Famous Turkish Emperors & Kings

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 1 
Suleiman The Magnificent
(10th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Suleiman The Magnificent
67
Birthdate: November 6, 1494
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Trabzon, Turkey
Died: September 6, 1566
Suleiman The Magnificent ruled the Ottoman Empire from 1520 to 1566 and was instrumental in the empire’s expansion, leading the conquests of Belgrade, Rhodes, and Hungary. He was a patron of art and culture, and a talented poet and goldsmith himself. He married Roxelana, a Christian-turned-Muslim from his harem.
 2 
Mehmed II
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Mehmed II
33
Birthdate: March 30, 1432
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Edirne, Rumelia Eyalet, Ottoman Sultanate
Died: May 3, 1481

Mehmed II reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire on two separate occasions; from 1444 to 1446 and again from 1451 to 1481. During his first reign, Mehmed II defeated the military expedition led by John Hunyadi. During his second reign, Mehmed II strengthened the Ottoman navy and conquered Constantinople at age 21, which ended the Byzantine Empire. 

 3 
Osman I
(Political Leader)
Osman I
21
Birthdate: 1258 AD
Birthplace: Söğüt, Turkey
Died: August 1, 1326

Osman I was the founder of the Ottoman dynasty, which ruled the Ottoman Empire between 1299 and 1922. One of the most important historical figures in Turkey, Osman I is often depicted in popular culture. Interestingly, he is also one of the least documented leaders of the Ottoman Turks, making the factual information of his biographies questionable.

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 4 
Mahmud of Ghazni
(Sultan of the Ghaznavid Empire from 998 to 1030)
Mahmud of Ghazni
19
Birthdate: November 2, 0971
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Ghazni, Afghanistan
Died: April 30, 1030

Mahmud of Ghazni was the sultan of the Ghaznavid Empire on two separate occasions. He first ascended the throne upon the death of his father, Mahmud, in 1030. However, he was soon overthrown by his twin brother Ma'sud I. Years later, he was reinstated as sultan but was soon executed by his nephew Maw'dud. His entire family was also killed. 

 5 
Abdul Hamid II
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Abdul Hamid II
18
Birthdate: September 21, 1842
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Istanbul Eyalet
Died: February 10, 1918
 6 
Ahmed I
(Ottoman Emperor)
Ahmed I
28
Birthdate: April 18, 1590
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Manisa, Turkey
Died: November 22, 1617
Ahmed I reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1603 till 1617. He ended the Ottoman tradition of royal fratricide upon taking over the throne. He constructed the iconic Blue Mosque of Turkey. He also patronized art, especially calligraphy, and wrote poems under the pseudonym Bahti.
 7 
Selim I
(ottoman Sultan)
Selim I
7
Birthdate: October 10, 1470
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Amasya, Ottoman Empire, Turkey
Died: September 22, 1520

Selim I reigned as the ninth Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. Although his reign lasted only eight years, Selim I is credited for the vast expansion of the Ottoman Empire; his conquest of the entire Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt is widely regarded as his best achievement. A hardworking ruler, Selim was one of the most respected emperors of the Empire.

 8 
Constantine XI Palaiologos
(The Last Byzantine Ruler Who Died Defending Constantinople against the Turks)
Constantine XI Palaiologos
8
Birthdate: February 8, 1405
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Istanbul, Turkey
Died: May 29, 1453

The fourth son of Emperor Manuel II, Constantine XI Palaiologos was the last Byzantine emperor. He died in combat, while defending the city of Constantinople against the Ottoman Turks. In Greek folklore, he is known as the Marble Emperor, referring to a legend that he had turned into marble after his death.

