Historical Anthropology of the Balkans and the Near East

Prof. Dr. Karl Kaser University of Graz

TABLE OF CONTENTS Unit 1) Introduction Unit 2) Power and Dominance Unit 3) Tributary and Interventionist Modes of Ruling Unit 4) Environment Unit 5) Migrations Unit 6) Pre-industrial Modes of Economy Unit 7) Late Industrialization Unit 8) City States, Cities, and Metropolises Unit 9) Demographic Developments Unit 10) Religions Unit 11) Religion and Society Unit 12) Body and Body Consciousness Introduction
Less than 12,000 years ago, the climate we are familiar with was established. A phase of global warming reduced the glaciers to their present extension. Already two thousand years before, Europe and Asia had successively become covered by woods. Hunters and gatherers step by step became sedentary. About 9,500 years ago in the Near East and about a millennium of years later in the Balkans, cultivatable soil was scratched in order to plant wild grain and multiply it. Among these oases of increasing human sedentariness in Asia was the area between the riverbeds of the Euphrates and the Tigris Rivers. The Greeks called it "Mesopotamia". In the millenniums to come, these technologies of food supply that were vital for the survival of an increasing number of human beings would spread out to the Balkan Peninsula and to the rest of Europe. Only scholars of the 20th century would call this area "Ancient Europe". The population density in that period was incredibly low but obviously, the sedentary people between the Danube and the Tigris Rivers started communicating. The population of Ancient Europe began to make use of the inventions of their fellows in Mesopotamia. They contributed new knowledge and distributed it to the human beings in the rest of Europe, who still practiced an economy based on hunting and gathering.


They also appreciated the advantages of a sedentary style of life. The people then certainly had no idea about their later attachment to the continents that would be called Europe and Asia. The basis of what a millennium of years later would be recognized as "typical" European was conceived between the Danube and Tigris Rivers. All these early achievements for the establishment of civilization in Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) – this is the term used for the region between Danube and Tigris in this book – have little value in the early 21st century. The cultural and economic advancement of the early period, caused by complex interactions and processes, had become laggards in many respects in present time. Why do New York, London, Paris, Djakarta, and Tokyo belong to the post-industrialized Mega-cities, and not Baghdad, Damascus, or Istanbul, where global cash flows unite and the most important globally acting trusts have their headquarters? The successors of those who invented the basic principles of power and dominance, obviously have not only lost their superior skills, but are now forced to learn the new rules of the game of the governing world order. This constitutes a painful experience. Today, only a few badly funded and didactically insufficient museums remind us of the unknown people who invented the script and the alphabet, domesticated the sheep, goat, cattle, and camel, and cultivated in numerous experiments both wild barley and wild emmer (→ emmer), which have become indispensable ingredients of our food chain. Unlike any other region in the world, Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) situated between the Tigris and the Danube Rivers, shares a joint history, if we define "joint history" as embeddedness in politically superior structures over long periods of time. This joint history began in the period of Hellenism (in the last third of the 4th century B.C.), continued with the establishment of the Roman and the Byzantine Empires, and ended with the fall of the Ottoman Empire in early 20th century. In the Hellenistic period, people still believed in many goddesses. In the time of the late Roman Empire, they experienced the transformation from polytheism to Christian-Jewish monotheism, which split into an eastern and a western variant in the Byzantine period. For more than half of a millennium, under Ottoman domination, Sunnitic (→ Sunnites) Islam and the Islamic Law (→ Sharia) constituted the basis of the state. A long chain of generations has shared a joint kismet, good and bad experiences, accumulated knowledge and let people become what they are at present. The commonality of a two thousand years' history is obvious, and we have to ask the significant question why this common history has not found its way into historiography as a whole but only periodically. Meaninglessness cannot be the reason. One of the reasons might have been that nobody felt in charge for taking over responsibility. As a professional historian of the Balkans, even the author of this book is not responsible to do so, per se. This leads us to the core of a problem. This irresponsibility has to do with the establishment, the profile, and the affirmation of the disciplines of history in the course of the 19 th and 20th centuries – especially of those that are defined territorially. They are usually called "area studies". The establishment of this kind of study was not only related to purely scholarly requirements but was also accompanied by linguistic, religious, and political interests. A discipline such as Orientalistics emerged on the one hand from Arabistics. As a history of an alien and seemingly hostile religious culture, it was not included into European studies. Even the history of the Ottoman and post-Ottoman Balkans was considered semi-oriental and only halfheartedly considered European history. To consider European history as a Latin-European and Christian one has a long tradition. The latter has been supported by the EU by extended funding and reduced Europe to an EU-region. Due to historical and future expansion of the EU, the European perspective will doubtlessly become larger. However, hostile debates about the non-Europeanness of Turkey in relevant EU-countries do not provide any indication for the extension of the concept of European history beyond the Bosporus. The establishment of area studies always had political implications as well. Universities and countries with defined foreign political and economic interests in certain areas have established area studies


in the fields of research and training, which usually include social and historical sciences, theological and linguistic studies. Sinology, Japanese Studies, American and English Studies are good examples. Around the middle of the 20th century, the Near and the Middle East on the one hand and Eastern and Southeast Europe on the other were designated as separate "problem regions" by western scholars. In the framework of the Cold War, Eastern and Southeast Europe were integrated into the "Eastern Block", which was hostile to the "Western Block" and vice versa, and, therefore, the "East" became difficult to access by the "West". The countries of the Near East and the Middle East had successfully stripped off their colonial bounds and in reaction might have looked for assistance by the Soviet Union – and partially received it. In the global context of the Cold War, the West was also eager not to lose its impact, primarily on the Islamic Near and Middle East. This constituted the background for the establishment of Near- and Middle East studies on the one hand and East and Southeast European Studies on the other hand, with different intensions and programs. They obviously were not related to each other and organized their separate scholarly conferences and journals. Whereas some concentrated on Arabic, Turkish, and Hebrew languages, others focused on Slavic languages, Hungarian, Romanian or Albanian. It was not only on the horizontal but also on the vertical-chronological level that the region was sliced into specific disciplines: the Ottomanists focus on the history and culture of the Ottoman part of the Islamic world, the Byzantinists exclusively incorporate research of the Byzantine period into their programs, and the Classic Ancient Studies incorporate the history and culture of the Greek-Roman period. The AncientOrientalists concentrate on the pre-classical cultures that stretched from Anatolia to Egypt. Therefore, certain epochs and the Bosporus are separate disciplines, which would be closely related, per se. The actual challenge therefore consists, superficially, quite simply in the utilization of the resources of the historical toolbox to fit certain puzzle pieces together from the different disciplines, in order to create a complete picture of the history of the Balkans and the Near East. But this is not as simple as it sounds – on the contrary. The challenge is enormous, and I have considered more than once keeping my hands off this endeavor. The above-mentioned and other not yet mentioned disciplines will not change their traditional profiles because scholarly research needs persistence and continuity. Cyclical fast-paced development of academic disciplines would result in journalistic superficiality. Introductions such as this one usually address students of existing academic fields. "The Balkans and the Near East: Introduction to a Shared History" targets fictive students of a non-existing academic field. Does this make sense? Probably not from a commercial point of view, but content-wise it does. The long history of the Balkans and the Near East is subdivided into almost uncountable fields of studies from the Ancient Orient to political sciences, from Religious Studies to Slavic and Arab Studies, from calligraphy to Turkish Studies. To achieve a training of high quality in all these fields is desirable. However, to access the narrower borders of one's field of specialization and to extend one's view to the neighboring ones can always be relevant and might be instructive. Therefore, this introduction addresses students of many disciplines. In addition, in case academic teachers had a look at it sometime or an interested non-academic audience discovered useful ideas in the text, the author would be really proud. Actually, the challenge consists not only in the meaningful composition of a joint picture out of puzzles but also in the crossing of a considerable period of time. Depending on the composition plan of each chapter and topic, this may stretch over nine or twelve millennia. In order not to overburden the text with too many details, the art of writing consists of catching long-term developments and, at the same time, not leaving safe ground. This procedure includes comparisons and the creation of models, which miss temporal and spatial nuances. Moreover, complex historical interactions and constellations have to be represented in a simplified manner without becoming trivial and meaningless. Finally, the art of historiography consists of not letting a distant past end in a less distant past but rather linking it to the present. To busy oneself with a seemingly closed past might be intellectually inspiring but our understanding is that of human beings shaped


by history and culture. Considered this way, history becomes a tool of reflective self-interpretation. But learning from the past is more difficult than proclaimed by humanists. The advantage of a broad spatially and chronologically developed historical representation has to be seen in the variety of topics that can be addressed and discussed. In this regard, an author has the opportunity to put their personal priorities into the foreground. The priorities of the author of this introduction are historical-anthropological topics. He respects the necessity to include a certain chronology of events in order to provide a broad framework for orientation, which usually is signaled by political history. This aim shall be achieved by two introductory chapters. The series of political events will be organized around the basic question of why the original concentration of political power and dominance in Mesopotamia and in the Balkans could not be kept upright and slowly migrated to the Mediterranean basin and finally to North, Northwest-Atlantic Europe, and North America, from the 11th to the 16th centuries. Due to complex long-term developments, the original center of political power was reduced to a peripheral status, dependent on new centers of power concentration. For many decades, the countries of the periphery – in the Islamic world not uncontested – have attempted to catch up with the center economically and politically but without visible success. This idea of a global shift of power and dominance – and completed by the differentiation between tributary and interventionist modes of ruling – will structure several of the chapters. One of the basic decisions related to a historiographic text consists in the selection of an appropriate structuring. Should the chronological order or the topic be in the foreground of discussion? The decision made by the author was to prefer a thematic structure. The advantage of such a writing strategy implies the opportunity to concentrate on certain long-term developments instead of splitting them into time periods. This fits into the tendency of modern curricula, which prefer concentration on long-term trends to cutting a story into the pieces of traditional West-oriented periodization of Antiquity – Middle Ages – Modern History (framed by pre-history and contemporary history). Although a broad variety of topics will be addressed, certain themes such as literature, music and architecture are neglected in order not to exceed a reasonable number of pages. The short bibliographical list invites for further reading in each of the thematic fields touched in this book. While the suggested material is not all too specific, it offers one further step into specialization, which has to be followed consistently by many additional steps. Most of the suggested reading originates mainly in Anglo-American academia, as it is generally the most successful community of scholars worldwide. This is related to the already mentioned global power relations, which are also reflected in academia. Books in Eurasia Minor's (→ Eurasia Minor) languages are not listed. This is not because of the author's ignorance but because of the conviction that the majority of readers will not be able to benefit from publications in specific languages. There is an obvious urgency to clarify the use of the terms "Balkans" and "Near East". These terms are problematic because of their almost arbitrary geographical extension as well as the images they provoke. They are no longer neutral and inculpable geographical terms, but augmented by essentialist constructions stretching from negative emphasis to exaggerated romanticism. Nevertheless, both terms are still useful in order to label the region from the Danube River in the West to the Tigris River in the East. Generally speaking, "Balkans" denominates the European parts and "Near East" the Asiatic territories of the former Ottoman Empire – at least in the German speaking world. In English, "Near East" already sounds rather awkward. Instead, "Middle East" is favored – whatever the term exactly means. It came into use in the early 20th century for a region stretching roughly between Arabia and India – with the Persian Gulf as its core region. In this time, many Europeans referred to the region as "Orient", understood as region that was both positively and negatively different from the "Occident". The region consisting of the Balkans and the Near East stretches from Bosnia-Herzegovina in the Northwest, to Iraq in the East, the Gulf countries on the Arabic Peninsula in the Southeast, and Egypt in the


Southwest. Eurasia Minor constituted a framework of intensive communication at least in the period from early history to the early 20th century. The turbulent post-Ottoman period – colonialism, post-colonialism, socialism, and the emerging EU – resulted in decisive new orientations. The Balkan countries as well as Turkey – interrupted by breaks – are characterized by a European orientation; the Arab countries, however, have been looking for cooperation among themselves – especially within the framework of the League of Arab States since 1945 – before the idea of an Arab national state had failed. Due to the strategic and economic position of the region in world politics, an effective cooperation is not easy. This region constitutes the rough geographical framework, which will be addressed in the chapters to come frequently without being slavishly confined to it. Currently, about 350 million people live on about 6 million km² in the Balkans and the Near East. Table 1: States of the Balkans and the Near East Inhabitants (2007) Albania Bahrain Bosnia-Herzegovina Bulgaria Cyprus Egypt Greece Iraq Israel Gaza West Bank Jordan Kosova Kuwait Lebanon Macedonia Montenegro Oman Qatar Romania Saudi-Arabia Serbia Syria Turkey United Arab Emirates Yemen 3,190,000 753,000 3,935,000 7,639,000 855,000 75,498,000 11,147,000 28,993,000 6,880,000 1,480,000 2,540,000 5,924,000 2,196,000 2,851,000 4,099,000 2,038,000 598,000 2,595,000 841,000 21,438,000 24,735,000 9,858,000 19,929,000 74,877,000 4,380,000 22,389,000 341,658,000 Area (km²) 28,748 665 51,129 110,960 9,250 1,001,450 131,940 437,072 20,770 360 5,860 92,300 10,887 17,820 10,400 25,333 14,026 212,460 11,437 237,500 2,149,690 77,474 185,180 780,580 83,600 527,970 6,234,861

Unit 2: Power and Dominance
"Power" and "dominance" are abstract sociological terms. Power means the sufficient concentration of means of coercion in one hand or a group of people, which enables the enforcement of one's or the group's will on others. Appropriate means of breaking one's resistance are, for instance, physical superiority, a predominant weapon, a stronger allegiance, a better equipped army, or the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force. In modern democratic states, the source of power is the people, which delegate it to legitimate representatives until cancelled. The modern state possesses the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force; it unites all instruments of power. Dominance is nothing else than institutionalized power: persons, groups, communities or parliaments are in the position to command without expecting serious resistance. But on the other hand, systems of dominance can also be overthrown, if the ruler loses his superior instruments of power.


However, from where and when did the concentration of power and establishment of dominance originate? What is the reason for the emergence of the concentration of power, once here and then there? There are no easy answers. The analysis of the origins of condensed centers of power leads us back to the time of multilayered transformation of hunting and gatherers' communities to combined agriculture and animal breeding. These processes started in the 10th/9th millennium at the earliest and resulted into early sedentary societies in the middle of the 8th century. This transformation process resulted in the first visible forms of power and dominance, as the cultivation of soil was related to (1) the claim of individual and collective ownership and the readiness to defend one's property, and to (2) the adaptation to the natural environment, resulting in a more complex social organization than the family group. The transformation to sedentarism began in several places and on various continents independently from each other and in specific ways. In general, this transformation of loose communities into pre-modern forms of domination rarely took place – it was an extraordinary event. There were only a few regions on the Eurasian continent where power was concentrated. They resulted in loose but identifiable arrangements of dominance, which are usually called "early civilizations" such as those of Sumer (→ Sumerians), Egypt, China, or India. On the basis of agriculture, simple-structure communities emerged first, but this does not automatically mean emerging dominance of the ones upon the others. This chapter is dedicated to the analysis of crucial, individual steps of the growing potentials of power and dominance. It starts with the emergence of early sedentary communities, followed by a glance on the first Mesopotamian city-states. This is succeeded by short analyses of early territorial dominions and the Assyrian Empire (→ Assyria). The Greek polis represents an important increase of power and dominance as well as the Roman and Byzantine Empires do, which are called integrated empires here. First Sedentary Communities Hunting and gathering communities of Mesopotamia probably did not know and need concentrations of power and dominance; it is assumed that their social composition was heterogeneous and that they chose their social relations deliberately. The population was organized in families and trans-family groups possibly consisting of several hundred persons. These units could not extend to more people, because of the impossibility of keeping communication upright. In the course of becoming settled, it is assumed that the family group continued, and larger units were formed in two ways: (1) by creating a village community and/or (2) by creating a loose network of descent groups (→ patrilineal descent group), possibly including several villages. Village communities or kinship networks – or a combination of both – were the organizational framework for denser social arrangements and an original division of labor. In this way, initial forms of authority emerged – a pre-stage of power concentration; this is not considered as a continuous and unilineal process of evolution. What follows is based on speculations and not on wide knowledge. The cultivation of soil needed permanent leadership; investments into the creation of storage rooms and fields, and the construction of dams and drainage systems as well as the organization of slash and burn-economy were unavoidable. Additionally, two important tendencies were crucial: population increase and an increase of economic-ecological specialization. As a result, initial military sources of power emerged. The higher the production of surplus, the more pronounced the desires of the less successful and therefore booty-seeking communities; the bigger the granaries, the greater the necessity of defending them against enemies' attacks instead of simply leaving the place. Where organized and territorially condensed social communities existed, the tendency of conflicts between them increased. Studies demonstrate that half the number of wars between simply structured communities were relatively sporadic, unorganized, ritualistic, and without bloodshed; while more complexly structured societies conducted well-organized and bloody wars. Weapons and the organization of wars were reflected by the dominant labor techniques: hunters threw


brickbats and arrows against the enemy; sedentary farmers swayed sharp-edged hoes; pastoralists were riding on horses and camels against the enemy. Military conflicts strengthened internal solidarity and intensified the feeling of belonging to a well-defined group. The emergence of military power, thus, intensified the differentiation between the "own" and the "other". The decisive point is that this development at a certain but indefinable point of time resulted in the institutionalization of power in the form of dominance: the leader became exchangeable but the function of leadership continued. This process of institutionalization of power was accompanied by the increase of power; the extension of functions of dominance in single cases intensified the arrangement of power in the form of territorial dominance. The Mesopotamian City-State The early state in its form of the city-state in Mesopotamia – the city's dominance over the agrarian communities in its vicinity – did not emerge before following pre-conditions were established: (1) There must have been a sufficient number of people living together, which made social and economic stratification unavoidable. It is assumed that only a population consisting of several thousand people could afford to maintain a certain quantity of unproductive specialists such as administrators, soldiers, priests, and tradesmen. The Mesopotamian city-state of Ur (→ Ur) for instance, covered an area of about 90 km² and counted approximately 6,000 inhabitants in the 28th/27th centuries BC. The administration of such a number of inhabitants needed a clear hierarchy, the top of which decided on questions of survival. (2) This community had to be able to control a certain area. Sooner or later, this area could become too small in order to provide for an increasing number of people. Conquests and commerce were means to improve the strained situation. (3) The agrarian production had to achieve a surplus in order to provide for the unproductive political, religious, or administrative leaders, craftsmen, traders, and slaves. Artificial irrigation of the alluvial soil of the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers, which provided for possible harvests higher than rainfall-based agriculture, originated in the centuries between about 5500 and 5000. The better and permanent harvests resulted in an increase of population density – from about 10 persons per km² (at about 3500) to 20 (at about 3200) and to 30 (at about 3000). The harvests significantly exceeded the amount necessary for survival. Therefore, an increasing number of people could devote themselves to crafts and commerce. The existence of a central authority managing the irrigation projects, in which hundreds and thousands of people were included, was a pre-condition. Territory, community, and hierarchy in the case of irrigation agriculture overlapped much stronger than in the cases of rainfall agriculture and husbandry. The cities of Sumer (→ Sumerians) in South Mesopotamia did not have more than about 1,000 to 20,000 inhabitants. The geographical radius of their zones of influence was presumably between 6 and 15 km. The most important cities of South Mesopotamia, Eridu (→ Eridu), Ur (→ Ur), Uruk (→ Uruk), and Larsa (→ Larsa) were situated within visibility. In the course of the 4th millennium, socioeconomic and administrative developments of Mesopotamia culminated in the emergence of several cities and a first citystate – Uruk (→ Uruk). At about the same time, the Balkanic Ancient Europe (→ Ancient Europe) witnessed its developmental peak. his oldest European culture, which had known writing for a long time and was socioeconomically differentiated, could not produce city-states and centers of dominance . In Uruk, South Mesopotamia, an "urban revolution" took place. The inhabitants of Uruk cohabitated in narrow space and carried out many non-agrarian professions. The families were no longer purely self-providers, but at least partially dependent on other peoples' labor and production. Production took place both in the city and its


surrounding. The city was the place where products from outside were collected, stored, and distributed anew. By the end of the 4th millennium, the Uruk territory was about one km² and in its vicinity, numerous settlements of secondary order were situated; therefore one can speak of a city-state. The city's population was provided from a surrounding territory that could be reached within one day. Uruk was situated on the fringes of the marshland of the Persian Gulf; the rich soil was irrigated by branches of the lower Euphrates River. Between the irrigated fields, there were pockets of steppe zones, where sheep and goats were kept and hunting was carried out. The marshland zone provided the people with fish and poultry. Differentiated production branches (fishermen, farmers, gardeners, and hunters) contributed to a rich variety of food. Pottery was already organized in mass production. Women were engaged in textile production, which was centrally organized. These specialists were no longer self-providers, which forced them to exchange goods, which was organized by city responsibles. The majority of the population remained bound to agriculture. At about 2700, the city extended remarkably – its area was already more than two km² and had a population of between 40,000 and 50,000 inhabitants. In order to supply this amount of population, the absolute control of the hinterland was a pre-condition. Cultivable land within a 14 km radius was under immediate city-control; a larger area however, was under indirect control. Cultivation of the fields and animal breeding was conducted by dependant laborers and not by the free city population. This intensified labor divisions between the city and its surrounding. The city became protected by a wall, and first kings are mentioned. Among them were Enmerkar of Uruk (→ Enmerkar of Uruk) and the famous Gilgamesh (→ Gilgamesh). Originally, they were elected as warlords by people's assemblies; and at a certain point of time, the office became hereditary. The kings considered themselves (and were considered by others) to be put in power by the city's patron god. In several cases, the kings were now also able to control the temple property, and their power was based on military and diplomatic capacities. First Territorial Dominions The final centuries of the 3rd millennium were characterized by succeeding periods of power concentration of two city-states: Accad (Accad) (24th/23rd centuries) in North Mesopotamia and Ur (→ Ur) (21st century) in South Mesopotamia. "Territorial dominion" is understood here as the unification of several city-states. Both dominions were based on military instruments. The archaeological and written sources of the early Sumeric period (→ Sumerians) do not yet indicate wars. No significant conflicts arose, and due to the low population density, the conduct of wars for the extension of fertile land was not yet necessary. The assumption is that potential aggressors from the desert in the West as well as from the Zagros Mountains (→ Zagros) in the east were logistically not yet able to conquer cities since neither the horse nor the camel were yet domesticated. A high level of social organization was necessary for central military planning and the conquest of other territories. At about 3000, the organizational and logistic threshold for the conduct of wars in Mesopotamia was transgressed. The raiding patrol came into the position to conquer the granary of the rival city, to keep it under control, and to force the subdued to deliver tributes on a permanent basis. The cities had to react with investments into defense – for instance the building of defense walls. One of the initial causes for warfare was the changing courses of river branches from time to time, providing one city-state with more water and the other with less. Where diplomacy failed, war was the answer. In the course of the 3rd millennium, war had an increasing impact on people's lives: both the division of labor and handicrafts and that in warfare increased. The remaining cuneiform-texts (→ cuneiform) increasingly mention the word for "battle", the selling of slaves (probably prisoners of war) as well as the substitution of the term for "priest" by the term for "warlord". After centuries of conflicts between the cities of


Sumer (→ Sumerians), the first successful, decisive conqueror termed himself "dominator of the world". This was Sargon of Accadia (2270–2215) (→ Sargon of Accadia), who had united most of the Near East (→ Accadia). His rule lasted half a century; in the course of this period, he conducted 34 wars. Sources mention an army consisting of about 50,000 soldiers under his command. The Accadians developed new siegetechniques, the blowing of breaches as well as the climbing of defense walls on scaling ladders. They were also able to conduct several-day-campaigns into the enemy's country. Assyrian Empire "Empire" is understood here as longer (several centuries) lasting territorial dominion. In contrast to an "integrated territorial empire", the instruments of power and domination are still weak. Since the 18 th century BC, the Assyrians (→ Assyria) marked a next step in the enlargement of military power. They continued with the domestication of the horse, which had begun in the course of the 4th millennium in the steppe, and made it familiar with the pulling of a two-wheeled cart. This technique revolutionized warfare and may explain the increased concentration of power. The invention of the chariot was one of the most remarkable events in the history of warfare. Within about three centuries, it was taken over by all relevant peoples of the Eurasian continent; for a while, the chariot-peoples dominated. In Anatolia, the chariot people of the Hittites (→ Hittites) controlled the original population of Anatolia. In the Balkans, the chariot was not yet introduced at that time; it was transferred to the European continent probably by the Mycenaean culture (→ Mycenae) around the middle of the 2nd millennium. The emerging social systems were probably similar everywhere. A basic differentiation was made between the temple population and the free citizens. The temple population was of dependent status and not allowed to own land. In this group, differentiation was significant: on the bottom of social hierarchy were the slaves who worked in agriculture, then craftsmen and finally the administrative personnel. Free men had to pay taxes and conduct labor services. They owned land, which in many cases was joint property. They were supported by the administration insofar as the centrally organized irrigation system was kept upright by it. The introduction of the chariot led to the emergence of a specialized stratum of warriors, which was related to the respective kings and emperors in a kind of vassal-status and this constituted a kind of feudal class that was provided with land. The new military technique based on horsepower had serious consequences and resulted in an intensive stratification of the societies of the Ancient and Medieval Period. The equipment of a warhorse as well as of a chariot warrior or cavalryman was expensive, which required certain economic privileges for the horse holder and warrior. Around the middle of the 8th century BC, Assyria (→ Assyria) became the decisive power of the Near East; and because of its long existence it can be called an empire. The Empire's name was coined by the Greeks ("Assyria") (→ Assyria). Its documents are written in an Accadian (→ Accadia) dialect, which was called Assyrian. Originally, Assur was only a city-state. The city was situated on the top of a hill at the Tigris River. It specialized in commerce with copper and tin from Anatolia; its commercial stations were 800 to 1,000 km apart. Contrary to many short-term territorial empires in the neighborhood, it existed for about seven centuries (1353-609) and transgressed the territorial framework of Mesopotamia significantly. Because of its stability, it enjoyed high tax revenues and a considerable commercial surplus. This constituted the basis for the creation of an efficient army, which was the pillar of the empire. Every man was part of the military machinery, even the civil servants. Assurbanipal (668-627) (→ Assurbanipal) was the Empire's last great king. He reigned for almost 40 years and was able to keep his Empire together. The Empire's budget was based on the permanent increase of tributes and territorial losses, which therefore must have had negative


consequences. The loss of Babylonia (→ Babylonia) (625) sealed the access to the economically important Persian Gulf and eventually caused the destruction of the Empire. Thus, in the marshland zone of Mesopotamia, the methods of power and dominance were pushed far ahead. The Assyrian Empire (→ Assyria) was able to advance this "art" in a way that the Greeks did not need marshland any longer in order to concentrate power. At the same time, we should not overemphasize the logistic of dominance of that time. The administrative structures of the early states were weak. Without the specific capacities of a ruler, the state could disappear rapidly. The conquerors were able to establish a garrison in a conquered city but were not able to control it directly. The governors were still chosen from the local elite, but were obliged to collect taxes for the conquerors. Related to the logistic of dominance, two future models should see the light of day: the Greek-Roman one with its highly developed skill of integration of defeated peoples and the Islamic-Arab one with its emphasis on tributes and only loose integration. These differences turned out to be significant in the world's history – and therefore, the text will point to this central issue again and again. The Greek Polis After the Near East, ancient Greece (→ ancient Greece) represents a further step in the advancement of power and dominance since about the 8th century BC. It introduced polis-democracy, which was limited to men, who inherited citizenship, and was beyond that a direct democracy compared to contemporary representative democracy. With the introduction of the Hellenistic-monarchic system (→ Hellenism) in the second half of the 4th century, the short history of ancient Greece's democratic rule ended. Departing from the medieval system of representation of nobility, the latter was invented anew in Western Europe and under specific circumstances. Greece was characterized by its intermediate position between Europe and the Near East and its extension to the entire Mediterranean world. Its islands and numerous colonies at Asia Minor's coast were designated to organize cultural exchange between the Mediterranean continents. This constituted a decisive difference to continental Mesopotamia. The Greek polis (→ polis) was a politically autonomous territorial unit, which was composed of a central place and its agrarian hinterland. Contrary to the Mesopotamian city-state, every male owner of land – irrespective of his status as an aristocrat or farmer – who was born on its territory was able to share freedom and citizenship: all landowners were citizens of equal rights. The citizen's commitment to the polis superseded his obligations to the family or to his descent group (→ patrilineal descent group). Territorial relations became more important than kinship loyalties. The emergence of the polis with its specific profile becomes only clear with regard to (1) Mediterranean commerce, (2) military organization, (3) capability of sea warfare, (4) script combined with commercialized agriculture. (1) Commerce was related to the polis' link to its colonies, which were able to provide them with goods (metals), which could not be produced or found within its own territory; almost no city-state was economically autonomous. They exchanged desired goods for their products. This was the basis of their commercial surplus and the precondition for their advancement and the success of some of the poleis (→ polis). Export and commercialization were dependent from each other. Prosperous landowners became internationally active traders. (2) The phalanx-organization of the hoplites (→ hoplites) as well as the script contributed essentially to the permanent success of the polis' democratic way of government. The main contribution of the phalanx consisted of the strengthening of the relationship between the citizen / farmer and his polis at an early stage (between 750 and 650). On the one hand, the phalanx was obliged to observe the common interests. The hoplite, on the other hand – irrespective of his status as an aristocrat, peasant or citizen – was at the mercy of the polis, since it guaranteed his political freedom. The chariot technology had favored an aristocratic


warrior stratum; the military organization of the hoplites favored egalitarian social structures, which, obviously, resulted in an increase of power potential. Beyond the usage of the chariot, the Greeks developed a widely copied fighting tactic, namely the phalanx (= role) of heavy-armed infantries. Improved methods in the field of metal processing by the end of the 8th century had favored this military advancement. The hoplites, named according to their round and inside-curved shields ("hoplon") were originally equipped with bronze leg-pads, an armor plate, a heavy bronze helmet, and the mentioned round shield in addition to a lance with an iron peak and a short sword. In the course of time, the equipment was reduced; in the war against the Persians (490 BC) the leg-pads were no longer used, the armor plate consisted of leather instead of metal, and the helmet was substituted by a leather cap. Therefore, infantry was able to run against the enemy. The Greeks developed a new strategy. The secret behind this strategy was the collective way of fighting, which needed a training of about three years. The shield functioned as a collective protection instrument in the sense of a closed bar. The shield protected the left side of the warrior and the right side of his neighbor to his left. This tactic required a high degree of trust between those who fought in the same line. (3) Democracy as form of government was introduced in Athens around 440 BC. Its participative character might have been better developed here than in other poleis, although women, slaves, and foreigners – the majority of the population – were excluded. Export went parallel to the commercialization of agriculture. The successful landowner became an internationally active tradesman. This deepened social stratification without harm to democracy. Athens as a sea power and democracy was insofar interrelated as the oarsmen were citizens exclusively and not slaves. The size of a city-state's war fleet was therefore dependent on the number of citizens. (4) Script and writing resulted in a strong integration of the poleis. Although they had diverse interests, a kind of Greek world emerged. This was not only due to the common language but also due to the writing and reading capability of numerous citizens. Thus, most of the citizens and their families (two thirds of the population) were involved in the process of spreading Greek culture. There are only a few continuities from Greek antiquity to the Middle Ages in Western Europe, but the accumulated knowledge and technique of power and dominance did not get lost. The Greek polis (→ polis) integrated its population in a unique way and developed a logistic of power, which was expressed by the combination of citizen, hoplite (→ hoplites) and democratic participation. The logistic of dominance was still very limited. The Greek polis was not yet able to combine democracy in the handling of internal affairs with the direct dominance over others' territories. The following section will analyze the power arrangements of two territorial empires, which in the forms of Romanization and Hellenization were capable of integrating conquered territories and their population and to establish dominance in a unique way, even though without observing democratic rules: the Roman and the Byzantine Empires. Integrated Territorial Empires The importance of the Roman Empire has to be seen in its unique imperial policy and its capacity of stabilizing dominance. The Empire on the basis of its legions and its politics of Romanization was able to institutionalize dominance for a longer period than any empire before. It turned from territorial dominance to an integrated territorial empire – a heritage the Byzantine Empire was able to continue with for almost one more millennium. The integrated territorial empire represents another step in the direction of consolidating power and dominance. The Roman Empire


The Roman principle of dominance achieved the highest degree of territorial control – compared to the general logistic limitations of agrarian societies. Its power was based on the capacity to integrate the elites of subdued peoples into the ruling Roman classes. Until the 3rd century BC, Roman society was characterized by a combination of descent and city-states structures, of equality among its citizens and social stratification; subjugated peoples were treated flexibly by making them allies or vassals. In the 3rd century the Empire's territory already consisted of about 100,000 km²; every citizen was obliged to military service. It established an administration on a written basis, conducted regularly censuses, elaborated a solid constitution as well as a codex of laws and founded coinage facilities. In the course of this century, Rome was still a provincial branch of the superior Mediterranean culture. A first decisive step into the Mediterranean was made after the conquest of the Phoenician-Punic city-state of Carthage (264-146) (→ Phoenicians), which locked the Mediterranean to prevent Roman access. After the establishment of a war fleet and the successful wars against Carthage, the Western Mediterranean was open, which provided the basis for Rome's expansion to Europe. Already in the 1 st century BC, Rome was the first territorial empire in world history, and at the beginning of the Christian calendar, it advanced to become the exclusive power in the Mediterranean, the empire of which could not only be kept together by military roads but also by rapid shipping lines. How could an empire, consisting of three million km² and about 70 million inhabitants keep its integrity for more than half a millennium? Why did it not split into city-states or principalities? Its most efficient strategies of dominance were (1) its legionbased economy, which territorialized and institutionalized dominance and (2) horizontal relations in the form of ideological integration (Romanization) of the subdued elites. (1) The legion-based economy constituted the central vehicle of Roman integration policy. The legions advanced only slowly; the infrastructure of conquered territories was developed bit by bit by fortifications and roads. The successful commander Gaius Marius (158/7-86) turned the originally heavy infantry into mixed units, consisting of warriors and pioneers. The legionaries carried spears, round shields, baskets, sows, spades, axes, belts, sickles and iron chains. This mixture of objects was fixed on a long pale, the "Marius-pale", which was carried like a lance. The Romans were the first militarily-based dominance, even though not based on violence exclusively but also on civil construction projects. The soldiers were not dependent on a sedate baggage but were equipped with everything they needed. On the advance, the legions constructed roads, canals, and fortifications and increased their efficiency by doing so. As soon as the conquered province was developed, the administration began to collect taxes, with the conscription of auxiliary troops, and later of legionaries. (2) The second pillar of the dominance system was its ideological integration by using the defeated local and regional elites for the exercise of power. Local rulers were allowed to keep their positions but were – especially in the western parts of the Empire – exposed to Romanization and integration. This was a consciously applied strategy. After a century or so of dominance, the former local culture was Romanized. Because of the strongly rooted Hellenistic tradition (→ Hellenism) in the eastern parts, the situation varied; Greek language was also used officially in these regions. Independent of Romanization or Hellenization – the elites of the East and the West did not differ significantly from each other. The emperors were recruited from all parts of the Empire – and each of them looked at the homogeneity of the Empire and not so much at advantages for his province of birth. The period of time from about 100 BC to 200 AD can be divided into two phases when we consider defense against outside enemies. In the first period until about 100 AD, the Empire had the character of a territorial dominance; it had no clear borders to its neighbors and no border fortresses. It seemed to be more advantageous to protect the borderlands through vassal states. The legions were stationed in mobile military camps, and only in the second phase, that of a territorial empire, they stood at the border. The more the internal situation was settled, the more the necessity to take care of the external border increased. Border


fortresses were constructed. They symbolize the beginning of a defensive attitude toward the external world. This resulted finally in the destruction of the Empire. Until the introduction of gunpowder and industrialized warfare, fortresses had played a central role in the defense against enemies. Attacks against fortresses had to be carried out from immediate vicinity. The climbing of walls supported by ladders and the construction of tunnels underneath the walls belonged to the usual tactics, but were rarely successful. This was also the case when stones driven by centrifugal machines were used. The main problem of the Roman Empire in relation to its protection capacity was the reliance on the Pax Romana. The borderline was heavily fortressed, but the internal cities remained unprotected. As soon as the "barbarians" broke the border walls, there were no longer any serious obstacles to reach the core of the Empire. Thus, it became their easy booty. It was only in the 3 rd century AD that the Romans began to fortress cities. Until the 5th century however, only 48 cities were fortressed. South of the Po River, only Rome was protected by walls. The Byzantine Empire After the destruction and extinction of the western half of the Roman Empire by external enemies in 476, the eastern half could be saved for another millennium. It was also destroyed by external forces in 1453, but because of different reasons. Also the long-term relationship between Western and Central Europe on the one hand and the Byzantine Empire on the other hand with regard to power increase and power decrease showed different or even opposing dynamics. Whereas in the West, competitive regional powers could finally establish an effective trans-regional power structure, the originally homogeneous and centralistic system of power of the Byzantine Empire became increasingly particularized. Considered from the point of power arrangement, the disintegration of its military, economic and political sources was responsible for this process since the 11th century. What remained more stable was the ideological (Orthodox) source of power. Contrary to Roman Catholicism, Orthodox Christianity was centered in the capital residence of the Emperor, which was one of various reasons for the Patriarchs (→ Patriarch of Constantinople) not being able to also carry the secular sword – on the contrary: the secular power controlled the spiritual one. As opposed to the medieval West, the Byzantine emperor was able to use the infrastructure of the Orthodox Church, which was weaker than the Catholic one, but still constituted an effective source of power. The Orthodox infrastructure transgressed the Byzantine territory by far and included large parts of the Balkans and Eastern Europe. The Byzantine emperors considered themselves as the legal heirs of the Roman Empire and at the same time as the backbone of Christianity vis-à-vis the chaos and disorder in the countries of the "barbaric" peoples. The ability of Christianity of integrating different peoples combined with Greek cultural hegemony was both considerable and flexible. This was especially demonstrated in the case of the Slavs, who in the 6th and 7th century began to settle on Byzantium's European territories. They were either Hellenized or integrated in their own language into Orthodox Church since the 9th century (see Chapter 13). The Byzantine Empire inherited from the Roman period an excellent administration and a solid army. In the 7th and 8th centuries, the state still had efficient access to its fiscal basis, the free peasantry. However, between the 9th and the 11th century, a new class of powerful great landowners emerged, which acted increasingly autonomously, both politically and economically. The state was not able to prohibit this initial process of feudalization (see Chapter 5). The increasing loss of power of the state also reduced its capacity to recruit an efficient army. The Empire was strategically not in a favorable situation. In the middle of the 7 th century, the first Arab fleet appeared in the Eastern Mediterranean. Therefore, the Empire had to invest considerable resources into the protection of its coasts and harbors and the improvement of its war fleet. Decreasing tax


revenues forced the administration to react with short-term measures. To exercise a long-term strategy, such as arresting the advancement of the Bulgarian Empire in the second half of the 7th century, was no longer possible. It happened only in phases, when the eastern and southern borders were safe, that the Empire could concentrate on the consolidation in the Balkans – for instance in the late 10 th and early 11th centuries, when the Bulgarian Empire was conquered and temporarily subdued. In the long run, expansion was no longer possible, but only the conservation of the status quo. Theory and practice of diplomacy were adapted into this overall aim. This is proven by "De administrando imperio" of Emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos (→ Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos) in the 10th century, which served as a kind of memorandum for the diplomatic service. He had ordered the collection of all available information about the Empire's enemies and allies in order to optimize their diplomatic treatment and the protection of the Empire. Permanently threatened from various sides, the preparation of defense was on the daily agenda. However, after having lost considerable territories to the Islamic world in the middle of the 7th century, the defense system widely collapsed in the middle of the 11th century, as result of the lost balance between diplomacy and defense capacities in Anatolia as well. This was caused by civil wars, armed rebellions in the provinces, and the disintegration of the army, the core of which still consisted of indigenous soldiers in 1071 (when a considerable part of Anatolia was lost to the Seljuqs (→ Seljuqs)). In the course of the 12 th century, the Empire ran into heavy diplomatic and internal turbulences: the Seljuqs in the East, new enemies on the Balkan frontier, and a strengthened aristocracy in the inlands, which demanded growing access to political and economic participation and questioned the power of the central authority in the provinces. The fragmentation of power and the increasing feudalization weakened the organizational capacity of the government – especially in military affairs. This basic problem could not be resolved until the last days of the Empire in 1453. The Byzantine central administration had lost its original interventionist and creative character and was forced to give away an ever growing amount of land to the demanding aristocracy, in order to keep a minimum administrative capacity upright. In this respect it became increasingly similar to the tributarily oriented modes of rule of Arab-Islamic empires, but without coming close to their military efficiency. From the emergence of early sedentary agricultural settlements in Mesopotamia and in the Balkans to the establishment of Rome as an integrated territorial empire, seven and a half millennia had passed – about four times more than from the birth of Jesus Christ until now. In the course of this long period of time, the logistics and methods of power and dominance could be developed further only slowly. This development was neither lineal nor teleological. Many Mesopotamian city-states disappeared without having developed territorial dominance such as in the case of Accad. Short-living territorial empires were not able to stabilize themselves. Although earliest writing had unfolded in Ancient Europe, it was only in the 8th century BC that the Greek polis (→ polis) started emerging. From the polis to the Roman integrated empire, no lineal evolution can be discovered. The increase of the potential of power and dominance – in retrospect – was seemingly spasmodic. New technologies, which could be used also for military purposes, as well as the refinement of techniques of domination and the improvement of communication, were responsible for this development. Once rolling, the stone of increasement of power and dominance kept accelerating. However, it began to move from its region of origin, Mesopotamia, to the North-Atlantic region. In the subsequent chapters, several of its causes will be analyzed – as there is no ultimate cause.

