Identifying Resources in Ottoman Studies

By William M. Blair

This guide to resources for Ottoman Studies is a work in progress. New material is being added on an irregular basis as time and the idiosyncratic interests of its author permit. The nature of such a work means that it becomes dated upon being written down. If anyone has suggestions, updates, criticisms, or corrections about any content please write the author at [email protected]

Bibliographies and Indexes

There are a number of bibliographical aids for the student of Ottoman studies, some general in nature, many specialized. Here I would like to list and describe those general ones which I have found most useful over the years.

The most important work is the Türkologischer Anzeiger/Turkology Annual. Appearing originally as a supplement to the Wiener Zeitschrift für die Kunde des Morgenlandes in 1975, this annual has the most comprehensive listing of books, articles, and reviews in the field of Turkology. The most recent issue, no. 29, was published in 2014. The first 26 issues are now searchable online at However, sample searches suggest that the search function is extremely limited. There are no abstracts to increase the potential keywords; while one can search by author, other keyword searches depend on the very limited number of words found in the title. A keyword search for bahriye will not locate entries in English, German, French, etc.—or even Turkish—which do not contain bahriye but which may contain instead other relevant keywords such as donanma, kapudan-ı derya, marine, navy, etc. There is a subject search, but the subjects tend to be so broad as to be almost meaningless. For example, there is no subject specifically concerning the Ottoman navy. The relevant subject heading is “military and warfare,” which contains 401 entries. This breaks down to an average of just 15 entries per year on military and warfare topics, which seems to be low. Under the heading “Heer- und Kriegswesen” (Military Affairs) in the printed edition for volumes 3–24, i.e., four fewer issues than the online version, there are 461 entries (including cross references) or an average of 21 per issue. Clearly, while the online version is more convenient to use, it does not replace the paper version in terms of completeness and effectiveness in searching. Princeton University Library (PUL) call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z2835.T84.

The Türkologischer Anzeiger complements the massive bibliography by Hans-Jürgen Kornrumpf, Osmanische Bibliographie mit besonderer Berücksichtigung der Türkei in Europa (Leiden/Köln: E. J. Brill, 1973). The impetus for producing this 1,378-page bibliography unmatched in its comprehensiveness was that Index Islamicus, the basic index to articles (more recently also to books) in the field of Middle Eastern/Islamic studies, to a great extent neglected Ottoman studies and publications in Turkish. PUL call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z2831.K67.

Index Islamicus, as mentioned above, is the basic bibliographical resource for Middle Eastern/Islamic studies. The first volume appeared in 1958 and covers publications from the years 1906–1955. Supplements—multi-year compilations, annuals, and quarterly issues—bring the bibliographic record up to the current year. Index Islamicus now does a much better job of covering Ottoman and Republican Turkish topics. There is also an online version available through the Princeton University Library Web site. While better than the Türkologischer Anzeiger online version in terms of interface, it still has the problems that most online bibliographies have, that is, results depend upon the keywords selected by the user. In a printed bibliography, an editor or editorial board organizes the entries so that related entries may be found together, regardless of language of entry or choice of title words. In online databases the “organization” is largely determined by the searcher. Index Islamicus does have a much better subject searching capability, which greatly enhances it value, but does not include abstracts of the books and articles listed. PUL call numbers: (NEC) Z3013.xL7; (NEC) Z3013.xL71; Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z3013.xL71; Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z3013.xL72; Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z3013.Q34. Online version available through library Web site.

W. H. Behn has prepared two supplements to Index Islamicus: Index Islamicus, 1665–1905: A Bibliography of Articles on Islamic Subjects in Periodicals and Other Collective Publications (Millersville, PA: Adıyok, 1989) and Index Islamicus, Supplement, 16651980: A Bibliography of Articles on Islamic Subjects in Periodicals and Other Collective Publications (Millersville, PA: Adıyok, 1995–1996). As far as I know, the entries in these titles are not included in the online version of Index Islamicus. PUL call numbers: (Recap) Z7835.M6 B43 1989 and Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z3013.L69; (Recap) Z7835.M6 B435 1995 and Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z7835.M6 B435 1995.

A new periodical publication that promises to be of major interest to Ottomanists is Türkiye Araştırmaları Literatür Dergisi (2003–). Each issue is subject-based and contains state-of-the-field articles with bibliography and/or substantial notes filled with citations. Seventeen issues have appeared covering the following subjects: Türk İktisat Tarihi; Türk Siyaset Tarihi - Tanzimat'a Kadar; Türk Siyaset Tarihi - Tanzimat'tan Günümüze; Türk Bilim Tarihi; Türk Hukuk Tarihi; Türk Şehir Tarihi; Yeni Türk Edebiyatı Tarihi I; Yeni Türk Edebiyatı Tarihi II; Eski Türk Edebiyatı Tarihi I; Eski Türk Edebiyatı Tarihi II; Türk Sosyoloji Tarihi; Türk Eğitim Tarihi; Türk Mimarlık Tarihi; Türk Sanat Tarihi; Dünyada Türk Tarihçiliği; İstanbul Tarihi; and Türk Felsefe Tarihi. The articles may cover broad aspects of a subject or be highly focused on a narrow topic in the field. Articles range from a few pages to 100+ depending on the topic. PUL call number: (NEC) DR401.T875.

Another useful bibliography for Ottoman history is Türkiye Tarih Yayınları Bibliyografyası. Four volumes have been published: volume 1, 2nd edition, covers material published in the years 1729–1955, volume 2 the years 1956–1967, volume 3 the years 1968–1977, and volume 4 the years 1978–1984. While Türkiye Tarih Yayınları Bibliyografyası does not compare to the Kornrumpf bibliography and Türkologischer Anzeiger in terms of quality and coverage, being limited to publications in Turkey, it does give the table of contents of both academic and, more importantly, of some popular history journals, the articles of which tend not to be included in the aforementioned bibliographies and indexes. PUL call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z2846.K62

The basic bibliographical works for history in general are Historical Abstracts and America: History and Life, both published until recently by ABC-CLIO and now by EBSCO. Due to the general nature of these indexes, they cover a much broader range of works than does Türkologischer Anzeiger and Index Islamicus and thus identify works that appear outside of the ones indexed by the more specialized journals. For example a keyword search for “Ottoman” and “navy” in online databases pulls up 119 records in Historical Abstracts, 45 records in Index Islamicus, and 4 records in Türkologischer Anzeiger. Historical Abstracts provides an abstract for each article and review it indexes (books seem to get just subject headings), which increases the number of possible keyword hits. The subject headings are also superior to those provided by the specialized journals as they are Library of Congress subject headings, i.e., the same that are used in the Princeton University Library catalog and most WorldCat records. 

