Sultan, dynasty & state in the Ottoman Empire: political institutions in the 16th century

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Kunt, Metin (2003) Sultan, dynasty & state in the Ottoman Empire: political institutions in the 16th century. The Medieval History journal / Special Issue on Tributary Empires, 6 (2). pp. 217-230. ISSN 0304-4181

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/097194580300600203


From its inception around 1300, 'the House of Osman' maintained the ancient Eurasian steppe tradition which kept the system of suc cession open. At a sultan's death, the throne went to the best candidate to emerge in a contest. By the end of sixteenth century, dynastic strug gles, amounting to civil war and the killing of all the brothers of a successful prince, had caused disquiet in Ottoman polity. Subse quently, rules of succession favoured seniority due to circumstances of the age and lifespan of sultans. Also in the sixteenth century, the grand vezir established a personal administration. By the end of the century, the sultan, though himself no longer a charismatic military leader, curtailed the emergence of a minister in charge of policy. Ot toman polity remained a dynastic empire to its end which deliberately curtailed the emergence of independent political institutions.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:D History General and Old World > DR Balkan Peninsula
ID Code:396
Deposited By:Metin Kunt
Deposited On:08 May 2007 03:00
Last Modified:22 Oct 2019 13:20

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