Unit 3: Tributary and Interventionist Modes of Ruling
For the rest of the book, the differentiation between "tributary" and "interventionist" systems is of high relevance. With "tributary systems", we characterize pre-state political formations, states as well as empires, the elites of which have a limited interest only in the alteration of the social relations of their subjects and


broad strata of society. In pre-historic times, practically all systems of dominance were tributary but their distribution was increasingly reduced in antiquity, the medieval-, and the modern period, due to the increasing means of power in the hand of the ruling class. In tributary systems, the elites were generally interested in the collection of tributes, taxes, and the recruitment of soldiers. The latter is important in regard to Islamic empires because they exempted non-Muslims from military service and compensated this with higher taxes. Not being obliged to conduct military service seems to be an advantage, but it confirmed the inequality of non-Muslim populations. However, the term "interventionist modes of dominance" refers to states and empires, the elites of which intended to intervene in existing social relations and already had the instruments of power in their hands to do so. Such interventions for instance could aim at improving the efficiency of tax-collecting or the substitution of orally transmitted customary laws by new and written law. As it seems, the Greek city-states and the Roman Empire constituted the first interventionist systems in European and Near Eastern History. Book religions are strong interventionist systems. They changed the lives of their believers. Most of the prestate political institutions before and many later empires were typical representatives of tributary systems such as the Islamic empires. Tributary systems did not develop institutions, which reached the mass of the population and functioned as means of intervention and command. This included the general administration as well as the juridical sphere, police power and religious politics and resulted in a vacuum, which enabled the population to continue with their traditional institutions on a customary basis. Tributary systems also used to lack efficient arbitration institutions, which were able to resolve conflicts. In institution-poor societies, individuals and groups were forced to carry out many of their conflicts without a judge and on the basis of customary laws. In the long term, such a constellation led to substantial alienation between the state and its citizens. If people over many generations are confronted with a kind of state that is only interested in collecting taxes and tributes, and are thus confronted with the negative side of a state exclusively, a feeling of trust can hardly arise, although the state might take efforts to show its better side. This situation still prevails in the present in several regions of the Balkans and the Near East, where people still tend to carry out conflicts without judges and courts as referees, including the traditional social institution of blood feud. Tributary systems usually generate "direct" social relations. Contrary to tributary systems, interventionist systems of domination used to create forms of "mediated" social relations, which are shaped by institutions in the form of administrations. In the case of an emerging conflict, the parties will not achieve resolution by themselves but file their case with the court. The court will figure out who is wrong or right and sentence the evildoer. Courts, of course, exist in tributary systems of dominance as well; however, the problem is that people or a considerable part of society does not have confidence in their capacity of fairness. This relates to general administration as well as to religious policy. From a historical perspective, the first examples of mediated social relations seem to be the Greek city-states and the Roman Empire. This chapter will tackle the strong tendency of Islamic empires towards the establishment of tributary systems, firstly. Secondly, the advancement of military logistics will be addressed, which supported the development of techniques of power and domination and were primarily used by the interventionist systems of Western and Central Europe. Finally, the causes of migration of concentration of power and domination from Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) to Western and Central Europe will be analyzed. Tributary Governance of Islamic Empires In the 7th century, a new form of power concentration emerged on the Arab Peninsula. The Prophet of Islam was not only successful in uniting the interest-split tribal society and settling its various conflicts, but also in


directing its military potential towards the external world. In the Near East and the Middle East, during the course of the 7th century and after, Islamic Empires were created and characterized by their rapid expansion. Nomadic warfare was based on the rapid horse and light equipment so that it was superior to what was at that time considered traditional warfare. The camel represented an additional advantage – in the Arab context the dromedary –, which was used both as a mount and a pack animal in arid and semiarid zones. In Islamic armies, they were used as pack- and battle animals. The importance of the dromedary is underlined by the fact that Islamic empires scarcely exceeded its geographic range. Nomadic forms of government were tributary. The subdued population was encouraged to continue with its traditional form of production, and customary laws were confirmed as long as they were not explicitly opposed to the Islamic Law. Nomadic domination did not intend the intensification of the lord-subjectrelationship. The tributary system was directed toward expansion – the more land under control the higher the number of subjects, tributes, and taxes. Arab Expansion The Arab-Islamic conquests were ideologically based (distribution of Islam) and economically motivated, as with the conquest of the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent), the inhabitants of the desert won important agricultural land that was not intended for cultivation by themselves but could be exposed to tributes. The religious war not only brought booty but also new sorts of non-Muslim inhabitants – farmers, workers, and slaves. They had to be integrated into the advancing Islamic society in some way. Interestingly enough, this was not done by enforcing Islam on them but in another, twofold way: legally, by leaving the land de facto to the former owners; and economically, by enforcing tributes on them. Nomadic communities were not interested in taking over labor-intensive land cultivation, but rather in the surplus of cultivation. They preferred to collect the surplus and not to change the property relations. They avoided the intensification of relations with the subdued populations. The new lords did not intervene in production but limited themselves to the collection and redistribution of tributes. This strategy should accompany the entire history of premodern Islamic empires until the 19th century and constituted one of the most important causes for losing their advance in the long run vis-à-vis Western Europe, which consisted in military expansion and economic dynamics (see Chapter 7). By contrast, Western Europe had to concentrate on the intensification and concentration of power, due to limited opportunities of expansion, before it began to expand to other continents. Seen from the geographical-political constellation of that time, the Arab-Islamic expansion headed toward the destruction of two empires in the region: the Byzantine Empire in the North and the Persian Empire of the Sassanids (→ Sassanids) with its center in Iran and Iraq. Approximately 640 AD, the Arab armies reached the Taurus Mountains, which separate the Syrian Desert from the Anatolian plateau; and in 635, Damascus came under Islamic rule. On August 20th, 636, the battle at the Yarmuk River, a tributary of the Jordan River, sealed the fate of Syria; Jerusalem was occupied in the same year; and in 642, the Egyptian territories were conquered, which opened the way toward North Africa. On the other side, the Sassanid Empire was subdued in 652, which paved the way toward Central Asia and Northern India. Two decades after Muhammad's death, a large part of the Middle East was already under Arab-Islamic dominance. In 674-678, Arab fleets attempted to conquer the Byzantine capital Constantinople every summer. The successful defense of the capital probably relied on the "Greek Fire" (→ Greek Fire). Since Constantinople could not be taken, the Arabs alternatively concentrated on North Africa in order to reach Western Europe. The conquest of North Africa was easy and resulted in the Islamization of the Berber tribes. Finally, Morocco and the Atlantic were reached, and in April 711, the Street of Gibraltar was crossed


and the conquest of the Iberian Peninsula was initiated, which had been under West Gothic domination. Cordoba became the capital of "al-Andalus" – Andalusia. Another direction of expansion was toward the Mediterranean itself. Here, the primary aim was not the control of traffic but booty. Between the late 8th and the early 11th centuries, the Islamic thread of the Christian sea voyage reached its peak, when the Arabs controlled a chain of Mediterranean islands from Cyprus to the Baleares as well as bases in South Italia and South France: Cyprus (655), the Baleares (9021229), Crete (824-961), and Sicily finally fell in 902 after having landed first in 652, and after the conquest of Palermo in 831. Ten thousands of Arabs, Berbers, and Spanish Muslims had settled on the island. In 1072, Palermo was reunited with Christianity by the Normans. Muhammad, the Prophet, commanded his troops himself in his lifetime. After his death in 632, the question of leadership remained unsolved. His first wife, Hadidsha, gave birth to two sons but they did not survive childhood. He remained childless with most of his following wives. Therefore, the question was, from the very beginning, who his legitimate successor (→ Caliph) would be. This issue separated the Shiite (→ Shiites) minority from the Sunnite (→ Sunnites) majority. The fifth Caliph, Muawiya (-680) made an important decision by choosing Damascus as his seat and adapting the city to this need. He also broke with the principle according to which a new Caliph was chosen after consultation with the most important religious dignitaries; he designated his son as his successor and called himself the "first of the Arab kings". His dynasty of the Umayyads (→ Umayyads) was able to keep the Caliphate in their rows until only 750. It was violently transferred to the new dynasty of the Abbasids (→ Abbasids) (750-1258), who declared Baghdad their seat. The Abbasid Caliphs (→ Caliph), however, successively lost their secular and spiritual authority in the Islamic world: spiritual leadership was lost to the Ulama (→ Ulama) already in the 9th century (see Chapter 11), and secular power was questioned by the Umayyads, who established an independent Emirate in Andalusia (756-1031) and a Caliphate of their own after they had been expelled from Damascus. Additional splits followed. The Buyids (→ Buyids) acknowledged the Caliphs as formal heads of the empire, respected them as heads of all Sunnites as well as their right to nominate religious dignitaries, and finally accepted the idea that the secular right of domination required the Caliph's approval. Although the Abbasids stayed in power until 1258, their Caliphs lost exclusive political authority, effective militarily and administrative power and could reserve only a certain impact on legal and religious affairs, since they were accepted as head of the religious establishment. They also kept an important moral authority and intervened not only once in secular rulers' secular politics. In addition, the Seljuqs (→ Seljuqs) emphasized the acknowledgement by the Caliphs and endowment with the protection of faith. Nevertheless, the division of power between the Seljuq sultans and the Caliphs remained undefined. Weak sultans made sultans strong and vice versa. Until now, this decentralized administrative and decision-making form is inherent to Islam. Therefore, it would be misleading to proceed from a homogeneous Islam. Since there is an absolute lack of generally accepted conclusions (in the sense of Christian councils), only the revelation remains as a source of religious discussion – similar to Judaism. Turkish Expansion There are astonishing parallels between the Arab conquests and the rapid advancement of trans-continental empires of the Turkish-Muslim tribal confederations. The migration of Turkish tribal confederations from Inner Asia and their victorious advancement into the area of the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) was one of the greatest and most sustainable events in the history of the Near East. After having joined the Islamic community in the second half of the 10th century, the Turks occupied in succeeding waves Persia, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Syria, which culminated in the foundation of the Seljuq Empire (→ Seljuqs). In


1055, Baghdad, the seat of the Caliphate (→ Caliph) was conquered, and the Abbasside Caliph acknowledged the Seljuq commander Toghril Beg (→ Toghril Beg) as secular protector of the Muslim territories. This affirmed a first union of an Arab Caliph with a Turkish sultan. Herewith, until the beginning of the 20th century, the leadership of Islam moved permanently from Arab into Turkish hands. In the battle of Mantzikert (Malazgirt) close to Lake Van, the new Sultan Alp Arslan (→ Alp Arslan) (1063-1072) defeated the Byzantine army disastrously and imprisoned its commander, the emperor, in 1071. The Byzantine Empire lost a considerable part of Anatolia and became open to Turkish immigration. In 1076, Damascus was annexed and Aleppo followed in 1085. By the end of the 11th century, the Seljuq Empire stretched from Anatolia to the borders of China. It constituted again a tributary mode of domination, and many of the dynasties remained in power after having submitted to the Sultan's suzerainty. The Mongol invasion (→ Mongols) of China, Central Asia, the Near East and Eastern Europe let the Seljuq Empire break away. However, starting in the middle of the 13th century at the Byzantine Anatolian borderland, the nucleus of a new Turkish empire under the leadership of the Ottoman dynasty came into being, which should include the Balkans and the Near East for half of a millennium or so. After the Ottomans had brought most of Asia Minor under their control, they began with their conquests in the Balkans in the middle of the 14th century. In 1389, their troops stood for the first time on the Kosovo polje (→ Kosovo polje) that belonged to the heartlands of medieval Serbia; in 1461 in Bosnia; the mighty fortress of Belgrade was taken in 1521, and in 1526, the biggest part of Hungary fell into their hands. In the late 15th century, suzerainty over the Romanian Principalities of Moldova and Walachia as well as the lands of the Krim-Tatars (→ Krim-Tatars) was established. With the conquest of parts of present-day Ukraine in 1676, they reached the peak of their expansion in Europe. In 1453, the Ottomans had conquered the capital of the Byzantine Empire, Constantinople. Parallel to their expansion into the Balkans, they brought the Near East and North Africa under control. This let the opposition of the already Shiite Persian Empire under the dynasty of the Safavids (→ Safavids) escalate. The conclusive battle of Chaldiran (→ Chaldiran) (1514) allowed the Ottomans to occupy East Anatolia and North Mesopotamia. More than one century later, the treaty of Qasr Shirin (1639) established the actual present-day border between Iran and Iraq. Baghdad and Iraq came under Ottoman control. In 1516/17, the Syrian-Egyptian Mamluk Empire (→ Mamluks) as well as the holy sites of Arabia, Mecca and Medina, were occupied. This opened the way to the Indian Ocean. The Ottoman Empire, alike its Islamic predecessors, was based on tributary principles. Continuously expanding for two centuries, the Ottoman elite like the Arab conquerors one millennium before, concentrated on the collection of tributes among the new subjects; the pre-Ottoman customary laws were confirmed as long as they did not oppose the Sharia (→ Sharia) and the Christian and Jewish communities were granted wide ranging autonomous rights. Similar to the preceding Nomadic conquerors, they reorganized the agrarian system according to military needs by protecting the peasants' property rights and funding parts of their expansion troops from peasants' tributes. As the Islamic empires did before, the Ottomans were also confronted with the problem of how to sustain an expansion-based system without expansion. In this respect, the Ottomans were better off than all their predecessors. They did not intend to penetrate the local and regional population by creative power diffusion. The non-Muslim populations, especially those in the Balkans but also in the Near East became practically parallel societies to the Muslim population. Neither Ottomanization nor Islamization of the population was intended. The expansion power of the Islamic empires was based on superior Nomadic warfare technique (based on the horse and the camel), not on a superior arrangement of power. The power was concentrated


in the hand of the sultans and the military leadership - reason enough to look at the changing logistics of warfare in the course of times. Logistics Of Warfare In Comparison Since antiquity, the logistic capacities in offensive warfare of armies remained almost unchanged until the introduction of gunpowder and the development of industrial warfare, as communication could hardly be improved. An important exception is the carrier pigeon. This form of communication is documented for Egypt since about 1300 BC. Such pigeons were and are able to cover a distance of 600-700 km per day and have a fantastic sense of orientation. Along the major military roads, stations for short and long distance pigeon traffic were established. An army in the time of Alexander the Great (356-323) (→ Alexander the Great) could supply itself only for three days without additional provision along the route. For longer campaigns before Alexander and after him, thousands of hand mills were taken along in order to mill the grain reserves. With his complete army consisting of 65,000 troops (including a baggage), Alexander advanced 24 km on average; a smaller unit could double that distance. Already the Egyptian army of Thutmosis III (1479-1425) (→ Thutmosis III) in the 15th century had advanced the same average distance; those of Ramses II (1279-1213) (→ Ramses II) 21 km. The Roman armies, due to better roads, advanced 23 to 32 km per day. Consequently, the maximum distance in three days was about 90 km. Without carrying water supply, the advancement could be tripled. Putting exceptions aside, ambitious campaigns on this logistic basis were impossible. Therefore, a frontal confrontation of two main armies was rare. In such cases, the army was split into smaller units, which advanced on separate routes and reunited at a given meeting point in order to enforce a quick decision, since the danger of demoralization caused by bad supply was too imminent. Referring to the military defensive capacity, beyond the question of the use of gun-powder, the differences between the Ottoman and the Habsburg systems in the early modern period were obvious. The Ottoman army made only slow progress in Balkan warfare. From the crossing of the Dardanelles in the middle of the 14th century to the establishment of a stable frontier with the Habsburg Empire in Croatia and Hungary in the second half of the 16th century, two centuries had passed. The defensive system of the Habsburg Empire was based on a combination of fortified cities and fortresses of the nobility. At that time, this system was inferior compared to the centralized war machinery of the Ottoman Empire. The Habsburg defensive system crumbled and many noblemen lost their lives in the frontier area. But the decentralized defense system of the Habsburgs also had advantages. In the second half of the 16 th century, the nobility of the embattled hinterland (Styria, Carinthia, and Carniola) decided to invest the biggest part of tax-income into defensive activities in Croatia. Hereby, the so called "Habsburg Military Border" in Croatia (→ Military Border) was established. It proved to be highly efficient and prevented the Ottoman army from occupying Central Europe. Noblemen's individual interests and imperial interests could be brought in line effectively in a state of emergency. The Ottoman Empire's centrally organized military was efficient as long as the Ottoman army progressed. As soon as it was exposed to defensive tasks, it ceased to be efficient. In the course of the Habsburgs' offensive after the failed Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683, the Habsburg troops were able to occupy Bosnia, Serbia, and Macedonia for a while. Had the Ottoman ally, France, not threatened Habsburg's western borders – which caused the withdrawal of the troops from the Balkans – the fate of the Ottoman Empire in Europe would have been decided long before the 19th and early 20th centuries. Pre-modern agrarian societies were not able to exceed certain limits of militarily based exercise of power; exceptions confirm the rule. These limits were set by crude military technique on the one hand, but


also by the weak overlap of ideological, political, military- and economic networks of power on the other hand. These observations on war logistics only apply for regular armies. The Nomadic armies from Inner Asia and Inner Arabia functioned in a completely different way. In certain aspects, they were subordinated to regular armies; in most of them, however, they were superior until the introduction of gunpowder, which triggered changes in warfare. Warfare Of Nomadic Communities The logistic limitations of regular armies could be easily exceeded by the mobile Nomadic riding peoples of the Eurasian steppe as well as the deserts, which is why their mode of warfare frightened sedentary peoples. Their warfare was based on the rapidity and maneuverability of the horse and the dromedary's persistency. They did not form battle fronts and did not attack without having secured their withdrawal. They usually built a crescent-like order when they attacked so that the enemy ran the risk of being encircled. The nomads avoided close combats until their victory was foreseeable. They used only light equipment and intimidated the enemy through salves of arrows shot from great distances. In doing so, they did not use the longbow, which was exclusively used by regular infantry but the reflex-bow, which was not bigger than the distance from the head to the hip. This technique enabled them to achieve high accuracy up to a distance of 250 m. The peak of the arrow was made of metal and could penetrate a warrior's shirt of mail from a distance of 90 m. Because of the low weight of the arrows, they could carry 50 pieces in a quiver with them, not to mention their capacity to let go of the reins of the horse and to distribute arrows in free gallop. The nomadic army of the Huns for instance, constituted a deadly threat to the usual logistics of European warfare around 500. Whereas the maneuver distance of conventional armies was limited, the "riding revolution" allowed for a gigantic mobility. The famous leader of the Huns, Attila (434-453), was able to change his strategic focus from Eastern France to Northern Italy – about 800 airline km – within short time. Another good example is the Mongols (→ Mongols). Never before in history were a single people able to conquer the size of territory the Mongols did. Between 1190 – the year in which Dshingis Khan (1206-1227) united the Mongol tribes – and 1258, when Baghdad was conquered, their armies crossed North China, Tibet, Central Asia, the Persian province of Chorasan, the Caucasus, Anatolia and the Old Russian principalities as well as North India. Between 1237 and 1241, they undertook raids through Poland, Hungary, Eastern Prussia, and Bohemia. Scouting patrols stood at the vicinity of Vienna and Venice. They subdivided their army into blocks of ten, one hundred, and one thousand (at its peak, the Mongol army consisted of 95 thousand-blocks), a system taken over by modern European armies: the regiment-battalioncompany. Nowhere is the Nomadic ethos better documented than in the Topkapi Saray (→ Topkapi Saray) in Istanbul, the seat of most of the Ottoman sultans. They used to wear the caftan (→ caftan) and the wide trousers of the riders, and had their rooms in periodically erected tents with many sofas and floors covered by carpets as if they were nomadic warriors. Their most important insignia were the quiver, the bow bag, and the thumb ring of the equipped archer (→ reflex-arch). However deeply related to the European world, the Ottomans had to find compromises between the traditional methods of nomadic warfare and the traditional warfare of the European powers (with heavy infantry and fortresses). They were able to unite the heritage of the steppe and the sedentary European heritage. For warfare in Europe, they organized the heavy Janissary infantry (→ Janissaries), while for warfare in Asia, they kept their traditional kind of nomadic riding warfare. Revolutionary War Technologies


The introduction of gunpowder revolutionized warfare; beyond that, it indirectly allowed for the establishment of a centralistic form of government of the modern state. At the beginning of the 14 th century, predecessors of simple canons already existed, which could only be used for siege purposes as they were not yet mobile. In 1444, the French King Karl VII (1403-1461) built up the first regular artillery-company, which became the model for other European armies. The Ottomans for instance used this immobile type of canon for the siege of Constantinople in 1453. A decisive step forward was again undertaken from French side. In 1494, the prototype of the mobile canon was tested. This was the basis of the canon-technique for the infantry of the centuries to come. Now, metal balls could be fired, which were heavier than stone balls; and their destructive capacity was three times higher. The traditional fortresses became meaningless because the high walls crumbled easily when a cannon ball broke the wall, and the enemy could enter the fortress. This resulted on the other hand in the improvement of fortress architecture, and for a while, the advance of artillery was neutralized. In the middle of the 15th century, the first hand-fire weapons were introduced into warfare. At the beginning of the 16th century, it became clear that a new way of warfare was under way, based on the combination of pike and missiles (shot from crossbow, longbow, and riffle) in open field battles, which became an effective strategy against cavalry. The missile of a musket (muzzle-loading gun) could penetrate the armament from a distance of 200 to 240 steps. The technology of fire weapons, the new tactics and strategies based upon them, as well as new forms of military and state organization were slowly realized from the middle of the 15th century to the middle of the 16th century. From this point of time, a modern army could only be organized by a large centralized state, on the one hand; on the other hand, it was the fire weapon that led to the consolidation and centralization of states. This implied a "selection procedure" among Western European states, which resulted in the survival of the most effectively centralized and bureaucratized territorial states. At the beginning of the 18th century, all proto-forms of technological innovations caused by the introduction of gunpowder already existed; all that followed were improvements. Important innovations, however, were made in the recruitment mechanism. In its wars around the middle of the 17th century, France had established the first standing army with an improved commanding structure. The accommodation of the soldiers in caserns became obligatory. Since the standing army proved to be a decisive instrument of the state's power politics, it was copied all over Europe. The European wars of the 18th century resulted in the neutralization of the Great Powers because they were technologically almost equal. Advantages could only be achieved by the enlargement of the armies. Better-populated countries became military superior to less populated countries. This was one of the reasons for the formerly superior Ottoman army to pass through a crisis in the course of the 18th century. The huge empire was settled only relatively loosely in this century. Therefore, its recruitment capacities were limited compared to those of the European Great Powers such as England, France, Austria, Prussia, and Russia. The non-Muslim population was not allowed to serve in the army. Until 1637, infantry was primarily recruited from slaves. However, it became clear that one couldn't win technology-based wars with slave units. Infantry, the heart piece of modern warfare, constituted the key problem of the Ottoman army. When the Janissary infantry (→ Janissaries) began to resist a complete reform, the Ottoman sultan saw no other way but to annihilate the Istanbul-based Janissary garrison in 1826 – a plan that had been envisioned already by his predecessors. West- And Central Europe – A Penetrating Interventionist Ruling System


After the destruction of the West Roman Empire and the establishment of Germanic empires in Western and Central Europe on the ideological basis of Western Christianity, a new political constellation could be established. In retrospect, the basics of the later developmental advantage were laid already in medieval age. The emergence of analyses of this unique constellation is based on the findings of the Viennese social historian and medievalist Michael Mitterauer, who has summarized his analysis in 12 theses, published in a volume edited by Robinson and Wiegandt called "Ursprünge der modernen Welt. Geschichte im wissenschaftlichen Vergleich": 1) Already in early medieval age, an agrarian revolution took place in the Northwest of the European continent, which, unlike the Islamic Agrarian Revolution, paved the way to Industrial Revolution on the basis of the water mill (see Chapter 6). This tendency is related to the different natural environments, which allowed for certain developments and prevented others, in both of the regions. A pre-condition for the operation of water mills is a certain flow velocity of rivers, which is not given, or at least, not during the entire year, in most parts of the Near East. The same is the case with forms of dominance, which were based on ship construction and navigation. The best suited material for ship construction was oak and cedar wood (the latter was only available in the Levant). The Phoenicians' dominance (→ Phoenicians) in trade in the Mediterranean would have not been possible without their access to cedar wood. Byzantine's strong position in trade in the Eastern Mediterranean would not have been possible without its access to oak woods in the Balkans and in Anatolia; the same holds true with Venetian dominance in the Adriatic Sea, which was based on the rich oak woods along the Adriatic coast (see Chapter 3). 2) In West and Central Europe, spiritual and secular power existed side by side and frequently contrary to each other, which led to the West European nation state as well as to trans-national communities. The separation of the spiritual and secular spheres of the West had its roots in medieval age, too. Based on a certain historic constellation, the Roman Church could unfold a highly centralized and bureaucratic organizational structure, which functioned internationally. This international structure was strengthened by its trans-nationally organized orders. Neither the Orthodox- nor the Islamic world was characterized by analogous organization. Orthodoxy always was subdued to the secular power. Its transnational forms of organization were never highly developed, and internationally based Orthodox orders have never existed. Also, Islam was no longer centrally organized since medieval times, when the spiritual scholars began to limit the competences of the Caliphs (→ Caliph) to organizational tasks starting in the 9th century. Finally, various Caliphates competed with each other. The Ottoman sultans re-united secular and spiritual power – they were sultans and Caliphs in one and the same person –, which for centuries led to an amalgamation of the spiritual and secular spheres. 3) Whereas the spiritual sphere in Latin Europe became highly centralized, the political sphere remained fragmented and de-centrally organized. Due to this fragmentation, a series of regional and local intermediate powers (noble and spiritual landlords and court lords, as well as autonomous cities) emerged, which paved the way to interventionist systems. A similar division of power did not emerge in the Islamic world; the ruling elites were always able to annihilate competitive social forces on the one hand, but kept up tributary modes of domination on the other hand. 4) Due to the interventionist character of the Latin Church, patrilineal kinship organization (→ patrilineal descent group) lost importance already in medieval times. Patrilineal loyalties were substituted by local communities. In addition, landlords re-organized family structures according to their economic interests. The respective household group was completed by non-kins. Individualization, mobility, and new forms of social organization started to spread. The Orthodox Church was interventionist to a much lower degree. In combination with the tributary Ottoman rule and late industrialization, the Church left patrilineal


descent groups and family conglomerations with considerable power until the 20th century. De-centralized Islam was lacking interventionist instruments to a large extent (see Chapters 10 and 11). 5) Regional and local powers of Western and Central Europe emerging in medieval times had to be included into financial and political decision-making by central authorities. Finally, this kind of participation resulted in parliamentary democracy. Islamic tradition, however, knows the instrument of counseling (shura) (→ shura) but also the tradition of despotic decision–making, so that political participation of social forces other than that of the ruling elites could not unfold. Decisions were and are widely taken in autocratic or despotic manner, especially in the Near East. Representative democracy is only weakly rooted. 6) Also European colonialism has medieval roots. Early predecessors were the Italian city-states of Venetia, Geneva, and Pisa. Since the 11th century, they forced the Byzantine Empire to open its markets and secured substantial advantages for their tradesmen. Commercial treaties established trade monopolies. Therefore, European colonialist structures have deep historical roots that could be extended relatively easily by North-Atlantic nations later on (see Chapter 17). 7) The already mentioned military revolution of the late medieval and early modern period became the military foundation of European colonialism. 8) Modern banking and finance, as well as European capitalism have medieval roots, too. Already early medieval Islamic empires provided the world with strong impulses in banking and finance, but they vanished in the course of time. In Northern Italy, an early centre of finance emerged. Its impulses were picked up and developed further especially in the Netherlands in the late medieval age; and it was here that the first bourses emerged. The interrelation of commerce and banking with industrial large-scale enterprises in the sectors of mining and textiles became particularly important. In the period of early capitalism, for instance, the Medici (→ Medici) in Florence or the Fugger (→ Fugger) in Augsburg established branches of their commercial and financial enterprises in many parts of Europe (see Chapter 7). 9) Printing by means of mobile letters released a revolution of media in Western and Central Europe. Mass communication created common levels of discourse and new forms of public dialogue, and it contributed to the establishment of societal pluralism and led to a homogenizing of local dialects. Therefore, book printing and other media of communication contributed significantly to the emergence of the nation state and democracy, based on political parties. In addition, printing fostered alphabetization and education (see Chapter 13). 10) Western Europe's de-centralized political structure constituted insofar an advantage as this area of tension released developmental dynamics, which probably would not have been released in the context of a strong center. Especially Northern and Middle Italy on the one hand and the Northwest of the continent on the other hand contributed to this development with their specific traditions and innovations. 11) Also the frequent recourses to historical cultures added to developmental dynamics. This holds true for instance for the recourse to the knowledge of antiquity or the protestants' reformation movement's recourse to early Christianity. In the Islamic world, the recourse of the Abbasid period to Hellenistic knowledge (→ Hellenism) released a period of cultural prosperity. Again and again, there were initiated religious movements of renaissance, which recoursed to original Islam; for instance in the case of Wahhabism (→ Wahhabism) on the Arabic Peninsula. However, this alone did not yet release developmental dynamics. This holds also true for the recourse on the Sharia as exclusive legal basis during the previous decades. 12) The increasingly independent existence of certain spheres of life released significant developmental dynamics in Western Europe as well and finally led to the early separation of Church from state, of university from state and Church, the separation of theology and philosophy, as well as those of ecclesiastical and public law. In the Islamic world, the separation of philosophy, law, or university from


ecclesiastical hegemony began considerably later and is generally not yet concluded (see Chapters 6 and 13). In summary, Western Europe in various aspects went specific ways and found different solutions to open questions than other cultures of the world, already in the medieval period. In total, the developmental dynamics thereby released were stronger than those of other regions and in the long run led to Western Europe's and North America's superiority in the world. In Western and Central Europe, these medieval foundations resulted in the modern bureaucratic state in the course of the 16th to the 18th centuries. Modern administration was interested in the separation of the public from the monarch's private domain. It incorporated the public in the truest sense of the word. An autonomous logic of the public interest began to win ground. This was expressed for instance by separating the office from the office holder, the function from the functionary, and the public from private interests. On the one hand, the monarch's private domain became institutionalized, objectified and made public. On the other hand, a working bureaucracy served the monarch's interests as well, as long as he or she was able to control it. Secularism, autonomous bureaucracy, tax-based state, industrialization, state budgets separated from the imperial privy purse, disciplined army, constitution and the separation of powers, inclusion of increasing parts of the population into political decision-making – these were and still are, exemplarily, the most important elements of the modern European state. Around 1800, the tributary Ottoman Empire was far from these kinds of development: it was characterized by close relationship of religion and state, inefficient and only weakly developed bureaucracy, indirect collection of taxes, hardly any traces of industrialization, a non-disciplined and outmoded army, neither constitution nor separation of power, but an autocratic government. In a critical analysis, the Ottoman governing elite of that time concluded that without taking over reform elements from Europe, and the Empire would be inferior to the European powers for the rest of its days. "Migrations" Of Power Structures – Center And Periphery The history of power concentration reached its first peak in Mesopotamia around 3000 BC. Its further advancement was in no way teleological; nevertheless, its history unfolded in certain directions. Departing in Mesopotamia, it "migrated" to Asia Minor and the Levant; from here, power concentration passed Mycenae (→ Mycenae) and Minoan (→ Minoans) culture with the latter's center being on Crete, as well as the Greek city-states and the Roman Empire, in order to be defined in a new and until then unknown way in Latin Europe. Separated from the Christian view of the world, the modern and interventionist state became the most efficient carrier of power concentration in hitherto world history. The history of power is characterized by developmental jumps; it did not proceed in a balanced- and geographically equally distributed manner. The shift of power concentration shows a westward-drift. Rulers in the West were not basically advantaged (in the sense of cultural superiority) to those in the South or in the East. The period of time since approximately the 11th century, although the dynamics fuelled by the SeljukOttoman expansionist centuries was considerable, constituted a phase of stagnation in the Islamic world – at least compared to the West with its emergence of the modern state. Unfortunately, no statistic evidence is at hand that could prove this hypothesis, but such a hypothesis is obvious. One of the most important causes was the technological advancement and the industrialization of the West – a path that was pursued by the Islamic world (including China and India) too, but only centuries later. At about 1500, the Near East still was a platform of world trade between the Eastern Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf as well as between the West (Western Europe) and the East (India and China).


The Near East was possibly even better developed than Europe until about 1500, but obviously the power and money concentration of Islamic empires in the hands of small, tributary-oriented Islamic elites had negative consequences in the long run. Non-Muslim yet economically very active segments of society were systematically kept from power. The Muslim elites, which monopolized the military-, political-, and ideological sources of power, suppressed the non-Muslim economic elites. Because of this societal hegemony, the Muslim elites' power was never severely questioned – neither by nobility, which could not emerge, nor by a potentially emerging commercial bourgeoisie, which could have demanded power-sharing. After the economic- and militarily sources of power had run dry, the Ottoman elite undertook desperate steps in order to revitalize them, but this all came too late. This was the most important internal cause for power not being able to unfold in all spheres. It was accompanied by an important external factor. Until the 11th century, the Near East had constituted a turntable of economic activities between the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. Around 1700 the latest, the commercial route from the Indian Ocean to Europe was directed via the Cape of Good Hope. Its commercial and financial institutions were superior or at least equivalent to others at that time, and were taken over even from the leading Italian city-states in the course of the 8th and 9th centuries. However, since the 11th century, this turntable moved first to the Italian commercial centers, and since the 16th century to the Atlantic powers (Spain and Portugal and later on the Netherlands, England, and France). Whereas the commercial and financial institutions of the Near East were hardly developed further between the 8th and 16th centuries, those of Western Europe were dynamically advanced and became the basis for its economic advance. Especially in England and the Netherlands, Atlantic trade let emerge a strong commercial bourgeoisie and capitalistic institutions. The difference in the standard of living between the Ottoman Empire and Western Europe became obvious. These differences in production and income were already given before the Great Plaque of 1348; and became even more pronounced in the early modern period. One can assume a relation of 1:2 compared to England and the Netherlands. Data suggest a dynamic advance of Western Europe and not a decline of the Near East and the Balkans. This is why the centers of power and dominance drifted to the North Atlantic region. An economic dynamic of center and periphery was the result and pushed the Ottoman Empire and the Islamic world in general to the periphery, which increasingly became dependent from the center.

Unit 4: Environment
The developmental capacities of pre-industrial agrarian communities were very much dependent on climate, environment, and raw material deposits. They prevent and enable population increase, limit and facilitate production, which is a pre-condition for the exchange of goods – especially of special cultures such as sugar cane, papyrus, cotton, and rice. Ecological conditions, which seemed to be ideal for manhood seven or nine thousand years ago, would not necessarily have to be the same at present. Woodland, which has been exposed to human exploitation, recovered again until a certain intensity of exploitation; but beyond this threshold, the formerly fruitful soil turned into desert. All indicators affirm the assumption that the ecological conditions of the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) enabled the emergence of the first human cultures; however, they also demonstrate certain limits of capacity. Thousands of years after the introduction of agriculture, it becomes clear that soils in Central and Western Europe as well as in the Balkans were more suitable for the production of goods than those of the Fertile Crescent. But also in respect of coal and iron ore resources and their exploitation, which became so important for the Industrial Revolution the Near East, but also the Balkans, became marginalized compared to a country such as England. This chapter starts with the analysis of possible reasons why people first in Mesopotamia and then in the Balkans began to domesticate animals, cultivate plants, and became sedentary. The following two


sections explore what woods, water, and deserts could offer and which the successfully cultivated fruits were. The subsequent section addresses the question why soils of the Near East exhausted already in early history. The chapter concludes with a short investigation of the limited natural resources of Eurasia Minor, which hampered industrial revolution. Sedentariness – Pioneers In World History The introduction of agriculture was an important step toward the political and military superiority of peoples over other peoples, provided that this was accompanied by additional innovations. It is still unclear what the decisive impetus for the transition from hunting and gathering economy to agriculture was. Was it the increasing population, which considerably reduced the stock of wild plants and animals? Or is the provocative thesis correct, according to which groups of hunters and gatherers began to cultivate wild grain in order to compete with beer supply on the occasion of meat feasts? Either way, there must have been incentives that gave reason to devoting oneself to the domestication of animals and the cultivation of plants.

Independently from each other, agricultural areas emerged: the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) (9000-5000), China (7000-5000), Central America, the South Andes, and the woodlands in the East of present-day USA (3000-2000). In the area of the Fertile Crescent, the first plants (emmer (→ emmer), einkorn (→ einkorn), lenses, and olives) were cultivated as early as 8500 and animals (sheep and goats since about 8000, pig and steer in the 8th millennium) were domesticated. Since about 7500, genuine agriculture accompanied by animal breeding, hunting and gathering existed. However, this process was initiated already much earlier. Since about 10500, the first agricultural settlements between Jarmo (→ Jarmo) in Iraq and Fajum (→ Fajum) in Egypt emerged. People lived in wooden houses erected on stone fundaments and seasonally used other camps as well, where they hunted gazelles. Their main food already consisted of wild grain. The Nile Valley and the Balkans were included into that development in about 6000. In Western and Central Europe, cultivated plants and domestic animals transferred from the Near East and the Balkans were introduced only between 6000 and 3500: in Central Europe, around 5400, and on the British Islands around 3500. Between sedentariness in the area of the Fertile Crescent and in the Balkans, there was a time distance of about one to two millennia. Therefore, we have to look at these two areas separately because the early settled Balkan people were already in the position to take advantage of discovering the Near East and its inventions. Due to the relative abundance of metals in the Balkans, people here were able to add new inventions. Which were the decisive advantages of the Fertile Crescent? Why were domestication, cultivation, and sedentariness stimulated first here and not, for instance, on the European continent? Three conditions may have been decisive: (1) It is situated in the Mediterranean climate zone with mild and humid winters and dry and hot summers. Its territory with fertile soil and little but reliable rain stretches in a bow from Israel over the Lebanon, Syria, South Turkey, and the fringes of the Zagros Mountains (→ Zagros) on the Iran-Iraq border region to the Persian Gulf. Here, plants that outlive the long dry period and then pullulate at first rain can easily survive. (2) Many predecessors of later culture plants were fertile even in their wild form. (3) The Near East is covered by a high portion of self-pollinating hermaphroditic wild plants, which offered favorable reproduction biology to the human being. Another advantage consisted in the periodical cross-pollination of self-pollinators, which resulted in new sorts. These cross-pollinations also included related kinds. Initial agriculture was activated by eight "founding plants": the three grain sorts einkorn (→ einkorn), emmer (→ emmer), and barley; the four legumes lens, pea, chickpea, and lentil, as well as the fiber plant


flax. In combination with the above-mentioned animal breeds, they covered all basic needs of the human being of carbohydrates, protein, fat, cloth, tractive power and means of transportation. Because of the eastwest-extension of the Eurasian continent, domesticated animals and plants could spread rapidly as an adaptation to various climate zones (such as in Africa or America) was hardly necessary. Since the results of cultivation were still not certain until the middle of the 8 th millennium, the emerging settlements needed to comprise a wide hinterland in order to provide for the possibility of collecting food in addition. This means that the single settlements had to be far away from each other. The establishment of permanent contacts was therefore rather improbable. The emergence of conflicts must have been rare. Around 7500, the first communities with full concentration on agriculture were established. Sedentariness had advantages and disadvantages. The great advantage was that a much higher proportion of people could be nourished. Disadvantages included the limitation of spectrum of food and its increased one-sidedness (high proportion of carbohydrate), the danger of crop failure and the increased amount of work involved (ploughing, threshing, mowing). Whatever motivated people to become sedentary, this process released decisive developments: ownership relations were introduced, communities became socioeconomically stratified, and a series of technical and mechanic inventions were the consequence. This transformation was, for instance accompanied by the invention of efficient storage technologies – the production of ceramic pots. The advantage of ceramic techniques was insofar important as previously only stone was worked on, which was hard to form. Clay could be molded endlessly, then burned and creatively shaped. Around 6500, bread wheat and flax production as well as the domesticated pig and cattle were already widely distributed. In this time, the highest concentrations of settlements were still in areas with high rainfall – in the higher altitudes of the Levant, South Anatolia, and in the Zagros Mountains (→ Zagros) as well as in North Mesopotamia. Here, the first large settlements such as Jericho (→ Jericho) and Chatal Huyuk (→ Chatal Huyuk) emerged. Between 7000 and 5500, the Mesopotamian climate was more suitable for the human being than today, due to more rainfall. Since then, temperature began to rise; caused by the melting of glaciers, the level of the Mediterranean Sea began to rise and reached the crest of the Bosporus Valley. On the other side of the valley, the Black Sea was still an isolated freshwater lake – 150 m beyond the entrance to the Bosporus Valley. Around 5500, the water of the Mediterranean Sea began to flood the Bosporus Valley, thus connecting to the Black Sea. Consequently, the level of the Black Sea began to rise significantly, and many settlements of the former lake had to be abandoned. Around this time, canal construction and irrigation techniques developed in South Mesopotamia, which was increasingly drying out. At the same time, the arid plains of Mesopotamia could remain settled, even without rainfall. Most of the villages were built along the Euphrates River, whose speed was slower than that of the Tigris River and therefore more favorable for irrigation agriculture. An important question is whether or not agriculture in the Balkans and in Europe developed independently from the Near East. We have to assume a complex interaction between indigenous peoples and colonists. The first settlements in the Balkans emerged between 6700 and 6500. They were situated in the Thessalian Plain in Northern Greece and were probably founded by migrants from Anatolia. These conglomerations were established close to rivers, lakes, and marshes. Their material culture and mode of economy seems to be influenced by Anatolia and the Near East. Recent research indicates that the European domestic cattle originated in the Near East. The aurochs, which has been considered as ancestor of the domestic cattle, seems to be replaced by cattle races from the Near East. Also sheep, goat, and the pig were imported from the Near East. The horse (domesticated in the 4th millennium north of the Black Sea) and the donkey (domesticated in the Eastern Mediterranean in the second half of the 3rd millennium) completed the family of the most important domestic animals.


The population of Thessaly increased rapidly. Around 6200-6000, 120 settlements existed already. After 6200, the first villages in the neighboring region of Macedonia must have been established. From here, people began to explore and settle the woodlands of the Balkans and the Carpathian Plain. In Northern Greece, the beginning of sedentariness seems to correlate with the onset of the climate prevailing at that time, dominated by the Atlantic with increased rainfall and moderate winters as well as cool summers. Vegetation began to change. In the lower Danube region, alder and oak trees as well as steppe vegetation was substituted by the denser vegetation of hazel, elm, and birch. Mediterranean plant species spread throughout the Pannonian Plain. Therefore, the Mediterranean system of agriculture could be transferred to the Middle Danube region. Pioneers finally reached the plain of the middle Danube north of present-day Belgrade, from where two settlement branches separated. One direction was toward today's Bulgaria/Romania and the other toward the Carpathian plain. Settlers crossed the Carpathian Mountains and established themselves on its eastern fringes. The settlers discovered gold, silver, and copper in the mountains; the oldest European copper mines were situated in Eastern Serbia (Rudna Glava) and Bulgaria (Ai Bunar) in the 5th millennium (a bit later also in Bosnia). From here, they expanded toward the northern coast of the Black Sea, where rainfall-based agriculture is possible. In the 4th millennium, Ancient Europe reached the peak of its economic productivity and population density; this culture that has been interpreted as gender equal, had elaborated a high proficiency in metal processing. The cemetery in the vicinity of Varna, situated on the west coast of the Black Sea (and founded around the middle of the 5th millennium) comprises graves richer than those of the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent). In just four graves, archaeologists found about two thousand gold objects. For the middle of the 4th millennium, a sudden increase of copper production has been registered. The Balkan blacksmiths had learned to process casts, which resisted the heat of melted copper and began to produce instruments and weapons from copper. Settlements specializing in mining emerged. The relatively many mineral resources differentiated the Ancient European culture from the Mesopotamian one. Mesopotamia was completely dependent on the import of metals (copper, tin, iron ore). The mining settlements in the Balkans, however, established commercial networks for their exports of metals. This could explain the early development of a script and their wealth, which is reflected by grave finds. The fall of this early Balkan culture should probably be seen in relation to a climate change around 3200/3100 with temperatures, which were lower than two millennia before. This provoked a crisis in the settlements along the lower Danube. Between 3200 and 2900, more than 600 settlements were dissolved. People changed their economic main activity to animal breeding. Only around 2760, the climate began to improve. However, culture had changed dramatically and lost its richness. The production of metal and ceramics decreased and mining in the copper mines ceased. Ancient European culture survived somewhat longer only in West Bulgaria and West Romania. At about the same time, groups of Nomads from the Ponto-Caspian steppe came into contact with the settlements along the lower Danube. Probably because of the climate change, they were in search of new winter pastures. They spoke an Indo-European language. The migration of the Indo-Europeans from the steppe toward Central Europe has to be considered a gradual process that implied the absorption of Ancient European culture by the riders' culture. At about 2000, some of these peoples from the steppe had reached the coasts of the Adriatic Sea and became known as Illyrians (→ Illyrians) and Greeks in historical documents. The pioneers of sedentarism in the Near East and the Balkans domesticated wild animals and crossed and reared wild plants as long as they made a sedentary life possible. They did not stop experimenting, invented the city and the script, observed the stars, and reasoned about their earthly


existence. However, not all of them could become sedentary. Wood, water, and desert were not evenly balanced, nor were the styles of life. Wood, Water, And Desert From the perspectives of sedentary and non-sedentary people, who had to adapt their labor and survival strategies to the environment, a distinction had to be made in Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor), between regions where sedentary life was possible and others where it was not. Woods and waters encouraged sedentarism, deserts and steppes nomadic forms of life. The relief of the Balkans as well as of Anatolia favored sedentarism, since both regions provide a highly diverse relief and are well watered. South of the Anatolian Taurus Mountains however, the Syrian Desert begins, which passes into the Arabian Desert and the Sahara. Here, only the water arteries of the Euphrates, the Tigris, and the Nile Rivers offer the opportunity for irrigation agriculture. The Mediterranean climate in the Balkans stretches to Macedonia and South Bulgaria. In the rest, continental climate dominates – with cold winters, hot summers and perennial rainfall, the heaviest ones in spring and summer. The most fertile ones are the black-earth soils of the Middle Danube Basin, but cultivable areas existed in the highlands as well, with a significantly more successful animal breeding. Therefore, various pasture systems were developed in past times. Already in the Roman era, pastoral economy was conducted in the valleys and plains. Peoples of the plains brought their animals to the mountains in the summer and the highlanders their herds to the plains in winter. Parallel to wheat and barley, since the 17th century, maize was cultivated far and wide, which was imported from the Columbian New World. It had become cultivated between 4000 and 3000 in Central America. It was probably brought to the Balkans through Egypt, where it has been cultivated since the 16th century AD; in Anatolia, its cultivation began also in the 17 th century. In the course of this century, maize substituted millet in Western Europe, since maize has a high proportion of starch. Harvest is eight to ten times higher than that of wheat and barley. The plant is especially adapted to the dry Mediterranean summers and even prospers in the limited period of growth in the mountains. In the Taurus Mountains, it prospers even at a sea level of about 1400 m. Therefore, maize had significant importance, especially for mountain populations – and resulted (in combination with the cultivation of potatoes) in an increase of the same. Potato cultivation came hand in hand with the use of maize. However, it could only be cultivated in the northern regions as field crop; the dry Mediterranean climate allows for planting under irrigated conditions. The Balkans and the Danube basin are covered by dense oak forests and were used for pig breeding and ship construction since antiquity. The woodlands also protected the fruitful loess soil from erosion for millennia. The rare evergreen oaks along the Anatolian coast were not suitable for pig breeding. Moreover, they were reduced by goat breeding over centuries. At the Black Sea coast, beech woods dominated. In Iraq, Syria, the Arab Peninsula and North Africa, woodland played an inferior role. Whereas in Roman times, the Anatolian river plains became deforested and erosion increased, the mountainous areas remained densely forested beyond antiquity. The exploitation of woods was not controlled in the Ottoman period. According to Islamic Law, woods belonged to the state and were allowed to be used unlimited. The last woodlands of Anatolia were almost eradicated in late Ottoman times. Due to nomadic economy, a rest of woods survived, since the Nomads left the interior for warmer zones during the winter season, and their population density was low. The Balkan Mountains were densely forested until about the 16th century. The majority of settlements of the Christian population in the Balkan valleys and plains were abandoned after the Great Plague in the middle of the 14th century and in the course of the Ottoman conquest, during the 14th to the 16th


century, and transferred to mountainous regions. Therefore, and caused by increasing animal breeding as well as increased wood requirement of Venetian shipping companies, woodland was sustainably reduced especially along the West-Adriatic coast, since oak trees after cedar were particularly suited for ship building. In the Balkan valleys, deforestation began only with the repopulation of the Pannonian plain and the plains in the Balkans since the second half of the 18th century. The villages of the Christian population in the Balkan valleys and plains were largely abandoned in the course of the Ottoman conquest from the 14 th to the 16th centuries and were substituted by villages in higher altitudes. In the second half of the 18th century, the resettlement process began. The loess crumb was more and more reduced by clearing and subsequent erosion. Sand and clay soils were left. Still in the first half of the 19 th century, two thirds of the Balkan Peninsula were covered by woods; at about 1870, this proportion was reduced to one third and around 1900, to one fifth. The causes for deforestation were manifold: uncontrolled fire, house construction, slakes of lime, the work of charburners, road construction, and drainage of wet areas that caused the lowering of the water level. Moreover, population increase and the increasing cultivation of maize, tobacco, and grain contributed as well. States and empires, which had taken the Balkan areas under control in the course of time until the modern era, never faced the problem of timber supply for ship construction. For instance, in the Byzantine period, there was always enough timber on hand for the maintenance of the maritime fleet. However, the Arab-Islamic caliphate (→ Caliph) had permanent difficulties with timber supply because of the scarce woods in the Near East. The hunt for timber was one of the reasons for attacking the Southwest Anatolian coast again and again; this was also one of the reasons for trying to conquer wood-rich Crete since the 820s. The biggest enemy of woodland in the coastal areas of the Adriatic Sea was Venetia. Its economic and political position in the Adriatic Sea, the Aegean, the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires depended on its seafaring capacity. The consequence of centuries of lasting exploitation of woods was that they finally could not recover any longer, and karst erosion expanded. On the Adriatic coast, this problem was worsened by the regular downslope winds, which develop incredible power and take everything that is not nailed down with them – including the soil of cleared woods. Due to climatic conditions, only somewhat more than ten percent of the Near eastern land-mass is cultivatable now; in former times, this percentage must have been significantly higher. Mesopotamia has semi-continental climate with hot and dry summers and mild winters. The average rainfall per year turned the North primarily into steppe and the South mainly into desert. Agriculture in South Mesopotamia (between Baghdad and the Persian Gulf) depended and still depends on irrigation from the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers. The plain they are crossing is rather flat. Within 500 km toward the interior, the plain slopes only 30 m. The region is divided into different geographical zones. The North constitutes a desert plateau, which allows for agriculture only in the river valleys. The Nile River flows more than 800 km through a narrow, fertile valley. Its marshlands are only a few km, often only several hundred m broad. In the course of the upper Nile, cultivatable areas are very limited; in the delta however, they are very fertile and based on inundations that allow for high population density. About 30,000 km² are cultivatable. This was probably the most fertile area of the Ancient Orient. In August, the river regularly exceeds its shores. The transported nutrients made additional fertilization dispensable. In contrast to the Euphrates, irrigation systems and inundation protection were not necessary. Canals and embankments supported the distribution of inundation water to the last corner. The settlement of the Nile Valley must have begun in about 6000. Since the 4th millennium, the Sahara, which had been formerly covered by dry grassland, became desert and the peasants were forced to migrate to the Nile Valley. The reasons of its dehydration are not yet clear. The most important drainage works along the Nile must have been conducted in about 1500 BC. Its surplus was deposed in state-run storages. But the irrigation system


of the Nile was also vulnerable. The water level of the river between 930 and 1470, for instance, was rather instable. In the year 967, about 600,000 people died of starvation – one quarter of the overall population – because the Nile withdrew too early. Present-day Israel consists of 62 percent, Jordan of 90 percent, and Egypt of 97 percent desert. The Arab-Syrian desert is only loosely populated and it is hit by higher evaporation than rainfall. The high daytime temperatures in the summertime only allow activities during the night – for instance the migration of animal herds – while daytime is used for recreation, and the body has to be permanently protected from the hot sun. Desert plants grow only in wadis (→ wadi), where they have to put down roots up to 30 m in order to find moist. The desert of considerable religious-historical importance, Sinai, is not a sand desert like the Sahara, but consists of a limestone surface, mixed with black flint and looks like a moon (lunar) landscape. In the desert zones of Arabia, Iraq, and Syria, nomads and camel breeding dominate. Although it can be passed on roads, the desert constitutes a natural barrier for human activities. Until the 11 th century AD, compared to agrarian sedentary culture, nomads had not played a decisive role. This change originated in ecologic alterations. As it will be pointed out later, the amount of cultivated areas already decreased in the 11th century. There are clear indications of abandoned villages, caused by progressive deforestation and subsequent erosion, salinization of land in irrigation areas, and the inappropriate usage of dams. Where former fertile soil and agriculture dominated, desert and semi-arid zones and subsequent nomadism spread out. Crossing the desert was avoided whenever possible. Therefore, for millennia, people had to cross the North Syrian steppe in order to reach the Persian Gulf from the Mediterranean. After the relatively late domestication of the camel – to be more precise, the single-humped dromedary – between about 1300 and 1000 BC and the consequent introduction of the camel-saddle (10th century BC), the desert could be crossed. Due to the lack of water, armies still had to use the above described detour. The Arab Peninsula is fertile only on its south-western and southern fringes and inhabited by sedentary population. Its agrarian zones in pre-Islamic and Islamic times were in the South West, namely in Yemen, the highland of which is characterized by regular rainfall. Terraces and irrigation systems allow for surplus production and the creation of extended villages. North of this highland, the region of Hejaz (→ Hejaz) with Mecca and Medina is situated where Islam originated. In oases such as Medina, date palms, barley, and vegetables flourish. The rest of the peninsula is semi-arid or arid and comprises only several settlements in oases and along caravan roads. The Bedouins were included in caravan trade heading to the Syrian coast. In antiquity, they conveyed spices from South Arabia and luxury products from India. For millennia, nomads of the deserts as well as of the mountains constituted a thread for political formations. Nomadic economy did not only rest upon the peaceful breeding of camels, sheep, goats, and commercial relations with markets in their areas of influence, but also upon predation and booty economy as soon as they were able to use horse, saddle, rein, was accumulated by the rulers in their capital cities. Another – mutual - problem was represented by the registration of Nomadic communities and their taxation. Pre-modern administrations with their limited power resources had significant problems with establishing security in remote mountain regions – especially in traditional periphery regions of empires and other political formations such as the Dinaric Mountains in the West Balkans, Southern Caucasus, or in the Eastern Taurus. Nomadic communities as well as sedentary people were confronted with the necessity of taking care of themselves. Therefore, the nomads created self-protection and self-defense units and used to be strongly militarily and men-oriented. This kind of descent units (→ patrilineal descent group) developed because the unifying kinship bonds guarantee considerable internal solidarity. Weak and tributarily oriented administrations thus had difficulties to get them under their control. Usually, their capacities were only strong enough to conclude contracts with them, in which suzerainty was acknowledged for a certain period of time.


