In memoriam Murat Bilir
From: Amy Singer <email@example.com>
It is with a heavy heart that I write to share the sad news that we have lost another familiar face has left us this week. For over 50 years, Murat Bilir, owner of l'Orient Handicrafts in the İç Bedesten in the Istanbul Kapalı Çarşısı, was a friend to scholars of the Ottoman empire and Turkey, and to the family and friends we sent his way. His miniscule shop was a school in the fine arts of metalwork, woodcarving and other decorative arts. It was a refuge from the hubbub of the çarşı; a place to call in and meet old friends and make new ones. Murat's enthusiastic welcome was constant, his generosity unfailing. As a graduate student, I imposed my limping practice of Turkish on him after long days in the archives, which he patiently corrected, and then he taught me my first Armenian words.
May he rest in peace.
_____________________________Professor Amy Singer
Sylvia K. Hassenfeld Chair in Islamic Studies
Director of Graduate Studies
Dept. of History