Research Article


DOI :10.26650/iutd.202203   IUP :10.26650/iutd.202203    Full Text (PDF)

The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto

İdris Bostan

The Battle of Lepanto (1571) is the most significant naval war that took place in the Mediterranean. The Ottoman fleet was almost destroyed, with many ships sinking or being seized by the fleet of the Crusaders which was gathered in Europe following the Ottoman conquest of Cyprus (1570-71). Following the Ottoman conquest of Cyprus in 1570-71, the European Crusaders allied, and the Ottoman fleet was almost completely destroyed, with many ships sinking and others captured by the Crusader fleet. To recover from the defeat, the Ottoman state decided to build a new imperial navy in the Imperial Shipyard as well as on the Black Sea’s Anatolian and Rumelian coasts. The expenses of such a huge enterprise were mainly covered by the state treasury but statesmen, led by the sultan himself, also lend support. In addition, people of substance were encouraged to help the state in supplying the provision and ammunition for the crew as well as the needs of the military troops. In this regard, two fatwas issued by Shaikhu’l-Islam Ebussuûd were effective. Pertev Pasha’s grants and promotions were also revoked after another fatwa declared that those fleeing the battle would perish whether they died or survived. The impact of three fatwas issued by Ebussuûd regarding the Siege of Cyprus and the Battle of Lepanto is examined in this article.

DOI :10.26650/iutd.202203   IUP :10.26650/iutd.202203    Full Text (PDF)

Fetvanın Osmanlı Yönetimi ve Toplum Üzerindeki Etkisi: Ebussuûd Efendi’nin Kıbrıs ve İnebahtı Fetvaları

İdris Bostan

İnebahtı Deniz Savaşı (1571) Akdeniz tarihinde meydana gelen en önemli donanmalar savaşıdır. Kıbrıs’ın Osmanlılar tarafından fethi (1570-71) üzerine Avrupa’da kurulan Haçlı ittifakının donanmaları karşısında Osmanlı donanması adeta imha olmuş, gemilerin çoğu batmış, bazılarına el konmuştu. Bu yenilgiyi telafi maksadıyla başta Tersâne-i Âmire olmak üzere Karadeniz’in Anadolu ve Rumeli kıyılarında yeni bir imparatorluk donanması kurmayı kararlaştıran Osmanlı yönetimi, donanma yapım masraflarını esas itibariyle devlet hazinesinden karşılamışsa da başta padişah olmak üzere devlet adamları da gemi yapımı için yardımcı olmuşlardı. Bunun dışında gemi mürettebatının ihtiyacı olan malzeme ve mühimmat ile askerlerin ihtiyaçlarını karşılamak üzere devlete yardımcı olmak için zenginler teşvik edilmiş, Şeyhülislâm Ebussuûd Efendi’nin iki fetvası bu konuda etkili olmuştu. Ayrıca askerlerden savaştan kaçarken ölen veya kurtulanların helak olacaklarına dair başka bir fetvası ile de Pertev Paşa’nın yaptığı tevcih ve terakkilerin tamamı iptal edildi. Bu yazıda Ebussuûd Efendi’nin Kıbrıs seferi fetvası ile İnebahtı hakkındaki üç fetvası savaşlar üzerindeki etkileri bakımından incelenecektir.


EXTENDED ABSTRACT


One of the two most important naval battles in the history of the Mediterranean is Lepanto. The Ottomans, who were victorious over the Allied European naval powers in Preveza (1538), were defeated in Lepanto (1571). Following Preveza, the Ottoman expansion in the Mediterranean was gradual, with several expeditions organized to further consolidate its position in North Africa and the Mediterranean islands. Djerba was captured from Spain at the end of these expeditions (1560), but the Ottoman attempt to capture Malta failed (1565), despite the Ottomans’ determined effort. In this period, the Ottomans moderately took France under their protection, just like Venice, by granting ahidnâmes and establishing amicable relations. Since the Ottomans’ greatest struggle in the Mediterranean was often with Spain, granting ahidnâmes to France and Venice left Spain largely isolated.

Because Cyprus was a Venetian Island, the Ottomans, who were tasked with ensuring the security of pilgrimage and trade routes in the Eastern Mediterranean, did not intervene after the conquest of Egypt (1517). However, they were disturbed by the situation because the island had become a base for Christian pirate activities. A campaign to Cyprus was decided upon by a fatwa issued by Shaykh al-Islām Ebussuûd Efendi and a decision made by the Imperial Council. As diplomatic contacts with Venice did not yield any results, the preparations which had already started, gained more speed. Armies from Rumelia and Anatolia were prepared for this campaign, and a large navy consisting of 350–400 ships sailed from three different points. Lala Mustafa Pasha, the commander-in-chief, lead this navy, with commanders including Piyale Pasha, Murad Reis, the chief of levends, and Grand Admiral Muezzinzade Ali Pasha. Eventually, with the surrender of Nicosia on September 9, 1570, and then Famagusta on August 1, 1571, the endmost outpost of the Catholic Christian World in the Eastern Mediterranean came under Ottoman rule.