Only the modern and comparatively powerful state administrations of the 19 th and 20th centuries were able to convince – and in many cases to force – them to acknowledge the advantages of a sedentary life. What Could Be Cultivated? Out of the great variety of wild plants which the pioneers of agriculture had at their disposal, only a few remained that were suitable as human food. Wheat and barley were the most important bread grains. Both have a long tradition of cultivation in the Near East and the Balkans. Barley, because of its ability to adapt to various climates, is suitable for a broader cultivation belt than wheat and has best results both on clay-marl soils and on loamy sand soils. Compared to wheat, barley needs only half as much rain. Wheat bread was therefore considered a luxury good. Barley was a food basis in South Mesopotamia since sedentarism; wheat and emmer (→ emmer) were significantly less important. Also in Palestine with its mountainous soils that were unsuitable for wheat cultivation, barley became the main grain. It prospers in the rainy mountains as well as in dry and hot zones. In Egypt, however, not barley but wheat became the dominant bread grain. The productivity (relation between seed and harvest) in pre-industrial times used to be between 1:5 and 1:7, in the Nil Valley it was even 1:10. It became the most important export product of the country and was overruled only by cotton in the 19th century. In the Ottoman Empire of the 16 th century, the cultivation of wheat and barley was quantitatively almost equal; barley was cheaper and therefore wheat had a better reputation. During the first half millennium of the Islamic world, numerous innovations in the fields of agrarian techniques and cultivated products were introduced. Among the latter were for instance sorghum (grain), Asiatic rice, hard wheat, sugar cane, cotton, oranges, lemons, bananas, coco palms, water melons, spinach, artichokes, eggplants, and mangos. Most of the new cultivated plants, if irrigated, prospered also as summer plants. Grain, however, remained a winter fruit. Rice cultivation began in China, India and Assam, Burma, and Thailand, and was soon distributed to South East Asia, the Philippines, and Indonesia. Documents mention it in Mesopotamia and the Jordan Valley in the 2nd century BC. In the Islamic period, rice was cultivated everywhere in regions with sufficient water supply; in inundation areas it could even become the main food. In the Balkans, rice cultivation became the most important Ottoman agrarian innovation. Originally, rice was cultivated only on state estates – since the end of the 15th century in the Maritza Valley and since the 1530s in the Sofia basin. Until the 18th century, it was widely distributed only within the framework of chiftlik economy (→ chiftlik); because of the high investment costs of rice cultivation, it was not suitable for small-scale farmsteads. The exact origins of sugar cane are unknown. Its earliest known cultivation took place in New Guinea. In Northwest India, it can be traced back to the arrival of the Arians in the 2 nd millennium BC. From here, it was gradually distributed to the West. In the 7 th century, it is documented for Persia and in the 10 th century in Mesopotamia and in the Levant – everywhere with sufficient water supply; it constituted an important commercial product. After the Levant had fallen into the hands of the Crusaders by the end of the 11th century, intensive sugar trade with Europe was established. After the fall of the Crusader states, Cyprus became the main exporter of sugar for Europe. This export product, however, lost value for the Near East after its cultivation began in the New World. Cotton originated probably in Northwest India. Archaeological excavations prove its earliest cultivation in the years around 2300. During the first Christian centuries, it spread out to the Middle East, but not yet to the Mediterranean. Cotton needs a warm climate and sufficient rainfall or irrigation; therefore it could be planted almost everywhere – except in the deserts – in the Islamic area, which was the case since the 10th century. From here, it reached Africa and the Mediterranean basin. At the end of the European


Middle Ages, it was cultivated in Eurasia almost universally below the 40th latitude. In the Ottoman period, it was mainly cultivated on the market-oriented chiftliks. Ottoman cotton reached the manufactures of France and England even before cotton from the New World. Ideal planting areas in the Balkans were the basins of Serres, Epirus, Macedonia, and Thrace as well as the Maritza Valley, the Kosovo polje, and the Albanian coastal zones. Early Exhaustion Of Resources The previous chapter articulated the difficulties in explaining why the relations between the Balkans and the Near East on the one hand and the West on the other became gradually reversed. At least since the 16 th century, the West continuously won superiority over the East. Among the internal reasons, the early exhaustion of the agrarian resources of the Near East has been frequently mentioned. The hypothesis has been articulated that the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) turned into an infertile zone at least partly. One of the main reasons was that since about 5000, the sea stopped increasing its level. Around 2500, today's climate and the stabilization of the sea level at its current level set in hand in hand in the region .This had catastrophic consequences for Mesopotamia; the canals became muddy runlets because the Euphrates remained by far underneath its previous level. The Persian Gulf withdrew to its current level. Considerable parts of it have become desert, semi-desert, steppe and heavily degraded erosion areas, which are no longer suitable for cultivation. In antiquity, major parts were presumably still covered by woods. Wide woodlands were cleared in order to gain agricultural areas; coastal strips became victims of the timber desire for ship construction. Because of the low rainfall quantities, the cleared areas could no longer recover. In the Ottoman era, dams and canals were obviously neglected. After the loss of wood and grass, erosion progressed; valleys silted up, and irrigation economy caused the salinization of soil. Today, only the fringes of the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers are still cultivable. The communities of the Near East had the disadvantage of living in an ecologically sensitive region. The extreme extension of cultivated areas by irrigation systems made the region even more vulnerable – for instance for disturbances caused by wars. The people of Northern and Western Europe with its frequent rainfalls, rapidly recovering vegetation, and deep soils were provided with much better ecological pre-conditions. Erosion became one of the biggest problems of agrarian production in the Near East. The aggradations of the lower reaches of the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers were possibly also caused by Arab conquest. In the areas of the upper reaches of the rivers strong rainfall – caused by over-herding – must have washed away valuable fertile soil. Erosion in the upper reaches caused aggregations of the lower reaches. Dams burst and alluvial mud was deposited along the lower reaches. In times of Ancient Orient, this process was stopped by the construction of terraces, which were about 90 cm high and supported by stone walls. In addition, dams along the river courses were constructed, which prohibited the wash-away of fertile soil. The conquering Arabs did not preserve this technique carefully enough and the art of cultivation was forgotten – especially in Syria and Palestine. The best examples are the "death cities" in North Syria. Here, on an area of 500,000 ha, where agriculture flourished and sufficient water resources were given in antiquity, only the stony remnants of the former cities remained. The area between the Syrian cities of Homs and Palmyra (→ Palmyra) – today desert – were covered by fertile areas in antiquity. Wheat was cultivated obviously everywhere in Syria, several provinces even exported wheat. The early end of terrace culture and the decrease of agriculture in Central Palestine are particularly obvious. An enormous amount of previously cultivated areas was lost; numerous villages disappeared and had to be moved to the fringes of the desert. Until the middle of the 10th century, North


Mesopotamia constituted the grain store for the neighboring countries. Especially South Mesopotamia was supported with wheat on the water roads of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers; this function got lost. In this context, there might have been a clear relation between politics and ecology. The increase of the Arab nomadic population might have been one of the reasons for progressive erosion, but could also have been its consequence. The period from the Arab conquests until the early time of the Abbasid dynasty (→ Abbasids) (from the middle of the 7th century until the 9th century) was obviously still a period of agricultural advancement, which is called "Islamic Agricultural Revolution" by many experts. The Revolution meant the introduction of new technologies, capital investment, the import of new plants from India and South East Asia (see above and Chapter 4), the increase of rice cultivation as well as the construction of new irrigation systems, completed by a significant population increase. Sugar cane and cotton needed artificial irrigation, and in the 9th and 10th centuries, the proportion of irrigated fields was still very high. Since the irrigation technique needed peasants with special knowledge in order to be kept upright, the Caliphs (→ Caliph) provided them with property stability. In Arabia and Syria, the semi-arid settlement border could even be pushed forward. In South Iraq, the salt marshes around Basra (→ Basra) were turned into arable land. In the course of the 9th century however, the above mentioned crises in agriculture became visible: erosion, neglect of terrace and irrigation systems especially in Syria and in the Hejaz (→ Hejaz) region. The desertification of cultivated regions of Syria and North Mesopotamia intensified after the 11th century. The political instability of the 12th century caused by the First Crusade and the Mongol attacks (→ Mongols) had particularly negative consequences for agriculture. In South Mesopotamia too, a rapid decrease of agriculture became visible after the late 9 th century. The main reason was the political chaos after the decrease of the caliphate's (→ Caliph) authority. Irrigation systems were destroyed and migration from the countryside began. The former level of productivity was not achieved again. The great era of Mesopotamia's agriculture was over. Coal And Oil The deposit of and the access to fossil energy carriers facilitated the Industrial Revolution in a form that was first carried out in England in the course of the 18th century on the one hand; but the limited access to this resource could decelerate the step into Industrial Revolution on the other hand. The energy carrier coal became the motor of the Industrial Revolution, which spread from the British Islands to Western and Central Europe. Instead of coal, another energy carrier might also have opened up the way to something similar like the Industrial Revolution, which paved the way from pre-modern to modern societies. However, a complex interrelation of economic, social and ecologic developments was a precondition for this decisive step forward, even though the deposit of coal was not sufficient. Due to its ecologic facilities, the Near East was basically excluded from this early progress, since the region has practically no coal deposits (only 0.05 percent of the worldwide deposits); only Turkey has noteworthy coal deposits at its disposal. The situation is similar in the Eastern Balkan region. Whereas Moldova has no coal deposits, countries such as Serbia or Romania only have access to low-grade brown coal. Only the countries of the Western Balkans and Bulgaria can rely on their coal deposits, which make them practically independent from imports. The occurrence of iron ore in Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) is comparably bad. Quantities are available in Anatolia, the Western and Central Balkans as well as in the Rodope-Cyclades' Massive, but the Ottoman Empire was dependent from imports. Therefore, the question of natural resources arises, regardless of whether or not the Ottoman Empire, with its socioeconomic development, could have gone parallel with England into Industrial Revolution..Obviously, these resources were not sufficient to open the way into Industrial Revolution for the


Empire as in England. Only when oil became the primary energy carrier – at least temporarily – in the second half of the 20th century, it began to substitute pollutive coal. This trend shifted the economic development potential towards the Arabic world and – as far as natural gas is concerned – towards Russia. The countries of the Western Balkans are 80 percent dependent from oil imports; the oil richest country in the Balkan, Romania, is more than 50 percent dependent. Bulgaria is completely dependent from gas imports; compared to about 45 percent in the countries of the Western Balkans. In conclusion, approximately at the turn of the first millennium A.D., an ecological catastrophe might have been taken place in the Near East, which obviously was caused by political and demographic issues. In the pre-industrial world, people's well-being depended on a well-functioning agriculture. The loss of cultivatable soils must have had negative consequences. To a large extent, the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) became infertile as a result of millennia of overuse. The ecological catastrophe cannot explain the reversal of the power relations between the East and West completely, but it was doubtless one among several reasons.

Unit 5: Migrations
People were and are always moving – deliberately or forced. Without migrations, the distribution of many techniques and inventions that accompanied the sedentarization of human communities wouldn't have happened. For the people living nine or ten thousand years ago, it must have been fascinating to discover how other communities, living in many days distance from each other and separated by dense woods, organized their lives, which gods they honored and how they managed their welfare. Maybe the origins of hospitality and enmity have to be found in these early communications. To take care of somebody from an alien community, who probably spoke another idiom must have been a fascinating experience. Such confrontations, however, could provoke emotions of enviousness and mistrust, if the others were in the position to exploit nature in a more efficient way and enjoyed a higher standard of living. Such simple meetings could quickly result in a bundle of motivations for changing the living space. While some settled permanently as community, the domestication of sheep, goat, cattle, and pig implied the seasonal migration of herds in order to take advantage of the different assets of nature. Others, however, discovered access to raw materials, which were not available to other communities and began to exchange them in return for goods. The wideness of the sea must have been particularly fascinating. With the first wars, flight, deportation, and displacement came into play – the violent aspects of migration. The wealth of the ones could motivate the poor to deprive them of their goods. Especially a region such as Mesopotamia, which does not own important natural resources, trading with obsidian (→ obsidian), copper, tin, or metal products became inevitable. Tradesmen as middlemen of products and messages, who kept networks upright over big distances, became one of the most important group among the various kinds of migrants. The history of power and domination is a history of migration, too. Hand in hand with the first wars went flight, abduction, and forced displacement. Climatic changes such as at the end of the 2 nd millennium BC could bring whole peoples to search for better living conditions and thus composed the population around the Mediterranean anew. The more complex societies and the denser the population of the world became, the more pluralistic the motives for migrations were. Migration is an enormously complex phenomenon, which cannot be discussed here comprehensively. We can differentiate its manifestations according to various categories. Thus, collective migration can be differentiated from individual or family migration. Collective migration describes the movement of whole peoples. In many cases, its motives remain unknown; intended occupation or changes of climate are again and again named as reasons. The category of individual (familial) migration, for instance, includes students' and academics' migration as well as the migration of tradesmen and merchants.


But also labor migration, which has gained an enormous extent since the 19 th century, belongs to this category. Another useful differentiation is that between voluntary and forced migration. The latter is a recurrent theme in history – starting with the biblical Egyptian captivity of the people of Israel over the forced Diaspora of the Jewish population after the first and second uprising against Roman domination in the first and second century (see Chapter 11), to the forced displacement of the Palestine Arabs after the foundation of Israel. Forced migration comprises also the enslavement of people. Another important category of voluntary migration is seasonal migration, which usually has economic reasons. This includes seasonal labor migration or the migration of herds and pastoral labor groups between summer and winter pastures (see Chapter 5). In this chapter, we will concentrate on two forms of migration: firstly, on the migration of peoples in the course of history in order to better understand the present ethnic structure of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) and secondly, on labor migration, which has become increasingly important in the last centuries. At first, let us discuss some basic thoughts about migration and transfer. Migrations And Transfer The search for the "last aborigines", hardly imaginable cultures, which are completely isolated and hermetically locked for thousands of years untouched by civilization, is seemingly never-ending. The few communities of the early period, which decided for a sedentary life and developed the necessary means and instruments, must have done that independently from each other, even though the enormous dynamic of inventions and their advancements is not comprehensible without the transfer of ideas from one community to the other and from the other to the third. This kind of "transfer achievements" must have taken a lot of time in the early period of sedentarism – centuries, if not millennia. Original distribution of messages was confined exclusively to human dimensions of crossing distances. Horse and camel speeded up the transfer. However, from their domestication and utilization to the construction of the first train lines and the invention of the Morse instrument in the course of the 19 th century, except for the domestication of the pigeon for the exchange of messages, there were no relevant innovations for millennia which would have fastened communication – except for sea transport, which linked Europe, Africa, North and South America as well as Asia with each other since the end of the 15th century AD. These kinds of transfer achievements were never neutral but always related to the mechanisms of power accumulation and dominance discussed in the first chapter. Knowledge only becomes meaningful if related to power and dominance. In the positive case, it could fall on fertile ground and stimulate modern sciences. In the negative case, knowledge served to subdue others. If the first two chapters dealt with migrations of power concentration and dominance, then analysis was confined to a phenomenological level. How do we have to imagine this transfer of knowledge in detail, which was decisive for the permanent increase of the logistic of power and dominance to higher levels? We will never dismantle these mechanisms. How exactly were the Greek poleis (→ polis) able to use the accumulated knowledge of the Near East for their specific aims and purposes and bring it to perfection, and how was the Roman Empire able to establish a territorial empire that was many thousand times larger than a Greek polis (→ polis) without adding specific innovations? Without migrations and the related transfer of knowledge, this couldn't have taken place. The people of the Etruscans, who originated in the "civilized" world of the East, are not wrongly considered to have transmitted knowledge to the Romans, which they were able to advance in a specific and ingenious way. The mechanisms of transfer from the Near East to the Greeks is even more comprehensible. They "studied" with their neighbors and took over what made sense to them. What is more, they processed and advanced this knowledge in a way that enabled Philipp II (382-336) and Alexander the Great (356-323) (→ Alexander


the Great) to conquer the Near East and the neighboring world all the way to the Indian Ganges River without apparent effort – after centuries of power concentration and irrespective of the question whether or not they were actually of Greek origin. Their expansion to the Mediterranean brought the Greeks into contact with the cultures of the Near East in the 8th century at the latest. The Near East from South Anatolia to the Egyptian border in the 1st millennium was a multi-cultural zone with peoples of different origin, different languages and religions, yet they were closely related to each other. In several coastal cities, Greeks were allowed to establish commercial settlements. It is therefore not astonishing that the contacts between the Near East and the emerging Greek world became intensive. The Greeks obviously took over architectural and sculptural styles, mathematical and astronomical knowledge, the Phoenician alphabet (→ Phoenicians) as well as their bronze-, silver- and ivory processing technologies, measuring units, termini technici, motifs in literature, and kinship ideals. Of course, it is hardly possible to prove such one-sided transfers but the probability is given. "Original Inhabitants": Sumerians, Indo-Europeans, And Semites Where are the origins of the present population of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor)? Questions of this kind have rather attracted imagination than the art of empirical evidence of historians. Fascinating as it might be to discover the "origins" – there are only identifiable ethnic origins in human history if we accept documents like the Old Testament as reliable sources. This way we could go back as far as Adam and Eve. Historians of early history rightfully do not distinguish early cultures according to ethnic categories but according to their technical capacities and ritual practices. They differentiate for instance urn grave-culture from string ceramic-culture. Only first written documents allow for categorization of sedentary cultures according to their languages. The majority of people in our region belong to the Indo-European, the Semitic (→ Semitic), and to the Turkic language families. The Sumerian population (→ Sumerians) cannot be included in this rough classification – they settled in Southern Mesopotamia. Usually, their language is counted among the ancient oriental languages. The big question is whether the Sumerian population was autochthonous and sedentary in the orifice area of the Persian Gulf "eternally" or did it immigrate from Africa or Asia. The latter assumption has been rejected since the Arabic Peninsula and North Africa were populated by the Afro-Asiatic group of Semitic language families (→ Semitic) – without any traces of Sumerian language in them. Little to nothing is known about the Asiatic languages in the 4th millennium. The Sumerian language is not related to present languages either. Consequently, nothing is known about the origins of the Sumerian population. Its own ancient historiography begins with the "Sumerian List of Kings" – also known as "History of the Own Kingdom". The earliest edition dates back to the 18th century BC and tries to link the mythic past of the country to the presence – in the form of succeeding royal dynasties. The legendary list begins in the city of Eridu (→ Eridu), when "the kingdom came down from heaven". Eridu was the southernmost city of Mesopotamia with a cultural tradition back to the 4th, maybe the 5th millennium. King Aja-lulim had allegedly reigned for 28,800 years. Obviously, this list is no useful document for serious historiography. The Accadian population (→ Accadia) of North Mesopotamia belongs to the earliest known Semitic speakers (→ Semitic) and was culturally strongly influenced by the Sumerian population (→ Sumerians). Also, the Babylonian and Assyrian language (→ Babylonia, → Assyria) belonged to the Semitic languages and are therefore related to Hebrew and Arabic. As mentioned in the first chapter, King Sargon of Accadia (2270-2215) (→ Sargon of Accadia) was founder of the first territorial empire in the Near East and in world history. Single Arabic-Semitic populations may have belonged also to the "original" population stratum. Climatic changes in the course of the 4 th millennium may have caused their immigration to the area of the


Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent). The Arabic Peninsula and the Sahara began to dry out. Constantly growing steppe and desert areas could not supply the increasing population. This may have caused periodic migrations. The first may have begun at about 5000. Since about 3800, the Sumerian (→ Sumerians) culture became successively semitized. In the 19th century, the first genuine Arabic speaking dynasty took over imperial duties, namely the Amorites of Babylonia (→ Amorites, → Babylonia) to which the famous lawgiver King Hammurabi (→ Hammurabi) (1728-1686) also belonged. The nomadic people of the Arameans (→ Aramaic) were among the immigrants from the Arab Peninsula to North Syria. Since the 2nd millennium, Arabic political formations emerged especially in the Syrian area. The most powerful of the period before the Islamic-Arabic conquest was the Kingdom of Palmyra (→ Palmyra) – at present an oasis amidst the Syrian desert –, which constituted the strongest power in the Near East, which stretched from Anatolia into Egypt in the middle of the 3 rd century AD. Under Roman and early Byzantine domination, the Arab immigration continued. Already in the 8th century BC, Assyrian sources (→ Assyria) mention "Arabs" and in the 5th century, Assyrian writers call North Mesopotamia the "land of the Arabs". Also Egypt, long before the Muslim conquest, comprised many people of Arab origin (especially in the east of the country). When the Arab conquest began in the 7th century, nomadic and semi-nomadic Arab tribes were already present. Many Arabs, who had converted to Christianity before the Arab conquest, fled to the Byzantine Empire. The immigration of Indo-European language groups from the North Caspian steppe toward Central Europe on the one hand and to Anatolia on the other hand has to be considered as a gradual process, in the course of which they absorbed the pre-existing Ancient European culture (→ Ancient Europe). This IndoEuropean pastoral and nomad culture presumably originated north of the Caspian Sea. In the course of their migration toward the West, they established a new centre in the Dnieper-Dnjestr area and then, in the 3 rd millennium again, a new one at the low Danube. From here, they expanded to the Balkans and the Pannonian Plain, where they arrived in the middle of the 3 rd millennium. This penetration process took about half a millennium or more; finally, several of these steppe-peoples reached the Adriatic coast. Among them were Illyrians and Greeks, and possibly also Hittites (→ Hittites). In the course of the 19th century, the Hittites migrated either from the Balkans or from the Caucasus to Anatolia and established, presumably because of strategic considerations, the Ancient Assyrian (→ Assyria) commercial seat Hattusha (→ Hattusha) as the capital of their empire in the 2nd century. The Hittite (→ Hittites) language is known through the Accadic cuneiform writing (→ Accadia, → cuneiform). The Hittite Empire controlled the Upper Euphrates as commercial route and the coastal cities of the Levant such as Ugarit (→ Ugarit) and Byblos. Around 1200, the Empire approached its end. Since the days of the Hittites, the Taurus Mountains have roughly constituted a transition zone between Semite language (→ Semitic) and Indo-European groups south of the mountain range, and since the 11th century AD., Turkish language groups north of it. This division still exists: about 70 million Turks are living on the Turkish territory north of the Taurus and about 200 million Arabs south of the Taurus. Embedded in this transitional zone are IndoEuropean Kurdish language groups, whose area of distribution is South Eastern Turkey, Northern Syria and Iraq, as well as North Western Iran (see Chapter 16). The distribution of the Indo-European language groups can be identified already in the second millennium BC: the Illyrians (→ Illyrians) occupied the West of the Balkan Peninsula, the Thracians the East, and the (pre-Greek) Dorians (→ Dorians) and Achaeans (→ Achaeans) the South. The already mentioned Hittites (→ Hittites) settled in Anatolia. While there are no more linguistic or ethnic traces of the Hittites, the case of the Greeks, Illyrians and Thracians is different. The present Greek population considers itself direct descendents of the "ancient" Greeks, who are known from historical textbooks. This kind of biological descent-theories are more than problematic. Already in the 19th century, the Munich-based historian Jacob


Philipp Fallmerayer (1790-1861) discussed this approach by questioning Greek biologic continuity seriously and provocatively. The Greek population occupied the Aegean islands, the Western coast of Asia Minor, the Black Sea region, as well as many coastal strips of the Mediterranean. As the allegedly oldest ethnic group of the region, it can look back on a comparatively long cultural tradition. Since the 2nd century BC, the Greek world had been gradually incorporated in the Roman Empire. While its western half got lost to Germanic populations (476 AD), the Greek-dominated eastern half in the framework of the Byzantine Empire existed for another millennium before it was integrated into the Ottoman Empire in 1453. The Greek struggle for independence from the Ottoman Empire since 1821 ended with the establishment of a small independent kingdom in 1830, which could extend its territory until 1947, to its present size. The Albanian population too, considers itself one of the oldest nations in the Balkans. This, however, needs the acknowledgement of a continuity of the Illyrians (→ Illyrians) to the Albanians. The western areas of the Balkan Peninsula, including the present Albanian territories, were occupied by the Illyrians since around the beginning of the 2nd millennium. Since 228 BC, the Illyrian tribes came under successive Roman dominance. In 168, the coastal strip of Illyria was turned into a Roman province; the interior however could be incorporated only under the Roman emperor Augustus (27 BC-14 AD). After its incorporation, a portion of Illyrian population became Romanized. This is crucial for the representatives of the Illyrian-Albanian continuity theory: Illyrian population did not become completely Romanized, especially the population in the mountains and in the countryside. The problem is the lack of written evidence for the existence of an Albanian population for a long period of time. The only exception is a note by the Greek geographer Ptolemaios (→ Ptolemaios) (2nd century AD), which mentions "Albanoi" people and a city "Albanopolis". Only since the 11th century, the existence of an Albanian population is proven by Byzantine sources. Integrated into the Ottoman Empire at the beginning of the 15th century, the Albanians were the last Balkan people, which separated from the Ottoman Empire in the course of the First Balkan War (1912) and received an independent state from the European Great Powers in 1913. The eastern areas of the Balkan Peninsula were settled by a Thracian tribal confederation. A Dacian tribal principality emerged out of it, which developed independently from the rest. It stretched between the Danube and Tisza Rivers, the Carpathian Mountains and the Dnjestr River – a territory that overlaps with present Romania. The Romanians consider themselves the true descents of the ancient Dacian population. In 105, it became a Roman province, which had to be given up in the years between 271 and 275. This short period of Roman domination contributed essentially to its Romanization. Latin became the vernacular in the cities as well as in the countryside. Romanian language belongs to the Balkan-Roman languages, which is a derivate of ancient Latin. Migration Of The "Sea" And "Rider Peoples" The next ethnic revolution, which concerned mainly the Near East as a migration target, was the so called migration of the "sea peoples", which was most intensive around 1200 BC. Generally speaking, the ethnic re-arrangement lasted from about the 13th to the 9th century. Among its protagonists were also peoples from the Balkan and Danube hinterland. The exact reasons of the population shifts are still unknown. The term "sea peoples" is problematic because migrations took place on land as well. This population shift might have been related to a global change to a cooler and wetter climate, which began at the end of the 2nd millennium. Between about 1200 and 1000, rainfall increased in Central Europe and so did the Scandinavian glaciers. The plains of West and Central Asia were exposed to a cooler and dryer phase. These climatic developments began around 1200 and reached their peak around 1100. Conditions of living remained stable in the Near East.


It is taken for granted that several of these "sea peoples" originated from the European continent. Where exactly they came from, is still a mystery. It was a large-style migration of peoples, which included also the "Dorian migration" (→ Dorians). This people migrated to the Greek territory from the North and destroyed the Mycenaean culture (→ Mycenae). On their way to Asia Minor, Cyprus was conquered. Troy was destroyed by them, which caused the legendary odyssey. In addition, they destroyed the Hittite Empire (→ Hittites), Ugarit (→ Ugarit) and other harbors in the Levant. The Minoan culture (→ Minoans) on Crete ended; its population was absorbed by the invaders. The Egyptians survived two major attacks of "sea peoples" but could not prevent the ethnic decomposition of Syria. Alike the Hittites, they lost political importance. Also the conquest of the "promised land" by the Semitic Israelites (→ Semitic), who were called Hebrews in early times, took place in these stormy centuries. Their origins are uncertain. Besides their own writings, no written evidence exists until the 9th century. According to the Old Testament, they had been forced into Egyptian control. The people composed of twelve tribes was then guided out of Egypt by Moses, crossed the Sinai desert and migrated 40 years until they found their new homeland in Canaan (→ Canaan), today's Palestine. This was probably made possible by displacements caused by the migration of the "sea peoples". Among their earliest enemies were the Philistines (→ Philistines) – also a sea people, which had occupied the South-Western coast of Canaan. They presumably originated from continental Greece or the Aegean islands, conquered the coastal cities of Canaan and established themselves as the dominating commercial power in the region. The term Palestine (gr. Philistaea; lat. Palaestina) was derived from them. The Israelic tribes united in defense and elected Saul (1020-1006) as their king and commander. Only his successor David (1006-965) was able to push the Philistines back, to conquer Jerusalem, and to make it their capital city. After the death of his successor on the thrown Salomon (965-928), the kingdom was separated into two parts: the ten northern tribes constituted the Kingdom of Israel, the two southern tribes the Kingdom of Judah. The people were called "Jehudi" (Jews) in Hebrew. Both kingdoms coexisted for two centuries until in 732, the Assyrians (→ Assyria) annexed the northern kingdom and annihilated it. Judah continued as tributary state of Assyria until it was subdued by the Babylonian Kingdom (→ Babylonia). Between 597 and 587, according to the "Book of the Kings" (→ Book of the Kings) 10,000 Jews were forced to migrate to Babylon. In the course of the "Babylonian Exile", the Jewish scripts were compiled into a book. The next overthrow was caused by the "riding peoples" from the South Russian steppe, which attacked the population of the Pannonian Plain and the Balkans. Among them were the already mentioned Thracians. Their territory stretched to the Eastern Alps on the one side and Eastern Anatolia on the other side. The Etruscans, an Asian people of unknown origin, however, migrated from Anatolia to the Apennine Peninsula. More peoples appeared in the region; among them the Phrygians (→ Phrygians) in Central and Eastern Anatolia. They came from the Balkans. In addition, the above mentioned Arameans (→ Aramaic) immigrated. This nomadic people extended from North Syria to most parts of the Near East. In the 9 th century, they began to attack Babylonia (→ Babylonia). They were supported by the Chaldeans, who presumably originated in the Persian Gulf area. In the course of time, they took over the Aramean language. This language was insofar of great relevance as God's son, Jesus, preached in this language and not in already died-out Hebrew. Consequences of these massive migration movements were population decrease, decrease of urbanity, and a high level of destruction. Sedentary populations turned to nomads. The system of palace economy, which had been working for millennia (see Chapter 5) was destroyed to a large extent. The palaces functioned as the motor of many technological innovations. Even where the palaces remained relatively strong, they regressed in their technological advancement; the palace administrations had to be


reduced. The commercial routes were temporarily interrupted; fields and labor could not be administrated centrally any longer. The interruption of traditional commercial routes had negative consequences insofar as many bronze processing facilities were blocked from essential supply and had to be given up, since there was neither copper nor thin (the mix of which results in bronze) found in the region. This resulted in a switch to iron processing, which was invented in Anatolia and in the Levant. This is a good example of how a crisis could provoke innovation. Arabs, Slavs, Turks, And Jews The ethnical map should change again in the 6th and 7th centuries. The Byzantine Empire came under pressure both on its northern and southern borders. The stability of the northern frontier was challenged by a mass of Slavic population under militarily and political guidance of the Awars (→ Awars), which pressed into the Balkan areas. A considerable part of the Empire's possessions should get lost for a period of time. At the same time, in the first half of the 7th century, the Egyptian and Syrian territories had to be given away to the Arab-Islamic world. The same was the case with Babylonia (→ Babylonia) and Persia (→ Persian Empire) (633-656). The Near East became ethnically re-arranged and predominantly Arabic. The process of overlay of the old-established population through Arabs lasted until the 10th century. The local farming population was forced to tributes (wheat, oil) since the nomadic Arab re-settlers were not familiar with farming. The Caliphs (→ Caliph) supported resettlement but kept the Byzantine-Greek settlements and the Greek administration. The South Slavic population occupied South Eastern Europe. It constitutes nowadays the majority of the population of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Macedonia. The Slavs are of Indo-European origin. Various hypotheses have been formulated about their pre-migration settlements. One of them assumes their origins in North Persia, where they lived as a riding people, which was stratified in tribes. When they moved into Eastern Europe, the original tribal structure had already disappeared. This hypothesis is primarily based on linguistic arguments. Another more popular hypothesis is contradictory to the first one. Sometime, but around 1000 BC the latest, Slavic tribes occupied the northern woodlands of Eastern Europe. The center of their settlements was probably the area between the middle and upper Vistula and the Dnieper Rivers. Until the 6th century AD, their territories already covered large areas of Eastern Europe. The next step in their expansion was the Balkans. They came from two directions basically: (1) Coming from the eastern fringes of the Carpathians to the lower Danube, they crossed the Danube several times in the years from 518 to 527. Finally, Byzantine defense was no longer able to save the Danube border. In several migration waves, they reached the Peloponnesus and even the Aegean islands. They spread over Macedonia and Bulgaria as well as over the Greek regions Thessaly and Epirus. The Slavic population in the Greek-Macedonian area was absorbed relatively quickly by Greek society and culture. (2) The other direction of expansion aimed at the Pannonian Plain. Passing the Carpathians, the Danube, Drava, and Sava Rivers since the 6 th and even more at the beginning of the 7th century, they penetrated the interior of the Balkans and reached the Adriatic coast. In 613 or 614, Awars (→ Awars) and Slavs jointly conquered Salona, the capital of the Byzantine province of Dalmatia. The devastation was followed by the establishment of new settlements. Several years later, probably in 626, the tribal federations of the Serbs and Croats arrived and occupied approximatively their present territories. Already in 681, the Byzantine Empire acknowledged the existence of a Bulgarian Empire that stretched over the Eastern Balkans. Actually, shortly after their arrival, the Bulgarians were able to establish


a well-organized empire. The impulses, however, did not come from the Slavic population of this area but from highly developed Turkic-Bulgarian tribes – a riding people that was mentioned for the first time in 354 AD as "Bulgarians" in historical sources. In the second half of the 7th century, a part of its population penetrated into the lower Danube area and began to organize the Slavic population that had arrived few decades earlier. The Slavic population, however, was considerably larger and the culture of the "riding people" had been absorbed by the Slavs in the course of the first two, three centuries after arrival. The Serbs arrived in the Balkan area around 626, but the unification of the tribes was a long-lasting process. It took until the 12th century, when the Great Duke Stefan Nemanja successfully unified the Serbian population under the umbrella of a united kingdom, which was established and acknowledged in 1217. This territorial core could be considerably extended in the course of the next one and a half centuries. The Albanian, Macedonian, and northern Greek (including Thessalonica) territories were absorbed. The Serbian emperor Stefan Dushan (1331-1355) was almost in the position to push the Byzantine emperor from his throne. In the second half of the 14th century, however, the Empire's central institutions became seriously weakened and delegated to regional notables. The power of the Serbian state decreased, and in 1459, its remnants were added to the Ottoman Empire. The Turkish languages do not belong to the Indo-European language family. Turkish is not only spoken in Turkey but also for instance by the Uigur population in China, in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Kyrgyzstan, by Bashkirs and by Tatars. The alleged first homeland of the Turkish people was in Inner Asia, approximately around the Lake Baikal. A Chinese document mentions the Turks for the first time in the 6th century AD. In the course of the following centuries, they left this area into various directions. One of its branches – the Oghuz people – moved towards the West. One of its tribes separated under the command of Seljuq (→ Seljuqs) in the 10th century and converted to Islam. They began to attack the Byzantine Empire in the 11th century and won a decisive battle against the Byzantine army at Mantzikert (Malazgirt), north of the Lake Van (1071) in Eastern Anatolia. After the battle, a large part of Anatolia was open for Turkish occupation and successively settled by Turkish population. Most of the Turkish migrants must have been nomads. They conducted sheep and goat breeding, but many of them became sedentary because Anatolia is suitable for rainfall-based agriculture. The first Ottoman tax registers from the second half of the 15th century reflect a mostly sedentarized Turkish population. Groups of Turks also settled in the Ottoman Balkan countries, but were displaced in the course of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century. Most of them fled to Anatolia. At present, small remaining Turkish minorities live in Macedonia, Northern Greece, and Eastern Bulgaria. A huge number of European Jews sought refuge in the Ottoman Empire, since they were suppressed in several European countries. Many of them arrived from Spain, Portugal, and Italy. These Sephardic Jews (→ Sephardim) were forbidden to stay in their countries by the end of the 15 th century. Thousands of Jews had to leave and moved to the Ottoman Empire, and especially to its major cities such as Istanbul and Thessalonica. In Romania, the 757,000 Jews (1930) constituted 4.2 percent of the total population, with the majority being Ashkenazi (→ Ashkenazi). In this country, anti-Semitism was strongly rooted. In Yugoslavia, however, anti-Semitism in organized form was unknown. This motivated many Jews after 1933 to leave Germany and move to Yugoslavia, where many of them became victims of the holocaust after the country was occupied by Nazi-Germany in 1941. In Bulgaria too, anti-Semitism could not be established. Most of the Bulgarian Jews had immigrated between 1492 and 1540. Their number was low: in 1887, a little bit more than 24,000; a number that doubled until 1934. Its share of the total population was always under one percent. In Greece, Thessalonica was the outstanding center of Jewish population and culture. Most of the Jews had immigrated shortly after 1492. For a while, the city constituted Europe's


biggest Jewish community, which always made up about one half of the city's population. Out of the city's overall population of 173,000 in 1912, 80,000 belonged to the different Jewish communities. In 1940, still about 1.7 million Jews lived in South East Europe. More than half of them did not survive WWII. Most of them were killed in German concentration camps. From the Jewish population of Thessalonica, 46,091 were deported in 1943. Many were rescued by the Italian embassy, which provided them with Italian passports. At present, only a small community of Jews lives in Greece. Many had left Greece after the creation of Israel. Similar is the case with the Arab countries, which were left by Jews in 1948 and the following years. This overview shows that the Balkans and the Near East, in the course of their long history, again and again witnessed population regroupings. With the settlement of the Slavs on the Balkan Peninsula (6th/7th centuries), the conquest of Egypt, Syria, and Iraq in the 7 th century by Arabs, as well as the Turkish conquest of a major part of Anatolia in the second half of the 11 th century, the basis of the current ethnic population structure was laid. Whereas in this time, the region was still attractive for migrants, most countries of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) became emigration countries of its labor seeking population since the 19th century. Labor Migration A completely different type of migration compared to previous collective forms of migration constitutes individual and familial labor migration. Eurasia Minor had been attractive for immigrants for thousands of years. Since the second half of the 19th century, however, emigration elements began to prevail over immigration factors. Responsible for that were the strong population increase in combination with antiquated agrarian technology and lacking efficiency in agricultural production. In addition, weakly developed markets and only marginal industrialization were not able to absorb the increasing number of labor force. On the other hand, the overseas markets with relatively good working conditions and demand for labor force became increasingly attractive. Labor migration from the region to the overseas labor markets increased enormously. However, not the entire population was attracted by these opportunities to the same extent. They were, at least at the beginning, mostly attractive for the Christian population; the Muslim population was rather reluctant. One of the most important reasons was that Muslim believers had problems with living in non-Muslim countries – if only temporarily; countries of destination were lacking religious institutions and were dominated by non-Muslim population. Between 1860 and 1914, approximately 1.2 million Ottoman citizens migrated to the Americas – about five percent of the total population. Among them were only 15-20 percent Muslims; the rest were Christians and Jews. From the countries of the Near East, especially Lebanon and Syria with their relatively high rates of Christian population, have long emigration traditions. Their labor migration was mainly directed towards the Americas. Fourteen million people of Lebanese background are actually living abroad, 6 million of them in Brazil; this is more than the population of Lebanon, which counts 4 million. Twenty million people with Syrian background live abroad, somewhat more than the country's population. The Balkan countries participated remarkably stronger in labor migration than the Turkish and Arab regions of the Ottoman Empire. Greece was mostly affected. At the eve of WWI, already ten percent of its population lived in the USA. For Turkish men, labor migration became an option for improving their material situation only since the early 1960s. Until the implementation of a liberal constitution in 1960, no freedom of travelling abroad existed. Egypt gave permission for labor migration only in 1971. The governments calculated that the country would take advantage of the technical skills of the returning emigrants. Similarly, the calculation of the Yugoslav leadership, which was the first communist country to open its borders for labor migrants to Western Europe, the booming industries of which had strong demand for labor force.


