Şehzade Mehmed

This is an Ottoman Turkish style name. Mehmed is the given name, the title is Şehzade, and there is no family name.
Şehzade Mehmed
Born c.1521
Ottoman Empire
Died 6 November 1543 (aged 22)
Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Spouse Esmehan Baharnaz Sultan (possibly)
Issue Hümaşah Sultan
House House of Osman
Father Suleiman the Magnificent
Mother Hürrem Sultan
Religion Islam

Şehzade Mehmed (1521–1543) was an Ottoman prince (şehzade), son of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and Hürrem Sultan.[1] He was assigned to rule in Manisa after his brother Şehzade Mustafa was sent to Amasya from there.


Mehmed's birth changed the status of the harem, marked the beginning of Hürrem's rising in the palace. Historians say that Mehmed was very much like his older half-brother, Mustafa and that he looked up to him as his role model, and had a good relationship with him since their childhood. Evliya Çelebi describes Mehmed as a "prince of more exquisite qualities than even Mustafa. He had a piercing intellect and a subtle judgment"[2] and that Suleiman had intended that he would be his successor had he not died. Mehmed participated in the successful Siege of Esztergom along his father. When Suleiman assigned Mustafa to rule Amasya, his place as ruler of Manisa had been taken by Mehmed.

Mehmed's only child was Hümaşah Sultan. According to some sources the mother of his daughter was the alleged wife of Mehmed, his cousin, Esmehan Baharnaz Sultan.


There are different opinions about Mehmed's death. According to some historians, he died from smallpox. According to another opinion, he died a natural death. There are also speculations that, as being constantly favored by the sultan over his brother Mustafa, Mahidevran Gülbahar planned his death. It is worth noting that Mehmed died the same year he went to battle along his father at the (Siege of Esztergom), alas 3 months later.

After his son's death, Suleiman the Magnificent had the famed imperial architect Mimar Sinan build the Şehzade Mosque in Istanbul to commemorate Mehmed. Also, Sultan Süleyman composed an elegy for his beloved son Mehmed who died in 1543 and ended the poem with the line "Most distinguished of the princes, my Sultan Mehmed" in which the total numerical value is the year of his son’s death.[3][4] The fact that Mehmed's death offered Suleyman his first major opportunity to serve as an architectural patron may also have given later Ottomans reason to believe that Mehmed was the favored one. The fact that Suleyman had not only commissioned a mosque for Mehmed, but have it built in Istanbul as if he were a sultan (given that şehzade were buried in Bursa according to the custom) reflected how much the sultan loved his son.

See also

Further reading


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