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Issue 38, 2007

The Big Bursa Issue

£15.00 / $19.06 / €17.77
($/€ approx)

The birthplace of the Ottoman Empire. Beauty and the Beast: Arabians and Thoroughbreds. Ahmed Vefik Pasha, saviour of monuments. Kütahya ceramics; Anatolian flowers; the Yıldız Palace albums; the Turkic-speaking peoples; the great rakı tasting. Plus: feast food – freshly baked çörek


  • The Patriot

    As Bursa lay in ruins after the earthquake of 1855, the man the Sultan sent to rescue the city was Ahmed Vefik Pasha. A brilliant man of letters, champion of Ottoman causes and very undiplomatic diplomat, he was to leave an indelible mark on Turkish culture. David Barchard reinstates a wayward hero.

  • What is a Turk?

    Christian Tyler, author of Wild West China, The Taming of Xinjiang, assesses Ergun Çağatay’s extraordinary volume of photographs of the wider Turkic world

  • Feast Food

    The çörek is full of symbolism, and its association with religious festivals reflects earlier pagan customs. All sorts of buns, loaves and çörek are eaten at Sabantoy, the colourful June festival celebrated by the Altay, Çuvaş, Tatar and Başkurt peoples of Central Asia.
    More cookery features

  • The Birthplace of Empire

    Heath W Lowry, in the first of a series of articles this issue, pays tribute to the city that gave the Ottoman state its first capital.

  • Whistlestop Bursa: A day out on the tiles

    John Carswell on the city that married the courtly arts of Asia to the princely aspirations of Renaissance Europe. Photographs by Jürgen Frank

  • The Beauty of the Beast

    No day passes in Turkey when horses are not racing – and when it comes to prize money the country now leads the field. Donna Landry visits Karacabey, the national stud near Bursa, with the Ottoman historian Caroline Finkel and discovers an equestrian paradise

Inside the issue


  1. Santa: A Life by Jeremy Seal. Reviewed by Robert Ousterhout [extract available online]
  2. The Cambridge History of Turkey, Vol 3 The Later Ottoman Empire, 1603–1839, edited by Suraiya N Faroqhi [available online]
  3. Turkey from Empire to Revolutionary Republic, by Sina Akşin. Reviewed by David Barchard [available online]

Food and Drink

  1. Feast Food
    Biscuits and buns for high days and holy days, by Berrin Torolsan
  2. Into the Lion's Den
    Kevin Gould picks the best new rakı

Travel Tales

  1. Rocks and Roses
    Min Hogg is beguiled by Cappadocia


  1. Private View, Andrew Finkel's Turkish newsround
  2. Village Voices, Azize Ethem's Iznik diary
  3. Restaurants
    Tales from the top tables
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