Muhteşem Yüzyıl

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Muhteşem Yüzyıl
Also known asThe Magnificent Century
Written by
Directed by
Country of originTurkey
Original languageTurkish
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes139 (list of episodes)
ProducerTimur Savci
Running time90-150 min.
Production companyTims Productions
Original network
Picture format
Audio formatStereo
Original releaseJanuary 5, 2011 (2011-01-05) –
June 11, 2014 (2014-06-11)
Followed byMuhteşem Yüzyıl: Kösem

Muhteşem Yüzyıl (Turkish pronunciation: [muhteˈʃem ˈjyzjɯl], lit.'Magnificent Century') is a Turkish historical fiction television series. Written by Meral Okay and Yılmaz Şahin, it is based on the life of Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, the longest-reigning Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, and his wife Hürrem Sultan, a slave girl who became the first Ottoman Haseki Sultan.[2] It also shines the light on the era known as the Sultanate of Women. It was originally broadcast on Show TV and then transferred to Star TV.


The series follows the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent (r. 1520–1566).

At age 26, Suleiman learns that his father has died and his own reign is about to begin. He is determined to build an empire more powerful than that of Alexander the Great and to render it invincible. Throughout his 46-year reign, his fame as the greatest warrior and ruler of his age will spread both East and West. With his companion Pargalı İbrahim, Suleiman will achieve great victories, making his name known in the Muslim World. İbrahim, who marries the Sultan's sister, is referred by the Sultan as his brother, friend, and advisor.

Suleiman consolidates his power: Pargalı Ibrahim Pasha, as the Grand Vizier, reinforces the rule of law throughout the empire, meets foreign diplomats, and prepares for military campaigns. All this is set against the backdrop of tension between Christian Europe and the Ottoman Empire.

The series also focuses on the relationships between members of the imperial household, with the former slave girl and eventual chief consort and wife Hürrem Sultan inevitably figuring prominently. Themes include the animosity between Haseki Hürrem Sultan and Mahidevran Sultan, mother of the Sultan's eldest son, the role of Hafsa Sultan, the valide sultan ("Sultan Mother"), and Hürrem's unsteady career from her initial rise while pregnant with Suleiman's son, through her subsequent falls and recoveries, and finally to her eventual return to grace.


The story begins 37 years after the death of Suleiman the Magnificent. It recounts the life of Mahpeyker Kösem Sultan, a female ruler of the Ottoman Empire through her sons and grandson.

Series overview[edit]

Season Timeslot Season premiere Season finale No. of episodes Section range Season's years TV Channel
1 Wednesday 20:00 January 5, 2011 (2011-01-05) June 22, 2011 (2011-06-22) 24 1–24 2011 Show TV
2 Wednesday 20:00 September 14, 2011 (2011-09-14) June 6, 2012 (2012-06-06) 39 25–63 2011–2012 Show TV
Star TV
3 Wednesday 20:00 September 12, 2012 (2012-09-12) June 19, 2013 (2013-06-19) 40 64–103 2012–2013 Star TV
4 Wednesday 20:00 September 18, 2013 (2013-09-18) June 11, 2014 (2014-06-11) 36 104–139 2013–2014 Star TV


The Imperial Family[edit]

