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Selim III ( ota, سليم ثالث, Selim-i sâlis; tr, III. Selim; 24 December 1761 – 28 July 1808) was the
Sultan Sultan (; ar, سلطان ', ) is a position with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic abstract noun A noun () is a word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phone ...

Sultan
of the Ottoman Empire from 1789 to 1807. Regarded as an enlightened ruler, the
Janissaries A Janissary ( ota, يڭيچرى, yeŋiçeri, , ) was a member of the elite infantry Infantry is an army specialization whose military personnel, personnel engage in military combat on foot, distinguished from cavalry, artillery, and ar ...
eventually deposed and imprisoned him, and placed his cousin Mustafa on the throne as
Mustafa IV Mustafa IV (; ota, مصطفى رابع ''Muṣṭafā-yi rābi‘''; 8 September 1779 – 16 November 1808) was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1807 to 1808. Early life Mustafa IV was born on 8 September 1779 in Constantinople la, C ...

Mustafa IV
. Selim was subsequently killed by a group of assassins. Selim III was the son of Sultan
Mustafa III Mustafa III (; ''Muṣṭafā-yi sālis''; 28 January 1717 – 21 January 1774) was the Sultan Sultan (; ar, سلطان ', ) is a Royal and noble ranks, position with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic abstract nou ...
and his wife Mihrişah Sultan. His mother Mihrişah Sultan originated in
Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia (, ; ) is a country located at the intersection of Eastern Europe and Western Asia. It is a part of the Caucasus region, bounded to the west by the Black Sea, to the north and east by ...
, and when she became the
Valide Sultan Valide Sultan ( ota, والده سلطان, lit. 'mother sultan') was the title held by the "legal mother" of a ruling sultan of the Ottoman Empire The sultan Sultan (; ar, سلطان ', ) is a position with several historical meanings ...

Valide Sultan
, she participated in reforming the government schools and establishing political corporations. His father Ottoman Sultan
Mustafa III Mustafa III (; ''Muṣṭafā-yi sālis''; 28 January 1717 – 21 January 1774) was the Sultan Sultan (; ar, سلطان ', ) is a Royal and noble ranks, position with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic abstract nou ...
was very well educated and believed in the necessity of reforms. Mustafa III attempted to create a powerful army during the peacetime with professional, well-educated soldiers. This was primarily motivated by his fear of a Russian invasion. During the Russo-Turkish War, he fell ill and died of a heart attack in 1774. Sultan Mustafa was aware of the fact that a military reform was necessary. He declared new military regulations and opened maritime and artillery academies. Sultan Mustafa was very influenced by mysticism.
Oracle An oracle is a person or agency Agency may refer to: * a governmental or other institution Institutions, according to Samuel P. Huntington, are "stable, valued, recurring patterns of behavior". Institutions can refer to mechanisms which go ...

Oracle
s predicted his son Selim would be a world-conqueror, so he organized a joyous feast lasting seven days. Selim was very well educated in the palace. Sultan Mustafa III bequeathed his son as his successor; however, Selim's uncle
Abdul Hamid I Abdülhamid I, Abdul Hamid I or Abd Al-Hamid I ( ota, عبد الحميد اول, ''`Abdü’l-Ḥamīd-i evvel''; tr, Birinci Abdülhamit; 20 March 1725 – 7 April 1789) was the 27th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, reigning over the Ottoman Em ...
ascended the throne after Mustafa's death. Sultan Abdul Hamid I took care of Selim and put great emphasis on his education. After Abdul Hamid's death, Selim succeeded him on 7 April 1789, not yet 27 years old. Sultan Selim III was very fond of literature and
calligraphy Calligraphy (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is appro ...

calligraphy
; many of his works were put on the walls of mosques and convents. He wrote many poems, especially about Crimea's occupation by Russia. He spoke
Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental countries, transcontinental region ...

Arabic
,
Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated with the Iranian peoples ** Persian language, an Iranian ...
, Turkish and
Old Bulgarian Old Church Slavonic or Old Slavonic () was the first Slavic literary language A literary language is the form of a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Si ...
fluently. Selim III showed great importance to patriotism and religion. He demonstrated his skills in poetry, music and was fond of fine arts and the army.


Reign


Plans of reforms

The talents and energy with which Selim III was endowed had endeared him to the people, and great hopes were founded on his accession. He had associated much with foreigners, and was thoroughly persuaded of the necessity of reforming his state. However,
Austria Austria (, ; german: Österreich ), officially the Republic of Austria (german: Republik Österreich, links=no, ), is a landlocked Eastern Alps, East Alpine country in the southern part of Central Europe. It is composed of nine States o ...

