Fatma Sultan (daughter of Ahmed I)

For other uses, see Fatma Sultan.
Fātmā Sultān
Born c. 1606
Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Died c. 1670
Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Spouse Damat Kara Mustafa Pasha
(13 July 1626 - 25 December 1628)
Çatalcalı Hasan Pasha
(1629 - 1631)
Damat Kanbur Mustafa Pasha
(1632 - 2 July 1636)
Damat Hoca Yusuf Pasha
(? - 1637)
Damat Maksud Pasha
(? - September 1644)
Damat Melek Ahmed Pasha
(6 April 1662 - 1 September 1662)
Damat Agha Mustafa Pasha
(April 1663 - 1665/1666)
Full name
Fatma Sultan
House House of Osman
Father Ahmed I
Mother Kösem Sultan
Religion Islam

Fatma Sultan (1605/1606 – 1670) was an Ottoman princess. She was the daughter of sultan Ahmed I (r. 1603–1617) and Kösem Sultan, sister of Murad IV (r. 1623–1640) and Ibrahim (r. 1640–1648), and the paternal aunt of Mehmed IV (r. 1648–1687). She is known for her many political marriages.


The year of her birth has been suggested as 1605 or 1606. The Ottoman princesses were normally married away, to influential Ottoman officials, by their mothers or paternal grandmothers, who had the right to arrange their marriages and arranged matches which could be of political use. They had privileges in marriage which separated them from other Muslim females: such as the right to be the only wife of their spouse, to refuse to consummate their marriage until they were ready and to contract a divorce when they pleased. Due to many of them marrying as children and being widowed and divorced several times, often for political reasons, remarriages were very common. Fatma Sultan and her sister, Ayşe Sultan, are extreme examples of this: they were married at least seven and six times, and entered into their last engagement at the ages of 61 and 50, respectively.

Fatma Sultan was reportedly married in 1624 to Çatalcalı Hasan Pasha (d. 1631). She was divorced from her first spouse in 1626. She married secondly in 1628 to Kara Mustafa Pasha (d. 1628). However, she was widowed the year of her second marriage when Kara Mustafa Pasha was executed by her 16-year-old brother, the reigning Sultan Murad IV, for some action "contrary to the law of God."[1]

One of the most noted of the seven marriages of Fatma was her marriage to Melek Ahmed Pasha, previously married to her niece, Kaya Sultan, in 1662. By that time, she was in her late fifties. The marriage was forcibly arranged against the wishes of both parties, and unhappy, and Melek Ahmed Pasha accused the Grand Vizier Köprülü Mehmed Pasha of having arranged it to punish him. The Grand Vizier himself joked that he had given Melek Ahmed Pasha an elephant to feed. On the wedding night, Fatma presented Melek Ahmed Pasha her demand of what allowance she wished for herself and her court. He replied that the amount was impossible, upon which she replied that divorce was the only alternative, and demanded he return her dowry to her, which amounted to one year of taxes of Egypt (this was possibly related to the fact that one of her previous husbands, the late Kara Mustafa Pasha, had formerly been a governor of the Egypt province of the Ottoman Empire and was reported to have been forced to pay back the tax proceeds that he had embezzled during his term[2]). When she was widowed in 1662 shortly thereafter, she sealed his residence and claimed the right to his property, which caused a conflict with the Grand Vizier, who was forced to give in to her demands.[3]

In 1665, she married Kanbur Mustafa Pasha. Fatma Sultan was still alive in 1667, because it is known that she was married with Közbekçi Yusuf Pasha in that year.

In popular culture

In the 2016 TV series Muhteşem Yüzyıl: Kösem, Fatma is portrayed by Turkish actress Balim Gaye Bayrak.

External links


  1. Accounts and Extracts of the Manuscripts in the Library of the King of France. 2. R. Faulder. 1789. p. 51. The sultan Morad put him to death in the year 1037 [AH], for some action which was contrary to the law of God.
  2. Accounts and Extracts of the Manuscripts in the Library of the King of France. 2. R. Faulder. 1789. p. 46.
  3. Evliya Çelebi (1 January 1991). The Intimate Life of an Ottoman Statesman, Melek Ahmed Pasha (1588-1662): As Portrayed in Evliya Celebi's Book of Travels (Seyahat-name). SUNY Press. p. 265. ISBN 978-0-7914-0640-3.
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