Actor name Role name Explanation Seasons Character status
Halit Ergenç Suleiman I The 10th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, son of Selim I 1–4 Major
Meryem Uzerli Hürrem Sultan Haseki Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and legal wife of Sultan Suleiman, mother of the Sultan's five younger children 1–3 Major
Vahide Perçin 4
Nebahat Çehre Hafsa Sultan Valide Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and mother of Sultan Suleiman, Sultan Selim I's widow 1–2 Major
Okan Yalabık Pargalı Ibrahim Pasha Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire, Sultan Suleiman's best friend, Hatice Sultan's husband 1–3 Major
4 Voice only
Nur Fettahoğlu Mahidevran Sultan Sultan Suleiman's consort and the mother of Şehzade Mustafa 1–4 Major
Selma Ergeç Hatice Sultan Sultan Suleiman's sister, daughter of Sultan Selim I, wife of Ibrahim Pasha and mother of his children. 1–3 Major
Yusuf Berkan Demirbağ Şehzade Mustafa Sultan Suleiman's eldest and Mahidevran Sultan's only child, first heir to the throne 1 Supporting
Tunç Oral 1–2
Mehmet Günsür 2–4 Major
Berrak Tüzünataç Mihrünnisa Sultan Şehzade Mustafa's legal wife and mother of his son, daughter of Hizir Hayreddin Pasha 4 Major
Arda Anarat Şehzade Mehmed Sultan Suleiman and Hürrem Sultan's oldest child 2–3 Supporting
Gürbey İleri 3 Major
Ayda Acar Mihrimah Sultan Sultan Suleiman and Hürrem Sultan's only daughter and second child, wife of Rüstem Pasha 1–2 Supporting
Melis Mutluç 2–3
Pelin Karahan 3–4 Major
Ozan Güven Rüstem Pasha Mihrimah Sultan's husband and Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire 3–4 Major
Yiğit Üst Şehzade Selim Sultan Suleiman and Hürrem Sultan's third child and later the 11th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, father of Murad III 3 Supporting
Engin Öztürk 4 Major
Merve Boluğur Nurbanu Sultan Legal wife of Şehzade Selim, later Valide Sultan of Sultan Murad III 4 Major
Erhan Can Kartal Şehzade Bayezid Sultan Suleiman and Hürrem Sultan's fourth child 3 Supporting
Aras Bulut İynemli 4 Major
Mina Tuana Güneş Huricihan Sultan Hatice Sultan and Ibrahim Pasha's daughter, Bayezid's cousin and legal wife 3 Supporting
Burcu Özberk 4 Major
Aybars Kartal Özson Şehzade Cihangir Sultan Suleiman and Hürrem Sultan's fifth and last child 3 Supporting
Tolga Sarıtaş 4 Major
Deniz Çakır Şah Sultan Sultan Suleiman's sister, Lütfi Pasha's wife, Esmahan Sultan's mother 3 Major
Mehmet Özgür Lütfi Pasha Husband of Şah Sultan, later Grand Vizierof the Ottoman Empire after the death of Ayas Pasha, Esmahan Sultan's father 3 Major
Meltem Cumbul Fatma Sultan Sultan Suleiman's sister, Kara Ahmed Pasha's wife 4 Major
Selen Öztürk Gülfem Hatun Sultan Suleiman's first consort and mother of his first child, Hatice Sultan's confidant, chief treasurer of the Harem 1–4 Supporting
Pınar Çağlar Gençtürk Beyhan Sultan Sultan Suleiman's sister, Ferhad Pasha's wife 1–3 Supporting
Gökhan Çelebi Ferhad Pasha Beyhan Sultan's husband, executed due to treason 1 Supporting
Kıvanç Kılınç
Luran Ahmeti Divane Hüsrev Pasha Second-in-command Vizier, Hatice Sultan's third husband 3 Supporting
Gonca Sarıyildiz Fatma Hatun Valide Sultan's and then Mahidevran Sultan's maid, later Şehzade Mustafa's concubine, mother of his son Şehzade Suleiman 2–3 Supporting
Ecem Çalık Esmehan Sultan Şah Sultan and Lütfi Pasha's daughter 3 Supporting
Efe Mehmet Güneş Sultanzade Osman Hatice Sultan and İbrahim Pasha's son 3 Supporting
Serenay Aktaş Ayşe Hatun Şehzade Mustafa's concubine and mother of his daughter Nergisşah Sultan 3 Supporting
Yetkin Dikinciler Kara Ahmed Pasha Fatma Sultan's husband and later Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire 4 Supporting
Yasemin Allen Defne Sultan Şehzade Bayezid's consort and mother of his youngest son 4 Supporting
Alize Gördüm Nergisşah Sultan Şehzade Mustafa's daughter 4 Supporting
Serhan Onat Şehzade Murad Şehzade Selim and Nurbanu Sultan's son 4 Supporting
Koray Efe Yazgan Şehzade Orhan Şehzade Bayezid's eldest son 4 Supporting
Özge Gürel Rana Sultan Şehzade Bayezid's concubine and mother of the majority of his children 4 Supporting
Almeda Abazi Nazenin Hatun (Valeria) Sultan Suleiman's concubine, Raziye Sultan's mother, Nurbanu Sultan's former servant 4 Supporting
Gözde Türker Safiye Hatun Şehzade Murad's concubine, later Valide Sultan 4 Guest appearance

Statesmen and palace officials[edit]