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Ottoman Publications 


While not specifically relevant for Ottoman history, a number of catalogs and bibliographies are important for Ottoman studies in general. First is Eski Harflerle Basılmış Türkçe Eserler Kataloğu, 5 volumes, by M. Seyfettin Özege (Nuruosmaniye, İstanbul: Fatih Yayınevi Matbaası, 1971–1979). This is a comprehensive listing of approximately 25,500 Ottoman Turkish books published between 1729 and 1928 (the catalog does include some post-1928 publications from outside the Turkish Republic, reprints of earlier publications, and other exceptions). The catalog is organized alphabetically by title. Under each title are listed all known editions/printings. Volume 5 includes a supplement containing additional works identified during the publication process. This catalog has become the standard reference source for Ottoman books, and all Princeton University Library catalog records for Ottoman books have included the relevant Özege catalog number since 1991, a practice that a number of other libraries also follow (the keyword searchable note, “Turkish in Arabic script,” is also added to each PUL catalog record, although older records may not include this note). There are problems with the catalog. First, no such catalog can be complete. Despite Özege’s efforts to identify all Ottoman books, some escaped his efforts. Second and much more important, the lack of indexes is a problem if one is looking for works by a specific author, a publisher, a place of publication, etc. Third, there are numerous mistakes in the alphabetization of the works. Fourth, the transliteration of Ottoman Turkish is inconsistent and often differs from a transliteration based on modern Turkish, which seems to be the basis for the transliteration. Finally, the format of the entries does not follow an optimum style. PUL call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z2831.O34.

A similar work to the Özege catalog is Türkiye basmaları toplu kataloğu: Arap harfli Türkçe eserler, 17291928 = The union catalogue of Turkey’s printed books: Turkish publications in Arabic letters, 6 volumes in 7 parts [hazırlayanlar, Müjgan Cunbur, Dursun Kaya] (Ankara: Milli Kütüphane Basımevi, 1990–2004). This work has some benefits not found in the Özege catalog. Each Ottoman title is followed by a list of Turkish libraries in which the book may be found.  The catalog is organized alphabetically by author, thus complementing the Özege catalog. One problem with the catalog is that publication appears to have ceased after six volumes, so only authors whose names begin with the letters A through J are covered. A second problem is the lack of any consistency in the cataloging records supplied by the contributing libraries. The same book may be listed in several places because of differences in how the book is described or it may be found in more than one place because of a lack of authority control, i.e., the author’s name has been established in different forms by different libraries (in the US, the Library of Congress maintains a Name Authority File in order to avoid this problem, so in theory, all books by the same author, no matter how the author’s name appears in a book, will be found under one approved form of the name). PUL call number: (NEC) Z2831.T8.

The National Library of Turkey has issued a CD-ROM version of its union catalog, Eski Harfli Türkçe Basma Eserler Bibliografyası 1584–1986 = The Bibliography of Turkish Works Printed in Non-Latin (Arabic, Armenian and Greek characters) 1584–1986 (Ankara: Millı̂ Kütüphane, 2001. 1 CD-ROM; 4 3/4 in). This catalog has a major advantage over the Özege and union catalogs in that one can search by title, author, translator, place of publication, year of publication (Rumî, Hicrî, and Gregorian calendars), and publisher/printing press. This catalog has many of the problems of its printed, incomplete version in terms of the inconsistency of records submitted by contributing libraries. Another problem is that the CD-ROM was prepared before unicode standards were established for fonts. Unless one’s computer contains the font used by the database, letters with diacritics are transformed into other symbols in the results. This also poses a problem in searching for these letters, although one can copy the symbols from results and paste them in the search fields to represent the letters. PUL call number: Firestone Microforms Services (FilmB) COMPUTER FILE 606

Turkish books were not only published in the Arabic alphabet. Two works cover Turkish books published in the Greek alphabet and in the Armenian alphabet, respectively. Karamanlica (or Karamanlidika) books, i.e., books in the Turkish language published in the Greek alphabet, are described by Sévérien Salaville and Eugène Dalleggio in Karamanlidika: bibliographie analytique d’ouvrages en langue turque imprimés en caractères grecs, volumes 1–3 (1584–1850; 1851–1865; and 1866–1900) and by Evangelia Balta, (Karamanlidika: Additions, 1584–1900; Karamanlidika: XXe siècle; and Karamanlidika: Nouvelles additions et compléments) (Athènes, 1958–1997). An updated and corrected edition of the work, Karamanlidika: Bibliographie analytique = Karamanlıca Kitaplar: Çözümlemeli Bibliyografya, volume 1, 1718–1830, edited by Balta is being published by Türkiye İş Bankası, with the first volume appearing in 2018. Princeton University Library has started to include the Karamanlidika number of the first edition in each record of these books as well as the following keyword searchable note: “Turkish in Greek alphabet.” PUL call numbers: first edition, volumes 1–5: (NEC) Z2841.S3; volume 6: (F) Z2841.B25 1997; second edition: (NEC) Z2859.S24 2018.

There is a similar catalog for Turkish books published in Armenian script prepared by Hasmik A. Stepʻanyan. First published in 1985 with the title, Hayataṛ tʻurkʻeren grkʻeri matenagitutʻyun, 1727–1968, the bibliography has since been reprinted with parallel Turkish and French translations: Hayataṛ tʻurkʻeren grkʻeri ew hayataṛ tʻurkʻeren parberakan mamuli matenagitutʻiwn, 1727–1968 / Hasmik A. Stepʻanean = Ermeni harfli Türkçe kitaplar ve süreli yayınlar bibliyografyası, 1727–1968 = Bibliographie des livres et de la presse Armeno-Turque, 1727–1968 (Galatasaray, İstanbul: Turkuaz Yayınları, 2005). In the Princeton University Library catalog, Turkish books in the Armenian script are now being given a keyword searchable note to this effect. Unfortunately, several versions of this note exist: “Turkish in Armenian script”; “Ottoman Turkish in Armenian script”; and “Turkish in Armenian characters.” PUL call number: Annex A, Forrestal (TEMP) Z7096.S746 1985a; Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z7096.S746 2005. 

