A Review About the Effect of the Ottoman Empire on the Constitutional Monarchy of Iran

Author : Osman KARACAN
Number of pages : 1413-1447


When the studies on the Ottoman reforms are examined, it is seen that it is evaluated like the Ottoman Empire is in a more passive and affected position in its relations with the West. But this is not exactly the case. Despite the West's definition of ''sick man'', Ottoman Empire tried to shape the history with great dynamism. Transferring the values of the developed and advanced Western countries, the Ottomans fused these values with their own values and created a new form. The Ottomans, who have always maintained their identity in the face of history, have changed, transformed and affected the states, societies and cultures around it. One of the states in which the Ottoman Empire was influential in its change was its neighbor; Iran. The Ottoman Empire, which had a great influence on the modernization of Iran, which underwent a modernization process with the same time as the Ottoman Empire, had an undeniable influence on the Iranian constitutionalism. Benefiting the modernization experience of the Ottoman Empire during the 19th century, it is possible to see this effect to a some extent in all reform attemts carried out by Iran. Especially the Iranian statesmen and politicians who came to the Ottomans from the second half of the 19th century and were influenced by the innovational works in the Ottoman Empire supported the adoptation of the Ottoman's experience in innovation. In addition to the Iranian statesmen and politicians in favor of innovation, many Iranian intellectuals, scholars, traders and laborer who lived in the Ottoman cities, especially in Istanbul, experienced that the only salvation for Iran was to modernize and tried to transfer the Ottoman ways to Iran. Istanbul, where many Parsi newspapers, books, treatises, poems, articles were published and reached to the place where the Iranians lived, was the heart of Iranian modernization supporters. During the 19th century, the Ottoman Empire, which had influenced Iran in administrative, military, political and social fields, hada important impact on Iranian constitutional monarchy. In this process many concepts such as constitutional monarchy, kanun-ı esasi, government of law, and parliament were barrowed from the Ottoman Empire and were discussed. The Ottoman Empire, which was influential in the formation process of the Iraninan constitutionalism idea, was also effective in the decleration of the constitutional monarchy and later in the civil war. Istanbul, which was like a center where the Iraninan intellectuals gathered before the declaration of the constitutional monarchy, became the headquarters of the Iranian intellectuals in the civil war following the bombing of the Meclis-i Mebusan(parliament). Additionally, Encümen-i Saadet's, which operated in Istanbul and occasionally supported by the Ottoman rulers, efforts to regain the Iranian constitutional monarchy was remarkable. In this context, the relationship that Encümen-i Saadet established with the Ottoman elites and the political and ideological struggles of the Iraninan intellectuals are important dynamics. On the other hand, while the Ottoman state diplomats Şemseddin Bey and Cemil Said Bey made intensive efforts to protect the constitutionalism, the Ottoman army provided support to the constitutionalists in the civil war. In our study, the contribution of the Ottoman Empire as a whole to the formation process of the Iranian constitutionalism is tried to be put forth from the new Ottomans to the Young Turks and the diplomats of the Ottoman State in Tehran.


Ottoman State, Iran, Iranian Constitutional Monarchy, Constitutional Monarchy.


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