Actor name Role name Explanation Seasons Character status
Burak Özçivit Malkoçoğlu Balı Bey An Ottoman military commander and a keeper of Sultan's privy chamber, in love with Aybige Hatun, Mihrimah's love interest 2–3 Major
Tuncel Kurtiz Ebussuud Efendi Kadı (judge) of Istanbul, later Şhaykh al-Islām (supreme religious leader of the Ottoman Empire) 3–4 Major
Tolga Tekin Barbaros Hayreddin Pasha Grand Admiral of the Ottoman Empire and the Kapudan Pasha (commander-in-chief of the Ottoman Navy), Mustafa's supporter, Mihrünnisa's father 3–4 Major
Yıldırım Fikret Urağ Sokollu Mehmed Pasha Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire after Semiz Ali Pasha 4 Supporting
Hasan Küçükçetin İskender Çelebi Ottoman finance minister renowned for his wealth, an enemy of İbrahim Pasha 2–3 Supporting
Fehmi Karaarslan Ayas Pasha The vizier for the council, later the Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire after the execution of Ibrahim Pasha 1–3 Supporting
İbrahim Raci Öksüz Hadım Suleiman Pasha Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire after the banishment of Lütfi Pasha 3 Supporting
Fatih Dokgöz Semiz Ali Pasha Şehzade Bayezid's supporter, commander of the Janissary Corps, later a third-in-command vizier and finally the Grand Vizier following Rüstem Pasha's death 4 Supporting
Arif Erkin Güzelbeyoğlu Piri Mehmed Pasha Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire before Pargalı Ibrahim Pasha 1–2 Supporting
Murat Şahan Mustafa Pasha Chief Commander of the Navy before Barbaros, later the vizier of the council 1–3 Supporting
Serdar Orçin Sinan Pasha An admiral of the Ottoman Empire as a Commander in Chief of the Navy, Rüstem Pasha's brother 4 Supporting
Murat Tüzün Hain Ahmed Pasha An Ottoman governor and statesman, rival to Ibrahim Pasha, executed due to treason 1 Supporting
Gürkan Uygun Mimar Sinan Chief architect of Sultan Suleiman 3–4 Supporting
Adnan Koç Behram Pasha A vizier at the court, Ibrahim's enemy 2 Supporting
Tansel Öngel Alvise Gritti A Venetian politician influential in the Hungarian Kingdom and regent of Hungary from 1530 to 1534 1–2 Supporting
Erman Saban 2–3
Ozan Dağgez Mehmet Çelebi Şehzade Mustafa's tutor, Piri Mehmed Pasha's son, Hatice Sultan's fiancé 1 Supporting
Altan Gördüm Bekir Ağa An Ottoman official who was executed under Mustafa's order in Manisa on charges of bribery and incitement 3 Guest appearance

Palace servants and concubines[edit]

