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Publisher's Summary

A major new history of the 600-year dynasty that connected East to West as never before.

The Ottoman Empire has long been depicted as the Islamic Asian antithesis of the Christian European West. But the reality was starkly different: the Ottomans' multiethnic, multilingual, and multireligious domain reached deep into Europe's heart. In their breadth and versatility, the Ottoman rulers saw themselves as the new Romans. 

Recounting the Ottomans' remarkable rise from a frontier principality to a world empire, Marc David Baer traces their debts to their Turkish, Mongolian, Islamic and Byzantine heritage, how they used both religious toleration and conversion to integrate conquered peoples, and how, in the 19th century, they embraced exclusivity, leading to ethnic cleansing, genocide and the dynasty's demise after the First World War. Upending Western concepts of the Renaissance, the Age of Exploration, the Reformation, this account challenges our understandings of sexuality, orientalism and genocide. 

Radically retelling their remarkable story, The Ottomans is a magisterial portrait of a dynastic power and the first to truly capture its cross-fertilisation between East and West.

©2021 Marc David Baer (P)2021 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Critic Reviews

"A book as sweeping, colorful, and rich in extraordinary characters as the empire which it describes." (Tom Holland)

What listeners say about The Ottomans

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  • iain ward
  • 12-04-21

muddled and tangential

the potential of this book is swallowed by the authors repeatedly wandering off into fields which are not really ottoman history but may more accurately be described as a history of the Jewish people in the ottoman empire. interesting but not what I was looking for.

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  • Matt
  • 11-09-21

Brilliant

A fascinating story with a terrible ending, highly recommended for anyone interested in the ottomans, really shows how they are a part of European history.