Mehmed VI

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Mehmed VI
Caliph of Islam
Amir al-Mu'minin
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques
Sébah & Joaillier - Sultan Mehmed VI.jpg
Photograph of Mehmet VI by Sébah & Joaillier, c. 1920
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
Reign 3 July 1918 – 1 November 1922
Sword girding 4 July 1918
Predecessor Mehmed V
Successor Sultanate abolished
Grand Viziers
Caliph of Islam
Reign 3 July 1918 – 19 November 1922
Predecessor Mehmed V
Successor Abdülmecid II
Head of the House of Osman
(in exile)
Pretence 19 November 1922 – 16 May 1926
Predecessor Mehmed V
Successor Abdülmecid II
Born (1861-01-14)14 January 1861
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
Died 16 May 1926(1926-05-16) (aged 65)
Sanremo, Italy
Burial Damascus, Syria
Spouses Nazikedâ Kadınefendi
Inşirah Hanımefendi
Müveddet Kadınefendi
Nevvare Hanımefendi
Nevzad Hanımefendi
Issue From the 1st marriage:
Princess Münire Sultan
Princess Fatma Ulviye Sultan
Princess Rukiye Sabiha Sultan Hanım Efendi
From the 3rd marriage:
Prince Mehmed Ertuğrul Efendi
House House of Osman
Father Abdülmecid I
Mother Gülüstü Kadın Efendi
Religion Islam
Royal styles of
Mehmed VI
Reference style His Imperial Majesty
Spoken style Your Imperial Majesty
Alternative style Sire
Departure of Mehmed VI, last Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, 1922
Sultan Mehmed VI of the Ottoman Empire.jpg

Mehmed VI (Ottoman Turkish: محمد السادسMeḥmed-i sâdis, وحيد الدين Vahideddin, Turkish: Vahideddin or VI. Mehmed), who is also known as Şahbaba (meaning "Emperor-father") among his relatives, (14 January 1861 – 16 May 1926) was the 36th and last Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, reigning from 1918 to 1922. The brother of Mehmed V, he succeeded to the throne as the eldest male member of the House of Osman after the 1916 suicide of Abdülaziz's son Yusuf Izzettin Efendi,[1] the heir to the throne. He was girded with the Sword of Osman on 4 June 1918, as the thirty-sixth padishah. His father was Sultan Abdülmecid I and mother was Gülüstü (1831 – May 1861), an ethnic Abkhazian, daughter of Prince Tahir Bey Çaçba and his wife Afişe Lakerba, originally named Fatma Çaçba.[2] Mehmed was removed from the throne when the Ottoman sultanate was abolished in 1922.


He was born in the Dolmabahçe Palace or the Beşiktaş Palace, Beşiktaş, both in Istanbul.[3][4]


The First World War was a disaster for the Ottoman Empire. British and allied forces had conquered Baghdad, Damascus, and Jerusalem during the war and most of the Empire was divided among the European allies. At the San Remo conference of April 1920, the French were granted a mandate over Syria and the British were granted one over Palestine and Mesopotamia. On 10 August 1920, Mehmed's representatives signed the Treaty of Sèvres, which recognized the mandates and recognized Hejaz as an independent state.

Turkish nationalists rejected the settlement by the Sultan's four signatories. A new government, the Turkish Grand National Assembly, under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) was formed on 23 April 1920, in Ankara (then known as Angora). The new government denounced the rule of Imperial Sultan Mehmed VI and a temporary constitution was drafted.

Exile and death[edit]

The Turkish Grand National Assembly abolished the Sultanate on 1 November 1922, and Mehmed was expelled from Constantinople. Leaving aboard the British warship Malaya on 17 November, he went into exile in Malta; Mehmed later lived on the Italian Riviera.

On 19 November 1922, Mehmed's first cousin and heir Abdülmecid Efendi was elected Caliph, becoming the new head of the Imperial House of Osman as Abdülmecid II before the Caliphate was abolished by the Turkish Grand National Assembly in 1924.

Mehmed died on 16 May 1926 in Sanremo, Italy, and was buried at the Tekkiye Mosque of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent in Damascus.[5]

Marriages and issue[edit]

First marriage and issue[edit]

His first marriage was to Abkhazian HH Emine Nazikedâ Kadınefendi (Sukhum, Abkhazia, 9 October 1866 - Maadi, Cairo, 1944 and buried there) in the Ortaköy Palace, Istanbul, on 8 June 1885, daughter of Prince Hasan Ali Bey Marşan by his wife Princess Fatma Horecan Aredba.[2] They had 3 children:

