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By Cyril Mango, Gilbert Dagron

From its beginning, the town of Constantinople ruled the Byzantine global. It was once the seat of the emperor, the centre of presidency and church, the focal point of trade and tradition, through some distance the best city centre; its wishes when it comes to offers and protection imposed their very own good judgment at the improvement of the empire. Byzantine Constantinople has usually been handled by way of the walled urban and its fast suburbs. during this quantity, containing 25 papers introduced on the twenty seventh Spring Symposium of Byzantine reviews held at Oxford in 1993, the viewpoint has been enlarged to surround a much broader geographical atmosphere, that of the city’s ecu and Asiatic hinterland. inside of this framework quite a few interconnected issues were addressed, starting from the naked must haves of existence and defence to fabricate and export, communications among the capital and its hinterland, tradition and inventive manifestations and the function of the sacred.

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Additional resources for Constantinople and Its Hinterland: Papers from the Twenty-Seventh Spring Symposium of Byzantine Studies, Oxford, April 1993

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On this occasion the roads were prepared by 'covering them with a thick white sand'/1' How did these ceremonies appear to the wider population? Hagop Mintzuri, an Armenian baker's apprentice, later wrote in his memoirs that he remembered the sultan's arrival at the Sinan Pasa mosque in Besiktas for ceremonial prayers at the end of the fast of Ramadan; First the Albanian guards, dressed in violet knee-breeches, who were not soldiers or police and did not speak Turkish, would fill the upper part of our market square.

Secondly, there were the more specific and personal manifestations of imperial munificence such as decorations, specially donated copies of the Qur'an, imperial standards and other ceremonial trappings. Third were the religiously symbolic items acquired by the palace such as calligraphy purported to belong to Islamic great men and other artifacts of similar significance. T h e fourth falls into a somewhat different category. It concerns the symbolism of language in Ottoman official documentation.

Symbolism and Power in the Hamtdian Regime 23 A physical manifestation of this shift towards a modern, public persona of the monarch was nineteenth-century mosque architecture. The classical Ottoman mosque was altered to suit the ceremonial protocol of European usage with the addition of a two-storey structure to the main building to serve as ceremonial public space to give a more secular character to the buildings, Aptullah Kuran has pointed out that the space in the imperial mosques designated as the personal prayer chamber of the sultan greatly increased in size from the late eighteenth century: '[The] appearance and evolution of the sultan's prayer platform, or loge, went beyond the prerequisites of architecture...

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