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Since the mid-1980s, three union catalogs of Ottoman periodicals have appeared, two by Hasan Duman and one by the National Library of Turkey. Duman’s first work, İstanbul kütüphaneleri Arap harfli süreli yayınlar toplu kataloğu, 1828–1928=Union catalogue of the periodicals in Arabic script in the libraries of Istanbul, 1828–1928, with an introduction by Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu (Beşiktaş, İstanbul: İslâm Tarih, Sanat, ve Kültür Araştırma Merkezi, İslâm Konferansı Teşkilâtı) appeared in 1986. Listing 1804 titles found in one or more of ten Istanbul libraries, this work provides detailed bibliographical information about each journal and lists those libraries which have the journal, together with the actual holdings. There are also a number of useful indexes in both Arabic and Turkish. PUL call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z6958.T8 D86 1986.

The appearance of this first union catalog was followed shortly by the Millı̂ Kütüphane union catalog, Eski harfli Türkçe süreli yayınlar toplu kataloğu (Ankara: Kültür ve Turizm Bakanlığı, Millı̂ Kütüphane Başkanlığı Yayınları, 1987), which includes records from libraries throughout Turkey and lists 2325 titles. The catalog has a number of serious drawbacks, however, including no indexes. For a comparison of these two catalogs, see William Blair, “Three Catalogues of Ottoman and Early Turkish Republic Journals and Newspapers,” The Turkish Studies Association Bulletin 15, no. 2 (September 1991), pp. 371–78. PUL call number: (NEC) Z6958.T8 E84.

A second, greatly expanded version of the Duman catalog, Başlangıcından harf devrimine kadar Osmanlı-Türk süreli yayınlar ve gazeteler bibliyografyası ve toplu kataloğu, 1828–1928 [İngilizce çeviriler Christopher Bailey; Arapça çeviriler Cengiz Ketene, Musa Yıldız] = A bibliography and union catalogue of Ottoman-Turkish serials and newspapers from beginning to the introduction of the modern Turkish alphabet, 1828–1928 [English texts by Christopher Bailey; Arabic texts by Cengiz Ketene, Musa Yildiz] = Bībliyūghrāfiyā wa-al-fihris al-muwaḥḥad lil-ṣiḥāfah al-ʻUthmānīyah - al-Turkīyah (al-dawrīyāt wa-al-ṣuḥuf) min al-bidāyah ilá thawrat taghyīr al-aḥruf, 1828–1928 (Ankara: Enformasyon ve Dokümantasyon Hizmetleri Vakfı), appeared in 2000 in three volumes, two consisting of the catalog and one with samples of journals in facsimile. This second edition of the catalog contains 2526 records from twenty-six contributing libraries—twelve from Istanbul, four from Ankara, and ten from libraries located outside of these two cities. Explanatory material is in Arabic, English, and Turkish, and, like its predecessor, the work includes many useful indexes. PUL call number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE). Z6958.T8 D85 2000. 

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A subcategory of Ottoman periodical literature is that of yearbooks. While the first Ottoman yearbook was only published in 1847, yearbooks, especially the provincial ones, often contain information on the number of different types of buildings such as mosques, lists of towns and villages within each province, and provincial maps, information which can be used to check information obtained elsewhere. The first union catalog of Ottoman yearbooks, Osmanlı Yıllıkları (Salnameler ve Nevsaller): Bibliyografya ve Bazı İstanbul Kütüphanelerine Göre bir Katalog Denemesi=Ottoman Year-Books (Salname and Nevsal): A Bibliograph [sic] and a Union Catalog with Reference to Istanbul Libraries (İstanbul: İslâm Tarih, Sanat ve Kültürü Araştırma Merkezi [IRCICA], 1982), was also edited by Hasan Duman. It lists 716 yearbooks, of which 498 are provincial yearbooks. There are a small number of provincial yearbooks not listed in this catalog. For example, the eighth Halep yearbook and the ninth Konya yearbook are lacking, but overall this catalog is an impressive record of Ottoman yearbooks. PUL: (NEC) Z2845.A5 D85.

A second, expanded edition of Duman’s union catalog, Osmanlı sâlnâmeleri ve nevsâlleri bibliyografyası ve toplu kataloğu [İngilizce çeviriler, Christopher Bailey; Arapça çeviriler, Musa Yıldız] = A bibliography and union catalogue of Ottoman year-books [English texts by Christopher Bailey; Arabic texts by Musa Yildiz] = al-Bībliyūghrāfiyā wa-al-fihris al-muwaḥḥad lil-sālnāmāt wa-al-nawsālāt al-ʻUthmānīyah (Ankara: Enformasyon ve Dokümantasyon Hizmetleri Vakfı), appeared in 2000 in two volumes, one containing the catalog and one with samples of yearbooks in facsimile. Expanding his base from twelve to sixteen libraries, including three in Ankara and one in Erzurum, Duman has added fourteen additional yearbooks to the catalog for a total of 730 records. This catalog is still not a complete listing as it does not include the eighth Halep or the ninth Konya yearbooks that were left out of the first edition and evidently not held by any of the libraries consulted by Duman. Still, this catalog is a major contribution to Ottoman studies. PULcall number: Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE) Z2843.A5 D85 2000. 

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Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Osmanlı Saray Arşivi

The Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Osmanlı Saray Arşivi contains some 153,000 documents under 12,476  document (evrak) numbers and 10, 775 registers (defter). The Archive has two separate catalogs, one for documents with both Turkish and English interfaces ( and one for registers, also with both Turkish and English interfaces ( Registration, which can be done online, is required to access the catalogs.

If you are like the author of this guide and still find printed catalogs useful, there are two published catalogs, both of which are incomplete. The first catalog is Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Arşivi Kılavuzu (1. Fasikül, A–C, İstanbul: Devlet Basımevi, 1938; 2. Fasikül, C–H, İstanbul: Maarif Matbaası, 1940). This catalog is a subject catalog with the entries organized alphabetically. While the complete catalog is available (or at least was in the mid-1980s) in manuscript form in the Archives, the print version only covers the topics Aba-Hançerli Bey zade. A decision not to publish the rest of the catalog was made because of the many errors in the manuscript version. Each subject entry has a very brief description of the content, gives the classification (E or D) and item number(s), and the date(s) (year or century) of the item(s). The catalog also includes twenty-seven facsimiles of documents with modern Turkish summaries. PUL call number: (NEC) CD1999.I8 A45 1938.

