I. Lectures on the History of the Turks,
in their relation to Europe
John Henry Newman

Prefatory notice

Volume Contents | Works | Home


Lecture  Page
I. The Mother Country of the Turks
1. The Tribes of the North      1.
2. The Tartars    19.

II. The Descent of the Turks

3. The Tartar and the Turk    48.
4. The Turk and the Saracen    74.

III. The Conquests of the Turks

5. The Turk and the Christian  104.
6. The Pope and the Turk  131.

IV. The Prospects of the Turks

7. Barbarism and Civilization  159.
8. The Past and the Present of the Ottomans    183.
9. The Future of the Ottomans  207.
Notes  230.
Chronological Tables  235.

Top | Volume Contents | Works | Home

Prefatory Notice

{xi} THE following sketch of Turkish history was the substance of Lectures delivered in the Catholic Institute of Liverpool during October, 1853. It may be necessary for its author to state at once, in order to prevent disappointment, that he only professes in the course of it to have brought together in one materials which are to be found in any ordinarily furnished library. Not intending it in the first instance for publication, but to answer a temporary purpose, he has, in drawing it up, sometimes borrowed words and phrases, to save himself trouble, from the authorities whom he has consulted; and this must be taken as his excuse, if any want of keeping is discernible in the composition. He has attempted nothing more than to group old facts in his own way; and he trusts that his defective acquaintance with historical works and travels, and the unreality of book-knowledge altogether in questions of fact, have not exposed him to superficial generalizations.

One other remark may be necessary. Such a work at the present moment, when we are on the point of undertaking a great war in behalf of the Turks, may seem {xii} without meaning, unless it conducts the reader to some definite conclusions, as to what is to be wished, what to be done, in the present state of the East; but a minister of religion may fairly protest against being made a politician. Political questions are mainly decided by political expediency, and only indirectly and under circumstances fall into the province of theology. Much less can such a question be asked of the priests of that Church, whose voice in this matter has been for five centuries unheeded by the Powers of Europe. As they have sown, so must they reap: had the advice of the Holy See been followed, there would have been no Turks in Europe for the Russians to turn out of it. All that need be said here in behalf of the Sultan is, that the Christian Powers are bound to keep such lawful promises as they have made to him. All that need be said in favour of the Czar is, that he is attacking an infamous Power, the enemy of God and man. And all that need be said by way of warning to the Catholic is, that he should beware of strengthening the Czar's cause by denying or ignoring its strong point. It is difficult to understand how a reader of history can side with the Spanish people in past centuries in their struggle with the Moors, without wishing Godspeed, in mere consistency, to any Christian Power, which aims at delivering the East of Europe from the Turkish yoke.

Top | Volume Contents | Works | Home

Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
Copyright 2007 by The National Institute for Newman Studies. All rights reserved.