Austria
and
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...
gave him no time for anything but defense, and it was not until the
Peace of Iaşi The Treaty of Jassy, signed at Jassy (''Iași'') in Moldavia Moldavia ( ro, Moldova, or , literally "The Moldavian Country"; in Romanian Cyrillic: or ) is a historical region Historical regions (or historical areas) are geographic areas ...
(1792) that a breathing space was allowed him in Europe, while
Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose to prominence during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refers to the period that began with the Estates General o ...
's invasion of Egypt and Syria soon called for the empire's strongest efforts. Ottoman provinces from Egypt to Syria began to implement French policies and began to differ away from Istanbul after
Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose to prominence during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refers to the period that began with the Estates General o ...

Napoleon
attack. Selim III profited by the respite to abolish the military tenure of fiefs; he introduced salutary reforms into the administration, especially in the fiscal department, sought by well-considered plans to extend the spread of education, and engaged foreign officers as instructors, by whom a small corps of new troops called '' nizam-i-jedid'' were collected and drilled in 1797. This unit was composed of Turkish peasant youths from Anatolia and supplied with modern weaponry. These troops were able to hold their own against rebellious
Janissaries A Janissary ( ota, يڭيچرى, yeŋiçeri, , ) was a member of the elite infantry Infantry is an army specialization whose military personnel, personnel engage in military combat on foot, distinguished from cavalry, artillery, and ar ...

Janissaries
in the
Balkan The Balkans ( ), also known as the Balkan Peninsula, are a geographic area in southeastern Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geograp ...

Balkan
provinces such as the
Sanjak of Smederevo The Sanjak of Smederevo ( tr, Semendire Sancağı; sr, / ), also known in historiography as the Pashalik of Belgrade ( tr, Belgrad Paşalığı; sr, / ), was an Ottoman Empire, Ottoman administrative unit (sanjak), that existed between the 1 ...
against its appointed
Vizier A vizier (; ar, وزير, wazīr; fa, وزیر, vazīr), or wazir, is a high-ranking political advisor or minister in the near east. The caliphs gave the title ''wazir'' to a minister formerly called ' (secretary), who was at first merely a ...
Hadži Mustafa Pasha Hadji Mustafa Pasha ( sh, Hadži Mustafa-paša, Хаџи Мустафа-паша, tr, Hacı Mustafa Şinikoğlu Paşa; 1733—15 December 1801) was an Ottoman commander and politician of Greek Muslim origin who lived in Sanjak of Smederevo (in mode ...
, where disaffected governors made no scruple of attempting to make use of them against the reforming sultan. Emboldened by this success, Selim III issued an order that in future picked men should be taken annually from the Janissaries to serve in the ''nizam-i-jedid''. Selim III was unable to integrate the nizam-i jedid with the rest of the army which overall limited its role in the defense of the state.


Foreign relations

Selim III ascended the throne only to find that the Ottoman Empire of old had been considerably reduced due to conflicts outside the realm. From the north Russia had taken the Black Sea through the
Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca The Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca ( tr, Küçük Kaynarca Antlaşması; russian: Кючук-Кайнарджийский мир), formerly often written Kuchuk-Kainarji, was a peace treaty signed on 21 July 1774, in Küçük Kaynarca (today Kaynard ...

Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca
in 1774. Selim realized the importance of diplomatic relations with other nations, and pushed for permanent embassies in the courts of all the great nations of Europe, a hard task because of religious prejudice towards Muslims. Even with the religious obstacles, resident embassies were established in
Britain Britain usually refers to: * United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United ...

Britain
,
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...
,
Prussia Prussia, , Old Prussian Distribution of the Baltic tribes, circa 1200 CE (boundaries are approximate). Old Prussian was a Western Baltic language belonging to the Balto-Slavic branch of the Indo-European languages The Indo-Europ ...
and
Austria Austria (, ; german: Österreich ), officially the Republic of Austria (german: Republik Österreich, links=no, ), is a landlocked Eastern Alps, East Alpine country in the southern part of Central Europe. It is composed of nine States o ...

Austria
. Selim, a cultured poet and musician, carried on an extended correspondence with
Louis XVI Louis XVI (Louis-Auguste; ; 23 August 175421 January 1793) was the last King of France The monarchs of the Kingdom of France The Kingdom of France ( fro, Reaume de France, frm, Royaulme de France, french: link=no, Royaume de France) wa ...