A second effort to catalog the Archive’s collections began in 1957 under the direction of İsmail Hakkı Uzunçarşılı. This work resulted in the publication of two fascicules, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Osmanlı Saray Arşivi kataloğu, I. Fasikül, Fermânlar, No. E. 1–12476 and 2. Fasikül, Hükümler-Beratlar, No. E. 1–12476, prepared by Uzunçarşılı, İbrahim Kemâl Baybura, and Ülkü Altındağ and edited for publication by Ülkü Altındağ (Ankara: Türk Tarih Kurumu, 1985–1988). As the titles of the two fascicules indicate, documents are classified by the type of document. Many more 100-page fascicules of different document types—a total of 34—were promised, but none seems to have appeared. Subject classification fascicules and fascicules for documents collected under a single [fiş] were also planned. Each entry in the published fascicules gives the date of the document, a brief summary, a physical description and the classification number. All told, in both fascicules, 1568 documents or roughly 1% of the 153,000 documents in the Archives are described. PUL call number: (NEC) CD2266.T66 1985q.

A more narrowly focused guide to a part of the collection is Tahsin Öz, “Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Arşivinde Fatih Mehmed’e ait Belgeler,” Belleten 14 (1950). This article identifies and gives a brief summary of over one hundred documents related to Sultan Mehmed II that are held by the Archive. PUL call number: (NEC) DR401 .B455.

A second specialized catalog, Le Khanat de Crimée dans les Archives du Musée du Palais de Topkapı (Paris: Mouton, c. 1978), is devoted to documents pertaining to the Crimean khans. Prepared under the direction of Alexandre Bennigsen during the course of an Ottoman paleography seminar directed by Pertev Boratav, this catalog inventories 207 documents and provides facsimiles of 54 of them.  Each entry contains the document’s classification number, gives its date and the type of document, names its author and addressees, gives the number of lines, and identifies its language. There is also either a translation into French of the document or a summary of its contents as well as annotation. In addition to the document inventory, there is a thirty-one-page introduction and a number of appendices: biographies of the khans, a geneaological table, a table listing the names of the khans and the holders of the positions of qalgha (prince, first in line to the throne), and nûreddîn (prince, second in line to the throne), a chronological listing of the documents, a listing of the documents in classification order, a glossary, a bibliography, an index of persons, an index of placenames, and a map of the Crimea. PUL call number: (F) DK511.C7K43.

Many Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Arşivi documents have been published in books and articles, but there is no comprehensive listing of such published documents. There are some works that are devoted to reproducing material from the Archive. Akdes Nimet Kurat, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Arşivindeki Altın Ordu, Kırım ve Türkistan Hanlarına ait Yarlık ve Bitikler ([Ankara]: Dil ve Tarih-Coğrafya Fakültesi Yayınlarından, 1940), reproduces in facsimile, transcription, and translation ten documents relating to the Golden Horde and the Crimean and Turkistan Khans found in the Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi Arşivi. The book includes a useful glossary of words appearing in the documents. PUL call number: DS22.7 .K873 1940.

Another collection of documents is that prepared by Jacues Lefort, Documents grecs dans les archives de Topkapı Sarayı: Contribution à l’histoire de Cem Sultan = Topkapı Sarayı Arşivlerinin yunanca belgeleri: Cem Sultanʾın tarihine katkı (Ankara: Türk Tarih Kurumu, 1981). As the title indicates, this bilingual work focuses narrowly on documents in Greek about Cem Sultan, the brother of Sultan Bayezid II, of which twenty-two are presented here. For each document there is a brief summary of content, physical description, analysis, extensive notes, transcription, and at the end of the volume a facsimile.  An appendix contains a letter in its original French from Charles VIII, King of France dated April 1486. There is a twenty-six page introduction, a short bibliography, a list of plates, and an index.  PUL call number: (RECAP) DR503 .D62 1981.

A work that reproduces a register from the Archives is Topkapı Sarayı arşivi H. 951-952 tarihli ve E-12321 numaralı Mühimme Defteri, edited by Halil Sahillioğlu and published by the İslâm Tarih, Sanat ve Kültür Araştırma Merkezi (İstanbul, 2002). The work contains a transcription of the original register as well as a cd-rom containing a reproduction of the original. PUL call number: (NEC) DR505.M83 2002) 

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Travel Accounts

One type of contemporary source not often included in scholarly bibliographies is travel literature. Travel accounts can offer descriptions, details, and observations not commonly found in government documents and chronicles. Heath W. Lowry’s book, Ottoman Bursa in Travel Accounts (Bloomington: Indiana University Ottoman and Modern Turkish Studies Publications, 2003) illustrates the ways in which travel accounts can significantly add to our knowledge about a city, society, or institutions. However, travel accounts must be used with caution. Travelers frequently did not know the language or languages of the areas through which they traveled, often relied on interlocutors, were often more interested in reporting the exotic or unusual than the normal, and frequently copied wholesale from previous travelers.

Travel literature, partly because of its accessibility to scholars, has been well studied, and numerous bibliographies of travel literature exist. The list of bibliographies given here is by no means exhaustive but is intended to serve as a starting point for research.

Weber, Shirley. Voyages and Travels in the Near East Made during the XIX Century: Being a Part of a Larger Catalogue of Works on Geography, Cartography, Voyages and Travels, in the Gennadius Library. Princeton, NJ: American School of Classical Studies at Athens, 1952. PUL call number: (RECAP) Z3013.W434 1952; (SHS) Z3013 .W4 1990z.

Weber, Shirley. Voyages and Travels in Greece, the Near East and Adjacent Regions Made Previous to the Year 1801: Being a Part of a Larger Catalogue of Works on Geography, Cartography, Voyages and Travels, in the Gennadius Library. Princeton, NJ: American School of Classical Studies at Athens, 1953. PUL call number: (F) Z6016.L6 W434 1953; (SHS) Z3013 .W4 1990z.

The two catalogs of travel accounts held by the Gennadius Library in Athens prepared by Shirley Howard Weber are a good place to start. Together, the two volumes contain 2,066 entries. The catalogues are organized by date of publication and under each date alphabetically by author. Some of the entries include a brief summary of contents. Both catalogs include an “Index of Travelers and Authors” and a “General Index.” The nineteenth-century volume includes an “Appendix Containing Works Mainly Pictorial.” In the pre-nineteenth-century volume the entries are divided into five sections: Introductory treatises and collections of voyages; Travel accounts; Topographical and descriptive works; Pictorial works; and Proskynetaria, or pilgrim guidebooks.

Other than Weber’s catalogs, most bibliographical listings of travel accounts are limited either chronologically, by origin of the traveler, or by area visited.

