Call for papers

First Sultan’s Trail Conference: Peoples and States – Cultural, Political, Regional Road in the Past and Today

January 31- February 3, 2013, in Novi Sad (Serbia-Vojvodina) and Osijek (Croatia)

The Sultan’s Trail Foundation ( is pleased to announce the First Symposium On The Historical Route from Vienna to Istanbul, a conference that will be held from January 31 until February 3, 2013 in Novi Sad and Osijek.

What is Sultan’s Trail? The Sultan’s Trail is an ancient Roman and later Ottoman road from Vienna to Istanbul symbolizing ages of relations between East and West. The path owes its name to Süleyman Kanuni, sultan of the Ottoman Empire, who made the trip many times during his field trips from Istanbul to Vienna.

For the first time in 1521 when he succesfully conquered the city of Belgrade and later in 1529, and then again in 1532, both times famously failing to penetrate the city of Vienna. Lastly he died in this road in 1566 on his last field trip in Szigetvar. a part of his body was buried there. So this road is named after and is an hommage to the Great Sultan Suleyman.

Contrary to its past, the Sultan’s Trail nowadays constitutes a path of peace, a meeting place for people of all faiths and cultures. The trail starts at the Stephan’s Dom in the centre of Vienna. The path passes through Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia and Bulgaria and ends at the tomb of the Sultan, behind the Süleymaniye mosque in Istanbul.

In addition to its historical significance, the Sultan’s trail also holds the promise of great economic importance. Since the path will often pass secluded rural areas. This support of host communities, combined with the fact that walking is the most human and natural form of moving over the planet, makes the Sultan’s Trail an example of sustainable tourism pur sang.

While the Sultan’s Trail partly uses existing European long distance paths, including parts of the E8 and the Danube cycling-path, other parts of the trail still have to be developed. The recently founded NGO Sultan’s Trail, based in the Netherlands, takes the lead in this, setting out the path and developing a network of accommodations along the route, in private houses, lodges or hotels.

Several experienced long distance hikers have already explored parts of the Sultan’s Trail in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. They share the same opinion: “It was sometimes pioneering but the experience was full of authenticity. The many natural and historical highlights, the varied landscape and the hospitality of the local people contributed greatly to this experience.”

Academic Network

In line with the route’s historical significance as a link between various cultures and peoples from East and West, The Sultan’s Trail Foundation aims to develop an international network of the same designation. Scholars and scientists from a wide variety of countries are already involved in this network. To be involved in this scientific network means taking part in permanent interrelations between scholars, i.e. the exchange of ideas, the launch of joint scientific projects, the exchange of master and doctoral students, the development of study programs, and the publication of joint works.

For facilitating this meetings we wat to organize perodically Conferences. The conferences will bring together scholars (wishing to be) involved in this dense scientific network in order for them to directly exchange ideas.

The first opening conference will be January-February 2013 in Novi Sad and Osijek

The aim of the conference is to create a platform for historians, art historians, and literary critics to share their studies on textual and visual representations of Sultan’s Trail, Via Militaris between 1000 BC and present day. By investigating medieval, early modern and modern Sultan’s Trail in text and images, the conference will serve as an opportunity for an interdisciplinary dialogue among the participants, with the hope of broadening perspectives on Sultan’s Trail’s cultural and material legacy.

In addition to the anticipated papers relating to art, architecture and history of medieval (Roman and Byzantine) and Ottoman, and modern route, the conference organizers would also be keen to include scholars who can explore the following areas relating to studies: music on the Sultan’s Trail, pilgrims’ accounts, diplomats’ accounts, cartography, prints and paintings, numismatics, tombstones, heraldry, Roman and Ottoman itineraries, historic photographs, Archaeological excavations.

Those wishing to participate should send an abstracts of 200-250 words via e-mail by October 31. On November 15, successful papers will be notified. Limited travel bursaries are available for participants without an university affiliation.