Louis XVI
. Although distressed by the establishment of the republic in France, Ottoman government was soothed by French representatives in Constantinople who maintained the goodwill of various influential personages. On 1 July 1798, however, French forces landed in
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identi ...
, and Selim declared war on France. In alliance with
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...
and Britain, the Turks were in periodic conflict with the French on both land and sea until March 1801. Peace came in June 1802, The following year brought trouble in the
Balkan The Balkans ( ), also known as the Balkan Peninsula, are a geographic area in southeastern Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geograp ...

Balkan
s. For decades a sultan's word had had no power in outlying provinces, prompting Selim's reforms of the military in order to reimpose central control. This desire was not fulfilled. One rebellious leader was Austrian-backed
Osman Pazvantoğlu Osman Pazvantoğlu (1758 – January 27, 1807 in Vidin Vidin ( bg, Видин, ) is a port town on the southern bank of the Danube The Danube ( ; ) is Europe's List of rivers of Europe#Longest rivers, second-longest river after the Volga Riv ...

Osman Pazvantoğlu
, whose invasion of
Wallachia Wallachia or Walachia (; ro, Țara Românească, lit=The Romanian Land' or 'The Romanian Country, ; archaic Archaic is a period of time preceding a designated classical period, or something from an older period of time that is also not found ...
in 1801 inspired Russian intervention, resulting in greater autonomy for the Dunubian provinces. Serbian conditions also deteriorated. They took a fateful turn with the return of the hated
Janissaries A Janissary ( ota, يڭيچرى, yeŋiçeri, , ) was a member of the elite infantry Infantry is an army specialization whose military personnel, personnel engage in military combat on foot, distinguished from cavalry, artillery, and ar ...

Janissaries
, ousted 8 years before. These forces murdered Selim's enlightened governor, ending the best rule this province had had in the last 100 years. Neither arms nor diplomacy could restore Ottoman authority. French influence with the ''
Sublime Porte , was known as the Sublime Porte until the 18th century. Image:DSC04009 Istanbul - La Sublime Porta - Foto G. Dall'Orto 25-5-2006.jpg, 300px, The later Sublime Porte proper in 2006 The Sublime Porte, also known as the Ottoman Porte or High Porte ...
'' (the European diplomatic designation of the Ottoman state) did not revive but it then led the Sultan into defying both St. Petersburg and London, and Turkey joined Napoleon's Continental System. War was declared on Russia on 27 December and on Britain in March 1807.


Janissary revolt

The Sultan's most ambitious military project was the creation of an entirely new infantry corps fully trained and equipped according to the latest European standards. This unit, called the '' nizam-i jedid'' (the new order), was formed in 1797 and adopted a pattern of recruitment that was uncommon for the imperial forces; it was composed of Turkish peasant youths from Anatolia, a clear indication that the ''devshirme'' system was no longer functional. Officered and trained by Europeans, the ''nizam-i jedid'' was outfitted with modern weapons and French-style uniforms. By 1806 the new army numbered around 23,000 troops, including a modern artillery corps, and its units performed effectively in minor actions. But Selim III's inability to integrate the force with the regular army and his reluctance to deploy it against his domestic opponents limited its role in defending the state it was created to preserve. From the start of Selim's reign, the Janissaries had viewed this entire program of military reform as a threat to their independence, and they refused to serve alongside the new army in the field. The powerful ''derebeys'' were alarmed by the way in which the sultan financed his new forces—he confiscated ''timars'' and directed the other revenue toward the ''nizam-i jedid''. Further opposition came from the ulama and other members of the ruling elite who objected to the European models on which Selim based his military reforms. Led by the rebellious Janissaries, these forces came together in 1806, deposed Selim III, and selected a successor, Mustafa IV, who pledged not to interfere with their privileges. The decree of deposition accused Selim III of failing to respect the religion of Islam and the tradition of the Ottomans. Over the course of the next year, the embassies in Europe were dismantled, the ''nizam-i jedid'' troops were dispersed, and the deposed sultan, whose cautious military reforms were intended to do no more than preserve the tradition of the Ottomans, was murdered.


Austro-Turkish War (1787–1791)

The Austro-Turkish War of 1787 was an inconclusive struggle between the
Austrian Austrian may refer to: * Austrians, someone from Austria or of Austrian descent ** Someone who is considered an Austrian citizen, see Austrian nationality law * Something associated with the country Austria, for example: ** Austria-Hungary ** Austr ...

