Afro-Asian focused Ottomans?

Ottomans have spent a lot of money, energy and blood trying to push into Europe against major powers of the world such as Austria, Russia and more. Conflicts with Venice and holy League, Spain and more erupted and provided further drain on the state.

What would happen if Ottomans focused on Asia and Africa instead? Of course they expand into Europe but with Danube as Northern frontier and Serbia as the westernmost possession. Instead they push harder into Persia with long term goal of reaching India. Can they actually make it? Can they keep it together? Do they get attacked by Western powers regardless? How successful can this strategy get? What are the downsides?
 
Ottomans have spent a lot of money, energy and blood trying to push into Europe against major powers of the world such as Austria, Russia and more. Conflicts with Venice and holy League, Spain and more erupted and provided further drain on the state.

What would happen if Ottomans focused on Asia and Africa instead? Of course they expand into Europe but with Danube as Northern frontier and Serbia as the westernmost possession. Instead they push harder into Persia with long term goal of reaching India. Can they actually make it? Can they keep it together? Do they get attacked by Western powers regardless? How successful can this strategy get? What are the downsides?
What if they not only are a regional power in Eastern and Northern Africa but also in Western Africa ? What if they border the Empires of the Malinke and Fula ? What if their Empire expands in the East to Angola and also into Sub Saharan Africa ? What if they explore the Congo Basin in the 16th/17th Century ? Maybe they also found client kingdoms supporting them with troops. Or they are founding outright Vilyats (provinces). What if the are in conflict with Traditional Religion African Kingdoms ? How would they relate to Abyssinia ?
 
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Ottomans have spent a lot of money, energy and blood trying to push into Europe against major powers of the world such as Austria, Russia and more. Conflicts with Venice and holy League, Spain and more erupted and provided further drain on the state.

What would happen if Ottomans focused on Asia and Africa instead? Of course they expand into Europe but with Danube as Northern frontier and Serbia as the westernmost possession. Instead they push harder into Persia with long term goal of reaching India. Can they actually make it? Can they keep it together? Do they get attacked by Western powers regardless? How successful can this strategy get? What are the downsides?
Rumelia alongside Anatolia were the ottoman heartland,they have to push into Europe regardless plus Europe was far richer much those regions at the time. Plus with Egypt they can reach India the naval way
 
No. No. Yes. Baghdad and Tabriz is likely furthest ottoman can go. Wasting power so far from their heartland, loss of prestige for fighting muslim instead of expand into non-muslim, difficulty in maintain imperial administration so far away.
 

iddt3

Donor
Iirc, the big issue was that Muslims don't pay taxes, and Christians do. Additionally, Christian youth were the source for their most elite infantry. Combine that with the opportunities for looting infidels, and expansion into Europe was much more profitable than elsewhere.
 
To put it simply, the Ottomans wouldn't be the dynasty that we knew them as. The whole trajectory of the Empire, from the moment that Osman's father Ertuğrul settled the Kayi tribe in the remnants of western Asia Minor, was going to be focused towards conquering the Romans and whatever lied in the west.
 
Hmm, the ideal time to do it would be after Selim the First, this is after the Ottoman's had secured Egypt and thus no one could go East or West without paying tribute.

Motive wise, I think Portugal would give plenty of reason as their penchant for sailing around the African continent to circumnavigate Ottoman waters ticked them off. They couldn't make a Suez Canal which meant they needed to utilize over land transportation more than they'd like, but making ships more local to the Red Sea might cover that?

With these factors in mind, I imagine the focus would be on trying to secure the East African Coast, India and then discovering the Portuguese in Oceania and trying to drive them out.

They'd even have good motive if they moved fast enough, the Portuguese overthrew the Kilwa Sultanate in 1505 and they were the dominant force over Mombasa and Malindi so taking much of not all the East Coast seems probable. Plus Islam was making inroads into Oceania through Indian Muslims and Hui people from China, and all of this can even give them access to 'Australia' the North of which had engaged in long term trade with several islander nations and was also being influenced by Islam.
 
