By Jerry Brotton
The attention-grabbing tale of Queen Elizabeth’s mystery alliance with the Ottoman sultan and outreach to the Muslim international by way of The ny Times bestselling writer of A heritage of the realm in Twelve Maps (published within the united kingdom as This Orient Isle)
"An illuminating account of a ignored element of Elizabethan England: its wealthy, complicated, and ambivalent kin with the Muslim world. The Sultan and the Queen is a desirable and well timed book."
—Stephen Greenblatt, writer of The Swerve
Long prior to Thomas Jefferson faced the Barbary Pirates, Queen Elizabeth despatched a mystery message to the Ottoman Sultan Murad III, inviting him to open his markets to her retailers. Islam and the West crossed paths a lot previous to we think—and initially the Muslims had the higher hand.
When Elizabeth used to be excommunicated by way of the pope in 1570, she discovered herself in a clumsy crisis. England had continuously relied on exchange. Now its key markets have been without notice closed to her Protestant retailers, whereas the staunchly Catholic king of Spain vowed to take her throne. In a daring selection with far-reaching effects, she set her attractions at the Muslim powers. She despatched an emissary to the shah of Iran, wooed the king of Morocco, and entered into an remarkable alliance with the strong Ottoman, atmosphere the level for England's transformation from a peripheral participant at the chilly fringes of Europe to the hub of a world empire.
through the overdue 1580s 1000's, possibly millions, of Elizabethan retailers, diplomats, sailors, artisans and privateers have been plying their exchange from Morocco to Persia. those integrated the innovative mercer Anthony Jenkinson, who met either Suleyman and the amazing and the Persian Sah Tahmasp within the 1560s, William Harborne, the Norfolk service provider who turned the 1st English ambassador to the Ottoman courtroom in 1582, and the adventurer Sir Anthony Sherley, who spent a lot of 1600 on the courtroom of Shah Abbas.
This marked the start of a unprecedented alignment with Muslim powers and of financial and political exchanges with the Islamic global of a intensity now not back skilled until eventually the fashionable age. through the past due 1580s, hundreds of thousands of English retailers, diplomats, sailors, and privateers have been plying their exchange from Morocco to Persia. To finance those expeditions, they created the 1st ever joint inventory corporation, a progressive new enterprise version that balanced chance and reward.
Londoners have been gripped with a keenness for the Orient. Elizabeth grew to become addicted to sugar as new phrases like candy, turquoise, and tulip entered the English language. Marlowe provided up Tamburlaine and Shakespeare wrote Othello six months after the 1st Moroccan ambassador’s stopover at. Jerry Brotton finds that Elizabethan England’s courting with the Muslim international used to be way more amicable—and way more extensive—than we've ever favored as he tells the riveting tale of the investors and adventurers who first went East to hunt their fortunes.
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Additional resources for The Sultan and the Queen: The Untold Story of Elizabeth and Islam
Her short-lived restoration of Catholicism would forever pale in comparison with her half sister Elizabeth’s forty-five-year Protestant reign, which became a touchstone of English national identity. For centuries Mary was condemned as a religious zealot who had pursued a murderous crusade against Protestants and prepared to sacrifice her crown to the Spanish Catholics rather than see the Reformation triumph in England. 32 Although she passed legislation relinquishing her title as head of the church and giving the pope jurisdiction over English ecclesiastical matters, Mary maintained a clear distinction between her religious and secular power.
Bodin ridiculed the suggestion that the Spanish Empire could maintain the imperial mantle of ancient Rome, arguing that “if there is anywhere in the world any majesty of empire and of true monarchy, it must radiate from the [Ottoman] sultan. ”15 Bodin knew that history offered many examples of Christian states forging alliances with the Ottomans. After the fall of Constantinople in 1453, the Venetians agreed to mutually beneficial commercial treaties with Sultan Mehmed II, and in 1536 the French king Francis I forged a formal alliance with Sultan Süleyman I to confront their common enemy Charles V.
To the south Portugal monopolized Africa and the eastern trade routes, objecting when English merchants sought to establish trade with Morocco and Guinea. And to the east the overland route to Asia lay in the hands of the Ottomans. In 1527 Robert Thorne, an English merchant based in Seville, advised Henry that the only way to outmaneuver his imperial rivals and reach the Spice Islands in Indonesia was to order his merchants to sail north. ” He speculated that the northern polar region contained a navigable temperate belt beyond the freezing Norwegian seas.