Posts Tagged ‘History’

Postpone the introductions cos I’m mad!

Ok I know I’m supposed to start off with who I am and why I’m starting a blog and customary blah blah blah. But thing is, I’m reading Marlowe’s “Tamburlaine the Great : Part 2” and having finished the first part last night I cannot get over the depiction of the Turkish emperor and wikipedia’s incompetence.

Sorry, that was confusing so I’ll start at the beginning. I read the first part last night and the names of all the characters are given in typical English fashion, i.e. in such a way that when you read them you would probably not recognise your own name. Example: the Quran is written as “Alcoran”. Enough said.

So, to get to the point, Marlowe has written the Turkish Emperor’s name as “Bajazeth”. I read the whole play with a slight feeling that this might be the Bayezid the Turks are so proud of and after whom they’ve named the Grand Bazaar area in Istanbul. So today, in the middle of scene 1 of the second part of the play, I decided to google the name. Sure enough, that’s who he turned out to be. But – and it’s a BIG “but”- there is no verifiable information on wikipedia. Marlowe (as is to be expected from Orientalists of that period) has portrayed the emperor as a blustering fool whose only honourable act was to commit suicide – not considering the fact that the suicide is particularly horrendous. Wkipedia – that treasured tool of our enlightened current generation – only tells us what Marlowe wrote. Where did responsible research go?

Hmm- I think I’ll try to find out about it in a “book” – yup, that thing with pages that needs reliable sources and facts to be published (well, mostly at least).

Note to self: it could be pretty embarrassing if Marlowe’s version turns out to be correct. But on the positive side, at least I won’t have blindly accepted something that smells suspiciously like propaganda!