Empress of the East

Empress of the East

How A European Slave Girl Became Queen of the Ottoman Empire

Book - 2017
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"Peirce tells the ... story of a Christian slave girl, Roxelana, who was abducted by warriors at age twelve from her Ruthenian homeland, and brought to the harem of Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent in Constantinople. Suleiman became besotted with her, and forsook all other mistresses. Then, in an unprecedented step, he made her the first and only queen in the Ottoman court. Although shrouded in scandal, the canny and sophisticated Roxelana became a shrewd diplomat and administrator, who helped Suleyman keep pace with a changing world in which women--from Queen Elizabeth to Catherine de Medici--increasingly held the reins of power"-- Provided by publisher
Publisher: New York : Basic Books, 2017
ISBN: 9780465032518
Branch Call Number: BIO Hurrem
Characteristics: vii, 359 pages : illustrations, map, genealogical table


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Oct 23, 2017

High commendations to Ms. Peirce on both the rigor of her scholarship and her ability to bring this exotic woman to life. It is tempting to make assumptions about a subject's thoughts, emotions, and motivations, a trap into which Ms. Peirce never falls. Her speculations are always clearly noted as such, and are firmly based on the source material. This is a terrifically readable book about a very singular woman as well as being the source of considerable information about the inner workings of the Ottoman Empire. Very highly recommended.


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