Ottoman corsairs in the Central Mediterranean and the slave trade in the 16th century

Date
2021-08
Advisor
Ergenç, Özer
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Bilkent University
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English
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Thesis
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Abstract

This thesis aims to analyze the Ottoman corsairs and their role in the slave trade in the 16th century Mediterranean, and it concentrates on the corsair activity around the central Mediterranean during Suleiman I's reign. The historiography chiefly emphasizes the corsairs as an apparatus, a war-machine of the Imperial Navy (Donanma-yı Hümâyûn) against the Habsburg Empire. Moreover, scholars have given their primary attention to the political rivalry between the Habsburg and the Ottoman households, and the corsair concept lacks a social and economic consideration. Therefore, this study predominantly reevaluates this approach by focusing on the Ottoman corsairs' social and economic aspects, such as the slave trade carried out for the Sublime Porte. The research investigates the Ottoman-Venetian disputes due to the corsair activities through archival documents. Southern Italy and Sicily, under Habsburg rule, were open to direct threats throughout the constant wars between Spain, France, and the Ottoman Empire, and many people were reduced to slavery and sold in slave markets. Although the corsair activity around the Iberian-peninsula and the North Africa have been examined, the Adriatic coast should need more recognition by the researchers.

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Corsairing, Mediterranean, Slavery, The Ottoman Empire, Hayreddin Barbarossa
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Published Version (Please cite this version)