Zeynep Yürekli

Associate Professor of Islamic Art and Architecture & Fellow of Wolfson College


Khalili Research Centre, 3 St John Street, Oxford, OX1 2LG

Phone: + 1865 278226



Research Focus

Early modern Ottoman art, architecture and cultural history: architectural patronage; Sufi networks, shrines and hagiographies; dynastic historiography; illustrated manuscripts – patronage, production, use and circulation 

Teaching Scope

Late medieval and early modern Islamic art and architecture across Eurasia (from the Balkans to the Indian subcontinent) 

Ottoman cultural history, society and religiopolitics

Methodology of Islamic art history and contextual approaches to material culture

Persian and Ottoman Turkish primary sources on Islamic art and architecture

Ottoman manuscripts, archival documents and palaeography

Practical skills for architectural documentation and codicological examination of manuscripts



[forthcoming in 2025] Captured Places: Ottoman Ottoman Historiography and Topographical Illustration (Edinburgh University Press)

Architecture and Hagiography in the Ottoman Empire: The Politics of Bektashi Shrines in the Classical Age (Farnham: Ashgate, 2012; London: Routledge, 2016)

Contributions to journals, books and encylopedias

‘Bir Silahşor, Birkaç Resimli Kitap ve Bilmediğimiz Birçok Şey’, in Zeren Tanındı Armağanı: İslam Dünyasında Kitap Sanatı ve Kültürü / Zeren Tanındı Festschrift: Art and Culture of Books in the Islamic World, edited by A. Erkmen and Ş. Tamcan Parladır (Istanbul: Lale, 2023), pp. 669–79.

[with Serpil Bağcı] 'Book-picking in a Conquered Citadel', in Crafting History: Essays on the Ottoman World and Beyond in Honor of Cemal Kafadar, edited by R. Goshgarian, I. Khouri-Makdisi and A. Yaycıoğlu (Boston, MA: Academic Studies Press, 2023).

'The Sultan, His Monument, and the Critical Public', in A Companion to Early Modern Istanbul, edited by S. Hamadeh and Ç. Kafescioğlu (Leiden: Brill, 2021), pp. 528–54.

'Three Sufi Shrines under the Ottomans', in Religious Architecture of Islam, Volume I: Asia and Australia, edited by H.-U. Khan and K.B.  Moore (Turnhout: Brepols, 2021), pp. 298–313.

'Ibn al-‘Arabi and Rumi in the Twists and Turns of Ottoman Religio-Politics’, in Sacred Spaces and Urban Networks, edited by S. Yalman and A.H. Uğurlu (Istanbul: Koç University Research Centre for Anatolian Civilizations, 2019), pp. 159–75.

'Architectural Patronage and the Rise of the Ottomans’, in A Companion to Islamic Art and Architecture, edited by F.B. Flood and G. Necipoğlu (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Blackwell, 2017), 2: 733–54.

'The Sword Dhū'l-faqār and the Ottomans', in People of the Prophet's House, edited by F. Suleman (London: Institute of Ismaili Studies and Azimuth Editions, 2015), pp. 163–72.

'Two Shrines Joined in One Network: Seyyid Gazi and Hacı Bektaş', in Archaeology, Anthropology and Heritage in the Balkans and Anatolia: The Life and Works of F.W. Hasluck, 1878–1920, Volume 3, edited by D. Shankland (Istanbul: Isis, 2013), pp. 171–89.

'Writing Down the Feats and Setting Up the Scene: Hagiographers and Architectural Patrons in the Age of Empires', in Sufism and Society: Arrangements of the Mystical in the Muslim World 1200-1800, ed. John J. Curry and Erik S. Ohlander (London and New York: Routledge, 2011), pp. 94–119.

'Osmanlı Mimarisinde Aleni Devşirme Malzeme: Gazilerin Alamet-i Farikası' (Conspicuous Spolia in Architecture: A Trademark of Anatolian Frontier Warriors), inGelenek, Kimlik, Bireşim: Kültürel Kesişmeler ve Sanat –Tradition, Identity and Synthesis: Cultural Crossings and Art, ed. S. Bağcı and Z. Yasa Yaman (Ankara: Hacettepe University Press, 2011), pp. 273–82.

'Afyonkarahisar (Afyon Kara Hisar)', in Encyclopaedia of Islam Three, ed. Gudrun Krämer et al (Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2007— [2010]), I: 16–8.

'Ottoman Painting, Venetian Audience, Divergent Content: The Source of a Picture from Taeschner's Album', in Thirteenth International Congress of Turkish Art: Proceedings, ed. G. Dávid and I. Gerelyes (Budapest: Hungarian National Museum, 2009), pp. 759–71.

'Bir Kitabenin Söylemeye Çalıştıkları', Journal of Turkish Studies – Türklük Bilgisi Araştırmaları Dergisi 31 (2007): 339–48.

'Şiir ve Güzel Sanatlar: Klasik Osmanlı Üslupları Arasında İlişkiler', in Türk Edebiyatı Tarihi, edited by T. Halman (Ankara: TR Ministry of Culture, 2006), I: 411–26.

'Şeyh Bedreddin ve Ecinniler: Alışılmışın ve Çalışılmışın Dışında bir Menakıbname', in Şinasi Tekin'in Anısına: Uygurlardan Osmanlıya, edited by G. Kut and F. Büyükkarcı (Istanbul: Simurg, 2005), pp. 721–31.

'A Building Between the Public and Private Realms of the Ottoman Ruling Elite: The Sufi Convent of Sokollu Mehmed Pasha in Istanbul', Muqarnas 20 (2003): 159–85.



'Clash of civilisations' in late medieval Southwest Asia: Interfaith transference of sacred sites and shrines in Anatolia/Thrace and the Indian subcontinent 

Funder: John Fell Research Fund, Oxford University Press

PI: Zeynep Yürekli

Team members: Daniel Burt, Günseli Gürel, Cailah Jackson, Yeliz Teber, Kristyna Rendlova


Writing and illustrating history in the sixteenth century: A synthetic treatment of Ottoman dynastic historiography and the production of illustrated manuscripts in the court atelier

Funder: M4HUMAN programme co-financed by the Gerda Henkel Foundation and the European Commission under the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme for Research

PI: Zeynep Yürekli

Collaborator: Serpil Bağcı (Hacettepe University, Ankara)

Current DPhil Students

Naide Gedikli Gorali: The Kitab-i Bahriyye of Piri Reis

Günseli Gürel: Picturing Marvels, Magic and Monsters at the Ottoman Court, 1574–1603

Fuchsia Hart: The Art and Architecture of Shrines in Iran and Iraq: A Religiopolitical Study of the Reign of Fatḥ-ʿAlī Shāh (1797-1834)

Kristyna Rendlova: The Depiction of Architecture in Ottoman Illustrated Histories: Between Pictorial Conventions, Architectural Reality and Ideology (1550s–1600s)

Yeliz Teber: The Çelebis in the Formation, Expansion and Consolidation of Bektashism in the Early Modern Ottoman Empire

Photograph of Zeynep Yurekli-Gorkay