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with my other materials. The whole work is beautifully transcribed ; and the name of Mohammed in particular, is adorned with a garland of tulips and carnations, painted in the brightest colours.
In the same collection with the preceding work*, is An History of the Othmans, from the founder of that race, to Bayazid the Second : it is finely preserved, and written in an easy style. The prefatory chapter contains a just encomium of the first Turkish sultans, whose eminent abilities were a principal cause of the greatness of their empire.
There is another work among Golius's manuscripts t, which has been extremely useful to me. It is a register of all the officers of state, the servants of the court, and the Turkish forces, both by land and sea, with the daily and yearly expences of supporting them, as they were established in the reign of Ahmed the First, at the opening of the last century: the second part contains an enumeration of all the Othman subjects in Europe and Asia, who hold their estates by a military tenure; with the exact number of soldiers that each province and district can produce. As this register was copied from an original in the imperial treasury, there can be no doubt of its authenticity. But the best modern histories of the Turks are those printed by Ibrahim, in the middle of the present century, which, together with several other fruits of that printer’s industry, were brought from Constantinople, by a late excellent ambas
* No. 313. Most of the manuscripts in this valuable collection of Marsh, belonged to the very learned Golius, who has written notes in the margins with a black pencil.
+ Marsh. 454. Golius has written the following title to this book : Imperii Osmanici I Canon, continens quæ et quibus stipendia soluta fuerint, iin perante Aumede: unde patet quæ sit imperii illius potentia, Turcice, ex autographo imperiali descriptum.
sador, and presented to the Royal Society, in whose library they are preserved.
The most agreeable of them is called by the florid title of Gulsheni Kholafa*, or the Rose-garden of the Califs, and comprises, in a thin volume in folio, a very elegant history of the Turkish nation, from the Califs of the house of Abbas, one of whom imprudently established a militia of young Turks, to the year of Christ 1717, when Ahmed the Second sat on the Othman throne.
* In Turkish látó
The author of this fine work was
Nazmi Zada Efendi, who'
seems to have been in high favour with the Ulema, or Lawyers and Ecclesiastics of his age. The Mufti, and the two Chief Justices of Asia and Europe, wrote the most profuse encomiums of it, which are prefixed to the book. That of the Mufti has something so ridiculously bombast in it, that the reader will perhaps be pleased to see it literally translated, as it will give himn an idea of the flowery style of the Asiatics :
بو مجلد شریف رجوع لطيف مر کر و قايع سابقه و باعث حوادث لاحقه او لوب ينابيع عباراتندرن جریان ایران زلال معاني ومرارع تعبیرا تندن سر بر آورده اولان ازبار مباني مجاهدان دین و دولتک آب روي ومرابطان جاد اندیشه نک کل خوشبویي اولغله لایق انظار ذوي الاعتبار وسزاوار مطالعه اولي الأبصار اولشدر
As this noble volume and elegant compilation records past events, and lays open the causes of succeeding transactions ; the pure stream of sense, that flows from the springs of its expressions, and the flowers of persp cuity, that arise from the borders of its rhetoric, together with the splendour of those chiefs, who foughtfor the faith and the empire, and the fragrant roses of the faune of those valiant heroes, are worthy of the attention of all intelligent men, and deserve the inspection of the discerning reader.
The next is an History of the Turkish Empire, from the year 1591, by Naima* ; it is printed in two large volumes, and the continuation of it by Rashed Efendi † fills two more; the fifth volume was added by another hand, and brings it down to 1728, two years before the rebellion, and the deposition of Sultan Ahmed. This excellent work contains a narrative of all the memorable events that happened in the dominions of the Sultan, for a period of above an hundred and thirty years ; the embassies from all foreign powers, among whom the English are mentioned with regard ; the reigns of eleven Othman emperors, from the death of Morád III. to the last great sedition at Constantinople ; the lives and characters of the most eminent visiers, and learned men, who flourished in those reigns; together with a view of the affairs of Asia, and even of Europe, according to the notion that the Turks have of them ; which may serve to show how far their intelligence reaches, and in what light they consider the genius, manners, and influence of the Christian world ; we must not be disgusted at their false and absurd opinions concerning us ; since the less they know of our counsels and interests, and even the less respect they have for us, the greater advantage we shall obtain in our transactions with them; and the less they are apprised of our real force, the fewer provisions will they have made against it, whenever we shall chuse to exert it. For my part, I cannot help thinking, that a juster notion of the government, laws, and policy of the Turks, may be formed by an attentive perusal of Naima's History, than can be acquired from all the relations of our European travellers ; and that a single volume of it, accurately translated, would be more useful to us, than the vast collections of Rycaut and Knolles, to which, however, I readily allow the praise that they deserve.
نعيها In Turkish *
راشد افنداي *
It may reasonably be supposed, that having drawn my materials from these plentiful sources, I mean to present the public with a complete history of the Turks; but I reflected, that among the numerous events which must be recorded in the general history of any nation, there are very few which seem capable of yielding either pleasure or instruction to a judicious reader, who desires to be acquainted with past transactions, not because they have happened, but because he hopes to derive from them some useful lesson, for the conduct of his life. It seemed, therefore, more respectful to the public, and it was far more agreeable to my own irclination, to trace out, in the form of an essay, the great outlines only of the Turkish history, leaving all its minuter parts to be coloured by some abler pencil, and perhaps the most interesting of them to be filled up by my rough crayon, as some future occasion, or greater leisure may invite me. Whatever theu be the fate of my performance, I have a claim in one instance to the indulgence of my reader, by having spared him the trouble of running over all the idle fables, and even the dull truths, with which my originals abound, and which I have suppressed in great number; since both of them are, in my opinion, highly disgraceful to an historical piece, in which nothing should be written that is fabulous, nor any thing, how true soever it may be, but what deserves to be read*.
As to the nature of my piece, though I have intitled it an Essay ' on the History of the Turks; yet, from the age of Elizabeth to the present century, the history of our Trade to the Levant is interwoven with it, and a few hints are respectfully offered for its improvement; an object of the highest importance to the whole nation. The part which relates to the Causes of the rise and decline of the
* Three pages of the original are here omitted, as it appears by a manuscript note, that it was intended to alter them.
Turkish Empire was written after the model of M. de Montesquieu's Considerations on the greatness of the Romans ; nor am I under any apprehension of being censured for imitating so excellent a pattern, to which I may justly apply the words of Cicero :-“ De“ mosthenem imitemur. O Dii boni ! quid ergo nos aliud agimus, “ aut quid aliud optamus ? at non assequimur.”