 9 
Caracalla
(Roman emperor)
Caracalla
11
Birthdate: April 4, 0188
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lugdunum
Died: April 8, 0217
 10 
Murad III
(Ottoman Sultan)
Murad III
5
Birthdate: July 4, 1546
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Manisa, Turkey
Died: December 31, 1595
Murad III, son of Şehzade Selim and Nurbanu Sultan, was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1574 to 1595. He was dominated by his mother and his harem, particularly by his favorite wife, Safiye Sultan. He also fought wars with the Safavid Empire and was an art connoisseur.
 11 
Selim II
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Selim II
7
Birthdate: May 28, 1524
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Topkapi Palace Museum, İstanbul, Turkey
Died: December 15, 1574

Known as a generous Ottoman monarch, Selim II was the successor of the empire’s longest-reigning sultan, Suleiman I. His reign saw his navy decisively defeated by the Holy League in the Battle of Lepanto before the Ottomans regained control of Tunis from Spain. Selim, who was married to Nurbanu Sultan, was noted for helping his subjects during a severe famine.

 12 
Mehmed III
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (1595-1603))
Mehmed III
5
Birthdate: May 26, 1566
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Manisa, Turkey
Died: December 22, 1603

Mehmed III reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 16 January 1595 until his death on 22 December 1603. He is best remembered for his role in the Long Turkish War, where he successfully led his army at the all-important Battle of Keresztes. Also remembered for his diplomacy, Mehmed III established communications with the court of Elizabeth I. 

 13 
Mehmed IV
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Mehmed IV
5
Birthdate: January 2, 1642
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Topkapı Palace, Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
Died: January 6, 1693

Mehmed IV reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 8 August 1648 to 8 November 1687. After ascending the throne at age six following the dethronement of his father in a coup, Mehmed IV went on to become the second-longest reigning emperor in the history of the Ottoman Empire after Suleiman the Magnificent.

 14 
Murad II
(Ottoman Sultan)
Murad II
4
Birthdate: 1404
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Amasya
Died: February 3, 1451
 15 
Bayezid I
(Sultan of Ottoman Empire)
Bayezid I
4
Birthdate: 1354 AD
Birthplace: Edirne, Turkey
Died: March 8, 1403

Bayezid I reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1389 to 1402. He is credited with building one of the largest armies of the world, with which he defeated the Crusaders at Nicopolis in 1396. His only defeat at the Battle of Ankara, which turned out to be fatal, became a subject for writers, painters, and composers.

 16 
Ibrahim of the Ottoman Empire
(Sultan)
Ibrahim of the Ottoman Empire
12
Birthdate: November 4, 1615
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: İstanbul, Turkey
Died: August 18, 1648
 17 
Mehmed V
(Ottoman King)
Mehmed V
9
Birthdate: November 2, 1844
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Topkapi Palace Museum, İstanbul, Turkey
Died: July 3, 1918

Mehmed V was the 35th and penultimate Ottoman Sultan who reigned from 1909 to 1918. One of the sons of Sultan Abdulmejid I, he succeeded his brother Abdul Hamid II after the Young Turk revolution. His reign was marked by the loss of the empire’s many territories and witnessed the Ottoman Empire’s entry into World War I.

 18 
Mahmud II
(Sultan of Ottoman Empire)
Mahmud II
4
Birthdate: July 20, 1785
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: İstanbul, Turkey
Died: July 1, 1839

Mahmud II reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1808 to 1839. His reign was marked by the extensive military, administrative, and fiscal reforms which he initiated. The reforms that he initiated eventually led to the formation of the modern Turkish Republic. He is also credited with rebuilding a strong naval force for the empire.

 19 
Abdülmecid I
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Abdülmecid I
5
Birthdate: April 23, 1823
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: İstanbul Eyaleti
Died: June 25, 1861

Abdülmecid I reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 2 July 1839 until his death on 25 June 1861. During his reign, Abdülmecid I tried to set up alliances with France and the United Kingdom. He also played an important role in the Crimean War against the Russians.

 20 
Mehmed VI
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1918 to 1922)
Mehmed VI
11
Birthdate: March 30, 1861
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: İstanbul, Turkey
Died: May 16, 1926

Mehmed VI was the last Sultan of the famous Ottoman Empire. He reigned from 1918 to 1922 before the empire was dissolved, making way for the creation of the Republic of Turkey. Apart from ruling the Ottoman Empire, Mehmed VI also enjoyed music, calligraphy, and writing poems. In 1922, he stepped down, enabling the abolition of the Ottoman Sultanate.

