Mathematics, medicine and astronomy were the core disciplines of Islamic science in the Ottoman Empire. There have been quite a number of works written on these subjects in Turkish, Arabic and Persian. The collection in the Library of the Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute specializes in astronomical, astrological, mathematical and miscellaneous works. This is perhaps the only collection in the world that houses manuscripts on related subject matters. Therefore, it is significant for those scholars and experts who are interested in these subjects and Ottoman and Islamic cultural structure. 

The collection in the library comprises a total of 1339 works in 581 volumes. 822 of the works are in Turkish, 414 are in Arabic and 103 are in Persian. Since this collection consists of a number of unique and rare manuscripts it occupies an important place among other manuscript collections in the world. In addition, works on astronomy and astrology in this collection are not only crucial to the Ottoman Empire and the Islamic world, but also to Western scholars in this field. Read more about this element on the UNESCO Memory of the World website.

Silk Road On the Map

Country profile

Capital: Ankara
Region: Asia and the Pacific, Europe and North America

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  • Route: Land