IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hal/journl/hal-02263278.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

State predation in historical perspective: the case of Ottoman müsadere practice during 1695–1839

Author

Listed:
  • Yasin Arslantaş

    (Anadolu University)

  • Antoine Pietri

    (CEE-M - Centre d'Economie de l'Environnement - Montpellier - FRE2010 - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier - Institut Agro - Institut national d'enseignement supérieur pour l'agriculture, l'alimentation et l'environnement - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UM - Université de Montpellier)

  • Mehrdad Vahabi

    (CEPN - Centre d'Economie de l'Université Paris Nord - UP13 - Université Paris 13 - USPC - Université Sorbonne Paris Cité - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

This paper studies the practice of Müsadere in the Ottoman Empire. Müsadere refers to the expropriation of elites—often tax farmers or administrators—by the Sultan. This practice is interesting from both political economy and economic history perspectives as the Ottoman Empire continued to increase its reliance on it during the eighteenth century, a period when European states were investing in fiscal capacity and building bureaucratic tax systems. The main argument is that Sultans faced a "political Laffer curve:" if revenue is too low, the state collapses; if fiscal extraction is too high there is a rebellion and the Sultan risks losing power. While expropriations (müsadere) allow the Sultan to keep taxes low, they are vulnerable to provoking elites to invest in fugitive rather than (more productive) captive assets. We also show that the Sultan is more prone to target politically strong elites when his fiscal capacity is low.

