My Name is Red

My Name is Red

Master Osman Character Analysis

Master Osman is the Head Illuminator of the royal workshop and the most senior and respected master miniaturist. He is a fierce defender of the traditional style of miniaturist painting and he dreads the encroachment of European influence. He hates Enishte and disapproves of the secret book. Butterfly, Stork, and Olive all profess to love him, despite the fact that he physically and sexually abused them during their apprenticeship. While Osman and Black are searching for clues about the murderer’s identity in the Royal Treasury, Osman uses the needle of the great master Bihzad to blind himself, just as Bihzad himself did 80 years earlier. He dies two years after going blind.

Master Osman Quotes in My Name is Red

The My Name is Red quotes below are all either spoken by Master Osman or refer to Master Osman. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of My Name is Red published in 2002.
Chapter 51 Quotes

Hundreds of years hence, men looking at our world through the illustrations

we've made won't understand anything. Desiring to take a closer look, yet lacking the patience, they might feel the embarrassment, the joy, the deep pain and pleasure of observation I now feel as I examine pictures in this freezing treasury––but they'll never truly know.

Related Characters: Master Osman (speaker)
Page Number: 315
Explanation and Analysis:

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Master Osman Character Timeline in My Name is Red

The timeline below shows where the character Master Osman appears in My Name is Red. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 4: I Will Be Called a Murderer
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...nervous. He knew that rumors were circulating about Enishte and the book, and that Master Osman, the Head Illuminator, hated Enishte. The murderer realized with horror that Elegant was “prepared to... (full context)
Chapter 6: I Am Orhan
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...commissioned to create a Book of Festivities for the Sultan under the guidance of Master Osman. The miniaturists still call each other by the nicknames Osman gave them as apprentices: Butterfly,... (full context)
Chapter 7: I Am Called Black
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...on the Book of Festivities. Enishte tells Black that he should go to see Master Osman, who Enishte believes is now blind and senile. Enishte has been given responsibility over the... (full context)
Chapter 11: I Am Called Black
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...spent there as a young apprentice. Black goes into a warm room and sees Master Osman, whom he has not seen in 15 years. Osman is wearing white and, surrounded by... (full context)
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
Black can see in Master Osman’s half-blind eyes that he hates Enishte and is suspicious of Black. Osman asks what the... (full context)
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Master Osman asks a painter to give Black the “survey” of their workshop, which was originally a... (full context)
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...Master Bizhad, who was drunk and blind himself at the time. As Black kisses Master Osman’s hand goodbye, he experiences mixed feelings of adoration, respect, pity, and guilt, in part because... (full context)
Chapter 13: I Am Called “Stork”
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Next, Black arrives at Stork’s house. He mentions Master Osman’s question about time, and asks Stork for his thoughts. Stork begins his response by discussing... (full context)
Chapter 14: I Am Called “Olive”
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...was away, Black had been jealous of the miniaturists in Istanbul. Black mentions that Master Osman discussed the connection between painting and blindness and Olive reflects that painting brings light to... (full context)
Chapter 17: I Am Your Beloved Uncle
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
...that he has most faith in Olive out of all the miniaturists. Enishte sees Master Osman and there is an awkward tension between them. Enishte knows that Osman is angry about... (full context)
Chapter 18: I Will Be Called a Murderer
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...The murderer recalls that in his youth, he and all the other apprentices loved Master Osman. It was Osman who gave the apprentices their nicknames, and the murderer feels emotional thinking... (full context)
Chapter 21: I Am Your Beloved Uncle
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...Black the picture of Death and tells him it was painted by Butterfly, whom Master Osman has been in love with for years. Enishte says he knows that, after they leave... (full context)
Chapter 38: It Is I, Master Oman
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Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Master Osman expresses a wish to counter what he perceives to be false accusations aimed at the... (full context)
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Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
The Head Treasurer mentions the book and states that the Sultan thought Master Osman would be too busy to work on it. He adds that the Sultan is furious... (full context)
Chapter 40: I Am Called Black
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...Just as Black thinks he is about to die, they remove the vice and Master Osman enters, telling him that the Sultan has ordered that he not be tortured. The Sultan... (full context)
Chapter 41: It is I, Master Osman
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Master Osman admits that he was horrified when he first saw the illustrations of the book, and... (full context)
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Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
Master Osman answers with a parable about a shah who loved two things: illustrated manuscripts and his... (full context)
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Master Osman and Black look through the book and are able to attribute particular illustrations to Olive,... (full context)