Actor name Role name Explanation Seasons Character status
Selim Bayraktar Sümbül Ağa Chief eunuch of the harem and Hürrem Sultan's closest confidant, later Mihrimah Sultan's adviser 1–4 Major
Filiz Ahmet Nigar Hatun Servant and apprentice in the harem later chief treasurer, first wife of Rustem Pasha, İbrahim's lover and confidant and mother of his daughter Esmanur 1–3 Major
Sema Keçik Daye Hatun Valide Sultan's maid and chief treasurer of the harem, Sultan Suleiman's nanny 1–2 Supporting
Sabina Toziya Afife Hatun Chief treasurer and leading servant of the harem, Yahya Efendi's mother and Sultan Suleiman's wet nurse 3–4 Supporting
Engin Günaydın Gül Ağa Eunuch that clarifies the harem prohibitions in the first episode, later Hürrem Sultan's confidant 1–2 Supporting
Nihan Büyükağaç Gülşah Hatun Mahidevran Sultan's maid, later Hürrem Sultan's maid 1–3 Supporting
Saadet Aksoy Victoria (Sadıka Hatun) A Hungarian countess. An enemy of Sultan Suleiman 1–2 Supporting
Burcü Güner Fahriye Kalfa (Diana) Mahidevran Sultan's maid, later Hürrem Sultan's maid 3–4 Supporting
Gamze Dar Fidan Hatun Hürrem Sultan's servant, later Mahidevran Sultan's maid 2–4 Supporting
Melike İpek Yalova Isabella Fortuna Princess of Castille, in love with Suleiman 2 Supporting
Cansu Dere Firuze Hatun (Hümeyra) Persian spy and Safavid princess, in love with Suleiman 3 Supporting
Saygın Soysal Mercan Ağa Şah Sultan's confidant 3 Supporting
Kübra Kip Canfeda Hatun Nurbanu Sultan's servant and confidant 4 Supporting
Cavit Çetin Güner Gazanfer Ağa Chief eunuch of the Manisa harem, in service of Nurbanu Sultan 4 Supporting
Yüksel Ünal Şeker Ağa Main chef of the palace kitchen 1–3 Supporting
Hayal Köseoğlu Nilüfer Hatun Hürrem Sultan's servant 2 Supporting
Burcu Tuna Gülnihal Hatun (Maria) Hürrem Sultan's childhood friend and servant 1 Supporting
Gökhan Tercanlı Perçem Ağa A guardian of the palace in service of Hürrem Sultan 2–3 Supporting
Melisa Sözen Efsun Hatun (Nora) Hürrem Sultan's servant, in love with Şehzade Mustafa 2 Supporting
Sebahat Kumaş Esma Hatun Hürrem Sultan's servant 1–3 Supporting
Kaya Akkaya Lokman Ağa A servant in Constantinople and later Kütahya harem, later a keeper of Sultan's privy chamber, in service of Hürrem Sultan 4 Supporting
Ünal Yeter Kiraz Ağa Afife Hatun's servant 3 Supporting
Suat Karausta Zal Mahmut Loyal servant of Rüstem Pasha 4 Supporting
Safak Baskaya Ferhat Ağa A keeper of Sultan's privy chamber 4 Supporting
Merve Oflaz Ayşe Hatun Sultan Suleiman's concubine, rival to Hürrem Sultan 1 Supporting
Elif Atakan Rümeysa Hatun Şehzade Mustafa's concubine 3 Supporting
Büşra Ayaydın 4
Cemre Ebuzziya Helena Hatun Şehzade Mustafa's concubine 3 Supporting
Reyhan Taşören Dilşah Hatun Şehzade Selim's concubine, rival to Nurbanu Sultan 4 Supporting
İrem Helvacıoğlu Nurbahar Hatun (Clara) Şehzade Mehmed's concubine 3 Supporting
Patricya Widlak Cihan Hatun Şehzade Mehmed's concubine 3 Guest appearance

Otherwise associated to the palace[edit]

Actor name Role name Explanation Seasons Character status
Serkan Altunorak Taşlıcalı Yahya Bey One of the famous poets of the era, Friend and supporter of Şehzade Mustafa 3–4 Major
Sarp Akkaya Turahanoğlu Turgul Bey "Atmaca" Friend and supporter of Şehzade Mustafa and then Şehzade Bayezid 4 Major
Ezgi Eyüboğlu Aybige Hatun Valide Sultan's niece and a Princess (daughter of the Crimean Khan), Balı Bey's love interest 2 Supporting
Fatih Al Matrakçı Nasuh Efendi Mathematician, historian, geographer, miniaturist, and inventor, Ibrahim's confidant 1–4 Major
Gökhan Alkan Tahmasp I The 2nd Shah of the Safavid dynasty 3 Supporting
Sermet Yeşil [az; tr] 4
Hamdi Alkan Yahya Efendi An Ottoman Islamic scholar, Sufi and poet, Afife Hatun's son, Sultan Suleiman's foster-brother 3–4 Supporting
Hilmi Cem İntepe Yavuz A supporter of Şehzade Mustafa, serves Piri Reis together with Atmaca 4 Supporting
Alp Öyken Pope Clement VII Pope of the Roman Catholic Church during that time 1–2 Supporting
Seçkin Özdemir Leo A Ukrainian painter, Aleksandra's former fiancé 1 Supporting
Burak Sağyaşar Hekim Pedro A physician who cures Mihrimah's illness and later falls in love with her 4 Supporting
Müjde Uzman Armin Hatun Joşua Effendi's daughter, a Jewish girl who falls in love with Bali Bey 2 Supporting
Güner Özkul Rakel Hatun A wealthy Jewish woman who lends the palace money in time of need 2–3 Supporting
Çağkan Çulha İlyas A soldier in service of Şehzade Mehmed who poisons him and causes his death 3 Supporting
Dolunay Soysert Gracia Mendes Nasi A wealthy Jewish woman who became a prominent figure in the politics of the Ottoman Empire 4 Supporting
Bergüzar Korel Monica Gritti Alvise Gritti's sister 1 Guest appearance
Binnur Kaya Muskacı Hatun A witch who writes amulets 1 Guest appearance
Hümeyra Remmal Elmas A famous astrologer who can tell the future by looking into the sands 2 Guest appearance
Demir Demirkan Deli Sabit Head of the military unit called Deliler in the Battle of Mohács 2 Guest appearance
Büşra Pekin Şirin Hatun A woman who brings fabrics to the harem 2 Guest appearance