 21 
Mehmed I
(Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Mehmed I
4
Birthdate: 1389 AD
Birthplace: Bursa, Turkey
Died: May 26, 1421

Mehmed I reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 5 July 1413 until his death on 26 May 1421. Prior to his reign as the emperor of the Ottoman Empire, Mehmed I ruled as the Sultan of Anatolia from 1403 to 1413. Nicknamed The Restorer, Mehmed I is credited with re-establishing central authority in Anatolia.

 22 
Murad I
(Ottoman prince)
Murad I
4
Birthdate: June 29, 1326
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bursa, Turkey
Died: June 15, 1389
 23 
Orhan
(The 2nd ruler of the Ottoman Dynasty)
Orhan
3
Birthdate: 1281 AD
Birthplace: Söğüt, Turkey
Died: February 29, 1362
Ottoman sultan Orhan I was the 2nd ruler of the Ottoman dynasty and the son of Osman I, the founder of the dynasty. He spent most of his reign trying to capture the regions of Anatolia occupied by the Byzantines. He built mosques and theological institutes, too.
 24 
Alexios I Komnenos
(Emperor)
Alexios I Komnenos
4
Birthdate: 1048 AD
Birthplace: Constantinople, Turkey
Died: August 15, 1118
 25 
Heraclius
(Emperor of Byzantine Empire)
Heraclius
10
Birthdate: 0575 AD
Birthplace: Cappadocia, present-day Turkey
Died: February 11, 0641

A skilled military leader, Heraclius was also deeply religious, having once read out passages from the Bible when his men wanted to invade Persia. He also treated his prisoners with respect. He is best remembered for his exploits in the Byzantine–Sasanian War and his clashes with the Arabs.

 26 
Julian
(Roman emperor)
Julian
6
Birthdate: 0331 AD
Birthplace: Istanbul, Turkey
Died: June 26, 0363
 27 
Bayezid II
(Sultan)
Bayezid II
4
Birthdate: December 3, 1447
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Didymoteicho
Died: May 26, 1512
 28 
Zeno
(Roman Emperor of the East)
Zeno
3
Birthdate: 0425 AD
Birthplace: Zenonopolis
Died: April 9, 0491

Zeno reigned as the Roman emperor of the East on two separate occasions; from 474 to 475 and again from 476 to 491. His reign marked the end of the Western Roman Empire after the deposition of Romulus Augustus. However, Zeno is credited with stabilizing the Eastern Empire.

 29 
Honorius
(Roman Emperor from 393 to 423)
Honorius
4
Birthdate: September 9, 0384
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Istanbul, Turkey
Died: August 15, 0423
 30 
Selim III
(The Ottoman Empire's 28th Sultan)
Selim III
3
Birthdate: December 24, 1761
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: July 28, 1808

The 28th sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Selim III was a ruler who believed in modern reforms. A talented poet and composer of Ottoman music, he introduced the nizam-ı cedid, a set of new reforms. He redefined his kingdom’s military strategies and taxation system and launched embassies in Europe.

 31 
Basil II
(Byzantine Emperor)
Basil II
7
Birthdate: 0958 AD
Birthplace: Constantinople, Byzantine Empire
Died: December 15, 1025

Basil II reigned as the emperor of the Byzantine Empire from 976 until his death in 1025. He supervised the expansion of the empire's eastern frontier. He was also instrumental in annexing part of Crimea and conducted several victorious campaigns against the Kingdom of Georgia. His work as emperor ensured that the Empire flourished several years after his death.

 32 
Murad V
(Sultan)
Murad V
4
Birthdate: September 21, 1840
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Beşiktaş, Istanbul
Died: August 29, 1904
Hussein bin Ali Sharif of Mecca
7
Birthdate: 1853 AD
Birthplace: Istanbul, Turkey
Died: June 4, 1931
Hussein bin Ali Sharif had been the emir of Mecca and the king of Hejaz. While leading the Arab rebellion against the Ottomans, he had declared himself the “king of the Arab countries.” Later, he proclaimed himself the caliph but had to abdicate in the face of Ibn Saud’s attack.
 34 
Justinian II
(The Heraclian Dynasty's Last Eastern Roman Emperor)
Justinian II
3
Birthdate: 0669 AD
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: December 11, 0711

Ancient Byzantine emperor Justinian II was the son of Constantine IV and an efficient ruler, though he was also known for his cruel ways and means. He was also known as Rhinotmetos, or the slit-nosed, after his nose was cut off during a revolt in 695, following which he was banished from the kingdom.

