Once Upon a Time We were Neighbors with China


The relationship between the Turks and the Chinese dates back to the early period of our histories. These two races have fought many times and have also engaged in commercial and cultural interactions.

As the Turks became stronger and more powerful in the world after a certain period so the Turks began to put the pressure on the Chinese. China was, after all, their most important neighbor. The Turks forced the Chinese to pay money at various times; for their part, the Chinese wanted to steer clear of problems and avoid invasions, so they built the Great Wall, which today is among the most substantial ruins of the Earth. Most of the time, even the Great Wall could not prevent the storm of Turkish invasions. The Chinese also benefited from the internal disagreement of the Turks, which was in part caused by the Chinese princesses being sent to Turkish tribes.

Even during this period of disagreement between neighbors, when the Chinese needed the Turks’ horses, the Turks needed the Chinese silk. The Chinese even used shopping and trade as a means of creating mess in Turkish politics. While trying to be cautious, Turks was directly on the target of Chinese politics.

The relationship between China and the Ottoman Empire first began with a delegation that traveled from the Ottoman to China in 1423. According to the Ming Dynasty in China, the delegation consisted of 19 people. Although the main purpose of this delegation remains unknown, it is known that they took gifts with them when they visited. In the period of Suleyman the Magnificent (Kanuni Sultan Süleyman), the Ottoman Empire was in good standing with China’s Ming Dynasty. The Ottoman Empire, which dominated the majority of the world, was a neighbor to China.

Once Upon a Time We were Neighbors with China

The Ming Dynasty

During this period, the Ottoman Empire brought innovations in the field of military technology to China. Duo Si Ma and his brother Ba Bu Li, Ottoman ambassadors, went to China and settled in Beijing upon the order of the Chinese Emperor. During their stay in Beijing, Duo Si Ma worked at commander level. He stayed in China for nearly forty years. A Chinese statesman requested of Duo Si Ma to teach him about the Ottoman rifle, so Duo Si Ma indeed shared information to this man about the rifle’s specifics; together, they began to produce the Ottoman rifle in China. In this regard, military technology was learned by the Chinese from the Ottomans.

After ruining the Ottomans’ relations with the China, commotions took place inside and outside of the state. Because of this, the Ottoman Empire gradually began to disintegrate thanks to various battles and agreements. While the Ottoman Empire was the empire of world, the state moved into a period of regression. As a result of every war and agreement, the Ottoman Empire gave away parts of its territories to other states. After a certain amount time, these decreases of the Ottoman State meant it fell behind its neighbors, such as China and other nations. The state which had the greatest territory in the past eventually evolved into the present-day version of the Turkish Republic.