Ahmed II

Ahmed II (Ottoman Turkish: احمد ثانیAḥmed-i sānī) (25 February 1643 or 1 August 1642[1] – 6 February 1695) was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1691 to 1695.

Ahmed II
احمد ثانى
Kayser-i Rûm
Amir al-Mu'minin
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques
Ottoman Caliph
Ahmet II.jpg
21st Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (Padishah)
Reign22 June 1691 – 6 February 1695
PredecessorSuleiman II
SuccessorMustafa II
Born25 February 1643
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
(present day Istanbul, Turkey)
Died6 February 1695(1695-02-06) (aged 51)
Edirne, Ottoman Empire
(present day Edirne, Turkey)
ConsortRabia Sultan
IssueŞehzade Ibrahim
Şehzade Selim
Asiye Sultan
Ahmed bin Ibrahim
MotherMuazzez Sultan
ReligionSunni Islam
TughraAhmed II احمد ثانى's signature

Early lifeEdit

Ahmed II was born on 25 February 1643 or 1 August 1642, the son of Sultan Ibrahim and Muazzez Sultan. On 21 October 1649, Ahmed along with his brothers Mehmed and Suleiman were circumcised. [2]

During the reigns of his older brothers, Ahmed was imprisoned in Kafes, and he stayed there almost 43 years.

The mausoleum of Ahmed II is located inside the türbe of Suleiman the Magnificent. (In the above picture, his tomb is seen side by side with Suleiman II and Suleiman the Magnificent).


During his reign, Sultan Ahmed II devoted most of his attention to the wars against the Habsburgs and related foreign policy, governmental and economic issues. Of these, the most important were the tax reforms and the introduction of the lifelong tax farm system (malikane) (see tax farming). Following the recovery of Belgrade under his predecessor, Suleiman II, the military frontier reached a rough stalemate on the Danube, with the Habsburgs no longer able to advance south of it, and the Ottomans attempting, ultimately unsuccessfully, to regain the initiative north of it.

Among the most important features of Ahmed's reign was his reliance on Köprülüzade Fazıl Mustafa Pasha. Following his accession to the throne, Sultan Ahmed II confirmed Köprülüzade Fazıl Mustafa Pasha in his office as grand vizier. In office from 1689, Fazıl Mustafa Pasha was from the Köprülü family of grand viziers, and like most of his Köprülü predecessors in the same office, was an able administrator and military commander. Like his father Köprülü Mehmed Pasha (grand vizier 1656–61) before him, he ordered the removal and execution of dozens of corrupt state officials of the previous regime and replaced them with men loyal to himself. He overhauled the tax system by adjusting it to the capabilities of the taxpayers affected by the latest wars. He also reformed troop mobilization and increased the pool of conscripts available for the army by drafting tribesmen in the Balkans and Anatolia. In October 1690 he recaptured Belgrade, a key fortress that commanded the confluence of the rivers Danube and Sava; in Ottoman hands since 1521, the fortress had been conquered by the Habsburgs in 1688.

Fazıl Mustafa Pasha's victory at Belgrade was a major military achievement that gave the Ottomans hope that the military debacles of the 1680s—which had led to the loss of Hungary and Transylvania, an Ottoman vassal principality ruled by pro-Istanbul Hungarian princes— could be reversed. However, the Ottoman success proved ephemeral. On 19 August 1691, Fazıl Mustafa Pasha suffered a devastating defeat at the Battle of Slankamen at the hands of Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden, the Habsburg commander in chief in Hungary, nicknamed “Türkenlouis” (Louis the Turk) for his victories against the Ottomans. In the confrontation, recognized by contemporaries as “the bloodiest battle of the century,” the Ottomans suffered heavy losses: 20,000 men, including the grand vizier. With him, the sultan lost his most capable military commander and the last member of the Köprülü family, who for the previous half century had been instrumental in strengthening the Ottoman military.

Under Fazıl Mustafa Pasha's successors, the Ottomans suffered further defeats. In June 1692 the Habsburgs conquered Várad (Oradea, Romania), the seat of an Ottoman governor (beylerbeyi) since 1660. In 1694 they attempted to recapture Várad, but to no avail. On 12 January 1695, they surrendered the fortress of Gyula, the center of an Ottoman sanjak or subprovince since 1566. With the fall of Gyula, the only territory still in Ottoman hands in Hungary was to the east of the River Tisza and to the south of the river Maros, with its center at Temesvár. Three weeks later, on 6 February 1695, Ahmed II died in Edirne Palace.


  • Şehzade Ibrahim (Edirne Palace, Edirne, 6 October 1692[4] – Topkapı Palace, Istanbul, 4 May 1714, buried in Mustafa I Mausoleum, Hagia Sophia), with Rabia Sultan, twin with Selim, became Crown Prince on 22 August 1703;
  • Şehzade Selim (Edirne Palace, Edirne, 6 October 1692 – Edirne Palace, Edirne, 15 May 1693, buried in Sultan Mustafa Mausoleum, Hagia Sophia), with Rabia Sultan, twin with Ibrahim.[4]
  • Asiye Sultan[5] (Edirne Palace, Edirne, 23 October 1694[4] – Eski Palace, Bayezid, Istanbul, 9 December 1695, buried in Suleiman I Mausoleum, Süleymaniye Mosque), with Rabia Sultan;


  1. ^ Mantran 2012, first date according to Naima, second date to Raşid.
  2. ^ Sakaoğlu 2007, p. 271.
  3. ^ Uluçay 1980, p. 114.
  4. ^ a b c Mehmed Agha 2012, pp. 1466-67, 1483-84, 1580.
  5. ^ Uluçay 1980, p. 115.

Works citedEdit

  • Mantran, R. (24 April 2012). Bearman, P.; Bianquis, Th.; Bosworth, C.E.; van Donzel, E.; Heinrichs, W.P. (eds.). "Aḥmad II". Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. doi:10.1163/1573-3912_islam_sim_0389.
  • Mehmed Agha, Silahdar Findiklili (2012). ZEYL-İ FEZLEKE (1065-22 Ca.1106 / 1654-7 Şubat 1695). pp. 1466–67, 1483–84, 1580.
  • Uluçay, M. Çağatay (1980). Padişahların kadınları ve kızları (in Turkish). Türk Tarih Kurumu Basımevi. Retrieved 7 October 2020.

Further readingEdit

  • Finkel, Caroline (2005). Osman's Dream: The Story of the Ottoman Empire, 1300-1923. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 978-0-465-02396-7.
  • Michael Hochendlinger, Austria's Wars of Emergence: War, State and Society in the Habsburg Monarchy, 1683–1797 (London: Longman, 2003), 157–64.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Ahmed II at Wikimedia Commons

  Works written by or about Ahmed II at Wikisource

Ahmed II
Born: 25 February 1643 Died: 6 February 1695
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Suleiman II
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
22 June 1691 – 6 February 1695
Succeeded by
Mustafa II
Sunni Islam titles
Preceded by
Suleiman II
Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate
22 June 1691 – 6 February 1695
Succeeded by
Mustafa II