  • Princess Münire Sultan (1888).
  • Princess Fatma Ulviye Sultan (11 September 1892, Ortaköy Palace, Ortaköy, Istanbul, – 25 January 1967, İzmir and buried at Çengelköy, Üsküdar, Istanbul, first married to HE Damat Ismail Hakki Okday Beyefendi (Athens, 28 October 1881 - Istanbul, 11 October 1977) at the Kurucheshme Palace, Istanbul, on 10 August 1916, with issue; second marriage to Damat Ali Haidar Beyefendi (Göztepe, Istanbul, 20 September 1889 – Istanbul, 5 February 1962) at the Nişantaşı Palace, Nişantaşı, Pera (today Beyoğlu), on 1 November 1923, also with issue.
  • Princess Rukiye Sabiha Sultan Hanım Efendi (the Ortaköy Palace, Ortaköy, Istanbul, 19 March/1 April 1894 – Istanbul, 26 August 1971), married to her cousin Prince Şehzade Ömer Faruk Efendi (the Ortaköy Palace, Istanbul, 27/29 February 1898 – 28 March 1969/1971), son of Abdülmecid II, at the Yıldız Palace, Istanbul, on 29 April 1920 as his first wife. Their issue was:
    • Princess Fatma Neslişah Osmanoğlu Sultan (Istanbul, Nişantaşı, Nişantaşı Palace, 4 February 1921 – 1 April 2012), married in Heliopolis Palace, Cairo, 26 September 1940 to her cousin Damat Prince Muhammad Abdel Moneim Beyefendi (Alexandria, Montaza Palace, 20 February 1899 – Istanbul, 1/2 December 1979, buried in Cairo), Heir Apparent to the Throne of Egypt from 1899 to 1914, created HH in 1922, created HRH in 1952, Regent of Egypt from 1952 to 1953, and had issue.

Second marriage[edit]

His second marriage was to Ubykh HH Seniye Inşirah Hanımefendi (Batumi, 10 July 1887 - Cairo, 10 June 1930) at the Çengelköy Palace, Çengelköy, Üsküdar, Istanbul, on 8 July 1905, daughter of Aziz Bey Voçibe.[2] The marriage ended in divorce on 7 November 1909. No issue

Third marriage and issue[edit]

His third marriage was to Abkhazian HH Şadiye Müveddet Kadınefendi (Adapazarı, 12 October 1893 – Çengelköy Palace, Çengelköy, Üsküdar, Istanbul, 1951 and buried there), at the Çengelköy Palace, Çengelköy, Üsküdar, Istanbul, on 25 April 1911, daughter of Kato Davut Bey Çıhcı by his wife Ayşe Hanım.[2] Their only issue was:

Fourth marriage[edit]

His fourth marriage was to Abkhazian HH Nevvare Hanımefendi (Adapazarı, 4 May 1901 – ?) at the Dolmabahçe Palace, Istanbul, on 20 June 1918. They divorced on 20 May 1924, daughter of Mustafa Bey Çıhcı by his wife Hafize Kap,[2] without issue.

Fifth marriage[edit]

His fifth marriage was to Turkish HH Nimet Nevzad Hanımefendi (Istanbul, 2 March 1902 – bef. 1985/199?) at the Yıldız Palace, Istanbul, on 1 September 1921, daughter of Şaban Efendi Bargu by his wife Hatice Hanım,[2] and was without issue.

Titles and styles[edit]

His Imperial Majesty, the Grand Sultan Mehmed VI Vahid ed-din, Sultan of the Ottomans, Commander of the Faithful and Successor of the Prophet of the Universe.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Freely, John, Inside the Seraglio, 1999, Chapter 16: The Year of Three Sultans.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Harun Açba (2007). Kadın efendiler: 1839-1924. Profil. ISBN 978-9-759-96109-1. 
  3. ^ Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911), The Encyclopædia Britannica 7 (3), Constantinople, the capital of the Turkish Empire .
  4. ^ Britannica, Istanbul:When the Republic of Turkey was founded in 1923, the capital was moved to Ankara, and Constantinople was officially renamed Istanbul in 1930.
  5. ^ Freely, John, Inside the Seraglio, published 1999, Chapter 19: The Gathering Place of the Jinns

Further reading[edit]

  • Fromkin, David, 1989. A Peace to End All Peace: The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East ISBN 0-8050-0857-8

External links[edit]

Media related to Mehmed VI at Wikimedia Commons

Mehmed VI
Born: 14 January 1861 Died: 16 May 1926
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Mehmed V
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
3 July 1918 – 1 November 1922
Succeeded by
Sultanate abolished
Sunni Islam titles
Preceded by
Mehmed V
Caliph of Islam
3 July 1918 – 19 November 1922
Succeeded by
Abdülmecid II
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Sultanate abolished
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
1 November 1922 – 19 November 1922
Abdülmecid II