Although the province of Pontus-Bithynia formed the northeast boundary of the Roman state, it was governed as a senatorial province for a long time. During the historical process until Trajan’s reign the Roman governors appointed to the province of Pontus- Bithynia were proconsulates at the level of praetor. But after 75 A.D., from the last years of the emperor Vespasian’s reign possibly until the Trajan period we see that the proconsulates to be sent to the province were more experienced. In 110 A.D. emperor Trajan, by the decree of senatus appointed Pliny the younger governor with the title legatee Augusti pro praetore as if this were an imperial province, instead of a governor with the title proconsulate. This fact clearly illustrate the strategical importance of the province.
The Goths moved from Scandinavia to the mouth of the Vistula in 1 A.D. They left these, all or in part, about the middle of the second century, and settled near the Black Sea, where they prospered until about 375. Then, they were divided into 2 groups – the Ostrogoths or East Goths and Visigoths or West Goths. The Ostrogoths who were the eastern division of the Goths that had split into western and eastern kingdoms entered into relations with the Byzantine and were settled even in army of Byzantine Empire. Bursa was overrun in 294 A.D. by the Goths who had their strong administrative systems and military organizations.
The city prospered during Byzantine times after the emperor Justinian The Great who built a palace here. Of major significance for the city’s future was the inauguration of the silk industry in Byzantium under Emperor Justinian; Bursa eventually would become a center of silk production and trade. J. Great Emperor Justinian built a palace and bath here and King Theodora brought 4000 people over Bidunia for several days and held festivals here. Justinian’s wife, Theodora frequented the Bursa hot springs, which still draw both a local and tourist clientele. Today the city juxtaposes modern apartments and traffic overpasses with mosques and trading emporia built in a much earlier era.
The Siege of Bursa (also called Prusa, Prousa, Brusa or Broussa) occurred from 1317/20 until the capture on 6 April 1326, when the Ottomans deployed a bold plan to seize Bursa. After the fall of the city, the son and successor Orhan made Bursa the first official Ottoman capital and it remained so until 1366, when Edirne became the new capital. After this he captured Iznik (Nicea) in 1330, Mudurnu in 1331, Gemlik in 1333, Izmit in 1337, Ankara and Gallipoli-Dardanelles in 1354, and extended the Ottoman Empire to the Asian shores of the Bosphorus in 1352 as well as in Thrace. As a result, Bursa holds a special place in Ottoman history as their founding city, and also as the birthplace of Ottoman architecture.
The Siege of Bursa (also called Prusa, Prousa, Brusa or Broussa) occurred from 1317/20 until the capture on 6 April 1326, when the Ottomans deployed a bold plan to seize Bursa. After the fall of the city, the son and successor Orhan Ghazi made Bursa the first official Ottoman capital. During the years 1328 and 1329 silver coins were stamped in Orhan Ghazi’s name, following his brother’s advise. On the front, they showed the Islamic article of faith. On the other side, it said (in Arabic) “May God make his reign eternal” Thus, the first mint was established in Bursa.
Built in the Seljuk style, Ulucami was ordered by the Ottoman Sultan Bayezid I following the advise of his son in law, Emir Sultan. It was built between 1396 and 1399. The mosque has 20 domes and 2 minarets. When the construction of Ulucami was about to start, there was a non-muslim woman living by her own where the mosque was going to be built. She declined Bayezid I, saying that “My beloved husband told me not to leave this house until I die, so I cannot do anything but obeying his last wish. It is not possible for me to sell this house. Please forgive me my sultan. Bayezid I was quite impressed with this womans passion and told his viziers not to start the construction till she dies. The construction began without touching this womans house. After her death, the house was demolished and a pool was built inside the mosque where the house was located before.
Timur, got into action to rebuild the Cengiz Empire. He conquered the Persia and launched an expedition to the India. The Monarchs of Azerbaijan and Baghdad took Refuge in Yildirim Bayezid. Even Timur reclaimed the Monarchs, Yildirim Bayezid refused this claim and they fell to loggerheads. Timur, who intruded to the Anatolia and plundered the Sivas, continued to marching on in Anatolia with its army. Ottoman Army also took action and both armies encountered in Ankara Cubuk Plain. Yildirim Bayezid was captured by Timur. This was caused a standstill for 50 years for Ottoman Empire. Bursa, Iznik and Izmıt was plundered and burned by Timur, Izmır also conquered.
Between 1428-1429, plague appeared in Ottoman Empire. Emir Sultan a well known philosopher in Islamic and Sufism environment, Haci Ivaz Pasha politician, soldier and architect, Grand Vizier Candarli Ibrahim Pasha and little brothers of Murad the 2nd Mahmud Celebi and Yusuf Celebi whose eyes were probed were died because of that plague. Murad the 2nd directed his force to the Venice after establishing the peace in Anatolia and survived from the plague. Venice Republic were blockading the Gallipoli Strait by keeping Selanik until that time.
Cem Sultan marched on to Bursa from Konya with his army because he was sure that he is going to be murdered by the rule of this father’s famous lawbook. In May 27th 1481, Cem Sultan came to Inegol with his 4000 soldiers. Sultan Bayezid the 2nd, sent an army leaded by Ayas Pasha to the Cem Sultan’s army. Cem Sultan won the battle in May 28th and declared his Monarchy in Bursa. His sultanate took for only 20 days.
It is possible that the first coffee houses of the era opened in Bursa after Istanbul. We learned the Bursa’s famous coffee houses opened in 1550’s from Evliya Celebi. He thought that Ulucami Coffee house, Serefyar Coffee house, Serdar and Cin Muezzin Coffee houses are the famous ones. In 1640’s, when the coffee houses are opened and closed constantly, Evliya Celebi came to Bursa and told that the coffee houses are living social facts. There are 75 coffee houses in Bursa.
Weaving was the oldest and a deep rooted sector by courtesy of the Empire. Naturally the first private enterprise trend was occured in this sector. Turkey’s first silk factory started to produce in 1838 in Bursa. In 1838 there were 50 silk factories and 4500 workers employed in Bursa, where the sericulture developed substantially. There were 37 mechanized silk factory in 1856. At the London Industrial Exhibition in 1851, Turkish cocoons and silks were displayed and this was the first international exhibition which Turkey attended. Bursa Darülharir (Silk house) were established in 1894 to base sericulture upon a scientific foundation.
February 28th 1855, an earthquake occured in Bursa. Official magnitude of this earthquake is 7,5.This eathquake occured in Kemalpasa district, Bursa City and caused a massive disaster in Bursa and other neighbour cities. 300 people died and thousands of houses and offices crumbled and some historical monuments and mosques are also collapsed. Then fire spread around the city and raised the number of death. There was an aftershock occured in April 11th 1855 with 7.0 magnitude. This aftershock effected the area between Gemlik and Mudanya. 1300 people died. Gokmenzade Haci Celebi from Bursa, mentioned this earthquake in this book named Isaret-i Numa written in Ottoman Turkish.
Bursa was the capital city of the Ottoman Empire for a long time and an important city in Anatolia. During the war of independence era, Bursa has had a critical importance so there were major progresses occured in Bursa after the Mondros Truce. With the invasion of Izmir, Greeks, who were launced an invasion to Anatolia by Allied Powers, invaded Bursa in July 8th. Greeks, created an invasion administration and tried to settle in Bursa but they held the city only for 2 years. During this invasion, Bursa were in a major trouble and pressure. There were also terror of Greek and Armenian gangs in Bursa and neighbour cities. Bursa survived from this environment after the Battle of Dumlupinar, by the retaken from national forces in September 10th 1922.