Yugoslavia and Turkey signed a series of pertinent bilateral agreements; Turkey for instance with the Federal Republic of Germany (1961), Austria, The Netherlands, and Belgium (1964), France (1965), and Sweden (1967). Labor migrants from Turkey and Yugoslavia were still called "Gastarbeiter". The majority of "Gastarbeiter", however, did not return to their home countries before they reached their status as pensioners. In 1971, there were already about 600,000 Yugoslav citizens officially living in the West; however, the unofficial number was about 850,000 – approximately five percent of the total population. Only the Greek proportion was higher. In the period between 1950 and 1975, roughly 1.2 million Greek citizens lived abroad – about ten percent of the total Greek population. Among them were many who left the country for political reasons in the course of military dictatorship from 1967 to 1974. According to official Turkish figures, in 2003, more than 3.5 million Turks lived abroad; out of them one million became naturalized. Eighty-five percent or three million of the emigrants live in Europe, two million of them in Germany. The rest lives in Russia, the Near East, Australia, Canada, and USA. One of the biggest problems that are related to labor migration is the integration of men and women into non-Muslim societies. Those who intend to keep their Muslim identity, according to experts, have a series of options: (1) they absorb themselves into the public sphere of the host country, but continue to identify with Islam without participating in the Muslim community life; (2) they live a hybrid western Muslim life, practice a kind of Euro-Islam or a liberal Islam, which integrates values such as individualism, secularism, and civil principles. Actively practicing Muslims also have several options: (1) They attend the Muslim community life but are not politically active; (2) they create Muslim enclaves, separate themselves from the rest of society, and establish a specific infrastructure with the aim to affirm their identity; (3) Islamists (→ Islamists) have the aim to re-establish the unity and dominance of the Muslim peoples in the world. Elements such as pan-Islamic social and political solidarity, enmity toward the West and obligation to the jihad – and to terrorism – constitute a specific form of political protest, which is shared only by a small minority. Many questions that were relevant to the first generation of migrants have become already irrelevant for the second and third generation, since they are completely absorbed by the host society. Labor migration creates problems of adaptation and integration even beyond Europe. One should not oversee that the Arab Peninsula has become one of the centers of world-wide migration. In this case, a push-region became an attractive pull-region. Between 1990 and 2005, the region has hosted almost seven million international migrants. The migrant stock increased from 13 million to almost 20 million people. In 2005, the Arabic world hosted one tenth of migrants worldwide and one quarter of the migrants from the economically low developed world. Six out of ten migrants into the Arab world live in one of the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) consisting of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi-Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Before 1960, there was only seasonal labor migration, especially of fishermen and pearl divers. In 1975, already 3.8 million migrants (40 percent of the total population) lived in the GCC countries. In 2005, three Arabic countries were among the 20 countries in the world with the highest influx of migrants: Saudi-Arabia with 6.4 million, the United Arab Emirates with 3.2 million, and Jordan with 2.2 million. In the UAE, the proportion of immigrants is 71 percent and in Kuwait 62 percent of the total population. The internal Arab migration dynamics was caused by the different income levels. In the 1980s, an unskilled Egyptian peasant could earn 30 times more money in construction business in Saudi-Arabia than at home and a Jordan engineer three times more in Kuwait. Until 1974, when the oil price rapidly increased, the main migration was caused by Arab neighbor countries (about 80 percent). In Saudi-Arabia, this proportion was only 37 percent in 1980 because of the influx of Indians, Pakistani, and Sri Lankans. They are appreciated as highly reliable and cheap workers. In 2002, the proportion of Arabs from non-Gulf states was 3.5 million and those from Asia 7.5 million (out of


them 3.2 million from India). Interesting is the Kingdom of Jordan with high unemployment- and immigration rates. The immigrants (primarily from Asia) are mostly unskilled, while emigrants into the GCC countries and the USA mainly consist of skilled workers. One of the characteristics is the low proportion of women among migrants into the Arabic world. It is about 36 percent on the average; in Qatar and Saudi-Arabia, even under 15 percent. Most of the (illegal) women come from Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Bangladesh. In addition to that, there is forced prostitution of women primarily from the countries of the former Soviet Union. Another specific situation on the labor market exists in Israel. In 1986, the proportion of Arab day-to-day migrants from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank was seven percent. In 1987, Israelis began to substitute them with foreigners from Bulgaria, Romania (construction business), Thailand (agriculture), and Philippines (caregivers). The fall of the Iron Curtain in the Communist Balkan countries on the one hand, and the worldwide increasing request for oil on the other hand have stimulated enormous migration streams from Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) to Western Europe and overseas; at the same time, oil producing countries attract migrants. Migration as well as immigration has considerable impact – on economy, society and the individual. New forms of life emerge, for instance the trans-national family. Individual experiences in the receiving country can become culturally enriching or disappointing. People might even leave their country of origin forever.

Unit 6: Pre-Industrial Modes Of Economy
As almost everywhere in the world, pre-industrial communities were and are characterized by initial production (agrarian products and mineral resources). Also the most important non-productive sector – commercial exchange – was dependent on agrarian production and mining since initially, only goods deriving from initial production could be exchanged- for instance cotton, which provided a basis for the exchange of goods. The most valuable trading objects were those that the ground provides for free – important raw materials such as obsidian (→ obsidian), gold, silver, copper, and ore. The major part of the pre-industrial population worked in and lived on initial production. In Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor), this period took about eight to nine millennia and ended only half a century ago – about two hundred years after England. Since the time period covered here is considerably long, only very simple questions can be treated such as to whom the soil belonged, who worked on it, and what the basic differences between sedentary and nomadic peoples were. Until the end of the 19th century, the manpower of slaves was an important factor in the Muslim world – a fact that also has to be addressed. Sedentary And Nomadic Peoples The modes of production of sedentary people on the one side and nomads on the other side are basically different. Peasants usually conducted – as far as the natural conditions did not force them to monoculture – subsistent economy. This means that they produced almost everything they needed for themselves, including the required working instruments. One of the consequences was that they were only loosely bound to the market. The failure of a harvest could create enormous problems, since the missing products had to be taken from elsewhere. This pushed peasants very often into permanent dependency from powerful landowners and other wealthy people, who were able to establish and maintain storage buildings. Depending on the environment and the kind of animal they kept, pastoral communities developed different forms of organization. This variety included sedentary communities (in the case of pig and steer breeding) as well as semi- and full nomadic forms (sheep, goat, horse, and camel herding). Nomadic economy was always one-sided concentrated on the animal and its products. They could not rely on their


self-made products only. Nomads were militarily superior to peasants regarding efficiency of power and dominance, and regarded the conduct of peasants' work as inappropriate and humiliating. They usually had only two alternatives: they exchanged their products for grain or other food on the market, or they were able to suppress agrarian communities, which could be forced to deliver tributes in goods or money. Robbery and pillage were additional alternatives in critical supply situations. Mobile pastoralism must have emerged from the accompanying of gazelle herds in the Ice Age. The herds were autonomously in search of winter and summer pastures, and men learned to cover their meat requirement from the herds. They began to establish hunting camps in the vicinity of the herds' winter and summer pastures. Sometime, men began to single out animals from the herds and familiarized themselves with them. Steppe and desert could be turned into useful areas after the domestication of the horse and the camel. Around 4200/4000, people in the Pontic-Caspian steppe began to ride horses; they were also used in warfare. From about 3300, it became feasible to use simple carts on wheels for support in animal breeding in the steppe. Now it became possible to move further into the steppe because they could carry all utensils they needed for pasture purposes with them. The chariot should be developed out of such simple transport carts, which was more frequently used after 2100. Horse and chariot were rapidly distributed in the Near East, and successful warfare became increasingly dependent on well-trained horses (see Chapter 1). The camel, highly appreciated because of its resistance against thirst and heat, and the one-bumped dromedary, however, were domesticated only by the end of the 2nd millennium BC. A good riding dromedary may cover a distance of 12 to 18 km at once, without a break, and cross 40 to 80 km per day. It may weigh until 650 kilograms and survive 3 to 17 days without water. This is because its body temperature of 34 to 40 degrees can adapt to the outside temperature and thus delay evapotranspiration. Caused by dehydration, it can lose up to one quarter of its weight. These advantages allowed for the extension of pastoralism to the deserts' interior. Camel breeders visited oases during the dry summer-time. Sometime between 500 and 100, the camel saddle was invented, which enabled the camel owner to ride and established his proverbial mobility as a battlesome Bedouin. His superiority allowed also for the collection of tributes and protection money from the sedentary population. The Arabs were exceptionally gifted camel breeders and felt themselves highly superior to the sheep and goat breeders or peasants. They were, in the truest sense of the word, the "kings of the desert". The basic principles of nomadic pastoralism hardly changed in the course of millennia. Documents of the Mesopotamian city-state of Mari (→ Mari) (18th century BC) show that their kings and princes owned large herds, which were taken care of by civil servants, chief-pastoralists, rented pastoralists, tenants, and slaves. The documents also show that the herds were not jointly owned by tribes but were considered property of single families. Small-scale owners prevailed. This constitutes an important hint for a basic rule of nomadic economy, which was observed until the 20th century: the animal never was the joint property of a bigger group but individual property of a family unit, which used to consist of a nuclear family and/or several married brothers. Joint rights of tribal groups consisted only in access to pastures and related water rights. Among the joint tasks was the protection of a herd, because this needed the concentrated effort of a men's collective. As long as population density was low, the exercise of pastoral rights was not a big problem. As soon as population increase limited the pastures, violent conflicts between groups about access to pastures arose. What was most decisive for the nomadic mode of economy was the safe change between summer and winter pastures in order to benefit from the changing vegetation in the course of a year. This change was organized primarily vertically between different altitudes. In relation to that, milieus of short and long distances can be differentiated. The Dinaric Mountains of the Western Balkans for instance constitute a milieu of short distance, since a considerable altitude has to be accomplished within a short distance. The


distance between summer and winter pasture could be accomplished within one day. This milieu promoted various forms of semi-nomadism with a permanent village in the winter pasture area and mobile huts or tents in the summer pasture area. Because of the short distance, the village was never completely abandoned in the summer season and permanent communication between both sites could be kept upright. Contrary, however, was the situation in milieus of long distance, which could be found for instance in Anatolia as well as in the steppe and desert areas. Here, migration could take weeks or even months and therefore all members of a pastoral group participated in it. There was obviously no need for the establishment of permanent villages. Pastoral and tribal communities could reach completely different sizes. According to the above mentioned documents of Mari (→ Mari), tribal confederations consisted of 1,000 to 2,000 members. The family group usually comprised also married sons and slaves; family groups consisted of up to 400 members. Abraham, the biblical ancestor of three religions, is reported to have commanded 318 slaves born under the roofs of his tents. More than thousand persons might have resided in his camp consisting of 60 to 120 tents. Nobody else knew the terrain and all transport-related difficulties better than the nomads. They had the capacity to lead caravans under the highest possible security conditions through deserts or mountains. Therefore, the caravan commerce on the basis of horses, camels, donkeys, and mules as pack animals very often became the second main economic pillar of nomadism. In many cases, caravan trade turned nomads into rich tradesmen. Mecca is a good example. The city played an integral role on the Arab Peninsula, which was politically and socially fragmented. Its religious sanctuary, the Caaba, attracted many pilgrims of different tribal origin, already in pre-Islamic period. The annual pilgrimage period was also a period of ceasefire and repayment of debts. The tribal group of the Kuraish, to which also Muhammad belonged, had taken over control of Mecca already in the 5th century AD. In the middle of the 6th century, Mecca inherited the position as most important caravan city of the Near East from Palmyra (→ Palmyra) (Syria) and Petra (Jordan). The Mesopotamian city-states could hardly defend themselves against the nomads. They used to come from the Syrian Desert in the west or the Zagros Mountains (→ Zagros) in the east. Nomads were basically not interested in destroying cultures but in participating in their wealth. One of the results of conflicts between sedentary people and Semitic nomads (→ Semitic) was the establishment of the NorthSemitic culture with Babylon (→ Babylonia) as one of its centers around 2500. Also North Mesopotamia bordered a highland – the alleged "original" homeland of the Indo-European nomads. They mastered horse breeding, and the horse became the basis for their forays to the plains. The prosperity of oasis settlements was dependent on their security from nomads, who lived deep in the deserts or on its fringes. They had to conclude arrangements with them. Such arrangements were also in the interest of nomad communities, which did not have any intentions for conquest but needed access to drinking water, which they could only get in the water-rich oases. As far as it can be reconstructed, state-like communities were not based on nomads' economy in any historical period of the Balkans and the Near East but always on sedentary agriculture. Even in the early phase of the Ottoman Empire according to a census taken in the 1620s, the proportion of nomads in Anatolia was 16.2 percent of the total population, compared to 3.6 percent only in the Balkans. These proportions actually might have been higher – in the Syrian-Arab Desert even considerable higher – however, it becomes clear that pastoralism could not constitute the primary economic basis. Due to the climatic conditions and the precarious conditions for irrigation agriculture in Mesopotamia, the centers of sedentary agriculture moved toward the Balkans and the Black Sea region, where agriculture and animal breeding could complement one another. Irrigation agriculture required considerable skills, the adequate proportioning of water according to changing weather conditions, the parallel drainage of the soil


in order to prevent its salinization as well as the permanent observation and maintenance of canals, ditches, sluices, and dikes. As discussed in Chapter 3, political stability was the basic condition for maintaining irrigation agriculture. This was not always given. Rainfall-based agriculture in the Balkans was not as productive as irrigation agriculture, but less susceptible to crises. Owners And Cultivators Of The Soil Nomadic communities as well as sedentary agriculture developed into stratified, hierarchically organized communities, even though they were based on different considerations. The leadership of nomadic communities needed no more legitimization than success in the provision with fertile meadows or in plunder economy. In the case of sedentary peoples, the necessity for the establishment of hierarchical social structures emerged on a broader basis. This, for instance, was the case in irrigation rice-cultivation or irrigation agriculture. For its organization, a high level of communication, hierarchy, and coordination were indispensable. Beyond such specializations, an analogous necessity of submission was not given a priori. One problem, however, must have arisen beyond a certain degree of population density: the question of protection. How could a sedentary agrarian community protect itself against warlike nomadic communities, which tried to capture the last harvest? Who was powerful enough to provide for desired security and what was the price of it? Agriculture in pre-industrial times was exposed to crises. How could a farmstead overcome the loss of harvests? Here, the question of power comes into play. In resolving this question, the first tributes and taxes were collected from unprotected peasants, for the benefit of powerful persons and institutions offering protection. The historical development of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) demonstrates that only a few basic models were practiced or could be practiced. The concrete form would differ from region to region and from time to time. Temple And Palace Economy The model practiced by city-states of Mesopotamia with irrigation agriculture was the centrally organized temple and palace economy; but also private forms of economy must have existed. With the increasing importance of irrigation economy, priests were ascribed additional functions, if secular domination was not yet established,. Being on the top of the social pyramid, they organized and coordinated drainage and canal work. In addition, they were obliged to establish "diplomatic" relations with the temple-cities of the neighborhood. Finally, they were also responsible for the organization of trade, as the temples also functioned as central depots of goods. Recent research indicates different modes of economy in Mesopotamian city-states. The cultivated areas of several city-states were obviously divided into two parts. The first part was attached to the temple and belonged to the temple's activities, the central task of which originally consisted in the organization of sacrifices; from that origin, additional economic activities emerged. While the people, who served in the temple, were neither free nor allowed to possess land, others working on the lands were free; however, they were obliged to pay taxes and serve as workers; in other cases, tax exemption of soil ownership prevailed. The temple's administrative body was hierarchically structured. On the peak were the priests; they commanded civil servants, judges, artists, artisans, people obliged to labor services, workers in irrigation economy, soldiers, female slaves in weaving services, and male slaves. The emerging of first wars constituted a new challenge, which needed experienced commanders in the case of attack and defense. The function of a secular king as a military commander was the response to this challenge. The king's palace economy emerged in addition to temple economy; and the latter could have been integrated into palace economy or the palace provided temples with subsidies for the


maintenance of sacrifice services. The king's palace (therefore "palace economy") as well as the temple were directly involved in production and commerce. They organized temple- and "palace factories" and "working houses" for textile production. This was primarily women's work, but with the invention of the hand loom, whose handling required more power, women were displaced from production. Textiles became the main export product of Mesopotamia. The majority of workers were slaves. From documents found in the archives of Nippur (→ Nippur) we know that the palace was the residence of the members of the royal household and high dignitaries and functioned as an economic center. On the local level, village heads had to observe irrigation. Also canal inspectors are mentioned in the documents. With the emergence of the secular rule, the question of the relation between temple and palace arose. Temples were organized regionally and locally, as the main deity had regional or local responsibilities. As soon as the secular ruler had established trans-regional dominance, palace economy also gained a trans-regional function; therefore, the local or regional temple economy could not compete any longer. Although the kings were obliged to do good for the temples, contradictory interests between palace and temple emerged. The Babylonian King (→ Babylonia) Hammurabi (→ Hammurabi) for instance, tried to bring the temple economy under his control. Also, a certain amount of land was attached to the palace as well, which was rented out by the kings. The kings also distributed land to their family members for free, who in return were allowed to collect tributes from the peasants. The amount of tributes at least in single cases was up to two thirds of the harvest; only one third remained with the tenant. According to other sources, the tributes were one fifth to one half of the harvest. A kind of tax-rent system existed. The tax tenant had to deliver a certain amount of naturals or silver to the royal depots in advance and had to compensate this amount and more in order to achieve individual surplus. The majority of the population must have been tenants and agricultural workers. Tenants obviously had no competence over the land they worked upon. They concluded treaties with the landowners and received draught animals as well as workers and slaves from the owner. The basic functioning of the temple and palace economy appears repeatedly in history: the ruler appropriated a portion of his country for his personal use and economic exploitation; the tributes and taxes were put in his private casket, which he used at his will. He put tax tenants and intermediate tenants in charge, who handled administration. Tributes in kind served as a basis for additional economic activities, such as trade. Since he was obliged to take care of the celebration of the gods by priests, he paid attention that the temple (later the Church) had sufficient land and income in order to be able to carry out their duties. The Greek Free Citizen And Farmer The economy of the ancient oriental cultures and city-states was dominated by the palaces and sanctuaries, which appropriated the biggest part of the cultivated land and organized technical production and external trade. The Greek-Roman world was built upon private property only; this was a world of private property of soil, private commerce and crafts. The overwhelming majority of the ancient Greek population (→ ancient Greece) (at least about 90 percent of it) had its economic base in agriculture. The free citizen of the city-state was either peasant or owner of an agricultural domain, which he worked himself or had slaves for. Without agricultural production, there would have been no urban economy. The dominant form of property was small-scale ownership, the "kleros", which was passed over from the father to the sons. In a Greek city-state, land was basically tax-exempt. The payment of a tithe or other forms of direct taxation for Greeks was a sign of submission and violent rule. This did not exclude emergency taxation in the case of wars, nor did it exclude wealthier Greeks from taking care of the majority of public expenditures,


even though they were freed from taxation. The public expenditures of a Greek city-state were usually financed by wealthy citizens, since a state budged and an administration in modern sense did not exist. This service was called "liturgy". It originated in the pre-classic period, when noblemen took care of the public services – the construction of temples for instance; they funded the conduct of public duties by their private labor force and materials. In the classical period, liturgy was honor and obligation at the same time. Wealthier citizens were charged with certain obligations: the command of a warship for the period of one year or certain functions in the cult. The honorary character of liturgy was very important; this was also a moralistically clean method to legitimize one's wealth vis-à-vis the poor. This situation changed in the later Hellenistic period (→ Hellenism), in Macedonia, and in the Seleucid Empire (→ Seleucids). These territorial empires did not consist of a homogeneous group of fully entitled, free citizens and peasants any longer. Conquered land was classified as the king's land and was rented out to indigenous peasants. Royal functionaries received domains from the royal soil funds, with tenants working on them. These functionaries only benefited from a certain portion of the total of tributes and taxes. The benefit was bound to the exercise of a certain function and could be withdrawn by the king (provided that he was powerful enough). Already under the successors of Alexander the Great (→ Alexander the Great), liturgies were increasingly considered a burden. The Roman emperors systemized them and made them obligatory. This Greek model of a state with free citizens and peasants, who were obliged to military service, had no historical precedence. The model of office domains with attached rights or benefits from peasants' tributes and taxes, however, was not entirely new. It was already practiced at least one millennium before, in the time of the Babylonian (→ Babylonia) King Hammurabi (→ Hammurabi). Here, officers, who recruited soldiers for the army, received the benefits from tax-free domains. In the expectation that the successors will take over this obligation, these domains were allowed to be passed over in male line – a practice that was basically exercised also in the Hellenistic period (→ Hellenism), in the Byzantine Empire, and in Islamic empires.

The Byzantine Model The agrarian system of the Byzantine Empire was based on small-scale agrarian property until the 11th century. Large domains constituted an exception and were limited to the state and to the Church. Interestingly enough, similarly to ancient Mesopotamia, the "state" sector played a crucial role. The state not only produced goods but also monopolized commerce with sensible products such as silk, purple color, or salt. It also controlled the credit-, currency-, and banking system. Thanks to its fiscal politics, the state remained the economic vehicle of the Empire, like in Roman times. The main revenues were achieved by tax collection. Taxes were used to pay the salaries for civil service and for the army, for defense measures and infrastructure, as well as for tributes to neighboring rulers. These tributes (gold, silver, and silk) could achieve an enormous amount; wars, however, were much more expensive. As long as the war campaigns were successful, expenses were compensated by territorial achievements. Especially after the loss of a major part of Anatolia to the Seljuqs (→ Seljuqs) in 1071, the Empire was confronted with significant financial turbulences, which could not be solved until its end. The most important tax was land tax, collected from the landowners directly by the financial administration. The tax depended on the peasants' property size and quality. Every 30 years, the cadastre was updated. The village was collectively responsible for the payment of taxes. Peasant households, which


had to fulfill military duties (for instance in border regions) as well, enjoyed a reduction of taxes. Such peasant-soldiers obviously existed since the 7th century. Due to the low population density, the Byzantine peasant enjoyed a high degree of freedom: he could freely sell his products, use his land at his will and was even allowed to sell it. Cleared land could be used jointly by the village community or distributed among its members. The peasant was allowed to leave the village and settle anywhere else. In the 10th century, and especially after a famine (927/28) caused by climatic instability, peasants began to sell their land to "powerful" people. The emperors intervened. If, for instance, a peasant sold his land in a case of emergency for less than half of its value, the buyer lost the land and also the amount of money already paid. However, these interventions were unsuccessful after all. Since the end of the 11th century, a system of large domains and peasant tenants emerged. Now, these domains were not only in the hands of the state and the Church but also of powerful people, recruited from the civil and militarily elites. The latter bought land from the peasants or received it from the state for a limited period of time. This kind of transaction significantly limited the funds of state domains. The peasants were still not tied to their land but were obliged to work on it, if they wanted to keep it. Since the 11 th century, they had the right to remain on their land, as long as it was cultivated by them. Thus, they still enjoyed certain property rights; a private judicature of landlords still did not exist. Therefore, the peasant's decision to sell his land to a powerful landlord could be considered rational, since he counted on the landlord's support after a failed harvest or his protection against the desires of tax administrators. Since the end of the 11th century, a mass of royal land was distributed to secular lords for lifetime benefit. Feudalization processes became clearly visible, when the lords began to pass such land to the next generation without the inheritor's obligation to exercise the services of his father. The peasants' taxes and tributes were not passed to the fiscal administration any longer but were kept by the lords. The consequence was an increasing loss of income of the state. At the same time, the former centralized tax administration was weakened and could not be kept upright by the state, which had to introduce a tax-tenant system. In this spiral of increasingly shifting power from the central administration to the landlords, the state lost its regulating functions.

The Islamic Model The Islamic Caliphate seems to have been involved in a similar dynamic even earlier. The point of departure, however, was different. According to Islamic Law, cultivated land was basically God's land. This meant concretely that the Caliphs (→ Caliph) as successors of the prophet were responsible for the distribution of the land; de facto it was the state's land and according to Islamic Law, there existed only two legal categories, which were exempt from this rule: (1) religious foundations, which for instance served the construction and maintenance of pious institutions such as mosques or Koran schools; (2) under certain circumstances, state's land could be turned into private property. Both possibilities were exercised in the newly conquered territories since the first half of the 7th century; the amount of land exempt from the Caliph's direct control remained small. As far as the mass of land is concerned, the existing agrarian relations of the time before the conquest were not touched upon. Although legally living and working on state's land, peasantry was permitted to cultivate their land as private property under certain limiting conditions. The power of the Caliphs decreased around the middle of the 10 th century. After the loss of several provinces, the military situation worsened and tax revenues decreased. One of the consequences was that the army, and especially the officers could not be paid any longer in cash but were provided with the benefits


from peasants' land instead. Depending on his rank in the military hierarchy, an officer received the usufruct of a pertinent amount of a peasant's goods. They did not become owner of the soil but only had the benefit of a certain portion of the peasants' taxes and tributes; the rest had to be passed over to fiscal administration. This benefit was confined to the actual military service. As soon as the officer retired, he had to leave his office estate and another officer stepped in. Thus, the benefit under regular circumstances could not become heritable, the officers had no personal legal capacity over the peasants, and therefore, the emergence of the feudal hierarchy was undermined. What remained was a sufficient provision for the time of active service. In the long run, this system had a least one negative consequence: the benefit-taker was heavily interested in collecting tributes from the peasants but did not take care in any way of the peasants' land substance in the sense of investments into infrastructure. The Seljuqs (→ Seljuqs) also took over this system and extended it to civil servants and religious dignitaries. Contrary to its Islamic predecessors, the Ottoman Empire applied the system of office-land since the very beginning of its existence in order to establish an army as numerous as possible. The core of the Ottoman conquering army consisted of the cavalry in the 15th/16th centuries. cavalrymen were provided with office-land for the time of their active service. Depending on the revenue from his office-land, the cavalryman had to appear with one or more equipped horses and riders when he was called for service. In the first half of the 16th century, the Ottoman Empire was able to recruit 130,000 armed soldiers out of office-land; in the 18th century, however, only 50,000. The system could not be kept upright for various reasons. The Empire had reached the peak of its expansion; what followed was a phase of stagnation. The cavalry, compared to infantry at least for warfare in Europe, had lost its former importance. The system collapsed because the increasingly weakened administration was no longer able to remove inactive office holders from the officeland and to substitute them by active ones, and land became increasingly heritable. Private, market-oriented plantation-like domains emerged initially only on wasteland that was taken in cultivation. Until the 18th century, mostly members of the ruling elite were engaged in this kind of activity. Work on these emerging domains was done by slaves or sharefarmers. As a result of administrative insufficiency, peasants' land was increasingly turned into private land. Many peasants lost their land to local notables and officers through dubious court decisions and were turned into tenants. Moreover, fiscal administration in the 17th century began to rent out state's land to privateers for lifetime and later on forever, in order to fill the ailing treasury. This also led to the worsening of the peasants' situation. In these various ways, a new class of landowners emerged, who, although commercially oriented, were not able or willing to transform their profits into industrial investment. Lebanon, for instance, represented an exception. The former landlords turned into successful tradesmen and entrepreneurs based in Beirut, which had become a growing focus of export trade. In 1858, a law on agrarian reforms was passed, which strengthened those landowners' property rights, who brought land under their control more or less illegally, which implied worsening consequences for peasantry. A considerable difference to general European trends became visible. While almost everywhere in Europe, peasantry was freed from the landlord's domination in the course of the 19th century, an analogous abolition of serfdom was not initiated in the Ottoman Empire. In the course of the 19 th and early 20th century, it was up to the newly independent Balkan states to chase away the Muslim landowners with little or no reimbursement – except in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where the Muslim landlords were protected by the Austro-Hungarian administration (1878-1918), and in Albania, where they dominated political life until the takeover by the Communists after WWII. In the Arab Near East, the Ottoman agrarian relations prevailed until the second half of the 20th century, when land reforms were initiated. This short overview for sure does not evoke the impression of revolutionary changes in the relationship between the minority of landlords and those who worked on the land. Every form of pre-modern mode of dominance had to win dominance over land and the peasants working on it. The free citizen and


peasant of the Greek polis (→ polis) was no exception because he had slaves at hand who did the work. There are two reasons for not considering the peasants of the Balkans and the Near East a potentially revolutionary mass. The first reason is that peasants never were the lowest stratum of social hierarchy. The second one is that both regions were endemically under-populated. The demographic developments will be addressed in Chapter 9. What remains here is to address the problem of slavery, which was abolished in the Ottoman Empire only at the beginning of the 20th century. Slaves To us, the institution of slavery seems inhuman, it is condemnable and rightfully prohibited. This topic seems to be temporally distanced. However, its remnants were abolished only half a century ago. What are the characteristics of male and female slaves? It is hardly possible to provide a solid definition that covers the long history of slavery. Slaves were basically human property of a master, who was free to sell or donate them to whomever. Usually, they were forced to exercise physical labor. Female slaves could be used or misused by their masters for sexual services, while free women were not allowed to use male slaves for sexual purposes. Basically, a differentiation should be made between household slaves, military slaves, and forced laborers. Already the Codex Hammurabi (→ Codex Hammurabi) in the first half of the second millennium offers early notes on slaves and their status. They were permitted to own property and to increase it, and also had the opportunity to buy them free. We have to assume that the majority of the workers in temple and palace economy were non-free male and female slaves. As it seems, the majority of the ancient Egyptian society consisted of slaves. Most of them probably served in temples – and were therefore forced laborers. In Greek antiquity, the enslavement of non-Greeks was a matter of course. Most of the construction work, work in mines, in crafts, and in agriculture was conducted by slaves. They constituted about one third of the urban population. They and possibly their family members were mainly recruited from prisoners of wars. Most of them were used in home service. Household slaves were not completely without protection. In Athens for instance, the public did not agree with the unjustified beating of slaves. They could be bought at slave markets, were received in a ceremony in the new household, and received a new name. Rich Athenians kept a maximum of 12 to 15 slaves. Usually, they were set free after several years by redemption or donation of freedom. They were permitted to take over respected professions such as potters, cooks, teachers, and doctors. Since the second half of the 4th century, Athenian slaves were allowed to conduct commercial activities, could act as witnesses at court, conclude treaties, and were prosecuted by courts – they received legal capacity. Were ancient and Muslim societies slave-keeping societies in the sense of the economic exploitation of slaves according to the model of Marx and Engels? A majority of scientists have rejected this assessment by arguing that there were hardly any economic reasons for slavery. In a society, whose masses were incredibly poor, it was probably more convenient to pay for someone's actual work than feed a slave the whole year. No economic sector would have crashed without the work of slaves.. The only actual advantage of the master-slave relation was that the slave could be forced to conduct works, which a free man probably refused to do. Only therefore slaves' work could become economically important. Forced laborers as mining slaves were for sure of economic importance. Silver mining in the Laurion Mountains, for instance, was of highest economic priority for Athens since the early 5th century BC. It was very profitable because the digging was conducted by slaves (and children). Silver mining was extremely exhausting as the horizontal tunnels were extremely narrow and partly only 60 cm high. Early Christianity basically rejected slavery but did not question the system of slavery completely, since slaves also worked in clerical domains. The Church confined its interventions to improvements in


certain sectors. For Islam, slavery was no problem – as long as slaves were non-Muslims. Here, slaves as soldiers should gain extremely high importance. To a minor extent, this phenomenon can be traced back to Hellenistic (→ Hellenism) and Roman times. One of the most remarkable periods in the history of slavery was the Mamluk (→ Mamluks) domination in Egypt (1250-1517). Already since the 9th century, Turkish slaves had been recruited for the Egyptian army – a tendency that increased around the middle of the 13 th century. The slave troops were called "mamluk" ("those who are owned") in Arabic. These troops, however, revolted, dethroned the Ayyubid dynasty (→ Ayyubids) (1171-1250), and installed one of their commanders as sultan, and a more than 250–year-long Mamluk domination began. The example of the Mamluk domination has to be seen within the larger context of domination methods. Both Arab and Turkish rulers were permanently confronted with the problem of tribal loyalties, which could be easily directed against them. Therefore, they could not actually rely on the loyalty of military commanders and high-ranking civil servants. Consequently, it was in their interest to promote the advancement of men without tribal loyalties. This was the case with slaves. The Seljuqs (→ Seljuqs) for example, substituted their tribal army by slaves as soon as they were in power. The Ottomans improved this system. Their sultans used the slaves for palace- and military services. Since warfare did not bring in sufficient slaves, the so called "boys' collection" was introduced in the Christian population of the Empire. Boys were taken from families and brought to the capital city, where they received a Muslim education and training. The Ottomans did not consider this as enslavement but rather an emergency measure. First, the recruited boys were used in the public labor sector and were then usually transferred to the Janissaries (→ Janissaries). During military service, they were not allowed to marry. Also outside the Empire's territory there was sufficient non-Muslim population, where slaves could be recruited – especially in the Caucasus and in the Balkans. This made the abolition of the "boys' collection" possible in 1637. At the time of Sultan Mehmet II (1451-1481), only about 15,000-20,000 slaves lived on the territory of the Empire; this number increased rapidly in the following decades – from about 60,000 in 1568 to about 100,000 in 1609. It is estimated that about one fifth of Istanbul's population were slaves. Slaves were also used as craftsmen, for example as silk weavers. They were allowed to work independently and earn money. Many of them were set free by their masters or bought themselves free. The perspective of emancipation prevented many of them from running away. Silk processing in Anatolian Bursa, which was export-oriented, was based on slaves' labor. Emancipated slaves played a significant role as silk manufacturers, traders, and money exchangers. Despite permanent international protests, slavery was permitted until the beginning of the 20th century. After the slave markets had been closed in 1854, slavery was prohibited in 1908 by the Ottoman authorities. However, in single successor states such as Yemen and Saudi-Arabia, slavery survived until 1962. Which were the consequences of these roughly sketched developments in Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor)? According to Islamic legal theory, land under Islamic domination was God's land – practically land run by the state. Contrary to the early medieval kingdoms and empires of Western Europe, Caliphs (→ Caliph) and Islamic emperors were not forced to share domination with local and regional lords or other social forces (noblemen, citizens). Sharing in power with local and regional powers in the West finally led to a democratization of political systems and an implementation of the interventionist principle; feudal regional powers had easier access to the regulation of social relations than centralistic, despotic apparatuses, which in pre-modern times did not have the means to regulate social relations. Islamic political and agrarian relations remained tributary. In theory (not always is practice), Islamic rulers were able to preserve their claim of regulation of state land. Civil and military servants were provided for their period of service with income from peasantry; they constituted a privileged stratum but were no noblemen in the West-European sense. They were neither


judge nor were they authorized to intervene in customary laws confirmed by the rulers. This tributary system – except for the late-Ottoman Empire – led to relative freedom even for non-Muslim peasant families. But in the long run, this system had two disadvantages: (1) the central administration became despotic and (2) the privileged class of usufructuaries was not interested in investments nor technological improvements of their only temporarily profitable domains. The consequence was the stagnation of the agrarian sector in the Balkans and the Near East compared to its relative dynamics in Western Europe. This was one of the main reasons for the comparatively late way of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) to the Industrial Revolution (see Chapter 7).

Unit 7: Late Industrialization
The Ottoman Empire entered the 20th century as an agrarian state without remarkable industry. This was also the case with the Balkan states, which caved from the Empire in the course of the 19 th century. They had become the periphery of the North-Atlantic economic avant-garde. Several reasons responsible for this comparably bad economic performance have already been mentioned. The Ottoman Empire as a tributary state did not pay attention to an intensification of the social relations of its subjects. What seemed to constitute an advantage for the non-Muslim population at the emergence of Ottoman domination – namely the establishment of a far-reaching autonomous administration within the Empire – turned out to be a disadvantage both for the Muslim and the non-Muslim population. Ottoman society was hardly an integrated one but was split into parallel societies. The non-Muslim populations with their capacity for advancement were, to a large extent, kept away from constructive and responsible collaboration with the institutions of the state and the social elite. For the pre-modern agrarian state, agrarian production and a high population density had priority because this was a pre-condition for an accelerated exchange of goods, economic surplus, and initial capital accumulation, which could have paved the way for the advancement of other economic sectors. Pre-modern agrarian worlds were characterized by only slow changes, and therefore, the consequences of the global shift of power and dominance potentials from the Near East and the Balkans to the North-Atlantic area did not become rapidly visible. This global shift may have begun already in the 12th century, but its indications became definitely clearer for the 16th century. Most of the relevant economic factors began to concentrate in North Western and Central Europe – especially the economic capital. The rapid Ottoman expansion and the "Islamic danger" had hidden these underlying processes of center-periphery relations. We should avoid the mistake of constructing seemingly irreversible development paths, which could not be left by the increasingly peripheralized nations. It has to be underlined that at least in the Near Eastern provinces of the Ottoman Empire, industrialization according to the West European pattern was hardly possible because of the ecological circumstances and the scarce of natural resources. This statement does not exclude alternative ways into industrialization. For people living in the 16th century, it must have been anything but self-evident that the emerging West European capitalism would once become the victorious economic model. When European colonialism began to include the Islamic world, it must have become clear to the responsible actors that the power relations between East and West had become asymmetrically distributed. But this is the historian's perspective, who has the advantage of judging and summarizing these processes centuries after. For the contemporaries, this shift that took generations was hard to realize. Was there a way to reverse these development paths to the contrary? It is not correct to assume that the Ottoman elite did not observe this development with concern. Around 1800, it began to cautiously formulate a reform agenda that is not yet completed by its successor states two centuries later. A simple catch-up for most of these states was not possible because of the lack of decisive raw materials: iron ore and water


power. A central energy source consisting of charcoal was widely missing because of little woodland in the Near East. Proto-industrialization was comparatively most advanced in the Balkans. The first section of this chapter will address several aspects of the pre-industrial mode of production of the Ottoman Empire and will examine the role of the guilds in it. For the second section, it seems to be necessary to pose the question whether Islam actually constituted an obstacle for a developmental path towards capitalism – a frequently discussed hypothesis. The third section analyzes the efficiency of several catch-up strategies in the period from the second half of the 19th to the beginning of the 21st century and, finally, in the fourth section, the contemporary economic potentials of the countries of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) will be discussed. Guilds, Early Capitalism, And Manufactures Manufactures – these are workshops, which carried out mass production in handwork – usually functioned in a way that strenuous entrepreneurs provided farmsteads with raw material, which the latter worked into final products, that were then brought on the market by the entrepreneur. This already needed some investments and capital, since the raw products had to be bought, distributed, and sold only months later. In a succeeding step, handwork became substituted by machines and industrial processing. This required much more investment and capital. In the Ottoman Empire, only relatively few big and successful manufactures could emerge. The northern Greek village of Ambelakia became well-known, which temporarily turned into a little town in the late 18th century. The local cotton weaver produced a specially dyed yarn for the Habsburg weaving industry, which expanded rapidly in the years before 1800. The Aegean island of Chios began to concentrate on the production of silk canvas. Balkan caravan guides sold woolen stuffs, which their families produced during winter time. The biggest center of wool production was the Bulgarian city of Plovdiv, the entrepreneurs of which included the local peasant families as wool deliverers, spinners and weavers in textile production since the 17th century. The products from Plovdiv could achieve a favorable market position, because they produced cheap material for the low-income segment. After the bloody abolition of the Janissary units (→ Janissaries) since 1826, the local entrepreneurs were able to conclude attractive treaties with the government for the uniform equipment of the newly formed Ottoman army. Ankara specialized in the production of mohair yarn and fine clothes from that strand. It was spun by peasant women in the vicinity of the city, and dyed and finished in the city itself. In general, the Ottoman manufactures were confronted with big problems because of the increasing European imports and the increasing raw material prices, wherever European traders appeared already since the end of the 16th century. The price for raw silk for instance increased and the surplus margins in the silk industry-centre of Bursa (western Anatolia) decreased. The textile manufactures in Thessalonica prospered only until 1650. The English traders were able to bring relatively cheap textiles to the Ottoman market, because they bought cheap cotton in the Ottoman Levant and processed it in England. On the eve of the French revolution, Central European textile manufactures already bought three fourths of the Macedonian raw cotton harvest. The allegedly state-controlled and directed crafts guilds were made responsible by historiography for the only weakly developed craft production of the Ottoman Empire and the hardly developed entrepreneurial bourgeoisie. This argument might not be absolutely accurate, because the history of the guilds in the Ottoman Empire has not yet been sufficiently studied. In addition, guild organizations of the


Ottoman Empire are obviously not comparable to those of Western Europe. Slaves' labor must have provided Ottoman guilds with a significantly different structure. In Western Europe, industrialization happened outside of the guild organization (mining, ironworks, paper mills etc.). This could also have been the case for the Ottoman Empire; Egyptian textile production was increasingly conducted on the countryside and outside the urban guilds in the course of the 19th century. The Ottoman Empire suffered a lack of raw materials and infrastructure required for industrialization. Paper industry is a good example. In the Islamic area, paper was produced in small business enterprises. In Western Europe, however, since the 14th century, paper was produced on basis of the water-driven paper mill. The Ottoman Empire was forced to import paper from Europe, although paper had been produced in the Near East long before Western Europe. However, the Ottoman guild industry obviously provided little impulse for capitalistic production. The guilds – according to a widely spread argument – did not constitute autonomous organizations but were actually intermediary institutions between the state and the urban master craftsmen; insofar, they would not have constituted a pre-stage of civil-societal organization like in Western Europe. The Ottoman state would supervise the guilds especially in the bigger cities, where they were considered a branch of the administration. Also the sensible crafts were controlled by the state and prices were often fixed by the government. Under these circumstances, an autonomous commercial and industrial bourgeoisie would not emerge either. The guild masters assisted with the control of their guilds and guaranteed for the amount of tributes from its members. New research, however, questions the above-described interventionist measures. Provided that they had actually taken place, their roots were pre-Ottoman, which are reflected in the guilds' organization of Constantinople. The capital city was crucial for Byzantine economic life. The densely populated city had an enormous demand for goods of every kind. The government paid considerable attention to cheap supply of its population in order to avoid riots. It fixed the surplus margins of food (but also of other products). Grain prices were regulated as well, thus preventing the big fluctuation of prices. The government also controlled the guilds' activity. Competition within the guilds was permitted but supervision by the state administration prohibited that single craft masters could control whole branches. The guild members supported each other in emergency cases, controlled the attendance of new members and the training of apprentices. Access was not limited to masters but was also open to journeymen. The intensity of governmental control depended on the branch's importance for the state. Silk producers and saddlers for instance, were directly controlled by representatives of the government. The regulation should provide for fair commercial conditions, ensure the quality of the products, and protect consumers. Weights and measurements were also controlled by the government. The artificial hoarding of products was severely punished. Such rigid measures were usually not applied in other cities. The Ottoman crafts were possibly limited in their advancement through the regulation of their guilds. Scientists, however, have diverse opinions with regard to this question. Did regulation delay the development of the capitalistic-oriented mode of production? Did dirigisme gag a capital accumulating bourgeoisie? Not few researchers consider Islam a serious obstacle to profit-orientation. Islam And Capitalism The question whether Islam with its outspoken prohibition of interest was an obstacle to capitalistic economy has been heavily disputed. Therefore, it is not easily answered, although a fundamental religious obstacle is obviously not given. On the contrary, the Koran appreciates commercial activity, and Muhammad was a successful tradesman. There is also a relationship between Koranic scholarship and commercial activity. A high proportion of the early generation of Islamic scholars is rooted in the mercantile community. The


accumulation of wealth is generally considered as agreeable to God – at least, if something was refunded to society in form of pious donations. Islam basically did not prevent the emergence of a credit system. "Riba" – the Arabic term for usury and interest – is assessed very negatively by the Koran; however, Islamic law offers various possibilities to avoid the collection of interest. Despite its official non-existence, a tough network of unofficial granting of credit always existed. Ten to twenty percent interest was and still is taken, indirectly. This, for instance, was the case with commercial partnerships such as the "mudaraba" or "commenda", which were also widespread among Italian businessmen. This constitutes the partnership of classic Islam, in which an investor left his capital or goods to a contractor, who traded with it and paid back the capital. The surplus was divided according to a previously fixed key. Possible losses had to be covered by the capital owner. Because of the risks, these were limited businesses. Such ways out of the interest prohibition therefore only allowed for small businesses, which possibly were a potential obstacle to the emergence of an Islamic bourgeoisie and industrial capitalism. Early capitalism in Western Europe had various roots. A decisive impetus was given by North Italian bankers and tradesmen in late medieval age; in synergy with other European regions, instruments of finance were developed, which led to the emergence of a finance market. This was not so much the case in the areas under Islamic control, despite their extensive commercial networks. The Arab-Islamic fleet dominated the southern half of the Mediterranean, whereas the northern half was dominated by the Byzantine Empire. Despite the political tensions between the two worlds, Byzantine-Arab trade flourished. Since about the 8th century, however, the Byzantine Empire lost its position, and the Balearic Islands, Sicily, Sardinia, Corsica, Cyprus, and Crete became – at least temporarily – Arabic and bases for European trade. Trade with Asia was conducted on sea routes in the Indian Ocean and to as smaller extent on the traditional caravan routes, which regained importance with the rise of the Caliphate (→ Caliph) and the Tang dynasty in China (618-907). The most important West-East direction ran through Baghdad and then in three main routes to Central Asia, to the Chinese cities. Other routes proceeded from Inner Asia to the Volga River, where exchange with the Normans took place. The West-East routes were completed by North-South routes, for instance between the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf. Because of the great distances, the imminent inhospitality of the areas crossed, and the high costs for effective protection made the land route more expensive than the sea route. Protection expenses were sometimes higher than the immediate transport costs. Ottoman dominance did not change this basic constellation very much. Already in the Byzantine period, Pisa, Venetia, and Geneva became considerable rivals with strong commercial networks since the 11th century. However, by the end of the 15 th and beginning of the 16th centuries, the discovery of the sea routes to both Americas as well as to India and China by Spain and Portugal created a fundamentally new situation. Mediterranean trade remained important but the Mediterranean powers could not compete with the Atlantic powers any longer. Ottoman trade was particularly affected, since Portugal began to control the sea route to the Indian and Chinese markets. The situation was worsened by Russia, which, in 1774, enforced the opening of the Dardanelles and the Bosporus for commercial ships under its flag. These factors alone, however, cannot explain why in the Ottoman Empire commerce did not result in industrial capitalism and capital concentration like in Florence, Milan, or Augsburg, which were not situated at the Atlantic either. Apart from the fact that the Empire only had low access to lucrative raw materials, religiously motivated reasons might have constituted an obstacle to the emergence of a capitalistic financial market. The religious order not to establish business relations with non-Muslims might have been one reason; the already mentioned prohibition of interest, which could not be ignored completely, is another one. Greek, Jewish, or Armenian businessmen had no limitations of that kind.


