abaza, shocked at so much baseness, and 
he set off with his troops for the m^mntains of Caramania. 


An Armenian, named Souleiman-Pasha, husband of a 
Sultana, owed the seal to the favor of the Validé. His un- 
decided and feeble hand could not arrest ihe general decay 
of the government. He resigned, and Koeprilu was spoken 
of anew ; but the smallness of his fortune, at a time when 
all was to be purchased, even obedience to the empire, sup- 
plied a pretext for discarding him. " How should a man 
without fortune be able to govern the tvorld f " exclaimed 
Souleiman-Pasha himself. 

The seals were sent to the conqueror of Crete, the serdar 
Housseln. A calmakam was instituted for the mean time. 
It was Sournazen-Pasha, the admiral, a man ambitious and 
turbulent, who aspired to usurp the government himself. 
The agitation which he secretly fomented amongst the troops 
forced the Sultan to hold a divan on foot, — a sort of mili- 
tary and popular session on occasion of seditions. 

The troops demanded that the Sultan should, contrary to 
us]^, come forth from the court of the seraglio by the gate 
of Felicity, to present himself in the AM-Kiosk, situated 
at an angle of the garden and opening by its balconies on 
the square where they were assembled. Mahomet IV. took 
his seat there behind the iron grating. The counsellors of 
his youth surrounded him to prompt him his responses. 
New clamors demanded the removal of those counsellors, 
that the padischah, now at the age of reason, might speak 
from himself; the viziers disappeared from his box. How- 
ever, the two chiefs of the white and of the black eunuchs 
squatted invisibly at his feet to murmur lowly their sugges- 
tions. A judge, named Hassan, speaking on the part of the 
people, demanded the reform of abuses and thirty heads 
registered by name upon a lii^ He threw by way ^ doeu- 

S84 HnfOBT ov TirnsET. 

I oM^bmfttorj of hif ohums a haadftil of oUpp^d vMpetB 
«pon the gromtd— a oarreney whieh was deo^ring and rtdiH 
iag the people. 

The two eamidia, of whom the heads were eompriaed in 
the proaeriptkm liât, made the Sultan utter vague promises 
of redress of those wrongs. The oalmakam adraneed in 
torn to the window and j^mised, in the name of the Sultan, 
that the thirty oulprtts would be deiqpoiled and banished. 
^ But do not ask their heads,'' added he in delwenee to the 
Sultan. ^ Take care of thj own," replied the inflexible erowd. 

The unfortuntae youth saw torn from his feet the two 
ehiefii of eunuohs, his fiivorites, of whom he had thus pleaded 
Tainly the cause. They were stranded b^ore his eyes, and 
thttr bodies were thrown from the height of the balecmy to 
the multitude. Three otiier eunuchs wure precipitated idfter 
them. The lala, the dierished precep^r of Mahomet TV. ; 
the high treasurer; the capou-aga, ^ief of the guards of 
the seraglio, the kular-aca, his mut chamberlain ; the head 
tax-collector, Hassan, the grand marshal of the palace, 
Shaban-Khidifé ; in fine, the aU-powerfnl Méléke, succeesÎYe 
&yorite of two Sultanas Validé, demanded, disputed, tra^ 
fieked and pitilessly refused to the supi^cations and the sobs 
of the Sultan, were flunff lifeless from the same tribune to 
the sokUers and the people. 

This pile of corpses mounted to the level of the balcony 
of the kiosk. The caïmakam Soumasèn-Pasha, picked up, 
as he had joemeditated, the seal of the empire in this blood. 
But scarce had Mahomet lY. jMroclaimed him grand risier 
than the troops his accomplices, envying his fortune, ex- 
claimed on seeing him reoeive the seaLi: '^Wretdi! hasi 
thou ihea insurrected us but to make thyself grand visier ? " 


These cries of just reprobation precipitated him fh>m his 
poflri^ at the very moment when he had come into possession 
of it. So mauy crimes were repaid him but by two hours 
of power. Siawousch-Pasha, the former grand vizier, was 
recalled from Mulghara to resume the tutelage of this 
bloody minority. 

The thirty bodies, dragged by the Janksanes and by the 
nopulace on the place of the Hippodrome, were hung by the 
legs to the branches of an immense i^ano-tree, whereon, by 

BlflSOBT OF TUlSXt. 33ff 

a. j«ft reprisal of time, the mieroiui Mahmoud IL, avenger 
of his ancestors, was destined to haag the bodies of Janissa- 
ries annihilated in their last crime. It is from this tree, à 
living pillory of victims and of execiùiioners, that those 
melancholy days of the youth of Mahomet lY. have received 
the name ^ events of the plane-tree. 

This long massacre and those hideons trophies had not 
sstisied the Janissaries. During ike ten days that preoeded 
the arrival of Siawousch, every morning, the people, on ris- 
ing, came to count the d^ bodies suspended during the 
mght to the branches of <^e plane-tree. 

Siawousch, sick of the gout, a sicbiess exinatory of idle- 
ness and the indulgences of the harem, died on his arrival, 
the very night he caused to be strangled his enemy the def- 
terdar. The victim and the murderer were carried together 
to the £eld of ike dead, goinff to accuse and to excuse each 
other before tixe supreme Ju^ga 

Mohammed-Pawa, ihe wry-necked, governor of Syria, 
was called to the seals. Forty wounds received in the wars 
with Persia, of which one had severed a muscle of ihe neck, 
had obtained him this surname and the office. The new 
caXmakam, Tousouf, {mrged, in awaiting his advent, the city 
£rom the nocturnal bands which oon^ued to reign over ike 
Hippodrome, and to hang the victims pointed out to them on 
the fatal plane-tree. He wrung fr(nn the Janissaries them- 
selves, assembled round the bamier of the Prophet, the pun- 
ishment of their own agitators, Roum-Hassan, Schamli, Jam- 
acali, and Kara-Othman. Their heads were ejqM)sed in tw- 
nnr to their accomplices before the sate of the sera^o and 
under the tree which ^ey had turned into a gibbet. 


It was learned, the day after those massacres, at Con- 
Btantdnoide, that the fleet of the ci^itan-pasha Kenaan was 
destroyed at the mouth of the Dardanelles by the Venetians. 
Eighty vessels or galleys were burned or sunk in this battle 
by Admiral Marcello, whose name remained thenceforth no 
less terrible to the Turks than that of Don John of Austria, 
after the disaster of Lepanto. Tenedos, Lemnos, Samothrace, 
ishinds of the heart of the empire, returned under the do- 
minion of y^iice. 

Mohammed the wry-necked, scarce arrived at Constanti- 

83C BUnOBT 07 TintKBT. 

aM)p^ diâoorered A {dot of the ambitioiis Ma8(md, bceone ittoM 
by the inooiuuderate &yor of the Sultana Tarkhan, too mwk 
banned with his eloquence in the diran. He had conspired 
the deposition of Mahomet lY., and the coronation of Sou 
le!man, of whom he expected the guardianship. Sent in ex- 
ile to Broussa, and conspiring there to revolt Caramania, ihe 
judffe of Broussa, who watched his movements, exposed them 
to &e Porte. A letter of the Sultan ordered t^ judge to 
send his head to the mufti. On receipt of this letter, the 
judge directed the investment, by a bana of simulated hunt^ 
era, of the country house of Masoud, situated on the steeps 
of Mount Olympus. He was taken by surprise, eating fruits 
with his women m a kiosk of his gardens, by moonli|;ht. 

At the sight of his murderers, he did not submit like a 
pontiff, but drew his sabre and foii^ht desperately for lifis 
and for vengeance. His body, left on the brink of the foun- 
tain where he had come to seek the delights of a summer 
night, was visited next day, in throngs, with equal curioûty 
by the Mussulmans and by the Christians of Broussa. The 
one revered in him a martyr, the othera execrated in him a 
persecutor who shut up, while he was mufti, the Christian 
churches of Constantinople. Masoud, the second of the 
muftis deceased by execution, was of the worot sort of per- 
secutors, a persecutor without faith, a hypocrite of fcmati- 
cism. The intrigue, the ambition, the agitation of his life, 
his talents and ms eloquence during this Froruk^ of the 
Turks, under the minority of Mahomet lY., recalls the Car- 
dinal de Retz, in France. Men of tumult, both one and the 
other, they never could attain to the elevated object of their 
ambition ; they looked for glory, they attained noise. 


These executions did not re-open the Dardanelles, block- 
aded at Tenedos by the Yenetians, did not reinforce the army 
of Candia, did not fill up the void (^ the treasury, did not 
restore the fleet, did not recruit the army. The Saltan, who 
was growing up in years and in reason, assembled vainly 
divan upon divan, to infuse, by his reproaches to the vizier, 
some vigor into the monarchy. The fall of Mohammed the 

* A well-known faottoof and Uoody epoch in French kistcny.— > 


wry-Tieehed was resolved by a generous impatience of the 
young Sultan. " I wish," said he one day to the divan, " to 
march myself at the head of the troops against the Vene- 
tians who are ravaging our provinces of Greece : prepare 
me, vizier, an army and a fleet worthy of a padischah." 

The grand vizier pleaded impossibility of extemporizing 
a fleet at a time when indiscipline had ruined the obedience 
of the troops, seditions the organization of the empire, the 
Venetians and the tempests the materials of a new fleet, and 
when the public treasury, receiving no longer the produce of 
the imposts, could be replenished but by voluntary offerings 
from aie enriched, as greedy to retain as they had been 
grasping to acquire. 

The Sultan having communicated this response to his 
mother, die had called to her by night, in a secret interview, 
the old Koeprilu, who carried in his head the council of the 
empire. ^^ All is penshiog," said she to him, ^^ for want of a 
man capable of sustaining and retrieving iJie world ; dost 
thou feel thyself to have, as it is said, the courage and the 
genius to accept, in a situation so desperate, the burden of 
the government ? " 

" Yes," replied the old man, " with the aid of Gtod and 
the blessing of the Sultana Validé, I take the engagement of 
re-establishing all, on condition of controlling aU, of suffer- 
ii^ no equal and no rival in the absolute confidence of the 
Sultan and of his mother, of seeing my orders implicitly rati- 
fied by him, and of being believed by him and by you upon 
my own word, and not upon the calumnies of enemies." 

The Sultana vowed, in the name of her son and on her 
own part, to keep faithMly to the conditions of this absolute 
dictature demanded by the necessary man. The following 
day, Koeprilu received the seal of State, in full divan, from 
the hands of the Sultan, and Mohammed the wry-necked 
was sent into exile. 

The turdy advent of a single man was the restoration of 
A whole people. The hand of the young Sultan, in feeling 
gropingly so many heads, at last lighted on the predestined 
of the empire. 

Vol. III.— 16 

338 HI9T0BT or TITBKXT. 


Wb flhoald neither too miioh depreciate m^i often capa- 
ble, but nnfortmiate, wbo cannot arrest, with all their efforts, 
the decadence of empires, nor too much exalt those who re- 
tricTe them. Independently of merit, there is a destiny 
wUch goes for mndi in the good fortone or the ill saccess of 
statesmen. In the course of human affairs, there are ill- 
chosen moments when nothing is possible even to virtue, to 
heroism, to genius, and whidi seem to doom misfortune to 
those who lire and who reign beneath their influence. There 
are others when those advarse circumstances appear, so to 
say, exhausted, when excess of eril, sheer weariness of anar- 
chy, terror or shame at the general ruin, the return to order, 
that equilibrium of societies, and the coincidences of the 
public mind with fiiyorable events, render all things easy, be- 
cause the most difficult then becomes possible. Evil has its 
excess, as good has its apogee. Arrived at llie summit of 
the good, nations descend; £dlen to the worst, they re- 
mount : it is the law of our human nature, inflrm in crime as 
it is in virtue.* 

* ThÎB paraphrase of the Shakespearian ** tide in the affairs of m^i " 
^^hat political philoic^j of the poets of all times — voaj be oonTenient 
to enslain the contrast, no less sadden than extreme, between Ûte Empire 
and me Republic, in the author's own countiy. Destiny is indeed the 
habitual excuse of failure, if not incompetency, for it spares at once the 
trouble and the exposure of deeper scrutiny : it may be left, however, as 
a charitable consolation to defeat. But where is the human /)rc>^rew, 
the ind^nite perfeotibflity of the party of which Lamartine has been so 
lately the "predestined'' leader, i^ as he now thinks, the social system 
be like that monarch of the song, who marched his soldiers up the hiD 
but to march them down agtun ? — Trandatar. 


Turkey was in one of those honrs when a people is seised 
with shame of itself, and when the prospect of its inevitahle 
rain gives it back the will and the energy of self-salvation. 
The whole merit of Koepriln, this Eichelieu of the Otto- 
mans, was to have faith in this recuperative force of his na- 
tion ; his whole good fortune was to nave been called to the 
government just at the moment when Turkey was willing to 
be governed. A year sooner, he would have been swept 
down in the ^end crash of things and men ; a year later, 
there would be no empire to save. Dates, which are the 
opportunity of things, do not receive sufficient attention, in 
the estimates formed of statesmen by philosophic historians.* 
The years in which they rise are one of the principal ele- 
ments of the justice or the injustice that is done to their 
name. God has reserved himself a larger part than is be- 
lieved in political glories : he who has appeared before Pro- 
vidence calls him is a pest ; he who comes at the nick of the 
age is a great man. Such was Koeprilu, called by the 
western historians Koproli, and more generdly KiuperlL 


Nothing up to those latter times had signalized him for 
the supreme power, and his old age, which was advancing 
with his seventy-second year, seemed rather to detrude him 
from the active scene of public business where he had hitherto 
played parts, though honorable, almost fruitless. 

It was said that his family was of French origin j there 
is nothing to confirm or to contradict it. The family, till 
then obscure, may have floated, like so many others expatri- 
ated by the movement of religions and of races, from the 
coast of France to that of Italy, from that of Italy across 
the Adriatic, and have nationalized itself in Albania. The 
Albanian father of Kiuperli had transported his family and 
his goods into one of the fertile valleys of Asia Minor, near 
Am as i a. The village from which he took his name or to 
which he g^ve his was caJled Koepri (the Bridge) ; it is now 
Called Visir Koepri or Visirs' Bridge, in remembrance of 
three great statesmen given by this liamlet to the glory of 

* This is trne in fact. But it is not tho dates that are of value, but 
the princ^les that give them meaning. And these principles are over> 
looked, not by *' ph&osophic historians," bat by historians without philo- 
sophy, which is as yet the common case. — Trcmdator, 


Uie empire. Situated at tiie foot of a loftj moontain, at the 
oonfluenoe of two torrents which rash to swell the river 
Haljs, an affluent of the Black Sea, it is renowned for its 
waters, for its barley, for its pears, its apples, its raisins, its 
cherries and its wooL It is in bringing quite young by the 
Black Sea, these products of the pastures and of the orchards 
of his father to the market of Constantinople, that Kiuperli, 
acquainted with the purveyors of the palace, became first an 
aid and then the chief of the kitchens of the seraglio. 
Although illiterate like an Albanian shepherd, his intelli- 
gence and his zeal attracted the notice of the grand vizier 
Kara-Mustapha, his compatriot, who brought him out of the 
kitchen to pas him into the army, and to rise from grade to 
grade up to the rank of mirakhor or grand equerry. 

The vicissitudes of those agitated times had kept him 
almost always remote from the court since his youth ; at 
one time governor of Jerusalem, anon of Damascus or of 
Tripoli, always irreproachable and esteemed in his different 
functions, impressing with a hi^ opinion of him the pashas 
who traversed his provinces, dreaded by the factions, beloved 
by the people, and forming around him a clientage of esteem 
and of friendship, which gave umbrage to no superior ambi- 
tion — ^it is thus that he had reached an old age without splen- 
dor but without shade ; one of those men of whom the genius 
is suspected but at the hour of setting. Mohammed the 
wry-necked had recalled him from Damascus, then appointed 
him to the inferior government of Gustendjil, when his name 
began to be pronounced with a low voice in the seraglio. Ki- 
uperli, offended at this unmerited banishment to Gustendjil, 
had postponed his departure, contemplating from the shade 
in which he was placed the anarchies and the ruins of the 

His elevation astonished and scandalized the numerous 
pretenders to power, who were hardly acquainted with his 
name. The oulemas used to say : " Why, he is an ignora- 
mus who can neither wfite nor read." The soldiers said : 
" He is a mere civic administrator who knows nothing of 
war, and who has let himself be vanquished by the rebel, 
Warder-Pasha." The financiers said : ** He is a man with- 
out means, who can do nothing for the penury of the trea- 
sury." All said : " He is an old man, deprived by years of 
that fire of the blood which imparts force to human voli- 
tions ; and he who mounts so late and so high must soon 


descend into the tomb to which alone he should have turned 
his thoughts." 


The first acts of Kiuperli were not slow to belie these 
presages of envy and of ignorance. He renounced from the 
first day the impoverishing system of extortions which put 
capital to flight, and restored gold to the currency by restor- 
ing confidence to proprietors. He energetically refused 
the Sultan the head and treasures of his predecessor, Moham- 
med the tory-neckedj whom the courtiers wished to kill for 
his spoils. 

A religious sedition of the orthodox Mussulmans a^inst 
the derrishes and the sophis their adversaries, having agitated 
the capital some days after his installation, he embarked res- 
olutely for the island of Cyprus all the intolerant fanatics 
who were disturbing the mosques in the name of their mystic 
visions. A mendicant monk, named Turk, on account of his 
savage austerity, who concealed the most shameful lusts be- 
neath the appearance of asceticism, wished to bring back the 
Mussulmans to the nudity of the brute, to proscribe loose 
pantaloons, the use of combs, spoons, as instruments super- 
fluous to man, to whom God had given fingers ; plate, Btufb, 
arts, music, dancing, were likewbe the object of his sumptu- 
ary maledictions. This madman ranted with more indecency 
the philosophical maledictions of Jean-Jacques-Eousseau 
against the state of civilization. ^' But," added he in pro- 
fessing also the famous impeccability of the Christian quietists 
of the seventeenth century, " man once sanctified may give 
himself up in secret, without sin, to all the pleasures of 

Kiuperli exiled him into contempt, instead of populariz- 
ing him by martyrdom ; he removea the mufti who had lent 
a hand, through weakness, to the persecutions of the sect 
of the orthodox, against the sect of the sophis, those Puri- 
tans of Islamism. The defterdar having been assailed with 
stones by the Janissaries on pay day : " Take patience like 
me," said he to him, " until patience gives us strength, and 
have your broken windows repaired ; 3ie day will come." 

Temporization, that policy of the aged, wore out what 
force could not yet crush. Sedition ceased to be popular. 
Behind the vizier the factions began to feel a public opinion, 
that supreme vizier. 

342 msTOBT or tubket. 


The ambassadors of Persia brought pledges of peace; 
tiie Emperor Leopold I. of Germany asked the renewal of 
the truces ; King Gostayos of Sweden implored the aid of 
Kiuperli against the Bossians. He promised it to this 
prince on condition of reconciling himself with the Poles, 
the natural enemies of the^ Russians. The Poles, on their 
part, denounced to him a conspiracy of thé Bussians for 
exciting in the empire a rebellion of all the subjects of the 
Sultan professing aie Greek religion ; he felt the importance 
of such an insurrection at that epoch when the empire 
counted five armed Mussulmans to one unarmed Greek. He 
refused to the Poles the impolitic war wherein they sought 
to engage him at the north, while the war with Venice re- 

auired all his attention and all his forces at the south. Al- 
iiough the Catholic and chiyalrous spirit of the French no- 
bility did violence to the policy of Louis XIV., in going 
individually to fi^ht and die as volunteers in Candia, he 
had no difficulty m retaining that power in the traditional 
alliance of Francis I., through fear of the ascendant which 
the decay of Turkey would give the house of Austria, that 
eternal rival of France. 


The Turkish demagogues of the plane-tree having recom- 
menced their conclaves to resume by terror the ascendant 
which they had wielded on those days of massacre, he went 
to the house of the mufti and demanded a fetwa legitimiz- 
ing in advance all the acts of his administration : " But to 
what purpose ? " asked the mufti, astonished. " To be as- 
sured of your fidelity," replied Kiuperli, " so that if ever the 
enemies of public order should succeed in seducing you or 
intimidating you as they have done your predecessors, this 
writing may testify before the Sultan and before posterity 
that we have acted in concert for the safety of the worW* 

The mufti, bound to his friend by tJbis community of 
purpose, furnished with confidence the fetwa. It contained 
the annihilation of the spahis, those factionists of all the 
revolts. On horseback, at the head of the Janissaries whom 
he had detached from their old accomplices, Kiuperli invested 
them with troops and cannon in their barracks. At the 


dawn of day all the State eprps convoked by his orders at 
the seraglio received from the Saltan, kept invisible, a katti- 
scherif thus conceived : '^ Since my accession to the throne 
the spahis have not ceased to disobey, to trifle with the re- 
spect they owe me and with the honor of the empire. In con- 
sequence we have charged our grand vizier to annihilate them ; 
let the good lend assistance to my vizier against the perverse. 
The chiefs of the rebels must be seized and put to death." 

The measures were taken, the lists drawn up, the guilty 
designated, the fetwa covered all with the authority of law and 
reli^on ; the chiefs, seized by the grand vizier and by the aga 
of the Janissaries, during their nocturnal round, were in the 
hands of the executioners. Sixty heads of fsiction chie&, in 
the number of which were those of the kiaya of the Djebed- 
jis Khalil-Aga, of the grand chamberlain Khasseki, Mous- 
tapha-Aga, fell before the grated window of the seri^lio, 
where, some two years before, the Sultan endured the bloody 
exigence of the factions and delivered to death his eunuchs 
and his preceptor. The weakness of his infancy and the 
outrages inflicted on him were thus washed out on the very 
spot where the offenders had triumphed over him. Kiuperli, 
obscure and timid, so long as the hour had not arrived for 
the complete restoration of the jbhrone, appeared all of a 
sudden to the Ottomans like the armed phantom of justice, 
the executor of the vengeance of God. 

The former grand vizier, Siawousch-Pasha, counting on 
the support of the harem, and spotted with some reminiscen- 
ces of old factions, having temporized with the order of exile 
which he had received, Kiuperli demanded his death as an 
example to obscurer culprits. The Sultan refused by the 
suggestion of his mother. ^' Take back, then, the scab," re- 
joined the inflexible minister, ^^ since despite your engage- 
ments with your slave you do not ratify all that I juc^e 
necessary for your safety." 

" My Ma," replied Mahomet IV., " do as thou wilt ; I 
abandon the heads of all who cross thy designs." The menace 
was sufficient to send off Siawousch. 


Order thus restored internally, he reconstituted the fleet 
and the army, recovered in his wiU the martial vigor of his 
youth, and advanced himself by land at the head of the 


troops on the Enropean coast of the Dardanelles, to raise the 
blockade while the fleet was sailinj; abreast with the army. 
The Janissaries aboard the squadron having faltered at the 
first shock from the Venetian yessels, Kiuperli ordered to 
fire npon the cowards from the coast batteries and forced 
them to return to the charge. The flag-ship of Mocenico, 
admiral of the Venetians, was blown up, being struck in the 
powder-hold by a heated ball from the fortress of the Dar- 
danelles. This explosion set on fire two hundred Venetian 
galleys, cannonaded at the same time from both banks. A 
thick smoke, rolled back along the channel by the south wind, 
covered during two hours the awful mystery of this struggle 
between men, ships, fires, winds and waves. The Ottoman 
fleet had perished with that of the Venetians. The Dar- 
danelles were but one vast cemetery of vessels of which the 
hulks were smoking still. But the sea of the Archipelago 
and of Crete was reopened to the Ottomans. 

