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A Civic Initiative for the Founding of a Museum in the Ottoman Province around 1850

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Chapter Summary

The last few decades witnessed a steep increase in research on museums, both on individual establishments and on the museum as a social institution. This chapter examines a case of what might be described as a civic initiative for the establishment of one museum in the early years of the Ottoman age of reforms. It broadens current understandings of museums in the Ottoman Empire by balancing the centrist perspective of existing studies on this issue and the resulting conception of the emergence of museology and archaeology in the Ottoman realm as the result of a negotiation of power between civilizational metropolises, preferably on the axis Paris and Istanbul. The chapter discusses the case of a Bosnian friar and his project for a systematic collection of antiquities and its conversion into what he called a "museum". It also reflects the implications of this episode for the historiography of the Ottoman Empire.

Keywords: archaeology; Bosnian friar; Istanbul; Ottoman Empire; Turkish museum



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