This observation directs the view to the ethnic composition of commerce and banking in the Ottoman Empire. This sector, as far as it could develop, was clearly dominated by Greeks, Jews, and Armenians. They built the pillar of Ottoman economy almost exclusively, whereas the Ottoman Elite concentrated on army and administration. The differentiation between Muslims and non-Muslims was not identical with rulers and dominated religious communities because a limited number of non-Muslims was able to advance into the ruling class. The Greek patricians of Phanar, the Greek quarter at the Golden Horn, were traders, bankers, and governmental functionaries, and the high Orthodox clergy can be considered part of the Ottoman elite as well. Jews played an important role in commerce and banking in the 16 th century. Joseph Nasi (1520-1579) for instance came from Portugal and moved to Istanbul in 1554. He had excellent commercial and diplomatic relations to European countries and became one of the sultan's closest councilors. In 1566, he was appointed Duke of Naxos by the sultan and received the monopoly on tariff revenue and wine export of the island. Several Armenians were leading in the banking sector and took care of credits the Ottoman government needed for warfare. Since the Byzantine period, Thessalonica was the most important commercial center in the Balkans. In the early modern period, 25,000 of the 70,000 inhabitants were Sephardim (→ Sephardim). Since the early 17th century, Greeks dominated the commercial exchange between Thessalonica and the rest of the Empire, including the capital city. The Balkan trade with Central Europe, too, was under control of a rising Orthodox commercial bourgeoisie with its branches for instance in Vienna and Budapest. The late 18th and early 19th centuries were decisive for the formation of a group of tradesmen, which organized the international trade of the Empire. Non-Muslim tradesmen already enjoyed the protection of foreign powers and tax privileges. Muslim tradesmen played an inferior role in the commerce with Europe. Nevertheless, it is not true that the Ottoman long-distance trade was completely in the hand of ethnic minorities; since the late 16th and early 17th centuries, Ottoman Muslims regularly visited Venetia. Some of them even had their residence in the commercial metropolis of Venetia and acted as intermediates and interpreters. But they were exceptions, who proved the rule that Islam was basically no obstacle to the way into capitalism. The concrete example of the Ottoman Empire, however, demonstrates that the economic elite was overwhelmingly non-Muslim.

Failed Development Politics In the course of the second half of the 19th and at the beginning of the 20th centuries, the Ottoman governments as well as the elites of the newly independent Balkan states undertook energetic steps in order to catch up with the West, especially in the industrial sector, but the results were modest. In the second half of the 19th century, the population of the Balkan countries increased significantly (see Chapter 9). This, however, was not accompanied by an analogous economic growth. Bulgaria, after the liberation from Ottoman domination, dropped even behind its late-Ottoman level economically because of the decrease of international prices for agrarian products; a similar situation can be observed for Serbia. Bulgaria's agrarian productivity of the 1860s and 1870s was only achieved again in the 1920s. Serbia's productivity decrease was even more pronounced. In Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina too, productivity decreased until WWI and beyond. The non-agrarian sector was not able to balance this drop-back. The urban trade of the Balkan states was heavily struck by the loss of Ottoman markets. Because of the Muslim emigration and the weak urban migration, the Balkan states were not more urbanized on the eve of WWI than in the late Ottoman period. The urban demand therefore remained low. Textile manufactures were also heavily struck, which had prospered under the Ottomans. Wool production in the Rhodope


Mountains decreased by almost two thirds. Only in Bosnia, the Austrian modernization politics and the engagement of Austrian-Hungarian firms brought about a relatively successful industrialization – but only compared to Serbia and Bulgaria. Due to the loss of the Ottoman markets, the new Balkan states had to try to position their agricultural raw products - Serbia its pigs and plums, Greece its raisins, and Bulgaria and Romania their grain - on the Central European markets. This was difficult, since international competition was considerable. Moreover, an ever growing trade deficit was accumulated with Germany and Austria-Hungary, when the import of industrially processed goods was introduced. Quantitatively speaking, the German and Austro-Hungarian exports to the Balkan countries did not count much for the exporting countries: only about ten percent of the Habsburg exports went into the Balkan market in 1911. Caused by the international market and the omitted mechanization of agriculture, the overall economic situation hardly improved compared to the Ottoman period. Only in countries that became independent before 1914, the financial sector advanced towards Western European standards. Central Banks were established and national currencies issued, which were made internationally convertible. In the decades before WWI, the construction of railway networks was considered an absolute precondition for economic growth. The negative effect was that high investments were required and the state budgets became dependent on additional loans in order to cover the growing state expenditures. The initiative for construction of railway networks in Serbia and Bulgaria came from the Congress of Berlin in 1878, which obliged the two states to construct the still missing railway connections between Vienna and Istanbul on their territories by 1888. They preferred a higher budget deficit to foreign construction consortia in order to avoid dependency from other countries. The consequence was that the budgets of Bulgaria and Serbia but also of Greece came close to national bankruptcy, since they could not pay back their debts. The new national Central Banks hesitated to provide long-term credits and mortgage loans. This was particularly disadvantageous for the agrarian sector, which urgently needed investments. The same held true for the industrial sector, whose contribution to the gross national product was not even ten percent until WWI. European finance institutions were hardly interested in engaging themselves in the Balkans, except for the French and Czech. Foreign private investors were hardly interested in investments; there was little domestic demand and export chances were minimal. The governments were not able to use foreign loans for a politics of industrialization but had to use them for debt clearance and preferred investments in military equipment and the extension of bureaucracy. On the eve of the WWI, 20 to 30 percent of the national income was used for state expenditures – a significantly higher amount than in the states of Western Europe. The increasing state expenditures were mainly financed by increased indirect taxes. These taxes were mainly collected in cities; this reduced demand even further. Experts have registered only two economic mini-spurts – one before and one after WWI. Both were characterized by the endeavor to substitute imports with domestic industrial products. The main obstacle was the lacking capital. Since foreign engagement was too low, industrial growth became dependent on domestic capital such as re-invested profits or short-time credits from domestic banks. Economic policy in the 1920s and 1930s could hardly lead to economic growth. This particularly applied to Greece with an average growth of 5.7 percent (1929-1938), which was basically caused by the Greek refugees from Asia Minor in 1923, who contributed to the emergence of the entrepreneurial elite. In the 1930s, governments were experimenting with a mix consisting of protection tariffs and tax exemptions in order to enhance the willingness to invest domestic capital. In the first half of the 19 th century, the Ottoman guild organization was facing increasing problems because of the free market situation; the silk guilds suffered from the changing taste of the Empire's population toward Western clothing style. Around 1850, the famous mohair producers of Ankara had


disappeared. The reasons were that foreign traders increasingly bought pertinent raw material, which resulted in rising raw material prices also for domestic producers, who could not produce as cheaply as the foreign industrial producers. The Ottoman government reacted with consequent deregulation of markets and guilds. After an initial shock, several of the manufactures adapted well to the changing market conditions and some of them even achieved peak operational results at the beginning of the 20th century. The problem, however, was that they could hardly be turned or were not intended to be turned into industrial organizations. Between 1826 and 1870, Ottoman textile production was practically completely destroyed by foreign competition. Carpet- and allover production could be positioned well on the European market around 1900. The international competition did not constitute an absolute obstacle to the establishment of local fabrications. The century before 1914 can be considered a period of economic growth. Ottoman population in the Near Eastern provinces increased three times from 11-12 million to 32-33 million. Foreign trade with Europe increased significantly (ten times); the same held true for cultivated land as population increase was accompanied by increasing demand. Urban development of coastal cities was much better than that of the cities in the interior because of their higher commercial activity. The Ottoman Empire, too, relied on the construction of a railway network as an infrastructural motor of catch-up development. Whereas in 1850, 1357 km railway lines already existed in Austria-Hungary, there was still no railway infrastructure in the Ottoman Empire. In the second half of the 19 th century, however, 7500 km were constructed – a little less than in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, and Greece, with a total of about 8000 km. Contrary to the Balkan countries, the Ottoman Empire relied on foreign direct investments. Concessions for construction and operation were sold to foreign companies. The so-called Baghdad Railway became a key project. It was meant to connect the South-Iraq city of Basra (→ Basra) (with Konya, Adana, Mosul, Aleppo, and Baghdad as stations) and the Persian Gulf. In 1899, German investors won the concession for its construction. Routing, especially through the Taurus Mountains, was difficult. The construction works began parallel in the north and the south. At the beginning of WWI, single sections were linked to each other only by provisional narrow-gauge rails and wagons. The railway was finished by the British colonial power only in the 1920s and 1930s. In the course of the 20th and early 21st centuries, basically three models of a catch-up development were practiced: etatism, socialism and finally, since about 1990, free market economy. No one of these models was successful in introducing a catch-up development – except the oil producing states. Etatism The wars of 1912 to 1922/23 caused a population decrease by 20 percent in Turkey (within its present borders) and a decrease of the per-capita income by 40 percent. After WWI, the gross national product of the Ottoman Empire was 1200 USD, which was 29 percent of that of Western Europe and the USA, compared to.7500 USD (i.e. 30 percent of Western Europe and the USA) in 2005. Turkey therefore was not able to catch-up with the leading industrial nations during the last nine decades, despite a considerable structural change. In the 1920s, less than 25 percent of the overall population lived in cities with more than 5000 inhabitants, compared to 68 percent in 2005. In 1913, about 80 percent of the population worked in agriculture but in 2005, this rate dropped to only 34 percent; the share of industrial workers increased from 9 to 23 percent and of those in the service sector from 11 to 43 percent. The share of agriculture in the gross national product decreased from 55 to 11 percent, while that of industry grew from 13 to 26 percent and that


of the service sector from 34 to 64 percent. The former agrarian state turned into a service society yet not into an industrial society. With the outcomes of WWI and the de-colonialization wars, the young Turkish republic had lost the majority of its Greek and Armenian economic elite. The politics of a catch-up development of the founder of the republic and its first president, Ataturk (→ Ataturk), was therefore based on the creation of a Muslim economic bourgeoisie. As a motor for the foundation of a state-run enterprise sector, an import substituting industry was considered appropriate. This concept is called "etatism". Economic development should be based on independence from the West. In order to stimulate agriculture, agricultural taxes were reduced significantly in 1924, and an economy bank was founded, whose aim was to support private enterprises. This was done with the help of the only foreign loan Turkey accepted (from the Soviet Union). In 1934, the first five-year plan was implemented and support for the private sector reduced. However, the etatistic experiment had no socialist intentions. The establishment of a textile industry, which would process domestic cotton as well as exploit domestic raw materials (phosphate, cement, iron, paper, artificial silk, and sugar) should be supported. The second five-year plan (implemented in 1938) intended the foundation of new enterprises. However, the state's investments as well as the horrendously increasing number of state-employed people created a high budget deficit. Thirty-five percent of the budget was devoted to salaries. The Arab successor states of the Ottoman Empire pursued a similar strategy after the colonialist period. Everywhere in economy, the public sector was dominant. Around 1980, about half of the employees were working in the public sector in the broadest sense. The public sector was strongest developed in the oil exporting countries. The situation was similar in countries that intended or still intend the creation of an Arab socialism, and which were alien to foreign capital and private property: Egypt 1957-1974, Syria since 1963, Iraq from 1963 to the US-American military invasion in 2003, and the communist regime in South Yemen from 1969 to 1990. In these countries, the private sector was significantly cut and prices and salaries were controlled. Only the public sector was granted access to raw materials. In Egypt, the banking-, insurance- and international trade sectors were nationalized by President Nasser in 1961. Also the import of central goods was put under state control. The agricultural sector, however, remained private. The basic aims – industrialization and the fair distribution of incomes – however, were not achieved. In 1957, the first five-year plan for industrial development and in 1960 for economy in general was passed. After the country's military defeat of Israel in 1967, the loss of the oil fields on the Sinai Peninsula, and the close-down of the Suez Canal, a modification of President Nasser's economic policy became necessary. His successor Sadat began to cautiously pursue a more liberal policy. In 1953, Syria and Iraq became Baath governments (→ Baath Parties), which began to pursue a socialist policy. For Iraq, this was easier because of its oil fields. In 1964, all bank institutions and key industries were nationalized. In the first half of the 1970s, the wave of nationalization continued and already in 1978, 75 percent of the gross national product were made in the nationalized sector. In Syria, the share of nationalized industrial production was 75 percent already in 1965. In the 1970s, the number of employees in the nationalized sector doubled. The oil exporting states comprise the biggest nationalized sector. Saudi-Arabia possesses the largest oil reserves worldwide. Exploitation had already begun in 1938, and since 1944, oil has been exported by the "Arab-American Oil Company", which was owned by US-American oil companies until 1972. Since then, the nationalization of oil exploitation began. The income from oil exports provides a gross domestic product that is 16 times higher than that of Egypt. In 2008, with its gross social product of 12,510 USD per capita, the country was still far behind countries like Germany with 30,690 USD or Austria with 34,700 USD per capita. High oil incomes enable the country to construct and renew its infrastructure and to


play an important role in Arab politics. Only at the beginning of the 1960s, starting with oil exploitation and released into independency from Great Britain, the United Arab Emirates already belong to the wealthiest countries in the world and are the wealthiest country of the Near East, which is in the position to do without the collection of direct taxes. Socialism Yugoslavia, Albania, Bulgaria, and Romania, as well as the countries of Eastern- and Central Eastern Europe were integrated into the Soviet hemisphere by the end of WWII. The communist-led partisans of Yugoslavia and Albania had freed themselves from the German and Italian occupiers; in Romania and Bulgaria, the Red Army marched in and overthrew the "bourgeois" governments. Yugoslavia left the Soviet bloc in 1948, after disputes between Tito and Stalin about the true way into socialism and pursued an independent development, which was massively supported by the USA. Once in power, the communist parties began to realize very ambitious economic plans. They did not only try to catch up with the capitalistic West, but even tried to get ahead of it. The vehicles were a state-directed economy that undermined the principles of the market, and the decoupling from the capitalistic West. Economy was completely nationalized including the biggest part of agriculture. Before WWII, about 80 percent of the population still worked in agriculture. The realization of five-year plans aimed at a rapid industrialization and urbanization. The traditional agrarian societies were actually turned into industrial societies within short time – although under the condition of great deprivation to the people, which were also called to work for free for the advancement of a socialist society. Within the three decades from the 1950s to the 1970s, urban population doubled from about 20 percent to about half of the total population. The proportion of people working in agriculture decreased to one quarter to one fifth of the employees, and the proportion of industrial workers increased from little more than zero to about fifty percent of the population, while the service sector still remained relatively underdeveloped. Contrary to the service societies of the Near East (including Greece), the socialist countries developed into considerable industrial societies. The price that had to be paid for the socio-economic transformation, however, was the renouncement of consume and political repression. Only Yugoslavia went a different way since the early 1960s by opening its borders for labor migration to capitalistic countries. Compared to the other socialist countries, many Yugoslav families achieved fair prosperity through labor migration. Yugoslavia was the most prosperous country among its socialist neighbors. Although the country suffered a considerable decrease of economic prosperity in the 1980s, it was not so much the economic performance that let the country drift apart but the emerging ethno-nationalistic tensions. In the other three socialist countries, it was primarily the renouncement of consume that caused the fall of the communist parties. This was the case especially in Romania, which had slipped into high debts with western loan organizations for prestige projects and intended to pay back its debts as fast as possible in the 1980s in order to avoid permanent dependence. Albania had spoiled its chances both with the Soviet Union and with China and became politically and economically increasingly isolated. Therefore, the country was left alone and could not offer any perspectives to its desperate population. Free Market Economy Between 1989 and 1991, the communist parties in the four socialist countries had to pass over power to political forces that had been peripheralized for several decades. What followed was a long-lasting transformation process from a one-party government to modern parliamentary democracies and from command economy to free market economy. In the case of the former Yugoslavia, this transformation was


severed by the breakdown of the state and the following "brother wars". In Romania and Bulgaria, although member states of the European Union since 2007, numerous cases of large-style corruption and economic criminality, in which even high ranking representatives of the states are involved, demonstrate that even in those countries, the transformation process is not yet complete. The collapsed socialist development model seems to have been temporarily the last one that tried to overcome the economically weak structures inherited from the Ottoman Empire. The post-socialist state is exposed to the forces of neo-liberalism and has practically nothing to share with its citizens. Similar to the other post-Ottoman countries – except for the oil exploiting ones – they lack capital for self-generating and sustaining economic development. After the buy-out, donation, and close-down of unprofitable state-owned fabrics, the post-socialist states are dependent on foreign investments. They are exposed to the pressure to create conditions for investments – for instance, in the sense of tax exemption and low wages – to make themselves competitive vis-à-vis the competitors from South East Asia and other regions in the world. The Rich And The Poor Although the explanatory power of the gross social product is not very high, it offers a fair instrument of comparison that helps to localize wealth and poverty. Table 2 pools the countries of the Balkans and the Near East to regions in order to make comparison easier and to help visualize several obvious trends. The only post-Ottoman countries that are successful in catching up economically are the oil exploiting countries. This catch-up development was achieved by the worldwide demand for oil and their rich oil depots. Without the "black gold", these countries probably would have a gross social product similar to Yemen's, which, because of its natural conditions, was estimated wealthier than the rest of the Arab Peninsula before the oil boom. Two thirds of the worldwide oil resources are located in the Near East. Due to the Asian competition, the Arabian share in world trade decreased from 9 percent (1980) to 1.5 percent. Interestingly enough, the other successor states of the Ottoman Empire are in about the same range. This allows for the conclusion that no form of catch-up development was particularly successful or unsuccessful. After about two decades, the former communist countries have again reached the economic productivity of the late communist era or even exceeded it. The below-average figures for Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia-Herzegovina can be explained by the wars they were involved in. Greece's above-average data can be put down to the country's three-decade-long EU membership; those of the Republic of Cyprus by the significant assistance of Greece, which supported the Greek part of the island for decades. Also, data of countries exporting little or no oil show some abnormalities. Lebanon still suffers from its civil war (1975 to 1980), and the Palestine populations in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip from the long-lasting wars with Israel. Among the oil exploiting countries, Iraq's economic situation is still extremely bad, due to the two Gulf Wars 1980/88 and 1990/91, as well as the war with the USA and its consequences since 2003. Table 2: Gross Social Product per capita in USD of the Balkans and the Near East Countries Balkan Countries Serbia Bosnia-Herzegovina Albania Montenegro 1,910 5,600 5,700 3,800 (2005)


Bulgaria Romania Macedonia Greece Republic of Cyprus

10,700 9,100 2,830 24,000 23,000

Near East (little or no oil exploitation) Turkey Jordan Syria Lebanon Egypt Israel Gaza-Strip and West Bank Yemen 9,100 5,100 4,100 5,900 4,200 26,800 1,500 (2003) 1,000

Near East (oil exploitation) Iraq Saudi-Arabia United Arab Emirates Kuwait Bahrain Oman Qatar 1,900 13,800 49,700 23,100 25,600 14,400 29,800

Austria Germany USA

34,700 31,900 43,800


In summary, we have to conclude that the exclusion of the non-Muslim economic elites from the political leadership of the Ottoman Empire was of disadvantage for both the Ottoman Empire and its successor states in the long run. This politics of confessional segregation had advantages and disadvantages for all parts; however, for the economic development of the Empire, it was a disadvantage. An exact analysis of the emerging developmental backlash for the Ottoman Empire – despite many studies related to this topic – is still lacking. The stagnation of the economic sector proves to be prevailing. A region that seemed to be equal to North West Europe around 1500, still constitutes an economic periphery (except for the oil producing countries) that cannot supply its population sufficiently. All models of catch-up development practiced until now – etatism, socialism, and free market economy – have so far proven to be unsuccessful.

Unit 8: City States, Cities, and Metropolises
There is hardly another region in the world that comprises a similar number of cities, which were of equally grandiose historical importance, as Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor). Jericho (→ Jericho) – the first city-like settlement surrounded by a defense wall; Uruk (→ Uruk) – the presumably oldest city in world history; Babylon (→ Babylonia) – the location of the tower of Babel and the Hanging Gardens; Alexandria (→ Alexandria) – for centuries an outstanding center of sciences; Ugarit (→ Ugarit) – the city with an advanced alphabet, only lacking vocals; Jerusalem – the holy place of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Mecca – the city of the Prophet; Athens – the representative of the classical Greek world, and finally Constantinople – the medieval metropolis. There is almost no region in the world whose history has been shaped so significantly by its cities. And today? Not one city in the region has the character of a world city. No wonder, since world cities are an echo of a high concentration of power. Because of the population increase in the second half of the 20 th century, a growing number of big cities had become metropolises. The process of metropolization began in London, the capital city of the first worldwide empire in the history of mankind. As the capital city of the wealthiest and economically-industrially best developed country, with its 1,097 million inhabitants (1801), London became the first metropolis and world city of modern age. About the middle of the 19th century, Paris joined; in the second half of the 19th century New York, Tokyo, Vienna, and Berlin followed. Around 1990, the number of metropolises increased to about 250 and therefore constitutes a worldwide phenomenon. Megacities counting more than five million inhabitants are not yet a worldwide phenomenon. Their number increased from four (Tokyo, New York, London, and Paris) in about 1940, to 36 in about 1990 (most of them in the USA, China, and India). Around 1990, every second citizen already lived in a megacity or metropolis in South Korea and Japan; in China only every twentieth. World cities or global cities, however, cannot be measured with demographic data. They are headquarters of the most important transnational concerns, concentrations of the international capital and pivotal moments of world traffic. Contrary to the nationally oriented megacities, they function as motors of internationalization and globalization. They are situated in Northern America, Western Europe as well as in Eastern and South Eastern Asia including the Asian Pacific region, which concentrates the most considerable economic dynamics. Only four cities are considered "world cities with leadership tasks": Tokyo, London, New York, and Paris. The megacities of the South are big in terms of inhabitants and economic potential and are therefore important, but have not yet achieved the rank of world cities, since they are not (yet) exposed to the globalization process. These contemporary observations remind us of the early beginnings of the city and urban culture; this will be addressed in the first section of this chapter. The second


one will discuss the antique polis; the third one the relations between the state and the city. The fourth section will provide a short introduction to the largest European city for centuries – Constantinople/Istanbul. The fifth section, finally, will address several issues related to the field of city and modernity. The Oldest Cities The emergence of cities has to be seen in the context of the intensification of power and dominance. They resulted in the first cities, and with the changing character of cities, the character of power and dominance changed as well. On the other hand, every new system of dominance created new city types and changed the functions of city centers; the old elites were substituted by new ones. This was the case with Uruk (→ Uruk) as well as with Tokyo, New York, or Graz. What constituted a city in early history is hard to define. More than just general criteria, which characterized an agglomeration of houses as a city cannot be given: * large and dense population; * separation of a considerable number of people from original production; * labor division within the community; * existence of a defense wall; * central functions such as dominating-, administrative, commercial, and military pivot, as well as cultic centrality. A city had to develop a certain social and economic level, which enabled it to achieve a surplus for the exchange of goods and to control a territory larger than within its own boundaries, since this control was important for the supply of its population. An urban community could afford to include population strata not involved in original production. In this way, they became the basis for the development of culture and art, as well as of capacities such as writing, calculating, measuring, and science. Compared to these criteria, Jericho (→ Jericho) and Chatal Huyuk (→ Chatal Huyuk) cannot be considered origins of urban culture. Although both settlements had existed for several millennia, they could not provide impulses for centrality and domination. Moreover, the urban way of life could not be established permanently in their regions. Both settlements were highly concentrated and emerged in regions with permanent rainfall – in the highlands of the Levant and South Anatolia. Jericho is the most famous example. Here, on the periphery of the Dead Sea, settlement strata of the period between 8000 and 6000 were discovered. Its area of four hectares was surrounded by a wall; about 800 people lived here in mud brick houses. The village emerged even before people could make systematic use of domesticated animals and plants. Their pots and instruments were still made of stone; raw material was not yet imported. Division of labor has not yet developed and society was not yet stratified. Chronologically next comes the settlement of Catal Hüyük, which emerged in the late 7th/early 6th millennium and was situated in the Plain of Konya. The settled area was about 13 ha and comprised about 3000 people. Agriculture did not yet offer a reliable supply basis here either. Labor division and specialization were already developed but there are no indications of a market function nor administrative and priesterly ones; market function obviously existed because of obsidian (→ obsidian) winning in the vicinity. The dissolution of the settlement around 5000 might have been caused by the overuse of the soils in the course of millennia. The decisive push for the emergence of urbanization was missing. How did isolated settlements transform into cities? This has to be seen in the context of the advancement that was achieved with the domestication of animals and the cultivation of plants. The early mixed economy based on fishing, hunting, and gathering was abandoned. Food production increased and the methods of vegetable conservation improved. Settlements could therefore be permanently inhabited.


Their hinterland did not need to be as large as before. The settlements, however, were still far from each other and communication on a daily basis was not possible. This did not exclude exchange relations. It can be assumed that the settlements' locations changed position from higher altitudes to the plains. The inclusion into trans-regional commercial networks as well as the immigration of significant population from the countryside was probably decisive for the transformation of a village into a city. In about 4000, several settlements advanced to little cities with between 4000 and 5000 inhabitants. First cities existed since about 3500. The biggest city of that time was Uruk (→ Uruk) with more than 10,000 inhabitants; the place had been permanently settled for about 4500 years. By 2700, its population increased to about 50,000 and its area covered 400 ha. The immigrating population constituted a labor force reservoir, which allowed the urban population to produce increasingly complex objects; the division of labor was broad. Religious and administrative centrality was given; the sanctuary had monumental dimensions already in the 4th millennium. The city was surrounded by a defense wall consisting of bricks up to seven m high, four to five m thick and more than nine km long. The Accadian Gilgamesh-Epos (→ Accadia, → Gilgamesh) honored it as Gilgamesh's work. He was king of Uruk at the beginning of the 3 rd millennium, and he was allegedly in charge for 123 years. Another early city, Ur (→ Ur), situated at the lower course of the Euphrates, played an important commercial role. Until the 2nd millennium, the city was the most important import harbor for goods passing the Persian Gulf from India. Its location close to the sea might have been decisive for early urban development. Documents in cuneiform writing (→ cuneiform) from about 2700 report economic proceedings: income, expenditures, inventory lists, and field registers. This documentation was probably made for the royal household. The documents found in royal graves are also very informative; they are a little younger because they witness an incredible display of splendor: pottery, seals, furniture with inlaid work, music instruments, silver, and gold. The first cities emerged at the watersides of the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers in the 4 th millennium. What was the reason for their emergence at that time? Egypt, due to the regular inundation of the Nile and the stable climate seems to be more predestined than Mesopotamia with its dry periods, incalculable inundations and flood waves. There are no explicit explanations at hand. Complex processes must have been responsible for this tendency: population increase, increase of agricultural earnings, deepening of social stratification, coordination of irrigation and inundation protection programs as well as organized worship of deities are just a few possible explanations. Although most of the inhabitants were peasants, who moved to their fields on a daily basis, an initial social stratification becomes visible: writers, metal workers, stonecutters, sculptors, potters, weavers, bakers, and brewers were differentiated in the documents. In the middle of the 3rd millennium, four fifths of the Accad (→ Accadia) and Sumer (→ Sumerians) regions' population may have lived in urban centers with settled areas of at least 40 ha. Commerce cannot have been the single cause for the emergence of the earliest cities but only an important secondary contribution to their advancement, because Mesopotamia produced only agrarian products and their derivates. The economic basis of Mesopotamia was its agriculture, the considerable surplus of which suggested commercial exchange with precious metals and minerals. Kish (→ Kish) was the first city, which, in the middle of the 3rd millennium, established an impressive palace building. Temple and palace were already separated and the palace was considerably bigger than the temple, which indicates the shift of power from the religious to the secular dignitaries. Originally, the highest temple priest must have been also the city's head. The increasing obligations of the head might have led to a separation into two offices. Apart from that, there was no institution nor social group with special rights.


Ururk, Ur, and Kish – these Mesopotamian settlements fulfilled the most important criteria of early cities: they were urban centers in demographical, edificial, political-administrative, and cultural respect, as well as in their economic and social functions. What they were lacking in comparison to the Greek polis (→ polis) and the West European city of the medieval and modern age was the autonomous administration of their citizens. The emergence of the Accadian Empire (→ Accadia) caused a shift of royal power from Lower to Upper Mesopotamia and created the idea of a universal monarchy. The territory of the city-state was no longer in the conceptional focus. Therefore, the position of the city changed; it became a subordinate administrative unit of an empire. The city's independence vanished; the emperor appointed the city's administrative body, the most important duty of which was jurisdiction in the name of the monarch. Civil servants of the central power and priests constituted the social elite, commercial and industrial quarters became more diversified. In Syria, Palestine, and Asia Minor, comparable cities emerged only about one millennium later on the basis of favorable harbors, wealth of timber, fertile plains, and the sea trade. Between 2000 and 1500, the first cities emerged here - the present-day city of Ugarit (→ Ugarit), located in 1.5 km distance from the sea, is a good example. In the middle of the 15th century, it became an Egyptian sea base. The city dominated a territory of 3000 to 3500 km² with about 200 villages and 20,000 to 25,000 people in its vicinity. It was one of the most important commercial stations between Asia and the Mediterranean. Inhabitants imported raw copper from Cyprus, processed it and exported the final products. They already knew interests and credits. These Canaanit-Phoenician cities (→ Canaan, → Phoenicians) of the Levant constituted a new type: the commercial city. Their development was shaped by commerce, crafts, and traffic-strategic position. Both Israeli capitals in the hinterland – Jerusalem and Samaria (→ Samaria) – also contributed to the region's urbanization. In Anatolia, urban development began with Hattusha (→ Hattusha), which was destroyed by the Hittites (→ Hittites) at the end of the 18th century and reconstructed as residence of the Hittite kings toward the end of the 16th century. In the Balkans and on Crete, the first villages emerged in the 7th/6th millennium – in the fertile area of Thessaly villages with defense walls around 5000, and in Knossos. In the Bronze Age, the political focus was shifted from North to South Greece, the Aegean basin, and to Crete. Since about 2500, the number of villages increased in relation to the invention of viticulture, olive culture, and metal processing. Continental Greece lost importance since about 2000 BC, whereas on Crete, between 2000 and 1450 cities probably emerged – but there is no certainty as only palaces have been excavated so far. The Ancient Polis The further development of the city can be observed in Greece. All important city-states emerged in the period between 800 and 500. They concentrated around an acropolis, a fortified castle hill, where people could find protection in the case of wars; initially, they were controlled by kings and aristocratic oligarchs. The polis should constitute the basic political unit until Alexander the Great (→ Alexander the Great) established his empire in the 4th century. The affirmation of the city-state went hand in hand with political stability and provided for longer periods of peace than before. In the course of the 8 th century for instance, the population of the Athenian city-state, which comprised the whole territory of Attica, increased six times. It was probably due to this remarkable demographic increase that subsidiary cities in the Black Sea and the Mediterranean areas were founded. The first colonies were established by Ionic poleis (→ polis) of Asia Minor; they were distributed over the entire Mediterranean and Black Sea region. Among them were for instance Corfu, Naples, Marseille, Nice, Odessa, and Trabzon. Similar to the South Mesopotamian Ur (→


Ur), most of the Greek city-states were situated close to the sea. This was obviously decisive for this type of city and its form of organization. In the classical period, a colorful mosaic of about 500 to 700 smaller and larger poleis emerged. The polis (→ polis) can be defined as a self-governing, autonomous community of citizens with a fairly defined territory; it represented a political unit, which could conclude federations with other cities and maintain political relations and was not dominated by a superior power. The term city-state is insofar misleading as even a rural settlement could become center of a polis. "Polis" could therefore even be only the center of a community such as the acro-"polis". A concurrent term is "asty". It signifies the center of a polis. In Athens, asty meant an urban settlement contrary to the countryside ("agros"); asty therefore signaled urbanity. Only in this way, a large territory with a center and a surrounding agrarian area as supply basis could emerge. The Greek territory of the 5th/4th century cannot be considered as thoroughly urbanized. The majority of citizens of an ancient city were landowners – regardless of whether they were active peasants as such or their economic focus was concentrated on a domain. In that respect, many cities were completely agrarian, which means that cultivable land was the only source of their revenues. Cities gained more importance, the economic basis of which constituted of a mix of agriculture, crafts, and commerce. Athens is a typical example. The city was not so much a center of production but rather of consumption. The level of consumption achieved a fantastic amount. From time to time, the administration attempted to cut abundance. The city's ability to take care of food supply, the supply of slaves, and the import of precious metals and other demanded goods was basically dependent on four variables: the amount of agrarian production, the existence of any special resources (such as silver mines, in the case of Athens), the capacity to deliver highly demanded products such as special sorts of wine or oil fruits, and finally, the amount of tenant treaties, taxes, and tributes, which could be demanded from subjects or clientele states. The origins of the polis (→ polis) are not clear; explicit indications of their existence date from the second half of the 7th century. The community of equal male citizens and the hoplite army (→ hoplites) as an army of citizens were the polis' essential social elements. The origins of the political organization of the polis are presumably to be found in the military sphere – in the right of the citizen-soldier to accept or to refuse their commanders. This principle was then successively adapted to many spheres, except for the religious one. The direct, equal, or gradual participation of the citizen in the political life of the polis (→ polis) was the basis of the "demokratia" – the direct rule of the people. The basic institutions such as the general assembly of the citizens, a governing council and the executive body (magistrate) were probably established in all poleis (→ polis). Athens, Corinth, and Argos doubtlessly had urban character. Commerce and crafts, as well as their function as center constituted the basis of their urban character. Athens may have emerged from villages in the vicinity of the acropolis as urban center since the 6th century. The agora – the market – in its function as a location for assemblies, was equipped with public buildings in the middle of this century and with representative buildings in the course of the 5th century. The city may have comprised up to 50,000 inhabitants in the 5th century. Several specific elements contributed to the remarkable rise of Athens to the biggest city and most important city-state in the Aegean. Among the decisive factors were, for instance, the silver mines in the Laureion Mountains, which were exploited since the 6th and beginning of the 5th century; the vicinity of an excellent harbor (Piraeus), which had central function in the Aegean trade; the city's dominance attracted loots and slaves; but also a large number of foreigners, who had to engage in trade and crafts. They could neither achieve the status of citizens nor that of landowners, and constituted about one-fifth of the urban population. The secret of the polis' success was its autonomy and an administration conducted by the citizens themselves. They could easily identify with the city and took over responsibility for the common welfare. The


idea of advantages of a city's autonomy got lost in the Hellenistic (→ Hellenism) and Roman period and was reinvented in Western Europe as a principle of order since about the 11th century. City And State In the course of the Hellenistic period (→ Hellenism), the end of autonomous cities in the Near East came. They became progressively subdued to a superior power of a higher political level. The city lost its freedom of action, when it was absorbed into territorial states. In the Hellenistic period, citizens, magistrates, and councils continued with legislation, jurisdiction, and administration. However, they were not allowed to continue with independent external relations. The independent polis became a community of citizens, which was forced to pay taxes to the rulers in the form of "voluntary" donations, in order to preserve the appearance of independency. By conquering the Eastern Mediterranean area since the 2nd century BC, the Roman Empire met with a dense network of cities. At the beginning, the Roman administration was not yet thoroughly structured in a centralistic way from the top; the centralistic administration hierarchy reached only as far as the level of the provincial governor; the cities were obliged to collect taxes, draw recruits, keep the post system upright and repair roads and bridges. The social and cultural bond to the central administration was secured by awarding individual and communal citizenship. But this was not the end of urban planning. The Egyptian Alexandria (→ Alexandria) became the classic example of Hellenistic urban planning (→ Hellenism): along 30 m broad boulevards, colonnades were constructed, which were illuminated with torches during the night. An underground network of canals transported water from the Nile to the houses after it was cleaned in cisterns. In addition, parks, theaters, sport arenas, a huge hippodrome, temples for various religions, and an impressive gymnasium were constructed. In the course of the Roman period, many new colonies were founded – partly on the place of destroyed cities such as Jerusalem and Corinth, partly in far remote border areas of Anatolia. The aim was the militarily stabilization of the conquered regions. The situation in the Balkans was similar, where the newly found colonies should protect the Danube border. Singidunum (Belgrade), for instance, situated at the junction of Save and Danube was one of them. Compared to the already existing poleis (→ polis), the number of colonies was low in the East. The economic prosperity of this period contributed essentially to the intensification of the Roman Empire's urbanization.. Impressive construction projects (theaters, aqueducts, gymnasia, hippodromes, road surfaces, and drainages) were initiated. Urban population increased as well as the standard of living of the population, and hygienic conditions improved. However, prosperity and the level of urbanization of the first two centuries AD could not be kept upright any longer. The status of the cities changed fundamentally in the course of the 3rd and 4th centuries. Still until the 3rd century AD, the cities were allowed to issue their own currencies and make decisions. Autonomous jurisdiction was already substituted by that of the Roman governor. Now, the remaining autonomy vanished rapidly. Administration increasingly acted in the name of the emperor and became firmly integrated into the imperial administration. The emperor appointed curators, whose duty was the control of the cities' financial conduct. In the centuries to come, the situation should change only slightly even under changing systems of rule, until the decline of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. During the Byzantine era, the level of urbanization in the interior decreased significantly; former Anatolian cities shrank to fortressed settlements. The Mongolian (→ Mongols) conquests in the first half of the 13th century reduced the population further. In the early 16th century, Bursa – the most important Anatolian city of that time – presumably did not have more than 36,000 inhabitants. By the end of the century, the number might have been 70,000. The Eastern Mediterranean cities, however, grew between the


6th and the 8th centuries. Before the enormous plague epidemics in the middle of the 6 th century, Constantinople had about 400,000, Antiochia (→ Antiochia) about 200,000, and Thessalonica about 100,000 inhabitants. In the Islamic-Arab areas, urban culture experienced an enormous upswing between about the 7 th and the 15th centuries. In contrast to Western Europe, where the autonomous community of citizens became the roots for a pronounced economic ideology as the basis for the emerging capitalistic mode of production, the Muslim city lacked autonomy. Although the Islamic city was the center of religious, cultural, and commercial life, nomadic traditions, Islamic Law, as well as the principals of the political-militarily administration undermined the emancipation from the central administration and the establishment of autonomous, self-administrating institutions. A characteristic Islamic city type emerged, the formation of which came to conclusion only approximately in the 11th century. New economic and juridical transformations, as well as transformations of the social structure were mainly responsible for this tendency. The Islamic model of the city was characterized by several features. (1) The traditional Greek urban elites weakened by emigration and expropriation of land and lost importance. Whereas the ancient city was primarily an administrative center, now tradesmen and craftsmen moved to the foreground and became motors of urban development. Under the Abbasids (→ Abbasids), most of the legal experts, judges, and other functionaries of the city came from these strata. The Arab conquest did not introduce decay but a reorganization of the city, accompanied by advancement. The number of new cities, however, was lower than that of those with continuity from ancient times. (2) Public space was devaluated - contrary to late antiquity, theaters and sport arenas were no longer constructed. Mosques and closed bathes represented the public space. Houses and their gardens were protected by walls since privacy was highly appreciated in the Islamic world. (3) The regularity of ancient cities – observed by urban administration and governmental control – had no priority any longer and was substituted by private construction initiatives. Whereas according to Roman law, the construction of private buildings on public land was prohibited, this was not the case with Islamic law. The only construction regulation was derived from Muhammad's order, according to which the streets may not be broader than seven feet and houses not higher than one floor. In addition, the changing focus from cart to camel transport is the reason for the narrow entanglement of streets, which is still characteristic for many city centers; as long as two loaded camels were able to pass, one could count on a building permit. (4) The social composition of the urban population was obviously more heterogeneous compared to cities in Western Europe, India, and China. Already the early garrison cities did not only comprise quarters for different tribal populations but also for Christians, Jews, Turks, Persians, and Indians. The city was like a mosaic, separated into ethnic, religious, and administrative quarters. Besides the city-wall, which offered protection against enemies, the city was also divided by walls internally, which separated the quarters in order to avoid conflicts. (5) The bazaar in the city center was of high importance for commerce and communication. The open market place had a long Greek (agora) and Roman (forum) tradition that was kept upright. The bazaar (turk.) or suq (arab.) was a central element of urban development. It was the shopping- and crafts center as well as the meeting point for commercial and credit activities. It frequently consisted of a conglomerate of labyrinthine streets, which could be covered in order to provide heat protection in the summer and shelter from rain in the winter. Each street specialized in certain products and activities: spices, cotton, silk, leather, metal, jewels, perfume, or money lending. In the peripheral quarters, caravansaries (→ caravansary) and storage houses for transit commerce were usually at disposal.


The economic advancement of the Abbasid period was accompanied by population increase. At the peak of its rise, the capital Baghdad comprised an area of almost 7000 ha and 300,000 inhabitants. After the Mongol invasion (→ Mongols), the city was almost completely depopulated at around 1200. Basra (→ Basra) had a population between 200,000 and 600,000. Many cities had about 100,000 inhabitants; Aleppo and Damascus between 50,000 and 100,000, in the 15th century. The Ottoman domination did not change the model of the Islamic city. However, on the Balkan Peninsula and in Anatolia, the conquerors met longer Byzantine urban traditions. In the interior, ancient urban development along the Danube was interrupted by the Slavic-Avar conquests since the 6 th century. The Adriatic cities with ancient roots enjoyed increasing autonomy since Byzantine domination was only nominal. Venetian dominance of the Eastern Adriatic coast since the early 13th century did not change the situation either. Aristocratic self-administration was reorganized according the Venetian pattern. Dubrovnik/Ragusa could preserve its independence as a city-state until its submission to France in the Napoleonic wars in 1809. The Ottoman Empire confirmed the privileges of cities, which had capitulated voluntarily such as the northern Greek Ioannina for instance, in 1430. The city was even exempt from "boys' selection" and enjoyed confessional freedom. The Ottomans founded new cities mainly in regions, which were hardly included in the city network – in the Western and Central Balkans as well as on the left waterside of the Danube. In general, Ottoman dominance resulted in the reduction of autonomous rights and dependency on the central administration since the 16th century. The public, religious, and legal organs were nominated by the state. The increasing weakness of the central administration since the 18th century, however, offered the local and regional notables the opportunity to regain autonomous rights. Islam was by far no longer a nomadic culture but had changed into a primarily urban one. This is proven by the foundations of numerous cities and the population increase of several cities. Between 1840 and 1890, Beirut's population increased from about 10,000 to more than 100,000, that of Izmir from 110,000 to 200,000, and that of Istanbul from 400,000 to 900,000. The city at the Bosporus, which was the largest European city until the rise of London around 1800, deserves specific attention. Constantinople – Istanbul The present-day urban area basically emerged from two settlement cores: one from the Phoenician period (→ Phoenicians), which was located on the Asian side and was founded still before 700; the second one was founded by Greeks around 660 BC at the location of the Saray (→ Topkapi Saray) at the gate of the Golden Horn. In 146, both were subdued to the Roman Empire. The city at the Golden Horn was not larger than 0.7 km². Finally, strategic considerations in late Roman period led to the upgrading of Constantinople to the second center of the Empire. Under Emperor Augustus (27 BC-14 AD), the Roman army consisted of about 150,000 soldiers, who were divided into 28-30 legions. They were stationed at the most vulnerable zones of the Empire: between four and eight troops were positioned at the Rhine River, compared to about one third of the legions at the Danube River. More than half of the army was stationed along the Danube-Euphrates axis. Because of this shift of emphasis, Rome became questionable as a command central. Therefore, under Emperor Constantine (306-337), the Greek city hitherto called Byzantium was extended to the second center of the Empire on an area of about six km² in the years from 324 to 330; since Emperor Theodosios I (379-395), the city functioned permanently as imperial seat. After the western areas of the Roman Empire finally had come under domination of Germanic peoples in 476, the city became the sole center of the Empire – although strongly depleted –, which still stretched over three continents.