" Come, my falcon," cried the Sultan on receiving at his 
return the gunner, Kara-Mahommed, who had pointed the 
cannon at the flag-ship, <^ let the bread of the padischah be 
for ever thy legitmiate nourishment 1 May Gtoa recompense 
the brave such as thou ! " He kissed him on the eyes, at- 
tached with his own hands two aigrettes of precious stones 
to his turban, and stripped off his own caftan to put it on 

Kiuperli did not conceal the cowardice of the Janissaries, 
although interested in managing them for their support of 
him against the spahis : to flatter the faults of his soldiers 
appeared to him as impolitic as to corrupt them. Their kiaya 
and seven of their colonels who had drawn their soldiers into 
flight wore beheaded behind his tent, and their heads thrown 
with contempt into the sea. The capitan-pasha, dreading his 
vengeance, took refuse with some vessels on the coast of 
Africa. Kiuperli quieted his fears by indulgent letters. A 
new squadron, rapidly equipped by his orders, transported 
the vizier and the army to Tenedos. The island fell back 

Sromptly into his hands. Lemnos followed the lot of Tene- 


j^uperli sent from Tenedos to the Sultan an invitation 
to transfer his court to Adriaaople, lest in his absence he 


might be beset by the intrWes of the ambitioTis and by the 
seditions of the people. The passion of Mahomet IV. for 
the chase supplied a pretext for this removal. A pigeon 
which he transpierced with an arrow at the age of eight years 
in the Fresh-water valley, had been chanted by the jpoets of 
the capital as an exploit worthy of his ancestors. This 
Sultan never dreamed of higher glory. 

In 1658, an expedition against Bakoczy, prince of Tran- 
sylvania, removed anew Kiuperli from Adrianople during 
winter. An ally of the hetman of the Cossacks, who fur- 
nished sixty thousand cavalry, Bakoczy, attacked on one side 
by the grand vizier, on the other by two hundred thousand 
Tartar cavalry, who inundated his provinces, left one hundred 
thousand dead upon the field of battle, and took refage with 
his wrecks behind the Theïss. The rest of the youths of 
Transylvania were led into slavery by the Tartars of the 
Crimea. Barcsay was invested by the Porte with the sov- 
ereignty of Transylvania, subject to a yearly tribute of forty 
thousand ducatk. ' '. 


A revolt of Abaza-Hasan in Asia Minor recalled Kiuperli 
to arms. This rebel, companion of Ipschyr, had, as has been 
seen, quitted Scutari with a handful of Turcoman lewends 
after the murder of that vizier. The annihilation of the 
spahis had served him with a pretext for insurrecting anew 
ihe Turcomans, and marching with a hundred thousand horse 
upon Broussa. He despatched thence to the Sultan deputies 
charged to demand the dismissal of Kiuperli, the extermi- 
nator of the spahis. 

"I will not dismiss my faithful vizier," replied Ma- 
homet IV.; "he has executed my orders." He followed 
Kiuperli to Scutari to encounter Abaza. Three pashas and 
thirteen hundred spahis of the army of the Sultan, who were 
discovered to have a secret understanding with the rebels, 
were massacred by order of the grand vizier. 

Mourteza-Pasha, his lieutenant, at the head of fifty thou- 
sand Janissaries, lost eight thousand men in the first battle 
against Abaza. The grand vizier, without reproaching him 
for his reverse, reinforced him with a second army. He drove 
Abaza back to the Euphrates. Perfidious negotiations were 
opened between the two generals before the walls of Aleppo. 
Vol. m.— 15» 


M<mrteta persuaded the simple and erednloos Turcoman fhal 
if he retired from the citj and the citadel of Aleppo, his 
pardon would be easily obtained from KiuperlL Abaza 
withdrew beyond the wails. Monrtesa entered the city. A 
truce reigned between the two camps. Under pretext of a 
ftte of reconciliation, Mourtesa invited Abasa-Hassan to re- 
enter Aleppo with a retinue of cavalry. The inhabitants of 
Aleppo, among whom this escort were billeted, had orders to 
massacre each his guest at the signal of a cannon discharged 
from the fortress. 

At the close of the supper given by Mourtesa-Pasha to 
Abaia, " Give," said he to the pages, " give the pashas, our 
brothers, water for the ablutions of evening prayer." Instead 
of ihe water of ablutions, the posted satellites of Mourteza 
shed at this signal the blood of their guests. Abaza and 
thirty of his generals fell by the dagger of the assassins. 
The cannon-shot announced their parting breath to the hosts 
of the Turcoman cavaliers of the guard ; each of them 
brought a head to Mourteza. Thus perished the revolt by 
treachery — a sad vicissitude of despotic governments. 


The hero almost fabulous of the age, the conqueror of 
Crete, Deli-Housseïn, recalled from Candia, where he had 
shed his blood during so many years for the faith, was sacri- 
ficed, not to the security of the empire, but to the suspicions 
of Kiuperli. Deli-Housseïn had been elevated solely by his 
exploits ; he was incapable of crime. 

Bom at Jenyschyr, of a simple wood-cutter of that valley, 
he had entered the seraglio as baltadji, in his boyhood, under 
Amurath IV. The ambassador of Persia having made a 
present to the Sultan of a bow which the most vivrons ath- 
letes of the capital could not bend, Deli-Housseïn, m carrying 
wood into the chamber of the kislar-aga, found, by chance, 
this bow suspended on the wall. Alone in the apartment, he 
tried his strength upon the bow, and succeeded easily in bend- 
ing it, and tying the string to its two extremities ; then, hear- 
ing the footsteps of the chief of the eunuchs, and fearing to 
be surprbed in his indiscretion, he slid off, leaving the strung 
bow in the chamber. 

The kislar-aga, on entering, was astonished to find the 
bow displaced and ready to receive the arrow. He interro* 


rd Housseïn, who avowed his fault, a fault which became 
fortune and his glory. The Sultan Amurath lY., a 
yigorous archer himself, admired an archer more robust still 
than he, made trial of him in presence of his court, attached 
him to his hunting-service, and ended with making him his 
grand equerry. Instinct for war and hb good fortune did 
ike rest The army knew but his name. He was thought 
of in the extremity of the fortune» of the empire ; he had 
been twice designed for the post of grand vizier. Kiuperli 
dreaded that his military glory might eclipse his own political 
power. He had appointed him capitan-pasha less through 
personal favor than in deference to public opinion. 

Some vague accusations of malversation in the manage- 
ment of the funds of the marine, supplied a pretext for his 
hatred. He communicated his hostility to the Sultan ; the 
Sultan, docile, called Housseïn before him and overwhelmed 
him with abuse. Imprisoned in the Seven Towers, Housseïn 
expiated, two days a^r, his too conspicuous glory by an un- 
grateful death. This death is the sole stain upon KiuperlL 
Perhaps he thought it just and necessary to the security of 
Mahomet IV., on whom the military factions, who were look- 
ing for a chief, would have promptly imposed through Hous- 
seïn the servitude from which he had delivered the empire. 
Perhaps he sacrificed him to the longing of being alone ^reat 
in public opinion afber this rival in influence. Conscience 
and policy are so commingled in the soul of a statesman, in 
despotic governments, that the historians sometimes attribute 
to Grime what is duty, and to duty what is crime. 

The poet Abdi, become afterwards the historian of his 
age, was appointed governor of maritime Arabia, where the 
rebels had propagated the agitation. Syria was purged by 
Ali-Pasha, lieutenant of Kiuperli, of all the Drusian chief- 
tains who were stirring up anew these mountsuns. 

Upon ihe Danube, Michné, Greek by birth, who got him- 
self crowned, by the monks, archduke of Wallachia, insur- 
rected these provinces against the Turks. An army of Tar- 
tars, of Poles and of Cossacks, allies of the empire, defeated 
him at Yassy, killed fifteen thousand of his partisans in a 
battle of three days, and forced him to take refuge in the 

348 HI8T(»tT or TUBKXT. 

imnks of Rmkooij, amongst the last defenders of ike 
of this rebel 

The asylum lent by Austria to the ambitious Rakociy 
became, between Kiuperli and the Austrian ambasador, the 
text of ffrievances which were to end in war. Fidelity to 
the concutions of the truce had honored thus far the Ottoman 
diplomacy. The excursions of Rakoczy into the Austrian 
provinces had been energetically reproved and even repressed 
by the Porte. It was one of Ûte causes of the insurrection 
of the Transylvanians against the Turks. The German 
generals availed themselves of it to take, in the name of this 
vanquished and ousted prince, possession of the strongholds 
and the fortresses of Hungary. The pasha of Ofen, indig- 
nant, marched in his turn against the fortress of Grosswar- 
dein, occupied by the imperialists. Housseïn-Pasha carried 
the place reputed impregnable. ^^ Its ramparts are so high," 
says the Ottoman historiographer, witness of the siege, " that 
a bird could scarce attain the summit, and its trenches are so 
deep that thought itself could not dare to cross them." 

The Russians took advantage of this diversion of the 
Ckrmans to excite the Cossacks oi the Dniester to unite with 
them against the Tartars. The Khan of the Tartars, in- 
formed of those insinuations, raised forty thousand cavalry 
to forestall the Russians. Firasch-Beg, his general, defeated 
their vanguard on the banks of the AreL Seventy thousand 
Russians approached to avenge this defeat. Mohammed- 
Gheraî, Khan of the Tartars, enveloped them with a cloud of 
Tartar and Cossack cavalry, at that time allies ; thirty thou- 
sand Russians were left on the steppes of the field of battle ; 
thirty thousand more were led captive into the Crimea. 

The Poles sent ambassadors to congratulate the Porte on 
this victory over the common enemy. The Russians sent 
also to complain of the aggression of the Tartars. Kiuperli 
temporized in his replies. The symptoms of approaching 
war with Austria forbade him to divide his forces. He re- 
called from Ofen Sidi- Ahmed-Pasha, one of the old rebels 
of whom he had adjourned the punishment, and he ordered the 
seraskier of Hungary, Ali-Pasha, to send him his head. 
Sidi- Ahmed, drawn by treachery into the tent of the seras- 
kier, received five balls in the body, from the hand of the 
chiaoux. He made his way through them despite his wounds, 
sabre in hand, and, leaping on his horse, was going to escape 
from his murderers, when the chiaoux cut the houghs of his 

HiœPOBT OF XtmKBT. 349 

luH-ae. Sîdi- Ahmed in looking back, saw one of his own 
servants taking aim a^ his head : ^' Traitor 1 ruffian !" ex- 
claimed he ; then wrapping himself in his mantle to avoid 
seeing so mnch ingratitude, he waited, like Caesar, without 
movement, to be finally despatched before the tent of the 


A campaign of the Poles and the Tartars against the 
Russians, fomented by Kiuperli, but in which he did not 
engage the Ottoman troops, annihilated, at Azof, twenty 
thousand Cossacks, who had sold themselves this time to the 
Russians. Kiuperli directed the construction of new for- 
tresses to shut up the empire, too open on the north, one at 
the ipouth of the Don, called Seddoul-Islam (barrier of 
Islamism); another on the banks of the Dnieper, at the 
foXcorC^ford ; a third in the middle of the steppes of Tar- 
tary, between the Dnieper and the Don, to consolidate the 
domination over the Tartars themselves, the most numerous, 
the nearest in blood, but the most indisciplinable of his feuda- 
tories ; a fourth between the Caspian and the Black Seas, in 
those deserts which from time to time pour torrents of men 
upon the north and upon the south. 

^ The fortresses of the Dardanelles were multiplied and 
re-armed, to serve as shoals not to be crossed by the new 
fleets which Venice might try to send to the heart of the 
empire. It was then he made this answer to the Austrian 
ambassador, who complained of the assaults of Grosswardein, 
and demanded reparation : ^^ The lion, my master, fears no 
longer either fire or water, and if all the Christian powers 
united by sea and by land wish to try his strength, let them 
do it. I have lived long enough to re-establish, although old 
when come to power, at once the throne of my padischah 
and the religion of the Prophet." 


His genius shed in flickering into extinction its brightest 
fleams. Exhausted of days and glutted hi glory, he felt 
Ufe retiring without afflicting himself at death. His work 
survived him ; his name could not die. He sent to beg the 
Sultan, who venerated him like a father^ to come to his bed- 

3S0 amoBT or tubkbt. 

side to hold a secret divan of deaiii. He beqaeathed him, 
in this loDff interview, his policy : 

'^ All 3ie misfortunes of jour infimcy," said he to him, 
" are come of the infloence of women and their government. 
Give up to them your heart, never your policy. Do not let 
idleness corrupt your troops, and show yourself often at the 
head of your armies, so that the factions may tremble at 
home, and the giaours respect you abroad. As to the trea- 
sury, never suffer it to remain empty, for misfortune may 
at any moment come from the four points of the horiion 
upon an empire so vast as yours ; but no misfortune is irrep- 
arable with a full treasury and a faithful people." 

He expired in peace, after having poured his experience 
into the memory and into the heart of his youog sovereign. 
Gome into power at seventy-two, he had governed but five 
years ; but these five years nad resuscitated Turkey. 


Scarce had Mohammed-Koeprilu or Kiuperli, resigned 
the last breath, than the Sultan called to Adrianople the 
eldest of his sons, Ahmed KiuperlL This young man, 
twenty-six years old, was then caïmakam or lieutenant of his 
father, at Constantinople. Mahomet lY. gave him the seals 
of the empire as a heritage ; it was the 1st November,166r. 

Ahmed Kiuperli, was given by nature the character and 
uncultivated genius of his father ; but he had beside, from 
the good fortune of his birth, a literary and political educa- 
tion which gave completeness to his natural endowments. 
The history of this family, wherein the viziership was three 
times inherited, is in some sort that of the empire for a pe- 
riod of twenty-seven years. Ahmed was the greatest of 
the three Kiuperlis. In this quality, nothing ti^at charac- 
terizes this historic man can be indifferent to the recital: 
the peoples pass away anonymous, they survive to posterity 
but through a few great names. 


Among all the statesmen who by their works have in- 
scribed their names as deeply in the correspondinj^ reigns as 
the kings themselves, he with whom Ahmed KiuperB pre- 
sents the closest analogy is the great English statesman Mr. 

HI8T0BT OF JtTBMîT. 361 

Pitt. Like him, he governed Bovereignlj under a prinoe 
effaced from the throne ; like him, he suooeeded in the flower 
of his youth to the functions and to the genius of a &ther who 
had prepared a successor in his son ; like him, his genius was 
different, but equal to that of his father ; like him, he lived 
but to govern ; his sole personal passion was the passion of 
authority over his nation, of defence of his country, of the 
grandeur of the monarchy ; like him, in fine, he died young, 
and at the work, without having known disgrace, leaving 
after him a renown bitter to the enemies of his country, but 
which is blended, in the mind of the English and of the 
Ottomans, with the patriotism of the country itself. 

Ahmed Kiuperli had had no boyhood. His father, to 
provide against the vicissitudes of fortune and the spolia- 
tions which assail in Turkey the public functionaries more 
than others, wished to secure this cherished son against such 
catastrophes and spoliations by attaching to a body more 
humble, but less exposed, the oulemas. He designed him 
for the civil functions of judge or of mufti His studies had 
been by so much the more precocious and the more serious 
that his father, who could neither read nor write, appreciated 
at a higher value for his son the advantages of an education 
of which he had been deprived himself. The admirable 
aptitude of the young man had corresponded to his opportu- 
nities. Religion, civil law, public law, politics, eloquence, 
history, poetry, the Arabic, Persian, Turkish and Italian 
tongues nourished his intellect and adorned his memory. 
He had drawn from an immense and an assiduous -course of 
reading the maturity of ideas and the elegance of style 
which inspire firmness of thought and fluency of elocution. 
These studies and these tastes for the severe pleasures of the 
intellect had early impressed his attitude and his features 
with a character of gentle reflection and gravity which do 
not impose respect, but which inspire it 

His exterior revealed a precocious maturity. He was 
of tall and noble stature, a little drooped forward ; his fore* 
head was spacious, his eyes frank, his complexion like that 
of a man who has lived in the shade of libraries ; his address 
was humble, becoming, gracious ; the rusticity and bluntness 
of the father had disappeared in the son ; he seemed desir- 
ous rather to have it forgotten than remembered that he was 
the son of a grand viiier. Attached through the philosophy 
which had been taught him, to real and permanent goocfs 


mieh as rirtae and gl^y, rather than to perishable goods snch 
as ambition, sensuality, riches, his disinterestedness was 
exemplary, and the presents which he used to be offered 
were to him offencea A supporter of law and of order by 
duty, never by anger or by passion, he had a horror of the 
tschaouschs, of the chiaouz, of the spahis, those instruments 
of the massacres which dishonored, even under hb father, 
the policy of the divan, and he was unwilling to seek from 
diastisement what he could not obtain from the reason 
and from the interest, well-understood, of the people. The 
khodja of Kiuperli, Othman, a man consummate in wisdom 
and science, had transmitted his virtue to his pupil. 

Such was the man to whom Mahomet lY. was going to 
confide his throne and his empire. Fatigued before having 
lived by the storms that agitated his cradle, happy to 
have found security and peace under the tutelage of a 
minister, alone exposed to the vicissitudes of Mictions, while 
he was enjoying the leisures, the loves, and the recreations 
of youth, addicted to the chase like a son of the Turcomans, 
this Sultan had resolved, as much through instinct as policy, 
to never reign himself, in order to remove from his person 
the terrible troubles and responsibilities of government ; but 
upright and firm in his selections, he knew already how to 
choose his ministers, and to sustain after having well chosen 
them. The name of Kiuperli, independently of the merit 
of him who bore it, appeared to him a celestial designation, 
a name of happy omen for the empire and for hb house. 


Ahmed-Bjiuperli disappointed none of those presages. 
Although young, hb travels in all the provinces of the em- 
pire, the government of Damascus, some campaigns against 
the Kurds and the Druses, and, in fine, his recent exercise 
of the functions of caimakam at Constantinople, as well as 
the example and conversations of hb father, had prepared 
him for public business. He commenced by showing him- 
self severe, in order to afford to be indulgent with impunity. 
He wbhed to relax insensibly the bloody M)rings of the gov- 
ernment ; but he also wished his lenity should not be con- 
strued into weakness, and that authority, in changing its 
regimen, should abate nothing of the respect due it. 

The grand chamberlain, Deli-Hafiz, enemy of Mohammed- 


Kiuperli, his father, having testified an almost factious joy 
at the moment when the shrouded body of the grand yizier 
passed before his house, Ahmed exiled him to Cyprus. The 
mufti having recriminated in the divan against some of the 
executions of the late government : " Who has signed these 
fetwas of death ? " he was asked. " I have," replied the 
mufti ; " but I have signed them through intimidation, and 
because I feared for my own life." " Effendi," said to him 
severely the new grand vizier, " is it for thee, who art versed 
in the law of the prophet, to fear a minister more than thou 

The mufti, dismissed, went to expiate his cowardice to 
Bhodes. The virtuous Sanizadé was appointed mufti in his 


The order so completely re-established in the empire by 
his father permitted him to turn his first attention to Ger- 
many. The first of the Kiuperlis had prepared all in view 
of an energetic repression of the court hostility of Austria. 
The war was kindled of itself in the conterminous provinces 
of the two empires, that is, in Hungary and in Transylvania. 
The commanders of the strongholds of the imperialist party 
and the pashas, governors of provinces on the side of the 
Turks, made war or peace withont the warrant of their re- 

rtive governments. The generals, almost all Italians, of 
army of the Emperor Leopold, and the Lorrain and 
French volunteers, brought to his armies by the fanaticism 
of glory and of religion, made themselves, in the interest of 
the Pope and of Venice, the champions of a holy war which 
policy did not as yet avow. Hungarian and Transylvanian 
partisans,, excited by the chivalry of Germany, of Italy, of 
France, made war now under one pretext, then under another, 
upon the Turkish garrisons of the Danube. 

Ali, pasha of Ofen, having sent Housseïn-Pasha to Hutz 
as negotiator, Housseïn was shot perfidiously by the com- 
mander of Hutz. AU avenged the assassination of his 
ambassador by an incursion into the Palatinate of Marma- 
rosch. Transylvania was kindled; a Transylvanian noble 
received the investiture. The Tartars of tie Crimea, an 
innumerable cavalry, who were to the Turks what the Cos- 
sacks were to the Bussians, having hastened to the call of 

354 HiSTOBT or tubkst. 

Ali-Pashsy reinforced him with forty thousand sabres. Her- 
manstadt and Temeswar were redeemed from conflagration 
but by a ransom of two hundred thousand ducats, an indemnity 
for the expenses of the war made disloyally upon the Turks. 
Kemeny, another pretender to the sovereignty of Tran- 
sylvania, supported indirectly by the Imperialists, re-entered 
with an army of partisans this province after the retreat of 
Ali and of aie Tartars. Vanquished, as had been a year 
before Bakocsy by Koutschouk-Pasha,- lieutenant of Ali, 
Kemeny, thrown from his horse, perished in the route under 
the feet of the pursuing horses of the pasha. 


All presaged an approaching, and, so to say, involuntary 
conflict between the two empires, urged on by their popula- 
tions. Kiuperli would have wished to adjourn the struggle 
until the end of the war with Venice and of the slow con- 
quest of Crete. The party of the harem, on whom his youth 
and inexperience imposed less deference than they were wont 
to pay the old Kiuperli, accused him of procrastination, and 
complained of the too absolute authority which he pretended, 
like bis father, to exercise over the Sultan. The Sultana 
Validé Tarkhan, irritated that he should have removed the 
defterdar Housseïn-Pasha, her creature, represented to her 
son that if deference was laudable when paid to a man of ad- 
vanced age, it was humiliating towards a youns; man who had 
nothing great as yet but pride. She employed, to incite her 
son to the desire of reigning by himself, the insinuations of the 
favorites, and the exhortations even of the sheiks. 

One day as the Sultan was passing on horseback before 
the mosque " of Eoses,'' at Adrianople, whilst a celebrated 
preacher was in the pulpit, Mahomet IV. dismounted, and 
entered to listen to the sacred discourse. The preacher, on 
perceiving the Sultan, changed of a sudden the text, and 
addressing indirectly the padischah : ^' We have placed thee 
upon the earth,'' cried he, citing a verse of the Koran, " to 
be the successor of the Prophet ; judge then thyself with 
justice the men whom we have confided to thee." 

Mahomet IV., another time, by the advice of his mother, 
abstained for some days from the chase, the sole occupation 
of his life ; he placed himself behind the railing of the kiosk 
'^ of Eeviews,'' whence he could see all who attended at the 


audiences of the grand vizier, and punished, himself, severdy, 
all the Christians who presented themselves in the costume 
reserved by the laws for the Mussulmans. A young Arme- 
nian, who, according to the custom tolerated practically, wore 
upon his wedding-day yellow slippers, was torn, by the orders 
of the Sultan, from tiie procession and his bride, and punished 
with death. 

An exercise of authority so puerile and so atrocious made 
Adrianople murmur, and convinced the Sultan himself and 
his mother that the government would be but the ^ap-hazard 
of ignorance and despotism in such hands. The Sultana 
Tarkhan became reconciled to Kiuperli, by means of some 
adroit favors which the grand vizier accorded to the confidant 
of that princess, Schamizadé. A political lea^e between 
these three influences of the seraglio confirmed uie authority 
of the grand vizier. 


Venice, weary of a war which was exhausting its finances 
and arsenals, commenced to negotiate an underhand arrange- 
ment, through Ballarino, its secret agent at Adrianople. 
Kiuperli, attentive to the dispositions of Germany, from 
which he augured a continental war, showed himself disposed 
to divide the possession of Crete with the republic, and to 
adjourn one of those wars in order to turn the whole forces 
of the empire against the Imperialists. A naval encounter 
in the waters of Chio, between the Venetian and the Ottoman 
fleets, broke off by accident these negotiations. Those of 
the Porte with Austria, on the subject of Transylvania, re- 
sulted, at the close of the year 1662, but in a complete 
rupture of the long peace five times renewed under the name 
of truce. The Porte refused definitively to renounce the 
right of appointing the princes of Transylvania. The 16th 
March, 1663, Kiuperli, after having appointed his brother-in- 
law, Kara-Mustapha, caïmakam of Constantinople to answer 
to him for the capital in his absence, set out from Adrianople 
to take upon himself the command of the army. 

The Sultan accompanied his vizier to the first station 
outside Adrianople, and delivered to him with pomp the 
banner of the Prophet and a sabre of which the hilt was 
enriched with diamonds. The army was awaiting him at 
Belgrade ; it received die all-powerfiu vizier as it w<Hild have 


received the Saltan. The two brothers of Kiaperli, Moos- 
tapha-Beg and Ali-Beg, marched at his side ; the entire army 
wheeled round after he passed to accompany him to his tent, 
erected on the crest of the hillocks at the foot of which the 
Danube is confounded with the Save, a river nearly as broad 
as that in which it loses its waters. 