Austrian
and Ottoman Empires. It took place concomitantly with the Russo-Turkish War of 1787-1792 during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Selim III. File:Rymnik-1789.jpg, Clash between Russo-Austrian and Ottoman Turkish troops in the
Battle of Rymnik The Battle of Rymnik ( tr, Boze Savaşı) on September 22, 1789 took place in Wallachia Wallachia or Walachia ( ro, Țara Românească , literally ''The Romanian Land'' or ''The Romanian Country''; Archaism, archaic: ', Romanian Cyrillic alphab ...
. File:Belagerung Belgrad 2.jpg, Austrian Siege of Belgrade in 1789.


Russo-Turkish war

The first major
Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774) The Russo-Turkish War of 1768–1774 was a major armed conflict that saw Russian arms largely victorious against the Ottoman Empire The Ottoman Empire (; ', ; or '; )info page on bookat Martin Luther University) // CITED: p. 36 (PDF p ...
began after Turkey demanded that Russia’s ruler,
Catherine II the Great russian: Екатерина Алексеевна Романова, translit=Yekaterina Alekseyevna Romanova en, Catherine Alexeievna Romanova, link=yes , house = , father = Christian August, Prince of Anhalt-Zerbst , mother ...
, abstain from interfering in Poland’s internal affairs. The Russians went on to win impressive victories over the Turks. They captured Azov, the
Crimea Crimea; crh, Къырым, translit=Kirim/Qırım; grc, Κιμμερία/Ταυρική, translit=Kimmería/Taurikḗ is a peninsula A peninsula ( la, paeninsula from 'almost' and 'island') is a landform A landform is a natural ...

Crimea
, and Bessarabia, and under Field Marshal
Pyotr Rumyantsev Count Pyotr Alexandrovich Rumyantsev-Zadunaisky (russian: Пётр Алекса́ндрович Румя́нцев-Задунайский; – ) was one of the foremost Russian generals of the 18th century. He governed Little Russia in the nam ...
they overran Moldavia and also defeated the Turks in
Bulgaria Bulgaria (; bg, България, Bǎlgariya), officially the Republic of Bulgaria ( bg, Република България, links=no, Republika Bǎlgariya, ), is a country in Southeast Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north, Serbia ...
. The Turks were compelled to seek peace, which was concluded in the
Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca The Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca ( tr, Küçük Kaynarca Antlaşması; russian: Кючук-Кайнарджийский мир), formerly often written Kuchuk-Kainarji, was a peace treaty signed on 21 July 1774, in Küçük Kaynarca (today Kaynard ...

Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca
. This treaty made the Crimean khanate independent of the Turkish sultan advanced the Russian frontier.
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...
was now in a much stronger position to expand, and in 1783 Catherine annexed the Crimean Peninsula outright.
War War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (new ...
broke out in 1787, with Austria again on the side of Russia. Under General
Alexander Suvorov Alexander Vasilyevich Suvorov (russian: Алекса́ндр Васи́льевич Суво́ров, Aleksándr Vasíl'evič Suvórov; or 1730) was a Russian general in service of the Russian Empire. He was Count of Râmnicu Sărat, Rymnik, Cou ...
, the Russians won several victories that gave them control of the lower Dniester and Danube rivers, and further Russian successes compelled the Turks to sign the
Treaty of Jassy The Treaty of Jassy, signed at Jassy (''Iași'') in Moldavia Moldavia ( ro, Moldova, or , literally "The Moldavian Country"; in Romanian Cyrillic: or ) is a historical region Historical regions (or historical areas) are geographic areas ...
on 9 January 1792. By this treaty Turkey ceded the entire western Ukrainian Black Sea coast to Russia. When Turkey deposed the Russophile governors of
Moldavia Moldavia ( ro, Moldova, or , literally "The Moldavian Country"; in Romanian Cyrillic alphabet, Romanian Cyrillic: or ; chu, Землѧ Молдавскаѧ; el, Ἡγεμονία τῆς Μολδαβίας) is a historical region and forme ...

Moldavia
and
Walachia Wallachia or Walachia ( ro, Țara Românească , literally ''The Romanian Land'' or ''The Romanian Country''; Archaism, archaic: ', Romanian Cyrillic alphabet: ) is a Historical regions of Romania, historical and geographical region of Romania. It ...