There are no exact data about the number of inhabitants, but experts estimate it to be about 400,000 in the 6th century – before the horrendous epidemic plague in the middle of this century; after that, the number was about 40,000 to 70,000 and increased only in the 12th century to an estimated 400,000 (compared to Paris with about 100,000 inhabitants). The figure of about one million inhabitants is exaggerated. The supply of the metropolis with fresh vegetables on a daily basis must have been a difficult logistical problem. The basic food was bread – it was foreseen for every meal –, oil, cheese as well as vegetables, while eggs, fish, and meat were less important. In the vicinity of the city, specialized horticulture was conducted. Fresh products were transported to the market every day. An area of about 12 to 15 km² of gardens within a distance of two hours was needed for the city's food supply. Until the Arabian conquest of Egypt in 642, the city was basically supplied with grain from the Nile region; then with grain from the Black Sea region and the Thracian hinterland. Fresh water supply was provided by an aqueduct, which was spring-fed at about 120 km distance. For the last year of its existence, the Byzantine Empire was no longer worthy of its label as empire, since it consisted only of the capital and its vicinity. In the year of its conquest, its population had already shrunk to 50,000-60,000. The conqueror-sultan Mehmed (1444-1446, 1451-1481) declared the Byzantine metropolis capital of his three-continental empire. A big reconstruction program should provide the city with new impulses after its siege and three days of plunder. The surviving Greek inhabitants were given a fair period of time, within which they could regain their former apartments and houses. In addition, Muslim tradesmen from Bursa, Konya, and other Anatolian cities were encouraged to settle in Istanbul. They were provided with land, houses, and tax privileges. Numerous villages inhabited by slaves, prisoners, and displaced persons from the Balkans emerged in the city's vicinity. Mosques with enclosed schools, libraries, soup kitchens, and fountains became the cores of the newly founded quarters. The most significant foundations were initiated by the conqueror-sultan; he founded for instance the Mehmedye-Mosque with eight medresses (Koran schools) arranged in two lines, where the elites of judges and Koran scholars were to be trained. Between 1453 and 1481, 209 mosques, 24 schools, and 32 public baths were founded. In 1478, the city consisted of about 9000 Muslim, 3100 Greek, 1650 Jewish, 1000 Armenian and Roma houses; 60 percent of the city's population were therefore Muslim, 20 percent Christian, and 10 percent Jewish. In the course of the subsequent century, the population increased to more than 700,000 and was therefore twice as big as that of the biggest European cities. At the eve of both Balkan Wars (1912/13), the proportion of foreigners was about 15 percent of the total population of about one million; in addition, there was a 30 percent Greek- and a 15 percent Armenian and Jewish population. The massive action of the Ottoman administration against the Armenian population in the time of WWI, which began in the spring of 1915, reached its first peak in Istanbul. Its elite was confined, displaced into the interior of the country and killed for the most part. In the course of WWI, the population increased temporarily to more than one million; in 1927, it decreased to about 700,000, after the newly founded Republic of Turkey had moved its capital to Ankara. In the late Ottoman period, the city was clearly divided along ethnic lines: Muslims lived overwhelmingly within the old city walls. Foreigners and newly-rich Greeks, however, preferred the fashionable quarter of Pera, which is nowadays called Beyoglu. The Greeks of Istanbul were – as far as they could prove their residency in the city – exempt from the Greek-Turkish population exchange of 1923 (see Chapter 16); their ownership rights in religious foundations, however, diminished and their schools were strictlyregulated and controlled. After the Greek-Turkish conflict escalated once more on Cyprus and a bomb attack on the Thessalonian Republic's founder's birth house was conducted, massive anti-Greek riots broke out in Istanbul. For security reasons, the Greek population left the city almost completely. In 1963, an order was passed, which obliged all Greeks without Turkish passports to leave within a short period of time. Whereas


Ankara was turned into an exhibition model of the young Republic, Istanbul stagnated and developed a certain kind of melancholy, which the Turkish Nobel-prize-winner Orhan Pamuk masterfully describes in his memories called "Istanbul". Caused by industrialization initiated in the middle of the 20 th century, the city was struck by massive immigration. Whereas its population in the 1960s was still about one million, it increased to 9.2 in 1997. Between 1985 and 1990, the average immigration rate per year was one million people. The census taken in 2007 counted 12.8 million. At that point of time, 17.8 percent of Turkey's total population lived in Istanbul. Due to a rapid expansion, new global networks penetrated the city at the Bosporus and created new possibilities for employment and income. New social groups have emerged; globalized and Islamic lifestyles are now practiced side by side, and shopping malls substitute the well-established bazaars. City And Modernity After having gained independence from the Ottoman Empire, the character of the bigger Balkan cities changed. The first step into modernity was the abandonment of the Ottoman character and the Europeanization of the urban space. Previous provincial cities became capitals of emerging independent states and the foci of architectural intervention. Buildings for national assemblies, public libraries, opera houses, theaters, museums, train stations, universities, churches and bank buildings served as markers of Europeanization. The Serbian capital city of Belgrade is a good example. In the course of the 18 th century, the city exposed at the conjuncture of Save and Danube, became a central garrison-city of the Ottoman Empire vis-à-vis the Habsburg Empire. Although Serbia was granted an autonomous status within the Ottoman Empire in 1830 and was able to regulate its internal affairs by itself, a strong Ottoman garrison and a majority of Muslim population remained in Belgrade. After massive tensions between the Muslim and Christian population in 1862, the garrison was dissolved and the Muslim population had to leave. This opened the way for urban initiatives in the Serbian government. City walls and city gates were razed and the labyrinth of the old city straightened. The "Istanbul gate" was replaced by a national symbol – the Serbian National Theater. In front of it, the newly-built main street and the narrow ways of the abandoned bazaar started and crossed. It was paved and flanked by elegant shops, restaurants, hotels, and fountains. Out of originally 15 mosques, only one was left. In 1882, the newly constructed king's palace was opened; in 1905, the first car passed the newly bituminized streets of Belgrade. Between 1866 and 1910, the population increased almost four times from about 25,000 to 90,000, and at about 1900, traditional clothes were substituted by European ones. The second half of the 20th century in the Balkans as well as in the Near East was characterized by a massive country-to-city migration, which has touched mainly the capitals. Athens-Piraeus became the biggest urban conglomerate in the Balkans. Bucharest and Sofia are meanwhile count more than a million of inhabitants. In the Near East, the colonial powers created new and modern city quarters, which originally were inhabited by Europeans. This new colonial space was contrary to the traditional social functions of a Muslim city. After the colonial administration had left, the indigenous population occupied the space, but only wealthier strata could afford to live there. The old city-quarters became vacant and were occupied by immigrating rural strata. The city of the Near East most characterized by colonial administration is Beirut. Outside the old city-quarter – ruined in the civil war in the second half of the 20th century and meanwhile reestablished – new city quarters had been constructed, which show the massive impact of French urban planning. Despite the destructions of the civil war, the city impresses with its elegance to which many Arab businessmen have contributed, who have deposed their money in the "Switzerland of the Near East".


The population development of the Egyptian capital Cairo is similar to that of Istanbul. After it had exceeded one million inhabitants in 1927, the population doubled from four million to eight million between 1966 and 2008. Another eight million people live in the suburbs – predominantly under slum-like conditions and in provisional houses and huts, and without appropriate infrastructure. Table 3: Capitals in the Balkans and the Near East

Capital Abu Dhabi Amman Ankara Athens Baghdad Beirut Belgrade Bucharest Damask Doha Jerusalem Cairo Kuwait-City Manama Masqat Nicosia Podgorica Prishtina Riyadh Sana'a Sarajevo Skopje Sofia Tirana

Inhabitants in 2008 2,563,212 1,036,330 3,641,931 720,979 5,672,516 2,100,000 1,373,651 2,355,788 1,580,909 400,000 729,100 7,734,614 32,403 150,000 880,200 219,200 139,724 550,000 4,328,067 1,937,451 308,558 506,926 1,203,680 600,339

The character of cities was and still is a mirror of societies and the focus of social problems and controversies; they reflect the denominational composition of their population and the level of technology and knowledge achieved. They represent and mirror the character of power and domination. The Near East and later the Balkans constituted urbanized landscapes significantly earlier than Western Europe. Constantinople/Istanbul can be considered one of the most advanced urbanized centers worldwide in the first centuries after its foundation in the 4th century AD. When exactly the West European cities won more importance compared to the Balkan and Near Eastern ones is not easy to determine. A certain advantage of


West European cities may have begun with the early capitalistic concentration of finance streams in the 16th century the latest. In the course of the 19th century, London and Paris became the earliest industrial guiding icons of urban development and economic importance. Today, cities of worldwide significance are situated in Western Europe, Northern America, and Eastern and South Eastern Asia.

Unit 9: Demographic Developments
Demographic developments in pre-modern times were influenced by various factors. Because of low medical knowledge and meager expertise in efficient sickness prevention, basic life expectancy was also low, mortality – especially that of children – was high, and nutrition poor for the majority of the population. At the same time, birth rates were high. They were either intended because mortality rates were high and children were the only age insurance, or unintended because effective birth control was not achievable until the 1960s, when the Pill came on the market. The consequence was a general slight population increase, which was periodically interrupted by epidemics, the causes of which were unknown to the people. But wars could also interrupt population increase abruptly. Effective medical knowledge became available only in the 19th century, which permitted the fight of epidemics and the improvement of hygienic conditions. These measures led to a rapid population increase – beginning in the western hemisphere and in the Balkans and continuing in the rest of the world in the course of the 20th century. The Balkans until the middle of the 19th and the Near East until the beginning of the 20th century were considered underpopulated. In pre-industrialized societies, high population density was considered a precondition for the increase of agricultural production and economic growth in general. The first section of this chapter will reconstruct the demographic development of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) compared to Western Europe; the second section will address the causes of illnesses and mass epidemics, and the third section will analyze the demographic transition and the bio-politics of Eurasia Minor countries in the course of the 20th century. Population Developments Population increase and decrease are hardly to be reconstructed with certainty until the introduction of statistical methods. We can rely on almost certain counting results only since the early 20 th century. The Ottoman Empire had been taking censuses since the first half of the 19th century – but only the male population was counted until the end of this century. Later on, women were also counted but because of the dominant patriarchal structures, women remained under-registered. Moreover, censuses were not taken in all provinces at the same time and, finally, data are hardly comparable because of the territorial losses in Europe since the Congress of Berlin in 1878. In Albania, the first reliable census was taken only in 1918. For the centuries before, we are completely dependent on calculations. In the following section, the demographic developments in Europe and the Near East are going to be reconstructed. In the first two centuries AD, the Roman Empire stretched from the Atlantic to the Caucasus and from England to the Persian Gulf; the total population was about 50 to 60 million people, at the beginning of the Christian era. If our point of departure is that Europe's total population was about 27.5 million around 500 AD and the population of the Balkans was 5.5 million people, then we may assume that the total population of Eurasia Minor (→ Eurasia Minor) was about 35 million. This is supported by the assumption that the east of the Empire was more densely populated than the west. Provided that this hypothesis covers reality even to some degree only, this result is alarming, as at the beginning of the 19 th century, the latter figure for Little Eurasia was still about the same.


Around 750, the population of the newly formed Islamic Near East (Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and Arabia) was between about 13.5 and 17 million people. For the years around 1000, the population of the Byzantine Empire (basically Anatolia and the Balkans) has been calculated to be about 19 million (6.5 million in the Balkans). This again results in about 35 million for the Balkans and the Near East; in other words, the population remained on the same level in the course of the first millennium. The population of the entire Caliphate (→ Caliph) from Spain to India might have been between 28 and 36 million around 750. As a consequence of the Islamic agrarian revolution, this figure might have increased in the centuries that followed. The population of the Ottoman Empire between the years 1520 and 1535 was about 12 or 12.5 million. If this is approximately correct, then Eurasia Minor's population had decreased by two thirds since the years around 1000. The population estimates for the end of the 16th century are 20 to 22 million people. Around 1800, the figure was 25 to 32 million, with the area of the Empire being approximately 3 million km². In the three centuries before 1800, population obviously doubled and again reached the level of the beginning of the Christian era. In 1872, the Empire's population (including the indirectly governed areas of Serbia and Egypt) was about 40 million people. Thus, after about 2000 years, the original figure was achieved again or even exceeded. In 1914, after the territorial losses in Europe and the loss of Egypt, the Ottoman Empire's population was 18.5 million. In the early 19th century, population density in the Balkans was still extremely low in European comparison (around 1840, approximately one third of France). Syria and Egypt, however, suffered a population decrease by one half to one third in the period from 1000 to 1800. Between 950 and 1050, Egypt's population decreased to 1.7 million; by about 1200, it increased to 2.4 million and by the middle of the 14th century (before the Great Plague), to about 4 million. With all necessary caution regarding this kind of estimation, we have to conclude that the population in the Balkans and the Near East quantitatively remained stable at a level of about 35 million in the period of two millennia until 1800. Of course, there must have been considerable fluctuations in the course of this long period. Until the end of the first millennium, it remained stable; from then to the 16 th century it decreased by two thirds, and from the 16th century until about 1800, it doubled and increased slowly in the course of the 19th century. Whereas in the course of the one and a half millennia, from 500 to 1914, Europe's population increased 17 times and the population of the Balkans increased at least 10 times, the population of the Near East increased only by several million people. Around 1600, Europe's total population (without the Balkans) was approximately 90 million, compared to the Ottoman population of only 20 to 22 million. In 1914, the European population (without the Balkans) was 413 million, whereas the Ottoman population was only 18.5 million. These divergent population developments can only be described as dramatic, more so by the end of the first millennium, when the population in both the areas was about equal with 35 million per region. This shift of population density and the parallel shift of human resources in favor of Europe were much more than just a quantitative imbalance. We have to take into consideration that pre-industrial economy was practically exclusively dependent on the number of people capable of work; the efficiency of armies, especially in the period of mass armies, since the Napoleonic wars were almost completely dependent on the capacity of eligible male population. Early Death, Sicknesses, And Epidemics The average life expectancy was presumably regionally similar in the pre-industrial period. One has to take into account that in this long period of time, a high fertility rate was a pre-condition for the compensation of high mortality and the achievement of a little population increase. Each woman had to give birth to at least


five or six children on average until the menopause, in order to have two or three of them that survived infancy and childhood. Life expectancy remained astonishingly stable at a low level for millennia. For the neolithic village of Catal Hüyük (→ Catal Hüyük) with its 6000 inhabitants, an average life expectancy of about 40 years has been calculated. Research on ancient Egypt shows that at about the age of three, mortality rate reached a first peak, when breast feeding was stopped and substituted by compact food. Those who survived this first period had an average life expectancy of 29 years. Only few enjoyed their 60th birthday. Because of the better quality of food and due to the lower labor burden, life expectancy of the social elite was higher than among the ordinary population. The average life expectancy at birth was approximately between 20 and 30 years in ancient Greece. Women achieved a higher age than men. Mortality among children was also high. Children, who survived the first years after birth, had a remarkably higher life expectancy. Twenty-five to thirty percent of newborns died within the first year; approximately 50 percent died before they reached the age of ten. Families with many children were therefore rare exceptions. In the period of Emperor Augustus (27 BC-14 AD), average life expectancy was seemingly lower than 25 years. Only four out of hundred men and even fewer women reached the age of 50. Bad sanitary conditions, low medical knowledge, high birth risks for women, deficient nutrition, and wars were responsible for early death. Infectious sicknesses such as tuberculosis and malaria had disastrous effects. In cities, mortality rates were particularly high. The latrines were not connected to the sullage systems so that mortality in the summer period was higher than in the winter period. For the Byzantine Empire of the 5th/6th and the 14th century, a life expectancy of 45 years for men and 42 for women, who have survived the first five years, has been calculated. For the late period of the Empire, average life expectancy at birth was 25 years; the birth rate was 44 per thousand and survival rate within the first five years was 50 percent. In the 1930s in Turkey, general life expectancy at birth was only about 30 years, 47 years in 1950, and 68 (men) and 73 (women) years in 2004. At least until WWII, mortality rates were generally higher among the Muslim population than among the non-Muslim population. This was possibly related to religiously based passivity towards sicknesses that aggravated the use of medical ingredients against epidemic sicknesses. In West and Central Europe in the course of the 18th century, mortality rates could decrease significantly after governmental interventions. This was due to the efficient combat of diarrhea and tuberculosis. Immediately after WWII, mortality could be reduced even more effectively by antibiotics. In addition, in the course of the 18th and 19th centuries, the quality of food improved significantly. From the end of the 17th to the beginning of the 19th century, most of the epidemic sicknesses could be erased in West and Central Europe: the Black Death at the beginning of the 18th century, typhus and smallpox about one century later, and also yellow fever as well as malaria. This was not the case in the Ottoman Empire and therefore, the Habsburg Empire installed a sanitary cordon along its borders with the Ottoman Empire already in the 18 th century. Low life expectancy means that the proportion of young population was high and analogously, the proportion of old population rather low; the proportion of widowed and remarried persons was high as well. Many children had to be raised without a father or a mother. Male or female slaves were often responsible for education and training. Calculations have shown that 37 percent of boys in the Roman Empire had lost their father and 28 percent their mother by the age of 15. Three generation-families were therefore rare and many families remained without a male successor. In the lower social strata, children had to contribute to the family budget already at an early age – for instance as labor force in agriculture. In the upper classes, the members of which were not exposed to physical work, the family patriarch hardly passed over his property before he died. The opposite was the case in the sectors of agriculture and handicraft because the elders lost their capability of physical work. The


question of property transfer to the next generation might have evoked tensions frequently because the elder generation had to be anxious about the appropriate obedience of the receiving son. Similarly to life expectancy, which did not change significantly over a long period of time, sicknesses were also comparable everywhere. However, we have to consider regional specifics. Many people of ancient Egypt were afflicted by parasites caused by dirty water. Their lung sicknesses were caused by sand from the desert and coal dust - the latter as a consequence of the smoke of open fire. Tuberculosis was widespread. Teeth were harmed by silicon, from frictions of millstones in the processes of threshing and milling. Abscesses and painful disablements were common, too. Many people over 40 suffered backbone osteophytosis – a hump caused by arduous labor and exertion. Because of their rich food, wealthy people suffered arteriosclerosis. Cancer was rare because only few people reached the age of increasing cancer risk. In ancient Egypt, medicine was better developed than everywhere else at that time. In a papyrus text, different kinds of snake-bites are analyzed, another one discusses about 700 recipes for internal sickness. Infractions were already treated in a sophisticated manner. Egyptian doctors healed broken bones and treated open wounds, and even conducted operations. Many treatments failed because proper knowledge about the bodily functions was missing. For instance, the heart was considered the center of the body, which distributes body fluids such as blood, saliva, urine, and sperm. The conviction that sicknesses were caused by the hindered flow of the body fluids was widespread. The apparent solution to the problem consisted of complicated techniques and the drinking of magic potions, which had, of course, no positive impact on sickness. Sicknesses were combated for instance with Nile mud and mice excrement in conjunction with a broad variety of herbs and animal extracts. Most of the Hippocratic texts (→ Hippocrates) deemed body fluids responsible for sicknesses. Main fluids were considered yellow and black bile, blood and saliva. Health was considered a sign for the good balance of the body fluids, sickness as a sign for the unhealthy dominance of one of the fluids. A kind of sickness that was diagnosed as caused by insufficient heat of the body was treated with food, which was believed to be warming. The heart was considered as hottest part of the body, which produced breath. As a reason for women's sicknesses, their higher body fluidity compared to men's was diagnosed. Their flesh, doctors thought, was more poriferous and absorbed more fluidity from the food. This is why they would menstruate regularly, because otherwise they would be flooded with their own blood and become sick. The findings of Hippocrates and Galen (see Chapter 12) remained a basis for medical science until the 19th century, although their authority had been doubted already in the 16th century – for instance by Paracelsus (approx. 1493-1541) and his followers. The importance of hygiene and pure water for the prevention of sicknesses was known already in early times. Already early cultures considered baths important. They became related to public rituals but were also established for private use. The palace of Mari (→ Mari) comprised baths already in the early 2nd millennium; Minoan (→ Minoans) and Mycenaeans (→ Mycenae) also stressed bath culture. The provision of clean water belonged to the central survival strategies of ancient cities. Also the removal of dirty water by cloacae systems was crucial. Ancient Greece emphasized bath areas as well; in gymnasia, cold baths were combined with hot sweating bathes. Heating systems took care of water treatment. Hippocrates' writings propagated the use of thermal springs. In the Roman Empire, baths were partially luxuriously equipped. If there were organized separate bathing times for men and women previously, mixed bathing for men and women became usual in imperial times. Bathing culture became subtle and elaborated. The guest was directed from the cabin first to cold water basins and outdoor baths to different warm baths and finally to hot water basins. Bathing facilities were usually oriented from South West (warm zones) to North East (cold zones). In the period of crises in the 6th and 7th centuries, with their mass epidemics and numerous defeats by the Byzantine army, public


bath culture declined. In cities, only little bath houses with an entrance hall and the bathing room were to be found. Still in the 5th century in Constantinople, numerous public thermal springs and private bathing facilities were registered; in the 7th century, most of them did not exist any longer. Due to Islam bathing culture, new impulses arose. Islamic bath culture is narrowly linked to religion. Ritual baths were foreseen for certain occasions. However, the formerly noble thermal springs and baths were substituted by smaller functional buildings – typically the hamam, the Turkish bath. It is best suited for the ritual bath foreseen by the Koran. Physical and psychical cleaning (by prayer) are strongly linked to each other in Islam. The five-time-daily prayer is introduced by physical cleaning with running water. Sexual intercourse should be concluded by a thorough cleaning of the body, which could be done primarily in public baths. The Islamic bath is not only different from the Greek-Roman predecessors by its size but also by its architecture. Islamic architecture was oriented toward an "oriental" ornamental style; the facilities were not visible from the outside and received light only through openings in the roof cupola, which provided for a damped atmosphere. Islam strongly opposes skinny-dipping and women's bath culture. Also Judaism prescribes the ritual bath – in this case the dip. Alike in Islam, water has to be running. Physical and psychical pureness are tightly linked with each other. The ritual bath is foreseen after certain sicknesses, birthîng, and menstruation. The most important epidemic sicknesses were already known in the Neolithic period – even though they could not be fought – when people increasingly became sedentarized. The human being lived in close relation with his domestic animals and was frequently exposed to their dispersion. The dangerous mix of pathogens was made more explosive by the processing of animal wool, hide, as well as the consumption of eggs. These sicknesses, which were transferred from animals to men, included the plague, tuberculosis, malaria, yellow fever as well as influenza; recent HIV 1 and 2 as well as the Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. People then had not yet inherited resistance viruses against infection and had no idea about its causes. Usually, their gods were held responsible. Sacrifices to the local patron gods and the use of protection amulets were considered effective protection measures. The concentration of large parts of the population in large settlements and cities increased the risk of dissemination; while in underpopulated areas, the virus only had a low chance to disseminate. The most far reaching epidemic sickness in human history was the plague. It is known since about 3500 years and constitutes a highly infectious sickness, which is caused by the bacterium versinia pestis. The sickness became manifest in three forms: as bubonic plague, as pneumonia, and as an infection of the entire body. Visible sickness indications of the bubonic plague are bumps, which emerge at neuralgic points. Additional phenomena include ague, increased temperature, headache, insomnia, apathy, and delirium. The main carrier of the bacterium is the rat. Blood-suckling and infected flies transfer the bacterium to the human being. Frequent pandemics (epidemics over several countries and/or continents) occurred. The bacillus was discovered only by the end of the 19th century, which led to effective plague pathology. The actual reasons were, of course, unknown to the early doctors in history. The most common explanation in the East as well as in the West was that the pestilence was caused and spread by spoiled air – miasma. Human beings, animals, water, as well as plants – all were allegedly struck by the miasma. The Arab scholars took over the miasma-hypothesis from the leading doctors of antiquity, Hippocrates and Galen, and their humor theory, which believed the world to be composed of the four elements of fire, air, water, and earth. Each element was related to the four body fluids, which took over the quality of the respective element. Spoiled air allegedly resulted in turbulences of the originally healthy relation of the four fluids caused by fever and the spout of blood. Prophylaxis consisted of the reconstruction of the sound relationship of the fluids to each other. From the middle ages to the 19 th century, the Muslim world believed in a resolution consisting of the fumigation and improvement of the spoiled air by aromatic flavors. It was


recommended to stay at places with dirt and smoke because of the flavors they produced, which were considered stronger than the spoiled air. Moreover, patients were advised to breath as little as possible. As a prophylactic measure, Muslim physicians suggested the consumption of lenses and pumpkin, the drinking of sour drinks such as lemon and grape juice, as well as garlic before breakfast. Already infected, venesection was recommended, since the spoiled air would cause an increasing blood production, which could no longer be processed by the heart. It is believed that Muhammad also commented on the plague. According to him, the plague was a mercy to the believing Muslim and a punishment for the non-believers. A Muslim should neither move into a plague-inflicted country nor flee out of it (because God has already decided on his death). Moreover, the plague was not considered contaminous because it was sent by God directly. A treatment was therefore useless. Many did not consider the plague as God's warning or punishment of the non-believers but a warning of the laxity of Muslims. Between 430 and 426 BC, Athens' population suffered the outbreak of a mysterious sickness, which was certainly not the bubonic plague that became widespread later. One quarter of the population perished in the course of these years. In 429, the statesman Pericles (→ Pericles) died of this sickness, which could have been measles, smallpox, typhus, anthrax, or influenza. How could it happen that so many people died from one and the same sickness at the same time? Spoiled air was identified as a cause, which affected everybody. According to a legend, Hippocrates (→ Hippocrates) and his sons combated the epidemic with gigantic bonfire, which was supposed to thin the air. The Athenians assumed that the epidemic's origin was in Ethiopia, from where it entered Egypt, Libya, and the Persian Empire before it reached Athens. The historian Thucydides (→ Thucydides) (approx. 460-395), a contemporary witness, found an obviously correct explanation by analyzing a relation to the ongoing war with Sparta, which took place at the same time. The Spartans established a camp outside the city in the summer season and were struck by an epidemic. The entire population of the city's surrounding fled into the city; and treatment of the sick was believed to be responsible for the wide distribution of the disease. Thucydides was probably the first who understood contamination as reason for the epidemic. However, until the 1860s, the miasma-theory dominated. It is widely accepted that malaria epidemics increased since late Antiquity. The cause for its distribution was that regional and central administrative bodies no longer took care of the irrigation systems thoroughly. This resulted in the extension of wetlands and the loaming of river orifices, and at the same time, in population decrease. The wetlands became biotopes of pathogenic mosquitoes. Even in the rich east of the empire, public labor, which should limit erosion and loaming, decreased after the periods of Emperor Anastasius (491-518) and Justinian (→ Justinian) (527-565). The consequence was an increase of malaria epidemics. Their distribution area was almost identical with the territory of the Byzantine Empire in the 6th/7th centuries. Similar to malaria, leprosy (Hansen's' sickness) was also widespread in the Roman Empire. Its distribution was related to bad hygienic conditions and poverty in the 6th century. A new lethal and fatal epidemic of the 6th century was the bubonic plague, a specific form of the plague. The first documented pandemic plague in the history of human kind was the Great Plague of 541/42 in the Byzantine Empire and its cyclical return every nine to twelve years until the 8 th century. It was also called the "Justinianic plague", since it spread over the entire imperial territory in the period of the Emperor Justinian (→ Justinian) (527-565). Originating in Ethiopia, it was brought to the Mediterranean coast by tradesmen. From the orifice of the Nile, the rest of Egypt, Syria, and Palestine were touched. About one third of the population was struck; every age category was hit and the survivors were weakened. Cities were much more concerned than the countryside, sedentary peasants stronger than nomads. The plague reached


Constantinople in the spring of 542. It was distributed by rats on ships and reached also Western Europe one year later. The consequences of the epidemic were catastrophic. The population of Constantinople decreased from about 400,000 in the early 6th century to 40,000-70,000 around 700. At the same time, also other epidemics such as smallpox, earthquakes, and long-lasting wars such as the Gothic wars in Italy (535-555) and the battles with the Arabs since 636 were on the agenda. The urban population of the entire Empire was considerably reduced. The population decrease provoked the Persian invasions in Anatolia in the first half of the 7th century; because of his weakened army, Justinian was not able to realize his aim to re-establish the Roman Empire; not even the existing borders of the Empire could be stabilized. The Langobards (→ Langobards) invaded South Italy, the Berbers attacked Byzantine North Africa, and the Arab conquest of Byzantine imperial territories was facilitated, since the nomadic warriors were struck less by the epidemic. Economic activities on all levels were reduced; whole regions were abandoned by their populations. In the Balkans, Slavs began to settle the remaining regions. The Empire recovered demographically from the plague only one century later. In the 9th century, woods were cleared again, which covered formerly cultivated areas; so for instance the Peloponnesus peninsula of Mani, which had been depopulated for two centuries, since 812. In Thessaly, Central Greece, on Peloponnesus, and in South Anatolia, population and cultivated areas again increased in the 9 th century. The population of Constantinople began to recover only in the 10th century and reached again about 400,000 inhabitants in the 11th and 12th centuries – a figure of half a millennium before; and population in other cities increased as well. Due to the growth of population and population density, there was more economic activity. However, the bigger cities had hardly recovered in the middle of the 14th century (1348) when another plague had devastating consequences on the population – just like all over in Europe. The population of Constantinople decreased again to 50,000 people and Thessalonica's population of approximately 150,000 to about 40,000 (1453). This second big wave of plague certainly originated in the Asiatic steppe. From there, it reached the Crimean Peninsula and was distributed via the main trade routes to the Mediterranean and the Byzantine Empire. Geneva's fleet transferred the plague from the Pontus to Europe. In 1347, it reached Sicily. Sicily, Geneva, and Venice were distribution nucleuses in Southern Europe. In 1348, the epidemic had already spread over the major parts of Italy at the expense of the lives of one third of its population. By the end of the year, it crossed the Alps and reached the Balkans and East Central Europe. Between 1348 and 1350, one third of Europe's population became a casualty of the epidemic. The Serbian emperor Stefan Dushan emigrated from his country to the most efficient quarantine station of his time – the Holy Mountain Athos. In 1347, the plague reached Egypt, Anatolia, and the Levant, and Mecca in 1348-49, transferred by trade ships from the Pontus; from the Near East, it was then spread to North Africa. Also in Syria and Egypt, approximately one third of the population became victims of the Black Death. Because of the frequency of follow-up epidemics, the population could not grow any longer. For the period between 1347 and 1517, documentary sources mention 58 years with bigger and smaller epidemics. The faintly settled Arab-Islamic regions obviously escaped the Justinianic plague. The Muslim conquests were even followed by a population increase, which was caused by (1) regional Arab immigration to the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent), (2) an increasing number of slaves as a consequence of the conquests and (3) by obviously improved hygienic conditions. The number of epidemics decreased. Still, under the Umayyads (→ Umayyads) smallpox was widespread especially in major cities. We may assume that since the middle of the 8th century Mesopotamia's population increased significantly. New villages and cities emerged. Baghdad was, compared by their populations, with 200,000-600,000 inhabitants at the peak of the Abbasid period (→ Abbasids) in the 10th century, five times bigger than Constantinople. However, civil


wars after the disempowerment of the Abbasids were the start of a demographic decrease and a degradation of hygienic conditions, in particular in the cities. Provision with water worsened. Since the middle of the 10th century, the frequency of epidemics began to increase again. The sickness spirochetosis icterohemorrhagica (Weil's disease) is frequently mentioned in the cities of Mesopotamia. Swelling necks were a frequent cause of death. Almost surely, the region could not recover from the Great Plague of the middle of the 14th century; this was possibly the most important reason for the significant population decrease in the centuries from 1000 to 1500. Also the Ottoman Empire was frequently a host to epidemics, although the catastrophic extent of the 7 and 14th centuries' phenomena remained an exception. Harbors and caravan destinations such as Aleppo and Izmir were particularly struck. In the course of the 18th century, Izmir was a victim of an epidemic almost every second year. In 1773, two thirds of the total population of Baghdad and in 1781, 25,000 people in Thessalonica died of epidemics. In the Balkans, the plague was present in the major cities with average climate such as Thessalonica and the harbor cities along the trade routes. Dubrovnik with its intensive commercial relations to the Ottoman Empire was considered especially exposed; already in 1377, a checkpoint for ship crews ("lazareti") was established outside the city walls. The risk of infection was high, when cities were situated close to each other along trade routes; when the distance was bigger the chance of dying before reaching the next city was also higher. In the mountains, the plague was hardly present and therefore people used to escape to the mountainous areas in epidemic periods. In normal epidemic years, about 10 to 20 percent of the population died, in more pronounced years, the percentage was more than twenty. In the first quarter of the 19th century, epidemics could still reach catastrophic dimensions. The bubonic plague, especially in Izmir, had many victims at the end of the 18 th and at the beginning of the 19th century. Between 1812 and 1818, the entire Empire was struck. In 1812, allegedly about 300,000 people in the metropolitan area of Istanbul and in 1836, 30,000 inhabitants of the city itself died of epidemics. In the course of the following three decades, the Balkans also became a target of the plague practically every year. Until 1850, the bubonic plague haunted the Egyptian, Syrian, Iraq, and Arab provinces every decade – in Western Anatolia, 26 times between 1801 and 1850. Whereas the danger of epidemics in the Balkans and Anatolia decreased since about 1850, it remained virulent in the Iraq and Arab provinces. When the plague lost importance, the Asiatic cholera spread via Russia – first in Iraq, and in the course of the following three decades, seven cholera epidemics were registered. In 1865, about 30,000 pilgrims to Mecca died of cholera and in 1893, almost 40,000. Returning pilgrims distributed the epidemic in their home cities. In 1902, one of the last empire-wide cholera epidemics occurred. Demographic Transition And Bio-Politics Large-scale epidemics were combated in the Balkan countries more successfully than in the Near East. This was the most important reason for the inset of the Demographic Transition already in the second half of the 19th century here. This phenomenon was characterized by the transition from the millennium-long era of low life expectancy and high birth rates to a new era of increasing life expectancy and decreasing birth rates. This transition did not occur suddenly anywhere, but birth rates began to decrease only decades after the decline of mortality rates. Therefore, in the course of transition, population increased significantly. In the years around 1900, the Balkan states had the largest demographic increase rates in Europe. Birth rates of 40 to 45 per 1000 inhabitants (compared to more than 30 in pre-industrial Europe) and mortality rates of less than 30 per 1000 inhabitants were responsible for this increase. In Serbia and Greece, the increase already began in the 1860s, in the other Balkan states – except for the Muslim-populated areas – in the 1880s. Interestingly enough, this transition began half of a century later among the Muslim population. This holds true for all countries of the Near East as well as for the Muslim Balkan population.


The reason was the Muslim population's aloofness to healthcare politics. The consequence was that among the Muslims population, increase only began when a decrease started among Christians. We are witnesses to the decrease of reproduction among the Muslim population in the Balkans and the Near East. The question what methods were used by men and women in order to reduce birth rates is yet unanswered. In all countries of the Near East and the Balkans, abortion was prohibited until the middle of the 20th century. Condoms were either not imported or neglected by men, and the use of the Pill was not facilitated either. The scarcely populated countries of the Near East decided for a bio-politics of population increase. In Turkey for instance, a law was passed in 1930, according to which the distribution of contraceptive devices as well as abortion was prohibited – except in special cases. In the 1960s, however, these politics were changed. Population increase was not considered positive any longer since it created more social and economic problems than what it contributed to national strength. In 1965, Turkey decided in favor of family politics. Families were allowed to decide themselves on their number of children. In 1982, abortion was finally allowed – however, only if the husband or father of an unmarried woman agreed. In the socialist Balkan states such as Bulgaria and Romania, developments were different. Abortion was permitted in Bulgaria in 1956, and in Romania in 1957. The consequence was a drastic decline of births; in 1967 the number of births was already lower than the number of abortions. Romania became the worldwide leading country of abortions, with the number of pregnancy terminations being four times higher than birth rates. Both regimes reacted drastically because they were afraid ofy not being able to achieve their ambitious industrialization aims anymore. In 1966, abortion was prohibited in Romania as well as in Bulgaria. This prohibition, however, had only short-time effects. Because of the decreasing birth rates, the Romanian governance declared the fetus socialist property in the early 1980s. Couples without children were forced to undergo obligatory examination and were punished if the result was that the childlessness had no medical reasons. After the turnover of the communist regimes, these bio-political measures were lifted; since then abortion is permitted under certain conditions and access to contraceptives is given. Meanwhile, in the Islamic countries, family planning has been supported. The consequence is that in Turkey, fertility rate (number of births per woman) decreased from 2.93 (1990-1994) to 2.43 (2004) and to 2.18 (2006). The effect is that Turkey's population will not transgress 100 million and will increase in the period from 2000 to 2050 only from 68 million to 98 million. In Egypt, fertility rate decreased from 3.15 (2000) to 2.72 (2008), in Saudi-Arabia from 3.81 (2000) to 3.35 (2008); in the United Arab Emirates it decreased from 3.29 (2000) to 2.43 (2008). Even in the occupied Palestine territories, it decreased from 5.63 (2000) to 5.09 (2008). Demographic Transition is, of course, no law of nature. Economic conditions play a decisive role. We could speculate about why the Muslim population as a whole still does not use contraceptives in the amount that West does. In doing so, many causes would be revealed except for one: Islamic tradition. When contemporary Islamic dignitaries suggest a high number of children, they don't do so because of religious principles. As we will see in Chapter 12, Islam doesn't know the intervention in reproductive behavior. To sum up, we are confronted with a contradictory demographic picture, which was first characterized - less in the Balkans but primarily in the Near East - by population stagnation for more than a millennium until the 19th century. Documentary evidence and demographic estimations indicate disastrous effects of plagues in the middle of the 6th and the middle of the 14th centuries. Moreover, for instance in the case of Egypt, irregularities of Nile inundations could result in famines (see Chapter 3). Hygienic measures and the fight against mass epidemics in the Ottoman Empire were less effective than in Western Europe. The Koranic permission of abortion may have had less effects on demographic developments than the other reasons mentioned. In general, the reasons of demographic stagnation are not yet sufficiently clear.


Unit 10: Religions
It is actually astonishing that between Jerusalem and Mecca – the geographical distance between the two cities is only 1232 km – three big monotheistic religions emerged: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Therefore, it is not surprising that all three have certain common roots; the younger two of them integrated the Biblical Israelite progenitor Abraham into their own history of emergence. Therefore, they are also called Abrahamitic religions. In the Islamic interpretation, Ishmael – Abraham's son, who was born from Hagar, an Egyptian servant, outside marriage (however, at his infertile wife Sara's request) and was sent to the desert by Abraham – is the progenitor of Islam and the Arab tribes. He was circumcised by Abraham, and the very same day, Abraham circumcised himself. Thus, both entered into a contract with God. According to Jewish tradition, Isaac, another Israelite progenitor, who was born later, was acknowledged as a legitimate son to Abraham, who could accept his inheritance. In Christian interpretation, the physical descent from Abraham was of no importance; what counted much more was spiritual kinship, in other words, acting in Abraham's sense. Therefore, it is enlightening to illustrate the common background as well as the differences between the three religions. One thing is that the differences are based on theological sophistries; another thing is that many people are convinced of them. Basically, it has to be mentioned that in pre-monotheistic times, there was no concept of the existence of only one almighty God, who was responsible for all spheres of life and that the Earth and all other heavenly bodies, as well as the human being, animals, flora and fauna were created by him. Such an image was too abstract for people in the early periods. It was much simpler to imagine a pantheon with gods responsible for different situations in life. The ancient Greeks (→ ancient Greece) also worshipped dozens of gods, who often had local or familial meaning only. They assumed the most important of them resided on Mount Olympus (in present-day Northern Greece). On the top of their pantheon was the god of the heavens, Zeus (god of lightning and storm) and his wife Hera; Aphrodite was the goddess of love, Hermes the messenger of the gods, Athena the goddess of sapience, Demeter the goddess of grain, Artemis the moon god, and Poseidon the god of the sea, the earthquake, and the horses. Many of these god figures were already known in the ancient Near East; for instance the godfather Zeus. Others had Greek roots but eastern origins. This chapter will present the three Abrahamitic religions and their origins. Beyond that, it seems to be appropriate to analyze the characteristics that unify and divide them. Therefore, the first three sections will address the history and the contents of the three religions, and the last section will deal with the differences among them. Judaism It was only a small step from the universal superiority of great gods to the acknowledgement of a sole God, who dominated the universe and mankind. Monotheism was first prayed by the prophets of ancient Israel, later on by Christianity and Islam. The Hebrews constituted a West Semitic tribal group (→ Semitic), which was related to the Amorites (→ Amorites), and appeared in the area of the Fertile Crescent (→ Fertile Crescent) by the end of the 3rd millennium. Scholars, whose research is based on the biblical tradition, agree with the assumption that the emigration from Egypt under the leadership of Moses as well the crossing of the Sinai Peninsula and the conquest of Canaan (→ Canaan) must have taken place at about the middle of the 13th century BC. The "Egyptian captivity" may have endured about 400 to 430 years. The exact route of the exodus cannot be reconstructed any longer. The period of the Patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) might be dated in the first half of the 2nd millennium. The Hebrews were probably semi-nomads before the


conquest and lived on the fringes of the Canaan cities, with which they maintained good relations; they might have even participated in caravan trade. We don't know all the details of the conquest of Canaan; anyway, the allegedly twelve tribes became sedentary. They settled as dispersed tribal units and therefore, the independent Canaan enclaves remained. Most of them were eliminated in the 11th century. According to the Old Testament, the tribes were united as a monarchy under the leadership of Saul (1020-1006) but a kingdom was established formally only under his successor David (approx. 1006-965). He subdued the Philistines (→ Philistines) and various Aramaic tribes (→ Aramaic). According to the Bible, David was succeeded by his son Salomon (965-928). Neither David's nor Salomon's existence is historically proven. After Salomon's alleged death, the kingdom was divided into two parts – the ten tribes in the North constituted the kingdom of Israel, the two tribes in the South the Kingdom of Judah. Both kingdoms existed side by side for about two centuries. In 732, the Assyrian Empire (→ Assyria) conquered Israel, which was then annihilated. Judah continued to exist but became an Assyrian vassal (→ Assyria). In 605, the territory came under Babylonian (→ Babylonia) domination. After a Jewish uprising in 597, Jerusalem was plundered and between 597 and 587, the majority of its inhabitants were displaced to Babylon ("Babylonian Confinement"); the central Jewish sanctuary – Jerusalem's Temple, allegedly founded by Salomon – was destroyed. Since 167, the Maccabees – a Jewish stirps – combated the domination of the Persian Seleucids (→ Seleucids), which succeeded the Babylonians in domination, and later the domination of the Egyptians; in this way, they won domination – a theocratic one – over the Jewish people. Herod (37-4), a Jew but not a descendent of the twelve tribes, defeated the Maccabees with support from the Romans. In 37, Herod conquered Jerusalem and put the last ruler of the Maccabees to death; the unity of the functions of the high priest and the ruler were divided, the more so as the newly established Roman province was occupied also by other religious groups. As a consequence of the integration into the Roman Empire, Herod was installed as ruler of Palestine; the country was treated as a confederate of Rome, and Herod became completely dependent on Rome (first, from the emperor Antonius and then from Augustus), on the one hand; on the other hand, he was a strong ruler. He governed with an iron fist and could keep his position until his death. He ordered the gorgeous construction of a second Jewish Temple (Herod's Temple) and gave permission to the establishment of Roman temples outside Jewish settlements. His death was followed by a disintegration of the vassal state and its division under the rule of three of his surviving sons. Rome intervened and turned the Jewish core areas into a Roman province (Judea) with its capital in Caesarea. The province was integrated into the Roman taxation system. The high priest and the Jewish upper class were made responsible for tax collection. In addition, it was probably the Maccabees who introduced a temple tax as well as a fee for the temple priests, which they charged from every man of the age of 20. One of the governors of the province was Pontius Pilates (26-36). The atmosphere between Pilates and the Jewish population of the province became hostile; numerous unrests took place during his term of office. From the Jewish perspective, there was a striking contradiction between the messianic prophecy and the hope for salvation on the one side, and the reality of Roman domination with its heathen cult on the other side. In addition, there was the Roman control of the Temple and the Temple cult as well as the imposition of high taxes and tributes. Moreover, the Roman system of rule preferred the Syrian-Greek population. The provincial troops were primarily recruited from the Hellenized cities. In many cases, governors were chosen from these regions. The first Jewish revolt against Roman domination was therefore also a social revolt. The lower strata were frequently indebted, and the social elite collaborated with the Roman emperors. The perennial uprising (66-70) was struck down bloodily; the second Temple was destroyed. Jerusalem lost its status as a center of


