Ottoman diplomacy

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Ottoman diplomacy refers to the diplomatic practices, policies, and institutions of the Ottoman Empire, which existed from the late 13th century until its dissolution in 1922. The empire, which spanned three continents (Europe, Asia, and Africa) at its height, developed a complex and sophisticated diplomatic system to manage its relations with other states and empires.

Some key features of Ottoman diplomacy include:

Ambassadors and envoys: The Ottomans sent emissaries and ambassadors to other courts and vice versa. These diplomatic representatives were responsible for establishing and maintaining relations, negotiating treaties, and resolving disputes.

The Capitulations: The Ottoman Empire granted certain privileges and protections to foreign merchants and states in exchange for economic, military, or political benefits. These agreements, known as capitulations, played a crucial role in shaping the empire’s economic and diplomatic ties.

Gift-giving and ceremonial exchanges: As part of its diplomatic practices, the Ottoman Empire engaged in the exchange of gifts and ceremonial visits. This was an essential aspect of fostering goodwill and demonstrating respect for other rulers and states.

Balance of power: The Ottoman Empire was conscious of the need to maintain a balance of power with its European neighbors, such as the Habsburg Empire and the Russian Empire. It often engaged in alliances or diplomatic maneuvering to counterbalance the influence of rival powers.

Religious diplomacy: The Ottoman Empire, as the seat of the Islamic Caliphate, used religion as a diplomatic tool. It maintained relations with Muslim communities in other states and often sought to protect the rights and interests of Muslims living under non-Muslim rule.

The use of proxies and alliances: The Ottoman Empire occasionally supported proxy forces or formed alliances with local powers to achieve its diplomatic goals or project its influence in a particular region.



Diplomatic integration with Europe before Selim III

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History and the evolution of diplomacy

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