The Baron de Gt>e8 and the Austrian resident at Adri- 
anople, Reninger, plenipotentiaries of the Duke De Sagan, 
minister of the empire, awaited Kiuperli at Belgrade to make 
a last attftnpt at peace. The vizier received them with 
politeness, but coldly ; he conducted them on horseback in 
his train to an elevation from which the eye could take in his 
entire army. It was composed of one hundred and twenty- 
five thousand picked men, of one hundred and twenty-five 
pieces of field artillery, of twelve enormous siege cannons, 
of sixty thousand camels and twelve thousand mules, carrying 
provisions and munitions. One hundred and twenty thou- 
sand Tartars were on their march to swell this host with a 
cloud of badly disciplined and devastating cavalry. Ahmed- 
Oheraï, son of the khan of the Tartars, commanded it. Such 
an army, in the hands of a young man whom the name of 
Koeprilu or Kiuperli rendered formidable to the enemies of 
the empire, was the most eloquent of diplomacies. The con- 
ferences were opened under this impression. 

Kiuperli, to withdraw, demanded only the conditions of 
Soliman the Great, so long accepted by Austria, that is to 
say, the recognition of the right of protection of the Porte 
over Transylvania, the restitution of the Hungarian cities, 
conquered against the faith of treaties by Austrian parti- 
sans, in fine, the renewal of the annual tribute of three hun- 
dred thousand ducats, paid formerly, and now fallen into 
dissuetude by Austria. The plenipotentiaries promised sat- 
isfaction on the two first heads ; as to the last, tbey declared 
that they could not dare to submit to the Duke de Sagan 
a proposition so compromising to the dignity of a great em* 
pire ; they would purchase peace by justice, by deference, 
never by the humiliation of vassalage. 


Kiuperli pushed the army forward as far as Essek, where 
the conferences were renewed as vainly between the same 
plenipotentiaries and Ali-Pasha, serdar of Hungary, com- 


mander of the van^axd of the Ottomans. Ali-Pasha and 
Mohammed-Pasha, his colleague, did not wait for the re- 
sponse from Vienna, to attack the Hungarian army of For- 
gacs and of Palfy at Neuhoeusel. Thirty thousand Hunga- 
rians perished either in the conflict or in the river. Forgacs 
was shut up with the wrecks in Neuhoeusel. Palfy escaped 
with but two hussars and an escort; thousands of heads 
were thrown in heaps at the feet of the vizier, who had com- 
manded himself the movements of the battle. The hundred 
and twenty thousand Tartars arrived on the evening of the 
victory ; the son of the Khan, Ahmed-Gheraï, armed with 
a sabre, with a poniard, with a (quiver, dressed in a vest of 
cloth of gold trimmed with ermine, coifed with a kalpak of 
sable-fur, escorted by Tartars and by Cossacks of the Cri- 
mea in the same costume and with the same Asiatic arms, 
reminded of Timour-Lenk in the midst of his conquests. 

Kiuperli partitioned this multitude into four vast camps 
around the city, and directed himself the assaults. The Hun- 
garians, despite the height and the thickness of their ramparts, 
constrained by a cowardly revolt the Marquis Pio and For- 
gacs, their generals, to capitulate. The victory of Neuhoeu- 
sel, and above al), the fall of this fortress of Hungary 
hitherto reputed impregnable, spread astonishment and con- 
sternation throughout Germany. These triumphs gave to 
Kiuperli the audacity of accomplishing in his own army 
a coup d'etat of omnipotence which he deemed to be requi- 
site for the consolidation of his still recent authority. 

The intimate confidant of the Sultana Validé, Schami- 
zade, who had attended the grand vizier with the army, less 
as a friend than as a jealous inspector of his conduct, con- 
spired with the Sultana the deposition of Kiuperli on the 
first reverse, and wished to elevate in the stead of a minister 
so imperious, his own father-in-law, Ibrahim-Pasha, one of 
the lieutenants of the vizier then in the army with him. 
Kiuperli, informed of this plot, wrote to the Sultan that if 
this rumor of his approaching dismissal was not contradicted 
by the immediate execution of the traitors who boasted of 
succeeding him, his ascendant imdermined in the army would 
ruin the campaign. 

Mahomet IV., without consulting his mother, replied to 
Kiuperli to take counsel but from the safety of the empire. 
The day following this response the favorite of the Sultana 
Validé, Schamizade and his accomplice Ibrahim, were decap- 

3S8 msroBT ov mxxr. 

iUted, to the stapefiM^n of tUe anny, befbre the tent of 
Kiuperli, and their heads, sent to Adrianople, as the heads 
of two traitors, attested the immovabilitj of the minister in 
the favor of the Sultan. The Sultana Tarkhan trembled 
for her own influence and had recourse to her title of 

" My viiier," wrote the Sultan to her, " has earned well 
the bread of my elayes in not having for carpet but the 
stones, and for bod but the earth ; may my bread prcAt 


MeuLwhile, the prince elect of Transylrana, Apafy, was 
oome with his principal partisans to tako shelter under the 
protection of Uie Turkish army. A Transylvanian noble, 
named Haller, suspected of seeking for himself the investi- 
ture of the principality, followed him. Kiuperli gave Apafy 
a disdainful reception, and had Haller beheaded and his body 
east in the river. 

All the fortresses acMacent to Lewens, Novigrad, Neu- 
tra, Freystad, Schintau, fell by the counter-shock of Neu- 
hoeuseL The Tartars, spread through Moravia and Silesia, 
brought back troops of young girls enclosed in sacks on the 
backs of their horses, or coupled two by two like dogs in a 
leash. Their hordes, with torch and sword in hand, gfdloped 
amid flames to within three miles of Olmuti. The domains 
of the princes of Dietriohstein and of Liechtenstein were 
ravaged ; twelve thousand of their vassals were carried into 
slavery and sold in the market of Neuhoeusel. Presburg saw 
burning from the height of its ramparts thirty-two of its 
richest villages. Thirteen hundred wagons laden with women 
and children, chased before them by Uie Cossacks and the 
huzzars of the Khan of Tartary, and eighty thousand Hun- 
garian slaves, marched in files towards Belgrade to peo- 
ple the valleys of Europe or the steppes of the Crimea. 
I^iuperli, without an army of the eaemj before him, and 
calling back his own to Belgrade to winter, left the Tartars 

* After all, the joung soyereign who could mii^rt againsfc sach in- 
flnences, a public servant for his virtaes, was not himself an imbedle. 
Mahomet lY. must have had something of that governmental instinct 
which distingoishes the despots of his race &om all others in histozy. — 

HS3T0BT 09 1*URKSY. 359 

to inundate Hungary. The Poles having sent to him to ask 
the aid of these Tartais against the Russians, he dismissed 
them with the threat of turning his arms against themselves 
if they continued to treat with the Imperialists while he 
was at war with Germany. 

The springof 1664 renewed the invasion of Hungary by 
the army of l^iuperli, refireshed and recruited during the 
wint^. The Sultan, from his harem and from the forests 
of Adrianople, ccmtemplated the exploits of his vizier. He 
had espoused, the year preceding, a young Greek, bom in 
Crete, taken off by the Turks at the capture of Retimo. 
The serdar of Crete, Housseïn, struck by her charms, judged 
her worthy of his master, and offered her as a present to the 
Sultana Yididé. Her name was Rebia Gulmïseh, that is to 
say in Turkish, the bee that sips the vernal roses. The love 
of Mahomet IV. for this black-haired slave soon counter- 
balanced in his heart the authority of the yellow-haired 
Validé, his mother. 

Rebia Gulmïseh gave, in spring, a first son to the Sultan, 
who was named Mustapha. This precocious fecundity con- 
solidated her influence. 


Meanwhile, Germany, threatened with a deeper invasion, 
armed within seven months all its defenders. Zriny, sur- 
named Iron-Pale, had rallied the Hungarians and was ad- 
vancing into Transylvania ; Count de Souches marched upon 
Neutra. Hohenloe, Strozzi, generals of Austria, followed 
by Italian and French cOrps, concerted a plan of campaign 
before the walls of Kanischa, which they besieged. They 
concentrated themselves at Serinwar in order to receive 
there, in a situation solidly entrenched, the onset of Kiuperli. 
Strozzi fell mortally wounded in the conflict. 

Marshal^ MontecucuUi, the first warrior of Italy and 
Germany, came to take the general command of the confed- 
erate army. He established himself in a triangle forti- 
fied by nature between the Mur, the Drave and the re- 
trenched position of Serinwar. Kiuperli could not reach 
him but after surmounting this position defended by the 
city. The number and the impetuosity of the Turks tri- 
umphed over the defenders of Serinwar; Count de Thum, 
who commanded under MontecucuUi, perished on the breach 

880 HmOBT 07 TUBKST. 

with three thoraand Hnnguriuis, the flower of Im troops. 
MonteoQCiilli and Count Golignj, who had bronriit nz thoii- 
sand French yolnnteers, repassed the Mur and barred the 
passage to KinperlL 

The Turkish army, dispersed in detachments of thirty 
to forty thousand men, contented themselves with observing 
the Imperialists and the French, and with besieging one by 
one the plaoes that resisted stilL Montecuculli, too feeUe 
to engage with these divisions,, which would have smothered 
by surrounding him, retired upon the Raab, a river that 
covers Austria. Kiuperli followed closely and encamped 
upon the left banL He was joined there at the village of 
Saint-Gothard, by the plenipotentiaries of Austria, witnesses 
of the oonflamtion of Hungary and of tiie enslavem^it of 
a whole people. 

The same fate which menaced their country, the disparity 
of number between the army of MontecucuUi and that of 
Kiuperli, had made the Emperor Leopold yield : the Duke 
de Sagan, his minister, authorised them to submit, in a per- 
manent treaty, to the necessities and humiliations of defeat. 
Kiuperli, to constrain them to a more complete and a more 
prompt surrender, wished to pass under their eyes the Raab 
at Saint-Gothard, in the hce of the army of MontecucullL 
This general, the hero of his age, surprised at first by the 
impetuosity of the Ottomans, who had forded the river and 
thrown back the Germans upon an amphitheatre of hills, 
yielded a moment the village of Moggersdorf, the centre of 
his position, to the Janissaries who had escaladed it. His 
soldiers were flying, his officers dying at their post ; he him- 
self, with coolness, that genius of character, collected and 
reformed those wrecks. 

When he had reanimated them with his soul, he deployed 
daringly his two wings, one commanded by ike Duke Charles 
of Lorrain, his pupil in the art of war, the other, composed 
wholly of French nobles, under the orders of Count de 
Coligny. These great captains rushing togeUièr upon the 
foremost moiety of the Turkish army, which alone had 
passed the river, threw back the Ottomans into the bed of 
the Baab, half filled up with their dead. Twenty thousand 
Janissaries, the sinew of the army, abandoned on the left 
bank, and hemmed up in their conquest, perished, rather than 
surrender, at the village of Moggersdorf. The three thou- 
sand French cavalry of Coligny and of the Duke de la 


Feoillade, forced their horses into the riyer, at the heels 
of the Turks, and sabred the spahis up to the battery of 

" Who are those youDg girls ? " demanded sneeringly 
Kiuperli -of the Hungarian renegades around him, at the 
sight of the polished cuirasses, of the gaudy head-dresses, of 
the flowing ribbons, and the powdered curls of the hair. 
" They are the French," replied the Hungarians. But this 
effeminate apparel covered Uons of war ; this young nobility 
charged, even to the tents of the vizier, crying, *^ Allons ! 
aUons / itie / iue ! " This cry, 'retained by the Turks, 
served, in the evening, to distinguish the French, compared 
in the morning to women. La Feuillade, their colonel and 
their model, received in this battle from the Janissaries and 
the spahis, the name of Fovladi or the man of steel. 

So much heroism and good fortune was lost; the glory 
alone of Montecuculli was crowned by the victory without 
pursuit of Saint-Gothard. It redeemed the honor of the 
campaign ; it did not repair its disasters. Despite his loss 
of twenty thousand Janissaries, Kiuperli retained still some 
two hundred thousand soldiers, flushed with victory all over 
Hungary. The village and the commemoration chapel of 
Saint-Gothard was the only monument of the day. So much 
bloodshed altered nothing in the conditions of peace agreed 
to in advance by the Emperor Leopold. It was signed at 
Eïsenbourg, the 10th August, such as Kiuperli had dictated 
it at Belgrade. 

Apafy, the client of the Turks, was recognized prince of 
Transylvania, under their suzerainty; the Hungarian pala- 
tinates returned to the Porte; the conquests of the cam- 
paign became the permanent property of the Sultan ; he in- 
terdicted Austria from rebuilding the fortress of Serinwar ; 
the tribute disguised under the name of ambassador's present 
was alleviated, but maintained. Such a peace after such a 
reverse in a continuity of triumphs, might well resound as 
the most splendid victory throughout the empire and in the 
heart of the Sultan. 

Kiuperli led back the army to Belgrade, dismissed with 
a present worthy of his master the Khan of the Tartars, 
followed by one hundred thousand slaves whom his cavalry 
had taken off from Hungary and from Saxony. Kara-Mo- 
hammed- Aga, beglerbeff of Eoumelia, was appointed ambas- 
cuidor of the Porte to V ienna, to carry thiâier the ratifica- 
VoL. III.— 16 

362 HI8T0BT or TUmKKT. 

turn of the treaty of peaoe by the Sultan. Escorted by an 
Asiatic cortege of a hundred and fifty dignitaries of the 
court, the presents which he was charged to present to Leo- 
pold I. consisted of cockades of heron plumes, of aigrettes 
of diamonds, of a vast tent, sustained at the centre by a 
sinffle pillar, of a Persian carpet, of pieces of Indian silk 
and muslin, of two pounds of ambergris, of fourteen riding- 
horses of Arabian or Persian breed, covered with equip- 
ments of gold and precious stones. 


Kiuperli found intact at Adrianople his omnipotence, 
increased by the renown of conqueror and avenir of the 
emperor. The Sultan, in his absence, had made but pacific 
campaigns against the wild beasts, in the forests adjacent to 
Adrianople. His historiographer, Abdi, was charged to 
record in his annals, as historical events, all the accidents of 
these imperial hunts. The favorite Sultana, Gulmïsch, and his 
young confidant, Yousouf, accompanied him on those distant 
excursions of pleasure. He set out ordinarily from his sta- 
tions by moonlight, to the sound of trumpets and of tim- 
brels, said a prayer in the mosques of the villages, adminis- 
tered justice, like Saint-Louis, beneath the oaks of the forests, 
was infle^^ble and often sanguinary towards the blasphemers 
of the faith, and punished capitally doubt as a crime. 

Abdi cites two victims of his fanaticism martyrized as 
atiieists ; one, for having equalized Christ with the Prophet; 
the other, for professing the cosmopolitan creed of the 
Druses. He relates, the same day, the murder of a palfrey 
groom who maltreated causelessly a horse, and the fortuitous 
encounter, by the Sultan, of a cow delivered of a calf in 
a meadow, and his dialogue with the Christian peasant, 
owner of Ûie cow, whom he tried to convert to Islamism. 

The Sultan, jealous of commemorating these puerilities, 
used to come often to recount them familiarly to the histo- 
rian, Abdi, when he was sick, and used to ask to see the 
Annals, of which some pages are written in his own hand. 
Eyery thing in these pa^es indicates in him one of those 
cipher kings of the first dynastic race of France, regarding 
as subaltern every other function than that of giving their 
name to the reign, and leaving government and war, as ig- 

mSTOBY or TUBKET. 363 

noble trad^, to the majors of the palace. Prayer, hunting 
and lounging, were with him the only royal works, 


Kiuperli, free now to turn all his attention to the con- 
quest of Crete, brought the Sultan back to Constantinople, 
where the Sultana Validé Tarkhan complimented his return 
by presents of the value of one million five hundred thousand 
piasters. Mahomet lY. received there at the same time 
presents from the court of Austria, birought to Constantinople 
by the ambassador, Count Walter de Leslie. These presents 
attest the industry and the arts of Austria at that epoch. 
Mirrors of the height of a man, framed with chased silver 
and turning on a pivot of the same metal, sculptured ewers 
of silver and of gold, borne upon tripods of fluted colonettes ; 
gilded and covered basins that threw out jets of perfumed 
water ; candelabras of numerous branches ; a table service in 
vermilion; gridirons of silver; fowling-pieces; poniards; 
telescopes ; carpets of the Spanish Netherlands embroidered 
in gold ; watches, clocks, an artificial ^otto with a dial-plate 
of wliich a waterfall set going the hands and struck the 
hours ; and similar presents, but of female use, for the Sul« 
tanas, mother and favorite : such were the magnificences with 
which Leopold covered his humiliation and purchased peace. 

The cortege of German, Italian and English nobility, which 
accompanied the ambassador, was worthy of the presents. 
It counted the Duke of Norfolk, Lord Arundel, the princes 
of Lichtenstein, Count Trautmannsdorf, the Florentine 
Pecori, the Milanese Casanova, the Frenchman Chateauvieux. 
One hundred and fifty nobles of all the nations of Europe, 
except the subjects of Eome and of Venice, bedecked with 
their presence the embassy of Leopold. 

The ambassador of France, M de la Haye, on his return 
to Constantinople, incurred the reproaches and the insults of 
the ^and vizier for the indirect and volunteer succors which 
the King of France allowed, in Crete and in Hungary, to 
join the enemies of the Porte : " You French," said Kiuperli 
to him, " you proclaim yourselves our best friends, and we 
meet you every where amongst our enemies." 

This tart and uprightly reproach was well founded at this 
moment. . It would have been also legitimate at the epoch 
when Napoleon debarked in Egypt to expel therefrom the 


Ottomans, our nmtaral allies. It would haye been so at 
Nayarino, when our cannons, confonnded witii those of Russia 
and of England, annihilated sottishlj the fleet of Mahmond. 
It would haye been so, in fine, in recent times when we were 
imposing upon Turkey concerning the holy places of Jeru- 
salem, partialities toward Catholic monks and expropriations 
towards eight millions, of her Greek subjects which she could 
not consent to without exposing herself, on the part of Russia, 
to the war, glorious but onerous, which we are witnesses of 
to-day (AprU, 1866). 


M. de la Haye, a proud and irritable man, rose and threw 
oontemptuously the capitulations, which he held in his hand, 
upon the carpet. Kiuperli got excited and addressed him 
by the name, at that time iniralting, of Jew. His first cham- 
berlain struck him with the stool; the ambassador 'drew his 
sword ; the chiaoux rushed upon him to disarm him ; the 
tumult threatened to become bloody. The grand yiiier re- 
cognized, three days after, his wrong, conyoked the French 
minister, made him reparations, and begged him to suppress 
in silence, between his court and the Porte, a mutual yiolence 
of words and gesture of which the publication might cost 
the Porte and France their old friendship. 

This old friendship, it is true, was ceaselessly compromised 
on the part of France, by the coyert hostilities which ill-re- 
sponded to the official declarations of alliance or of neutrality. 
This double-dealing of France was not premeditated du- 
plicity, but perpetual yiolence done by religion to policy. 
We are going to find, in fact, the French nobility against the 
Turks in Crete, as we haye just obseryed them to be in 
Hungary. There were two peoples in France, and two men 
in Louis XIY. If policy enjoined the king and the people 
to always perseyere in tne sole alliance which could assist 
them in counterbalancing the house of Austria, religion, the 
popular prejudices dating from the crusades, the incitations 
of Rome, and the last throbbings of the chiyalrous spirit, 
reproached their honor and their conscience for not uniting 
with the Christian leagues against the followers of the 
prophet, reputed barbarous. 

It is this double sentiment that set incessantly a seeming 
conflict between the words and the acts of France, in relation 


to the Ottomans. It was notperfidy in the court of France, 
it was weakness.* Louis XI V. himself, then in all the vigor 
of his youth and of his reign, did not escape it ; thus while 
he was assuring Kiuperli of his well-disposed neutrality in 
the war which the Porte sustained against Austria in Hun- 
gary and against Venice in Crete, he was forced, by conde- 
scension to the chivalrous spirit of his nobility, to authorize, 
at least by silence, volunteer bodies of Frenchmen to join a 
flag disavowed by France on the banks of the Danube and in 
the sea of Candia. Despite himself, the knight prevailed 
over the statesman, and the Christian over the king. 

This is the explanation of all French diplomacy in the 
East at that epoch, and it is still at this day the sole ex- 
planation which history can give of the double diplomacy 
of the present government of France— endangering Turkey 
itself in 1852 by the untimely exigence of the holy 
places, and lending its arms and its blood in 1864 to consoli- 
date it : this diplomacy has compromised the State. Preju- 
dice struggles still against reason. The Turks are our 
friends, and the Mussulmans are the old antipathies of our 
memories, t 

* This is perfectly just as a secondary explanation, an explanation of 
personal motives and of practical politics. But of the high historic reason 
of the old alliance between France and Tnrkej, as also of the ancient 
rivalry between Austria and France, the author evidentiy has no notion, 
which is indeed the common case. — TranslcUor, 

t This eternal incident of the "Holy places" seems nndaly dwelt 
upon by the antiior, as if it were the only flaw which he can pick in the 
diplomacy of a triumphant rival, both political and personal. Besides, 
he mistakes, I venture to say, the motive. He wrongs his countrymen 
in chargiDg them with religious hatreds at this day. The measure cen« 
sured had no such origin, either popular or governmental ; it was merely 
and even manifestly a political manœuvre to deprive the priests and the 
Legitimists of their known war-cry of irreligion against a government 
then in the infancy of its establishment Accordingly, no sooner was the 
claim observed to operate the least exterior inconvenience than the French 
government retracted it — a thing which governments and individuals 
are much more apt to do with measures based on tentative tactics than 
on religious prejudices. But in this quality of tactics the diplomacy was 
quite excusable against an enemy so treacherous, and in a government 
80 young. Moreover, in the third place, there are deeper reasons than 
the author dreams of for tiie predominance which France instinctively 
aspires to in the Holy places ; but the point belongs to the philosophy of 
history just alluded to. — Translator, 



Kiuperli tolerated, as finished statesman, a contradiction 
of which the French ambassador gave him confidentially the 
kej. He took good care not to constrain to an open rap- 
ture a power of which he had an interest in managing the 
ambignous part, and of which he comprehended the twofold 
nature. The naval and the land forces which he was thence- 
forth able to turn wholly aganist the Venetians in Crete, left 
him easy on the score of the small number of volunteers, 
adventurers of religion and of glory, which Louis XIV. 
allowed to depart from his ports. This conquest of Candia 
was to Kiuperli not only a necessity and a glory of Islamism, 
it was also an adroit adulation to the young and beautiful 
Sultana G-iilmisch, who was daily becoming more completely 
a sovereign over the affectionate heart of Mahomet IV. 

This favorite, Cretan by family and bom at Eetimo, 
flattered herself after the conquest of her country by her 
husband to be crowned queen of Crete, to possess as " slipper- 
money " the rich revenues of this insular empire become the 
apanage of a slave bom on its soil, and to govern at her will, 
with the gentleness of a woman's yoke, those compatriots and 
those Christians of whom she felt herself still the daughter 
and the sister. 

Giilmisch, intoxicated with these prospects with which 
Kiuperli dazzled her in order to assure himself of her co- 
operation, undertook in her turn to defend Kiuperli in the 
mind of the Sultan, her husband, against the subaltern 
rivalries of two young favorites, Yousouf and Mustapha, 
who gave him severe umbrage. This league between a great 
man and an adored woman to master a feeble prince, per- 
mitted Kiuperli to concentrate at Adrianople treasures and 
armaments equal to all that Soliman the Great had ever accu- 
mulated in resources for his vastest expeditions. Kiuperli, 
sure of Giilmisch, did not hesitate to take himself the com- 
mand of a war which would remove him long, perhaps, from 
the Sultan. 

The army, accompanied by the Sultan as far as the sea, 
was passed in review by Mahomet before its embarkation ; 
he then returned to Adrianople by a march prolonged byhis 
hunts which lasted some twenty-two days. He occupied his 
leisure in the construction of a new seraglio, which cost 


twelve hundred thousand gold ducats, and which the histoman 
Abdi describes in terms as magnificent aa its architecinre. 


