Following the Footsteps of Travelers… We Host Secret Witnesses of History !

This digital exhibition was created using a selection of travel books that constitute an important part of the rare collections in Koç University libraries and from engravings in Ankara Photo Postcard and Engraving Collection. We invite you to Koç University Libraries to discover our unique travel books after the pandemic.

The four epistles of A.G. Busbequius, concerning his embassy into Turkey : being remarks upon the religion, customs, riches, strength, and government of the people. As also a description of their chief cities, and places of trade and commerce. To which is added his advice how to manage war against the Turks.

Flemenk Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq, who was the Austrian ambassador during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent and also a medicinal herbalist, made the 16th century Ottoman Empire known, especially to Istanbul, with his observations and travels [1].

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Ankara Engraving

At the beginning of the 18th century, the French Naturalist Joseph Pitton de Tournefort was sent to the East to this is correct but a better word is conduct botanical research.  On his trip, Tournefort was accompanied by the German botanist Andreas Gundelsheimer and artist Claude Aubriet [2].

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Temple of Augustus Engraving

During his trip to Ankara, Tournefort observes and documents important information about several topics: the Angora Goat, the Julien Column, the Augustos Temple and more

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A voyage into the Levant / Joseph Pitton de Tournefort ; Translator Ozell John.

From the “A voyage into the Levant” book

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From the Suna Kıraç Library Rare Collection Rooms

During the Ottoman Empire, many people from different areas from Europe traveled to Turkey, namely the East. Soldiers, writers, economists, doctors, naturalists, artists…They came to Turkey from many different countries and for different purposes. They opened the door to a different world by writing about or drawing everything they saw, ate, found while travelling

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Turkey and the Turks : an account of the lands, the peoples, and the institutions of the Ottoman Empire / by W. S. Monroe.

Turkey and the Turks : an account of the lands, the peoples, and the institutions of the Ottoman Empire / by W. S. Monroe.

American educator Will S. Monroe, in his travel and research article written in the late 1800s, discussed about the daily life in Istanbul and ethnic elements in the Ottoman Empire [3].

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La Turquie d’Asie: géographie administrative, statistique, descriptive et raisonnée de chaque province de l’Asie-Mineure/ Vital Cuinet.

La Turquie d’Asie: géographie administrative, statistique, descriptive et raisonnée de chaque province de l’Asie-Mineure/ Vital Cuinet.

Vital Cuinet was a French geographer and orientalist. As the General Secretary of the General Public Administration between the years 1880-1892, he visited Anatolia and examined the socio-economic, demographic and administrative structure of the Ottoman Empire [4]. Cuinet documented his travelling experiences in his work [5].

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Constantinople : tourists’ guide / Ernest Mamboury.

Constantinople : tourists’ guide / Ernest Mamboury.

The Swiss scientist and painter Ernest Mamboury, who worked on Byzantine art and architecture in Istanbul, wrote her first guide about Istanbul in 1925 [6].

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Photos from Koç University Libraries Rare  Book Collections Rooms ..

From the Suna Kıraç Library Rare Collection Rooms

From the AKMED Rare Collection Rooms

References:

1) Busbecq Mektupları, https://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/T%C3%BCrk_Mektuplar%C4%B1

2) Tournefort, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Pitton_de_Tournefort

3) Will, S. Monroe, Artam Müzayede, https://artam.com/muzayede/343-nadir-kitap-muzayedesi/monroe-will-seymour-turkey-and-the-turks-an-account-of-the-lands-the-peoples-and-the-institutions-of-the-ottoman-empire

4) Atam, Ş. (2020). Vital Cuinet’e Göre XIX. Yüzyıl Sonlarında Balıkesir’in İdari, Demografik ve Sosyo-Ekonomik Yapısı, Manisa Celal Bayar Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi, 18(4), 369-392.

5) Vital Cuinet, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vital_Cuinet

6) Ernest Mamboury, https://islamansiklopedisi.org.tr/mamboury-ernest