He dedicates the treatise to Suleyman the Magnificent (1520-1566).
Süleymaniye Ktp., Esat Efendi 1845.
There is a summary in Hüseyin Yılmaz, “The Sultan and the Sultanate: Envisioning Rulership in the Age of Süleymân the Lawgiver (1520-1566)”, unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Harvard University, Cambridge MA 2005.
Risâla fî mâ yalzim ‘alâ al-mulûk (“A treatise on what rulers need”), which has no systematic structure, contains various advice on government and morals. The author stresses that the Sultan should “be diligent in undertaking a fight (jihâd, ghazw, mukâtala) against the people of polytheism (shirk) and sedition (fasâd), eliminating vices (daf’ al-sharr) and cleansing disbelief (izâla al-kufr).” He also advocates against innovations (bid’a). The author also gives instructions to the persons presenting themselves to the Sultan (viziers and other statesmen and visitors): they should be careful to manage his temper, so as to exhort him effectively on his duties. This exhortation is to be considered a duty in the framework of the “commanding right and forbidding wrong” precept, which is praised as the most virtuous form of Holy War. Finally, the author has a long section on the personal life of statesmen and especially of the Sultan: he is adamant in the need for the Sultan to avoid drinking wine, not so much because it is a sin as because “drinking would impair one’s judgment in decision-making, lead to negligence in rulership, and cause failure to protect the realm which might result in losing one’s authority (zavâl al-dawla)”.
Yılmaz, H., “The Sultan and the Sultanate: Envisioning Rulership in the Age of Süleymân the Lawgiver (1520-1566)”, unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Harvard University, Cambridge MA 2005, 65-67