No. No. Yes. Baghdad and Tabriz is likely furthest ottoman can go. Wasting power so far from their heartland, loss of prestige for fighting muslim instead of expand into non-muslim, difficulty in maintain imperial administration so far away.
They conquered Iraq, Basra, Arabian Sea coast etc otl without focus on it. Surely with a dedicated expansion in that direction they could go further? They fought Muslims everywhere during their conquest of Levant, Egypt, the Celali uprisings and Safavid Persia. Fighting heretics was considered even more important than fighting infidels.
Iirc, the big issue was that Muslims don't pay taxes, and Christians do. Additionally, Christian youth were the source for their most elite infantry. Combine that with the opportunities for looting infidels, and expansion into Europe was much more profitable than elsewhere.
I’m sorry but that’s not true. Muslims pay taxes. Difference is Jizya vs Zakat tax. Christians paid submission tax directly to the state while Muslims paid Zakat to the impoverished. They both paid regular poll taxes. Muslims fought and formed majority of troops. Christians we’re needed for Jannisaries.
Hmm, the ideal time to do it would be after Selim the First, this is after the Ottoman's had secured Egypt and thus no one could go East or West without paying tribute.

Motive wise, I think Portugal would give plenty of reason as their penchant for sailing around the African continent to circumnavigate Ottoman waters ticked them off. They couldn't make a Suez Canal which meant they needed to utilize over land transportation more than they'd like, but making ships more local to the Red Sea might cover that?

With these factors in mind, I imagine the focus would be on trying to secure the East African Coast, India and then discovering the Portuguese in Oceania and trying to drive them out.

They'd even have good motive if they moved fast enough, the Portuguese overthrew the Kilwa Sultanate in 1505 and they were the dominant force over Mombasa and Malindi so taking much of not all the East Coast seems probable. Plus Islam was making inroads into Oceania through Indian Muslims and Hui people from China, and all of this can even give them access to 'Australia' the North of which had engaged in long term trade with several islander nations and was also being influenced by Islam.
Would they move capital elsewhere if this was a success? With majority of possssions in Africa, Middle East, Persia and possibly India would Constantinople stay as relevant and well situated? Also couldn’t find much info on it but what were ottoman views on Indian, Persian and African women as mothers of sultans? Was there racism involved in it or would they not care if a Sudanese or Indian woman was a mother of a sultan? What happens to Shias in Iran and India?
 
In my Europa Universalis IV games I always see Ottoman colonies in the East Indies. Were the Muslim traders who converted Indonesia to Islam from Turkey? Would be interesting if the Ottoman sultans decided as the caliph, they would assert authority over there.
 
Iirc, the big issue was that Muslims don't pay taxes, and Christians do. Additionally, Christian youth were the source for their most elite infantry.
Muslims paid tithes and alms to Muslim communal institutions, and had military service obligations. The only limitation was you couldn't enslave them or loot them of possessions or land unless you had the excuse of them being rebellious or heretical.
 
Ottomans have spent a lot of money, energy and blood trying to push into Europe against major powers of the world such as Austria, Russia and more. Conflicts with Venice and holy League, Spain and more erupted and provided further drain on the state.

What would happen if Ottomans focused on Asia and Africa instead? Of course they expand into Europe but with Danube as Northern frontier and Serbia as the westernmost possession. Instead they push harder into Persia with long term goal of reaching India. Can they actually make it? Can they keep it together? Do they get attacked by Western powers regardless? How successful can this strategy get? What are the downsides?
The Ottoman society was, in a lot of ways, still based on the specific opportunity for military holy battle that built the original beylik into a regional power— the Ottoman leadership’s legitimacy was based, in part, on warring with neighboring Christians like their ancestors, even if the justification became less and less religious. Balkan land was just a bonus! (If a bonus that increasingly became the top priority, of course).
 
