The History Of The Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman Empire was founded circa 1299 by Osman I as a small beylik in northwestern Asia Minor just south of the Byzantine capital Constantinople. The Ottomans first crossed into Europe in 1352, establishing a permanent settlement at Çimpe Castle on the Dardanelles in 1354 and moving their capital to Edirne (Adrianople) in 1369. At the same time, the numerous small Turkic states in Asia Minor were assimilated into the budding Ottoman sultanate through conquest or declarations of allegiance.
As Sultan Mehmed II conquered Constantinople (today named Istanbul) in 1453, the state grew into a mighty empire, expanding deep into Europe, northern Africa and the Middle East. With most of the Balkans under Ottoman rule by the mid-16th century, Ottoman territory increased exponentially under Sultan Selim I, who assumed the Caliphate in 1517 as the Ottomans turned east and conquered western Arabia, Egypt, Mesopotamia and the Levant, among other territories. Within the next few decades, much of the North African coast (except Morocco) became part of the Ottoman realm.