 35 
Abdul Hamid I
(Emperor)
Abdul Hamid I
3
Birthdate: March 20, 1725
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Topkapi Palace Museum, İstanbul, Turkey
Died: April 7, 1789
 36 
Arcadius
(Roman Emperor)
Arcadius
4
Birthdate: January 1, 0377
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Hispania
Died: May 1, 0408
 37 
Mahmud I
(The 24th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Mahmud I
4
Birthdate: August 2, 1696
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Edirne
Died: December 13, 1754

The 24th sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Mahmud I was the son of Mustafa II. Known for his friendly relationships with the Mughal and Safavid empires, he also fought against Austria and Russia in a war that ended in the Treaty of Belgrade. He is remembered for restoring peace after the Patrona Halil uprising.

 38 
Ahmed III
(Sultan)
Ahmed III
4
Birthdate: December 30, 1673
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Dobrich, Bulgaria
Died: July 1, 1736
 39 
Justin I
(Byzantine Emperor (518–527))
Justin I
3
Birthdate: February 2, 0450
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Skopje, North Macedonia
Died: August 1, 0527
 40 
Leo III the Isaurian
(Emperor)
Leo III the Isaurian
3
Birthdate: 0685 AD
Birthplace: Kahramanmaraş, Turkey
Died: June 18, 0741
 41 
Dündar Aliosman
(Ruler)
Dündar Aliosman
3
Birthdate: December 30, 1930
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
 42 
Theodosius II
(Roman Emperor of the 5th Century)
Theodosius II
3
Birthdate: April 10, 0401
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Istanbul
Died: July 28, 0450

Roman emperor of the East in the 5th century, Theodosius II was declared co-augustus at the age of 9 months by his father, Arcadius. He became an emperor at age 7. Known as gentle, he was mostly dominated by his ministers but also led campaigns against the Persians, the Huns, and the Vandals.

 43 
Constantine VII
(Emperor)
Constantine VII
4
Birthdate: May 18, 0905
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Constantinople, Turkey
Died: November 9, 0959
 44 
Michael VIII Palaiologos
(Byzantine Emperor from 1261 to 1282)
Michael VIII Palaiologos
3
Birthdate: 1223 AD
Birthplace: Empire of Nicaea
Died: December 11, 1282
 45 
Basil I
(Emperor)
Basil I
3
Birthdate: 0811 AD
Birthplace: Macedonia
Died: August 29, 0886
 46 
Mustafa III
(Sultan)
Mustafa III
3
Birthdate: January 28, 1717
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: January 21, 1774
 47 
Ahmed II
(The 21st Sultan of the Ottoman Empire)
Ahmed II
3
Birthdate: February 25, 1643
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Topkapı Palace, Istanbul
Died: February 6, 1695

The 21st sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Ahmed II reigned in the 17th century. He spent most of his reign in campaigns against the Holy League of Austria, Venice, and Poland. He faced significant Arab unrest and encouraged settlements of nomadic Turkmen tribes. He was also mostly dominated by his courtiers.

 48 
Phocas
(Eastern Roman emperor from 602 to 610)
Phocas
3
Birthdate: 0547 AD
Birthplace: Thracia, Turkey
Died: 0610 AD
 49 
Mustafa IV
(Sultan)
Mustafa IV
4
Birthdate: September 8, 1779
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Istanbul
Died: November 17, 1808
 50 
Mithridates VI of Pontus
(King of Pontus from 120 BC to 63 BC)
Mithridates VI of Pontus
2
Birthdate: 0135 AD
Birthplace: Sinop, Turkey
Died: 0063 AD

Mithridates VI of Pontus, also known as Mithridates the Great, came to power as a young boy after his father, Mithridates V, was assassinated by poisoning. However, since Mithridates VI’s mother acted as a regent and favored his brother, Mithridates got them both imprisoned and took over the throne.