Walachia
in 1806,
war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (new ...
broke out again, though in a desultory fashion, since Russia was reluctant to concentrate large forces against Turkey while its relations with Napoleonic France were so uncertain. But in 1811, with the prospect of a war between France and Russia in sight, the latter sought a quick decision on its southern frontier. The Russian field marshal
Mikhail Kutuzov Prince Mikhail Illarionovich Golenishchev-Kutuzov ( rus, Князь Михаи́л Илларио́нович Голени́щев-Куту́зов, Knyaz' Mikhaíl Illariónovich Goleníshchev-Kutúzov; german: Mikhail Illarion Golenishchev-Kutu ...
’s victorious campaign of 1811–12 forced the Turks to sign the
Treaty of BucharestTreaty of Bucharest may refer to the following treaties signed in Bucharest: * Treaty of Bucharest (1812), between the Ottoman Empire and the Russian Empire ending the 1806–1812 Russo-Turkish war * Treaty of Bucharest (1886), between Serbia and Bu ...
on 18 May 1812. Ending the war that had begun in 1806, this peace agreement established the Ottoman cession of Bessarabia to Russia. The Russians also secured amnesty and a promise of autonomy for the Serbs, who had been rebelling against Turkish rule, but Turkish garrisons were given control of the Serbian fortresses. Implementation of the treaty was forestalled by a number of disputes, and Turkish troops invaded Serbia again the following year.


Relations with Tipu Sultan

Tipu Sultan was an independent ruler of the
Sultanate of Mysore This article includes a list of successive Muslim state An Islamic state is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state. In the case of its broad associati ...
, with high regards of loyalty to the
Mughal Emperor The Mughal (or Moghul) emperors built and ruled the Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, ...
Shah Alam II Shah Alam II (Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated with the Iranian peoples * ...

Shah Alam II
. He had urgently requested Ottoman assistance during the
Third Anglo-Mysore War The Third Anglo–Mysore War (1790–1792) was a conflict in South India between the Kingdom of Mysore and the East India Company, Travancore, Kingdom of Travancore, Maratha Empire, and the Nizam of Hyderabad. It was the third of four Anglo–My ...
, in which he had suffered an irreversible defeat. Tipu Sultan then began to consolidate his relations with France. In an attempt to junction with Tipu Sultan,
Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose to prominence during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refers to the period that began with the Estates General o ...

Napoleon
invaded
Ottoman Egypt The Eyalet of Egypt operated as an administrative division of the Ottoman Empire from 1517 to 1867. It originated as a result of the conquest of Mamluk Egypt by the Ottomans in 1517, following the Ottoman–Mamluk War (1516–1517) and the absorp ...

Ottoman Egypt
in the year 1798, causing a furor in
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
. The British then appealed to Selim III to send a letter to Tipu Sultan requesting the
Sultanate of Mysore This article includes a list of successive Muslim state An Islamic state is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state. In the case of its broad associati ...
to halt its state of war against the
British East India Company The East India Company (EIC), also known as the Honourable East India Company (HEIC), East India Trading Company (EITC), the English East India Company or (after 1707) the British East India Company, and informally known as John Company, Com ...
. Selim III then wrote a letter to
Tipu Sultan Tipu Sultan (born Sultan Fateh Ali Sahab Tipu, 01 December 1751 – 4 May 1799), also known as the Tiger of Mysore, was the ruler of the Kingdom of Mysore The Kingdom of Mysore was a realm in southern India South India is a re ...

Tipu Sultan
criticizing the French, and also informed Tipu Sultan that the Ottomans would act as intermediary between the
Sultanate of Mysore This article includes a list of successive Muslim state An Islamic state is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state. In the case of its broad associati ...
and the British. Tipu Sultan wrote twice to Selim III, rejecting the advice of the Ottomans, unfortunately before most of his letters could arrive in Constantinople, the
Fourth Anglo-Mysore War The Fourth Anglo-Mysore War was a conflict in South India South India is a region consisting of the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of co ...
broke out and Tipu Sultan was killed during the
Siege of Seringapatam (1799) The siege of Seringapatam (5 April – 4 May 1799) was the final confrontation of the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War between the British East India Company and the Kingdom of Mysore. The British, with the allied Nizam of Hyderabad and Maratha, a ...
.


Alcohol prohibition

Many of the Ottoman sultans imposed alcohol bans (often with limited success). Despite Selim III's hardline stance on alcohol consumption, and threats to execute Christians and Jews caught selling wine or ''
rakı Rakı or raki (, , , ) is an alcoholic drink made of twice-distilled grapes and aniseed, anise. It is the national drink of Turkey and also popular in other Balkans, Balkan countries as an Apéritif and digestif, apéritif as well as in Kazakhs ...

rakı
'' to Muslims, it proved extremely difficult to curtail alcohol consumption in
Istanbul ) , postal_code_type = Postal code A postal code (also known locally in various English-speaking countries throughout the world as a postcode, post code, PIN or ZIP Code) is a series of letters or digits or both, sometimes ...

Istanbul
, where wines were locally produced and the city had many established wine-houses serving its non-Muslim residents.


