For other people and places called "Turks" in Harry Turtledove's work, see: Turks (Disambiguation)
Continent: Asia (majority) and Europe (minority)
Capital: Ankara
National Language: Turkish
Government: Unitary presidential constitutional republic
Status in OTL: Active

The Republic of Turkey is a Eurasian country that stretches across the Anatolian peninsula in western Asia and Thrace in the Balkans region of southeastern Europe. It is named for the Turkic peoples, however the people inhabiting Turkey are just one branch of this vast family of ethnicities. Turkey's location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia makes it a country of significant geostrategic importance.

The Ottoman Empire (1299-1922), which had Turkey has its center, was a substantial force in Eastern Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. It reached its height after it took Constantinople, the last Byzantine outpost, in 1453; the next two centuries were the empire's golden age.

The present republic was formed in 1922-3, after the Ottoman Empire was defeated during World War I. Turkey was neutral throughout most of World War II, but joined the Allied Forces on 23 February 1945. Turkey contributed to NATO forces during the Korean War.

Literary comment[]

Most of Harry Turtledove's stories involving Turkey are set in the "Ottoman" era, although even at the time, the names "Turkey" and "Ottoman Empire" were used interchangeably. In some timelines, the Ottoman Empire continues on for longer than it did in OTL. Both versions redirect here for convenience.

Turkey in Agent of Byzantium[]

By the early 14th century, the Roman Empire had retained Asia Minor as part of its territory.

Turkey in Atlantis[]

The government of the Ottoman Empire perpetrated infamous massacres of Armenians in the 19th century. Consul Leland Newton of Atlantis was distressed when his colleague Jeremiah Stafford seemed to draw inspiration from this precedent, when Stafford suggested that they suppress the Atlantean Servile Insurrection as bloodily as possible.[1]

Literary comment[]

The suggestion that an Armenian Genocide took place several decades earlier than in OTL is only mentioned in one line in the novel, and is an unexplained butterfly effect of this timeline.

Turkey in "The Bleeding Moon"[]

In 1546, a century and a half after the Ottoman Empire conquered Bulgaria in 1396, the Bulgar village of Gramada was plagued by a vurkolak.

Turkey in Crosstime Traffic[]

In the home timeline, Turkey was suspected of having destroyed the Syrian capital Damascus in 2033 with a nuclear weapon smuggled into the city.

Crosstime Traffic imported high quality fruit from an alternate in which Palestine was a sleepy Turkish province.

Turkey in Curious Notions[]

In the alternate designated as 3477 by Crosstime Traffic, the Ottoman Empire was a traditional ally of Germany and so continued to exist well into the 21st Century. Paul Gomes read newspaper accounts of the Sultan's activities shortly after his arrival in the alternate.[2]

Turkey in The Gladiator[]

In the early 1960s, the United States maintained nuclear missiles in Turkey. During the face-off of 1962, the United States refused to relinquish these missiles, and had to accept the presence of Soviet missiles in Cuba, losing much face in the process.[3]

Turkey in "The Emperor's Return"[]

On 29 May 1453, the Ottoman Empire successfully conquered Constantinople, bringing about the fall of the Byzantine Empire. The last emperor, Constantine XI Palaiologos, vanished on that day.

On 7 June 2003, Turkey was invaded by the Soviet Union and its ally, Greece. Greece was rewarded for the alliance with the return of Constantinople, now Istanbul, to Greek control three days later.

Turkey in "The Horse of Bronze"[]

The sphinxes defeated the centaurs in Asia Minor during a tin shortage in the centaurs' land. The centaurs then mounted an expedition to Tin Isle to see if their tin supply could be restored.

Turkey in "The Maltese Elephant"[]

In 1565, the Ottoman Turks attempted to conquer Malta. The trumpeting of a Maltese Elephant warned the defenders of an attack, and the Turks' invasion was repelled. This incident caused the animal to have a sacred status in the island's culture.[4]

Turkey in "The More it Changes"[]

The history of the Ottoman Empire was changed thanks to the efforts of Sabbatai Tzevi, a Turkish-born Jew who proclaimed himself the Messiah and led a substantial group of followers as he proselytized throughout the Empire. In September, 1666, Sultan Mehmed IV brought Sabbatai before him, expecting Sabbatai to convert to Islam. Instead, after listening to Sabbatai, Mehmed announced that he was converting, and changed his name to Sabbatai I.

