A native of western Flanders, Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq served in several posts as diplomatic representative for the Habsburg ruler Ferdinand I (King of Bohemia and Hungary, 1526-64, and Holy Roman Emperor, 1556-64). Busbecq's most famous mission was undoubtedly to the Ottoman Empire at the zenith of its power and glory during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. In four letters to his friend Nicholas Michault--who had been Busbecq's fellow student in Italy and afterwards was imperial ambassador to the Portuguese court--he details impressions on everything he saw and experienced in Turkey, including landscapes, plants, animals, Islam, ethnic groups, architecture, slavery, military matters, court practices, clothing, gender and domestic relations, and the Sultan himself. Busbecq was given the assignment of using diplomacy to check the raids of the Turks into Hungary, and he proved very effective with his quick sympathy, appreciation of the Turkish character, and untiring patience. He returned from Constantinople in the autumn of 1562 with an established reputation as a diplomatist. The Turkish Letters is a treasure of early travel literature, reflecting Busbecq's rich literary talent, classical education, love for collecting antiquities, and remarkable power of observation. It offers invaluable lessons on understanding and bridging cultural divides.Busbecq, Ogier Ghislain de is the author of 'Turkish Letters Of Ogier Ghiselin De Busbecq Imperial Ambassador At Constantinople, 1554-1562', published 2005 under ISBN 9780807130711 and ISBN 0807130710.