First excavation work for the Hejaz Railway, 1900

[Hejaz Railway - Servet-i Fünun]. Servetifunoun. Journal illustré Turc paraissant le jeudi. Year 10, Issue No. 507.

Constantinople (Istanbul), Ahmed Ihsan, [29 Nov. 1900 = 16 Nov. 1316 Rumi].

Folio (240 x 334 mm). 16 pp.: (193)-208. With 6 halftone photographic and wood-engraved illustrations (one on the upper cover).


Well-preserved issue of the Ottoman weekly "Servet-i Fünun" ("Wealth of Knowledge"), an avantgardistic literary weekly that informed readers about European, particularly French, cultural and intellectual movements. The present issue, published in the year work began on the famous Hejaz Railway, is illustrated with two photographs showing the Ottoman construction team at work and posing for the camera. They are depicted celebrating "the ceremony of starting the ground works of the railway lines built towards Hejaz with the support of the Caliph [Sultan Abdülhamid II] under the auspices of Islam in the Muzayrib area" on the Jordanian-Syrian border ("Saye-i Diyanet-Sermaye-i Hazret-i Hilafet-penahi'de canib-i Hicaz magfiret-tiraza fers ve temdid olunan simendüfer hatlarinin Müzeyreb mevki'inde ameliyyat-i turabiyyesine resm-i mübaseret", title-page) and undertaking "the First Excavation Process of the Hejaz Railway" ("Hicaz Demir Yollarinin Ilk Ameliyat-i Türabiyesi", p. 196).

A rare survival that gives evidence of how the greatest building project of the era found space even among the pages of an intellectual magazine largely devoted to elegant fashion and the theory of poetry.


OCLC 745305308.