The Price of Legal Institutions: The Beratll Merchants in the Eighteenth-Century Ottoman Empire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In the eighteenth century, European embassies in the Ottoman Empire started selling exemption licenses called berats, which granted non-Muslim Ottomans tax exemptions and the option to use European law. I construct a novel price panel for British and French licenses based on primary sources. The evidence reveals that prices were significantly high and varied across countries. Agents acquired multiple berats to enhance their legal options, which they exploited through strategic court switching. By the early 1800s, berat holders had driven other groups from European-Ottoman trade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)720-748
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Economic History
Volume75
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 27 2015

Fingerprint

Ottoman Empire
Legal institutions
License
18th century
Merchants
Exemption
Tax exemption
European law
Primary Source
Embassies
Tax

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

The Price of Legal Institutions : The Beratll Merchants in the Eighteenth-Century Ottoman Empire. / Artunç, Cihan.

In: Journal of Economic History, Vol. 75, No. 3, 27.08.2015, p. 720-748.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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