THE ABORTION (ISKAT-I CENIN) IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

Abstract

Author(s): Ar. Gör. Fatma MEK, Doç. Dr. Haldun EROLU, Ar. Gör. Güven DNÇ

Ottoman Empire gave great importance to family life and especially to the rights and health of children. The Ottoman Empire introduced the necessary legal regulations to protect the rights of children and to make them grow up as healthy citizens. The purpose of these regulations was to prevent the decrease of the population in the Empire apart from its humane aspect. For this purpose the Empire provided financial support to families that have a lot of children. Despite this fact, some families who still suffer from financial difficulties attempted to end the pregnancy and this caused the population of the Empire to decrease. For the purpose of preventing the decrease of the population before the Ottoman Reform (Tanzimat Decree) the Emperor issued imperial decree and after the Reform the law of punishment and penalties were introduced to prohibit the procure of abortion. Despite all these laws and regulations, the people who still had abortion or who helped the procure of abortion were punished. The kinds of punishment were; imprisonment, fine, condemnation to the galleys and exile.

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