Country Local title Network Premiere date Timeslot
 Turkey Muhteşem Yüzyıl Show TV (Season 1–2)
Star TV (Season 2–4)
January 1, 2011 20:00
 Northern Cyprus Muhteşem Yüzyıl Show TV (Season 1–2)
Star TV (Season 2–4)
January 1, 2011 20:00
 Arab League حريم السلطان
Hareem Elsultan
OSN Ya Hala (Pay-per-view) December 13, 2011
Dubai One
 Afghanistan حرم سلطان
Hurrem Sultan
1TV August 2012
 Albania Sulejmani i Madhërishëm TV Klan 22 January 2020 18:20
 Algeria حريم السلطان (Ḥarīm as-Sulṭān) Echourouk TV
Muhteşem Yüzyıl DTV 2015
 Argentina El sultán Telefe April 24, 2017
 Azerbaijan Möhtəşəm Yüz İl Lider TV December 2011 20:10
 Bangladesh সুলতান সুলেমান
Sultan Suleiman
Deepto TV December 16, 2015 19:30
 Bolivia Suleimán El Sultán Bolivisión March 13, 2017 22:00
 Bosnia and Herzegovina Sulejman Veličanstveni Televizija OBN August 22, 2012 20:00
 Bulgaria Великолепният век
Velikolepniyat vek
Diema Family
September 7, 2012
August 29, 2015
 Chile El Sultán Canal 13 December 14, 2014 23:00
 Colombia El Sultán Canal 1 September 10, 2018 22:00
 Croatia Sulejman veličanstveni RTL Televizija August 22, 2012 19:00
 Cyprus ANT1 September, 2012 21:30
 Czech Republic Velkolepé století TV Barrandov December 17, 2011 20:00
 Egypt Al Hayat TV November, 2011
MBC Masr 2014
 Estonia Sajandi armastus Kanal 2 September 1, 2013 20:35
 Greece Σουλεϊμάν ο Μεγαλοπρεπής
Souleiman o Megaloprepis
ANT1 August 28, 2012 (Season 1, 2 3a)
October 21, 2013 (Season 3b)
June 10, 2014 (Season 4)
21:30 (Season 1,2,3)
22:15 (Season 4)
 Georgia დიდებული საუკუნე Maestro TV September, 2013 21:45
 Hungary Szulejmán RTL Klub January 4, 2013 21:30
 Indonesia Abad Kejayaan/King Suleiman antv[3] December 22, 2014 22:00
 Iran حريم سلطان
Hareem-e soltan
GEM TV September, 2012 22:00
 Israel הסולטאן
Israel Plus December 2013 19:00
 Italy Il secolo Magnifico Babel TV June, 2013
 Japan オスマン帝国外伝~愛と欲望のハレム〜 Channel Ginga August 7, 2017 0:00, 16:30
 Kazakhstan Сүлеймен сұлтан Хабар Astana TV March 15, 2012 / May 6, 2020 21:00
 Kosovo Sulltani: Shekulli Madhështor RTV21 January, 2012 20:00
 Kyrgyzstan Даңазалуу доор KTRK March 15, 2012
 Lithuania Didingasis amžius LNK September 7, 2013 15:00
 Latvia Lieliskais gadsimts LNT September 17, 2016 21:05
 Macedonia Величествениот султан Kanal 5 December 12, 2011 21:00
 Malaysia Magnificent Century Astro Bella HD

Astro Mustika HD (Season 1–2)

Astro Ria

PRIMEtime (Season 3-4)

December 4, 2017 23:00 (Season 1–2)

19:00 (Season 3)

14:00 (Season 4)