A religious agitation fomented by a Jewish impostor of 
Smyrna, named Sabathaï, who represented himself as a new 
Messiah and a new prophet, and of whom the Jews and Mus- 
sulmans adopted the sect, excited for a moment the empire; 
Kiuperli had him shut up before his departure in the Seven 
Towers. His partisans saw in that captivity only the verifica- 
tion of one of his prophecies which announced this persecu- 
tion. Sabathai was to come forth victorious, mounted on a 
lion, of which he would direct the course with a bridle formed 
of seven-headed serpents. 

Another impostor, a Pole, and inventor of some mystic 
reveries by which he rivalled Sabathaï in the popular cre- 
dulity, denounced the latter to the caimakam Moustapha as 
exciting the people to revolt. The Sultan had him brought 
to Adrianople and questioned him. Credulous as well as 
orthodox, Mahomet IV. wished, however, to make trial of 
the supernatural power of Sabathaï ; he had him tied naked 
to a post to serve as a target for the darts of his archers, to see 
if he was not invulnerable. The Jewish impostor eluded the 
experiment and death by confessing his impostures and ab- 
juring his divinity. He embraced Islamism, and became, 
from Messiah, the official pawnbroker of the seraglio. His 
shame annihilated his sect. 


The army embarked the 14th May, 1666. After having 
traversed the sea of Marmora it occupied four months in 
traversing slowly Anatolia, and re-embarked at Isdin, in 
front of Rhodes, for Crete. It landed the 16th November 
of the same year, on the beach of Cydonia. 

The Egyptian fleet of twenty-six sail which was bringing 
the contingent from Cairo to Kiuperli, intercepted by the 
Venetian squadron, was annihilated before the eyes of the 

A second fleet from Constantinople, with six thousand 
Janissaries, brought in spring the army of the ^and vizier 
up to eighty thousand oonU)atant8. The 20£ Mi^, he 

368 mSTOBY OF tubkbt. 

opened intrenchments before the walls of Candia, Uns lart 
bulwark of the Venetians in Crete and of the Christians in 
the East Morosini, the first warrior of Venice, recompensed 
for his exploits by gratitude and by envy, had been recalled 
from oblivion by the nobles of that oligarchy to save a 
second time his country, appointed generalissimo of the 
army and of the fleet, he debarked with two thousand men 
in the city. Nine thousand others, already seasoned by their 
long struggle against Housseïn, defended, behind impreg- 
nable bastions, this last shoal of Ottoman power for so many 
years. Four hundred pieces of cannon crowned the ramparts, 
served by the first artillerymen of Christendom ; seven bas- 
tions nearly solid, trenches like abysses excavated with 
the chisel from the living rock ; in fine, subterraneous and 
unknown mines bored underneath the soil and ready to in- 
gulf the besiegers up to their trenches, rendered Candia the 
terror of the Turks. 

This city had already cost them two fleets and three 
armies. Morosini, in order to be present at the point of dan- 

fer, lodged under one of the casemated bastions of the place, 
t was thence that he inspected unceasingly the trenches, 
that he cleared his ditches of fascines with a machine of his 
invention, that he directed the sallies, and received, like the 
Turks themselves, the severed heads of enemies which 
his soldiers brought to his feet before throwing them into 
the sea. 

Six hundred and eighteen explosions of mines and thirty- 
two assaults covered the city with smoke, the sea with blood, 
and the land with bodies, from the 22d May to the 18th 
November. Egypt and Syria heard from their shores, 
through the sea winds, the detonations of the city and the 
camp, like those of a perpetual volcano. Four hundred 
Christian officers, three thousand Venetians in the city, eight 
thousand Ottomans, killed during the first months of the 
siege, attested the animosity of the combatants. 

One of the bastions, levelled by the monstrous guns of 
Kiuperli, appeared to open at last the enclosure to the Janis- 
saries. Morosini forestalled them by a sally of the whole 
garrison, which reconquered the trenches from the Turks. 
These succeeded in recovering them ; but a mine charged 
with two hundred kegs of powder, which the besieged had 
covered over with earth as they receded, ingulfed seven 
thousand of the Turks. Kiuperli sent off by a single con- 


Toy four thonsand of these mutilated soldiers into Asia. The 
plague, fomented by the exhalations of so many corpses, 
decimated his camp ; the storms kept off his reinforcements 
from the coast; the winter rains inundated his works. 
Morosini, as enterprising on sea as he was invincible on his 
walls, put out with a squadron of twenty vessels, and grap* 
pling with the second Egyptian fleet laden with troops, 
burned or sunk it before the eyes of the grand vizier. 


Eighteen months were consumed without other result 
than thousands of corpses. The Duke of Savoy, who had 
hired some regiments to the Venetians, withdrew them at 
the instigation of Kiuperli, in the spring of 1668. The 
Marquis de Ville, who commanded them, obeyed with sorrow 
his prince in vain chidden by the Pope. The Marquis de 
Saint- Andre*Montbrun, general of the volunteers of France 
in Crete, succeeded him in the command of the place. The 
Venetians wished by this deference to court the pride of 
Louis XIV., and to constrain him to succor his nobility 
dying for the faith. 

The king permitted the Duke de la Feuillade, as brave 
on the field of battle as servile and adulatory in courts, to 
enroll five hundred French officers of the armies of Condé 
and of Turenne, and four thousand veterans for Candia. 
A selection of French youths, the Fénelons, the Savignés, 
sons of the women who immortalized this name, the V ille- 
mors, the Chateau-Thiérys, the Saint-Pauls, had set out 
with Beaufort ; they had been joined by five hundred Italian 
Knights. These reinforcements filled up the void which 
the Turkish cannon had made in the ranks of the Venetians; 
but these youth, impatient to do miracles, adapted themselves 
ill to the methodic and defensive war, which the experience 
of Morosini imposed upon the garrison before an army six 
times superior in number and in cavalry outside the wafls. 

The 16th December, the six thousand French, against 
orders, rushed with the impetuosity of their race upon the 
Janissaries, broke their ranks, pursued them, conquered a 
moment their camp, and, after having sabred two thousand 
of them, defied the entire army of KiuperlL La Feuillade 
and his principal officers affected such contempt for the 
Turks, that they disdained to draw the sword upon this 
Vol. in.— 16* 

870 H19T0BT or TtTEKlT. 

horde, and galloped like Miurat upon the Gossaeks, whip ifi 
hand, upon the ^Mthis. Their ohatlenges, their Taunting «mL 
their temeritj cost them some thonsands of hrayes in their 
return to the eamp. 

Kinperli, charing them at the head of the Topschis and 
the Janissaries, killed four thousand of them between the 
oamp and the eitj* Yillemor, Tayannes and forty friends 
of La Feuillade were slain ; Fénelon saw his son fall at his 
side without being able to rescue his body from the Janis- 
saries ; d'Aubusson, SéFiçné, Montmorin, Créquj, La Feu* 
illade, returned deoimated, covered with their own blood, 
and almost alone, through the same sate which thej had 
forced in the morning to make the Venetians ashamed of 
their prudence» They got discouraged by a war of discipline 
and constancy in opposition to their adyenturous genius; 
they murmured against the timidity of Morosini, who mur- 
mured in his turn at their bravado. They re^mbarked, 
bringing off with them from their campaign but a vain glory» 
the esteem of the Turks and the just answer of the Yenetians. 


La Feuillade, cured of his wounds, did not despair how- 
ever of Candia; he aided the envoys of Venice at Paris and 
the legate of the Pope, to obtain from the king an assistance 
of twenty regiments. The Duke de Beaufort, that hero and 
tribune of the Fronde under Maiarin, who was fallen from 
his popularity, but not from his courage, sought in war the 
adventures which he had sought for in seditions. He em- 
barked a short time after La Feuillade for Candia. He took 
with him, the 19th June, 1669, a squadron of fourteen ves- 
sels, laden with troops, under his orders and under those of 
the Duke de Navailles. The musketeers of the guard of 
Louis XIY. and five hundred French volunteers debarked 
under the batteries of the Turks. 

The city was now but a heap of rubbish, amid which 
encamped a few thousand defenders. These noblemen, 
scarcely landed, constrained Mororâni to let them brave the 
fire of the Ottomans in open field ; they blushed at covering 
their intrepidity with ditches, bastions and walls. The 
Duke de Navailles, the Duke de Beaufort, Castellane, Ohoi- 
seul, Dampierre, Colbert, their chiefs, remained deaf to the 
representations of the Venetian genend. This baleful sortie, 

marOBY OF TURKBT. 371 

in whi<$h the French were promptly thrown back by the 
Turks, brought on their tracks the victorious enemy up to 
the gates of the city. Five hundred of them perished be- 
tween thç ramparts and the camp of Kiuperli. The heads 
out from a Count de Rauzan, a Lesdiguières, a Fabert, a Mar- 
quis d'Uxelles, a Castellane and of sixty musketeers, were 
thrown before the tent of the grand vizier. 

The Duke de Beaufort reappeared no more. " He is yel- 
low-haired and tall," wrote Morosini, to obtain him back liv- 
ing or dead from the enemy. " If he be living, we will give 
you for his ransom whatever you ask ; if he is dead, we will 
pay you for his body its weight in gold." 

He was sought in vain among the dead or among the 
prisoners ; whether it was that he had been ingulfed in ilie 
crater of some mine, or that, having been ashamed to re-en- 
ter the city after a flight which humiliated his pride, he had 
pushed his horse into the inaccessible solitudes of the island, 
nothing more was ever heard of this brilliant hero of our 
civil wars. The rumor ran for a long time that he was 
turned hermit in the forests of Crete, and that he had ended, 
in the desert and in penitence, a life predestined by its vicis- 
situdes to the adventures of war, of revolutions, of love and 
of religion. 


The Duke de Navailles, by an inexplicable versatility of 
conduct, if it was not by a secret order of Louis XIV., aban- 
doned the city to its dangers after having compromised it by 
his rashness. The French re-embarked two months after 
their landing. This defection, ruinous to the Venetians as 
to their own honor, involved that of the Italian auxiliaries, 
of the Knights of Malta and of the Germans of the garri- 
son. Morosini implored them in vain to leave him three 
thousand until winter ; nothing could retain these faithless 
allies. The hero of Venice remained alone with a handful 
of braves amid the ruins of the fortifications, in ûwe of two 
hundred iliousand Ottomans 

Kiuperli offered him, through policy as much as admira- 
tion, a capitulation worthy of his character. It was signed 
upon the ruins of the bastion of Morosini, and, the 26th 
September, the cross gave place to the crescent upon the half- 
crumbled domes of Candia. The blockade or the siege of 


this capital of Crete had lasted for twenty-fire years, and 
cost three hundred thousand men to the yictor». Nerer 
would ambition alone have given such perseverance to an 
enemy, such pertinacitv to defenders; but -Oandia^was the 
battle-field of two religions, and religions have antipathies 
as long as centuries. 

Kiuperli treated Morosini as an enemy worthy of him : 
he accorded him for himself, hb soldiers, and the inhabitants 
the liberty and the time to evacuate the island. There 
remained in the city but two Greek priests, one woman and 
three Jews. Kiuperli received from their hands on the 
breach of the bastion Saint- Andrew, called now the basticm 
of the Conquest, the eighty-three keys of the city on a silver 
plate. Morosini embarked for Venice, where he found anew 
but calumniators who accused him of having sold Crete, a 
political law-suit and a prison. The obstinate ingratitude of 
his country did not tire the patriotism of this great man, 
whom the Turks were soon to meet again in the Morea as 
the Hannibal of the Ottomans. 


The evening of the capitulation, Kiuperli wrote for the 
first time to the Sultan, to whom he had sworn to send no 
other than a letter of victory. The following day, he ful- 
filled with a tauching filial piety a duty more dear to his 
heart : he went to deposit his victiMry at the feet of his 
mother, in the village of Emadia adjacent to the camp. 
This woman, superior in intellect, in virtue and in courage, 
had wished to follow her son in his expedition, to comfort 
him in his reverses or to rejoice in his triumphs. The grand 
vizier used to listen with respect to her counsels, and glori- 
fied himself in owing to his mother his most wise and gener- 
ous inspirations* He placed with tears the keys of the city 
at her feet, and embraced her as the venerated source of his 
existence and of his glory. 

More ea^r to consolidate the conquest of Candia for the 
Ottomans than to parade its pride to Constantinople, Kiu- 
perli sojourned still for nine months in Crete, to re-edify the 
fortifications of the cities and to organize the administration 
of the provinces. The numerous Greek population, re- 
spected by him in its property^ and in its usages, continued 


to make of the plains of Crete the garden of the Méditer^ 
ranean and the appendage of Egypt. 


Nothing had troubled gravely either the empire or the 
oonrt, governed from afar by the genius of Kiuperli, during 
the years of his sojourn at the camp before Candia. The 
vessel that brought him baok to Europe cast anchor at the 
island of Cos ; the grand vizier reposed there for some days 
with his mother amid the beautiful landscapes of the isle, on 
the brink of fountains shaded with orange-trees, and between 
the remembrances of his long campaign and the preoccupa- 
tion of the affairs which were awaiting him at Adrianople. 
Passion for nature, for contemplation and leisure, is the ori- 
ginal and the indelible character of the Ottoman. It is 
found in his most active heroes as in his most meditative sages. 

Kiuperli consumed those days, too limited, of summer, 
in philosophical conversations with the poets and historians 
of his retinue, and with the books whose assiduous reading 
furnished nutriment to his soul. He landed at length at 
Bodosto, and met Mahomet at Timourtasch, whither this 
prince was come, in hunting along the way, to receive his 
viiier. Mahomet IV. was not jealous of a glory which ap- 
peared to be his own. He placed anew the enlarged empire 
m the hands of his minister. His fanaticism only constrained 
Kiuperli to be severer than he would have wished towards 
the violators of the Koran, and especially the drinkers of 
Greek wine. The vizier, without scruples upon this religious 
observance, had learned, in his campaigns of Crete and of 
Hungary, to relish, with temperance, this drink which stimu- 
lates the imagination of poets and the courage of warriors. 
" During his sojourn of fifteen days under the orange-trees 
of the island of Cos, on the brink of its fountains, and 
crystal waters, where he would see but his intimate acquaint- 
ances," says the Turkish historian of his life, "Kiuperli, 
forgetting State affairs, had often set to cool the mellow 
wine of Methymne in the spring of Homer, which mumured 
by him." 

Louis XIY. sent his ambassador, M. de Nointel, to Con- 

374 HI8T0BT or TTTBKXT. 

Btantinople, with a acpiadroii of fire Teasels under the com- 
mand of M. d'Apremont The caïmakam haying lefased the 
salute of the batteries of the seraglio, through resentment 
of the ambiguous conduct of France during the wars of 
Crete and of Hungurj, the squadron passed befoie the se- 
raglio without saluting the palace of the Sultan. The Sul- 
tana Validé attended from the balcoi^ of the kiosk '< of the 
Sea'' at the entry of the squadron. Offended at the silence 
of the French guns, the Turks murmured on the shore. A 
shot, fired from a Turkish yessel, wbunded a sailor of the 
squadron; a naval combat was going to ensue in the harbor. 
The Sultana, an admirer of the French, interposed ; she 
sent to request d'Apremont to give her some salutes the fol- 
lowing day when she would cross the Bosphorus to her 
palace of Scutari. The French accorded to a woman, mother 
of a sovereign, what they had refused to the representative 
of the empire. 

M. de Nointel, after this reconciliation, made his solemn 
entry into Constantinople. Called from thence to Adriano- 
ple, he was received coldly by Kiuperli and by the Sultan. 
Having spoken in his conversation with the grand vizier of 
the arms of Louis XIV., at that time still young : " Your pa- 
disohah is the padischah of a great people," replied Eauperli ; 
" but his sword is yet new." However, after long negotia- 
tions, M. de Nointel obtained the signature of new capitula- 
tions in sixty-one articles, favorable to French commerce and 
the French right of protectorate over the holy places and the 
liberty of pilgrimage. 

M. de Nointel availed himself of his sojourn in Turkey 
and of his privileges of ambassador to visit one of the first 
ruins and sites of the Archipelago and of Greece. Attended 
by five hundred persons, among whom were drawers, painters 
and erudites, he explored the master- works of nature and 
the vestiges of* Greek and Koman antiquity, on a scene to- 
day denuded of the antique world. He discovered the mar- 
vellous ffrotto of Antiparos, wherein chandeliers of resplen- 
dent stalactites reflected the luslare of thousands of wax- 
lights and of lamps during the birth night of Christ, c^ 
which he celebrated the commemoration in this natural 


The Austrian Hungarians sent, at the same period, one 


of their magnates, Ooimt Zrinj, to Adrianople, to offer the 
Porte an annual tribute of sixty thousand ducats, if Kiu* 
perli would rescue them, in the expression of the envoy, 
from the tyranny of the Germans and the Jesuits, who were 
doing violence to their liberty and their conscience. Kiu- 
perli, attentive to other sides of the empire, eluded, without 
rejecting them, these offers of the nobles of Lower Hungary. 

The Cossacks of the Don, a race perpetually floating 
between the Russians, the Tartars, the Poles and the Turks, 
were divided into two factions, of which the one had ap- 
pointed for hetman, Brukoiki, é»voted to the Russians ; the 
other, Doroeaenko, hetman of the Cossacks of '^ the Reed." 
Dorosienko, attacked, against the wishes of the Porte, by the 
Poles, at that moment allies of the Russians, claimed pro- 
tection from the Porte, and received investiture and the 
horse-tails, sign of his naturaliiation among the proteges 
of the Ottomans. The alliance of the Cossacks, who occu- 
pied a vast territory between the Dnieper and the Dniester, 
gave a solid frontier to the Turks against inconstant Poland 
and against hostile Russia. 

Kiuperli marched with one hundred and fifty thousand 
men against the Poles, who had just made an incursion upon 
the lands of the Cossacks. The Sultan, weary this time of 
an idleness which occasioned hb receiving the humiliating 
surname of Avacyi (the hunstman), followed the army. This 
army crossed the Danube, and advanced towards the Polish 
fortress of Kaminiec, built upon a crag surrounded by the 
Smotrix, which laves its walls. Its rapid fall brought with it 
that of 1^ Podolia. Poland, vanquished and humUiated, im- 
plored, through John Sobieski, her future hero, the adjourn- 
ment of the tribute of three hundred thousand ducats with 
which they had just purchased the peace. 

Sobieski, the only man of his nation who did not despair 
of his country, was appomted commander-in-chief of the 
wrecks of the vanquished army. He awaited at Chociim 
either a more honorable peace or a desperate battle with the 
Turks. The Walkchians and the Moldavians of the army 
of Kiuperli passed over in the midst of the battle to So- 
bieski The Dniester ingulfed, by the rupture of a bridge 
of boats, some thousands of Turks ; the rest, cut off by me 
river from the centre of the army, perished by the cannon 
of Choczim and by the sabre of the Poles. Sobieski con- 
quered in this blood the esteem, the enthusiasm and the 

376 HI0TOBT or TtJBKlT. 

tlirone of his conntrj. His ffenios shone forth suddenly in 
the retrieyed fortune of the Sarmatians. A man had resos* 
citated a people. 

Peace was negotiated upon a most equitable basis. The 
Sultan, the yisier and the army returned to discuss it in 


The fetes of. the seraglio on the occasion of the circum* 
oision of his son efiaced from the memory of Mahomet IV. 
the reverse of Chocsim. 

The three Sultanas, Tarkhan, Giilmisch and a new ono, 
called the little favorite, to which history has given no other 
name, attended, according to usage, at this magnificent cere- 
mony, at once the baptism and the toga prmtexta of the 
Mussulman princes. They shed all three, says Abdi, abun- 
dance of tears at the cries of pain of young Mustapha, son 
of the *' rosy-lipped " Gulmisch ; but these feminine tears 
did not flow, says he again, from the same source, nor had 
they the same û^nification. Gnlmisch wept with joy to see 
her first-bom, only son of the Sultan, consecrated by so au- 
gust a ceremony to the throne where she would reign with 
him. The little favorite wept with grief and with jealousy , 
at her own sterility, which, despite the love of Mahomet 
IV., refused to yield her in a son the pledge of a perpetuity 
of favor. In fine, the Sultana Validé wept with anguish at 
the sinister future of her other son, Souleïman, of whom the 
life, useless and dangerous henceforth to Mahomet, his 
brother, might be sacnfioed at any moment to the passion of 
Ihe Sultan for the son of Gulmisch. 

The Sultan, in fact, fearing to leare after him, in Souleï- 
man, a c<Hnpetitor to his son Mustapha, premeditated^ a long 
' time back a crime which was presented him by law, by tradi- 
tion and example as a prudence and almost as a virtue of 
public policy. It was not scruples, but the supplications 
and the tears of the Sultana Validé, and the innocent graces 
of the boy, that made him hesitate to accomplish it. Sev- 
eral times he had issued and revoked the fatal order. Some 
weeks before the circumcision of Mustapha, troubled even in 
his dreams by the obsession of this thought of murder, he 
woke up with a bound from his couch, and entered poniard 
in hand the chamber of the Sultana Validé, to slay himself 


in his sleep the in&nt towards whom he reproached himself 
with entertaining pity ; but Souleïman slept, by a maternal 
presentiment of his perils, in the bed-chamber and at the 
bedside of the Validé. 

Awakened by. the footsteps of Mahomet upon the carpet 
and seized with affright at the sight of the dagger, she leaped 
from the bed and covered Souleïman with her body. The 
Sultan, moved by the sobs of his mother, alarmed by her 
maledictions, let fall the weapon from his hand, and returned 
to his apartments humiliated at his weakness. 

Kiuperli dissuaded him with horror from a crime which 
would dishonor humanity to confirm the throne. His con- 
stant and effectual opposition to those coups d'etats by 
political assassination, conciliated him the gratitude and the 
support of the Sultana Validé. The little favorite, a recent 
present of the Validé to her son, and devoted through rivalry 
to her protectress, protected the life of Souleïman, and adopted 
him in her heart in default of a son. In fine, Gulmisch, 
notwithstanding her affection for her son Mustapha, did not 
solicit a crime which would for ever have incurred the hatred 
and the vengeance of her husband's mother. Grateful to 
Kiuperli, who had conquered her the kingdom of Crete, she 
continued to serve him with her influence almost absolute in 
the harem : so that these three women, rivals in certain re- 
spects to each other, all concurred by a particular interest 
in protecting Souleïman, and in consolidating the fortune of 
Kiuperli, which was in reality that of their ambition and of 
the empire. 


All was now prospering with the empire. Sobieski, its 
sole enemy, after a new and glorious campaign at Zurawno 
against Ibrahim-Pasha and the Tartars, where he had kept 
in check two hundred thousand men with fifteen thousand 
Sarmatians backed against the Dniester, had just concluded 
a peace, modest but urgent to his nation, between the two 
camps. Poland, despite her two victories, lost by this peace 
Podolia and the Ukraine; but she had obtained a hero. 
Kiuperli could have annihilated him with his two hundred 
thousand soldiers, Turks, Tartars and Cossacks then united 
against the Poles. But he was too much a statesman to 
abuse his strength agaimst that people from which Turkey had 


DOthiDg to fear, and whioh might, on the contrary, as at pre- 
oeding periods, become its yangnard against the Rnssians, 
the Hungarians or the (}erman& 

The Sarmatians, according to Kinperli, were the braTCst 
cavalry of Europe ; but their character was as fickle as the 
sand of their steppes. Poland was alternately a camp and a 
faction ; it was never an organised government, redoubtable 
to its neighbors : it was then to be repressed, never to be 
destroyed. He admired it without fearing it At bottom 
those ideas were just, but the time was not remote when, 
under the hand of Sobieski, this equestrian &ction, become an 
invincible army, was going to avenge the Danube and to 
save Germany. 

The premature death of Kiuperli hastened this hour. 
He succumbed gradually, like Mr Pitt, beneath the weight 
of an empire of which he was alone the soul and the hand, 
and which solicited unceasingly his intellect and his arm 
from the confines of Ethiopia, from the Tigris, from the Eu- 
phrates, from the Don, from the Adriatic to, the frontiers of 
Austria. His moral courage led him to overlook the ex- 
haustion of his physical strength. In bringing back the 
Sultan from Constantinople to Adrianople, he expired at two 
stations from the capital, in a hut of the village of Karabe- 
ber, after an illness of twenty days. 

