Venice & the Ottoman Empire: Crash Course

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John Horgan
by CrashCourse
published on 25 May 2021

In which John Green discusses the strange and mutually beneficial relationship between a republic, the citystate of Venice, and an Empire, the Ottomans—and how studying history can help you to be a better boyfriend and/or girlfriend. Together, the Ottoman Empire and Venice grew wealthy by facilitating trade: The Venetians had ships and nautical expertise; the Ottomans had access to many of the most valuable goods in the world, especially pepper and grain. Working together across cultural and religious divides, they both become very rich, and the Ottomans became one of the most powerful political entities in the world. We also discuss how economic realities can overcome religious and political differences (in this case between Muslims and Christians), the doges of Venice, the sultans of the Ottoman empire, the janissaries and so-called slave aristocracy of the Ottoman Empire, and how money and knowledge from the Islamic world helped fuel and fund the European Renaissance. Also, there's a They Might Be Giants joke.

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Cite This Work

APA Style

CrashCourse, . (2021, May 25). Venice & the Ottoman Empire: Crash Course. World History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

CrashCourse, . "Venice & the Ottoman Empire: Crash Course." World History Encyclopedia. Last modified May 25, 2021.

MLA Style

CrashCourse, . "Venice & the Ottoman Empire: Crash Course." World History Encyclopedia. World History Encyclopedia, 25 May 2021. Web. 06 Feb 2023.