From then on, the Sabbateans flourished within the Ottoman Empire, eventually spreading into Europe.

Turkey in "Les Mortes d'Arthur"[]

Turkey was defeated and assimilated by the Arab World. As a result, Turks were one of several nationalist groups threatening the Arab World during the Sixty-sixth Winter Games.

Turkey in "Ready for the Fatherland"[]

By 1979, during the three-way cold war, Turkey was in the Soviet sphere of influence.

Turkey in "Report of the Special Committee on the Quality of Life"[]

Jaime Nosénada's committee report named the Ottoman Sultanate as one of the prime menaces to Spain's security in 1491. In particular, Nosénada expressed apprehension that the Ottomans would make puppet states of Morocco and Algeria, to strike at Spain's possessions in Italy.[5]

Turkey in Ruled Britannia[]

The Ottoman Empire was decisively defeated by Spanish forces at the Battle of Lepanto in 1571, 17 years before King Philip II conquered England with the Spanish Armada. English playwright William Shakespeare paid tribute to this battle in his history play King Philip.

Turkey in Southern Victory[]

The Ottoman Empire aligned itself with the Central Powers and benefited from its allies' victory in the Great War. In 1917, Turkey was among the first governments to grant diplomatic recognition to the Republic of Quebec, the Republic of Ireland, and the Kingdom of Poland. The Ottomans were able to retain their Arab territories after the armistice of 1917.

The Empire began a program of genocide against Armenians within its territory during the war, and continued on after. This made the Empire the target of outrage from its wartime co-belligerent, the United States. Officially, the US asked their de jure ally Kaiser Wilhelm II, who was much closer to Turkey geographically, to pressure the Sultan. However, German protests were half-hearted, and the US, weary from their costly wartime experience, backed down, allowing the genocide to continue.

Nonetheless, during the Second Great War enough Armenians remained to mount a people bombing campaign against the Turks.

During the Second Great War, Turkey joined the Central Powers once again, and emerged victorious.

Turkey in The Two Georges[]

In 1995, the Ottoman Empire was a protectorate of the British Empire,[6] one of several such protectorates the British held sway over. The Ottoman Empire's protectorate status meant that foreign powers interfered with their affairs at their own peril, as their safety was guaranteed by the full might of the British Empire. Their alignment with Britain ensured the British had a dominant presence in the Middle East.

The Ottomans' domain included Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia and Albania, as well as other territories in the Middle East, including the sleepy province of Palestine and the Arabian Peninsula. In Africa, the Empire controlled Egypt, eastern Sudan, and about half of the Mediterranean's southern shore.[7]

Turkey in Worldwar[]

Turkey remained neutral during World War II. During the Race invasion of Tosev 3, Turkey fell to the Race after the British were defeated in the Middle East, and at the Peace of Cairo in 1944 it was formally recognized as a Race colony.[8]

In the years afterwards, tobacco imports from Turkey became too expensive for many US cigarette companies and they stopped including it in their products.[9] Turkish opium poppy proved to be a profitable source of income for European smugglers such as Pierre Dutourd. Germany and the Soviet Union, both sharing land borders with Turkey, kept stirring up unrest within the country.

When the Race-German War of 1965 began over Poland, the city of Istanbul was used as a major supply base for the Race's effort in defending their colony. Despite being protected by the Race's anti-missile defenses, a German nuclear missile managed to get through and destroy the city.

See also[]

  • Seljuk Empire, a nation dominated by Turkic peoples, which controlled much of Anatolia in the 11th century before going defunct in the 12th century. In Through Darkest Europe, a longer-lived Seljuk Empire has become a rough geographic analog of the Ottoman Empire.


  1. Liberating Atlantis, p. 213.
  2. Curious Notions, pg. 43, MMP.
  3. The Gladiator, p. 19.
  4. E.g., Counting Up, Counting Down, p. 167-168.
  5. Departures, p. 142.
  6. The Two Georges, pg. 142, MPB.
  7. Ibid., Frontispiece map.
  8. See the Colonization map.
  9. Second Contact, p. 65, PB.