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THE HISTORY OF THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE - History documentary
The 14 Best Books on the Ottoman Empire of 2019
T he last thing the people of the Ottoman empire needed in autumn was another war. In the six years leading up to that calamitous year they had seen a sultan deposed and their immense and immensely inefficient army battered. In several bruising wars, they had ceded Libya to Italy and all their European territories — including what is now Bulgaria, large chunks of Greece, Bosnia, Serbia and Albania — to independence. Now their Young Turk leaders were siding with Germany, because the Kaiser looked most likely to help them regain some of that lost territory, or at least avoid the dismantlement of the empire. The consequences of that decision — the great war that shaped the Middle East, the conflict that made the war global — form the grand tale that Eugene Rogan tells in his latest book. Readers of his previous work, The Arabs , will know how comfortably he handles multiple themes, ambitious narratives and a crowd of characters. Writing about the collapse of an empire that, in , still included all of what is now Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt demands those skills, and more.
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. Despite spanning three continents and over half a millenia, the Ottoman Empire has been relatively neglected by lovers of history, and some of the recent popular texts owe more to fiction than academic study. This is unfortunate, because the Ottoman Empire has an impressive and fascinating past, often closely tied to European affairs. This is the sort of book you dream of being able to put number one on a list: a single volume history of verve and skill.