One of the more useful of these reference works to travel guides is Stephane Yerasimos, Les Voyageurs dans l’Empire ottoman (XIVe–XVIe siècles): Bibliographie, itinéraires et inventaire des lieux habités (Ankara: Société Turque d’Histoire, 1991). The work begins with a ninety-two-page introduction in which Yerasimos analyzes some 450 travel accounts using both statistical and descriptive approaches. The core of the work is the 351-page inventory of accounts, which are listed chronologically. Under each author are listed editions and translations of the account, followed by a brief summary of the account, a bibliography of secondary works discussing the account, and notes. Yersimos does not limit his study to European travelers, but also includes travelers from the Muslim world. Sixty-nine maps accompany the text, and there are a forty-page place-name index and a six-page index of authors and titles of anonymous works. PUL call number: (NEC) DR423 .Y47q; (SHS) DR423 .Y47 1991q.

Russian Travelers to the Christian East from the Twelfth to the Twentieth Century by Theofanis G. Stavrou and Peter R. Weisensel (Columbus, Ohio: Slavica Publishers, c. 1985) provides access to an underutilized subset of travel literature. By “‘Russian’ […] the compilers meant both the original language of composition and nationality of the author. … ‘Christian East’ refers to those areas associated in Russian thinking with the origins of Christianity, Orthodox culture, and the geographic jurisdiction of the Eastern Patriarchates of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem”—in other words, the lands of the Ottoman Empire, except for North Africa, Bosnia, and the Crimea, plus Abyssinia. The work contains 1,552 entries chronologically organized, and each entry contains the date(s) of the journey, the author’s name if known, the title of the account, city and date of publication, libraries in which the item can be found, a brief description of the contents, and biographical information about the author. The work also contains an eighty-nine page index. PUL call number: (F) Z3014.D45 S72.

Chatzipanagioti-Sangmeister, Julia. Griechenland, Zypern, Balkan und Levant: Eine kommentierte Bibliographhie der Reiseliteratur des 18. Jahrhunderts. 2 vols. Eutin: Lumpeter & Lasel, c. 2006. PUL call number: (F) Z2298 .C48 2006.

This bibliography organized alphabetically by author describes 1217 works, including editions and translations, published before 1900. Each entry contains the following information: author’s name, if known, a brief biography of the author with references, and a list of all editions and translations found. Each work listed has a full bibliographical entry, including pagination, size, illustrations, comments, agency, and location. The work includes useful indexes for associated names other than authors (i.e., illustrators, fellow travelers, and translators), place names, year(s) of travel, place of publication, and publishers and printers. While the amount of travel literature perhaps necessitates limiting the works included, the arbitrary cut-off date does mean that modern editions of pre-1900 accounts are not listed. As an example, while eighty-five editions of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu’s letters (sixty-three in English) are listed, at least fourteen editions of the letters have been published since 1900, many of which are more accessible than pre-1900 editions and which include scholarly introductions and annotations.

Bevis, Richard, compiler and editor. Bibliotheca Cisorientalia: An Annotated Checklist of Early English Travel Books on the Near and Middle East. Editorial assistants: Hilda Hamayan [and others]; research assistants: Jean Bridgman, Asil Nasr [and] Basem Raʾad. Boston: G. K. Hall, c. 1973. PUL call number: (F) Z3013.B47.

This annotated checklist contains several thousand titles (the entries are unnumbered) of travel accounts published in English between the mid-sixth century and 1914. The geographical area covered includes Asia Minor, Cyprus, Iran, Egypt, and the Arabian Penisula; North Africa, areas north of Asia Minor and Iran, and east of Iran are not included in the coverage. The accounts are divided into three categories: “English Language Travel Books”; “Translations into English”; and “Collections.” There are also sections devoted to “Biography, Criticism and Scholarship” and “Bibliography.” As the checklist was published in 1973, these last two sections are quite dated.

The entry for each book has the following information: Authors’ names; Titles; Publication data; Collations; Annotations (by the editorial staff and quite useful); and Sources (“the coded letters which terminate every card designate the source either of the reference or of the book examined; that is, they may indicate other bibliographies (unannotated titles) or collections of books”).

Not all editions of individual works are given—for example, only two editions of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu’s Letters are listed compared to the sixty-three editions found in Chatzipanagioti-Sangmeister’s bibliography. The biggest problem, however, is how the information is presented. The book reproduces the typewritten cards upon which the data was originally entered. This makes for quite an unappealing presentation that is, at times, difficult to follow.

Borromea, Elisabetta. Voyageurs occidentaux dans l’Empire ottoman (1600–1644). 2 vols. Paris: Maisonneuve & Larose; Beyoğlu, Istanbul: Institut Français d’études anatoliennes, c. 2007. PUL call number: (F) DR424 .B677 2007.

This work describes 238 accounts of travel to the European provinces of the Ottoman Empire (the Balkans and Crimea, as well as the Cyclades) that took place between the years 1600 and 1644. The starting date was chosen to pick up where the Yerasimos volume described above ends. The first volume provides analysis of the travel accounts, with chapters devoted to Western travelers and their accounts, the maritime route to Constantinople, the land route to Constantinople, the route to Crimea, and religious travelers to the Balkans. The text is followed by a glossary, an extensive bibliography, and 22 maps of itineraries.  The second volume contains descriptions of the 238 travel accounts, which are organized chronologically. Each entry begins with the author, if known, offers biographical information about the author, lists the manuscripts, editions, and translations of the account, includes bio-bibliographical references, briefly describes the text, and lists the intinerary of the traveler. There are also substantial footnotes throughout this volume.

Hélène Pignot, La Turquie chrétienne: Récits des voyages français et anglais dans l’Empire ottoman au xviiᵉ siècle (Vevey, Switzerland: Xenia, c. 2007) takes a different approach, analyzing in depth the accounts of seven French and six English travelers to the Ottoman Empire in the seventeenth century. PUL call number: (F) DF721 .T87 2007. 

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Ottoman Travelers

A subset of travel accounts that have been less utilized are those written by Ottomans. The most thorough guide to this literature is Caspar Hillebrand’s “A Researchers’ List and Bibliography of Ottoman Travel Accounts to Europe,” 2nd ed., which appears as Working Paper # 2 of the BMBF project “Europe from the outside—Formations of Middle Eastern Views on Europe from inside Europe,” Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhems-Universität Bonn (2014). This Working Paper is available as a pdf download at It contains a chronological listing of accounts, bibliographical information on the writings of each traveler, and an extensive bibliography of both primary and secondary works.