Jewish scholarship and as the only site for the sacrifice, and Babylon (→ Babylonia) again moved into the focus as leading Jewish community. Generally, the destruction of the Temple resulted in the decentralization of Jewish intellectual life; the Diaspora began. In the years from 132 to 135, a second big uprising (Simon Bar Kochbas-Revolt) took place and was again struck down bloodily. Ten thousands were killed, enslaved and displaced, and the Diaspora began to focus on the Iberian Peninsula, the Germanic, and Pannonic provinces. From this point in history, the Jews constituted only a little minority in Judea. The biggest Jewish settlement concentration remained out of the Roman Empire at the lower Euphrates River due to the Babylonian Exile; and the Babylonian Talmud was written here. Christianity In 312, the Roman Emperor Constantine acknowledged Christianity as equal to the Roman worship of gods. Thus, the period of persecution ended and the way to Christianity as a state's religion was paved. The emperor converted to Christianity at a point in time, when possibly only five to ten percent of the Empire's total population – 70 million – were confessing Christians. How was this possible? In the 20s of the 1st century in Galilee, the "Jesus movement", still a small group of men and women and not exclusively male disciples, was strongly influenced by Jesus from Nazareth (6 BC-probably 30 AD) and socialized in Judaism. Jesus opposed the Jewish temple cult and formulated a pronounced social ethic without losing common ground with Judaism. This was also the case with the second generation. After Jesus' death in Jerusalem, the first sedentary Christian community emerged – Jerusalem's original community. This was the point of departure for succeeding communities in Judea but also outside the province. Contemporary sociology of religion interprets Jesus as a "charismatic" and his followers before and after his death as "charismatic movement", which was able to construct an alternative world (the Empire of God). The community and Jesus belonged to the lower strata; Jesus was a migrant laborer. They left their families and workplace, which did not have very much to offer, in order to proclaim their message, and they had to fight for survival. They considered themselves chosen ones, who want to overcome their inferior situation. The approaching Empire of God would reverse the social relations. This conviction was an important pre-condition for the survival of the movement. The death of the charismatic leader was no catastrophe for the charismatic movement, but quite the contrary: an impulse for its unfolding charisma. The message of the Jesus movement was especially addressed to the lower strata of Jewish society; wealth exceeding the subsistence minimum was condemned. This message met with numerous groups of contemporary Judaism, which can be summarized as "social banditry". The apostles – literally translated, the representatives of the principal in absence – enjoyed Jesus' charisma. The charismatic assignment was especially related to the missionary extension of the followers in Judea. Jesus' followers attended the temple service and the sacrifices until the destruction of the second temple. Upon its destruction, the Jewish sacrifice cult, all religious activities, the charge of the high priest and that of the other priests ended. This led to a reorganization of Judaism on the basis of a decentralized rabbinate; and at the same time resulted in the retirement of Jews, who believed in Christ. Obviously, this retirement was encouraged by both sides. An exact date for the retirement from the Synagogue councils cannot be stated; this was a long enduring process, in which the "Christians" began to oppose circumcision or the Jewish dietary rules. They pointed increasingly to their conviction that God's son was not only sent to the Jews but to all human beings. This messenger, who returned to the divine world, would be the real sovereign over the world and not the emperor, who was only enthroned by the heavenly sovereign. Many Jews rejected such ideas and began to exclude Christians from the synagogues. Christians interpreted the destruction of Jerusalem's temple in 70 AD as God's penalty because Jews would not believe in the Messiah. In rapid succession and originating in Jerusalem, Christian communities emerged in Antioch and Damascus, which were no longer composed of Jews only but also of former non-monotheists. These


communities called themselves "ekklesia" (the Greek term for assembly, community) – an assembly, which became a community in the Christian sense. Sociologically analyzed, these communities lacked representatives of the social elite as well as representatives of the absolute poor. The majority of the Christian communities since about 70 consisted of people from the lower class: released slaves, craftsmen, and small-traders. The astonishing part is the rapid extension of the new religion under very unfavorable circumstances. Its ethic claims were high for simple people; in addition, there were waves of pursuit by the state authorities. From the Roman Empire's perspective, Christianity was initially one of a series of practiced cults, which were tolerated as long as they did not oppose to the emperor's cult and the worship of the gods of the state. The suspicion of the state authorities increased with the Christians' enduring secrecy of their rites and dogmas and their refusal of the emperor's cult, which was basically considered a political offense, which could be punished with death penalty (the only exceptions were the Jews since Caesar). In 176, emperor Marcus Aurelius (161-180) prohibited the introduction of new religions and cults, while Christians tried to prove the long tradition of their religion, referring to the Old Testament. The Roman Empire of the 3 rd century AD was confronted with a significant political crisis, which, among other measures, was supposed to be resolved by a decree of Emperor Decius in 249, which called for sacrifices of every citizen for the state's gods – as a sign of solidarity with the emperor and the empire – and of Emperor Diocletian (284-305) in 303, which ordered the destruction of Christian beadhouses and books, and finally, the suspension of civil rights of Christians. This resulted in the most severe pursuit of Christians ever. Many of them had to pay with their life for their refusal. Hardly ten years later, Emperor Constantine performed the above mentioned turn, accepted Christianity as equal to official paganism, and was baptized. Finally, in 380, Christianity was proclaimed a state religion. The core areas of advancing Christianity were Syria and Greater Syria (including Lebanon and Palestine), respectively, including cities such as Antioch, Damascus, and Jerusalem. The New Testament was written in Syrian cities by the Evangelists. In 34 in Damascus, Paul converted to Christianity. He composed his theology in Antioch, the then capital city of the Roman province of Syria. It was here that the Hebrew title "Messiah" (the Anointed) first was translated into Greek as "Christos" and the adherence of Jesus were called "Christians". In this city, Christians adored the cross as a symbol of salvation for the first time, and called their prayer houses "kyriakos" – in Greek, "house of the Lord", which is the origin of the English word "church". Thus, it was even stranger that Syria was overrun by Islam in the middle of the 7th century. Because of theological disputes, the originally homogenous Christian Church split into numerous Churches, with the biggest variety being in Syria since late antiquity. If one departs from the two big "camps", namely Roman-Catholic and Greek-Orthodox Christianity, then Maronites (→ Maronites), Chaldaeans (→ Nestorians), Greek, Armenian, Syrian, and Latin Catholics as well as Copts belong to the Catholic camp. The Arab-Orthodox and the Syrian-Orthodox Churches are affiliated with the Orthodox Church. Which were the theological questions that separated the Christian intellectuals? One of the central disputes concerned the question of the trinity of the Godfather, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Muslims as well as Christians considered this as belief in two gods. The first main conflict was initiated by the priest Arius (335/36) in the Egyptian city of Alexandria (→ Alexandria) and captured the whole east of the Empire: Only one God would exist; he is unborn and eternal. God's son is not eternal and not unborn. The son is neither of his father's essence nor superior to his father. Christendom was at risk to become a two-god belief. As a consequence, Arius was excommunicated by his bishop and expelled from Alexandria (→ Alexandria) in 320. In order to solve this problem, Emperor Constantine convoked the Council of Nicaea (325) – the


Empire's first council with Constantine as chairman. A vast majority condemned Arius' theses: God is creator of the visible and the non-visible. God's son was born by his father's essence. The Holy Spirit is faith itself. The Council of Chalcedon (451) decided that Christ consists of two unmixed and separate natures, and the two natures preserve their characteristics. The so called "monophysites" insist on one nature only and claim that the human one was absorbed by the divine. The Egyptian (Copts) and Syrian Christians (Jacobites) accepted that. The Council condemned this interpretation and insisted on the two unmixed natures of Christ. Finally, monophysitism was condemned as corruption of the holy message and the pursuit of any deviation was announced. The consequence was a split between the Byzantine (dyophysite) center and the monophysite oriental provinces, i.e. the West Syrian and Coptic Church; later on, the Armenian Church followed. The disputes about the nature of Christ also included the character of Virgin Mary. Egyptian monks claimed for Mary the same adoration as for God Father and God Son. In 428, Nestorios (→ Nestorians) (381-451), who was educated in Antiochia (→ Antiochia), was appointed Bishop of Constantinople. He insisted that Mary was only the mother of the human being Jesus and prohibited his community to adore Mary as "theotokos" (God's parturient). In 431, Emperor Theodosius II convoked an empire-wide synod to Ephesus. He supported Nestorios but was defeated. Nestorios was condemned and dispelled to the Syrian Desert. Also the Maronites (→ Maronites) originated in the 5th century. The term can be traced back to monk Maron, who lived as a hermit at the Orontes River (Syria) around 400. He found his followers in the region between Homs and Antiochia (→ Antiochia). They were persecuted since they denied monophysitism. Since the 12th century, they collaborated with the crusaders, received important privileges from them and in exchange, acknowledged the Roman Pope as their religious leader. Also the Coptic Church, the Christian Church of Egypt, emerged in the 5th century after they had disclaimed the conclusions of the Council of Chalcedon (451). They established a doctrine, which used to be considered monophysitic but in their own interpretation was miaphysitic (→ miaphysitism). The foundation of the Christian Church of the Armenians goes back to bishop Gregory the Enlightened around 300 – therefore, it used to be called "Gregorian Church" as well – and in the translation of the Bible by the Armenian Church father Mesrop (5 th century). This Church's teaching was also miaphysitic. The divine service is similar to that of the Orthodox Church; the language of the liturgy is ancient Armenian. Leader of the majority of the Armenian Church is the Katholikos in Echmiadsin in Armenia (since 1443). A minor wing of the Armenian Church was united with the Catholic Church – represented by the Armenian-Catholic Patriarch in Beirut – in the 17 th century. The Armenian population had concentrated on commercial activities and therefore, its religious communities were primarily concentrated in cities. They were numerous in the Near East and rather limited in the Balkans. Christendom was accompanied by dualistic apprehensions in the course of the middle ages. Their intellectual concept is based on their conviction of a god as an incarnation of the evil, in additional to the god of the good. Although the leaders of the Christian Churches might have been willing to debate the question of the Holy Trinity, the debate of the dualistic approach was considered a waste of time. It was damned as absolutely non-Christian. Two gods cannot exist, and the salvation of the human being cannot be separated from the incarnation of God's son. The origins of dualism are to be found in the teaching of the Persian Zoroaster (7th century BC). Zoroastrianism stands for the conviction of an existing superior god, Ahura Mazda, who is the creator of the world, the god of light and truth. The destiny of the world is decided in the battle against the forces of evil and darkness. Man has to decide for the good god, and his decision will be judged by the doom. The most important dualistic direction of the Byzantine Empire was that of the


Bogomils, which emerged in the 10th century AD still within the framework of the Bulgarian Empire, which ended in 1018. It dismissed central Christian dogmas such as Baptism. Bogomilism became widespread in the Balkans and became the Bosnian Church in late medieval times. It was strongly related to the Cathars as well as to the Albigensians in South France. The Latin Church reacted more aggressively to the "heretics" than Orthodoxy. In the 13th century, proper crusades against Cathars and Albigensians as well as Bosnian Bogomils were organized. In the area of the Orthodox Church in the Byzantine capital, the leader of the Bogomil movement, Basilius, was sent to the funeral pile in 1111, but such an abuse never happened again. Which were the basic questions that separated the Greek-Orthodox and the Catholic Church? These were ecclesio-political and theological questions; here, only one of the latter should be addressed. The central question is related to the Holy Trinity. At the Council of Nicaea (381), the bishops agreed with a common Profession of Faith. But Rome added three words: "and the Son" – the so called "filioque". "We believe … in the Holy Spirit, the uncreated Person who proceeds from the Father and the Son". The addition should make clear that Jesus was equal with the Father. This may appear as hair-splitting – but to alter Professions of Faith in theology is risky.

Islam The Prophet and enunciator, Muhammad, was born in Mecca as the son of a tradesman around 570. His father already died before his son's birth, his mother passed away when he was six months old. As a foster child, Muhammad lived with the families of his grandfather and an uncle. At the age of 29, he married the 40-year-old Hadidsha (died 620), a wealthy tradeswoman, who gave birth to six children. Later on, he would marry one of his daughters, Fatima, to his cousin Ali, who was designated as ancestor of the Shiites (→ Shiites). Mecca, at that time, was an important center of commerce, and its population was already socioeconomically differentiated in a wide range from wealthy tradesmen to slaves. We don't know very much about Muhammad's life. In religious tradition, he has been described as a meditative man, who used to retire to a cave in Mount Hira near Mecca for meditation and reflection. At the age of about 40, he allegedly had a remarkable experience. He heard a voice saying: "Read, in the name of thy Lord! Who creates, creates man from congealed blood! Read, for thy Lord is most generous! Who taught the pen! Taught man what he did not know!" (sura 96). He was convinced that these words could only be a revelation of God. Until the end of his life, he received a series of more revelations. It was his duty to proclaim them. First, he did that alone, later he was supported by his narrowest followers. Since he could neither read nor write, the revelations were written down by followers. The Koran ("lecture") is composed of these records. At the beginning, Muhammad taught his revelations only to the narrower circle of kins and friends. In 613, he gave his first public sermons. His followers constituted of young men from well-situated, although not the best-situated families of Mecca. One of his wealthy friends was Abu Bakr (573-634), who became the first Caliph (→ Caliph) and supported the emerging Islamic community financially. Similar to the case of Jesus, Muhammad's message was primarily received by people on the fringes of society: craftsmen, workers, and slaves. The Koran indicated that the rich were not as rich as they thought, since there was an almighty God above all. The latter therefore opposed the new doctrine. They argued that Mohammad was cheated by the devil. Because of the pressure exercised by the economic elite, some of Muhammad's followers left Mecca and migrated to places, where the climate was more liberal, for instance Medina. In the course of the year 622, Muslims ("believers"; "those who are submitted to God") migrated from Mecca to Medina. This


movement was called "Hijra". The Islamic Calendar begins with the first day of the Arab year, in which the Hijra took place – on June 16, 622. Medina is situated about 400 km north of Mecca in a desert oasis. It was dominated by two Arab tribes of Yemenite origin and a Jewish community. There were permanent conflicts between them, and Muslims were therefore welcome in Medina because many hoped that Muhammad would settle their conflicts. He was actually successful in establishing a treaty between the Arab tribes and the immigrated Muslims (Community Constitution of Medina). For the Jewish community, only a subordinated position was foreseen. This Community Constitution became the basis for the young Islamic state on the Arabic Peninsula, and Muhammad was acknowledged as Prophet. In the years to come, the still small Muslim community was endangered by hostile attacks; for instance, in 627, the Meccanians tried to conquer Medina but were unsuccessful. In the following years, however, the Medineans were able to occupy Mecca and clean the Caaba from fetishes, and most of the Meccanians successively became Muslims. Muhammad's tribal federation was now in a dominant position on the Arabic Peninsula. Tribes that wished to join had to convert to Islam. One of the biggest socioeconomic problems was that nomadic economy was based on predation economy. Muslim tribes were not permitted any longer to conduct raids or even wars among them. This was probably one of the reasons why Muhammad began to direct raids and warfare abroad – into the countries of the "infidels". This was the point of departure of a rapidly increasing Muslim empire. The first big campaigns were directed toward Syria and Iraq; Muhammad directed them personally. He died on June 8, 632. The followers of Muhammad collected Muhammad's revelations into suras or chapters (altogether 114). Documentation was only finished after his death in 653. The written form became necessary because people began to remember the revelation in various ways. The core of Islam is monotheism. One of the central ideas is the benevolence of the powerful God; people are called upon to be thankful and to adore him. The human will is completely dominated by God's will. What looks like actions of men is actually God's will. This does not mean that people may be misdirected. Similarly to the Genesis of the Bible, the world is considered to be created in six days. The five most important religious obligations of Muslims are confession to their belief, praying five times a day, donating alms, fasting in the month of Ramadan, and the pilgrimage to Mecca. The jihad sometimes is mentioned as the sixth pillar of Islam. The translation of the term as "Holy War" is not fully correct; it actually means "effort" or "combat". The combat is related to the historical context, in which a small community of believers had to defend themselves against many enemies. Subsequent warfare was not conducted with the intention of converting the "infidels" but in order to conquer; violent conversion was not the primary goal. Islamic theology differed from that of Christianity because from the very beginning, Islam was considered both a political and a religious community. One of the central issues of Islamic theology – whether the Koran is created or not – does not only constitute a difficult theological but also an important political question: along with other important issues, it separates the two factions of Sunnites (→ Sunnites) and Shiites (→ Shiites). The differences between Sunnites and Shiites are not easy to understand. What follows is a simplified account of a complex story. The term "sunna" (custom, handed down norms) basically signifies what Muhammad mentioned, accepted, or condemned in addition to the revelation; his closest followers reported about that. The sunna became important because the revelations were not always explicit enough. From the Sunnites' point of views, four schools of law are entitled to interpret the sunna and the Koran. In Medina, the Prophet married about one dozen women. These marriages with women from important tribes were politically motivated; they were crucial in order to preserve and extend Muhammad's power. Among them, Aisha was the only one, who still was virgin when she got married. She is considered


as his favorite wife. Despite so many wives, none of them gave birth to a surviving son; his two sons died early. Shiites (→ Shiites) (shiat-un-ali – the partisans of Ali) think that Mohammad designated his son-in-law and cousin Ali (approx. 598-661) as successor and Caliph (→ Caliph). Therefore, only he and his successors would be entitled to interpret the Koran and the sunna. Ali, however, had been ignored several times as successor and failed to be accepted. This dispute about succession mirrors the conviction that divine power could only be passed on in direct male descent. This idea obviously originates from Arabic tribal traditions, which highly appreciate male descent. Sunnite and Shiite law diverged pronouncedly in the course of time. A majority of Muslims are Sunnites (Iran is mainly Shiite while Iraq is mixed). One of the decisive points of debate is whether the Koran is created (and therefore modifiable) or not created (and therefore not modifiable). The Sunnites' approach is that the Koran is not created and the Caliphs (→ Caliph) are not inspired by God; therefore, they are not permitted to change the Holy Script. The Shiites (→ Shiites) – inspired by the Mutazilites (→ Mutazilites) – think that the Koran was created and therefore the Imams (a title restricted to Ali and his successors) who are inspired by God are permitted to change the Script. However, Shiites are divided into several factions when it comes to the question who the direct successors of Ali were. Sunnites (→ Sunnites) represent the main faction of Islam. After Muhammad's death, the question of his successor – of course not as Prophet but as successor and substitute entitled as Caliph (→ Caliph) – arose. Immediately after Muhammad's death, an assembly in Medina achieved a compromise. Abu Bakr was appointed first Caliph; he had already been appointed by Muhammad as director of ritual acts in Medina, when he fell ill. He was Mohammad's best friend, father of his favorite wife Aisha, and one of his first followers. He was in office only for two years, and this short period was characterized by many uprisings against him. Ali was crossed over another two times. He was successful only in his fourth try but became victim of assassination in 661. Now the question arose whether his son, Hassan Ibn Ali (a grandson of Muhammad) or the governor of Syria, Muawiya, would be his successor. Muawiya finally became the fifth Caliph and founder of the Umayyad dynasty. After his death, Hassan's younger brother, Hussein, attempted to take over the Caliphate. In a forlorn battle, however, he was killed by his superior Umayyad opponents. He – confronted with free choice – decided allegedly against any compromise and in favor of martyr: better to die for the true belief than to betray Islam. One of Hussein's sons survived the battle and could therefore succeed after Muhammad. First indications of a religious division became visible. Only two centuries after the original debate about Muhammad's succession, Sunnites (→ Sunnites) and Shiites (→ Shiites) definitely split into two directions: for the Sunnites, all four Caliphs (→ Caliph) up to Ali were "guided by law", the Shiites however, only acknowledged Ali as legitimate successor. Muhammad's combatants made heavy mistakes by voting three times for other persons as Caliphs. Ali would have been the only one, to whom Muhammad explained the essential meaning of Islam; therefore, he was primarily permitted to interpret God's message. Similar to the "filioque" only a few words became decisive for the split into two parties. The Shiites extended the Koranic Profession of Faith "There is no other God beside God. And Muhammad is His prophet" with the addition "and Ali is God's friend". Therefore, for them, the Koran is created and not un-created. Shiites provided the leaders of the descent group of the Caliph Ali with the title "Imam". The "True Imam" would have inherited the ability from the Prophet to always do right and to be infallible. Judaism – Christianity – Islam What are the differences between the three Abrahamitic religions? The differences should not be exaggerated; they are pronounced by all three denominations in order to establish firm borders between


them. In the eyes of Muslims, the existence of four Christian evangelists and the late fixation of their evangels (Mark forty years after, Matthew, Luke, and John sixty to seventy years after Jesus' death) are hardly comprehensible. How many inaccuracies might have been the consequence? The final version of the New Testament was only fixed about 300 years after the death of Jesus; this was followed by several councils, which partly revised the New Testament. Moreover, the New Testament is not even available in the language of Jesus – in Aramaic (→ Aramaic). The Bible therefore constitutes a creation, as opposed to the Koran, which would be non-created. Muhammad however, represents a message that was given immediately and prayed without any change. He was selected by God to announce God's message once again and finally in original purity. Muhammad, in this way, puts himself into the series of Biblical figures such as Adam and Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Joseph and his brothers, Moses and Aaron, Elias, the kings David and Salomon, as well as Ezra and Jesus. One of Judaism's and Christianity's decisive errors would have been the deification of their Prophets (Jews: Ezra was God's son; Christians: Jesus was God's son). However, except for the one God, no other God existed. Muhammad would only announce Abraham's original belief. Muhammad was God's messenger. Muhammad accused the Jews of denying Jesus as God's Prophet, the Christians he accused of polytheism because of the trinity of God Father, Jesus as God's son (he was man and God at the same time), and the Holy Spirit as third nature. Beyond that, Jesus could not release manhood by his crucifixion. No man was able to do that but only God. Muhammad confessed to Jewish and Christian traditions but considered them as wrong transmission. The true prophets were Abraham, Moses, Jesus (Saint Peter created a Christian theology, which had nothing to do with Jesus), and Muhammad as the "Seal of the Prophets" – thus, the last Prophet. Torah and New Testament already had formulated some truths of the Koran but also fixed wrong things. Despite these reservations, Muslim empires practiced a certain tolerance toward Christians and Jews. Among the "infidels" they enjoyed an exceptional status as proprietors of a Holy Script. Since there was only one God, they must have believed in the same one; therefore, they were not allowed to be converted to Islam by force but only by peaceful dialogue. In case they were not successful, Muslims had to accept the "spoiled" belief. Koran orders in verse 29:46: "Do not argue with the people of the scripture except in the nicest possible manner – unless they transgress – and say, ‘We believe in what was revealed to us and in what was revealed to you, and our god and your god is one and the same; to Him we are submitters.'" Hindi or Buddhists, as well as adherents of natural religions, were combated and their religious buildings destroyed. "Infidel" proprietors of a Script should only be combated as long as they (as subjects of second class) did not pay humble tributes. They were considered as "dhimmi" – as wards –, which had to be protected against hostilities and whose religion had to be protected. In exchange, loyalty had to be expected. In the period of classical Islam (8th – 13th century) social advancement of "infidels" was possible; for instance in academies (Damascus, Cairo, Baghdad, Isfahan, or Cordoba), as counselors and masterbuilders in the services of Caliphs (→ Caliph) and Sultans (such as John from Damascus, born around 650), or as "ministers". These orders of tolerance, however, were narrowed afterwards and lost additional relevance in the colonial period. An important problem for all three confessions was abortion and contraception. The big religions supported the desire for numerous successors. They had emerged in a world, in which periodical population decrease was considered a problem. The old Jewish laws adopted an outspoken positive posture regarding procreation. Each Jew should give birth to at least two children in order to guarantee the continuance of the nation. Contraception therefore constituted a taboo; coitus interruptus was considered as minor infanticide ("it is forbidden to destroy the semen"). Only with the Pill, a method was at hand that did not destroy the semen but still prevented pregnancy. However, a few Rabbis suggested contraception by coitus interruptus


and impregnated pessaries in case of a threat for mother and child through pregnancy. Such devices should be used by juveniles, pregnant and breastfeeding women. Also, the cleansing of the vagina after intercourse was recommended. The Talmud-Rabbi Laws, too, recommended numerous successions. In the centuries of Diaspora with its dispersed, small Jewish communities, this idea was kept upright as well as after the establishment of the Israeli state. However, because of Israel's dense population, a population increase, which causes scarcity of water and rapidly increasing settlements, constitutes a serious problem. The question arises whether Jews because of their history and pogroms are exempt from the negative consequences of population increase. The debate about abortion is very difficult. In religious tradition, abortion means a crisis as well as a failure in private and public responsibility. The moral legitimization of such an act is at stake. The discourse upon abortion is characterized by a traditional understanding of the body, the topic of forbidden sexual relations, the question of health, and by the question of the woman's role in society. In religious tradition, the moral aspect is of relevance, not the medical one. The central moral question concerns the status of the embryo between conception and birth. Does it constitute a complete "souled" human being from the very beginning? In this case, abortion is homicide. In the case of a threat of mother and/or the fetus, however, abortion is not only permitted but considered an obligation. Early Christianity strictly forbade contraceptive devices and sexual intercourse during pregnancy. Similar to Judaism, abortion was considered homicide. Thomas from Aquinas' (1225-1274) attitude is representative for the Catholic Church. In his "Summa Theologica", he judged birth control as an act against nature and therefore as morally wrong and a sin. Only Pope Sixtus V in 1588 equated contraception and abortion with homicide, which were then theoretically punished with excommunication. In 1930, Pope Pius XI differentiated between contraception and sterilization on the one hand as sin against nature, and abortion on the other hand as sin against human life. Only in 1951 did the Catholic Church formally accept the rhythm method. All "unnatural" methods are still not allowed, nor is abortion. Nowadays, the Church at least acknowledges that population growth has reached its ecological limits. The Koran does not address contraception; therefore, the opinion of Islamic scholars became important. Pre-modern Islamic law did not oppose contraception and tolerated abortion. While in Christianity, sexuality was allowed only in monogamous and life-long marriage, Islam allowed sex in polygamous version as well as in concubinage. This could have been one of the reasons for the interest in birth control. Islam could consider contraception calmly because of the prevailing idea that, if God's will was to create something, the human being could not hinder that. There could have been many justified reasons for contraception: woman's beauty should not suffer from frequent birthing; a slave once impregnated could not be sold any longer, etc. In absence of any necessity, contraception was blameful yet not prohibited. What was important was that a free woman agreed because she enjoyed the basic right of giving birth to children and of sexual fulfillment, which was disturbed in the case of coitus interruptus. Basically, all law schools agreed with that position. Islamic regulations of abortion for a long time were based on ancient knowledge, namely that man and woman created a child and the fetus developed in stages. Only after the fourth month of pregnancy, the creature was complete. Most of the jurists therefore prohibited abortion after four months. Contraception (also of women) was privileged over abortion. The main text concerning contraception and abortion is from Rhazes (→ Rhazes) (approx. 864-921) and is included in his book "Liber Contines". He was director of a big hospital in Baghdad, which he co-founded, and an excellent clinician and philosopher. He knew 176 contraceptives and abortion regulations. The main technique of woman's contraception consisted in the introduction of a pessary into the vagina, in order to prevent the penetration of the sperm. Present prevailing pessimistic attitude toward abortion and family planning is also related to post-colonial power relations.


Family planning, contraception, and abortion are considered western concepts, which are going to be forced upon the Islamic world. The three Abrahamitic religions have different approaches in certain questions; therefore, it makes sense to point at similarities. The similarities consist in: (1) All three religious communities are book religions; they are based on revelations. Therefore, the texts of the revelations have big impact as well as their reading and interpretation. (2) The joint worship of God; for Muslims on Friday, for Jews on Saturday, and for Christians on Sunday. (3) Pilgrimages to the graves of saints, which corresponds in the Muslim world to pilgrimages to the burial places of adored religious leaders and the hadj to Mecca. (4) The impact of the religious cult personnel – in the Christian sphere, in the form of a sanctified, sacral priest, in the Muslim and Jewish spheres, in the form of a prayer leader, religious advisor, or religious scholar. The sacral role of the priest is underlined by his liturgical clothes. The exceptional role of the cleric compared to laity in western Christianity is underlined by celibacy, whereas the priest's everyday-life in Orthodoxy does not differ significantly from laity. (5) Cult places in the form of the church, mosque, and the synagogue; in contrast to Christianity, the synagogue and mosque do not constitute sacred places. They serve as temple, assembly room, and prayer hall. The sacred place of the Christian Church is devoted to sacrificial service as well as to the devotion of the sacraments. The altar therefore constitutes the sacral center of a church. The altar space in Western Church was, until the second Vatican Council, and in Eastern Church still is an isolated room reserved for the priest and his personnel. (6) The public cult acts are conducted in the sacral languages, in the languages of the Holy Script, which facilitated tendencies to preserve ancient forms of the cults; only in this way, salvation could be expected. The Western Church adhered to Latin as sacral language until the second Vatican Council. The Eastern Church was more flexible and allowed the usage for instance Romanian, Hungarian, or Albanian as sacral languages instead of Greek between the 17th and the 20th centuries. This is also an indication of the Western Church's centrality and the Eastern Church's decentralism. Among the Jews of the Ottoman Empire, who arrived from Mediterranean Europe, the Ladino of the Sephardim (on the basis of Ancient Castilian) became the common sacral language. The Holy Script was translated into Ladino in the 16 th century. Hebrew remained the actual sacral language. In the area of Islam, only Arabic was accepted as sacral language until the 20th century. Translation is considered only an approach or interpretation of the Arabic original. The three Abrahamitic religions are characterized by many similarities. At the same time, because of their Holy scripts, they became canonized and exclusive. In contrast to Buddhism for instance, one cannot belong to two religions at the same time. This encourages the tendency to establish separate worlds and facilitates conflicts. Religious differences are also considered cultural ones.

Unit 11: Religion And Society
All three Abrahamitic religions have been shaping and, to a lesser degree, still characterize societies. This vanishing religious impact on contemporary societies has basically two reasons: (1) although the Christian Churches are rooted in society in different intensity, one may not think that countries consisting of Christian majorities would be based on the fundaments of Christianity. Abortion, for instance, is permitted almost everywhere by the state. (2) Although Orthodoxy – in the case of Greece – or Catholicism – in the case for instance of Argentina – is mentioned as one of the constitutional fundaments of the country, but the separation of Church and state is reality, the Church has to look for support in society from case to case in


order to preserve its interests. This separation of the secular and religious spheres first took place in Protestant regions, later in Catholic ones, where this process had begun in the 18 th century and again later in the Orthodox world, where it only began in the 20th century. The Contemporary Christian world has become largely secularized. In the sphere of Judaism, the question of religious imprint has to be seen more differentiated. For the foundation period of the Hebrew Kingdom around 1000 BC, until the destruction of the second Temple and the beginning of the Diaspora in the 1st century AD, one could comprehend society as "jewishly" formed. In the two millennia that followed, only worldwide dispersed, stronger or weaker Jewish communities amidst non-Jewish societal contexts existed. A Jewish society began to re-emerge only by the proclamation of the state of Israel in 1948. In the case of Islam, things differ again. In general, countries with a Muslim majority are religiously imprinted; be it that Sharia, the sole basis of law, or the side-by-side existence of Islamic and secular law, or – as in the case of Turkey – the state considering itself as secular and separating worldly and religious institutions, even though its society still is strongly characterized by Islam. Islamic Countries The Islamic conquests did not change the pre-existing social and economic structures in a radical way but pre-existing structures also had an imprint on the emerging Islamic Caliphate (→ Caliphate). Non-Islamic religions were substituted by Islam only slowly. Regional and local autonomies inherited from the Byzantines and Persian Sassanids were respected and confirmed. The religious elite was only in the state of formation. The transformation of the newly occupied territories to an empire based on Islamic fundaments has to be considered as a gradual melting process of the pre-existing with the new. The conquest of highly developed societies was neither succeeded by "Barbaric" destruction nor by a complete absorption of the existing traditions. Economy and society changed only slightly. Permanent interaction let something new emerge. The little readiness of the emerging Islamic empires to convert non-Muslim adherents of book religions by force is outstanding. This was more visibly pronounced in the Balkans than in Anatolia with its Turkish population majority. Before the expansion in Anatolia in the 11th century, most of the population was Christians. In the 15th century, however, already more than 90 percent of the population was Muslim. The reason for that was partially the strong Turkish immigration; the main reason however, was the conversion to Islam, which was basically not effectuated violently but was made easier by certain measures – primarily by weakening the Orthodox Church. In the late 13th and in the course of the 14th century, the Turks confiscated church property; hospitals, orphanages, schools, and monasteries were destroyed. Islam should be made attractive by pointing at the syncretism of Muslim and Christian contents. Holy places of the Christians were adopted, and Jesus was also adored. Byzantine lords and civil servants were offered easy conversion in exchange for their inclination into the Ottoman elite. The situation in the Balkans was different. Turkish immigration here was considerably lower; here, much more than in Anatolia, the Muslims had to arrange themselves with the Christians. In the course of the 14th and 15th centuries, the first Muslims settled in Thrace, in the South Bulgarian Maritza Valley, in Northern Bulgaria, and also in Albania and Bosnia. Hundreds of villages were founded – in many cases with SufiTekkes (convents) in the center. A systematic compulsion of conversion did not exist. A census taken at the beginning of the 16th century shows that 81 percent of the Ottoman Balkan population was Christian and only 19 percent Muslim; in addition, small Jewish minorities were present. In Bosnia, the Muslim portion was highest with 45 percent of the total. The Muslim population was concentrated in the bigger cities. In Sofia, for


instance, the proportion of Muslims was 66.4 percent, whereas it was only 6 percent in the surrounding villages. The already mentioned Sufi-orders such as the Bektashi or the "dancing dervishes" played an important role for the establishment of relations between Islam and Christendom that should not be underestimated. Sufism constitutes a mystical tradition in Islam, which has its roots in the ascetic movement that won increasing impact in the 8th century; it was particularly strong in Mesopotamia and intended to oppose the secularization of Islam. By ascetic and esoteric practices, the norms of Islam were transgressed. Also common to Sufi-orders is the idea that the Koran has two layers of meaning – an internal and an external. The external is accessible for everybody and therefore less appreciated. The internal opens only to the pupils of the mystical orders by rites of initiation. Each Sufi-order formulates a specific way to the satisfaction of the desire of divine love and truth, which was based upon the teachings of a spiritual master (Sheikh). Pupils were personally related to the master, who directed the disciplinary practices of ascetics and self-humiliation in order to liberate adherents from secular longings. These Muslim orders are not comparable with those of Catholic and Orthodox Christianity because they were not obliged to celibacy and to practicing a regular monastical life in their convents; they served primarily as casual meeting points for the exercise of their mysterious practices. The most famous Sufi-order is perhaps the "dancing dervishes" – the Mevlevi. Already in the 9 th century, Sufi are documented for Baghdad to whom listening to secular music was so important that they fell into a state of ecstasy. Only the Mevlevi-order, founded in the 13th century, connected this mystic listening to dances as a ritual. Its members were obliged to train the most difficult dances before they were accepted. The dancing ritual was regulated in detail. The right hand had to be oriented towards heaven, the left towards earth; in this way, the divine blessing was received and could be passed on. While dancing on the left foot counterclockwise, they put themselves in trance and returned to this world at the end of the dance. Nowadays, the "dancing dervishes", for instance in Istanbul, have become a tourist attraction. However, also heterodox Sufi-orders existed – for instance the Bektashi – who combined popular Shiite, Sunnite, and Christian ideas with pre-Muslim ones. Originally, they intended to convert nomads to Sunnites. Having conversion in their mind, they had to adapt to the spiritual world of the nomads. Hadshi Bektash, the founder of the order in the 14th century was said to be on good terms with an Orthodox priest, who finally converted to Islam. The Bektashi did not accept the prohibition of alcohol, acknowledged an Islamic version of the Holy Trinity, and included also women into their ceremonies. For legitimization of leadership of the order, the principle of descent was important. Between the founder of the order and its actual leader, the Sheikh, an actual or at least spiritual kinship relation should exist; the son learned from his father. Moreover, it was used to establish a relation between the founder and the Prophet or his nephew Ali. Only a few of the Bektashi spent a lifetime in the convent – in most cases, the Sheikh and his family and those who had sworn celibacy. The male members usually had a profession and met in the evening of ritual holidays for their ritual exercises. Cohesion between the members was only loose. However, they had a central convent the chief Sheikh of which suggested to the sultan the Sheiks of the other convents. Even women Sheikhs were permitted. The order played a significant role among the Janissaries; many of them belonged to the order. When the Janissary units were dissolved violently in 1826, the order continued to exist only underground. Its activity was received particularly warmly among the Albanian population. Its adherents, especially since the second half of the 19th century, were pillars of the Albanian national movement, since they were able to integrate Islam and Christianity in a specific way. This was significant for the formulation of an Albanian national ideology, which was acceptable for both Christians and Muslims. The "Alevites" or "Alawites" constitute a further variety of Islam, most of the followers of which live in Turkey, but are also spread among the Kurds and Arabs (for instance in Syria). An estimated number of 12 to 20 millions of Turkish population belong to them. They are not organized as an order, are heterodox, and


strongly influenced by Shiite mysticism. They deny the Sharia, the Koran, the five foundation pillars of Islam, as well as the prohibition of alcohol. They assume that the original Koran had disappeared and the existing one has been created. Alike Christianity, they acknowledge a Holy Trinity – consisting of Allah, Muhammad, and Ali. These beliefs position them on the fringes of Islam – and in the opinion of many Sunnites, even out of Islam. However, they consider themselves as the only true Muslims. In their cult acts, women are basically equal. Their political orientation is "liberal" or "leftist" – except for the wing that is supported by Iran. In this context of confessional pluralism, the question regarding the Caliphate's role is more than justified. It should not be compared to Papacy because the Caliphs considered themselves only as successors and deputies of the Prophet but not as the deputies of God on earth. Therefore, the Pope has scholarly authority and can issue religious instructions, which the Caliphs were not authorized to do. They performed unwritten spiritual-secular leadership in the Muslim world without dominating until the 9th century. The first Caliphs had difficulties to establish control over the Arabic tribes and did not die a natural death. The Umayyad dynasty (661-750) was replaced by the Abbasid dynasty (750-1258) in a military coup. Therefore, the center was weak from the very beginning, and the Islamic Empire was extended and defended by powerful military leaders; the Bedouins paid attention to their independency. The Caliphs did not have the authority to give religious orders, since they had lost the debate with the ulama about whether the Koran was created or not. The principle of the non-created Islam deprived the Caliphs from the right to formulate confessional dogmas. The only thing they could do was to legitimize secular domination religiously. The power of the Caliphs depended therefore upon their ability to recruit successful military commanders and skilled administrators. The Seljuqs (1040-1194) were the first who completely disclaimed the spiritual sanction of their domination. They limited the power of the Caliphs in their offices as preachers and prayer leaders, and declared themselves as worldly rulers – as sultans. The above-mentioned revolts against the Umayyads originated in the Persian provinces and therefore the Caliphs' residence was moved from Damascus to Baghdad, and the leading Arab elite turned into a mixed Arabic-Persian one. Since the 11th century, Persian became the language of the TurkishAnatolian elites and language of education; access to this language was limited to a small minority; Turkish remained the everyday language. This constellation remained until the 15th century, when the Ottomans slipped into an increasing confrontation with the Persian Safavid dynasty. Arabic was the language of jurisprudence, theology, and the Koran. Believers therefore were primarily familiar with Arabic. Even in Anatolia of the 14th century, Arabic was one of the languages of communication. In the 9th century the latest, the ulamas (scholars) promoted the idea that the Koran was uncreated. The written word should have transcendent authority over human interpretations. Therefore, religious comments of the Caliphs could not become religious obligations. The Caliph was considered only executor of the will of the umma (community of believers) and not the source of belief. Although the Caliph was the head of the umma and the symbol of Muslim unity, a divergence emerged between the state and the Muslim unities. In the future, the Caliphs would represent the administrative and executive interests of Islam, and the scholars would define and interpret religion. Under the guidance of religious leaders, Islam began to develop independently from the state. This group of leading Sunni juridical scholars was formed in the 9th century. In case they achieved consensus over a disputed question, the decision was irrevocable. Unlike the late-Roman Christian emperor, who was in the position to authorize a certain opinion, an agreement of a Caliph or a sultan was no pre-condition for the validity of a decision. The state was only insofar of importance as it was needed for the realization of the Sharia. Islamic society was held together by common religious law and not by political structures. From this constellation, several variants of the relationship between state and religious institutions emerged. In the Ottoman Empire for instance, due to the identity of the Sultanate and the Caliphate in the person of the sultan, the state controlled the Muslim juridical, educational and social functions, announced


the Sheikh ul-Islam (→ Sheikh ul-Islam) and was supported by a strong ulama-bureaucracy. Religious institutions were degraded to quasi state departments. Politics and religion constituted an inseparable entity. Despite its long existence, the Ottoman Empire constituted an inhomogeneous society; it was organized as an institutionalized parallel society on a religious basis. This was much more reality in the Balkans with its high percentage of Christian population than in the Near East. In confessionally mixed cities, the population lived separated according to confessions, in separate quarters. On the level of the empire, Orthodox, Jewish, Coptic, and Armenian and other non-Muslim populations were called to selfadministration. These self-administrated bodies were called "millet" and were organized differently – according to compromises that had been achieved by the central government and the interests of the pertinent religious community. The Christian population of the Empire was predominantly Orthodox. Sultan Mehmed, the conqueror of Constantinople, appointed Gennadios Scholarios as Patriarch and thus created for the Orthodox population a head and an empire-wide authority. The Orthodox Patriarchy achieved a strengthened position after its general weakening in two aspects: (1) it was not only responsible for religious and spiritual affairs but also for administrative, financial, and civil-legal affairs; (2) its competence now extended over the previously independent Bulgarian and Serbian Churches and – at least preliminarily – over the Orthodox Churches of the Arabic world. Also for the Armenian Church, which was independent from the Orthodox Church from the early beginnings, a separate Patriarch with seat in Istanbul was appointed. The traditional seat of the Patriarchy, however, was not in Constantinople, and only few Armenians lived in the city at that time. The Patriarchs therefore suffered problems of legitimacy. Consequently, their power remained limited to Istanbul and its surrounding. Only in the 18th century, they became actually administrative heads of the Empire's entire Armenian population. It was even more difficult to establish a Jewish denominational self-administration, since after the destruction of the second Temple, Jews did not experience a generally accepted central authority and hierarchical organization. Although the position of a chief rabbi was installed for certain European Jewish communities, it was the result of rulers, whose intention was to establish an instrument of control and tax collection of Jewish communities with this kind of office. After the conquest, the first chief rabbi for Istanbul was appointed, who had no Empire-wide authority. The Jewish population therefore consisted of single communities, which enjoyed self-administration in relevant affairs. In the course of time, this system of self-administration was extended even to diversifying Christian communities and, in the 19th century, even applied to the immigrating Protestant population. When in the year of 1856, the Empire's non-Muslim population was made equal to the Muslim population, the millet system lost its meaning and function. Today, the successor states of the Ottoman Empire with a Muslim majority are more or less characterized by Islam. We can differentiate between (1) societies, in which Islam becomes visible in all social sectors (for instance Saudi-Arabia), (2) multi-religious societies with a Muslim majority (Syria and Lebanon, for instance), (3) and secular or laicist societies with an Islamic majority (such as Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Turkey, and Egypt). This more or less strong emphasis on Islam leaves visible traces on everyday life. Women in Islamic-fashioned countries for instance may only leave the home accompanied by their husband or other women. In Damascus, Istanbul, or Beirut, western-style dressed women can be met as often as women dressed in long, ankle-length skirts or coats, with wide headscarves covering hair, neck, and forehead, or women only covering hair and neck. The Koran demands only the protection of hair and neck


but not the veil (yashmak) or a cloak covering the whole body. Women covering the whole body with gauze veiled eyes are more often seen in Saudi-Arabia, in several of the Gulf States, in Yemen, and in Afghanistan. For Saudi women, the complete cover of the body abroad is not obligatory. Traditional tea and coffee houses are still the domains of men everywhere; modern pastry shops with their home-like character are however easier accessible for women. The substitution of women under the custodianship of men, which is expressed by veiling, is fixed in several verses of the Koran as God's revelation. Sharia, however, puts more emphasis on the priority of men than Koran. Muhammad obviously compromised between the complete lack of women's rights and equality, which was unthinkable in his time by conceding women for instance half of men's inheritance or half of evidentiary value before court. Today, such ideas are partially still societal reality, although the basis of law already foresees something different. Thus, for instance, legal equality of the sexes had been provided already in the Turkish constitution of 1926; however, without adapting the family law to this principle. The situation in Egypt was similar, where since 1956, the entire jurisdiction follows secular principles. In the constitution of 1980, the Sharia is mentioned as main source of legislation; this means in practice that secular laws have to be legitimized religiously. However, the family law is strongly influenced by the Sharia. President Nasser introduced women's suffrage in 1956, but hesitated to introduce equality in the existing family laws. The proportion of women participating in the first elections was only about half of one percent. Also Syria's self-understanding is a secular state. Compulsory school attendance for both the sexes (from the age of six to twelve) as well as active and passive suffrage for men and women was introduced in 1971. However, the family law for the Muslim population is still based on the Sharia. In Jordan, Islam is state religion. The Hashemite dynasty appeals to its descent from the family of the Prophet. In Yemen, the Sharia is the official source for laws; actually state law, customary law, and religious law have been mixed up. In Saudi-Arabia, the Wahhabite scholars control public life, jurisdiction, and education; all aspects of life are regulated according to the Sharia. In the Gulf States (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE), Wahhabism and more liberal forms of Islam coexist. Adaptations of the Islamic Law to changing developments are possible – for instance, in the field of banking. One essential part of the banking system on Islamic basis is the prohibition of interests and, in addition, the prohibition of trade with certain goods (such as alcohol and pork meat). A financing system on the basis of prohibition of interests already existed in early Islam's overseas commerce in the sense of profit and loss sharing (commenda/murabaha) of business partners (see Chapter 7). In 1975, the first Islamic Bank was founded in Dubai. Today, there are about 250 of such banks; among them are non-Muslim banks such as the "Islamic Bank of Britain". They are functioning well and make profits, which is due to a series of Islamic contract templates. The most important contract template is the "murabaha": somebody borrows money from a bank indirectly in order to make an investment. The bank itself makes the investment and the customer buys the object of investments in rates at a higher price from the bank; the goods can also be leased. Several of the legal scholars have objections against this procedure and argue that the higher repurchase value would finally constitute an interest profit. Several banks actually concede credits without interests to social projects or students – yet often enough only if they already have other bank deposits. Islamic stock funds do not invest into the production of military goods, pornography, alcohol, tobacco, gambling, and pork meat. Jewish Communities The book "Genesis" is the most important source for the reconstruction of the ancient Hebrew society. It was written down from the 10th to the 5th century. The documentation began in the southern Kingdom of Judah. The early Genesis reflects patriarchally-oriented nomadic and semi-nomadic tribes. Several related families


constituted a "mishpahah" – a descent group. This group cooperated economically, had a common ancestor, and celebrated religious feasts jointly. Its members were considered blood kin and were obliged to blood revenge in serious conflicts. This description is obviously related to the first half of the 2nd millennium. The household head had absolute authority over his family members. In the Ten Commands, the wife is listed together with his property. If they did not have a son, a daughter could inherit but had to marry another member of her tribe in order to keep the heritage within the kinship group. The levirate marriage – the marriage of a man with the widow of his brother, who died childless – served a similar purpose. Heritage and descent ideology were organized in a patrilineal way; women had to marry out into the household of the groom's father and remained in the household until the death of the father. A bride-price was paid to the bride's family, and the bride was equipped with a marriage portion. Whereas men enjoyed sexual freedom with unmarried women, the woman's betrothal was sanctioned with death penalty. A man who raped a woman had to marry her and was not allowed to divorce her. After the failed insurrections against Roman domination (66-70 and 132-35), the Jewish population was displaced from its homeland and lived in the Diaspora dispersed in the entire Roman Empire and even beyond its borders. Emperor Hadrian (117-138) forbade them to ever return to Jerusalem and its surroundings. They were dispersed over Palestine and Syria; in Europe, their primary destinations were the cities of Macedonia, Greece, Thrace, and in the Balkans; in South West Europe, they targeted Italy, Sicily, Sardinia, as well as Malta and later Spain, Gallia, and Germania. Outside the Roman Empire, they settled primarily in Armenia at the northern coast of the Black Sea. They usually occupied separate city quarters with a synagogue as communal center. The Jewish communities were organized independently from each other. A central and hierarchically oriented leadership was missing. With the destruction of the second Temple in 70 AD, the office of the chief priest vanished; also the divine service could not be held any longer, since it was bound to the Temple. The synagogue, the Rabbi, as well as the religious scripts became central in the Diaspora. The Torah became the strongest brace. It constituted of five books (therefore also called "Pentateuch"), which Moses received on Mount Sinai from Yahweh. Caused by pursuits, the Rabbis began to document the doctrine in order to prevent it from demise. In addition to the orally transmitted Torah, the Mishnah (duplicate) was edited. This way, Judaism became a book religion. Scholars interpreted the Script and enhanced it. The synagogue became a place of Torah scholarship as well as a prayer- and meeting room. The oral explanations of God to Moses together with scholarly interpretations were summarized in the Talmud around 500 AD. Of the two versions – the older Palestine and the early medieval Babylonian Talmud – the latter became valid for Europe, North Africa, and the Near East as the book of law. Since a central authority did not exist, Jewish communities separated into diverse intellectual directions. The split of the Karaites in the 8th century became religiously important; they do not acknowledge the Talmud and accept only the Torah. This wing that originally found support in Anatolia and in the Black Sea region, has been marginalized in the course of time. Today, only several enclaves exist worldwide (especially in Lithuania and the Ukraine); in Israel, they are classified as "non-believing Jews". The division of Ashkenazim and Sephardim became culturally important. The origins of these terms have been interpreted differently. Since the medieval ages, the Jewish population of Central, East Central and Eastern Europe was called Ashkenazim. The term is derived from the mountainous regions at the upper Euphrates, where the majority of Jewish population settled when it was in the "Babylonian Exile". They adhered to the liturgical tradition, which emerged in the Exile. The "Pious from Ashkenaz" group became religiously and spiritually important for Ashkenazi identity, which – caused by the pogrom in the period of the crusades – founded the glorification of martyrdom. Also, the decision in favor of monogamy around 1000 became important for identity. The majority of Sephardim had Spanish-Maurice background. They adhered to the liturgical tradition of Judea, which was advanced in Spanish exile. In questions of faith, there are no differences between these two groups. The differences are related to cultural habits, the rite, the


interpretation of the Biblical order, and the pronunciation of Hebrew. Since nobody had knowledge of the pronunciation of Biblical Hebrew, different pronunciations of Central European and Spanish Jews emerged. The Jewish population was forced to adapt to various environments; but Sabbath rest, food orders, and external appearance produced exclusivity in everyday life and evoked aggression. Dispossession, ritual stoning, and physical penalizations in Christian contexts were frequent consequences. The relationship between Jews and Muslims were generally better. Also Christian "Reconquista" (→ re-conquest) of the Iberian Peninsula from Arab domination was followed by repressions of the Jewish population. A majority of Sephardim migrated – mainly in the years between 1492 and 1512 – to the Ottoman Empire, which strove for economic impulses. After displacement from Spain, the Jewish population of Portugal, the Kingdom of Navarre, and in several Italian cities, came under severe pressure. A population census taken in 1608 in Istanbul counted 539 Sephardic houses – about one quarter of the city's Jewish population. Also Edirne and Thessalonica comprised bigger Jewish communities. Jews enjoyed religious freedom and free movement, free choice of residence, communal autonomy, the permission to exercise almost every profession, and were released from paying certain taxes and fees. However, they were forced to be specially dressed. In 1911-12, about 350,000 Jews lived in the Ottoman Empire, who were concentrated in the European parts, especially in Thessalonica, Istanbul, West Anatolia, Syria, and Iraq. The Jewish population of the young Republic of Turkey was only about 82,000 (1927). Thessalonica – an original Jewish community was rooted in the period of Hellenism – with its about 60 synagogues that constituted the center of Sephardic Judaism was the only European city with a Jewish majority in early modern age. According to a statistic from 1518, the population comprised about 1350 Muslim, 1110 Christian, and 3150 Jewish families, and even before the Balkan Wars (1912/13), Jews were the majority. They called the city "Israel's Mother". Because of their different contexts of origins, different rites, prayers, and liturgies, they were organized in separate communities. By the end of the 19th century, the Jewish population in Palestine was only about ten percent; the majority was Arabs. The majority was Jewish only in Jerusalem. The Zionist movement, which was strengthened at that time by the general anti-Semitism in Europe and the programmatic book of Theodore Herzl "Der Judenstaat" (The Jewish State) openly claimed a Jewish homeland in the "promised land Israel". The support of England, which had established colonial rule in 1917 but precipitately detracted Palestine in 1947, paved the way for the establishment of Israel after a bloody war with the Arab neighbors and the ArabPalestine population. The Jews, therefore, could restart where they had ended almost two millennia ago. The creation of the new state was not in accordance with the Arab neighboring states, which therefore did not (and partially still do not) acknowledge Israel's right of existence, even though it meanwhile comprises about 40 percent to the world's Jewish population. Two thousand years of Diaspora, persecution, and adaptation to various cultures made it difficult from the very beginning to establish internal consensus in the question regarding the state's character. Should it become a "Jewish state" the institutions of which would be formed according to Jewish traditions or should it become a "State of Jews" as a homeland for Jews and other citizens, where everybody was free and could live without fear of persecution? This dispute still crosses society and Zionist movement. Roughly spoken, Jews in this question are divided into secularists and traditionalists. Secular Zionism claims Jews a nation, which – along with other nations – has the right of self-determination. Many religious Zionists oppose the concept of a secular nation; they claim that religion and related traditions constitute central values of Judaism. The state would be responsible for preserving and promoting the Jewish heritage. The Jews would constitute a nation, not the population of Israel. This confrontation has not yet come to a final result and political reality is situated somewhere in between the two poles. This is one of the most important reasons for Israel to treat the West Bank and the


