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A History of Ottoman Economic Thought: Developments Before by Fatih Ermiş

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By Fatih Ermiş

The Ottoman Empire (1299-1923) existed on the crossroads of the East and the West. Neither the heritage of Western Asia, nor that of japanese Europe, might be absolutely understood with no wisdom of the background of the Ottoman Empire.

The query is usually raised of even if monetary considering can exist in a non-capitalistic society. within the Ottoman Empire, like in all different pre-capitalistic cultures, the industrial sphere used to be a vital part of social lifestyles, and parts of Ottoman fiscal concept can usually be present in among political, social and spiritual rules. Ottoman fiscal considering can't, for that reason, be analyzed in isolation; research of monetary considering can demonstrate elements of the total international view of the Ottomans.

Based on vast archival paintings, this landmark quantity examines Ottoman financial considering within the classical interval utilizing 3 innovations: humorism, circle of justice and loved ones economic climate. Basing the study upon the writings of the Ottoman elite and bureaucrats, this ebook explores Ottoman monetary considering ranging from its personal dynamics, fending off the temptation to hunt sleek fiscal theories and methods within the Ottoman milieu.

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Land in the Ottoman Empire was – with a few exceptions – the property of the state. The most important exceptions to this were the houses and the gardens around them. 4 The state-owned land was divided among sipāhī, who fought as cavalry in the army, and were responsible for training and providing a certain number soldiers. The sipāhī were entitled to the tax revenues of a specific region, and a specific amount from the total income generated by the region was granted him for his personal expenditures, which was called kılıç hakkı (the share of sword).

In this context, reʽāyā means the subjects who pay taxes. This definition can be observed clearly in Lütfi Pasha’s elucidation: When a member of the reʽāyā fulfills some useful tasks for the state and deserves tīmār and becomes in this way a sipāhī, he should not show favour to his relatives and to his father. 16 In this sub-classification, merchants could still be considered reʽāyā. e. those subjects whose income is gained from agriculture. ’17 In connection with humorism, Naʽīmā describes the function of the reʽāyā and appears to use the term for peasants: However, when they [the reʽāyā] become like a malfunctioning spleen without any job, they cannot give this money and the treasury becomes empty.

Although this would also be a valuable study, my intention was the research of those elements of Ottoman thinking which were specific to the Ottoman Empire. 47 Second, there is more research about the nineteenth century Ottoman Empire in general, and a concentration on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was more interesting for this reason. For these reasons, the centuries prior to the nineteenth century, the ‘classical period’ as it is called by Mehmet Genç,48 were chosen as the scope of this study.

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