The 1806 Edirne Incident

The 1806 Edirne Incident was an armed confrontation between the New Order Troops ('' Nizam-i Djedit)'' of
Ottoman Ottoman is the Turkish spelling of the Arabic masculine given name Uthman (name), Uthman (Arabic: عُثْمان ''‘uthmān''). It may refer to: Governments and dynasties * Ottoman Caliphate, an Islamic caliphate from 1517 to 1924 * Ottoman Empi ...
Sultan Selim III and a coalition of
Balkan The Balkans ( ), also known as the Balkan Peninsula, are a geographic area in southeastern Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geograp ...

Balkan
magnates, ''ayans'', and the region's
Janissary A Janissary ( ota, يڭيچرى ' , meaning "new soldier") was a member of the elite infantry at the Battle of the Somme (July–November 1916) during the First World War Infantry is an army specialization whose military personnel, perso ...
garrisons that occurred in
Thrace Thrace (; el, Θράκη, Thráki; bg, Тракия, Trakiya; tr, Trakya) or Thrake is a geographical and historical region in Southeast Europe, now split among Bulgaria, Greece, and Turkey, which is bounded by the Balkan Mountains to th ...
throughout the summer of 1806. The cause of the incident was Selim III's attempt to expand the New Order's permanent presence into
Rumelia Rumelia ( ota, روم ايلى, Rum İli; tr, Rumeli; el, Ρωμυλία), etymologically "Land of the Romans Roman or Romans usually refers to: *Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder ...
through the establishment of New Order barracks in the region's cities. The ultimate outcome of the confrontation was the retreat of imperial forces back to Istanbul and to Anatolia, constituting a deathblow to Selim III's ambitions of expanding his reformed army, as well as a major blow to his legitimacy. This deteriorated image would result in his deposition the following May.


Downfall and assassination

Selim III was, however, thoroughly under the influence of French ambassador to the Porte Horace Sébastiani, and the fleet was compelled to retire without effecting its purpose. But the anarchy, manifest or latent, existing throughout the provinces proved too great for Selim III to cope with. The Janissaries rose once more in revolt, induced the Sheikh ul-Islam to grant a fetva against the reforms, dethroned and imprisoned Selim III, and placed his cousin Mustafa on the throne, as
Mustafa IV Mustafa IV (; ota, مصطفى رابع ''Muṣṭafā-yi rābi‘''; 8 September 1779 – 16 November 1808) was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1807 to 1808. Early life Mustafa IV was born on 8 September 1779 in Constantinople la, C ...

Mustafa IV
(1807–08), on 29 May 1807. The ayan of , Alemdar Mustafa, a strong partisan of the reforms, collected an army of 40,000 men and marched on Constantinople with the purpose of reinstating Selim III, but he came too late. The ill-fated reforming Sultan had been stabbed in the
seraglio A seraglio ( or ) or serail is the sequestered living quarters used by wives and concubine Concubinage is an interpersonal The concept of interpersonal relationship involves social associations, connections, or affiliations bet ...
by the
Chief Black Eunuch The kizlar agha ( ota, قيزلر اغاسی, tr, kızlar ağası, ), formally the agha of the House of Felicity ( ota, links=no, دار السعاده اغاسي, tr, links=no, Darüssaade Ağası), was the head of the eunuch A eunuch ( ) is ...
and his men. Upon his arrival in the capital, Bairakdar's only resource was to wreak his vengeance on Mustafa IV and to place on the throne
Mahmud II Mahmud II ( ota, محمود ثانى, Mahmud-u s̠ānī, tr, II. Mahmud; 20 July 1785 – 1 July 1839) was the 30th of the from 1808 until his death in 1839. His reign is recognized for the extensive administrative, military, and fiscal ref ...

