Turkey Essay

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Then came the Ottoman Empire which made an impact on the course of world history. This empire came to life in the late 13th century as a small Turkish principality near Bursa on the northwestern frontier of the Anatolian Seljuk Empire and gradually found its place in history as one of the great empires of Renaissance Europe. The Ottoman Empire reached its zenith in the 17th century. By that time it covered Asia Minor, the Crimea, the Caucasus, Mesopotamia, the Middle East, North Africa, and the Balkans. The Ottoman Empire followed in the footsteps of its ancestors and set up a system based on tolerance for the many differences among its subjects. This cultural and religious tolerance and goodwill is best manifested in the reception of Jews fleeing the Inquisition in the 15th century. It was due to this exceptional system assuring stability and tolerance, and freedom of conscience that the Empire was able to hold together people of different religions, languages and races, and also succeeded in protecting and preserving different cultures and languages. Today, that tradition of tolerance and harmony lives on in modern Turkey, being enriched as time passes. The Republic of Turkey was built on the ashes of the Ottoman Empire which ceased to exist at about the same time the Austro-Hungarian and Russian empires ended in the wake of the First World War. The Republic of Turkey was founded by and on the inspiring ideals of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, one of the greatest leaders of this century. After the Republic was proclaimed in 1923, a program of far-reaching structural reforms was put into motion, aiming to better meet the challenges of the modern world. Despite the more immediate tasks at hand related to this social reorganization, the Republic did not neglect Anatolia's heritage and worked towards a synthesis of the cultures of different civilizations and peoples, adhering

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