Ertuğrul (Ottoman Turkish: ارطغرل, Turkish: Ertuğrul Gazi, Erṭoġrıl; often with the title Gazi) (died c. 1280) was the father of Osman I, the founder of the Ottoman Empire. While his historicity is proven by coins minted by Osman I which identify Ertuğrul as the name of his father, nothing else is known for certain about his life or activities. According to Ottoman tradition, he was the son of Suleyman Shah, leader of the Kayı tribe of Oghuz Turks, who fled from eastern Iran to Anatolia to escape the Mongol Conquests. According to this legend, after the death of his father, Ertuğrul and his followers entered the service of the Seljuks of Rum, for which he was rewarded with dominion over the town of Söğüt on the frontier with the Byzantine Empire. This set off the chain of events that would ultimately lead to the founding of the Ottoman Empire. Like his son, Osman, and their descendants, Ertuğrul is often referred to as a Ghazi, a heroic champion fighter for the cause of Islam.
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