LATE OTTOMAN HEADGEAR-FEZ
Fez, the Ottoman headgear was generally used after 1826, is the cylindiric hat usually in red color worn by Ottoman men which was made from felt. The fez name cames from north African country’s city called “ Fez “. It has been used not only Ottoman empire people but also many people in Muslim countries such as Pakistan, Egypt and and Bangladesh. It is commonly used in red color obtained from cranberries dye. However, FES is produced in almost every color and pattern together.Ottoman men have worn different headgears showing their professions & their religious sects for centuries from the foundation to the beginning of 19th century A.D. In 1826 Ottoman Sultan Mahmut II made a decision to destroy Janissary army in the frame of revolution which has been a big problem for the empire. On June 15th, 1826 Janissary army was abolished and the Janisarry troops were either slaughtered or imprisoned that was known as auspicious event in Ottoman history. After the Janissary army troops were destroyed, a new army was established as the name “ Nizam-ı Cedid “ and then a lot of new cahnges were implemented as reforms. Mahmut II also wanted new army troops to wear new uniforms with the new headgears according to the western style. European style of fashion dress began to be spread all over from Ottoman palace but it was too difficult to pray with European-style hat so it was necessary to use an unsheltered hat during the praying performance. As soon as Sultan Mahmut II had seen the fez on navy commander Husrev Pasha’s soldiers as military hats on his return voyage from Morocco, he ordered to be worn fez to all Ottoman troops with a decree in October 1826 so Fez became the official army hat for Ottoman empire. Fez became the part of the Ottoman soldiers uniforms starting from 1840 except cavalry and artillery troops. Fez was worn as an official hat from 1826 until 1925 by the all civil & military officials and turban was used alone by scholars & clerics. On 25 th, 1925 hat law was declared saying that fez and similar titles were banned by law. Fez is known as the symbol of Ottomans especially in Europe beacuse of it has been widely used for centuries. and even today many Europeans felt that Fez widely installed in Turkey. Fez was usually made from felt in red color and it had some small changes from 1826 until 1925. There are three main types of Fez on Ottoman tombstones ; Mahmudi , Azizi and Hamidi Fez with small changes showing the development as military title.