Never had empire lost so much in a single man. His 
virtue was such that no one had to rejoice at his death, and 
hb life was so identified with the grandeur of his nation and 
the empire that it shared his dissolution. To judge this 
p'eat man, son of a great man, there is no need of panegyric ; 
it is enough to remember at what degree of anarchy and 
abasement the two Kiuperlis had taken up the throne and 
the people, and to see to what degree of security and of 

gandeur the father and the son had re-elevated the monarchy, 
appy the men of whom the merits need no words, and 
whose glory is inscribed in the frontiers and the institutions 
of their country I But woe to the peoples who place their 
destiny upon the head of a single statesman, even were he 
as great, as virtuous and as fortunate as Kiuperli, and who 
live or die in a single man ! they may have glorious reigns, 
they have not long destinies. Time belongs to individuality 
eternity to nations.* 

* This paraphrase of Mirabeau seems scarce a logical conclosioa — 
TramsUUor. * 



The two great ministers whom destiny had given in the 
same family to Mahomet IV., had so relieved the mind of 
this prince from the cares of the throne, that, for him to 
reign was confined to resuming for a moment the empire from 
the hands of one grand vizier to deposit it forthwith into the 
hands of another. The habit also of seeing the government 
for so many years back pass successively in the family of the 
Kiuperlis, interdicted, so to say, all ambition of the vizier- 
ship, even to the favorites of the Sultan, and lefb no doubt 
witn the Ottomans that the seals of the empire would pass 
like an heirloom to Mustapha-Beg, the young brother of the 
late minister. 

Mustapha-Beg believed this himself : it* had been happy 
for the empire if the Sultan had respected in him the 
designation, so to say, dynastic to the government. Mus- 
tapha-Beg, in following closely the traditions of his father 
and of his brother, would have spared the monarchy the 
calamities and the shame which were going to flow from a 
change of policy. But the man who was to draw and to 
shatter the Ottoman empire upon the shoal of its power was 
bom: it was Kara-Mustapha, brother-in-law of the great 
Kiuperli, and caïmakam of Constantinople. 


Kara-Mustapha was an Asiatic of the environs of Meni- 
fbun ; his father, chieftain of a powerful warrior tribe of 
Mesopotamia, had been slain in fighting for the Turks 
acainst the Persians at the siege of Bagdad. The elder 
Ejuperliy who commanded the Ottoman army in Mesopota* 


vùhj had adopted the orphan child through gratitude toward 
the father. He had hroaght him up in his house with his 
own sons ; he had him promoted from grade to grade, to the 
rank of equerry to the Sultan, of general, of capitan-pasha, 
and in fine, of caïmakam of Constantinople — a sort of vice- 
vizier who governed the capital in the absence of the principal. 
To better incorporate him in his family, he had given him 
his daughter in marriage. Kara-Mustapha then had con- 
tracted in this family the combined kinships of adoption, of 
consanguinity and of omnipotence ; but he had contracted 
neither its genius nor its virtues. His character was that 
of an Asiatic satrap, haughty, insatiable and ferocious. 
Spoiled from his infancy by a complaisant fortune, he had 
received by accident all the dignities of the empire, without 
having conquered any of them by his own merits ; the habit 
of commandiug was his sole capacity for command. Incalcu- 
lable treasures, avidities still more insatiable, an oriental 
luxury outstripping the decencies of a subject, a harem of 
five hundred women devoted to pleasure or to ostentation, 
slaves and horses without number, domains without limits, 
equalized him with the kings of Asia. 

This pride and this pomp were one of the motives that 
induced the Sultan to invest him with the office of grand 
vizier. This prince, still trembling at the remembrance of 
the factions which in his childhood had carried sedition to 
the throne itself, wished to set an immense distance between 
his grand vizier and his other servants. The pride of Kara- 
Mustapha pleased him, for if pride sometimes provokes, it 
more often overawes. To crush the factions in their reviving 
germ was the sole government of Mahomet lY. 


The first acts of Kara-Mustapha showed his political in- 
capacity. Instead of following the traditions of his adoptive 
father and brother, the two Kiuperlis, a policy which had 
consisted in haviug never to combat but one enemy of the 
empire at a time, and in pacifying some, while he was strug- 
gling against the others, Kara-Mustapha seemed to take a 
pleasure in provoking a coalition of all the enemies of the 
empire against the Ottomans. He insulted gratuitously, in 
open divan,' the ambassador of Louis XIV., M. de Npintel, 
upon a silly question of etiquette, and abandoned him to the 


brutalities of word and gesture of the cbiaouz, who expelled 
him from the hall. He irritated, by his disdains and his 
exactions, the Polish ambassador, who was entering Constan- 
tinople with a retinue of gentlemen whose horses were shod 
with silver ; the shoes of these horses, attached by a single 
nail ill-riveted, were lost intentionally on the march, as if to 
testify the profusion and the liberality of the Poles. 

" These men must have heads of iron," said the grand 
vizier, " to scatter in this manner their silver. Their 
retinue is not numerous enough to invade Constantiople ; it 
is too much so to come to kiss the threshold of the Sublime 
Porte : I fear it may be soiled by the lips of so many infidel 
Christians. At all events, the Sultan can afford to feed 
three hundred Poles, he who has three thousand of them 
rowing-slaves in his galleys." 

The negotiations of the Poles to obtain from the grand 
vizier restitution of a part of Podolia and the protection of 
the Porte against the Tartars met with delays that chagrined 
those volatile republicans, and threw them reluctantly into 
alliance with the Russians. Kara-Mustapha, instead of re- 
moving the interest of the Russians in his differences with 
the Poles and with the Austrians, had them attacked upon 
the Dniester by Ibrahim, pasha of Bosnia. Defeated by the 
Russians and pursued by the Cossacks as far as Boug, the 
Turks took shelter in Bender. 

Ibrahim, in returning to Constantinople, met the Sultan 
who was marching himself with his grand vizier towards 
Silistria to avenge this reverse. At the sight of his van- 
quished general, the Sultan, in whose eyes all defeat was 
crime, gave orders to the executioner to behead him. Ibra- 
him dismounted from his hoi*se and uncovered without a 
murmur his throat to the headsman. His resignation affected 
Mahomet lY. ; he commuted the penalty into imprisonment 
in the Seven-Towers ; but he ordered him to go there on 
foot, unworthy as he was, said he, to mount a horse after his 
defeat. The chiaoux having represented to the Sultan that 
the infirm old man was incapable of travelling on foot the 
twelve leagues which separated him from the prison, Ma- 
homet revoked again his order, and only exacted that the 
serdar should crawl along a few paces to obey him. He was 
left to pursue afterwards his route on horseback. The wife 
of Ibrahim, who had been nurse to the Sultan, appeared at 
this moment, threw herself at the feet of the Sultan's horse, 


and implored, with her forehead in the dost, the pardon of 
her hoMMUid. Mahomet, incapable of refusing any thin^ to 
her who had given him her milk, changed the prison mto 


The army, slowly assembled at Silistria round the tents 
of the Saltan, menaced the Russians to wrest from them the 
Ukraine. The winter, which nf^ in this severe climate, 
rendered the sojourn of Silistna disagreeable to the Sul- 
tanas, accustomed to the delicious palaces of Constantinople 
and of Adrianople. They beset Mahomet lY. with their c<Hn* 
plaints and their regrets in terms and in songs preserved by 
the Turkish annalists of the campaign. 


The ennuis of these women already wearied the volup- 
tuous Mahomet of a campaign which was scarcely commenced ; 
he turned unceasingly ms eyes towards Adrianople, scarcely 
kept in the camp by the entreaties of Rara-Mustapha. The 
Russian army, of a hundred thousand combatants, awaited 
the Turks beyond the Dniester. The Khan of the Tartars, 
called by the grand visier, joined the Ottomans before Oeh- 
ryn. The city, taken by assault on a nieht of drunkenness 
of the Russians, became a field of fire and of carnage. The 
Russians, rallied in force at some distance, threatened to 
avenge Oehryn in the blood of the Turks. Satisfied with 
this incomplete triumph, Kara- Mustapha retired before them, 
and the Sultan returned to triumph without glory to Con- 

The grand vizier, remaining behind, pressed the princi- 
palities of Moldavia, Wallachia and Transylvania, to the end 
of swelling his personal treasures. He sold to a Cantacu- 
lene the principality of Wallachia for gold. He ordered at 
the same time itn inventory of the imperial treasures at Con- 
stantinople to reintegrate the precious objects embezzled or 
lost by ûiithless guardians. 

" One of the most precious jewels of this treasure of the 
Sultans,'' relates M. de Hammer, after the chroniclers of the 
time, " the large diamond of twenty-four carats and of the 
most beautiful water, which, upon days of parade, adorned 
smce the aigrette of the imperial plume, had been found the 


year before, by a poor man, upon a dunghill, near the gate of 
Egrikapou. As he did not know the value, he exchanged it 
for three spoons. The new acquirer of the stone sold it for 
ten aspers to a goldsmith ; but afterwards suspecting that it 
was worth a good deal more, he demanded an increase of 
price from the purchaser. The dispute was brought to the 
knowledge of the head of the guild of goldsmiths, who took 
the diamond to himself for a purse of gold. The grand 
vizier meant to take it by force from this person, when there 
appeared an imperial edict adjudging it finally to the impe- 
rial treasury. It was the second which was found in this 
way. Without doubt they proceeded both from the treasu- 
ries of the ancient Byzantium. The first, which was still 
more beautiful and of superior weight, had been discovered 
by a child, in the rei^ of Mahomet II., in the Haïwanseraï 
or the Hehdomon. Perhaps it had belonged to the crown 
of the Byzantine emperors, which, the twenty-second year 
of the reign of Justinian, had been lost, by the fault of the 
masters of the wardrobe, on the place of the Hebdomon, 
during a triumphal march." 

The thought of immolating his two young brothers, sons 
oif Ibrahim, was besetting more urgently Mahomet IV. in pro- 
portion as these princes were advancing in years. This obses- 
sion was by so much the more atrocious that this prince, who 
was not sanguinary by nature, served them as tutor and fa- 
ther, and that they were sons as well as brothers of whom 
an odious policy demanded the murder. Kara-Mustapha not 
daring to oppose directly a resolution which horrified him, 
of wMch Kiuperli, his master, had taught him to detest the 
usage, persuaded the Sultan to consult the divan and the 
mufti on the legitimacy of such an execution. 

The divan and the mufti were unanimous in refusing him 
the sanction legal or religious of the crime. Mahomet lY. 
desisted before this reprobation of his counsel. He let his 
brothers live, and married his sisters, Aische and Aatika, to 

A precarious peace suspended hostilities between the 
Turks and tiie Bussians, who mutually interdicted each 
other to erect fortresses in the neutralized territory between 
the Boug and the Dneister. 



Meanwhile, at the oommencement of 1682, the intestine 
dissensions of Hungary, of which one moiety leaned to Aus- 
tria, the other to Sie Turks, furnished Kara-Mustapha the 
pretexts, the motiyes, and the occasion of accomplishing the 
cherished project of the two Kiuperlis against Austria. 

The pretexts were in &ct numerous, the motives well 
founded, the occasion opportune ; but since the two ereat 
ministers had passed away into the tomb, the head and hand 
alike were wanting for the execution of so vast a plan. It 
is rare in history that an idea conceived by a man of genius 
does not prove abortive in the hands of a mediocre. Kara- 
Mustapha had inherited an enterprise above his strength. 

Let us turn back a moment to the left bank of the Dan- 


The emperor Leopold, the instrument of the religious 
persecution against Protestant Germany, had added in Mora- 
via and in Hungary the grievances of oppressed conscience 
to the umbrages of outraged nationality. The blood of the 
Hungarian aristocracy, devoted to country and to reform, 
flowed unceasingly beneath the axe of the executioners ; the 
Counts de Serin, de Nadasti, de Frangipani, de Trattembach, 
decapitated by the headsmen of the Catholic emperor, in 
1671, had left avengers in their children and in their com- 

One of these chiefs of the Hungarian reformers and 
rebels. Count Tekeli, had fallen in battle, disputing his coun- 
try with its oppressors; in him one half of Hungary saw 
expire its Machabee, but it did not expire with him. That 
heroic and constant race accepts no yoke, even that of vic- 
tory; it believes more in right than in fortune; it never 
yields alive what is sought to be wrested from it of its 
liberty. It had tempered its forces in the blood of those 
great martyrs of its cause ; it chose for chief the young son 
of the patriot Tekeli ; it deemed that he who had his father 
to avenge in defending his country would be more irrecon- 
cilable with tyranny than any other of its great citizens. 
Love, liberty, filial vengeance were combined in the heart of 
young Tekeli to make him the hero of independence by 


nature as well as policy. He was, by his mother, a grandson 
of Count de Nadasti, one of the most imposing names of the 
Hungarian aristocracy ; he was since his adolescence taken 
with the charms of the daughter of Count de Serin, of 
whom Austria had sought the hand for its protégé the prince 
of Transylvania. He wished to reconquer her at the cost 
of his blood ; this passion was the second spring of his 
glory. For Ood and for country was the motto of his 
banners. For the Countess <^ Serin was the secret device 
of his heart. There was nothing of venality in the heroism 
of his troops ; they were paid only by the acclamations of 
their country and by l^e spoils of âieir enemies. 

Three times in three years, under the command of 
.Tekeli, the Hungarians triumphed in pitched Wttle over the 
armies of Leopold ; the imperial generals had but military 
science, whereas Tekeli and his companions had the genius of 
their free land which rose in insurrection beneath their steps. 
The ministers of Leopold, unable to vanquish, attempted to 
seduce him. Honorable truces were concluded between him 
and the Imperialists ; he was called to Vienna to treat as an 
equal of the conditions that might pacify Hungary, and of 
the partition of the provinces between Leopold and him. 

In these negotiations he detected a snare laid against his 
liberty or against his life; he absconded from Vienna, 
returned into his camps, invoked, like all the chiefs of civil 
factions, the aid of the foreigner and of the iufidel against 
his countrymen of another party than his. The Hungarians, 
leagued anew by him with the Turks, formerly enemies, now 
liberators, became the vanguard of the Ottomans in G-er- 
many. Tekeli, flattered by Kara-Mustapha into the hope 
of the crown of Hungary, was in fact proclaimed by the 
divan king of Upper Hungary, by the title of King of 
the Hungarians and the Transylvanians. He married and 
crowned with his own hand his betrothed, the beautifiil 
Helen de Serin, become widow of the Transylvanian prince, 
vanquished and slain. Like all refugees he surpassed against 
his own country the ferocity of the Ottomans, of whom he 
directed the invasions into Germanic Hungary. 

Thousands of his compatriots fell by the sabre of his 
cavalry. Like the Spaniards of the new world, who asso- 
ciated the very brutes in their extermination of the innocent 
Indians of America, he had trained bloodhounds to scent, to 
hunt and to tear, even to the caverns of the mountains of 
Vol. III.— 17 


Horaria, the purtisanB of imperial dommation. The terror 
of his name ran from the Danube to the Rhine and from the 
Yistala to the Alps. 

He traced out, a long time before war was declared, 
between Mahomet IV. and Leopold, a broad route of flame 
and blood to the armies of the grand vizier; at the same 
time he was far from encouraging, by his agento at Constan- 
tinople, Kara-Mustapha in marching upon Vienna. He was, 
if not too Christian, at least too poUtio to convert a civil war 
of the reformers against the Catholics into a crusade of 
western Europe against the Turks ; he only sought to wrest 
by the sword of the Turks, Hungary and Tnunsylvania from 
the talons of Austria, to make them, under his own sever- 
ei^ty, a kingdom annexed to the Ottoman empire. Hia 
crmies, in this enterprise, equalled his exploits. As intre- 
pid, as cruel, but less patriotic than Scanderbeg, the Hunga* 
rian adventurer had the fate of all the Coriolanuses whom 
despair impels to the betrayal of their race : he received a 
precarious empire from the hand of strangers, he lost it with 
their withdrawal He ended his days in exile, at Nic(Hne- 
dia, and his very ashes after him received a hospitable 
resting-place only on the land of the enemies of his God and 
of hia country. 


But, at the moment when he was dreaming the accom- 

Çlishment of the plans of the two Kiuperlis against Vienna, 
!ekeli, already proclaimed king of the Hungarians and of 
Transylvania, was flanking with an army of sixty thousand 
cavalry the troops of the pashas of Ofen, ready to join the 
Turks and the Tartars, to whom the Porte had assigned as 
rendezvous the Danube in the plains of Pesth. The new 
king of the Hungarians, Tekeli, under the name of the 
Kruczes, the pashas of Eoumelia, of Temeswar, of Erlau, 
the actual prince of Transylvania, Apafy, eighteen regiments 
of Janissaries, hosts of spahis cavalry took together the for- 
tress of Fulek, and piled thousands of prisoners in wells dug 
in advance to serve as prisons or as tombs to the partisans 
of Leopold. 

Count Kohary, a Hungarian nobleman, condemned to 
this punishment by Tekeli, -apostrophized him in descending 
into it with the fortitude of a patriot and of a believer, who 


wonld not at any price, even that of liberty itself, betray his 
religion and his country : "I prefer descending into those 
pits," said he as he passed in chains before Tekeli, ^' to seeing 
the crown of Hungary placed by the hand of those infidels 
on the brow of a traitor who has made himself a slave to be 

Similar acts of hostility before the declaration of war 
were habitual, in Hungary, between the Ottomans and the 
subjects of the German empire. Negotiations went on still 
at Constantinople, fighting commenced already on the Dan- 
ube. Count Caprara, ambassador of Leopold, followed by 
a numerous cortege bearing rich presents, conferred for 
form's sake with the reïs-effendi, minister of Foreign Affairs. 
These conferenoes, envenomied on one side by the exigencies 
of Kara-Mustapha, who reclaimed the ancient tributes and 
inadmissible cessions of provinces and fortresses, on the 
other side by the agents of Tekeli, of Apafy, and of the 
Translyvanian envoys, 'interested in an irreconcilable war 
which protected their independence, consumed their time in 
vain. The immense preparations for this campaign were 
finished at Constantinople, under the eyes of Caprara and 
of his retinue. The ambassador, ceremoniously bowed off 
by the grand vizier, delayed no longer to return to Vienna. 

The army, two hundred thousand men strong, seasoned 
in the campaigns of Candia, of Bagdad and of Persia, under 
Kiuperli, were encamped already beneath their tents in the 
plain of Daoud-Pasha — this campus martius of the Otto- 
mans at the gates of Constantinople, on the side of Europe. 
The Sultan was to accompany it as far as his re^dence of 
Adrianople. Soliman the Grreat had not displayed more 
royal and military pomp at the opening of his memorable 
expeditions against Grermany or against Persia. 

The récitais of Count Caprara, preserved in the archives 
of Vienna, and collected by De Hammer, are pages of 
history which resemble the poems of the East* 

* Even for the reason of this resemblance — the " poems of the East ** 
being no more poetiy than they are history, being neither fish nor flesh 
— I spare the reader the several pages which our author fills up with the 
transcription. It is the same garish catalogue of gold and silver, of silks 
and sugar-works, of furs and /an/ar», which I have given already two or 
three times. To this extent, such things may be presented as curious, 
and even as instructive, by history ; but beyond this, to keep repeating 
them is inexpressibly nauseating. — Translator, 



Mfthomot IV. stopped at Belgrade; he receired there 
the homages and the tributes of the enToys of Tekeli and of 
the allied republic of Ragusa; he* delivered to the grand 
yizier the green banner of the Prophet, a war horse, a sabre, a 
fur-mantle, a heron-plume, as enrmbol of his supreme authority 
during the campaign. Tekeli himself, attended by a hun- 
dred and twenty Hungarian knights on horseback, by a hun- 
dred and fifty hussars wearing gold-embroidered vests, came 
to render homage of his crown to the Sultan. He was 
dressed with that warlike luxury which the Hungarians 
borrowed from the Tartars and the Asiatics. Six heyducs 
on foot, clad in tiger skins, went before him ; the green banner 
of Hungary floated above his head ; the flag was torn into 
two strips to image the severance of the country into two 
adverse nations. A host of mounted heyducs and huziars, 
whose caps were decked with snow-white plumes, caracoled 
around their new king. He himself, covered with a short 
pelisse of sable fur, and equipped in glittering armor, bore 
the ensigns of the royalty cconquered by his sword. Kara- 
Mustapha received him as a king, and leaving the Sultan at 
Belgrade, advanced in the steps of Tekeli, across Hungary, 
of which this ambitious refugee described the route. Half 
through patriotism, half through terror, all bent before the 
deluge of Ottomans. The presence of Tekeli and of the 
magnates of his party put to silence the outraged natiour 

The Austrian army, soon encountered by the vanguard 
of the Turks, was thrown back by this mass as f&r as Kaab. 
This fortress to be invested and carried, irritated Kara- 
Mustapha, impatient to strike the empire at the heart, by 
marching upon Vienna. He held a council of war in view 
of Raab, to decide on the direction of the campai^. The 
old warrior Ibrahim, victor of th^ Poles and of the Russians, 
represented to him vainly the danger of advancing into a 
hostile and unknown country, leaving behind him forts and 
garrisons which might bar return in case of reverses. 

" A king of Persia," said Ibrahim to him, to back his 
counsel by a parable, " laid a treasure contained in a purse 
upon a broad carpet, and calling his courtiers, he gave the 
treasure to him who should find means to pick up the purse 
without walking on the carpet. The muni&cence of tibe 


king appeared illasorj, when one of the attendants, folding 
and rolling up the carpet by its margins, attained in this way 
the purse wiâi the hand without haying trodden on the eloth. 
Follow this example, O vizier," added Ibrahim, '' and fold 
up Austria piece by piece, before touching the capital, which 
will be then without the nation to defend it." 

" Old dotard," said Mustapha brutally to the old man, 
" thou reasonest like a head enfeebled by thy eighty years. 
Thou wilt remain here as a man incapable of fighting, and 
thou wilt take charge of provisioning from a distance the 

" Vizier," replied with boldness the sage Housseïn, gov- 
ernor of Syria, and whom the Arab manners had accustomed 
to respect the wisdom of age, ^^ do not outrage so our father 
the paisha, who gives thee the best counsel" 


The sole counsellors of Mustapha were his temerity and 
his ignorance. He left Ibrahim in reserve with a hand&l of 
Tartars to guard the convoys, crossed the Leitha, carried the 
fortresses, dispersed a second time the feeble army of Leo- 
pold beyond Pesth, killed some five hundred of the bravest 
of his cavalry, and wounded mortally prince Louis of Savoy, 
volunteer in the army of the Imperialists. The two best 
generals of Leopold, Caprara and MontecucuUi, unequal in 
numbers to the Ottomans, sheltered themselves behind the 
walls of Vienna, disseminating by their recitals the popular 
terror of the Turks, of whom the immense columns re- 
sembled the migration of a people rather than an army. 
The timid Leopold himself augmented this public terror 
by removing precipitately from the capital, the "night pre- 
ceding, with his family, lus treasures, his court, and repairing 
for security to the asylum of the Alps of Styria. The con- 
flagration of cities and of villages, multitudes of men, of 
women, of children, of flocks, flying from their burning 
dwellings and filling all the routes with the waUings of an 
entire nation, preceded the Turks. 

At sunrise, the 14th of July, 1683, the Tartars, forminff 
the vanguard of Kara-Mustapha, appeared to the consternated 
inhabitants of the capital. The slaughter in a body, by the 
Tartars, of three thousand five hundred suppliants dhut up 
in a tower, come forth on the fiikitk of a eapitulation and pre« 


eêdëd by a beautifbl youug woman crowned with flowers, who 
presented them the keys of the tower, re-echoed to Vienna 
the cries of the yictims and the ferocious joy of the execu- 
tioners. There were seen, from the hiffh walls, oonyoys of 
forty thousand slaves chased like cattle before the horses of 
the Tartars, and winding with their lugubrious files along 
the pathways of Styria. Count Stahrembcrg, goyemor of 
Vienna, resolying to bury himself with his garrison of ten 
thousand men beneath the ruins of the capital, responded to 
the first summons of Kara-Mustapha by burning himself 
the vast suburbs of Vienna. The Turks, astoniiwed, com- 
prehended that a capital which wrapt itself by its own hand 
in a cincture of flame and of smoke, was determined to sacri- 
fice itself for its religion and country. 


