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Word Count: 278
The Ottoman Empire The Ottoman Empire was founded in the late thirteenth century and last until the early twentieth century This empire was one of historys greatest military empires564 McKay Hill Buckler that was centered around the present day country of Turkey The Ottoman Empire once at its peak had controlled a vast area extending from the Balkan Peninsula to the Middle East and North Africa in the middle of the sixteenth century This was accomplished under the rule of Suleiman the Magnificent This empire was a Muslim based society The Ottomans also known as the Apostles of Islam had not forced the conquered Christians to convert to Islam Instead they had to pay a special poll tax called the cizye These non-muslims that paid the tax were granted a covenant of protection called the dhimma The sultan the leader of the Ottoman Empire exploited the land and the people of his empire as he saw fit Everyone was a slave to the sultan There was no personal landholding everything belonged to the sultan The sultan also levied an annual tax of one to three thousand male children on the Christians These children were taken to Turkey and brought up as Muslims and trained to fight and administer Some of these children rose up to the ranks of the Sultans bureaucracy The others formed an elite group of the Sultans army called the Janissary Corps The Janissaries were governed by different laws and had the privilege of protecting the sultan There devotion to such discipline had made them a powerful army allowing them to conquer and rule the most powerful empire in the world during the sixteenth century
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