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Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
Next Black and Osman consider Butterfly. Osman admits that he finds it unbelievable that a man could be both... (full context)
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Black and Osman move on to Stork, who Osman claims is “ambitious and conceited.” Osman admits that if... (full context)
Chapter 42: I Am Called Black
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
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Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Just when Master Osman and Black have finished poring over the illustrations for the book, one of the Commander’s... (full context)
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Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
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Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
Master Osman states that “no miniaturist in his right mind would depict a horse using a real... (full context)
Chapter 44: I Am Called “Butterfly”
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...page and tries to envision a horse that will please both the Sultan and Master Osman; immediately, he begins to draw at a fast pace. Butterfly basks in his own talent... (full context)
Chapter 48: I, Shekure
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...to reassure her. Shekure tells Black that he shouldn’t be cooperating with Enishte’s enemy, Master Osman, in order to find Enishte’s murderer. However, Black insists that Enishte cannot see them now.... (full context)
Chapter 49: I Am Called Black
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
...Black slips out and goes to the mosque to pray. He then goes to Master Osman’s house and onto the palace, where he and Osman meet the Commander of the Imperial... (full context)
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Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...feels frightened by the chamber and the huge array of objects held within it. Master Osman asks to see the books that Shah Tahmasp sent as a gift 25 years ago.... (full context)
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
...exhausted from looking at all the paintings and has to take a break. Eventually, Master Osman concludes that by imitating the paintings that came before them, miniaturists have “depicted the gradual... (full context)
Chapter 51: It is I, Master Osman
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
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Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Master Osman tells a story about Abdullah Khan, a suspicious ruler who did not allow his miniaturists... (full context)
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Master Osman wonders if Black and Jemzi Agha have the same intense emotional reaction to the books... (full context)
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In the middle of the night, after Black has fallen asleep, Master Osman discovers the enormous Book of Kings. Osman feels distracted as he looks through it and... (full context)
Chapter 52: I Am Called Black
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
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Master Osman shows Black Bihzad’s needle, and tells him that miniaturists have a duty to try to... (full context)
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Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
Master Osman declares that he will stay and stare at these books until he is forced to... (full context)
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Master Osman goes on to denounce Enishte for leading the miniaturists to betray him. He claims that... (full context)
Chapter 55: I Am Called “Butterfly”
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
...being an Erzurumi. He went to the coffeehouse to disprove these accusations. Black repeats Master Osman’s words about Butterfly’s “flaws,” and Butterfly is hurt. He accuses Black and Enishte of treachery... (full context)
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
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...room and is tempted to bite Black’s ear. Black asks Butterfly to describe how Master Osman used to caress and beat him, and Butterfly does so with enthusiasm. Butterfly insists that,... (full context)
Chapter 56: I Am Called “Stork”
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
...the clue of the horse’s nostril suggest that the murderer is Olive, but that Master Osman suspects Stork. (full context)
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...Black came to his house “out of loneliness and desperation.” Stork doesn’t wish to insult Osman in front of Butterfly, whose close, erotic relationship with Osman is well-known. Instead, he acknowledges... (full context)
Chapter 57: I Am Called “Olive”
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
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Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
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...He thinks that Stork, meanwhile, hopes to “get rid” of all of them, including Master Osman, so that he can become Head Illuminator. Stork and Black seize one of Olive’s leather... (full context)
Chapter 58: I Will Be Called a Murderer
Storytelling, Identity, and Perspective Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Sin Theme Icon
Love, Desire, and Greed Theme Icon
...they’ve painted as if they were their own memories. Suddenly, the murderer declares that Master Osman will either betray and kill them, or they should betray and kill him. There is... (full context)
Creation vs. Representation Theme Icon
Life, Death, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...great master Bihzad used it to blind himself. He adds that the previous night, Master Osman used it to blind himself in the Royal Treasury, and he threatens to do the... (full context)
Chapter 59: I, Shekure
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...altogether. Enishte’s book is never finished; Hasan flees and is never heard from again. Master Osman dies two years after going blind, and Stork becomes Head Illuminator. Butterfly spends the rest... (full context)