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The Proper Order of ThingsLanguage, Power, and Law in Ottoman Administrative Discourses$
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Heather L. Ferguson

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781503603561

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9781503603561.001.0001

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The Sovereign State

The Sovereign State

Spatial and Textual Politics in Early Modern Eurasian Courts

(p.25) Chapter One The Sovereign State
The Proper Order of Things

Heather L. Ferguson

Stanford University Press

This chapter demonstrates that qualities once thought to be unique to the Ottoman confederation were of a piece with other imperial strategies to affirm the power of the court amid disparate territorial domains. The chapter builds a basis especially for thinking about the relationship between an expanding bureaucracy, a new set of spatial protocols within an established palatial seat, and the textual habits that extended authority outside the palace confines. It draws on comparisons with the Habsburg court in Spain, addresses the emergence of a hierarchical imperial chancery, and outlines features of the scribal culture that play a key role in the book as a whole. It draws on diverse chroniclers, early kanunname, imperial expenditures, and sultanic edicts in various forms to trace these dynamics between the fifteenth and the seventeenth centuries.

Keywords:   spatial practice, textual habitus, threshold architecture, Habsburg, Ottoman, commensurate empires, waqf, beylik, divan

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