Issue 258 of Türk Dili is devoted to Turkish-language travel accounts. This “Gezi Özel Sayısı” contains an introduction, “Türkçede Gezi Kitapları,” by Orhan Şaik Gökyay, a bibliography by İbrahim Olgun, which lists over 300 travel accounts, both published and unpublished, and excerpts from fifty-three travel accounts ranging from the 1550s (Seydi Ali Reis) to 1937 (Tahir Kutsi Makal). PUL call number: (NEC) PL101 .T8753. 

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Ottoman Place Names

Akbayar, Nuri. Osmanlı Yer Adları Sözlüğü. Nişantaşı, İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 2001. viii, 189, 73 pp. PUL call number: (SNE) DR415 .A43 2001.

Index Anatolicus (url:

Köylerimiz: Köy Kanunu Tatbik Olunan ve Olunmayan Köy İsimlerini Alfabe Sirasile Gösterir. İst[a]nbul: Dahiliye Vekâleti Mahallî İdareler Umum Müdürlüğü, 1933. PUL call number: (RECAP) DR414.T863 1933.

Mostras, C. Dictionnaire géographique de l’Empire ottoman. St.-Pétersbourg: Commissionnaires de l’Académie Impériale des Sciences, 1873 [reprinted İstanbul: Pera Turizm ve Ticaret Limited Şirketi, 1995]. xii, 241 pp. PUL call number: (RECAP) DR415 .M678 1873.

Muammer, Binbaşı. Sahillerimizde Bulunan Mevkilerle Liman ve Sairenin İsimlerini Gösterir Lûgatçe. İstanbul: Deniz Matbaası, 1931. PUL call number: (RECAP) DR415.M825 1931.

Umar, Bilge. Türkiye’deki tarihsel adlar: Türkiye’nin tarihsel coğrafyası ve tarihsel adları üzerine alfabetik düzende bir inceleme. İstanbul: İnkılâp Kitabevi, 1993. PUL call number: (Annex A) DR415.U537 1993.

Nişanyan, Sevan. Adını Unutan Ülke: Türkiye’de Adı Değiştirilen Yerler Sözlüğü. Cağaloğlu, İstanbul: Everest Yayınları, c. 2010. PUL call number: (NEC) DR414.N57 2010.

Sezen, Tahir. Osmanlı Yer Adları: (Alfabetik sırayla). Ankara: T.C. Başbakanlık Devlet Arşivleri Müdürlüğü, 2006. xi, 711 pp., 1 folding, colored map. PUL call number: (SNE) DR415 .S49 2006.

Son Teşkilât-ı Mülkiyede Köylerimizin Adları. İstanbul: İçişleri Bakanlığı. Nüfus Müdüriyet-i Umumiyesi [Hilâl Matbaası], 1928. PUL call number: (RECAP) DR415.T853 1928.

Türkiye'de Meskûn Yerler Kılavuzu: Memleketimizin Bütün Meskûn Yerlerini ve Bunların İdare Bağlılıklarını, Köy Kanunu Tatbik Edilen Yerlerle Belediye Teşkilâtı Bulunan Mahalleri Gösterir. Ankara: T. C. İçişleri Bakanlığı, 1946–1950. 2 vols. (1,234 pp.). PUL call number: (SNE) DR414.T87 1946a.

There are an increasing number of publications devoted to Ottoman place names, both for the empire as a whole and for individual areas of the empire. Several of these will be discussed here in order of publication.

The oldest is Mostras’s Dictionnaire géographique de l’Empire Ottoman, originally published in 1873 and reprinted in 1995. Mostras (d. 1871) was the Russian consul at Smyrna/İzmir and composed the work in 1863. Following a brief introduction in which the author lists the provinces of the European and Asian regions of the empire are two sections. The first of 184 pages consists of 1,998 entries alphabetized according to the Ottoman alphabet. The second of 57 pages is effectively an index of 3,492 entries arranged according to the French pronunciation of the place names, thus Bouldour for (ﺑﻮﺮﺩﻮﺮ). Each entry in the first section contains a French transliteration of the entry and a brief description of the entry, including its position in the hierarchy of administrative divisions (or if a geographical feature information about the feature) and its location. Thus, the entry for ﺑﻮﺮﺩﻮﺮ contains the following information: “V. de la Turquie d’Asie, chef-lieu du liva du même nom, dans l’eyalet de Karaman, sur la lac de Bouldour.” The index notes that Bouldour is a ville (V.) and in a footnote gives the variant name of Termekesch (ﺗﺮﻣﻜﺶ). The entry for ﺗﺮﻣﻜﺶ refers to the entry for ﺑﻮﺮﺩﻮﺮ. While most descriptions are quite short, some run to a page in length. Other than the French transliteration of the place names, this work is informative, easy to use, and reflects the situation in the Ottoman Empire of the mid-nineteenth century.

Son Teskilât-ı Mülkiyede Köylerimizin Adları contains all the administrative divisions from province to village. Published by the Nüfus Müdüriyet-i Umumiyesi of the Dahiliye Vekâleti in 1928 before the alphabet change from the Arabic script to the Latin alphabet, the work is divided into 5 sections totaling 1,066 pages. Section one, “Vilâyetler” (2 pp.), lists the vilâyets in alphabetical order and for each vilâyet gives the number of kazas, nahiyes, and köys and provides a Romanized spelling of the vilâyet’s name. Section two, “Kazalar” (11 pp.), lists the kazas in alphabetical order, and for each kaza gives the number of nahiyes and köys, names the vilâyet in which the kaza is located, and provides a Romanized spelling of the kaza’s name. Section three, “Nahiyeler” (20 pp.), lists the nahiyes in alphabetical order and for each nahiye gives the number of köys, names the kaza and vilâyet in which the nahiye is located, and provides a Romanized spelling of the nahiye’s name. Section four, “Bil’umum Teşkilât-ı İdariye” (32 pp), lists the names with their Romanized spellings of all of the administrative centers—vilâyet, kaza, and nahiye—alphabetically, gives the administrative level, and, where appropriate, names the kaza and/or vilâyet in which the center is located. The fifth and final section (990 pp.) lists all the village names but by vilâyet, kaza, and then nahiye. In other words, to locate a village within its administrative structure, one needs to know at least one of the higher-level administrative divisions. Otherwise, one might have to search 990 pages of village names to locate the village.

