The enthralling story of a dynamic empire whose impact is felt to this day
The Ottoman chronicles recount that the first sultan, Osman, dreamt of the dynasty he would found - a tree, fully-formed, emerged from his navel, symbolising the vigour of his successors and the extent of their domains.
This is the first book to tell the full story of the Ottoman dynasty that for six centuries held sway over territories stretching, at their greatest, from Hungary to the Persian Gulf, and from North Africa to the Caucasus.
Understanding the realization of Osman's vision is essential for anyone who seeks to understand the modern world.
An absorbing, monumental story . . . a reliable, authoritative account . . . a balanced assessment of the Ottomans . . . a marvellous achievement, which deserves to provoke widespread debate - Jerry Brotton, BBC History magazine
A Turkish delight - Metro (London)
Splendidly written . . . Finkel's intimacy with the material makes this the most authoritative narrative history of the empire yet published . . . Detailed . . . Her narrative focuses on the dynamics of the imperial story . . . lively analysis - Jason Goodwin, Literary Review
History written with a dynamic, modern feel and penetrating gaze - Good Book Guide
Instructive . . . A fine single-volume account of a long and at times complicated period . . . Finkel clearly loves her subject - The Tablet
The freshness of Finkel's history [is] striking. The secret, apart from an irresistible narrative style, is a generous openness to every aspect of Ottoman life and culture . . . What has often come across as an impossibly exotic procession of Viziers, Beys and Pashas is here brought vividly home to the reader - Michael Kerrigan, The Scotsman
Excellent - The Times
Caroline Finkel has lived in Istanbul for many years and travelled widely in Turkey and the former Ottoman lands. She has a doctorate in Ottoman history from the School of Oriental and African Studies, has published numerous articles and learnt Hungarian, Arabic and Persian, in addition to Ottoman and modern Turkish.