Portrait of Mahmud II (1785-1839), Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (1808-1839)
Mahmud II (Turkish: II. Mahmud; 20 July 1785 – 1 July 1839) was the 30th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1808 until his death in 1839. His reign is recognized for the extensive administrative, military, and fiscal reforms he instituted, which culminated into the Decree of Tanzimat ("reorganization") that was carried out by his sons Abdulmejid I and Abdülaziz. Mahmud's reforms included the 1826 abolition of the conservative Janissary corps, which removed a major obstacle to his and his successors' reforms in the Empire. The reforms he instituted were characterized by political and social changes. His mother was Nakşidil Valide Sultan. His father was Sultan Abdul Hamid I. In 1808, Mahmud II's predecessor, and half-brother, Mustafa IV ordered his execution along with his cousin, the deposed Sultan Selim III, in order to defuse the rebellion. Selim III was killed, but Mahmud was safely kept hidden by his mother and was placed on the throne after the rebels deposed Mustafa IV. The leader of this rebellion, Alemdar Mustafa Pasha, later became Mahmud II's vizier. The vizier took the initiative in resuming reforms that had been terminated by the conservative coup of 1807 that had brought Mustafa IV to power. However he was killed during a rebellion in 1808 and Mahmud II temporarily abandoned the reforms. Mahmud II's later reformation efforts were more successful.
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