Tuncay Zorlu / Technological Developments in the Ottoman Navy under the Reign of Selim III

Technological Developments in the Ottoman Navy under the Reign of Selim III

The reign of Selim III witnessed technological novelties in the Ottoman navy. Thanks to the access to ample sources for naval construction and wisely navigated channels of information, the systematic construction of new types of sailing warships was adopted in this period.

One of the striking breakthroughs of the period was the adoption of copper sheathing for the hulls and bottoms of Ottoman naval ships, from 1207/1792-93 onwards. The construction of the first dry-dock in the Golden Horn was another important development in the period. Furthermore, at the beginning of the nineteenth century the first negotiations with Great Britain regarding the purchase of a steam engine, which the Ottoman authorities intended to use in emptying the dry-dock were initiated.

Among other significant technological developments were the construction of an anchor house (lengerhâne); the building of a measuring house (endâzehâne), the adoption of new mast machines, fire conduits, a new ship launching method; the beginning of the keeping of navigational log books; and the introduction of a new kitchen and provisioning system.
While, foreign missions, especially French, Swedish and British ones, played important roles in training Ottoman shipbuilders and contributed to the modernisation of the Ottoman naval technology with services they rendered in the shipbuilding sector and naval warfare, they constituted the first instances of technological dependence of the Ottoman State on Europe in the long run.

III. Selim Döneminde Osmanlı Donanmasındaki Teknolojik Gelişmeler

III. Selim dönemi Osmanli donanmasi açisindan birçok yenilige sahit oldu. Gemi insasi için gerekli zengin hammadde kaynaklari ve haber alma kanallari sayesinde, yeni tarz yelkenli gemiler benimsenmeye baslandi.

Dönemin en önemli teknolojik atilimlarinin basinda, 1207/1792-93 yilindan baslamak üzere, su zararlilarina karsi korumak ve daha süratle yol almalarini saglamak amaciyla, gemilerin karinalarinin bakirla kaplanmasi islemi gelmektedir. Haliç’te Isveçli mühendislerce insa edilen ilk kuru havuz da önemli bir teknolojik katkidir. Ayrica ondokuzuncu yüzyilin hemen baslarinda, savas gemilerinin yanastiklari bu kuru havuzun sularini tahliye için bir buhar makinesinin satin alimi konusunda ilk defa Ingilizlerle müzakerelere baslanmistir.
Diger önemli gelismeler arasinda, gemi demirlerinin yapildigi lengerhâne ve gemi plan-projelerinin çizildigi endâzehâne atölyelerinin insasi, yeni gemi diregi monte makinelerinin ve ates tulmbalarinin ihdasi, yeni gemi indirme metodunun benimsenmesi, ilk defa gemi jurnali ya da seyir defteri tutulmaya baslanmasi, gemilerde yeni bir mutfak ve iase sisteminin kurulmasi sayilabilir.

Her ne kadar Fransiz, Isveç ve Ingiliz mühendisler ve askerler, Osmanli gemi ve havuz yapimcilarinin yetismesinde ve yeni savas taktiklerinin tanitilmasinda önemli roller oynadiysalar da, uzun vadede Osmanli Devleti’ni teknolojik bagimliliga götüren sürecin de habercileri konumundaydilar.