Mahmud II
(1808–1839), the sole surviving member of the house of Osman. Another version about his murder states that at the time of his deposition, Selim was staying at the Harem. The night of Thursday, 28 July 1808, he was with his favourite wife, Re'fet Kadın, and a lady-in-waiting Pakize Hanım in attendance.
Alemdar Mustafa Pasha Alemdar Mustafa Pasha (also called Bayraktar Mustafa Pasha; died 15 November 1808) was an Ottoman Ottoman is the Turkish spelling of the Arabic masculine given name Uthman (name), Uthman (Arabic: عُثْمان ''‘uthmān''). It may refer to: ...
, a loyalist of Selim, was approaching the city with his army to reinstate Selim. Therefore, Mustafa IV gave orders to murder him and his brother Prince Mahmud. The assassins were apparently a group of men, including the Master of the Wardrobe called Fettah the Georgian, the Treasury steward Ebe Selim, and black eunuch named Nezir Ağa. Selim apparently knew his end was coming when he saw their swords drawn. Pakize Hanım threw herself between them and her lord, she was cut in her hand. Re’fet Kadın started screaming in terror, another slave girl who rushed in fainted when she saw what was about to happen. A struggle ensued and the former sultan was cut down and murdered, his last words apparently being "''Allahu Akbar''" ("God is great"). Re'fet Kadın threw herself on the body but was dragged away. The body was quickly wrapped in a quilt. The assassins moved on to find Prince Mahmud and attempt to murder him too. He was more fortunate though and later ordered the assassins to be executed. Selim III would be the only Ottoman sultan to be killed by the sword. He was buried in
Laleli Mosque The Laleli Mosque ( tr, Laleli Camii, or Tulip Mosque) is an 18th-century Ottoman imperial mosque located in Laleli, Fatih, Laleli, Fatih, Istanbul, Turkey. History The Laleli Mosque was built by Sultan Mustafa III from 1760–1763, designed in the ...
near his father's tomb. File:Laleli Mosque 6584.jpg, Laleli Mosque tomb Sultan Mustafa III and son Selim III


Interest in poetry and arts

A great lover of music, Sultan Selim III was a composer and performer of significant talent. He created fourteen
makam The Turkish makam (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Greece ...

makam
-s (melodic types), three of which are in current use today. Sixty-four compositions by Selim III are known today, some of which are part of the regular repertory of
Turkish classical music Ottoman music ( tr, Osmanlı müziği) or Turkish classical music ( tr, Türk sanat müziği) is the tradition of classical music Classical music generally refers to the formal musical tradition of the Western world The Western w ...
performerance. Aside from composing music, Selim III also performed on the
ney The ''ney'' ( fa, نِی,Ney/نای,Nāy), is an end-blown flute upA shakuhachi showing its ''utaguchi'' (blowing edge) and inlay The end-blown flute (also called an edge-blown flute or rim-blown flute) is a woodwind instrument played by dir ...

ney
(reed flute) and
tanbur The term ''Tanbur'' ( fa, wikt:تنبور, تنبور, ) can refer to various long-necked string instruments originating in Mesopotamia, Southern Asia, Southern or Central Asia. According to the ''New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians'', ...
(long-necked, fretted lute). Selim III's interest in music started in his days as a prince ( shahzade) when he studied under Kırımlı Ahmet Kamil Efendi and Tanburi İzak Efendi. He was especially respectful of Tanburi İzak Efendi, and it is recounted that the Sultan rose in respect when Tanburi İzak Efendi entered the court. As a patron of the arts, Selim III encouraged musicians of his day, including
Dede Efendi DeDe, De De, Dedé or Dédé may refer to: People Nickname or stage name * Dedé (Angolan footballer), born Adérito Waldemar Alves Carvalho * Dedé (footballer, born 1978), Brazilian footballer born Leonardo de Deus Santos * Dedé (footballer, bor ...

Dede Efendi
and Baba Hamparsum. The Hamparsum notation system that Selim commissioned became the dominant notation for Turkish and Armenian music. His name is associated with a school in Classical Turkish Music due to the revival and rebirth of music at his court. Selim III was also interested in western music and in 1797 invited an
opera Opera is a form of theatre Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actor, actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a s ...

opera
troupe for the first opera performance in the Ottoman Empire. Writing under the ''nom de plume'' ″İlhami″, Selim's poetry is collected in a
divan A divan or diwan ( fa, دیوان, ''dīvān'') was a high government ministry in various Islamic states, or its chief official (see ''dewan''). Etymology The word, recorded in English since 1586, meaning "Oriental council of a state", come ...
. Among regular attendees of his court were Şeyh Galib, considered one of the four greatest Ottoman poets. Galib is now considered to have been not only an intimate friend of the Sultan, as they were both quite close in age, but through Galib's poetry you find an overwhelming support for his new military reforms Selim III was a member of the
Mevlevi Order The Mevlevi Order or Mawlawiyya ( tr, Mevlevilik or Mevleviyye; fa, طریقت مولویه) is a Sufism, Sufi order that originated in Konya (a city now in Turkey; formerly capital of the Anatolian Seljuk Sultanate) and which was founded by t ...
of
Sufi Whirling Sufi whirling (or Sufi turning) ( tr, Semazen borrowed from Persian Sama-zan, Sama, meaning ''listening'', from Arabic, and zan, meaning doer, from Persian) is a form of physically active meditation Meditation is a practice where an indivi ...
Dervishes, and entered into the order at the Galata Mevlevihanesi under the name ″Selim Dede". He was a renowned composer, creating many musical compositions, including a Mevlevi ''ayin'', a long and complex liturgical form performed during the semâ (religious ceremonies) of the
Mevlana Jalāl ad-Dīn Mohammad Rūmī ( fa, جلال‌الدین محمد رومی), also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Mohammad Balkhī (), Mevlânâ/Mowlānā (, "our master"), Mevlevî/Mawlawī (, "my master"), and more popularly simply as Rumi (30 S ...