While this smoke was veiling Vienna from the eyes of 
the Turks, the duke of Lorraine, generalissimo of the German 
troops, issued from the city at tne head of thirty thousand 
cavalry, Austrian, Croatian, Polish; and traversing the 
Danube, marched to meet the reinforcements which Germany 
and Poland . promised to send him to aid Vienna. The 
Danube, over which the duke of Lorraine threw bridges 
behind him, saved this nucleus of the army. Vienna, in 
default of troops, rose and armed itself to a man ; laborers, 
students, burghers, old men, all turned soldiers. The tongue 
was removed from the monster bell of the tower of Saint- 
Stephen, the cathedral and tomb of the empire, so that the 
tolliDg of this belfry should not apprise the Turks of the 
movements of the city. Small bells, carried through the 
streets of the city by tlie hands of children, became the low 
toned tocsin of the mute city. At the tinklings of this 
confidential tocsin, the soldiers, the burghers, the students, 
were to run each to* the post which had been assigned 
them in advance. 

During these preparations of distress, the three hundred 
thousand Turks, Tartars, Hungarians, completing the in- 
vestment of the city, and re-establishing the bridges of boats 
on the Danube, dressed their tents and dug their trenches in 
a vast circumvallation which engirded the river itself within 
its lines. The Greek Cantacuzene, prince of Wallachia, 
sumamed by the Tjirks themselves Scheïtanoghli, son of. 


Botany had fonned Ms lines and erected his batteries upon a 
wooded eminence, separated from the Turks, his allies, near 
Houzendorf on the borders of a forest, of which he cut 
down the trees to build the bridges across the Danube. This 
implacable enemy of the Christians had erected a cross in 
stone of ten toises in height, upon an altar whence he had 
his priests to celebrate him mass in sight of the crescent of 
his masters; a perfidious seducer of the wife of his pre- 
decessor on the throne of Wallachia, raised to the sover- 
ei^tj by his trickery, adulation, versatility — ^the arms of 
this Greek were a horror to the population of Vienna. His 
piety contrasting with the cause which he served and with 
his crimes, made of the name of Scheitanoghli, descendant 
of the Byzantine emperors, Cantacuzenes, the symbol of 


The siege, as furious as that of Candia, had now been 
prosecuted seventy days, with the alternations of eighteen 
assaults made and repulsed, and the extremities of distress 
and of famine, without the besieged, abandoned to themselves, 
having received any indication of relief sent by Christendom 
to the last of its defenders. Europe, indifferent to the 
dangers of an empire of which the ambition had depopu- 
larized the cause by its pretension to universal monarchy, 
armed for Austria but some few volunteers. The inco- ^ 
herence and the distension of these ill-computed elements, * 
of which was composed, and of which is still composed 
to-day the German nationality, gave to the Germanic con- 
federation the sloth and selfishness of members without a 
head, more unsuited for defence than for attack. The Chris- 
tian fanaticism of the crusades was as extinct as the 
Mussulman fanaticism of conquest ; all was politics in this 
war, wherein were seen Hungarkm Calvinists, Moldavian, 
Wallachian, Transylvanian Catholics, Servian and Greek 
Christians, celebrating their mysteries in the midst of 
Mahometans on the hills around Vienna. 

An intrepid Pole, former interpreter of the ambassadors 
of his nation at Constantinople, was the first to deceive the 
vigilance of the Turks, to bring to the defenders of Vienna 
the hope that had begun to abandon them. This adven- 
turer, named Koltschitzky, traversed the camp of Mustapha 

393 HiaroBT or tuxkbt. 

nDginff, in the garb of a street nrasioiaii, Tarkish sragB 
which Drought the soldien «round him. Having got to the 
brink of ^ Danube in front of the ramparts, he threw 
himself into the river and escaped by swimming between 
two waters, the ballets of the Turks. He brought to 
Stahremberg the news of the approach of the duke of 
Lorraine and of the king of Poland, Sobieski, at the head 
of seventy thousand combatants. Rockets launched during 
the following night from the tower oi Saint-Stephen i^rised 
the generals of the imperial army, that Vienna was brealliing 
still under the ruins of her bastions, and that their message 
had rejoiced the hearts of its patriots. 


Poland was the sole nation which the Oaiholicism of its 
people, and the heroism of its king, John Sobieski, had 
raised up to the succor of Austria. Her long resentments 
for her old humiliations against the Turks and the recent 
fflory of the victory of Choczim, which had taught her to 
despise her enemy, had popularized the holy war against the 
Ottomans in Poland. The inclination of her king had dona 
the rest 

We have above said that heroic Poland had been at all 
times a faction rather than a nation. She had ended in 1832, 
by givinff herself a constitution as anarchical as her ohsa- 
acter. Louis d'Anjou, of the royal house of France, the 
last of the hereditary kings of Poland, had left in dying 
but two daughters. 

The second and most beautiful of these dauglt^ters, 
named Edwidge, was but fourteen years old at the death of 
her father. The Poles, seduced by her precocious beauty 
and by her virtues in expectancy, proclaimed her queen of 
Poland, under condition that the nation would retain over 
its young sovereign the paternal authority which would 
lead her to mar^y a prince of its choice. But the heart of 
Edwidge had chosen before the diet of Poland. One of her 
cousins, William of Hapsburg, duke of Austria, brought* up 
with her in the palace of her father, was the husband and 
the king whom she designed herself. This young prince, by 
his graces, by his education, by his valor, would have 
attracted the eyes of any princess of his time; but an 
a£fection, so to say fatal, assured to him the heart of Ed- 


Vfdge. ^ It seemed* to her," slie used to say to the Poles, 
*^ that they had been brought up in the same cradle." 

William of Hapsburg, cidled secretly by her to Cracow 
to solicit her hand from the diet, &iled to bend the Polish 
nobility, who dreaded in a prince of the house of Austria a 
dominator rather than a king. Neither the anguish nor 
the tears of Edwidge could avail to mollify her people. An 
idolatrous barbarian, clothed in skins of wild beasts, of 
manners as ferocious as his countenance, Jagellon, duke of 
Lithuania, was imposed as husband on the grand-daughter 
of Saint Louis, and as king upon the polished Smrmatians, 
those Italians of the north. 

The ambition of strengthening Poland against the Eus* 
sians, the Tartars and the Cossacks, by the adjunction of 
Lithuania, determined the diet to sacrifice to this barbarian 
the daughter of their kings. Eesigned to her lot, and 
ferrent in the zeal of converting the Lithuanians to the 
Catholic faith, Edwid^ commenced by converting her bus* 
band, and pursued with him in Lithuania, at one time by 
the persuasion of her charms and her eloquence, at another 
by force, the conversion of her new people to the God of her 
infancy. History records, both with admiration and with 
horror, the recital of this strange mission of Edwidge and 
of Jagellon in Lithuania to substitute Chrbtianity for idol- 

Whilst the beautiful and eloquent queen of Poland 
preached to the multitudes attracted by astonishment and 
interest upon her path, the barbarous Jagellon, attended by 
priests no less implacable, constrained and martyrised the 
obstinate adherents to the old faith. To the end of sparing 
the time of the missionaries in the ceremonies of an indi- 
vidual baptism, the king shoved, under, the sword of his 
soldiers, entire multitudes into the current of the river and 
had them thus baptized $n mass$y not giving often but a 
nngle saintly denomination to a whole horde. 


Since the extinction of the Jagellons, Poland, becoming 
more and more republican, had elected in its diet an aris- 
tocratic and military senate, kings more resembling 
consuls than monarchs. Its tribunitian and prœtorian 
constitution seemed to have combined all the vices of mon* 
Vol. IIL— 17* 

894. HI8T0BT 07 TtTBKET. 

•réfaieal, of military, of feudal, and of republican goyem^ 
ment Its existence was but a standing candidature of its 
turbulent nobles for the throne, and a perpetual ûiction 
against the king which it had chosen. 

The policy of the Poles abroad savored of those ever-* 
lasting competitions at home; each party, alternately im- 
perilling its country to remain faithful to its preferences or 
antipathies, sought its support and its allies among foreigners» 
In the midist of so many intestine agitations a single virtue 
remained to the Polish nobility, herobm. They were the 
first soldiers in the world. We have seen their perpetual 
oscillation between Hungary, Austria, Sweden, Russia, Tur- 
key, even Tartary : a people hitherto rather Oriental than 
European, they had accepted for a long time the vassalage 
of the Ottomans; but their nobility rendered them as 
incapable of servitude as of liberty. Excess in all things 
was their nature ; they had glorious days upon the field of 
battle, but no security in their country. 


Such was Poland at the moment when it gave birth to 
one of those men who save and immortalize their nations, 
when nations can be saved. This man was Sobieski, pre- 
destined one day to be the shield of Eucppe. 

John Sobieski, according to his late historian, M. de 
Salvandy, author of a justly valued publication on this hero, 
was bom in 1624 in the Carpathian mountains, in the castk 
of Olesko, during a memorable storm, wherein the thunder- 
bolt, in menacing his cradle, seemed to announce to Poland 
a man of brilliancy and report coming into the world. He 
was of the blood of those Sarmatian heroes called l^e 
nobles of the buckler , whose names were lost in the fabulous 
origins of the country. He has related himself, in an histor- 
ical notice, the exploits of his father, James Sobieski, the 
vanquisher of the Turks in the battle of Ohoczim. 

" The remembrance of James Sobieski, son of Mark," 
says he, '^ remains profoundly engraven in my heart : he was 
my father. He commenced his military career under the 
ereat Zolkiewski, in that former war of Muscovy which 
delivered to young WladisLas the throne of the czars. In 
liie following exp^ition, he was of the number of the chiefs 
charged, on the refusal of Zolkiewski, to command the army 



Mid to present the prince to the people who had chosen him 
for master. Wounded in the arm at the storming of 
Moscow, mj father attended however all the subsequent 
campaigns of those stormy times, always followed by his 
hussars of ordinance whom he kept up at his own expense, and 
whom from their conspicuous valor, as well as their rich uni- 
form, occasioned to be named the golden troupe. It was he 
who in the glorious campaign of Choczim, member of a com- 
mission invested with full powers from the diet to conduct 
the hostilities, succeeded in concluding peace with the em- 
peror Othman II. Since this success, he was charged with 
all the negotiations of the republic with the Swedes, the 
Cossacks, the Tartars, the Muscovites, the Turks. Four 
times the nuncios plac^ him at their head in the diets, by 
electing him marshal, and he ended by attaining, from rank 
to rank, to the post of first secular senator of Poland, under 
the title of castellan* of Cracow." 

His mother, Théophile Danilowiczowna-Sobieska, waa 
the grand-àaughter of the illustrious grand hetman Zolki- 
ewski, conqueror of Moscow. At the commencement of the 
same summer in which she gave birth to her glorious son, a 
band of Tartars had invaded her manor of Olesko, where 
she was at the time with her mother Danilowiczowna and 
her grandmother the widow of Zolkiewski. . These three 
women, at the head of their domestic household, defended 
valiantly their castle, their liberty, their honor, the hero who 
was going to be bom, and whom die din of arms had come to 
visit before the cradle. 

John had an elder brother, of whom he says in the same 
manuscrijTt note : ^^ My elder brother, named Mark, like my 
grand-uncle, was to. arrive at the age of manhood but to be 
murdered by the Tartars. All my family have thus met 
death by the hands of the infidels in the defence of our holy 
religion ; I alone was reserved for other destinies by the divine 
will." That John Sobieski saw completely his mission 
would appear from this single modest and pious expression. 

His. father, James, vanquisher of Othman II. had given 
his country the peace which is brought by victory. His boy- 
hood elapsed during the prosperous years which this peace 
had procured for Poland, and under the influence of the cur- 

* A title of the first-class senators in the old constitution of Poland. 


rent of civUizatioii wbicb was readiiogat length 4àMe oonoe 
trios, always trodden and devastated by the savage or the sol- 
dier. His Vacation profited by this ; he spoke seven or eight 
langoaffes, knew the foreign literatures, played on several 
musical instruments, painted with facility, as he 'mounted 
superiorly a horse, and handled all arms with an admiraUe 
dexterity. Hb father, of whom the eloquence had often 
swayed the diets, and who knew the influence of oratory in 
republics, exercised him also in wielding this weapon of the 
soul ; he made him more eloquent than himself He sent 
him also to travel, first to Paris, to complete his education ; 
then in Turkey to make him measure the proportions and 
sound the strength of that formidable power, whom he had 
designated in his policy and in his £ûth as the enemy which 
must be combated and vanquished. 

His mother had collected at Jolkiew, the centre of the 
vast possessions of the family, all the remains of her kindred 
fidlen by the hand of the Ottomans and of the Tartars. 
James had even ransomed from Othman II. the head of the 
great Zolkiewski, for a long time attached to the gates of 
the seraglio after the fatal day of Kobilta, to bring it to 
this rendezvous of death and heroism. A monastery of 
Dominicans, erected by Théophile, received this deposit, and 
it is related that she used to conduct, almost every day, her 
children to those venerated relics. There she used to pray, 
and inflame their imagination and their heart with all the 
combats, with all the martyrdoms of the family. Often the 
catastrophe of Kobilta used to recur in those reiterated 
narratives between the tombs and an altar. The scene 
always impressed the boy with deep emotion. There the 
mother used to read him a letter of farewell, addressed to 
King Sigismund by his grandfather, ihe grand hetman, and 
dated from this last of h^ fields of battle, as a testimony of 
policy and of war. 


While his father was commanding the Polish troopis 
upon the Boug and illustrating himself jn the diets, the 
young. Sobieski, received and admired in France for his 
martial beauty and his precocious genius, was dazzled with 
the nascent splendor of the court of Louis XIV., enrolled 
himself, to learn the profession of arms, in the musketeers 

msTKmr of txtmckt* 387 

{£ the king's guard, and was formed, in ^ intimacy of tiie 
great Condé, at this school of heroism. Pursuing his travels 
from Paris to Constantinople, he was recalled into his 
country by a civil war between two armed factions, that of 
King Wladislas and that of Chmielnicki, this Polish Oorio- 
knus, who led the Cossacks into his country. 

The inter-reign, after the death of Wladislas, in opening 
the era of anarchies, united Poland to the barbarians. The 
nobility, assembled at Warsaw, to tear each other's eyes out 
in disputing for election to the throne, was on the verge of 
being surrounded in its capital. Zamosc, already invested 
by the Cossacks and by their Polish allies, was ready to give 
up to the barbarians the last citadel of liberty. Sobieski 
threw himself athwart the enemy, rallied the public courage, 
sustained the siege, repulsed the barbarians. The new kii^ 
elected, John Casimir, obtained a precarious peace, soon 
followed by a fresh confederation against him. Sobieski 
triumphed over it in the victory at Beredesoo, which left « 
breathing respite to the country. But dissensions were 
perpetually prevalent among a people who recognized their 
eountry but in camps. . The Bussians of Peter the Great 
inundated the provinces^ of the north ; the partisans of the 
king of Sweden, Charles Gustavus, delivered him in his 
turn the thrcme of Poland ; the final word of the partition 
of Poland was pronounced aloud by the Swedes and Bussians. 

But the» hour of this Europeim crime, unfortunately 
provoked by the turbulence of that aristocracy, had not y^ 
struck. There remained to Poland a great citizen in a hero. 
The inspiration of supreme danger had him elected com- 
mander-in-chief. Inundated by Cossacks, by Tartars, by 
Bussians, by Hungarians, by Transylvanians, called by the 
Poles into their provinces, the Sarmatians needed a soldier a 
stranger to all these parties and dominating all by hit 
superior impartiality.* Sobieski accepted the command a« 
the post of danger, the breach of the country. He took in 
hand the sword of Poland. 


But the extremity of the danger was not sufficient to fill 
up the great heart of Sobieski; the noble passion which 

* Here is, in two words, the secret of the success and genius of Louis 
Map^eon. — Trtmsbtkr, 


bMt ftUies itaelf to heroiam in men of large natnral propor- 
iionB, love devonred the hero. He adored the b^ntifnl 
oountess Zamoyski, whom the death of her hnsband had 
rendered free at the moment of the coronation of Sobieski. 
The ooantees Zamoyski was a yonng French woman, taken 
to Poland, as maid of honor, by the last qneen of the Poles, 
the prinoess de Nepers. Her name was Marie-Oasimire 
d'Arqnien ; her beauty and her wit had distingaished her to 
the admiration of Warsaw. 

Sobieski, less a king than lover, forgot for her the poUoy 
which ooonselled him to seek an alliance with the great 
funilies of his country ; he forgot even the decency which 
interdicts a widow of only eight days to pass from mourning 
to marriage; his impatience of felicity had driven him to 
marry her before a week had dried the tears which she was 
bound to pay a first husband. Eeady to enter on a cam- 
paign against numerous and virulent enemies, he was unwil- 
ling to die without having possessed a wife whom he 
C'*»rred to an empire. We shall see by and by this woman, 
me queen, form the delight and the torture of him who 
had given her a throne with his heart. 


A battle of twenty-sevoi days at Podhaïc against the 
Poles, the Cossacks, the Tartars and the Turks comederated, 
restored to him the soil of Poland ; a second battle agai^t 
two hundred thousand Turks of Ibrahim- Pasha gave him an 
European renown. Christendom rung with his name in all 
its temples; he received the name of Buckler of Ghrisé, 
this early surname of his fathers. He returned to attend 
more closely with a handful of patriots to the turbulent diet^ 
where the nobUity, partitioned between the differmit powers 
of Europe, were rending the country and preparing it a prey 
for foreigners The entire nation is at length convoked to 
rescue Poland from the nobles. Gratitude pronounces the 
name of Sobieski. Entire Poland responds by an acclama- 
tion which appoints him king. He refuses in vain; the 
public safety constrains him to acc^t the crown. All the 
parties are Bilent a moment before this name. He confirms 
the aj^intment by the victory of Choczim against the 
Turks, the first superiority of the Sarmatians Qver the 
Ottomans. The Turks named him the Lion of the North. 

mif ÛB7 07 TUBKST. ^9 

It lia0 been teen that, far from abasing his success, Sobiedd 
had sent ambassadors and presents to Constantinople to 
confirm peace after victory. The rashness and ignorance of 
Kara-Mustapha had embittered these negotiations. Sobi- 
eski,' apprised of the preparations of tiie grand vizier, had in 
Tain invited Europe to a defensive crusade against the 
Ottomans. The emperor Leopold himself, the most menaced 
of all the powers, had declined his offers. The Polish 
nobles, always of the party opposed to their kings, had 
refused Sobieski their consent to the war. France, adiied to 
Turkey and hostile to Austria, fomented at Warsaw the 
spirit of resistance to the plans of Sobie^ But the three 
hundred thousand men of Kmra-Mustapha crossing thjB Dan- 
ube to inundate Germany, the persbtence of Sobieski, the 
disinterested and religious enthusiasm of the Polish people 
for its faith, constrained at length the diet to ratify reluc- 
tantly the alliance, of Poland and Germany. 

The voice of Sobieski had roused Savoy, Italy, Spiun, 
Portugal. Turin sent the emperor subsidies and volunteers ; 
the king of Spain sold his gold and silver table service to 
pay the defenders of his house and of his faith ; the con- 
vents of Spain and of Italy made up collections to defray 
the expenses of this universal war ; the cardinals of Borne, 
by the example of Pope Clement XI., alienated ecclesi- 
astical property to defend the Church endangered so near 
the Alps; the Catholic provinces of the south were furrowed 
with pilgrimages and processions to all the altars, to implore 
the aid of miracles in &vor of SobieskL But Sobieski was 
himself the true miracle. 

The Turks advanced upon Pesth ; the duke Charies ^ 
Lorraine, generalissimo of Leopold, but generalissimo almost 
witiiout an army, called immediately the Poles to a junction,^ 
which could alone supply his weakness. Leopold, exiled 
from his capital, offered entire Hungary to the king of 
Poland in lieu of his assistance. Sobieski, more chiva&ous 
and more christian than ambitious, did not wish for other 
reward than the victory ; he would have blushed to fight as 
a mercenary for Christendom. Glory and heaven were the 
sole pay for his heroism. After lumng visited on foot and 
as pilgrim all the churches of Craeow, the day of the festi- 
val of the Assumption, he rushed forthj with the dite of 
the Polish armies, to the relief of Vienna. Germany hailed 
him with a 017 of hope. Triumphal arches, erected at all 

400 smoBT av tobkbt* 

points upon hk pMsige, bore for motto tiie Latin wofAi, 
aUoding to his ftitnre destiny : Salvaiorem êû^>êetamu$ (we 
are expecting a savior). 

It was in hct the safety of Vienna which approached 
with him. Three days later the bulwark of the empire, of 
Austria, of Italy, of Cbristoidom) would have crumbled. 
The two armies of Charles of Lorraine and of Solneski, in 
uniting within a march of Vienna, did not amount togeth^ 
to OYW sixty thousand combatants. These were all that 
Christendom, cooled by the inanity of its old crusades, and 
disaffected towards the house of Austria for its universal 
amlHtion, had been able to rally against ^e three hundred 
thousand Asiatics of Kara-Mustapha. 


The hour was pressing. Vienna, crushed beneath the 
mortars of the Ottoman artillery, was but a plain ploughed 
by the continuous explosion of bombs; the churches, the 
monasteries, the palace of the emperor, entire sections of the 
capital, were smoking in ruins ; the trenches of the enemy 
were but thirty paces from the counterscarp ; ihe batteries, 
armed with the same monstrous cannons which had opened 
the breaches of .Constantinople, of Rhodes, of Candia, were 
preparing broad Inreaches for the last assaults. Count Stah- 
lemberg, wounded hj^ the e^losion of a bomb, was now 
commanding, but from a bed of pain ; the soldiers and the 
inhabitants, in measuring each morning with the eye the 
personal losses of the preceding day and the rapid diminu* 
tion of their battalions, began to tidk of an inévitable and 
approaching capitulation. 

Two months had passed away in the most terrible per« 
plexity, in c<»nbats of daily recurrence. Pestil^ice was 
superadded to the bombardment. The munilâ^is were ex- 
hausted, and a mournful despair was seizing on every soul. 
In September, a half-mo<m fell into the power of ÛLe he- 
negers, a part of the wall had fallen in. It was urgent to 
throw up tarendies at the entrance of the streets : it was the 
last effort. Stahremberg no longer hoped to hold out be- 
yond three days, and each night the signals of distress 
announced to Charles of Lorraine that the fall was becoming 
inevitable. In the middle of the night preceding ihia third 
md last day, a cry of joy rung of a sudden from the hig^ 

HI6T0BY 09 T9REST. 401 

tower of Saint-Stephen. It was the sentinel who had just 
descried a brilliant light upon the summits of the Calenberg, 
and which signalized at the horizon the Polish army. The 
Bun on rising broke upon a forest of lances and of streamers 
which unfolded itself over the mountain. ^ 

The Turks were then seen to divide themselves into 
three bodies : one to turn towards the new combatant who 
was presenting himself, the other to prepare for the assault ; 
the third, a symptom of deliverance, was but a disorderly 
multitude who fled towards Hungary carrying off the booty. 
The bishop of Neustadt, Gollonitz, who had fought as sol- 
dier at Cuidia, and who now was shut up in Vienna, where 
hb piety, his courage, his exhortation animated the defence, 
where his example and his charity aided in supporting so 
many sufferings, called forthwith Ùie women and children to 
the churches, while Stahremberg took off the men to the 


Already for some days back Charles of Lorraine had 
run to join Sobieski, to learn, said he, the business of war 
under so finished a master. The Imperialists wept with 
joy in seeing the illustrious chief whose name alone was a 
first victory. Discord, which always attends on reverses, 
was paralyzing their last strength ; it was extinguished at the 
feet of the hero of Choczim, who met in his new soldiers 
an obedience which he had never experienced from his own 

Meanwhile Charles of Lorraine had succeeded in throw- 
ing a triple bridge across the Danube, within six leagues of 
Vienna, while me gnmd viiier had done nothing to hinder 
him. ^^ You see plainly, that the general who, at the head 
of three hundred thousand m&a, has let this bridge be 
constructed under his nose, cannot fail to be beaten," cried 
Sobieski, to draw across the Danube the Imperialists who 
where hesitating to follow him. 

The following day the Danube was crossed. The Poles 
marched foremost j liie magnificence and the beauty of their 
arms and of their horses astonished their allies. A single 
regiment of infantry formed a blot by their tattered uniform. 
'^ This," said Sobieski, ^^ is an invincible band who have vowed 
never to array themselves but in the q[K>il8 of the enemy." 