Binbaşı Muammer’s Sahillerimizde Bulunan Mevkilerle Liman ve Sairenin İsimlerini Gösterir Lûgatçe is a valuable listing of coastal features of the Anatolian and European coasts of modern Turkey. The book is divided into two sections, one detailing the Anatolian coastline and the other, shorter one detailing the Rumeli (European) coastline. Entries are barebones, giving the location of the place name either in relation to a known location or by its latitude and longitude or both. Two examples should suffice: “Abana, L.: Karadenizde İnebolunun 11.5 mil şark cihetinde” and “Adalya-Antalya: Karaman sahilinde. A. = 36° 52ʹ T. = 30° 45ʹ.” Two abbreviations are not explained—L. and B.—but likely mean liman/limanı and burun/burnu. One advantage of this work is that it does include geographical features not often included in the other works described here. These include ada, bank, boğaz, burun, çay, çiftlik, dağ, dere, göl, harabe, iskele, kale, kaya, körfez, liman, nehir, sığlık, tepe, and yarım ada, in addition to inhabited places like kasaba, köy, and city names.

Köylerimiz, published in 1933, is a straightforward, alphabetical listing of all the villages in the Turkish Republic. Following each village name are the names of the vilâyet and kaza in which the village is located. Villages with a population of 150 inhabitants or more are indicated by an asterisk, and villages that are nahiye centers are marked with two asterisks.

An updating of Son Teşkilât-i Mülkiyede Köylerimizin Adları (1928) and Köylerimiz (1933), Türkiye'de Meskûn Yerler Kılavuzu provides an alphabetical listing of inhabited sites in Turkey. Each entry gives the type of settlement—beklemeyeri, bucak, çiftlik, ilçe, il, ilmerkezi, istasyon, kom, köy, mahalle, mevki, mezraa, muhtarlık, oba, sayfiye, sayfiye (yöre), yaylak, and yazlık safiye—and the administrative hierarchy—Köy Muhtarlığı, Bucak, İlçe, and İl—where appropriate. Asterisks following a name indicate those sites to which the Köy Kanunu has been applied, and B indicates places organized as a belediye. The last section of the book (46 pp.) lists those places that underwent administrative changes between 1 Ocak 1945 and 26 Temmuz 1946.

Bilge Umar’s Türkiye’deki tarihsel adlar is an encyclopedic reference to historical place names of Turkey. Following a brief introduction of six pages, the bulk of the book, 824 pages, provides detailed information on the names included in the study. Next comes thirty-eight tables on 24 pages offering information about place names derived from the Luwian language, an ancient Indo-European language closely related to Hittite and spoken in central and western Anatolia and northern Syria in the second and first millennium B.C. A six-page bibliography of sources used completes the volume. The entry for Burdur is as follows: “Burdur. İl merkezi kentimiz. Adının kökeni ve anlamı konusunda bkz. Buldur.” The entry for Buldur is much more substantive:

Şimdiki resmî biçimi, Burdur. İlkçağ Pisidia bölgesinde il merkezi kentimizin adı.

Bu adın, ortaçağda yöreye verilen Polydorion adından gelmiş olabileceği sanılır. Oysa, asıl olan, Luwi temelindeki Anadolu yerli kültürünün en uzun süre yabancı etkilere direndiği bölgelerden biri olan Pisidia’daki bu yörenin, ortaçağ öncesinde yerli dilden, Luwi dilinden gelme bir adının bulunması ve ortaçağdaki Polydorion adının, bunun Rum ağzında Hellen diline uydurulmuş biçimi olmasıdır: Tıpkı Karka/Kraka’nın Rum ağzında Akrokos, onun da Türk ağzında Eğrigöz edilmesi gibi. Kaldı ki, Polydorion adı, pek zorlamalı bir anlam taşıyor: “Polydoros (Poly-Doros, Çok Armağanlı) Yeri”: yani, “Doğanın çok nimetlendirdiği yer”.

Given the book’s emphasis, it may not be the best place to start when trying to identify or locate a place name found in an Ottoman source. The work also does not include Ottoman spellings for the place names.

Akbayar’s Osmanlı Yer Adları Sözlüğü appeared in 2001. It is a far more comprehensive work than that of Mostras. The book has three sections: an alphabetical listing of places names in modern Turkish, a bibliography, and an index arranged alphabetically according to the Ottoman alphabet. The first section is 176 pages in length and contains many more entries than does the Dictionnaire géographique de l’Empire ottoman. The entry for Burdur (ﺑﻮﺮﺩﻮﺮ) is: “SM. [sancak merkezi], Konya-Burdur (Terkemiş) (Türkmen-i has) [variant names] (Bg. [Bugün 2001] İl ve il merkezi).” For this entry the information given is roughly comparable to that given in Dictionnaire géographique de l’Empire Ottoman, but all entries in Osmanlı Yer Adları Sözlüğü are pretty much the same length, whereas Mostras often provides considerably more detail. The second section is a useful thirteen-page bibliography of the sources used in compiling the work. The third section is an index arranged alphabetically according to the Ottoman alphabet.

Sezen’s work, Osmanlı Yer Adları: (Alfabetik sırayla), is similar to that of Akbayar. It has three sections, of which the first (pp. 3–557) is arranged alphabetically in the modern Turkish alphabet, the second (pp. 561–695) is alphabetized according to the Ottoman alphabet, and the third (pp. 669–711) is a bibliography of sources. The work is presented in tabular form. The first section has four columns: “İdârî Birimin Yeni Harflerle Adı”; “Eski Harflerle Adı”; “Unvanı” (this refers to the type of administrative unit, e.g., Şehir, Köy, Kaza, Nahiye, Kasaba, Sancak, Eyâlet, Vilâyet, Ada, as well as some special-status administrative divisions); and “Bağlı Olduğu Nahiye, Kaza, Sancak, Eyâlet veya Vilâyet.” The entry for Burdur is as follows:

Burdur ﺑﻮﺮﺩﻮﺮ              Kaza (≈1530)          Hamid→Anadolu eyâleti

                                     Kaza (1844)             Hamid→Karaman eyâleti

                                     Sancak (1871)         Konya vilâyeti

                                     Vilâyet (1924)          Burdur

The second section just has two columns, the Ottoman spelling of the place name and the modern Turkish spelling, which serves to direct the reader to the appropriate entry in the first section. The bibliography consists largely of two series of provincial yearbooks, one appearing in 1967–68 and the second in 1973 to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Turkish Republic in 1923, as well as some later works on local history or geography. The bibliography does list 7 state yearbooks (Salname-i Devlet-i Âliye-i Osmaniye) of the 68 published and one Republic of Turkey yearbook, but does not include any Ottoman provincial yearbooks. The bibliography has a section on reference works and also includes one volume of Evliya Çelebi’s Seyahatname published in 1928, but not the other nine volumes published between 1896 and 1938, nor any of the later editions, including the definitive Yapı Kredi Yayınları edition published between 1999 and 2006. Finally, this work includes one folding, colored map, which shows the extent of the empire at various dates. Neither the size of the map nor the details provided contribute to the subject of the book, which is identifying and locating places.