Suggested Citation

  • Yasin Arslantaş & Antoine Pietri & Mehrdad Vahabi, 2019. "State predation in historical perspective: the case of Ottoman müsadere practice during 1695–1839," Post-Print hal-02263278, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-02263278
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-019-00700-9
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02263278
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Cosgel, Metin & Miceli, Thomas & Ahmed, Rasha, 2009. "Law, state power, and taxation in Islamic history," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 704-717, September.
    2. Monson,Andrew & Scheidel,Walter (ed.), 2015. "Fiscal Regimes and the Political Economy of Premodern States," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781107089204.
    3. Volckart, Oliver, 2000. "The open constitution and its enemies: competition, rent seeking, and the rise of the modern state," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-17, May.
    4. Johnson, Noel D. & Koyama, Mark, 2014. "Tax farming and the origins of state capacity in England and France," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 1-20.
    5. Karaman, K. Kivanç & Pamuk, Şevket, 2010. "Ottoman State Finances in European Perspective, 1500–1914," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 70(3), pages 593-629, September.
    6. Lane, Frederic C., 1958. "Economic Consequences of Organized Violence," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(4), pages 401-417, December.
    7. Philip T. Hoffman, 2017. "Public Economics and History: A Review of Fiscal Regimes and the Political Economy of Premodern States, Edited by Andrew Monson and Walter Scheidel," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 55(4), pages 1556-1569, December.
    8. Mark Koyama, 2010. "The political economy of expulsion: the regulation of Jewish moneylending in medieval England," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 21(4), pages 374-406, December.
    9. Ennio E. Piano, 2019. "State capacity and public choice: a critical survey," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 178(1), pages 289-309, January.
    10. Karaman, Kamil KIvanç, 2009. "Decentralized coercion and self-restraint in provincial taxation: The Ottoman Empire, 15th-16th centuries," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 690-703, September.
    11. Johnson, Noel D. & Koyama, Mark, 2017. "States and economic growth: Capacity and constraints," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 1-20.
    12. Veitch, John M., 1986. "Repudiations and Confiscations by the Medieval State," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(1), pages 31-36, March.
    13. Balla, Eliana & Johnson, Noel D., 2009. "Fiscal Crisis and Institutional Change in the Ottoman Empire and France," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 809-845, September.
    14. Ma, Debin & Rubin, Jared, 2019. "The Paradox of Power: Principal-agent problems and administrative capacity in Imperial China (and other absolutist regimes)," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 277-294.
    15. Ayse Y. Evrensel & Tiffany Minx, 2017. "An institutional approach to the decline of the Ottoman Empire," Cogent Economics & Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 1380248-138, January.
    16. Olson, Mancur, 1993. "Dictatorship, Democracy, and Development," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 87(3), pages 567-576, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Mehrdad Vahabi, 2020. "Introduction: a symposium on the predatory state," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 182(3), pages 233-242, March.
    2. Bálint Madlovics & Bálint Magyar, 2021. "Post-communist predation: modeling reiderstvo practices in contemporary predatory states," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 187(3), pages 247-273, June.
    3. Harris,Colin & Cai,Meina & Murtazashvili,Ilia & Murtazashvili,Jennifer Brick, 2020. "The Origins and Consequences of Property Rights," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781108969055.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Peter J. Boettke & Rosolino A. Candela, 2020. "Productive specialization, peaceful cooperation and the problem of the predatory state: lessons from comparative historical political economy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 182(3), pages 331-352, March.
    2. Geloso, Vincent J. & Salter, Alexander W., 2020. "State capacity and economic development: Causal mechanism or correlative filter?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 170(C), pages 372-385.
    3. Ma, Debin & Rubin, Jared, 2019. "The Paradox of Power: Principal-agent problems and administrative capacity in Imperial China (and other absolutist regimes)," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 277-294.
    4. Johnson, Noel D. & Koyama, Mark, 2017. "States and economic growth: Capacity and constraints," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 1-20.
    5. Ennio E. Piano, 2019. "State capacity and public choice: a critical survey," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 178(1), pages 289-309, January.
    6. Deng, Hanzhi, 2021. "The merit of misfortune: Taiping Rebellion and the rise of indirect taxation in modern China, 1850s-1900s," Economic History Working Papers 108564, London School of Economics and Political Science, Department of Economic History.
    7. Hansen, Bradley A. & Hansen, Mary Eschelbach, 2016. "The historian's craft and economics," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(2), pages 349-370, June.
    8. Theresa Finley & Mark Koyama, 2018. "Plague, Politics, and Pogroms: The Black Death, the Rule of Law, and the Persecution of Jews in the Holy Roman Empire," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 61(2), pages 253-277.
    9. Jared Rubin & Debin Ma, 2017. "The Paradox of Power: Understanding Fiscal Capacity in Imperial China and Absolutist Regimes," Working Papers 17-02, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
    10. Johnson, Noel D. & Koyama, Mark, 2013. "Legal centralization and the birth of the secular state," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 959-978.
    11. Ilia Murtazashvili & Jennifer Murtazashvili, 2019. "The political economy of legal titling," The Review of Austrian Economics, Springer;Society for the Development of Austrian Economics, vol. 32(3), pages 251-268, September.
    12. Yu Hao & Kevin Zhengcheng Liu, 2020. "Taxation, fiscal capacity, and credible commitment in eighteenth‐century China: the effects of the formalization and centralization of informal surtaxes," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 73(4), pages 914-939, November.
    13. Mikołaj Malinowski, 2018. "Economic consequences of state failure; Legal capacity, regulatory activity, and market integration in Poland, 1505-1772," Working Papers 0143, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    14. Karaman, K. Kıvanç & Pamuk, Şevket & Yıldırım-Karaman, Seçil, 2020. "Money and monetary stability in Europe, 1300–1914," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 279-300.
    15. Stergios Skaperdas & Samarth Vaidya, 2020. "Why did pre-modern states adopt Big-God religions?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 182(3), pages 373-394, March.
    16. Bolt, Jutta & Gardner, Leigh, 2019. "African institutions under colonial rule," CEPR Discussion Papers 14198, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Langlois, Richard N., 2013. "Business groups and the natural state," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 14-26.
    18. Coşgel, Metin M. & Langlois, Richard N. & Miceli, Thomas J., 2020. "Identity, religion, and the state: The origin of theocracy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 179(C), pages 608-622.
    19. Anthony Gill, 2021. "The comparative endurance and efficiency of religion: a public choice perspective," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 189(3), pages 313-334, December.
    20. Jamie Bologna Pavlik & Andrew T. Young, 2020. "Medieval European traditions in representation and state capacity today," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 133-186, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political Laffer curve; Ottoman Empire; Müsadere; Fiscal System; Captive and fugitive assets; Confiscations; Predation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
    • N45 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Asia including Middle East

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-02263278. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: CCSD (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/ .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.