 Mexico El Sultán Imagen Television April 3, 2017 21:00
 Morocco Medi 1 TV December 2011
 Mongolia Аугаа зуун Edutainment TV April 2019 22:00
 Montenegro Sulejman Veličanstveni Prva TV
March, 2012
October 11, 2013
 Nicaragua El Sultán Canal 10 May 1, 2017 20:00
 Pakistan میرا سُلطان
Mera Sultan
Geo Kahani May 10, 2013 21:00
حورم اور سُلطان
Hürrem Aur Sultan
ATV 2017[4] 20:00
 Panama El Sultán TVN November 9, 2015 20:00
 Perú El Sultán ATV February 15, 2016 21:00
 Poland Wspaniałe stulecie TVP1 October 6, 2014 15:45
 Romania Suleyman Magnificul: Sub domnia iubirii Kanal D Romania September 12, 2012 20:00
 Russia Великолепный век Domashny January 9, 2012 21:00
 Serbia Сулејман Величанствени
Sulejman Veličanstveni
February 9, 2012
September 1, 2013
December 17, 2013
September 19, 2014
 Slovakia Sultán TV Doma December 15, 2011 20:30
 Slovenia Sulejman Veličastni Planet TV March 5, 2013 12:50
 South Korea 위대한 세기 Welike July 8, 2019 23:20
 Spain El Sultán June 13, 2022 21:30
 Tanzania Sultan azam two April 16, 2018 22:00
 Thailand สุไลมาน สุลต่านผู้เกรียงไกร Channel 3 SD [th] August 6, 2018 20.30
 Tunisia حريم السلطان
Hareem Elsultan
Nessma TV April, 2013 20:45
 Uzbekistan Muhtasham yuz yil Milliy TV December 10, 2018 21:00
 Ukraine Величне століття. Роксолана 1+1 October 3, 2012 17:15
 USA Suleimán - El Gran sultán MundoMax July 1, 2014 20:00
 Vietnam Thời đại hoàng kim - The Golden Age HTV7 February 4, 2015 11:00



The show generated controversy and complaints from some viewers, for what they referred to as a "disrespectful", "indecent" and "hedonistic" portrayal of the historical sultan.[2][5] Turkey's Radio and Television Supreme Council, known as RTÜK, claimed they had received over 70,000 complaints about the show and warned Show TV to publicly apologise for wrongly exposing "the privacy of a historical person".[2] The Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan condemned the show as "an effort to show our history in a negative light to the younger generations."[2] An MP for the governing Justice and Development Party, Oktay Saral, went further, threatening to outlaw the "misrepresentation of historical figures" in shows such as Muhteşem Yüzyıl.[6] Small groups of Islamists and Nationalists protested the studio but the show remains successful with consistently high ratings.[2]

Elif Batuman wrote in The New Yorker:

"On the surface, 'Magnificent Century' looks like a quintessential product of the Erdoğan years. Thanks to Erdoğan's economic policies, Turkey has a thriving television industry, capable of staging elaborate period dramas, and a prosperous family-oriented middle class of observant Muslims eager to watch their own values reflected in a historical imperial setting. And, much as Erdoğan's foreign policy has promoted relations with former Ottoman lands, the show has conquered large audiences in Balkan, Caucasian, and Arab countries not known for their fond memory of Ottoman rule. Broadcast to more than two hundred million viewers in fifty-two countries, "Magnificent Century" has accomplished one of Erdoğan's main goals: Making a powerful, non-secularist, globally involved version of Turkey both plausible and appealing.... And yet Erdoğan is not a fan. In late 2012, at the opening of a provincial airport he took a moment to condemn the show's depiction of Suleiman, as well as its directors and broadcasters, hinting at severe judicial repercussions."[7]

According to the report of Radio Free Asia, some Uyghur people were arrested for watching the series in 2020, as the Chinese government considered that it might encourage the thought of the Xinjiang Independence.[8]

International popularity[edit]

Muhteşem Yüzyıl is reported to have an international audience of 200 million viewers [9] in over 50 countries.

