Villagers want to bring back 510-year-old “one day sultanate of women” traditional fest

Edip Tekin- Faruk Kahraman / Bursa, Aug 27 () – In Kestel district of western province of Bursa, women of Kozluören village want to bring back the 510-year-old traditional fest allowing women of village to take over the administration for one day every year.

The residents told they haven’t been able to celebrate this fest, which dates back to Ottoman State and is defined as “one day sultanate of women”, due to bad straits in the last four years. Women of the Kozluören village told they want to bring back this tradition so it wouldn’t fall into oblivion.

Within the fest, the latest held in 2011, women of the village were seizing the administration after having bundled off all the men despite children. With respect to the customs, wife of the village headmen was taking over her husband’s work, while made men had to help the female village headmen. Meanwhile, village’s grocery and kahvehane [traditional coffee house] were in women’s charge for one day.

Women that were playing card games and backgammon in kahvehane, riding on a swing and dancing together, were also offering some fried meat, rice, dried beans, ayran, dessert, and other traditional food to other women, visiting the village where “women rule” from different provinces.

Meanwhile, men’s access to the village was strictly prohibited until the evening prayer, thus men were flocking to wrestling fests that they were holding abroad, welcoming visitors.

This unique custom, however, has been in danger due to lack of funding. Therefore, the village headman Rahmi Ersoy called on public for finding a sponsor to the fest, which cost around 70,000 liras. Otherwise, a custom will be wiped off the history, while female villagers would not be able to “run the world” even for a day.


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