Turkish Royal history
Yesterday, I was watching a history show, which is one of my favorite shows. Historians gather and talk about the past. They show real documents and always have very interesting guests. It was interesting to see “Princess Hanzade Özbaş” on air. She is the great grand daughter of the latest heir to the Ottoman Empire. Her great grandfather Sultan Vahdettin had been pictured as a traitor in Turkish history books.
She explained how difficult history class had been for her as a child. Her teacher was making her, read out loudly the passage that explains what a traitor, a terrible person Sultan Vahdettin was. Of course being only a little girl, she ran out of class crying;
“My Grandfather is not a traitor!”
It is very well acknowledged by historians now that he was never a traitor, yet I am not sure if they changed the context of school books. Either way, it was ridiculous of her teacher, to torture a little girl like that, knowing who she is. Although she was living with her grandmother “Who in fact, is Ottoman History” little Princess Hanzade kept failing Ottoman History classes throughout high-school. She went to college abroad.
It had been a littler easier for her daughter Neslişah Evliyazade. She says, it feels interesting to realize that her grand parents lived at the Dolmabahçe palace which she only gets to visit like a regular tourist. Although, the family has no influence or title anymore, they represent Turkish royalty and set an example of the traditions of Turkish aristocracy.
Princess Neslişah explained in one interview that the importance of education preceded everything. Ladies of the royal family were very well educated; they spoke minimum three foreign languages. Sultan Vahdettin’s grand daughters supported themselves through working hard, as everything was taken away from them. Unfortunately the princes were unable to do so, as most had been educated by the military, to become great soldiers, which left them unqualified to find immediate jobs while in exile.
Princess Hanzade’s mother met her husband while she was an instructor at Princeton University in America during World War II. Her husband was teaching at Princeton just like her. He was Turkish as well, although not royal, he came from a very wealthy family.