Nişanyan’s work, Adını Unutan Ülke, is devoted to place names that have changed. The work is divided into two main sections, an alphabetical listing (350 pp.) by province (il) and then by district (ilçe) of the current names of places that have undergone name changes followed by the former name(s) and an alphabetical listing (205 pp.) of the former names with cross-references to the first section. The first section includes, where known, the language and etymology of the former name(s). The entry for Burdur is as follows:

Burdur il [Lat Praetoria “lojman’]

• Bazı kaynaklarda görülen Polydôrion adı mesnetsizdir. Praitória adı yeni bulunan 1438 tarihli bir Bizans yazmasında keşfedildi. TİB [Tabula Imperii Byzantini (Wien: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1976–2008)] 8.819. Lat  Praetoria ve Yun Praitória  “üst düzey devlet görevlilerinin seferde konakladığı resmi konukevi” anlamındadır. Güney Afrika Cumhuriyeti’nin başkenti aynı adı taşır.

The useful introductory material includes a guide on how to interpret individual entries, a discussion of sources used, a guide to transliteration, a short periodization of name changes from Abdülaziz (r. 1861–1876) to the early 2000s, the etymology of place names and five small maps showing the distribution of place names by language, and a short bibliography.

Index Anatolicus is an online resource prepared by Sevan Nişanyan last updated in February 2014. According to the Web site, the listing of villages and towns is almost complete, but more work needs to be done on the inclusion of neighborhoods, hamlets and plots. Geographical features such as valleys and mountains are mostly lacking. The database is intended to be a collaborative effort, and user input is welcome. The database at the time of this writing contains 42,253 current names and 33,028 former names. There are two search boxes, one for place name (yer adı) and one for administrative division (il/ilçe), as well as a help page, which describes the features of a sample entry. The accompanying map is extremely useful and can be enlarged in scale to the level of street names.

The entry for Burdur, which closely resembles that of Adını Unutan Ülke, is as follows:

Burdur il - Merkez (N bucağı) - Burdur

Y1438 TİB 8.819: Praitória [ Lat praetoria "yolkonağı" ]

1333 Batt [Ibn Battûta, Seyahatname (y. 1351 Anadolu gezisi 1333); trad. Defremery & Sanguinetti , Paris 1858, yeni basım Maspero 1982] 2.117: Burdur

Çeşitli kaynaklarda görülen Polydôrion adı mesnetsizdir. Praitória adı yeni bulunan 1438 tarihli bir Bizans yazmasında keşfedilmiştir. Lat Praetoria, Yun Praitória “yüksek devlet görevlilerinin seferde konakladığı resmi konukevi” anlamındadır. Güney Afrika Cumhuriyeti'nin başkenti aynı adı taşır.

There are a few drawbacks to this database. First, and inevitably in such a database, there are missing place names or variant spellings. For example, the entry for Alanya notes the former name Alaiyye, but not Alâiye, the transliteration of علائيه that appears in Osmanlı Yer Adları Sözlüğü. Mahmatlar appears but not its variant spelling Mahmadlar, which would be the stricter transliteration of the Ottoman spelling محمادلر)). Under Didim, Didyma is listed as a former name but a search for Didyma does not pull up the entry for Didim. A more serious concern is that Ottoman spellings do not appear at all, either in the entry or, more importantly, as a searchable item. If one is working from an Ottoman text, this lack of searchability in the Ottoman alphabet can be a problem. The database also works best with a Turkish keyboard, as it requires the use of letters of the Turkish alphabet not found on standard American keyboards. For example, Hemsin does not pull up Hemşin. While there are ways around this, such as using Word’s symbol table to type ş and then pasting it in the search box, this does require an additional step. The database does not include place names in former Ottoman provinces that are not located in modern Turkey. Finally, while entries do contain citations, there is no bibliography of sources used in the compilation of the database that would enable the user to determine what additional sources might useful. URL:

Each of these place name reference works has positives and negatives. The three volumes published by the Turkish government are comprehensive for the inhabited places within the current borders of the Republic of Turkey, but provide little or no historical information on previous names. Only the first published, Son Teşkilât-ı Mülkiyede Köylerimizin Adları, includes Ottoman spellings, although its organization by province could make finding a village difficult.  Index Anatolicus combines the comprehensiveness of the three government volumes with historical information on previous names, but it does not cover former Ottoman territories outside of the current borders of the Turkish Republic. The works of Akbayar, Mostras, and Sezen all include place names in former provinces of the Ottoman Empire that are outside the borders of the Turkish Republic. The Mostras work is the most user-friendly, the entries resembling encyclopedia entries, and often contains more information than the bare-bones approaches of Akbayar and Sezen. Mostras is also more esthetically pleasing, the font for the Ottoman alphabet is much nicer than the computer-generated fonts used by Akbayar and Sezen. For people working on the nineteenth century, Mostras offers a contemporary record of Ottoman place names. On the negative side, Mostras has the fewest entries, no bibliography, and the romanized version of the place name is a French transcription of the pronunciation of the name. Thus, one has to take an additional step in order to figure out what the modern Turkish form would be. Akbayar is more comprehensive than Mostras but is likely less so than Sezen. Its entries resemble those of a book index. The bibliography appears to be quite useful, and there is surprisingly little overlap with that of Sezen. Both Mostras and Akbayar provide variant names in the entries; if Sezen does, it was not readily apparent from the quick examination undertaken. On the negative side, Akbayar provides very little chronological information for the Ottoman period—changes in status or administration do not appear to be given for the 600 years of the empire, although he does note when the status of a place changes during the Republican period. Sezen appears to have the most comprehensive listing of place names, but its tabular form is the least user-friendly of the three works. Sezen is the only one to indicate changes in status and the dates when these changes occur. All three works would have been greatly improved by detailed maps showing the places listed. For anyone looking at the geographical distribution of name changes, Nişanyan is best as its organization permits comparison of place name changes by province. On the other hand, since the focus of the book is on those places that changed names, it does not provide a comprehensive listing of place names. Sahillerimizde bulunan mevkilerle liman ve sairenin ismlerini gösterir lûgatçe includes such information as non-inhabited geographical features, but is limited to the coasts of the Turkish Republic.

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