In the Ottoman Empire, royal women were to be neither seen nor heard - after giving birth to the Sultan's child, they were supposed to recede into the background, focused on raising that potential heir. And, yet, in the 1500s, a young concubine captured the heart of one of the greatest leaders of all history. By doing so, she ushered in a period known as the Sultanate of Women. And we don't even know her real name. In this episode, join Elizabeth as she examines the history of the "Joyful One."
Rayne Allinson, "Letters Full of Marvels: Sultan Murād III of the Ottoman Empire, 1579–1595" in A Monarchy of Letters, Palgrave Macmillan (2012): 131-150.
Colin Imber, The Ottoman Empire, 1300-1650: the Structure of Power, Macmillan International Higher Education, (2019).
Leslie Peirce, Empress of the East: How a European Slave Girl became Queen of the Ottoman Empire, Hachette, (2017).
Leslie Peirce, The Imperial Harem: Women and Sovereignty in the Ottoman Empire, Oxford University Press, (1993).
Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod (www.incompetech.com)