" If these words did not clothe them," says the abbé Coyer, 
one of the biographers of Sobieski, " they caressed them." 

Sobieski had not been before at the head of forces so' 
oonsiderable. The steep chain of Calenberg, covered with 
forests on its sides, furrowed with narrow gorges, easy to 
cnard, separated him still from Kara-Mnstapha, who did not 
dream of availing himself of a barrier so difficult to cross. 
Nothing could alarm the confidence of the vizier. The 
laborious march of the allies across the mountain lasted 
three days ; they were obliged to abandon there their heavy 
artillery. The foremost scouts, who from the last clifb 
descried the formidable camp of the Ottomans, took forth- 
with to flight and spread through the ranks the terror with 
which they were stricken ; the Imperialists especially were 
profoundly dismayed. Sobieski cheered their courage by 
his martial gaiety and his assurance. He had enrolled in 
his guard a troop of Janissaries whom he had formerly made 
prisoners. On the eve of combating the«Turks, he proposed 
to them to return to the baggages, or even to rejoin the 
camp of Kara-Mustapha. AU responded, with moistened 
eyes, that they would live and die but for him. 


His letters to his wife, Casimhre d'Arquien, reveal 
better than history the agitation of mind, the anguish of 
heart, and the refuge for his thoughts, sought in love by 
Sobieski, the eve of the dav when he was going to fight the 
battle of Christianity agamst the three hundred thousand 
Ottomans already before hb eyes. The heroes who write, 
such as Caesar, Frederick and Sobieski, on the eve and the 
morrow of battles, are the confidants of posterity. 

" If occasionally I fail to write you at length, my dear 
wife, is it not easy to explain my huny without the aid of 
injurious suppositions? The combatants of two divisions 
of the earth are now but a few miles dbtant from each 
other : my thoughts must be every where; I must provide for 
the smallest detail. * I implore you, my heart, for the love 
you bear me, not to rise so early in the morning; what 
health could withstand it, especially in retiring so late as 
you are accustomed to do. You will afflict me if you do not 
pay attenticm to my entreaty ; you will deprive me of rest, 
you will deprive me of health, and what is worse, you will 


damage yonr <wni, wMch is my sole comfort in this world. 
As to our mutual affection, let us see which will cool thé 
more. If my age be. not that of ardor, my heart and my 
soul are still as young as ever. Were we not agreed, my 
love, that it was now to be your turn, and that it was you 
who was to make the advances ? Have you kept your word 
to me, my heart ? Do not, therefore pretend to cast your 
own wrong upon another." 


Scarce had this letter of affection to his wife been 
written, the night. of the 12th of September, 1683, than 
Sobieski, coming forth at day break from his tent at the 
booming of the canpon of the Ottoman army, saw on the 
one side the columns of the Janissaries disposing themselves 
in masses for a last assault before the breaches of the ram- 
parts of Vienna, and on the other the aged Ibrahim-Pasha, 
the octogenarian hero of the Turks, fall with the impetuosity 
of fatalism upon the vanguards of the Polish army on the 
flanks of the mountain. Ibrahim, traversing at a gallop 
those advanced posts, dismounted with his sps3iis at the foot 
of the intrenchments thrown up by the di^e of Lorraine. 
Sobieski, without hastening thither, but seeking his support 
and his inspiration in prayer, was at that moment hearing 
mass in the open air, from a poor hermit, near a ruined 
chapel, whence the eye could survey the whole field of battle. 
The service over, Sc3[)ie8ki remounted his horse, and rushed 
with his Polish cavalry upon the enemy. 

The Christians, marching in five columns, carried one by 
one, from ravine tq ravine, foom precipice to precipice, from 
defile to defile, from wood to wood, thé positions from which 
fell back step by step the squadrons, charged to arrest them. 
From the breach the garrison of Vienna witnessed the 
resistless course of their liberators ; it made itself some 
heroic efforts against being crushed before the hour of 
rescue. Thus far Kara-Mustapha kept motionless between 
these two battles. 

At eleven o'clock the allies were in the plain; it was 
already a victory. Their adversaries beat back, left them 
time to takebreatL At noon the Mussulmans were rallied 
and swelled by powerful reinforcements; they sustained a 
second struj^e more terrible still. But the skilfiil marshal- 


lings of Sobieskiy hki impetnoiiB and precise manoeuvres 
preFailed, and the Christian armj appeared upon the glacis 
of the camp. There recommenced a third and the last 
battle. The whole Ottoman army pressed around the stand- 
ard of the vizier; Kara-Mustapha commanded in person. 
A deep ravine, intrenchments, a formidable artillery, covered 
him on all sides. It was five o'clock in the afternoon ; the 
king surveyed the obstacle, and did not hope to end the 
struggle the same day. He was thinking therefore of pass- 
ing the night in those new positions, when in running along 
die lines of his troops, he found them more exhilarated than 
fiktigued from their victorious march, through so many combats 
and under the pressure of a stifling heat. The attitude of 
the Ottomans, on the contrary, seemed downcast and discour- 
aged. He perceived afur,. through clouds of dust, the long 
mes of camels that thronged the routes of Hungary. The 
attack was decided. 

Meanwhile the confidence of the grand vizier was not 
shaken.; he felt assured that the Christians would be dashed 
to pieces upon his intrenchments. He was seen, shaded by 
a tent of crimson silk from the rays of the sun, taking coffee 
tranquilly between his two sons. Sobieski, furious at this 
foolish and disdainful security, ordered the French officer 
who commanded his infiintry to take possession of a redoubt 
which commanded the quarters of Kara-Mustapha. This 
order is executed with viçor. The enemy is disturbed by 
it. At the same instant, Kara-Mustapha, who is ruffled at 
kst, calls to his defence the infantry of the risht wing ; this 
movement uncovers his army and deranges tne entire line. 
It was the pivot of the victory. Sobieski seized it like a 
master : he pushed at once the duke of Lorraine on thé half- 
opened centre, while he hastened himself to the dense 
masses that covered the tent of the grand vizier. The 
Tartars and the spahis recognized him. His name flies along 
the front of the Ottoman army. His presence is at length 
believed. " By Allah ! " criea the Khan of the Tartars in 
terror, " the king is with them." 

The hussars of Sobieski have crossed, at full speed, the 
ravine where the infantry had hesitated; they rush into 
the enemy's ranks and cut in twain their battle array, while 
the prince of Waldeok is turning the oamp. The day is de- 
cided ; the grand vizier, fallen from the height of his arro- 
gance, weeps like a woman. Meanwhile he tries to rally his 


troops^ who are running off. All is flight ; he flies himself 
in the midst of this army in disorder, which is no longer 
but a terrified multitude. It was the flood of the Ottoman 
power that was receding for ever. Entire Europe saw a 
miracle in this panic terror of the Turks. This last battle 
had lasted but an hour ; it was therefore more decisive than 
murderous. It does not appear that the army of the grand 
vizier had lost more than 8 or 10,000 men. In his terror, 
however, he stopped not till he reached the walls of Raab, 
whilst the king, dreading an offensive return, took all the 
cautions of an anxious, but now unnecessary prudence. 

The following day Sobieski entered the delivered city, 
through the breach which the enemy were preparing to 


Entire Vienna came forth from its walls in ruins to form 
a cortege to the army of its liberator. The contrast of 
Leopold absent, and of the king of Poland sacrificing his 
blood and that of his people to rescue her, might at this 
moment have made Sobieski the emperor of Austria and of 
Hungary. ^^ There was a man who was sent from God 
whose name was John," said the clergy of Vienna in apply- 
ing to him the words of the gospel. But Sobieski wished 
for his victory but the honor of having saved the West. 
He avenged lumself of his desertion by all the powers of 
Europe, only by announcing with his own hand, to the most 
Christian king of France, the victory of the Christians won 
without him and against him. Such were his sole reprisals. 

His letter to his wife, written the night of the battle in 
the tent of Kara-Mustapha, become his spoil, lets posterity 
into the pure and tender soul of the hero : the only trace of 
pride is in the date. 

" In the tent of the grand vizier, the 13th September, at 

" Sole joy of my soul, charming and beloved Mariette, 

• " God be for ever blessed ! He has given victory to our 
nation ; he has given it a triumph such as past ages have 
never seen the like. All the artillery, the whole camp of 
the Ottomans, countless riches, have fallen into our hands. 
The approaches of the city, the plains around are covered 
with the dead of the infid^ army, the residue fled in conster* 


■mtioD. Our pe(H>le are bringing in momently camels, mnlefl, 
oxen, sheep, which the enemy had with him, and also an 
innamerable multitade of prisoners. Besides we receiFC a 
larffe number of deserters, most of them converts, well clothed 
and well mounted. The victory has been so sudden and so 
extraordinary that in the city and in our camp all were still 
in alarm ; the enemy was thought to be seen returning every 
moment He has left behind m powder and munitions to 
the value of a million of florins. 

*^ I have witnessed this night a spectacle which I had 
desired lor a long time. Our wagon drivers set fire to the 
powder in several places; the explosion was like that of 
the dav of.judrment, without however hurting any body. 
I could see on that occasion how the clouds are formed in 
the atmosphere; but it is a misadventure. It is over a 
half million of loss. 

" The vizier has abandoned every thing in hb flight ; he 
has carried away only his clothes and his horse. It is I who 
am established his heir ; for the greatest portion of hb riches 
are fallen into my hands. 

" Advancing with the first line, and driving the vizier 
before me, I met one of the domestics who led me into the 
tents of his private court ; these occupy to themselves alone 
a space as large as the city of Warsaw or of Leopold. I 
took possession of all the decorations and the banners that 
are wont to be borne before the vizier. As to ihe great 
banner of Mahomet, which hb sovereign had confided to 
him for thb war, I have sent it to Saint-Peter by Talenti. 
Besides, we have rich tents, superb equipages and a thou- 
sand other toys very beautiM and very rich. I have not yet 
seen all; but there b no comparison with what we saw 
at Choczim. For instance, four or five quivers, mounted with 
rubies and with sapphires, are alone worth some thousands 
of ducats! You will not say to me then, my heart, as the 
Tartar women do to their husbands when they return with- 
out booty : Thou art no warrior, since thou hast brought me 
nothing ; for it b only the man who pushes forward that can 
pick up something. 

" I have abo a horse of the vizier with the entire har- 
ness. He has himself been pursued closely^ but escaped. 
Hb kihag or first lieutenant bis been killed, as well as a 
number of other principal officers. Our soldiers have taken 
possession of a number of sabres mounted in gold. Night 


pat an end to the porsuit : and besides, although fleeing, the 
Turks defended themselves sternly. In this respect they 
executed a most beautiful retreat. However, the Janissaries 
"were forgotten in the trenches, and at night they were all 
cut to pieces. Such were the pride and the presumption of 
the Turks, that while a portion of the army was giving 
us battle, another part was storming the city. Accoraingly 
they had wherewith to meet these various exigencies. I esti- 
mate them, without the Tartars, at three hundred thousand ; 
others have reckoned three hundred thousand tents, which 
would imply a number of men beyond all known proportions. 
For my part, I reckon nearly one hundred thousand tents, for 
they occupied three immense camps. The Turks have left in 
fleeing many captives of this country, especially women, but 
often having massacred as many of them as they could. 
There is then a large number of women killed ; but also a 
great many are only wounded, and may still recover. I met 
yesterday a child of three years old, a charming little boy, 
whose head one of the cowards had cut hideously across the 
mouth. The vizier had seized, in one of the psdaces of the 
emperor, a beautiful ostrich ; but he has also cut ofl' its head 
to prevent its return into the power of the Christians. It is 
impossible to detail all the refinements of luxury that the 
vizier had united in his tents. There were baths, small gar- 
dens with jets of water, rabbit warrens, in fine a parrot 
which our soldiers have given chase to without catching. 

" To-day I have been to see the city ; it could not nave 
held out beyond five days. The imperial palace is riddled 
with bullets; those immense bastions, creviced and half 
crumbled, have an awful aspect ; they look like masses of 

" All the troops have done well their duty; they attrib- 
ute to God and to me the victory. At the moment when 
the enemy had begun to swerve ( and the most violent shock 
took place where I was, by the grand vizier), all the cavalry 
of the rest of the army pushed towards me on the right 
wing, the centre and the left wing having already little to do ; 
I then saw advancing M. de Bavière, the prince Waldeck and 
others ; the generals kissed my hands and feet ; the soldiers 
and the officers, foot and horse, exclaimed : Ah 1 unser brave 
Konigl (Ah, our brave king!) All obey me still better 
than my own troops. 

'' The commandant of the city, Stahremberg, came also 

408 HunoftT or tubxxt. 

to see me to-dftj. All those people liare embraeed lae, and 
hare giren me the Dame of sayior. I hare been in two 
charc&s where the people have kiased mj handa, feet, clothes; 
others, who could net get near enongh to touch me, cried, Ah! 
give us to kiss your victorious hands ! Thej seemed to wish to 
ory vivat ; but they were restrained by fear of the officers uid 
the superiors. Howeyer, a mass of the people broke out into 
a sort of vivat. I remarked that the superiors regarded 
them with displeasure ; accordingly, after haviug dined widi 
the commandant, I hastened to quit the city and return to 
the camp. The multitude reconducted me to the gates. I 
see that Stahremberg is on bad terms with the magistrates 
of the city. In receiving me, he did not present any of the 
civil authorities. The emperor has made known to me that 
he is at a mile's distance. . . . But behold, the day- 
begins to dawn ; I must close this letter. I am no longer 
left the power of writing and of conversing with you in ^ia 

*' Our loss has been heavy in the battle ; we have to 
regret especially two persons, of whom Dupont will tell 
vou. Among the foreigners, the prince De Groy has been 
killed ; his rather is wounded, uid they have further lost 
some other persons of distinction. 

^^ Father Aviano has embraced me a million of times 
with joy ; he pretends to have seen during the battle a white 
dove hovering over our armies. 

^^We put ourselves in motion to-day to pursue the 
enemy into Hungary. The electors have told me they 
would accompany me. 

" It is really a grand benediction of God. Honor and 
glory be rendered him now and for ever 1 

"As soon as the vizier saw that he could keep his ground 
no longer, he had his sons called by him, and set to weeping 
like a child. He then said to Uie khan of the Tartars: 
^Save mey if thou canst.^ The khan answered: 'We 
know the king of Poland well ; it is impossible to resist 
him; let* us rather bethink us of escaping.' 

'^ I am at this moment mounting horse to march into 
Hungary, and I hope, as I have said in leaving you, to see you 
at ItryL Let Wyszynoki repair the fireplaces and prepare 
the apartments. 

'^ This letter is the best gazette, and you may use it to 


that end, letting it be known that it is the letter of the king 
to the queen. 

" The princes of Bavaria and of Saxony are determined 
to follow me to the*ends of the earth. We must double our 
pace for the two first miles, on accouilt of the insupportable 
infection of the corpses, as well of men as of horses and 

** I have written to the king of France ; I have said to 
him that it was more especially to him, as most Christian king, 
that it was fitting to make my report of the battle won, and 
of the salvation of Christendom. 

*' The emperor is but a mile and a half from here. He 
comes down the Danube in a boat ; I perceive that he has no 
great desire to see me, perhaps on account of etiquette. 
He is hastening to Vienna to get chanted the T$ Deum. 
This is why I give place to hSn. I am well content to 
avoid all these ceremonies ; we have been regaled only with 
these to this day. Our son is brave to excess."* 

This dol]^^stic bulletin, which ^ves us to read the happi- 
ness of the lover and of the father m the heart of the hero, is 
the most living recital of the battle that saved Europe. 
Glory, usually ferocious or haughty, becomes there pathetic 
like love ; the tone of sadness, which transpires beneath the 
happiness in the letter of Sobieski, was the presentiment of 
the indifference of Germany for so great a service, and the 
persecutions that awaited him from his ungrateful and fac- 
tious countrymen. 


This presentiment did not deceive him. Leopold, who 
knew neiâier how to vanquish nor even to fight, jealous of 

♦ Assuredly, if all his majesty's epistles wew of this proportion, the 
queen must have been quite exacting in oompkdning of his brevity, even 
fts a mere manœuvre of French coquetry. She could not, as a woman, 
write more lengthily herself, and as a French woman, would not certainly 
write so disorderly. Sobieski may, as a hero, be classed with Cesar, and 
with Frederick ; but he had evidently nothing of either in the way of 
wielding the pen. It is possible, that the two former have at the same 
time been profane philosophers, and that the pious Pole said his prayers 
before and after, and during his battles. The mental state which this 
implies is in fact more favorable to heroism than that cool-headedness 
which gives the power of ^stematic and succinct statement. But the 
bulletin of Sobieski is puerile, and the tact of citing it in his applause ia 
worse. — TraniUUor, 

Vol. III.— 18 

410 HI8T0BT or TUBKIT. 

ofiended at, the glory of Sobieski, not pardoning him the 
Bervioes which he had just received from him, astonished the 
world by his ingratitude : it seems to have been at all times 
the destiny of the imperial governmenf. 

Whilst all the peoples of Europe uttered cries of enthu- 
siasm like that of Vienna, and felt themselves delivered by 
him ; whilst the Protestants as well as the Catholics cele- 
brated* the victory of Sobieski, while all the pulpits were 
resounding with his glorious name, while Innocent XI. fell 
at the foot of the crucifix and burst into tears of joy, on 
receiving the banner of the Prophet which was sent him by 
the victor, Leopold, preoccupied with the prerogatives of 
his rank, humiliated at himself, irritated at the transports of 
hb subjects, thrown in the shade by his liberator, troubled 
about the promises which he had made to determine his 
alliance, instead of running to meet him, returned to Vienna 
only to avoid him, and held council but to discuss the 
question of precedence regarding him. 

Sobieski cut short this puerile difficulty, a%he relates it 
himself The interview had place on horseback.. Leopold 
remained cold and was scarcely courteous ; he had not even 
the hypocrisy of gratitude. The king, astonished at this 
sordid ingratitude, could not refrain from saying to him : ^' I 
am well pleased, sire, to have rendered you this small ser- 
vice." It was his whole vengeance, but that of Leopold did 
not stop there. Petty diffi^culties and intrigues surrounded 
Sobieski and his army. Their trophies were disputed with 
and filched from them. They were refused succor for their 
wounded, Christian sepulture for their dead. They were 
left exposed to die of hunger before the walls of Vienna. 

" At present," wrote the king, " we are like persons with the 
plague whom everybody shuns ; whilst before the battle, my 
tents, which, thank God, are sufficiently spacious, could scarce 
contain the crowd of arrivals." He wished to march for- 
ward, to profit by the victory, but he was met by a thousand 

Besides, this ingratitude of the emperor extended to 
almost all those who had contributed to save him; it was 
proportioned to the services. The allies, indignant, aban- 
doned in crowds the imperial camp. Sobieski, s^ost alone, 
despite his officers and the whole army, who pressed him to 
withdraw at length from the outrage, remained faithful to 
the cause which he had embraced. 


" My destiny," said he, " is to oblige everybody and to 
have nothing to expect but from God." He put himself 
then in motion ; he wished to deal a second decisive blow, as 
he wrote the queen. He was advancing already through the 
plains of Hungary, still impelling the Turkish bands before 
him, when the Imperialists were still deliberating under the 
walls of Vienna. 


The sloth of the Grermans in the pursuit of the grand 
vizier saved the wrecks of the Ottoman army, and permitted 
them to rally behind Gran. The emperor Leopold, as we 
have said, had at last decided to elude the difficulty by 
meeting Sobieski on horseback. This cold interview between 
the herd and the fugitive restored to his capital, is traced 
naïvely in the letter of Sobieski to his wife. 

" The emperor,'' says he, " had in his train some fifty 
courtiers and ministers. Trumpeters preceded him : body- 
guards and a dozen valets walked behind him. I will not 
describe the emperor, his portrait is known to you. He was 
mounted on a bay horse of Spanish race ; he wore a tight 
coat richly embroidered, a hat of French fashion, with an 
agraffe and white and red plumes, a belt mounted with 
sapphires and diamonds, the sword the same. We saluted 
each other sufficiently politely ; I made him my compliments 
in Latin and in few words ; he responded in the same tongue, 
and in choice terms. Being thus face to face with one 
another, I presented him my son, who approached and 
saluted him. The emperor did not even put a hand to his 
hat ; I was quite shocked at it He treated in the same 
manner the senators and the hetmans, and even his ally, the 
prince palatine of Belz. To avoid scandal and the comments 
of the public, I again addressed some words to the emperor, 
after which I turned my horse : we made a mutual salute, 
and I returned to my camp. The palatine of Russia has 
showed our army to the emperor, as he desired ; but our 
people have been quite provoked, and complained loudly that 
the emperor had not deigned to thank them, were it only by 
touching his hat, for all their pains and privations. After this 
separation, all was suddenly changed ; it is as if we were no 
more known. 

" We no longer get either provisions or forage ; it is re- 


fdaed us to buy our dead in the cemeteries of the city. I 
myself have had the greatest trouble to obtain hospitality in 
a conyent to repose my head. After so great a battle, 
wherein we have lost so many men ' and so many sons of the 
most illnstrions of our families, we are besides losing our 
horses and our baggage, and we are exposed to the pity 
and laughter of those whom we haye deliyered. Oh, my 
Ood 1 it is enough to make one die ten times a day -to see 
escaping, through their sloth, so many beautiful occasions of 
annihilating the Turks, and so many glorious yictories. I 
put myself in march tonlay to get away from the city 
of Vienna, where fire-arms haye been discharged at my 
soldiers." ♦ 


During these tergiyersations and these delays of the 
troops of the Emperor, who seemed to fear to giye a second 
yictory to Sobieski, Kara-Mustapha, under shelter behind 
Baab, was casting upon his lieutenants the blame of his 
disaster. Beproaching the aged and braye Ibrahim-Pasha, 
ffoyemor of Ofen, for his thrM hundred cannons left in the 
batteries before Vienna, his tents and his treasures become 
the spoils of the enemy : '^ Thou old yisier,'' said he to him 
in fuU diyan, '^ thou whose hairs are grown gray in the ser- 
yice of the Forte, thou hast let Ihyself be yanquished, thou 
hast turned to flight to gratify thy jealousy towards me, but 
thou art going to bear the penalty of thy defeat." 

He oniered the chief of the tschaouschs to cut ofiT the old 
man's head before his tent The head of the brayest of the 
Ottomans fell to eniate the route of an incapable yizier. 
The execution rabed murmurs in the army, but, retempered 

* What this letter, like the preceding, seems to me most strikingly 
to rereal, is the moral and mental weakness of SobieskL Wonld any 
soldier ik real energy or organizing faculfy, permit a city he had just 
saved and which was absolutely in his power — nay the mere gover- 
nors of the city, for the people were all favorable— to maltreat himself 
and army in this manner ? The treatment was provoked no doubt by 
the fear of the ooward Kmperor, that Sobieski might very naturally take 
advantage of this situation ; and it must have been encouraged by a 
special knowledge of the Poles. This people have never been able to 
conduct any thing with system ; and to this is due the methodless and 
madcap fervor of their intrepidity, which has dissembled, to the super- 
ficial, the general weakness of the national character.— TVions^oft»*. 


by terror, the discipline of the troops rallied around Mus- 

Sobieski, become impatient of waiting the German aux- 
iliaries, followed too rashly the two hundred thousand 
Ottomans, picking up along the way the stragglers of the 
grand vizier. His humanity spared the vanquished. 

" My dear wife," writes he, " I had left Vienna, and was 
maroiiing in the vanguard ; I perceived in a valley a large 
castle in ruins. I asked what it might be ; upon the answer 
that it was the place where lions were kept, I approached it 
and heard some shots. I sent to ascertain what that meant, 
and learned that it was some fifty Janissaries, escaped by 
night from the trenches of Vienna, who had shut themselves 
up in the tower, hoping that the vizier would rally and re- 
turn to the charge. They refused all capitulation with the 
German& In fact, they had killed a number of their assail- 
ants, and they could scarce be dislodged but by the explosion 
of a mine. I sent to say to them that I was there in person ; 
they then surrendered, and were conducted safe and sound 
into my camp. I also found in the tower a lioness almost 
famished, wMch I ordered to be fed ; but what was better, 
we have found biscuit enough to load some fifty thousand 
wagons : for this was the provision store of the army of the 

" Hungary, which I am traversing," wrote he to his dear 
Mary, "is a clump of earth which, if squeezed in the hand, 
would give out but human blood. The emperor has set out 
firom Vienna for Linz. I have sent him some beautiful 
saddle horses, which he seemed to desire, equipped with 
harness, covered with diamonds, rubies and emeralds ; I have 
sent also to the prince of Anhault, my friend, a beautiful 
horse caparisoned. As to myself, I will be reduced, perhaps, 
to return to Poland with buffaloes and camels. The tent of 
the grand vizier was full of perfumes, balms and jewels, 
which one wearies not of admiring ; he has left us very fine 
things ; especially all that pertained to his body were of the 
rarest and most marvellous." 

