Portrait of Ahmed III (1673-1736), Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (1703-1730)
Ahmed III (Turkish: III. Ahmed; 30/31 December 1673 – 1 July 1736) was Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and a son of Sultan Mehmed IV. His mother was Emetullah Rabia Gülnuş Sultan, originally named Evmania Voria, who was an ethnic Greek. He was born at Hacıoğlu Pazarcık, in Dobruja. He succeeded to the throne in 1703 on the abdication of his brother Mustafa II (1695–1703). Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pasha and the Sultan's daughter, Fatma Sultan (wife of the former) directed the government from 1718 to 1730, a period referred to as the Tulip Era. Ahmed III cultivated good relations with France, doubtless in view of Russia's menacing attitude. He afforded refuge in Ottoman territory to Charles XII of Sweden, after the Swedish defeat at the hands of Peter I of Russia in the Battle of Poltava of 1709. In 1710 Charles XII convinced Sultan Ahmed III to declare war against Russia, and the Ottoman forces under Baltacı Mehmet Pasha won a major victory at the Battle of Prut. In the aftermath, Russia returned Azov back to the Ottomans, agreed to demolish the fortress of Taganrog and others in the area, and to stop interfering in the affairs of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. Sultan Ahmed III had become unpopular by reason of the excessive pomp and costly luxury in which he and his principal officers indulged; on September 20, 1730, a mutinous riot of seventeen Janissaries, led by the Albanian Patrona Halil, was aided by the citizens as well as the military until it swelled into an insurrection in front of which the Sultan was forced to give up the throne. Ahmed voluntarily led his nephew Mahmud I to the seat of sovereignty and paid allegiance to him as Sultan of the Empire. He then retired to the Kafes previously occupied by Mahmud and died at Topkapı Palace after six years of confinement.
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