Gaza Strip as occupied territories and not to absorb them into the state; the consequence of the latter would be that the proportion of Arab population would raise significantly, which would undermine the idea of a religiously based Jewish state automatically. Therefore, the idea of an independent Palestine state enjoys massive support from a considerable part of Israel's society. Eastern Christianity The Edict of Milan issued in 313 and signed by the emperor Constantine (306-337) and his co-emperor Licinius (308-324) acknowledged freedom of religion for the entire population of the Empire; Constantine had converted to Christendom already one year before. He reserved for himself the right of supervision of the pre-Christian cult and priesthood and presided personally over the Council of Nicaea (325). As far as they were compatible with Christendom, he allowed the pagan cults. Several temples were closed. When he agreed for Constantinople to be rearranged as new capital of the Empire, the gold jewelry of the sanctuaries, for instance of Ephesus and Delphi, were used for funding. In 380, emperor Theodosius I (379-394) made Christianity the exclusive religion of the Empire and began to pursue non-Christians. In 391, he prohibited Romans and in 392 Alexandrians to attend temples and to sacrifice. In the same year, he prohibited every non-Christian act of cult. Blood sacrifices were considered lèse majesty. Places of worship were closed or transformed into churches, or were plundered and destroyed by Christians. This was also the end of the Olympic Games. In 393, they took place for the last time before they were reopened in 1896 in a completely different context. In contrast to Islam, in the Byzantine Empire as well as in the other Orthodox Empires and countries, the spiritual sphere was subjugated by the worldly sphere. By doing so, the emperors of the East continued the Augustinian imperial idea, according to which the emperor was also Pontifex Maximus, the chief priest, who had responsibility for spiritual affairs as well. The Church had to take care of the spiritual affairs exclusively and was not allowed to intervene in worldly affairs. The emperors were considered as absolutistic monarchs and godlike. Imperial dominance became for instance visible on the occasion of the election of the Patriarch of Constantinople. The emperor could accept the proposal or make his own suggestion. A candidate could hardly be installed against the will of the emperor since he chaired the Holy Synod in the case of vacancy. Several Patriarchs were abdicated or banned by emperors. Monotheism and Augustinian imperial idea completed each another. Since the 6th century, the Byzantine emperors included the phrase "priest and king" in their title, although they did not act as priests. The submission of the Orthodox Church under the secular power fuelled the separation into national Churches. Practically each emerging Orthodox state creates its own nation Church. Nowadays, this is especially true with Macedonia and Montenegro, the Churches of which are eager to separate from the Serbian Patriarchate. Emperor Constantine defined political domination anew. The Council of Nicaea (325) under his supervision concluded that Jesus Christ was equal to God. In this way, the position of the godlike – one who is subordinated to God and obliged to obedience – became vacant for the emperor. Since Constantine, all Byzantine emperors considered themselves as chosen by God. As God's substitute on Earth, the emperor's function was therefore universal. His responsibility extended to Christians and non-Christians equally, within and beyond the Empire's borders. It belonged to their self-understanding that the emperors stood above everything including the law. Several of them underlined that they had not taken advantage of this position; they were no tyrants. At their coronation, the emperors swore not to deviate from true faith. If they actually did, God deprived them of his support and an abdication was justified. A precondition, however, was the excommunication by the Patriarch – an anything but harmless decision. Since the 8th century, the dynastic idea could be accomplished; at the same time, the imperial idea became increasingly sacral. The term "porphyrogennetos" (who was given birth in purple) came into use.


This expresses the legitimate right of succession by an emperor's son. The right of primogeniture was also accomplished. Membership in the Church and Christianity was only possible by baptism, which on the other hand made the Church responsible for the spiritual well-being of the baptized. It considered itself as caretaker for the public and the individual moral. The rites de passage from one period of life to the other was marked by Christian ceremonies. In this way, the Church was able to control family life to a certain extent. This relation was therefore primarily a formalized and legal one, which had nothing to do with faith. Marriage law was considered a state affair. Since marriage was subject to civil law and constituted a sacrament as well, competences of the Church and the civil administration actually merged. The Patriarchs, however, tried to bring marriage under their control successively. Already at the beginning of the 10 th century, Emperor Leo the Sage (886-912) tried by a series of edicts to bring the marriage law, which had been formulated in Roman time, in accordance with Christian ideals. Thus, for instance, a wedding ceremony in the church was not foreseen. From then on, such a ceremony was a precondition for the validity of a marriage. This underlined the role of the Church and the sacramental character of a marriage contract. Interesting, but because of his own difficulties in marriage not surprising, is an edict that allowed two remarriages under certain circumstances. The concubinage – a heritage of the Roman Empire – was declared invalid. A betrothal had to be sanctioned by the Church – but only when concluded at marriageable age. A betrothal not sanctioned by the Church, however, was allowed to be concluded already at the age of seven. Since the 12th century, the Church increased control of marriage life. It was ordered that men and women had to abstain from sexual intercourse three days before receiving the Holy Communion. It was common that a freshly married couple received the Communion shortly after wedding. The opinion of the general public was that marriage was only valid after its consummation. The Church, however, tried to intervene by stating that not the fleshly enjoyment but the blessing of the Church made a marriage valid. From the Church's perspective, marriage law was an ideal point of departure for the implementation of Christian ideals as it was also supported by the state and its institutions. This privilege remained valid during the entire Ottoman period and was underlined also by the emerging national states in the course of the 19th and early 20th centuries. In countries that established socialist regimes, the Orthodox Church was immediately forced to give up this role in order for it to be substituted by the state and the party. In Greece, however, the Orthodox Church was able to keep its bastions for an additional period of time. Nevertheless, its sphere of influence decreased considerably, when in 1982 civil marriage, by the end of the 1980s abortion, and in 2008, non-obligatory religious instruction in schools was enforced against considerable opposition from the Church's part. Permanent control of Christian souls also seemed to be necessary because the human being was considered to be in permanent danger to transcend the borders of religious thinking and to accept popular religious ideas or even heretic thoughts. This is a good example of the Orthodox Church's inability to enforce its ideals more efficiently than Latin Church with its pronounced hierarchical and centralistic structure. The Orthodox Church, however, did not practice the shrift, which was tremendously important as an instrument for controlling the souls. Public preaches were not conducted either. Therefore, it had to accept compromises with pre-Christian practices. This was especially the case in hardly accessible, mountainous regions of the Western Balkans but also on certain Aegean islands, where demonology was absorbed by the Orthodox Church from the Hellenistic period. Here, pre-Christian practices could hardly prevail – for instance, in the case of ancestor worship in the Western Balkan regions. This cult of worshipping the ancestors and the complete male descent line was not in line with the Christian denominations; it was only allowed to worship God and the saints but not possibly pagan ancestors. However, this practice was widespread in these regions and could not be eradicated. The success of the Church manifested itself only in the superficial substitution of these practices by a Christian ritual, in which one of the saints was


worshipped as patron saint instead of an ancestor. Therefore, it is not completely surprising that the feast of the patron saint still in the course of the 20th century constituted the most important feast in the course of the year – even more than Christmas and Easter. The Christian world organized in this way became disordered by the Ottoman conquests. To be dominated by a Muslim state, however, was possibly not as bad as suspected. There was no Christian emperor anymore – but life did not change basically. Pre-existing Church hierarchy was allowed to be continued as well as the Byzantine marriage laws. The Patriarchs were now appointed by Muslim sultans and became – instead of the emperors – decisive figures in spiritual as well as in worldly questions. The Patriarchs even took advantage from the new constellation because all Orthodox communities were now united under their control, although the long-lasting union of state and Church was lost. Appointed by the sultan, the new Patriarch – the last one under Byzantine control had left the country to Italy – received guaranty of complete freedom of move and taxation as well as personal inviolability. The existing Church hierarchy remained unchanged and the Holy Synod was allowed to appoint Orthodox dignitaries. No bishop was allowed to be arrested without the Patriarch's approval. Church courts kept complete jurisdiction, especially in marriage affairs. The Patriarch was allowed to collect special taxes for religious purposes. In return, he had to provide for his herd's loyalty vis-à-vis the new government and for the payment of taxes to the state. The duties of the Patriarchate increased, and the Patriarchs as ethnarchs were busier in worldly affairs than before. This embeddedness in the Ottoman structure of rule is one of the reasons why the Orthodox Church, but also the Oriental Churches, were saved from the spark of reformation caused by the Latin Church in the West. For the Orthodox population, the Church and its hierarchy had proved to be a guarantor of preservation of religious identity. If there was a reason for dissatisfaction, it was the domination by Islam but not the own Church. In everyday practice, however, Christians and Jews suffered certain obstacles. Now they needed permission for the establishment of a new church or synagogue, and even for their reconstruction. They had to be clothed in certain dresses and were neither allowed to ride horses, carry weapons, nor to serve in the army. The Ottoman Empire for sure was no rule of law, and arbitrariness toward the "infidels" was more frequent than endurable; in Bosnia and in the Albanian areas, the majority of the population converted to Islam. The Christian and Jewish communities remained, and several individuals were extremely successful as traders or bankers. The Orthodox and Catholic Church as well as Jewish communities kept an impact on their respective communities and had the opportunity to form them in their way. In this context, Christian and Jewish worlds survived despite half a millennium of Islamic domination.

Unit 12: Body And Body Consciousness
From the very beginning, people were forced to deal with their body since it involves fundamental questions: transience and death, birth and reproduction, sickness, pain, and suffering, sex and the specifics of the male and female body, the relation between the interior of the body (the gastric) and its external appearance, and the relation between the body and the soul. Various methods developed in order to dispose of physicality and to achieve a pure state of mind. The surface of the body offers itself as a projection screen for desires, wishes, ideals of beauty, and sexual needs – as well as for the formulation of taboos, prohibition of nudeness, and commands to cover. For religions and pre-religious images of gods, the body-soul relation is central. How to imagine invisible gods? May and should one make a bodily image of them? Or do they constitute an invisible source of energy and power? Can God preliminarily become man in order to rescue human kind through his death? How to evaluate the dead? Do they continue life in an invisible state or does death transform them into abstract souls?


This chapter cannot address all these important issues. It will address the knowledge of ancient medicine as well as the attitude of the three book religions in regard to the body, because they have coined peoples' notions for centuries. We will examine this and the attitude of the three book religions in regard to sexuality. Moreover, several religious trends related to body and soul will be presented. Within this context, also the imagined relationship between the body and its image has also to be analyzed. Can the unlasting body achieve infinity once it is fixed to an image – and is it allowed to create a picture of God? Discovering The Body Although modern medicine has made considerable progress in the course of the previous two centuries and discovered more about the body than in the millennia before, the causes of several sicknesses as well as the complex coactions of the body's organs and their dependency on psyche are still unresolved. In times before X-ray technology and computer tomography, doctors had to rely on the opening of the body and dissection in order to discover more about the organs. The origins of interest for the body are to be found millennia ago. A first and early milestone in medical history was set about two and a half millennia ago – in the classical period of ancient Greece (→ ancient Greece). Greek medicine as a science began to develop during the 5th and 4th centuries. The first treatises date from about 430 and have been ascribed to the doctor and physician Hippocrates from Kos (approx. 460-377) (→ Hippocrates). He is considered founder of medicine as a science. The core of texts, which are ascribed to him as "Corpus Hippocraticum", are most probably his work yet not the complete essay. His maxims are still or again valid: The patient has to be seen holistically; many healing processes take place in a natural way; simple nutrition leads to a good state of health; the doctor is committed to the patient and not to himself. Despite all the realizations of Hippocrates and his pupils, people in that time still believed in wondrous and magic healing and in a theurgic concept of medicine, according to which health and sickness are exposed to divine influences and in the intermediation of the divine will at divine localities, through a priest-doctor. One of the earliest healing cults was the Asclepius cult. According to mythology, Asclepius was one of Apollo's sons. Among Asclepius's healing children was Hygieia (from whom the term "hygiene" is derived). This cult of healing emerged in the 7 th century and may have been spread throughout Greece in the 4th-3rd centuries. Prayers, sacrifices, baths, and the temple sleep belonged to the therapeutic methods. Hippocratic medicine included for the first time – unlike Babylonian and Egyptian medicine – nutrition, gymnastics, and hygiene in its teaching. It also included details such as sleeping hours, daily routine, beverages, sexual intercourse, physical as well as psychical training. The Hippocratic texts were probably collected in the center of medical science of those days: in the Egyptian city of Alexandria. Hippocrates and others laid the basis for the greatest doctor of antiquity – Galen (Galenus, Galenos from Pergamon) (129-216). He is known as the founding father of experimental physiology. As a dedicated dissector, he used animals for his experiments and discovered several functions of the liver, the heart, the brain, and the stomach. He left a 15-volume anatomical work, the "Ars Medica". Therapeutic methods included venesection, emetics and laxatives, the support of diuresis and dietetic measures. In Galen's time, medical training comprised anatomy, pharmacology, arithmetic, rhetoric, astrology, grammar, and philosophy. The Hippocratic treatises stipulated the basically different nature of the male and female body. They would have a different humor- and temperature regulation. The female body was considered damper, weaker, and with a moving uterus. Therefore, a separate medical discipline emerged – gynecology. This two-body model was substituted by the Aristotelian one-body model, according to which male and female


organs, including sex organs, have their respective equivalent; the only difference was that the female sex organs were turned inside and the male ones outside. The vagina was interpreted as internal penis, the uterus as scrotum; sperm, menstruation blood and mother's milk constituted different variants of one and the same bodily fluid. For procreation, also women needed an orgasm, although with "minor heat". Menstruation blood was the turning point of the Hippocratic and Aristotelian theories about the differences between men and women. These differences are manifested in the permanent collection of blood in the body and the extraction from the woman's body. Not even healthy women could avoid that. Menstruation blood allegedly poisoned the woman's body; therefore, menstruation also was called "catharsis" – healthful purification. Surprisingly, the other medical literature did not concentrate on this topic, although it was no taboo. Hippocrates and Aristotle even advised men to have sexual intercourse with women during their period. Women were still allowed to have contact with food. Also in the holy laws of the classical period, they were treated equally. Inequality began only in Hellenism, when laws were passed, which forbade menstruating women to enter holy quarters. Early Christianity's attitude was similar. Even today, the Orthodox Church forbids the reception of the Holy Communion for menstruating women. In 735, the Latin Church, however, came to the conclusion that menstruating women had to be permitted to attend service and to receive the Holy Communion since their monthly period could not be considered their fault. But sexual intercourse during the period still was considered a sin. One of the reasons for menstruation being a taboo can be found in the Old Testament (3 rd book of Moses), according to which a menstruating woman had to be segregated for seven days, and only after another seven days were they considered clean. According to the teachings of Islam, every expulsion of the body is considered unclean – including menstruation blood. Women are basically considered unclean for the duration of menstruation and are prohibited to touch the Koran, to pray, to feast, and to have sexual intercourse. The Hippocratic texts show that menstruation was considered pathologic and needed treatment: young women were advised to marry early and widows were suggested to become pregnant; unmarried women showed, according to general medical doctrine, symptoms of epilepsies, which could result in suicide by hanging. If a young woman did not marry in time, blood could not flow out, because the exit was closed by the hymen. Blood subsequently flew from the heart to the diaphragm, which caused delirium, fear of darkness and visions. If there were no symptomatic visions, these women developed an erotic relation to death. A rapid pregnancy could have a healing effect; sterile women, however, predominantly suffered under these symptoms. A delayed first bleeding could consequently lead to mental problems. The absence of bleeding could result in the migration of the uterus to another body region. This could cause hysteria, the loss of voice, and asphyxia attacks. Roman doctors thought that defloration should not happen before the first menstruation. The relation between fertility and menstruation would not be clarified until the 19th century. As already mentioned in Chapter 6, the emerging Christian worldview constituted a remarkable break for the advancement of medicine. Christianity assessed the scientifically guided analysis of the body negatively and pointed at belief and prayer as healing methods. This attitude was more pronounced in the West than in the East. In the Byzantine Empire, medical research did not dry out completely. Early Islam received ancient knowledge curiously and advanced it until about the 13th century, when curiosity slowly declined. In Islamic-Christian-Jewish Spain, numerous medical treatises were translated into Latin and therefore constituted an important basis for scientific advancement, when the interest in antiquity emerged again in the Renaissance and scientists began to free themselves from the theocentric view of the world. Naked And Covered Bodies The question of nakedness and shame originally was not related to the great script religions but was already decided in the millennia before by the establishment of taboos and shame borders. Religion could only


strengthen existing tendencies. Physical shames were widespread in Egypt as well as in ancient oriental cultures; total denudation served the humiliation of the defeated enemy. Also the Greeks exposed undressed men and women in conquered territories to the public as metaphors for humiliation. Also in Homeric times, total nudity was considered obscene. The sex organs had to be covered bashfully. The depiction of naked bodies was therefore avoided. Greek antiquity allowed nakedness only in certain (ideal) situations. The many sculptures of naked men and women in Greek art should not misrepresent the fact that in reality, nakedness was limited to the area of sports and was accurately regulated. In Attica, the penis was usually fixed by a cord, which was again fixed to a belt with the intention to make the glans ("clubs" = FARBE IM KARTENSPIEL!) invisible; visible glans were considered shameless. Because of men's far-reaching nudity at sport events, women were not allowed to attend Olympic Games. Women's nudity was only allowed at sports events in Sparta and was limited by a short, slotted sport costume. The Romans were even more prudish. For them, nudity was a Greek phenomenon that they considered dishonorable. Christian art largely avoided the disposition of naked corpuses. Especially since early Christianity, women's clothing became a symbol for modesty; virgins should even be veiled. The extensive covering of the female body has a long tradition. Assyrian Law (13th-10th centuries) had already stipulated that a slave was not allowed to veil. A woman-slave, who was caught carrying the veil, should be unveiled and her ears cut off. The veil was a symbol for a married woman. Women, who were not under sexual control of a husband, were not allowed to be veiled. This tradition was accepted by Islam more openly than by Christianity and was in no way considered discriminating. For women, basically the whole body was considered a region of shame; for men, only the section between body belt and knee. In the Ottoman Empire, even non-Muslim women were dressed like their Muslim counterparts. Non-Muslim women in the Balkans and in Istanbul did not cover their faces completely. Armenian women in the Caucasus and Eastern Anatolia were veiled like Muslims. The Ottoman government, especially in Istanbul, was anxious about the modest behavior of Muslim women, who were affected by European women of the European quarter of Pera. In the 18th century for instance, it was definitely forbidden for women to copy the dressing of "non-believers" – especially their headdress. Whereas women of the lower and middle class were covered from head to toe, upper-class women of the Palace enjoyed greater liberty, which was even extended in the course of the 19 th century. Around 1900, unveiled women strolled around Istanbul – thus demonstrating their European orientation and that of their husbands. In post-Ottoman period in Turkey as well as in the other successor states of the Ottoman Empire, secular elites began to prevail – be it in the form of Kemalists (→ Kemalism) in Turkey, or in the form of English or French colonial elites in the Near East. Their program included the liberation of women from patriarchal traditions, the symbol of which was the veiling of the whole body. The anyhow weakly formed Muslim commercial bourgeoisie was kept from decisive positions. Until about the 1970s, the situation had changed but slowly. The Islamic elites meanwhile could recover economically and began to vehemently claim their integration into societal life. This also included – combined with post-colonial criticism – the observance of Islamic dressing orders. Interestingly enough, this is not only a men's claim but receives support also from the women of the avant-garde, such as university students – for instance in Turkey. For them, this claim is no step back to outmoded traditions but the result of new interpretations of Islam by immigrating and newly established urban strata. Young women intend to oppose western modernity to an Islamic modernity. Many of them consider the prohibition of the headscarf a serious obstacle for university education. After decades of their official damnation, it had become chic to be dressed with a headscarf – in the fashionable color of the season.


Body And Religion As already mentioned in the introduction, the human body is closely related to the doctrines of the three scriptural denominations. Islam does not differentiate between the religious and the profane – neither in public nor in private; therefore, the body is seen exclusively from a religious perspective. Alike Judaism, but in contrast to Christianity, Islam emphasizes "orthopraxy" – the correct behavior versus mere belief. One is considered Muslim or Muslima not only by true faith but also by correct ritual actions. It is described in detail how believers have to behave toward their bodies. Circumcision is supported by hygienic perceptions but it is also justified by religious considerations in Judaism and Islam – as sign of the connection with God. The tradition of circumcision of man's prepuce goes back at least to ancient Egypt, where it was considered a rite de passage to the adult period at the age of 14. Greeks and Romans considered this practice as offensive. Christianity deemed it a mutilation of the body from the very beginning and substituted it with the sacrament of baptism. Circumcision was taken over by Judaism and received – similar to Islam – a religious meaning: the acceptance into the community of believers. Abraham is said to have circumcised himself, his male relatives and his slaves as a symbol of the alliance between God and the chosen people. Whereas Jewish children used to be circumcised on the eighth day after birth, Muslims do it in later years. A certain age is not prescribed. There is an increasing tendency to conduct this act earlier in life and in modern hospitals. It has to be emphasized that in Islamic countries of North Africa, the occurring mutilation of women's clitoris has no religious background but is based on pre-Islamic roots. Although in pre-Christian antiquity, there were only few moral limitations of sexuality by religious orders, sexuality in practice was morally regulated. Married women frequently practiced sexual abstinence and encouraged their husbands to enjoy sexual amusement elsewhere, especially with female and male slaves as well as with concubines. But actually, sexuality of both sexes was narrowly limited. The law treated both sexes asymmetrically. For instance, women could not bring adultery to the courts. Already in ancient Greece – similar to early-Christian spirit – sexuality was regulated by codes of fear and mistrust. Roman social ethics suggested abstaining from incontinence; soberness was the ideal. Seen from that perspective, the emergence of Christian moral ethics was no isolated phenomenon. The cult of sexual abstinence and virginity was no exclusive success of early Christianity. Emperor Augustus (27 BC-14 AD) established in his long course of service a new attitude toward sexuality: a sexuality that should be lived out in harmonious marriage. He founded the Roman ideal of love and sexuality in the partnership of man and woman. What was new in Christianity was their focus on the purity of the body and its self-control. Since the end of the 5th century, more and more bishops began to practice celibacy; sexuality and feasts were censured and the number of monastic institutions increased. Fleshly desire was satisfied preferably within marriage and limited to the procreation of children. Sexual enjoyment per se was considered a minor sin. Among the highest values were virginity, widowhood, and celibacy. The most ambitious experiment of the young Christian Church was spiritual marriage: one or more women were living together with a man like siblings and abandoned sexual intercourse. Jewish tradition has been obsessed with the body-topic, and many experts confirm a prevailing positive attitude of Judaism toward the body, procreation, and sexuality. Therefore, there are no visible tendencies toward sexual asceticism. Sexuality is considered a natural human act. The widespread opinion is that God ordered an obligation for procreation, which constitutes a section of the commitment between God and Abraham: "Be fertile and increase", was God's first message to humankind. The idea of complementarity between men and women has deep roots in Biblical Judaism. Originally, Judaism is partially based on the idea that women can exist only in their relation to men. Their main task would consist


in the perpetuation of the human species by procreation. Lesbians contravene complementarity and therefore constitute a major challenge for Jewish society. Islam does not know the concept of the Fall of Man and the woman's responsibility for the Fall. Eroticism is understood as a foretaste of heaven and considered an earthen necessity. Marriage was seen as sanctioned by the life of the Prophet; it saves one from the sin. Celibacy as well as monastic life is not desirable. At the same time, the fear of woman's sexuality and man's desire to control it is evident: women would have permanent sexual desires and would need to be protected from them. Today, fundamentalist Islamic groups focus on the question of sexuality. One of their main claims is the separation of the sexes. Women should avoid men's company in the public and cover their bodies completely except their faces. They should appear modestly in public but demonstrate sexual impulsiveness in marital life. Men may not shake hands with women or look at them a second time. The woman's body in its sexual nature is the seat of the sin. Each wrong act involves punishment: lipstick hurts the mouth, makeup swells the face, fashionable dressing results in confinement in bed, and incomplete veiling will cause headache. Women, who do not veil will be covered with a veil of pains by God. Body And Soul It is uncertain whether the biblical authors of the Old Testament considered the (unlasting) body and the (lasting) soul as two natures, which united as a single nature (embodied in the human being). The Old Testament does not differentiate between soul and body; the resurrection of the body is addressed but not a lasting soul. The Talmudic-Rabbinic tradition, however, was influenced by Greek-Platonic philosophy, which differentiated between the two and therefore has a dualistic orientation: the soul antedates the body and wanders from one body to the other; the unlasting body is superior, and the soul governs the body. Existence is free of corporeality. Medieval Jewish philosophers underlined the cooperation of body and soul and the reduction of bodily desires as essential for a good religious life. However, deviant ideas were also present, for instance the idea that the human being had to give an account for every disdained pleasure. Therefore, it is not clear whether Judaism stressed the body or the soul. Greek-Orthodox tradition is fuelled by Hebrew Bible tradition and Greek philosophy. The holistic point of view is reflected by the New Testament and especially by the incarnation of God. God did not appear on Earth as such but took over a human body, and a human soul suffered the human tragedies. Despite the ascetic character of early Christianity, the New Testament confirms marriage as blessed by God. The Eastern Church went even as far as to grant a married priest access to priesthood. Finally, the Old Testament tradition of the union of body and soul was victorious because in hesychasm, the internal union with God, bodily techniques were linked to spiritual life. Similar to the discussion on producing images of the body, this question was accompanied by intensive debates between the Eastern and Western Church, which revealed several Eastern specifics compared to the Latin Church. The theological question was whether it was allowed to see God encouraged by certain physical techniques already in lifetime. Between 1341 and 1368, four synods were confronted with this problem. Finally, this practice was not only permitted but it even became elevated to a particularly preferred form of religious practice. This decision finally had an impact on people's everyday behavior in the sphere of the Eastern Church. The physical technique of the hesychasts was described in detail by Byzantine writers by the end of the 13 and in course of the 14th century. They consisted of three aspects: (1) the monk is sitting at a low table and puts his head between the knees; (2) the breathing rhythm is reduced in order to increase concentration; (3) he is seeking internal investigation and a place for his heart; the flesh distances from God and the spirit comes closer to him. The hesychast experiences a vision of light – the so called Tabor light – an uncreated light, which three of Jesus' disciples were allowed to see on the Tabor Mountain.


This leads back to the ascetic movement of early Christianity. Since the 2nd century, the Christian Church began to conceive the ideal male and female body and to discipline sexuality: the dualism of body and soul and the resulting dissatisfaction with bodily life was a burden of antiquity. The world has to be liberated from it. Already in the 3rd century in Egypt and Palestine, the withdrawal into hermitages and monasteries had begun. Anthony, the "Monks' Father", came from an Egyptian village, secluded himself into wasteland in the course of Emperor Aurelius' reign. He died at the age of about 90 (356) and was one of the most prominent figures of Christian eremitism. The first eremites were numerous in the Egyptian Desert, where they spent their lives as anchorites or eremites under the harsh conditions of the desert. Sexual temptation should be combated with the reduction of nutrition. However, only a minority accepted the forms of radical desert-asceticism, , which included the neglect of clothing and body care, unkempt and long hair, extremely limited and one-sided nutrition. Upright walking was substituted by a humble attitude by living in a little cell, wasting away, sleeping in sitting position, standing instead of sitting – these were the methods to liberate oneself from the body, materiality, and desires. Asceticism was deemed a against the own body. The desertascetic dedicated his life to working intensively with his body, fasted and deprived of sleep. The emphasis was on salvation and the abstention from the flesh. The separation from worldly ties became physically visible and a new form of life emerged: monasticism. Around 320, Pachomius provided a colony of eremites with the first written rule – under the supervision of an abbot in a monastery. As new ascetic ideals, the overcoming of one's own faults and weaknesses as well as the preservation of helpfulness and humility emerged. Only the true ascetic was a true human being. This is the origin of the Greek term "monachoi" – the unique. It was the Egyptian Church that founded monasticism. The walled monastery became a piece of desert in a city. The Christian West only reluctantly accepted this form of holiness and ascetics. Islam in the form of Sufism has generated an analogous phenomenon (see Chapter 11) – but only in a superficial perspective: a more precise investigation reveals important differences. Small groups of pious ascetics organized themselves in contemporary Iraq already in the 8 th century. They denied everything related to the secular and concentrated on the lectures and meditation of the Koran. Nightly prayer was particularly appreciated – it is mentioned in the Koran but not included in the prescribed five prayers. They were in fear of the Last Judgment, where they would have to present details about their acts. These early Muslim ascetics obviously had contacts to Christian ascetics of the desert, who had an impact on them. Besides the ritual prayer, the long Lent periods played a significant role. The motto was: "Little consumption, little sleep, and little conversation". They were in search of contact with God; the control of breath should support that. Already in the 9th century, the first Sufi-orders under the supervision of masters (sheikhs) were organized; fresh attendees had to pass a rite of initiation. Retreat for 40 days became important, imposed on the disciples by the master. The conditions were low consumption, permanent praying and meditation, in order to achieve the catharsis of the soul. The followers used to be a group of people, who gathered around a spiritual leader in order to be instructed by him and to fulfill his orders. They lived in the convent only temporarily, and alike their masters, were not obliged to celibacy. Some of the Sufi-masters procreated a large number of children. In addition, convents with free access for men and women existed and several of them were heterodoxically oriented – elements that separated Sufism from the monasticism of the Christian East and West. Body And Image The relationship between the body and its depiction is a very tough one. Contemporary research claims the original motivation for the production of such images in the pictorial representation of the dead. The cult of


the death – supported by images – substituted the vanishing body. The oldest documented pictures of death cult refer to the time of about 7000 BC; archaeological excavations are distributed over present-day Israel, Syria, and Jordan. The then practiced ritual treatment of the dead consisted in the separation of the head from the rest of the body and its visualization. Excavations in Jericho demonstrate that the cranial bones were covered by lime or clay, which preserved the lifetime of the deceased. The eyes were imitated by pearls and shells. The skulls were found in groups, which lead to the assumption of family graves. Besides that, life-size figurative images, masks of stone with open mouths and eyes were found, which were used only for the death ritual; perhaps they were carried by female dancers, who tried to make the dead alive. Early traces of ancestor worship can be observed. Starting from here, there are diverse developmental paths to detect, which finally led to the prohibition of the visualization of creatures in Judaism and Islam. In this regard, ancient Egypt represents a special development in the form of the mummification of corpses as soon as chemical conservation became possible. It was reserved for the elite and was related to the belief of survival after death. "Cities of the deaths" emerged in the form of gigantic necropolises, which reflected the social order of that world. The deaths owned their houses, in which they lived in the form of their images. The ancestors were worshiped with regular sacrifices. Another form of relation between body and image was maintained in Mesopotamia by establishing statues of kings and gods. This was not ancestor worship any longer but already divinization. The statues of gods in the temples of the Sumerians are obviously older than the statues of kings also established in temples. Not only gods received sacrifices but also the dead kings. By using the same medium, the kings were put on the level of gods. Several kings already during their lifetime founded a statue in order to make sure they had the privilege to live eternally; they dominated the living not only in lifetime but also in death. Interestingly, later on they began to provide inscriptions for their statues; the texts include speeches and replies, orders, and the recollection of certain events. Image and inscription had different tasks; by uniting them, their magic power was reinforced. This combined pictorial and linguistic magic was taken over by the Hittites (→ Hittites), for instance. In the three book religions, the question of image and script should receive high attention. The second Command of the Mosaic Decalogue prohibited not only the pictorial representation of Yahweh but of the human being in general. The image of a human being would constitute a plagiarism of the Creator God, who created Adam, the first human being. Yahweh becomes only visible through the written word in the Torah. Thus, this question became relevant for the two younger Abrahamitic religions as well. Greek and Roman culture differed in the question of the body and its pictorial representation. In the eyes of the Greeks, images could not replace the decedent; images were considered metaphors of the dead but could not symbolize life. For Plato, script and painting constituted artificial memory, which could only imitate life; images could only duplicate the dead. The Romans had a deviating opinion about the image. The noble decedent was accompanied by a procession of masks of ancestors (imagines maiorum) to the grave. The masks of the ancestors were stored in the house of the family. In the funeral procession, the masks were carried by persons, who looked resembled the ancestor. The ancestors were also appreciated in the funeral oration. The function of this funeral procession with the masks was also to underline the privileges of certain families. Finally, this ceremony was therefore prohibited. Ancestor worship, however, with images of the deceased on the grave remained intact. Early Christianity, emerged in a Roman world with numerous images of gods and located in Abrahamitic tradition, reacted resolutely to images – also in order to delimit itself from the Roman state cult. The early Christian community churches were without pictures. Pre-Christian society, however, was


accustomed to the house cult, house gods, and private expectations of salvation. It can be expected that Christianity therefore loosened its tough stand when it became state religion; the house gods were only replaced by Christian saints. In the 6th century, the adoration of images was officially accepted. The reasons for that are not quite clear. An important reason probably was that the believers desired the bodily representation of the saints, Mary and God, in order to get a mental picture of them. The accomplishment of salvation and miracles were demanded from the icon. The emperors of that time also supported this turnaround of the Church because the images could strengthen the Christian foundations of the Empire. The emperor's cult was complemented by the public icon's cult. The theological problem of God's invisibility was resolved by classifying visibility only as superficial and not raising a claim of reality. The image was considered as "Bible for the poor", who were not able to read the Holy Script. The question of the image, however, was too serious as to be resolved without conflicts, also because of the Islamic Empire's vicinity. Early Islam rigorously prohibited the pictorial representation of the creature. Therefore, in Orthodox Christianity, a long enduring and bloody debate emerged in regard to this question, which is known in historiography as "iconoclastic controversy" (730-841). The arguments, which were put on the table in the course of the conflict, demonstrate how fundamental the theological controversies could be in that question. The debate began with an edict of Emperor Leon III (717-741) in 730, which prohibited the veneration of images. He had already taken a stance against the picture four years before. When the Patriarch of Constantinople, Germanos I, criticized the edict, he was forced out of office by Leon. Also, Pope Gregory III's criticism remained unheard. The religious considerations of the prohibition of images were only delivered later. The controversy is interesting because it reveals the religious thinking of that time. Things created by the human spirit may not claim permanence. People, however, utilize results of the divine act of creation when they produce a miraculous image – they usurp divine power. An additional problem arose through the recipient whose images and interpretations cannot be controlled. This attitude was also shared by Judaism and Islam; the latter was just in the phase of formation at that time. The prohibition of images was taken over later by the Protestant Church. In 754, the Byzantine Emperor Constantine V (740-775, co-emperor of Leon III) convoked a council in Hiereia, a suburb of Constantinople in that time, where all arguments pro and contra were presented. Emperor Leon was the leader of the images' opponents. His arguments were: (1) the human and divine nature of Christ is indivisible. It is impossible to depict the human side only – this offends God's invisibility. (2) Accepting the opinion that the two natures (the human and the divine) are not interrelated is heretic. The basis is the nature of Christ. In 480, the council of Chalcedon had already stated that the person of Christ represents both the divine and the human nature in an unmixed way. (3) To venerate images is therefore idolatry. The theology of veneration of pictures was basically formulated by St. John from Damascus (approx. 675-749), who was socialized in an Islamic context. He was the most important theologian of the 8 th century and claimed that God became flesh, demonstrated his bodily nature, and therefore there is no reason not to create a picture of him. Divine energy penetrates even the substance of the icon since the incarnation releases the sacramental potentials of the substance. How to create an icon, which had the invisible as topic, how to paint someone that neither has amplitude nor figure? How to paint the bodiless? The figurative but non-naturalistic image obeys the laws of a symbolic realism that is typical of the Eastern Church. The visible is mirrored by the invisible. The soul is protected by a jacket. Without a body, we cannot proceed to the spiritual. Departing from the physical image, we arrive at the spiritual image. The icon with its wooden background and its colors becomes "bearer of the spirit". Its substance is impregnated with divine mercy. I do not pray to the substance but to him, who created the substance.


His argument was that the image is never equal to the depicted. Nobody can equalize the original and the depicted. However, the image contributes to the virtue of the depicted. His mercy and power are absorbed by the prayers. Veneration never addresses the picture but always to the prototype. The picture is only a proxy of the depicted. The creation of the picture does not emerge from the painter's spirit but from the spirit of the Christian Church – art is a maiden of theology. Finally, the veneration of pictures became accepted in the Byzantine Empire and in Orthodoxy. In 869, a synod confirmed the equation of the Holy Image with the Holy Script. Iconic painting crystallized in certain typologies, which were advanced differently in certain iconographic schools. Artistic license and creativity were limited by monastic criteria. This limitation of the artist has a long tradition. The accuracy of the picture was the decisive criterion, not its aesthetics. As soon as the miraculous effect of the picture of a certain saint was proven, its representation became canonized. The decision of the Eastern Church in favor of the Holy Picture (of Christ and the saints) had far-reaching consequences for the cult; there was hardly any cult-act which was not accompanied by icons. Icons can be found in many households; they are also present at baptism, and believers light candles in front of the Holy Picture in the course of the holy service. In the Western Church, the picture was not exposed to similar dogmatic discussions. Its function was considered limited to didactics. The image cannot be a carrier of the spirit. It also cannot substitute the holiness of the script. The human being can be saved without having seen holy pictures but not without becoming familiar with God. The script has absolute theological priority and the painting does not emerge from theology. The image serves the decoration of a church; it is representation but not presentation. It evokes the divine act but does not allow participation. The unity of Orthodox art is confronted with a plurality of styles, which characterizes various epochs of western art. Western art opened itself to the topic of the dead and the sick; the icon was meant to depict the transcendent. In sharp contrast to the Eastern Church, the Western Church opened up since the period of Renaissance – departing from the city of Florence – to perspective representations. The basis for this – as already mentioned in Chapter 6 – was laid by Alhazen's "Book of Visual Theory" (1028); for art history, this was a gigantic step forward. Visual theory became a western theory of the image; the measuring of light became a measuring of the glimpse. Now pictures were considered a projection of the viewer. Alhazen's visual theory could have no impact on the Arabic world since Islam prohibits the depiction of creatures. Therefore, his theory was based on imageless light. Images referred to the mental sphere; a physical representation of the internal view was excluded. Vision could not result in pictures, which represent the visible world. Alhazen's insight thus constitutes the scientific basis of the Islamic prohibition of pictures as well as of perspectivity in the West. The Islamic prohibition of pictures could not be kept upright consequently – especially in Shiitism – and had to be given up in the course of the 19th century, when photography found its way to the Ottoman Empire. What remained is the pictorial representation of God and the Prophet. Several sultans did not adhere to the prohibition by ordering self-portraits of themselves from Italian artists – for instance Mehmed, the conqueror of Constantinople. Basically, the Islamic world remained imageless after Islamic philosophers had prevailed against Christian thinkers, who supported pictorial representation. Among the latter was the already mentioned John from Damascus. Like his father, he held high offices at the court of the Caliphs but had to resign and retire to a monastery close to Jerusalem at the beginning of the 8 th century, when religious controversies intensified. The Islamic prohibition of pictures on the one hand is based on the dogma of God's nonpresentability; on the other hand, it is based on the conviction that only God can create creatures; people who are created cannot become creators. Creatures are defined as beings who are able to see, move, and who have a voice. Plants for instance, therefore – although also created by God – do not belong to this group and are allowed to be depicted. Also in Judaism, the word expressed by the Script, has a monopoly. In contrast to Moses, who received the Ten Commandments in written form, the Prophet first received the


message orally by the angel Gabriel and it was written down afterwards; this resulted in a certain tension between the word and the script, between createdness and non-createdness. The prohibition of pictures had considerable impact on Islamic art since it remained limited in its motifs to the non-inspired nature. Therefore, decor-art became high-ranking and was accepted by the West as "arabesque". Until the 12th century, it was dominated by a strict geometric concept. The Mongol conquest and temporary occupation of parts of the Islamic world in the 13th century was decisive for the adoption of Chinese motifs such as plants, pedicels, and tendrils into decor-art. In the course of the 19th century, the taboo of anthropomorphic representations was loosened in the Ottoman Empire; this was not without conflicts. Also the perspectivistic view had to be accepted, which originated in technical drawings for military purposes. The arts only reluctantly accepted the perspectivistic view. It was first taught at the Art Academy in Istanbul, founded in 1881, and the Art School in Cairo, founded in 1908. The painter Osman Hamdi (1841-1910), who received his training in Paris, became the first director of the Academy in Istanbul. This chapter could illuminate the history of the body and of body consciousness only selectively. Greek medicine had made enormous progress in discovering the body's functions, and Arab contribution was also considerable. Liberated from the fetters of theology, medical knowledge increased in Western Europe since the Renaissance period. The same applies for healthcare. This chapter had to give considerable space to the religious impacts on the body since taboos and the concept of shame are, to a certain extent, dependent on religious socialization. Western Christianity paved the way to the depiction of the body much earlier than Orthodoxy, Judaism, or Islam. Islam, among the three book religions, puts the main focus on covering the body. Although Catholic Church degrades sexuality, serious limits of shame practically no longer exist in its sphere of influence.


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