The Ottoman expedition to Cyprus (1570-71) resulted in the formation of a Crusader alliance in Europe, which included states such as the Papacy, Spain, and Venice. The goal was to either retake Cyprus from the Ottomans or seize another Ottoman territory in exchange.

To prevent this alliance from organizing an operation toward Cyprus, the Ottomans set sail to the Mediterranean on May 4, 1571, under Pertev Pasha, the commander-in-chief. Later, navy ships under important figures such as Grand Admiral Muezzinzade Ali Pasha, Algerian governor Uluç Ali Pasha, Hayreddin Pashazade Hasan Pasha, Cafer Pasha, and fleets of volunteer levend chiefs, joined Pertev Pasha. The Ottoman fleet, which went as far as Dubrovnik by plundering the Venetian islands in the Aegean and Mediterranean, returned from that area and anchored in the port of Lepanto.

On October 7, 1571, in the war that took place outside the Gulf of Lepanto near the island of Oxeia, which the Ottomans called Beydemir, the Ottoman navy was almost destroyed and most of the ships were either sunk or captured. The Ottomans lost not only ships but also their highest-ranking commanders, galley chiefs, bannermen, experienced sailors, and crews in the Battle of Lepanto. In two ways, this result was widely discussed in the Ottoman capital and was hotly debated by historians of the time. There had to be an explanation for the heavy loss suffered immediately following a victory like Cyprus, and several explanations were advanced. Some criticized war tactics and strategy by emphasizing flaws. Others interpreted the defeat as a punishment for the deterioration of moral values and non-compliance with the given covenants.

The defeat of Lepanto caused grief, but Sultan Selim II and the grand vizier Sokullu Mehmed Pasha decided to build a new navy the day after they received the news of the defeat. Shaykh al-Islām Ebussuûd Efendi also paved the way for new activities to be carried out with moral encouragements and with his fatwas by making some decisions based on the results of the war. One of these fatwas was about those who fought in the Battle of Lepanto, and two of them were about meeting the needs of the soldiers who would serve in the navies.

In his fatwa on the soldiers of Lepanto, he stated that those who died in the battle were martyrs and that those who survived would be rewarded in Allah’s presence. Those who flee or drown while fleeing, on the other hand, will be cursed by the creator. The advocacy and conferment made by Pertev Pasha, the commander-in-chief, about all members of the navy after the war were canceled as a requirement of this fatwa. Orders were issued to other commanders, and it was requested that no one be conferred.

Shaykh al-Islām Ebussuûd Efendi contributed to the preparations after Lepanto by giving two fatwas on the importance of jihad with wealth and giving zakat for this purpose to meet the needs of the ghazis who will fight in the navy. According to him, it was the responsibility of wealthy Muslims to save money for the military equipment and ammunition required by the sea warriors who would serve on the ships. Just as the companions of the prophet Muhammed mobilized their financial resources in the early days of Islam to meet the needs of those who went to war, wealthy Muslims of the time should do the same. Besides, he issued a fatwa about zakat. According to this fatwa, he said that rich Muslims can give the zakat of that year together with their unpaid zakat and the zakat they will give in the following years. This situation also shows the gravity of the current conditions.

In this article, the fatwas issued by Ebussuûd Efendi about the Cyprus Campaign, the Battle of Lepanto, and the effects of these fatwas on the wars will be examined. 


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APA

Bostan, İ. (2022). The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto. Turkish Journal of History, 0(76), 35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


AMA

Bostan İ. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto. Turkish Journal of History. 2022;0(76):35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


ABNT

Bostan, İ. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto. Turkish Journal of History, [Publisher Location], v. 0, n. 76, p. 35-62, 2022.


Chicago: Author-Date Style

Bostan, İdris,. 2022. “The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto.” Turkish Journal of History 0, no. 76: 35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


Chicago: Humanities Style

Bostan, İdris,. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto.” Turkish Journal of History 0, no. 76 (Feb. 2023): 35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


Harvard: Australian Style

Bostan, İ 2022, 'The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto', Turkish Journal of History, vol. 0, no. 76, pp. 35-62, viewed 4 Feb. 2023, https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


Harvard: Author-Date Style

Bostan, İ. (2022) ‘The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto’, Turkish Journal of History, 0(76), pp. 35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203 (4 Feb. 2023).


MLA

Bostan, İdris,. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto.” Turkish Journal of History, vol. 0, no. 76, 2022, pp. 35-62. [Database Container], https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203


Vancouver

Bostan İ. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto. Turkish Journal of History [Internet]. 4 Feb. 2023 [cited 4 Feb. 2023];0(76):35-62. Available from: https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203 doi: 10.26650/iutd.202203


ISNAD

Bostan, İdris. The Influence of Fatwa on Ottoman Administration and Society: Ebussuûd Efendi’s Fatwas Regarding Cyprus and Lepanto”. Turkish Journal of History 0/76 (Feb. 2023): 35-62. https://doi.org/10.26650/iutd.202203



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Submitted13.12.2021
Accepted23.01.2022
Published Online16.03.2022

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