The Image of an Ottoman City

Imperial Architecture and Urban Experience in Aleppo in the 16th and 17th Centuries


This urban and architectural study of Aleppo, a center of early modern global trade, draws upon archival and narrative texts, architectural evidence, and contemporary theoretical discussions of the relation between imperial ideology, urban patterns and rituals, and architectural form. The first two centuries of Ottoman rule fostered tremendous urban development and reorientation through judiciously sited acts of patronage. Monumental structures endowed by Ottoman officials both introduced a new imperial architecture from Istanbul and incorporated formal elements from the local urban visual language. By viewing the urban and social contexts of these acts, tracing their evolution over two centuries, and examining their discussion in Ottoman and Arabic sources, this book proposes a new model for understanding the local reception and adaptation of imperial forms, institutions and norms.


EUR €160.00USD $193.00

Biographical Note

Heghnar Zeitlian Watenpaugh, Ph.D. (1999) in Art History, University of California Los Angeles, is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of California, Davis. She has published on the urban and architectural history of Islamic societies.

Review Quote

Winner of the 2006 Spiro Kostof Award "The book is excellently produced, as one would expect from Brill." – Peter Clark, in: Asian Affairs, 2005 "... an imaginatively conceptualized, rigorously researched, and carefully written study..." " sophisticated and intellectually mature, a model of scholarship in the Kostof tradition..."


All those interested in the history and theory of empires, Islamic art, architecture and urbanism, Ottoman and Mamluk history, and early modern Islamic society.