Mevlana
(
Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi-Rumi Jalāl ad-Dīn Mohammad Rūmī ( fa, جلال‌الدین محمد رومی), also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Mohammad Balkhī (), Mevlânâ/Mowlānā (, "our master"), Mevlevî/Mawlawī (, "my master"), and more popularly simply as Rumi (30 S ...
)
Tariqah A tariqa (or ''tariqah''; ar, طريقة ') is a school or order of Sufism Sufism ( ar, ٱلصُّوفِيَّة), also known as Tasawwuf (), is mysticism Mysticism is popularly known as becoming one with God or the Absolute, but may ...
of
Sufi Whirling Sufi whirling (or Sufi turning) ( tr, Semazen borrowed from Persian Sama-zan, Sama, meaning ''listening'', from Arabic, and zan, meaning doer, from Persian) is a form of physically active meditation Meditation is a practice where an indivi ...
Mystics, in
makam The Turkish makam (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Greece ...

makam
''Suzidilara.'' He extended his patronage to , whom he appointed as the court architect in 1795. Melling constructed a number of palaces and other buildings for the Sultan and created engravings of contemporary Constantinople.


Family

;Consorts Selim had seven wives: * Safizar Kadın (died at Topkapı Palace, 30 May 1792, buried in Mustafa III Mausoleum, Laleli Mosque, Istanbul), Senior Consort; * Unnamed Senior Consort ( 1792 — 1858-59); * Zibifer Kadın (died at Beylerbeyi Palace, 30 January 1817, buried in Selimiye Mosque, Üsküdar, Istanbul), Second Consort; * Tabısafa Kadın (died at Fındıklı Palace, 15 March 1855, buried in Mustafa III Mausoleum, Laleli Mosque, Istanbul), Third Consort; * Refet Kadın (died at Beșiktaș Palace, 22 October 1867, buried in Mihrişah Sultan Mausoleum, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul), Fourth Consort; * Nuruşems Kadın (died at Kuruçeșme Palace, May 1826, buried in Mustafa III Mausoleum, Laleli Mosque, Istanbul), Fifth Consort; * Hüsnümah Kadın (died 1814, buried in Mustafa III Mausoleum, Laleli Mosque, Istanbul), Sixth Consort;


See also

*
Ottoman military reform efforts Ottoman military reforms began in the late 18th century. Reforms of Selim III When Selim III Selim III ( ota, سليم ثالث ''Selim-i sâlis'') (24 December 1761 – 28 July 1808) was the Sultan Sultan (; ar, سلطان ', ) ...
* Nizam-i Jedid *
Kabakçı Mustafa Kabakçı Mustafa (1770?-1808) was a rebel leader who caused the delay of Ottoman Empire, Ottoman reformation in the early 19th century. Yamaks and Kabakçı Yamaks were a special class of soldiers who were responsible in defending Bosphorous aga ...
* Kuguzade Suleyman Pasha


Ancestry


Notes


Bibliography

*Basaran, Betul, Selim III, Social Control and Policing in Istanbul at the End of the Eighteenth Century: Between Crisis and Order, Leiden: Brill, 2014 *Malecka, Anna. "The mystery of the Nur al-Ayn diamond", in: ''Gems and Jewellery'', August/September 2014, pp. 20–22. * * Shaw, Stanford Jay. ''Between old and new: the Ottoman Empire under Sultan Selim III, 1789-1807'' (Harvard University Press, 1971) * Tuncay Zorlu, ''Sultan Selim III and the Modernisation of the Ottoman Navy'' (London, I.B. Tauris, 2011).


References

*


External links

{{DEFAULTSORT:Selim Iii 1761 births 1808 deaths Murder in 1808 18th-century Ottoman sultans 19th-century Ottoman sultans Assassinated caliphs 19th-century murdered monarchs Turkish classical composers Turkish musicians Executed people of the Ottoman Empire 19th-century executions by the Ottoman Empire Composers of Ottoman classical music Composers of Turkish makam music Turks of the Ottoman Empire Ottoman dynasty Assassinated royalty Leaders ousted by a coup The Sultan of Two Lands and the Khan of Two Seas