Would they move capital elsewhere if this was a success? With majority of possssions in Africa, Middle East, Persia and possibly India would Constantinople stay as relevant and well situated? Also couldn’t find much info on it but what were ottoman views on Indian, Persian and African women as mothers of sultans? Was there racism involved in it or would they not care if a Sudanese or Indian woman was a mother of a sultan? What happens to Shias in Iran and India?
I don't think so, even ignoring the massive cultural and religious importance of Constantinople, its a venue for amazingly profitable Black Sea Trade and heavily fortified and wealthy. As it is I expect their system for expanding East will be absorbing or propping up Sultanates along the East African Coast and Oceania over full on domination, while using these locales as their venue for duking it out with Christians and a source of major trade wealth. As to the mothers of Sultans, given European Christians could be the mothers of Sultans I don't think it'd be a major issue.
 
I don't think so, even ignoring the massive cultural and religious importance of Constantinople, its a venue for amazingly profitable Black Sea Trade and heavily fortified and wealthy. As it is I expect their system for expanding East will be absorbing or propping up Sultanates along the East African Coast and Oceania over full on domination, while using these locales as their venue for duking it out with Christians and a source of major trade wealth. As to the mothers of Sultans, given European Christians could be the mothers of Sultans I don't think it'd be a major issue.
So you don’t think the increased Indian trade and territories which would probably flow trough Basra or Alexandria would incentivize moving the capital or displace Constantinople as trade center?

That is actually the main reason why I’m asking - Ottomans seem to have exclusively produced offspring with European women - out of 66 mothers of sultan only 5 are Turkish and all of those are from the early foundation period. 2 are Jewish. The rest is Europe. Which made me wonder about their preferences considering they ruled over numerous berbers, Arabs, and other people groups but never married them. Did ottoman turks have a racial preference or was this a coincidence? Would they actually ever consider marrying or producing offspring with an Indian woman or an African?
 
So you don’t think the increased Indian trade and territories which would probably flow trough Basra or Alexandria would incentivize moving the capital or displace Constantinople as trade center?

That is actually the main reason why I’m asking - Ottomans seem to have exclusively produced offspring with European women - out of 66 mothers of sultan only 5 are Turkish and all of those are from the early foundation period. 2 are Jewish. The rest is Europe. Which made me wonder about their preferences considering they ruled over numerous berbers, Arabs, and other people groups but never married them. Did ottoman turks have a racial preference or was this a coincidence? Would they actually ever consider marrying or producing offspring with an Indian woman or an African?
Not really, India would be a nightmarish place to try and conquer and rule and would lack the stable reliability of Black Sea Trade, along with the all important cultural factors; could it happen eventually? I mean maybe, but it would be like, three or four centuries out from when they first got invested in the East over the West and rely on basically total hegemonic dominance in the region.

I can't say for certain, but I think much of it was likely rooted in the relative political importance of those women compared to the others an general machinations and courtly politics.
 
I think if they focused less on European expansion and settled instead on maintaining a defensive boundary in the Balkans, the Ottomans could have expanded to conquer North Africa, East Africa, the Caucasus, Crimea, Iran, Afghanistan and western parts of Central Asia, but that would be the limit. The Ottomans would essentially cover the former expanse of the Achaemenid Empire, but with slightly more territory in Africa and the Caucasus.

As for intermarriage, yes the Ottomans historically favoured European (largely Slavic) Christian women as their principal wives/concubines and the mothers of Sultans, but if they hold greater North African and Persian territory, and less European lands, you will likely see more intermarriage with Arabo-Berber and Persian women. Note that Circassian Caucasian women were also highly prized by the Ottomans already IOTL. The Ottomans won't be expanding deep into India or Sub-Saharan Africa so Indian or black African women are very unlikely to become principal wives/concubines and mothers of Sultans, though they will likely have a greater presence in the Ottoman Imperial Harem due to the Ottomans expanding to border their home regions.
 
Why not expand through the Caucasus to Russia, when it was still a minor power and from there connect to the other turks in central Asia?
 
As far as India goes couldn’t they set up client sultanates and just hold trading ports much like the minor powers there- the Portuguese all the way down to the Swedes did.
 
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