The show is part of an ongoing revival of Turkish culture in the Balkans through imported TV shows from Turkey, such as Öyle Bir Geçer Zaman Ki ("As time goes by", number one TV show in North Macedonia), or Fatmagül'ün Suçu Ne? ("What is Fatmagül's fault"), which was top ranked TV show in Kosovo 2012. Serbian sociologist Ratko Bozovic explains the popularity by pointing at the traditional, patriarchal values of the Turkish shows, and the many cultural and linguistic similarities between Turkey and the Balkan countries: "The mentality depicted in those shows has to do with a traditional understanding of morality that people in Serbia remember at some level." According to Bozovic, all Balkan countries have seen dramatic changes in terms of family life, and the Turkish shows help them recall value systems that now seem lost.[10]

In Bangladesh, the show was known as সুলতান সুলেমান (Sultan Suleiman) and it was broadcast on Deepto TV, dubbed in Bangla. Within the first two months of its release in Bangladesh back in 2015, Sultan Suleiman received the highest TV program ratings in Bangladesh.[11] The channel gained the most TRP ratings. Some people demanded a ban on this serial as viewers lacked interests in watching local dramas, however, keeping all these controversies aside the show still went on.[12] After finishing the series, Deepto TV re-broadcast this massively popular show from June 2, 2019.[13]

In Morocco, the series is called Harim al-Sultan ("The Sultan's Harem"). Many people find it visually and aesthetically enjoyable to watch, but viewers have contrasting opinions of the show's depictions of gender and Ottoman rulers. Many Moroccans stopped watching the show because they did not like the morals it presented.[14]

In Greece, the series has become quite popular for people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and ages. Many Greek viewers enjoyed the visuals and oriental decorations present in the show, as well as the cultural proximity and historical ties between the two countries.[14] It has become so popular that Bishop Anthimos of Thessaloniki and the Golden Dawn party condemned the show and urged Greeks not to watch it.[15][16] "No one should watch Muhteşem Yüzyıl, The Magnificent Century," Anthimos said. He added, "By watching the Turkish series we are telling them we have surrendered."[15][17]

In the Republic of North Macedonia, Turkish series have become so popular, that the Macedonian parliament has moved to ban Turkish soaps to reduce the Turkish impact on Macedonian society. Turkish series will gradually be removed and replaced by national programs, according to a 2012 bill authored by Elisabeti Nikolovska who has links to the Macedonian Royal Family.[16][18]

In Chile where the series is called El Sultán (The Sultan) it is aired since December 14 in Canal 13 on prime time with great success. The Spanish voice of Suleiman is the same as the one of Onur in the Turkish soap opera Las mil y una noches. The series is part of a wave of Turkish soap operas that have become popular in Chilean TV.[19] The series debuted right after the penultimate chapter of Los 80, a popular historical family drama produced by Canal 13.

In Pakistan, the show was named میرا سلطان: داستان جلال و جمال (Mera Sultan: Dastan-e-Jalal-o-Jamal; lit. My Emperor: Story of Bravery and Love) and it aired on channel Geo Kahani. Geo Kahani claims that it was the channel's most popular show[20] and received the highest TRPs.[21][22][23][24] However, the channel faced several controversies[25] and serial got banned few times, but still completed the broadcast due to public pressure.[26] The Pakistani drama industry was adversely affected by the popularity of Turkish dramas,[27] and lead actor Halit Ergenç to win first ever International Icon Award in Pakistan's biggest awards show Lux Style Awards in 2017.[28][29]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Turkish scriptwriter, actress Meral Okay passes away". Zaman. 2012-04-09. Archived from the original on 2012-04-15. Retrieved 2012-04-15.
  2. ^ a b c d e Fowler, Suzanne (2011-03-20). "Magnificent Century divides Turkish TV viewers over the life of Süleyman". The Observer. Retrieved 2011-03-20.
  3. ^ Media, Septina Arifiani-Solopos Digital. "KING SULEIMAN ANTV : Sukses Hadirkan Bollywood, ANTV Jajal King Suleiman dari Turki". Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 24 August 2016.
  4. ^ Hürrem Aur Sultan Archived 2018-01-13 at the Wayback Machine on ATV. December 22, 2016. Retrieved February 16, 2017.
  5. ^ "Muhtesem Yuzyil "Magnificent Century" takes Turkey by storm". Istanbul View. Retrieved 2011-03-20.
  6. ^ Moore, Robbie. "Soap Opera Diplomacy: Turkish TV in Greece". The International. Archived from the original on 15 February 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  7. ^ Batuman, Elif (9 February 2014). "Ottomania: A Hit TV Show Reimagines Turkey's Imperial Past". The New Yorker. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
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