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5th Seminar: Gergana Georgieva, "Temettuat defters as a source for the history of the Bulgarian lands and the Balkans"

Georgieva Gergana (University of Veliko Turnovo)
Andreas Lyberatos (Panteion University) and Antonis Hadjikyriacou (Panteion University)


The lecture presents temettuat defters as a source for the nineteenth-century economic and social history of the Balkans. The presentation will communicate some results, based on current research of temettuat defters from northern Bulgarian lands. More than one million households were included in the description of property and income in 1844-1845. Because the particular defters’ data take households as their basis, the information they provide is very detailed and creates a big pool of statistical information, which can shed light to different aspects of the socio-economic history of the region: economic development of certain settlements or regions; comparison of financial status of the taxpayers; characteristics of the individual farms and property; professional profile of a village or a town; diversity of agricultural products and animals in a region; analysis of the social structure with close look at some social and professional groups; analysis of demographic structure. Although the inventory had not been completed, the preserved temettuat defters became the most detailed and profound source for the nineteenth century Ottoman economy and society. Some limitations of the source will be discussed too. The lecture places emphasis on the regional specifics of the economic and social history of the Balkans. Actually, temettuat defters can combine very well (and verify) information from non-Ottoman sources. They are very suitable for highlighting regional specifics and comparing different regions.


Date: Monday 28 March 2022 (16:00-18:00)

Zoom link:



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