XXIX. . 

A malady like the plague decimated his troops and at- 
tacked himself upon the mardby banks of the Danube, near 
Presburg. Even this scourge did not succeed in severing 


him from pursuit of the Turks. His wife, more ambitious 
than he, did not cease to reproach him bitterly, for not 
Mpropriating, as the meed of his victory, the kingdom of 
Hungary. His loyalty shrunk from despoiling the emperor 
whom he had come to assist The queen, an object of his 
constant tenderness, joined hb enemies at Warsaw in scold- 
ing him severely for not making peace with the Ottomans, at 
the price of Hungary wrested from Austria and abandoned 
by them to Poland.* 


Meanwhile the internal factions of Poland, with whom 
his wife herself associated against the heroic policy of her 
husband, resounding along to his camp, sowed insubordina- 
tion in the army, and left him abandoned alternately by the 
nobles of the opposite parties, volunteers almost independent, 
whose defection took off their vassals ; he remained alone 
with a handful of men before the recomposed army of the 
grand vizier. Kejoined at last, on the banks of the Danube, 
near Comom, by the duke of Lorraine, he had it resolved, 
in a council of war, to pass the river with the combined 

Whilst ho was following the bank almost in front of the 
Ottoman army, seeking a site favorable for this purpose, the 
Turks, strengthened by Tekeli, debouching to the number 
of one hundred and twenty thousand men by the bridge of 
Parkan, enveloped him between the Danube and their 
army. All fled before this deluge of Tartars, of Ottomans, 
of Hungarians, resolved to avenge the shame of Vienna. 
Sobieski persists alone to fight with a knot of six thousand 
Polish hussars ; overrun upon the flanks, cut off from his 
infantry, imprisoned in a whirlwind of steel and fire, cannon- 
aded by the artillery of the grand vizier, assailed by the re- 
peated charges of Tekeli and his uhlans, a Turkish trooper 
raised his battle-axe upon his head. One of his staff, giving 
his life for his master's, turns off the weapon of the spahis 

* Here we see the weakness I have suggested in Sobieski, and which 
could not have escaped the French good sense of his wife. Lamartine, 
in trying to gloss it with the name of loyalty and heroism, is mnch less 
trae to tibis good sense, than to poetic partialities. He mnst always have 
his hero oi a piece, in good or eyil. — Translator, 


and receives the deadly blow ; his squadrons piled with their 
horses and their bodies the marshy plain, through which they 
sought their sole refuge from the Turks. The vigor of the 
horse of Sobieski seemed to redouble by the knowledge of 
the danger of his master ; he saved the king almost unknown 
to him. Sobieski, scarce recovered from the illness which 
had exhausted his vigor, enervated by long combats, covered 
with blood, crushed with pain, had no longer the strength to 
guide his horse ; upheld on his saddle by two pages, who sup- 
ported him under the arms, his breast drooped forward, his 
head tottering under the helmet, like a drunken man, he knew 
not whither me gallop of his feeble escort was taking him, 
and was aroused from his lethargy only to demand with 
terror where was his dear child, separated from him in the 

Beaching the foot of an eminence whence his artillery 
kept off the spahis, he was laid inanimate upon a bundle of 
reeds ; his son, saved by a French gentleman who had shel- 
tered him in a ruined chapel, aloof from the field of carnage, 
fell into his arms ; the father and the child commingled their 
tears. The duke of Lorraine arrived at last with the body 
of the army, and generously relieved Sobieski from his de- 
jection. The hero did not seek to palliate his defeat. " I 
have been well beaten to-day," said he to the duke of Lor- 
raine, " let us think about vanquishing to-morrow." 

Three days after he bore off the last of his victories on the 
same field that witnessed his disaster, and forced the Turks 
to repass the river upon the bridge of Gran, broken down* 
and submerged by his artillery. The Danube ingulfed thirty 
thousand Ottomans, Tartars and Hungarians, who precipitated 
themselves into the waves to escape the sabre of Sobieski's 
cavalry. He himself directing the assault of his infantry 
against the fortress of Gran, of which the battlements and • 
palisades were crowned with heads cut off his soldiers re- 
cently slain at the foot of the walls, five pashas and thou- 
sands of Turks were there slaughtered by the Poles and the 
French volunteers of the army of the kin^. A young page 
of the queen, her relative, named La Mouilly, covered him- 
self with glory and with blood in barring almost alone by 
himself the drawbridge of the fortress by which the Turks 
meant to precipitate themselves from out the place. 

Tekeli, on horseback, with his wife, the beautiful Helen 
de Serin, who used to follow him almost into the conflict 


made his appearance with his anny too late to partake in the 
battle. The Turks accused him, not without grounds, of 
having missed the way designedly in order to leave victory 
to SobieskL His importance in Hungary depended on the 
balance which was maintained between the Turks and the 
Poles ; he meant to thrive by the ruin of both one and the 
other. In this view, he sent to compliment Sobieski on his 
heroism, and offered himself as a mediator of pea>oe between 
the Turks and the Poles 


The letter of Sobieski to the queen, dated from the battle- 
field of Gran, rehires gratitude to Qtoà and to his soldiers. 

" When it was yesterday announced to my infantry that 
I had fallen in the flight, they cried : * Why do we now 
want to live, since we have lost our father ? lead us to the 
enemy and let us die with him ! ' 

" At present, that I am recovered, I will avow to you, 
my heart, that I have been so trodden upon and bruised by 
the fugitives, that in many parts my body was as black as 
coaL The poor palatine of Pomerania was found headless ; 
almost all our pages have perished in the action ; our little 
negro Joseph fell into the bands of the Turks, who cut off 
hb head. I had also a young Hungarian, sp^iking several 
languages, who has perished. But learn, my friend, the fate 
of our Tittle Calmuck : you know his ability in hare hunting; 
well, all his address on horseback was jiot able to save him ; 
I know not by what lucky chance the Turks, who had cap- 
tured, spared him. Yesterday, after the rout of the infidels, 
he was found under one of their tents : our people at once 
recognized him, as well as his horse tied to a post of the tent, 
when a German ran and struck him a blow pf his sabre on 
the face : despite the promises of the surgeons, it is doubtful 
if he will recover. 

" It is a strange thing," adds the hero, superstitious like 
all men who play for great stakes against destiny, " it is 
queer that, on Thursday, when we were marching to the 
enemy, a black dog, without ears, was constantly before us 
without the possibility of driving him away ; and that a black 
eagle hovered, for some time, almost upon a level with our 
heads, and then flew away behind us. Yesterday, on the 


eontrary, a wbite pi^^n alighted sereral times before oar 
Bquadrons ; a very beautifttl eagle, also white, descended in 
front of our lines, and skimming along the earth, seemed to 
conduct us to the enemy.* . . . Kara-Mustapha lias 
fled as far as Belgrade to anticipate the wrath and assus^e 
the justice of his master. As he proposed an escort to the 
Jew who carried his diamonds for fear he should be robbed 
by his own soldiers on the route : " No,'' replied the treas- 
urer, '* I will put on a German cap, and your whole army 
will fly before me." " Alas I alas I " cried the vizier, " it is 
but too true, and the Ottoman proverb is entirely right in 
saving: ^^ Those whom Ood has put to flight would be 
afraid of even a Hebrew.^^ 

" Fanfan, our young son, was well inured to fire on yes- 
terday, for the artillery of the fortress on the other side of 
the Danube cannonaded us incessantly. It cannot be denied 
that the blood of the Polish nobility has flowed profusely for 
the cause of Germany and of Christendom." 

" Sole joy of my heart, charming and weU-beloved Mari- 
ette," wrote he to her some days after, " I have forced five 
thousand Turks and the Pasha of Aleppo to capitulate, in 
the fortress of Stri^nia, possessed for one hundred and fifty 
years back by the Ottomans. To what changes of fortune 
is not this world subject ! God and . glory are our only re- 
compense ! " 


In the midst of these triumphs, he was galled at the 
cruel abandonment of his country, and the jealous opposition 
of his nobility and of his own blood. 

'^ If Poland," Wrote he to Mariette, an accomplice of this 
conspiracy a^inst the continuation of his glory, " if Poland 
was an island in the midst of the ocean, it would be to me at 
present like those of which historians tell us, that thev were 
seen floating above the billows, sometimes visible, and anon 
submerged. For five weeks back I do not know if there be 
a Poland in the world ; it b not so much from this silence 
upon things political that I suffer, as the privation of news 

* Another trait which gives us the mental measure of the Polish 
hero, which suggests also the natural origin of divination in ancient war- 
fare, and which illustrâtes the compatahSity of mere military genins with 
an infancy of intellect in either the age or ue individiuJ*— 'TVoiMtator. 

Vol. ni.— 18* 

418 msftOBY or tubket. 

abont yonr health, on which depend my happiness and mj 

Before retaining to the Ottomans, it is a pleasure to 
mursne this hero on the field of victory along to the tomb. 
Retained fdrcibly in Poland by the constraint of his nobles, 
of his diet and of his wife, leagued against his glory, he 
entered Warsaw in triomph the day whereon Kara- Mustapha, 
returned to Belgrade, received from his master the order to 

Mahomet lY. did not believe him culpable, but the 
nation thought him unlucky ; his execution was a sacrifice 
to fatality. The aga of the Janissaries, sent from Adrian- 
ople to bring back his head, left him through favor the priv- 
ilege of having himself strangled by his own servants. 
Before dying, Kara-Mustapha, who foresaw his doom, had 
made a secret journey to Constantinople to secure to his 
heirs his immense wealth. The Albanian workmen, whom 
he had employed in secreting his treasure in a repository 
known to him alone and to Us children, h&d been Ûlled by 
his order, upon the ground. 

Returned to Belgrade, one dajr as he was exploring with 
the eye the country from the height of his palace, he per- 
oeived a group of cavalry descending the hill ; he turned 
pale, foreseeing the sword or the bowstring brought from 
Adrianople. He sent one of his pages to meet them, intro- 
duced them with distinction, made them sit, and drawing 
himself the seal of the empire from his breast, he kissed it 
in sign of gratitude to the master from whom he had received 
it, said prayer and made ablutions ; then kneeling, he re- 
ceived the cord from the hands of his servants, knotted it 
himself around his neck and expired in blessing, not the 
justice, but the will of the master who made him expiate the 
reverses of Islamism. 


The punishmnet of Sobieski was more tedious and per- 
haps more cruel. The jealousy of the great, the popularity 
of the demagogues, the turbulence of the diets, the dissen- 
sions of the republic, the ingratitude of the nation which he 

* Evidentlj Sobieski was no hero to his pretty oonsort, but on the 
ooDtnuy was fallen into her contempt. But no one is so, sajs the pro- 
verb, to his valet, and still less his wife.— 7Vansfo(or. 


had elerated to the summit of glory and of power, without 
being able to maintain it there, the refusal of subsidies by 
the Poles, the intrigues of his wife, old age, in fine, which 
rusts all things, even genius, the anticipative competition for 
the throne which he still occupied, and the impatient plots 
against his life in his own court impoisoned his long life. 
Never did nation less appreciate the great man whom Prov- 
idence had pointed out as the regenerator of its liberty. 

This Mariette, whom he had so much loved, did but 
aggravate the chagrins which were going to afflict and 
shorten the remainder of this great life. 

" Marie Casimire," says her historian, M. de Salvandy^ 
" was the pest of the hero who had crowned her. Shall we 
exhibit her filling the palace, as well as the republic, with 
her plots and her intrigues ; putting a hand in all public or 
famày affairs, and doing so to carry every where disorder and 
corruption; disturbing by her restlessness of mind the 
household of the king, when it was not by her ambition and 
her avarice ; more abandoned in her caprices without num- 
ber, according as age, which seemed to respect her, made her 
dread an approaching decline ; jealous of the confidence of 
her husband, as another might be of his affection ; exiling 
from the court her own sister and all persons agreeable to 
the king, and giving up the power which she in this way 
retained, to two chambermaids who reigned over her, as she 
did over the king. A single trait wUl show the slavery 
wherein the love of domestic peace, that first of blessings, 
in the eyes of John, plunged the unfortunate monarch. He 
had promised the seals to Zaluski. On a vacancy, he pre^ 
sented them to him. " But, my friend," said he to him, " if 
you accept them I am, undone. I will be obliged to fly my 
house. I do not see where I could go to die in peace." * 

The royal family was, like the palace, a prey to hatreds 
and to anarchy. There, as in the state, Sobieski labored 
vainly to restore concord, disturbed every where by the 
wild passions of the queen. Still alive, his family, Poland 
and Europe were disputing his heritage. Himself, his eye 
fixed upon the void which he was leaving in his unfortunate 
country, was occupied but with repleniâiing it. From the 

* This I think completes the proof of what I haye suggested of So- 
bieski, and which M. de Salvandy also glosses over without poetic rant. 
It needed not a maid of honor, and especially a French one, to take ad- 
vantage of such moral imbecility and old age. — TrantlaUn', 


nûdit of hifl domcstio troubles, his mmd wandered orer the 
fdtore of Poland ; and of all the solioitudes that beset his 
sool, as he has said a thousand times, these were after all the 
most bitter. 

The public lamentation which he gave rent to in re- 
proaches to the senate of Poland, -& little time before his end, 
IS a most eloquent and most pathetic accusation by the 
patriotism of this hero against the turbulence of his 

" Alas ! '' said Sobieski to the senators unceasingly re- 
Tolting agamst him and the country, <**he best knew the 
pangs of me soul, who has said that slight grie& love to com- 
plain, but that the deep ones are mute. The universe itself 
will remain mute, in contemplating us and our councils. It 
seems as if nature should be seized with astonishment : this 
beneficent mother has endowed every thing that has life with 
the instinct of self-coDservation, and given to the meanest 
creatures arms for their defence ; we alone in the world turn 
ours against ourselves. This instinct has been extinguished 
in us, not by some superior force, an inevitable destiny, 
but by a voluntary delirium, by our passions, by the yearning 
to injure ourselves. Oh ! what will be one day the sad sur- 
prise of posterity, to see that, from the pinnacle of so much 
fflory, when the name of Poland filled the universe, we have 
let our country fall into ruin, fall into it, alas 1 for ever ! For, 
as for me, I have been able to gain here and there some 
battles ; but I acknowledge myself destitute of all means of 
safety. There remains to me but to resign myself, not to 
destiny, for I am a Christian, but to the great and powerful 
God, as to the future of my cherished country. 

^^ It is true that, addressinff me, it has been said that I 
had a remedy for the ills of the republic ; it would be that 
the king should not divorce himself from liberty and that hé 
should restore it. . . . Has it then been suppressed, 
senators, that sacred liberty in which I have been bom, in 
which I have grown up, which reposed on the faith of my 
oath ? and I am not a perjurer. I have devoted to it my 
life from my early you<li : the blood of all my kindred has 
tau^t me to found my glory upon this devotedness. Let 
him who doubts it go visit the tombs of my ancestors ; let 
him follow the route which has been opened me by them 
towards immortality. He will recognize, by the trace of 
their blood, the way to the country of the Tartars and to 


the deserts of Wallachia. He will hear to issue, from- iàe 
womb of the earth and from underneath the icy marble, 
voices crying : Learn from me that it is fair andpUasani 
to die for one^s country. I might invoke the reminiscences 
of my father, the glory which he enjoyed of being called 
four times to preside over the assemblies in this sanctuary 
of our laws, and the name of bucJder of liberty, which he 
merited. . . . Trust me, all this tribunitian eloquence 
were better employed against those who, by their disorders, 
call upon our country the cry of the prophet, which I fancy, 
alas ! hearing already ring above our heads : Forty days 
more, and Nineveh will be destroyed. 

" Your mightinesses, illustrious senators, know that I do 
not believe in auguries ; I do not seek for oracles, I put no 
faith in dreams. It is not at all oracles, but faith that in- 
forms me that the decrees of Providence cannot fail to be 
accomplished. The power and the justice of him who rules 
the universe, regulate the destiny of states ; and there 
where there is impunity in daring all, with the prince still 
living, in elevating altar against altar, in seeking foreign 
gods under the eye of the true one, there booms already the 
coming vengeance of the Most High. 

" Senators, in the presence of God, of the world, and of 
the whole Eepublic, I protest my respect for liberty; I 
promise to maintain it such as I have received it. Nothing 
will ever detach me from this sacred deposit, not even 
in^atitude, that monster of nature. I will continue to 
devote my life to the interests of religion and of the renub- 
lie, hoping that Gtod will not refuse his mercies to him who 
never refused to give up his life for his people." 

The irretrievable loss of Poland was to be the penalty 
of its anarchy and its in^titude. Sobieski, who did not 
bdieve in augurs, was himc^lf, unknown to him, in those 
magnificent reproaches, the living oracle of the ruin of his 


As the climax of reverses, his two sons, fired with a fra- 
tricidal ambition, were menacing each other, arms in hand, 
under his eyes, and rent in advance the nation into two 
(^posite actions. Whilst the faction of the prince Sapieha 
enaangoined the diet and overshadowed the very throne in 


its oaitttal, SoUeski nw rising in Bossia, under the hand of 
Peter the Great, the power iiniieh was one day to devour his 
loved Poland. Sickness was devouring himself, aggravated 
bj domestic chagrin in the country solitude where he fled 
vainly the sight of the .anarchy of aie diet : the queen tor- 
tured him on his deathbed by the means of her priests to 
wrest from him a designation to the throne of one of her 

*^ This great man," says the bishop who carried to him 
the insinuations of the queen, " described to me with sobs 
the sufferings of hb body and of his soul ; then, like a man 
overcome by grief : * WUl there be no one then,' cried he, 
'willing to avenge my death ! You see the overflow of vices, 
the contagion of madness in this nation; and can I, who am 
not listened to alive, believe that such a people would execute 
my posthumous wishes ? ' 

In fine, resuscitated a moment from a swoon which had 
suspended his pains with his consciousness : '^ Alas," said he, 
" I was so well in this annihilation of myself ! Wherefore re- 
vive to suffering and to life ?" A second swoon was mor- 
tal ; he expired as he was bom, in the midst of a storm, the 
image of the everlasting storm of his country, bowed, like its 
hero, to the convulsions of anarchy. 

His widow leagued with the faction of the nobles to op- 
pose the election to the throne of his sons, offering her hand to 
the more ambitious of them against her own chUdren. 7he 
throne escaped at the same time the widow and the sons ; 
four thousand electors on horseback, in the plain of Yola, 
put in nomination, sabre in hand, two kin^ at the same 
time, one the protégé of Austria, the other me candidate of 
France, neither of the two a patriot. 

The number of the squadrons at last decided the election 
in favor of a foreigner, prince Augustus of Saxony, candidate 
of Austria and of the Pope. During these tumults, the 
body of Sobieski awaited thirty-six years fbr a tomb. 

Let us return to Adrianople. 


The Sultan, returned to the seraglio of Adrianople, ap- 
pointed, after the execution of Kara-Mustapha, Ibrahim- 
Pasha grand vizier. The post of caîmakam, which he occu- 
pied since the commencement of the war, had prepared him 


for this position. He was a man of integrity and fidelity, 
without other ambition than the service of the state, and 
matured in administration and in war. The traditions of the 
two Kiuperlis revived in him without their genius. Jealousy 
towards the enemies of his who were favorites of the Sultan 
and of Kara-Mustapha, was his sole vice. He removed all 
by either exile or execution. Mahomet IV., who dreaded 
above all things the return of anarchy, that scourge of his 
early years, left complete power to his grand viziers, even 
over his affections. Unity of power was his maxim ; the re- 
sponsibility for this power was execution. All the creatures 
of Kara-Mustapha fell with him. 


Meanwhile Hungary, left to itself, succumbed, city after 
city, to the cannon of the duke of Lorraine and of the 
Poles ; Pesth, its capital, capitulated without siege ; Ofen 
(Bude) sustained numerous assaults under the command of 
the intrepid governor, Kara-Mohammed; hb hand mutilated 
by a bullet, at the head of his artillerymen, he did not cease 
to command the defenders of Ofen. Reclined upon a hand- 
cart at the gate of his seraglio, he was directing the defence, 
when a bomb bursting near him, tore away his bowels. He 
convoked around his dying bed all the generals, and bequeathed 
in their presence with a Srm. voice, before expiring, the com- 
mand to the most worthy, Ibrahim-Pasha. 

" Ibrahim," according to the historian Raschid, " animated 
with such fanaticism his ten thousand warriors, that they 
decapitated thousands of Christians, suspended their gleam- 
ing sabres to the stars of heaven, and that the an^ls who 
sustain the throne of the Eternal applauded from the height 
of the firmament the exploits of the garrison of Ofen." 

This fortress proved the shoal of the Imperialists. They 
raised the siege of Ofen, while Sobieski himself was con- 
strained, after sixty days' enthralment, to raise the siege of 
Kaminieok before the army of Souleïman-Pasha, vanquisher 
of the Poles at BabataghL 


The Venetians, immovable hitherto durinç the undecided 
oampaign of Vienna, availed themselves at last of the vio- 


tories of Sobioski to declare war agûnst Turkey. It was 
Turkey that had attacked the r^ablic. The hour of reprisal 
a{^[>eared propitious to the senate of Venice. Their squad* 
rons took possession of the seren islands of the Adnatio, 
effected deWkations on the continent o( Albania, and 
menaced the Archipehuro. 

A favorite of we Saltan, Mustapha, become captain- 
pasha, confined himself to keeping the sea before the Vene' 
tian fleet between Rhodes and Chio, and carrying off two of 
its galleys. Eighty thousand men were collected at the 
Mme time at Selgrade to succor the cities of Hungary, 
which Tekeli was still defending against the Grermans. 
Three Ottoman armies were thus K>rmed at once under the 
energetic impulse of the new yisier, one destined to drive 
back the Venetians in Dalmatia, another to reconquer Hun- 
gary from the duke of Lorraine, the third to meet the Poles, 
should the negotiations opened for peace at Warsaw not re- 
sult in disarming the king of Poland. 


Peter Valiero, general of the troops of the republic, had 
easily insurreoted against the Turks the descendants of the 
ancient Spartans, the heroic populations of Maina and of the 
mountains of Chimera : those Christian communities of the 
Morea, of Albania and of Dalmatia, were always condemned 
to change of masters. The almost civil wars of those moun« 
tains, between divided populations, were confined to sieges of 
castles and surprises of places, wherein no one could attribute 
to himself the victory. 

In Hungary the Imperialists, tardily embodied to the 
number of seventy-five thousand comlwtants, under the 
duke of Lorraine, under count de Leslie and under mar- 
shal SchuelK, enveloped, by deploying, the whole Hungarian 
territory, as if to sweep away in a single campaign the last 
remnants of the Turkiâi armie& 

'^ I see that there is no more luck to be ezp^ted against 
the Christians,'^ cried in consoling, himself with death the 
ferocious Hassan, begler-beg and governor of Newhoesel. 
This city was laid siege to by the duke of Lorraine while 
Ibrahim-Pasha was besieging with eighty thousand men 
the city of Gran, the pivot of the Ottomans in Hungary, 
c<mquered the year precedii^ by SobieskL Atta^ed in lus 


camp, before Gran, by tbe troops of tbe dnke of Jjorraine, 
Ibrahim abandoned the siege and retired, leaving behind a 
thousand six-ox wagons laden with prorisions and muni- 

The duke of Lorraine, returning after this triumph to 
Neuhoesel, carried the place by storm the 19th August, 
1685. Without perceiving the white flag hoisted by the 
Turks upon the towers in token of surrender, the Germans 
slaughtered them to the number of four thousand, and 
planted the head of the pasha on the gate of Vienna. The 
Mahometan women and children were sold as slaves to the 
officers of the Christian army. Count Leslie subdued, 
burned and massacred in like manner Croatia.