[AUSPICIOUS INCIDENT: THE EARLIEST ACCOUNT OF THE 'VAKA-YI HAYRIYYE' IN 1826 - REVOLTS & DISBANDMENT OF THE JANISSARIES] Üss-i zafer 1241. [i.e. The principle of victory 1826].
SAHHAFLAR SEYHIZÂDE MEHMED ES'AD EFENDI, (1789-1848).
Matbaa-i Âmire., Kostantiniyye [Constantinople - Istanbul], [AH 1243] = 1828.
Original full brown morocco in its period with a flap. Decorative embossed flowers on boards, and lines on borders. Minimal wear on the spine. Demy 8vo. (22 x 15,5 cm). In Ottoman script (Turkish with Arabic letters). , , 259,  p. Calligraphic title 'Üss-i zafer 1241' in ornamental sarlavha (head). It starts with basmalah, and a long eulogy to Sultan Mahmud II. Traditional framed text. Book design in the style seen in the transition period from manuscript to printing. An early printed book on fine paper. This is the earliest account of Sultan Mahmud II's disbandment of Janissaries in 1826 written by Ottoman 'vak'anuvis' [i.e. chronicler, or, historian], and the minister of Takvîm-i Vekâyi which is the first formal Ottoman newspaper, Sahhaflar Seyhizâde Mehmed Es'ad Efendi, (1789-1848). He was the son of a bookseller and lately the president of the Ottoman booksellers' guild. His father died in 1804 when the ship on which they were traveling sank in Suez when he was appointed as the qadi [i.e. judge] of Medina. When Esad Efendi presented the manuscripts of his work called Üss-i Zafer, he was given the rank of the foundation's inspectorate and 'Üsküdar Mahreci'. The Auspicious Incident (or Event), Vaka-i Hayriye, "Fortunate Event"; (in the Balkans) Vaka-i Şerriyye, "Unfortunate Incident") was the forced disbandment of the centuries-old Janissary corps by Sultan Mahmud II, (1785-1839), on 15 June 1826. Most of the 135,000 Janissaries revolted against Mahmud II, and after the rebellion was suppressed, its leaders were killed, and many of its members exiled or imprisoned, the Janissary corps was disbanded and replaced with a more modern military force. By the early 17th century the Janissary corps had ceased to function as an elite military force and had become a privileged hereditary class, and their exemption from paying taxes made them highly unfavorable in the eyes of the rest of the population. The number of Janissaries grew from 20,000 in 1575 to 135,000 in 1826, about 250 years later. Many were not soldiers but still collected pay from the empire, as dictated by the corps since it held an effective veto over the state and contributed to the steady decline of the Ottoman Empire. Any sultan who tried to diminish its status or power was immediately either killed or deposed. When Mahmud II began forming a new army and hiring European gunners, the Janissaries mutinied as usual and fought on the streets of the Ottoman capital, but the militarily superior Sipahis charged and forced them back into their barracks. Turkish historians claim that the counter-Janissary force, which was great in numbers, included the local residents who had hated the Janissaries for years. Historians suggest that Mahmud II purposely incited the revolt and have described it as the sultan's "coup against the Janissaries". The sultan informed them that he was forming a new army, the Sekban-ı Cedit, organized and trained along modern European lines (and that the new army would be Turkish–dominated). The Janissaries saw their institution as crucial to the well-being of the Ottoman Empire, especially to Rumelia, and had previously decided they would never allow its dissolution. Thus, as predicted, they mutinied, advancing on the sultan's palace. Mahmud II then brought out the Holy Banner of the Prophet Muhammad from inside the Sacred Trust, intending all true believers to gather beneath it and thus bolster opposition to the Janissaries. In the ensuing fight the Janissary barracks were set ablaze by artillery fire, resulting in 4,000 Janissary deaths; more were killed in the heavy fighting on the streets of Constantinople. The survivors either fled or were imprisoned, their possessions confiscated by the Sultan. By the end of 1826 the captured Janissaries, constituting the remainder of the force, were put to death by decapitation in the Thessaloniki fort that soon came to be called the "Bloody Tower" (but which has been known since 1912 as the White Tower). Roughly 100 other Janissaries fled to the Cistern of Philoxenos where many drowned. Özege 22434.; OCLC 13900808, 838101965. Rare First Edition.