This paper is on a massive inventory dated 1809 which discloses the assets of hundreds of notable people who lost their lives or fled the Ottoman Empire during the political turmoil between 1807 and 1808, known as the Révolutions de Constantinople in Europe during the time. These people were mainly part of a political-financial network, known as the New Order, which ruled the empire between 1790 and 1808. After the elimination of the network with a Janissary-led popular revolt, the assets of these men and women were seized. During this massive confiscation process, an inventory was prepared by fiscal experts with a particular accounting technique after painstaking investigation about the wealth and financial relations of these notables. The accountants inventoried values of their property, calculated debts and credits, designated debtors and creditors and uncovered the debt to the state (public debt). Ali Yaycioglu will discuss the integrated political and financial lives of the Ottoman elites, the processes of their elimination through economic violence and the economic and political institutions, which were in radical transformation in the age of revolutions, under the light of this remarkable document.
Ali Yaycioglu is an Associate Professor in Ottoman and Middle Eastern History at Stanford University. His research centers on economic, political and legal institutions and practices as well as social and cultural life in southeastern Europe and the Middle East during the Ottoman Empire. Professor Yaycioglu's first book, Partners of the Empire: Crisis of the Ottoman Order in the Age of Revolutions (Stanford University Press, 2016) offers a rethinking of the Ottoman Empire within the global context of the revolutionary age in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Currently Dr. Yaycioglu is working on a book project, entitled The Order of Debt: State, Wealth and Death in the Ottoman Empire analyzing transformations in property, finance and statehood in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
All welcome- this event is free to attend but booking is required.