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Lecture 9

HIST 1F90 Lecture 9: The Balkan Wars week 9.docx

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Elizabeth Neswald

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The Balkan Wars (1912-1913) The Imperialism of the “Little Peoples”
All empires were poor (Except German)
Ottoman Empire internal affairs were
always being meddled in by the
Russian/Austro-Hungarian Empires.
Montenegrins: Speak Serb, considered to
be Serbs but ran their own country.
Bosnia – Muslims, speak Serb, same
customs as Serbs but are Muslim.
Macedonia – wasn’t considered its own
separate people, Greeks and Serbs had
their eyes on them. National Identity was
Minority of Jews, but not as much as Poland/Russia
Roma: Gypsies scattered around the Balkans.
16th-17th Century – hit the all-time high of
their empire. The tried to take over Vienna,
but didn’t succeed. They took over the
Black sea.
Their empire covered Syria, Iraq, The
Balkans, Palestine, KSA, Mecca, Medina (2
holiest places in Islam, Very IMPORTANT)
Incredibly large and powerful state.
Anatolia (Now Turkey) was the Capital.
Anatolia was taken by the Byzantine
Empire and took Constantinople (Istanbul)
as the capital. It was a Roman Catholic Empire. IN the 15th Century the Turks took over.
In 1453 – Muslim Ottomans seized control of the Byzantine Empire and called it Istanbul.
The Sultan took over and ran the Empire based on Political and Islamic Laws. The sultan would ask
religious scholars in the government to make sure he’s following the Islamic Law. This empire was
designed for war and expansion.
Janissaries: Made out of slaves. Received by “Blood Tax”, non-Muslims had to produce children and
give them to the empire. They owed their allegiance to the sultan. They were cut off from their original
villages. They got very high ranks in the military such as being officers. Very Efficient military Force.

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Christians of the Ottoman Empire were treated very well, they paid more taxes than Muslims, but it was
a lot better than in other empires.
70% of Albania and most of Bosnia was Muslim, the rest of the Balkans were Christians.
In the European Empires the Non-Christians weren’t treated well.
The “People of the book”- Muslims, Christians and Jews.
The Christians in the Ottoman Empire weren’t allowed to ride a horse in presence of a Muslim. They
couldn’t wear the color green since green is considered the color of Islam.
Churches can’t be higher than a mosque.
Christians were treated as second class and were asked to pay taxes. They were still treated a lot
better than in other countries.
Millet: Self-governing body of Christians that used taxes to help repair churches, they gave some of the
taxes to the sultan as well.
17th-20th Century – Decline!
1983 – Tried to take Vienna but didn’t
Western States realized they can go around
Africa, meaning the middle-man (Middle
East) would be cut-off making trade a lot
more difficult.
Western Europe industrialized, the Ottoman
Empire didn’t.
Sultans seemed weak, feeble-minded.
The empire stopped expanding, decreasing tax space, the taxes were low and the land was decreasing
so they weren’t getting a lot of money back.
Tax Farming: an official has to bribe their
way into getting an area to collect taxes. The
bribe was expensive which put them in debt.
They used the taxes to give the sultan and
to try to eventually make a profit.
It was a Muslim state, different from the
European Empires.
The Russians claimed to have an interest in
protecting the Christians Slavs. (The Serbs,
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