Sultan Selim was born on 10th of October 1470 in Amasya. His father was Beyazid II and mother was Gulbahar Hatun. He was ascended to throne in 1512 and ruled the Ottoman Empire for 8 years until 1520.
Selim's nickname was Yavuz, standing in Turkish for "the Stern" or "the Grim". During his rule, the Ottoman Empire reached huge extensions thanks to his conquests especially in the Middle East. He also took the title of being a Caliphate from Abbasids after defeating Mamluk state in Egypt, becoming the leader of the Islamic world as well. The sword, teeth and the mantle of Prophet Muhammad were taken from Cairo to Istanbul, which are kept today in Topkapi Palace Museum.
Selim was one of the Empire's most successful and respected sultans. He was tall, strong, brave, fierce, but very modest despite his powers and was writing poems. He never rested during his rule, he worked hard and organized campaigns, filled the treasury with lots of gold. He was an expert on using the sword, archery, and wrestling. He had long mustache but he cut his beard, unlike other sultans. He also had an earing on one ear.
In 1489 Yavuz Selim became the governor of Trabzon. Due to the threat of the Shiis developing in Persia, he fought against Shah Ismail's forces. In 1508 he overcame Shah's big army corps and drove them out of his borders. He was going to go further but returned on demand of his father.
Yavuz Sultan Selim attacked Georgia and owing to his heroic acts and successes he was named "Yavuz". Yavuz Sultan Selim attacked Caucasia without permission of his father Sultan Beyazid, and wanted to have a governor's post in Rumeli in order to be close to Istanbul. When he couldn't get what he wanted, he attacked Edirne via Rumeli and was defeated by his father's army and escaped to Crimea. In 1512 Sehzade Ahmet, during his father's lifetime, was called to Istanbul to become the ruler. But this time janissaries rebelled hence he had to go back. Upon this, Yavuz Sultan Selim was called and became the ruler. Yavuz was interested in sports and science.
In 1514, before his campaign to Iran, Yavuz Selim I ordered the persecution of thousands of Alevis in the province of Rum in Anatolia in order to avoid the risk of being attacked while marching to that territory for the war.