Real History of Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan in Kurulus Osman Season 2
Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan is an important historical character in Kurulus Osman Season 2. There are some details about Yavlak Arslan in Stanford Shaw’s book “History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Turkey”. Besides, we can get the details about Yavlak Arslan from Qutbuddin Shirazi. Qutbuddin Shirazi was an important astronomer, famous in the field of Physics, Philosophy, and Geography. And he wrote a work named “Ihtiyarat-i-Muzafferi” on Yavlak Arslan’s order. So let’s know about the history of Yavlak Arslan. Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan was the head of the Cobanogullari which was a principality of Anatolia in the region of Kastamonu in the 13th century. The founder of this dynasty was Husamettin Coban, who was a prominent statesman and a commander of the Sultans of Rum, during the reign of Kaykaus I and his successor Kayqubad I.
In the early decades of the 13th century, Husamettin Coban was one of the commanders of the raids who extended Seljuq territory in northern Anatolia at the expense of the Byzantine Empire of Trebizond. As a result, he had acquired Kastamonu from Seljuk Empire. It is understood that the task of Cobanogullari Principality was to protect the regions bordering Byzantium in northwest Anatolia. Husamettin Coban named the tribe Cobanogullari after himself. Cobanogullari, a Turkman principality established in Kastamonu under the support and patronage of the Seljuk Empire, carried out political and military activities for a century. Cobanogullari pioneered the social, cultural, and economic development of Kastamonu and its vicinity.
Kastamonu was considered safe heaven in the times of Seljuk commander Husammeddin Coban Bey and his grandson Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan. Many scholars, poets, and people came to this city and loved under the auspices of these rulers. Between 1224 and 1227 CE, Husamettin Coban also led the Seljuq army which captured and fortified the city of Sudak in Crimea. After Husamettin Coban’s death, Kastamonu was ruled respectively by his son Alp Yurek and grandson Yavlak Arslan. Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan was the head of the Cobanogullari between 1280-1291 CE. During that era, he got the title of “Melik Muzaffereddin”. Hoylu Hasan Abdulmumin commemorated Yavlak Arslan with the title of “Melik-ul-um Era” in his work “Kavaidu’r-resail”. The reign of Yavlak Arslan was quite calm in the first years as in the Alp Yurek’s period, there were some problems in almost all of Anatolia due to throne changes and turmoil in the Ilkhanate. Until the last years of Yavlak Arslan’s reign, the Chobanid Beys pursued a prudent policy of allegiance to the Mongols who had established their hegemony over Anatolia following the Battle of Kose Dag.
Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan continued the policy of loyalty to the Ilkhanids as in his father’s period. There was a time in Yavlak Arslan’s life when after the death of Argun Khan, Geyhatu claimed to be the ruler of Ilkhanate and he tried to stop Turkman revolts started in Anatolia. Knowing this opportunity Seljuk Sultan Masud’s brother Ruknuddin Kilic Arslan revolted against his brother. When Geyhatu came to Anatolia with his Army, Kilic Arslan moved to Kastamonu and organized the Turkmen there. Here Yavlak Arslan had to join the fight for the Seljuk throne which was between Seljuk Sultan Mesud and his brother Kilic Arslan, as Kilic Arslan had revolted against Sultan Mesud.
There are two well-known stories in history. Some sources said that Yavlak Arslan opposed Sultan Mesud. Other sources said that Yavlak Arslan opposed Kilic Arslan. Yavlak Arslan along with his son Ali sided with Sultan Mesud and defeated Kilic Arslan. But Yavlak Arslan was killed by Kilic Arslan in the same battle. However, it is certain that Yavlak Arslan was killed in a rebellion in 1292 CE. His grave is thought to be in Taskopru or Kastamonu.
According to history, the Seljuk dynasty’s wars resulted in Conaogullari gaining considerable respect among Turkmen and they used the prestige gained from these victories to become independent. As I have mentioned before, Cobanogullari rulers did a good deal of development in Kastamonu. During Yavlak Arslan’s period, mosques, madrasahs, Darussifa, baths, caravanserais, and lodges were built in Kastamonu. The mosque and madrasah built by Yavlak Arslan in Taskopru in his name are remarkable in this respect. Yavlak Arslan also built a Han (Caravansarai) in the thirteenth century. It is believed that it was one of the first buildings erected after the Seljuk took over this region. There is no information concerning the origin of the name of the Han. But it is confirmed that the Han was built by Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan Bey of the Cobanogullari.
Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan Bey of the Cobanogullari tribe was given the title of Atabey by the Seljuks. This title was given by the Seljuks only to their high ranking officers. He also built a mosque in the region which is dated to 1273 CE. Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan Madrasah and Mosque was built in Taskopru. However, this ware destroyed after the rebellion of Kilic Arslan and the death of Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan, and it was repaired during the reign of Cobanogullari Suleyman Bey. The fountain built next to the Madrasa was destroyed by the fire in 1927 CE and has not survived until today. Two baths were built near the Madrasah, one of which was restored in 2008 CE.
Yavlak Arslan’s two sons, Mahmud Bey and Ali Bey are mentioned in history. After Yavlak Arslan’s death, Mahmud Bey became the ruler of the Cobanogullari tribe. During Mahmud’s rule, his brother Ali Bey stopped the attacks on Byzantines and made a peace treaty with them. With this agreement, the Turkmen next to Ali Bey gathered around Osman Bey. And later the Turkmen selected Osman Ghazi as their UC Bey. Shortly after the assassination of Mahmud Bey, Cobanogullari which was established in 1211 CE, ended in 1309 CE.
News Update regarding Yavlak Arslan
Arslan’s role is going to change rapidly and drastically. So far, he is one of the villains of Kurulus Osman. Many Turkish newspapers have also authenticated this information. As I have mentioned above, Muzaffereddin Yavlak Arslan was head of Cobanoglu Obasi, the famous tribe present in the Kastamonu region of Anatolia. According to historians, he was a creditable man and close to Ertugrul Ghazi. But in this serial, he is presented as a villain which caused embarrassment in the people of his city, Kastamonu. They are much angry about it.
The mayor of Kastamonu Galip Vidinlioglu has complained about it to the producer of Kurulus Osman Mehmet Bozdag. Later, the discussions have been done about it between the mayor and Kurulus Osman team. Recently, the Mayor of the city made a statement. He said that Mehmet Bozdag and his team will make changes in Yavlak Arslan’s role because it is an emotional and sensitive issue. Some important events will take place between Osman Bey and Yavlak Arslan in upcoming episodes and after which he will become a creditable hero instead of a villain. Maybe two or more episodes later Yavlak Arslan will be shown as a true hero.