Submission Modalities

Proposals for papers should not exceed 500 words and must include the following:

  • Title of the paper
  • Abstract
  • Materials and methods used
  • Author
  • Affiliation
  • and a cv with publications


Please send your proposals to:

Deadline for proposals: 30 October 2012

Announcement of selected proposals: 15 November 2012

Academic papers coordination: Mehmet Tutuncu

Organization and coordination: Lisanne Post ( For more information please visit the website of the Sultans Trail Foundation:

The dates of the Conference are 31 January-3 February 2013.

Calendar of Events:

January 31 – Arrival in Novi Sad
February 1 – Registration, Opening Ceremony, Novi Sad Sessions
February 2 – Transport to Osijek Sessions,
February 3 – Closing Ceremony, Cultural Program, excursion
February 4 – Departure
Striding toward Salvation: Medieval and Renaissance Pilgrimage in Europe and the Mediterranean.

During the Middle Ages and Renaissance, pilgrimage provided an important path to spiritual salvation; as such, a whole range of individuals—from peasants to kings, serfs to sultans—undertook these sacred journeys.

The destinations of pilgrims varied, from the shrines of local saints to the two great pilgrimage cities of Jerusalem and Mecca, as did their motivations. This conference invites papers exploring Christian, Islamic, or Jewish pilgrimage in Europe and/or the Mediterranean between approximately 300 and 1600 CE.

We welcome papers from all disciplines, including art history, history, literature, music, Near Eastern studies, religious studies, and others.

Papers may address the theme of pilgrimage in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to:

  • Historical accounts of pilgrimage
  • Literary accounts of pilgrimage
  • Imagery depicting the act of pilgrimage or associated with a specific pilgrimage site
  • Shrines, relics, or reliquaries
  • The impact of pilgrimage on the politics, economy, or community of a particular city
  • Pilgrims’ souvenirs

The conference will be held on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University (located in University Center, Michigan) on February 22-23, 2013. Those interested in presenting a 20-minute paper at the conference should submit a brief CV and a 200-word abstract to Dr. Emily Kelley at no later than September 7, 2012.

Confirmed keynote speakers: Prof. David Abulafia (University of Cambridge) and Prof. Carole Hillenbrand (University of Edinburgh)

Abstract deadline: 1st December 2012

The Society for the Medieval Mediterranean is proud to announce our forthcoming third biennial conference, with the theme of ‘Trade, Travel and Transmission’. This three-day inter-disciplinary conference will bring scholars together to explore the interaction of the various peoples, societies, faiths and cultures of the medieval Mediterranean, a region which had been commonly represented as divided by significant religious and cultural differences.

The objective of the conference is to highlight the extent to which the medieval Mediterranean was not just an area of conflict but also a highly permeable frontier across which people, goods and ideas crossed and influenced neighbouring cultures and societies.

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers in the fields of archaeology, art and architecture, codicology, ethnography, history (including the histories of science, medicine and cartography), languages, literature, music, philosophy and religion.

Trade, Travel and Transmission in the Medieval Mediterranean Third Biennial Conference of the Society for the Medieval Mediterranean Churchill College, University of Cambridge (UK), 8-10 July 2013

Submission on the following topics would be particularly welcome:

  • Activities of missionary orders
  • Artistic contacts and exchanges
  • Byzantine and Muslim navies
  • Captives and slaves
  • Cargoes, galleys and warships
  • Costume and vestments
  • Diplomacy
  • Judaism and Jewish Mediterranean History Literary contacts and exchanges
  • Material Culture Minority Populations in the Christian and Islamic Worlds
  • Mirrors for Princes
  • Music, sacred and secular
  • Port towns/city states
  • Relations between Jews, Christians and Muslims
  • Religious practices: saints, cults and heretics
  • Scientific exchange, including astronomy, medicine and mathematics
  • Seafaring, seamanship and shipbuilding
  • Sufis & Sufi Orders in North Africa and the Levant Sultans, kings and other rulers
  • Trade and Pilgrimage
  • Travel writing Warfare: mercenaries and crusaders


Please send abstracts of no longer than 250 words, together with a short CV (max. 2 sides of A4) to Dr Rebecca Bridgman (University of Cambridge, Vice-President of the Society for the Medieval Mediterranean) at the following e-mail:

Submissions must be received by 1st December 2012