The first, hesitant steps of Ottoman protocol and diplomacy into modernity (1676–1725)

Artan, Tülay (2021) The first, hesitant steps of Ottoman protocol and diplomacy into modernity (1676–1725). Court Historian, 26 (1). pp. 29-43. ISSN 1462-9712 (Print) 2056-3450 (Online)

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From 1676 to 1725, the Ottoman state drew up seven protocol codes for regulating court rituals, processions or celebrations. Taken together, they reveal a complex evolution. Their overall context and raison d’être was a major crisis in governance. Around the middle of the seventeenth century, a combination of external threats with internal unrest became so grave that the sultan and his family, accompanied by numerous court dignitaries and officials, were forced to leave Istanbul and take refuge in Edirne. For the next fifty years or so, it was a succession of grand viziers from the Köprülü family who ran the Empire in quasi-dynastic fashion, partially restoring a semblance of order which however collapsed yet again in the wake of an over-ambitious Vienna expedition. In the process, the court rules and procedures surrounding and representing sovereignty also disintegrated, depriving royal power of its heart, its pomp-and-circumstance embodiment. This article argues that more than a practical necessity, the protocol codes in question came to manifest a new political, diplomatic and moral agenda. In fact, what was at stake was nothing less than the re-invention, representation and re-conceptualization of the House of Osman.
Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Tülay Artan
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2022 21:00
Last Modified: 03 Sep 2022 21:00

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