EVLİYA ÇELEBİ

How many years of his life can a man spend on the road?

How many people can he know? How many beliefs can he learn? How many cultures can he keep alive in his scripts?

Evliya Çelebi, while writing everything he saw on paper, did he know he was going to sign a book of travels that would be passed down for generations

Evliya Çelebi, who received a very good education, started to work in the palace after completing his education in Enderun (a special school in the ottoman palace). Despite having a bright future, he decided to start off following a dream he had. 

Thus an adventure that would last for almost fifty years had begun. He scoured almost every part of the Ottoman Empire at that time and left a ten-volume work behind. Being a traveler was a childhood dream of his and when his success in literature was added to his dreams, a magnificent work emerged that differs from the works and writers of the period.

The Seyahatname (Book of Travels), which has an important place in the fields of cultural history and travel, also includes details from Evliya Çelebi's life.


Who is Evliya Çelebi? Here’s His Life in Brief

Evliya Celebi was born in Istanbul on March 25, 1611, according to the Gregorian calendar. His father Derviş Mehmed worked as an Ottoman palace master jeweler and participated in many wars.

Evliya Celebi, who received education on machinery and took music, calligraphy and foreign language lessons, became a hafiz by memorizing the Qur'an. Evliya Celebi, who often found himself in the palace during the reign of Murad IV, gained the appreciation of the Sultan by dint of his elocution and occasionally he referred to his palace days in his book of travels.


Evliya Çelebi's Book of Travels is on the UNESCO World Memory List

Evliya Çelebi narrated his experiences in his writings in a realistic, literal and simple language. Wars, diseases and interesting people… He often included idioms that the public could understand and occasionally sank into a fantastical narrative.  

Was he on his way to see the whole world? Or did he only go as far as he wished to go?

Evliya Çelebi, who was a devout Muslim and grew up with the Ottoman culture of the period, embraced different cultures and beliefs understandingly in his scripts. Sometimes, in a humoristic tongue, he included stories that never had existed to attract the attention of his readers. Women giving birth to elephants, prophesying caves...

The Book of Travels, which was added to the UNESCO World Memory List in 2013, contains a wide range of information from food recipes to political and social order. Evliya Çelebi's Book of Travels is a unique work that should definitely be read. 

One of the most important features of his writings is the interwoven use of past, future and present moments. Evliya Çelebi used this writing method in almost all of his works. He played with time as he wished, and divergently fictionalized his time travel in the articles he narrated about his travels.


In the days of old, this magic used to belong only to the books, they introduced the readers to new people and took them to lands they had never been to. Then motion pictures rolled up … We watched the world through someone else's eyes. We walked in the minds of various people through a writer, a director and a camera.

Traveling in Time and Space is Possible with Augmented Reality Technology

On the other hand, at the moment, we are passing to a different dimension via technology. Virtual reality and augmented reality applications open the door to time travel slightly. A world where reality and imagination converge is being fictionalized by artificial intelligences. We are able to carry this innovation along us through a small phone.

There are plenty of examples concerning artificial intelligence applications. Everything is spread out in front of us via virtual tours, training and virtual guides in a mobile application.

Technology adds another dimension to tourism and history. It is possible to visit every period of history by dint of artificial intelligence applications in tourism. Who wouldn't like to meet Evliya Çelebi and wander through the hidden corridors of the past?

When we go to a historical place, we see the past as it is today. We take what our imagination and an image give us from historical trips. 

How was the place we saw used to be in the past? How did they use that gear in daily life? We try to predict yesterday with a few sentences of artifact description.

However, augmented reality gives the opportunity to experience one-on-one; conditions of the period, places which are visited and works of art. This experience offered by virtual travel applications is very different. While the pleasure of being in another country in the world cannot be discussed when you wake up one morning, how does it sound to travel to the past history you would like, of the country you want?

Technology and human… Time and space… Past and future… All are getting blended in augmented reality technology.

Although it is not possible for everyone to take the roads like Evliya Çelebi, it is in our hands to become a History Traveler in modern-day by discovering different lives and histories owing to technology. Through the GoArt Planet application, you can travel in time and explore history under the virtual guidance of Evliya Çelebi.

We have preferred telling you about another aspect of the question 'Who is Evliya Çelebi?' apart from the stereotypical answers… What do you think?

Could the famous explorer of the 17th century be the inspiration for today's real-time, augmented and virtual reality applications?

We leave two of our favorite descriptions in Evliya Çelebi's book of travels below for you. Do not forget to take a look at history upon the words of this powerful writer and view his works, which have an important place in terms of travel literature. Have a great exploration!


ANKARA CASTLE

“It is a famous castle known among all sultans and kings. When viewed from the north, it is a pearly, white swan-like castle with high layers rising one above the other. 


HARPUT CASTLE

 “It is a strong fortress, a citadel of which has rebelled against the sky and is built on a weird, strange craggy rock, tall from four corners. It has a gate, inside the castle there are about a thousand houses covered with clean terra. Even water cisterns and wheat warehouses are here. It has a castle lord, a chamberlain, a house of mehter, castle soldiers, enough ammunition, and king cannons. Once Timur became incapable during his conquest, and then he was able to besiege with a regression and own it with aid. It is a highly solid and steep castle. Although it has high mountains which are variform (polymorphous) for transport, no harm strikes from that. While this inner castle is built on a craggy rock, it has a ditch. And the water and air of the bathhouse in front of the gate of the castle is nice, the building is pleasant and admired.”