Home Seshat Region: Northeast Africa (Africa)
Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate III
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EQ 2020  eg_mamluk_sultanate_3 / EgMamBu

During the Burji period of the Mamluk Sultanate, Egypt was ruled by an elite ’slave’ military caste of Circassian origin. These rulers had replaced the earlier Bahri Dynasty, of Turkish origin, in 1382 CE during the preceding ’crisis phase’. With the assassination of Sultan Faraj in 1412 CE, Mamluk Egypt entered a ’relative recovery’ with ’periods of brilliance’, although problems such as demographic stagnation did not disappear. [1] The most renowned of the rulers were the Sultans Barsbay and Qaytbay, but they did little to prevent the deterioration of the Mamluk institutions and the economic collapse and disorder that preceded the Ottoman takeover. [2] We begin our Burji Mamluk period in 1412 and end it with the fall of the dynasty to Ottoman forces in 1517. [3]
Population and political organization
Since the children of mamluks could by law never become mamluks, [4] the Mamluk Sultanate was in every generation ruled by a foreign ’slave-elite’ that had to be constantly replaced by new ’slave’ recruits imported, educated, promoted, and manumitted specifically for the role. Manumission was essential because under Islamic law no slave could be sovereign. The sultan performed a ritual manumission at his inaugural ceremony but the legal manumission would usually have occurred when he was about 18 years old, following the mamluk training. [5] In the Bahri period the Mamluks were of Turkish origin (like those recruited by the last Ayyubid sultan), but later sultans recruited mostly Circassians from the Caucasus. [6] Mamluk recruits were employed in the central government, the military and as governors in the provinces. While promotion to the highest echelons of the government and military was ’granted according to precise rules’, succession to the highest position - the Sultanate itself - was often a chaotic contest in which ’seniority, merit, cabal, intrigue, or violence’ all jostled for prominence. [7] Nevertheless, the deck was stacked such that from 1290 to 1382 CE, the sultanate was inherited by 17 different descendants of Sultan Qalawun. [8]
The Mamluk sultan ruled from Cairo and during his absence from the capital, Egypt was governed by his viceroy, the na’ib al-saltana. [9] The bureaucracy did not tightly control the countryside. Rather, influence was projected informally through ’iqta holdings (allotments of land along with the right to their tax revenue) - first used in Egypt during the preceding Ayyubid Dynasty period. These were assigned as a way to remunerate the slave soldiers of the centrally organized professional military, [10] as well as more formally through the na’ib, governor of a mamlaka administrative district. [11] The Mamluk elite controlled the appointment of ’judges, legal administrators, professors, Sufi shaykhs, prayer leaders, and other Muslim officials. They paid the salaries of religious personnel, endowed their schools, and thus brought the religious establishment into a state bureaucracy’. [12] In Cairo, Islamic law was kept by three traditional magistracies called qadi (pl. qudah), whose courts had a wide remit over civil law. A law-enforcement official called the chief of the sergeant of the watch oversaw wulah (sg. wali) policemen who kept watch at night and also fought fires. [13]
Although struck by plague and famines during the crisis period, Cairo was never short of people: a lower-bound estimate of its resident population places it at about 150,000 people. [9] The population of the sultanate perhaps recovered slightly in this period, reaching about 6 million in 1500 CE. [14]
Infrastructure and Public Services
Like previous Mamluk rulers, the Burji Sultans expended considerable resources on public works projects - both directly and indirectly via patronage. They built and restored schools, hostels, bathhouses and mosques, and, under Sultan Qayt Bey (reigned 1468‒1496) in particular, arts and architecture flourished. [15] The El Muayyad Mosque (1420 CE), the Mosque of Barsbay (1425 CE), [16] and the mausoleum complex of Sultan Qaitbay (1468‒1496 CE) all date from this period. Cairo also had a water supply system, paid for by its users, that conducted water from the Nile to the city’s streets and houses. [17] Waqf (religious foundations) were set up through initial endowments in property with the intention that they would become self-funding. Many public baths, caravanserais and shops were built by charitable and religious foundations, [18] often in combination with initial patronage from the sultan or other Mamluk aristocrats. Sultan Qaytbay built many urbu (multi-storey apartments) and used the revenues to fund a charitable foundation for the inhabitants of Medina. [18] However, despite the continued financing of elaborate construction projects, increasingly the government could not afford the upkeep of essential infrastructure such as canals, dams and irrigation systems. [5]
These public works were matched by lavish private buildings for the sultan and his retainers. Sultan Ghuri notably built an ornate palace and garden, with soil and trees imported from Syria and an aqueduct to water it. [19] Mamluks treated themselves and foreign dignitaries to entertainment in hippodromes and to polo tournaments on the maydan (public square). [6] In the royal pavilion (maqad), ’incense burned and wine flowed, while musicians played and poets recited to a court society clad in silk and sprinkled with rosewater, the beards of its male luminaries perfumed with the musk of civet’. [20]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 116-17) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 165) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[3]: (Winter 1992, xiii) Michael Winter. 1992. Egyptian Society under Ottoman Rule, 1517‒1798. London: Routledge.

[4]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 16) Roland Oliver and Anthony Atmore. 2001. Medieval Africa, 1250-1800. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[5]: (Hrbek 1977, 39-67) Ivan Hrbek. 1977. ’Egypt, Nubia and the Eastern Deserts’, in The Cambridge History of Africa, Volume 3: From c. 1050 to c. 1600, edited by Roland Oliver, 10-97. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[6]: (Raymond 2000, 112) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[7]: (Raymond 2000, 113-14) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[8]: (Raymond 2000, 114) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[9]: (Raymond 2000, 152) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[10]: (Lapidus 2012, 250) Ira M. Lapidus. 2012. Islamic Societies to the Nineteenth Century: A Global History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[11]: (Drory 2004, 169) Joseph Drory. 2004. ’Some Remarks Concerning Safed and the Organization of the Region in the Mamluk period’, in The Mamluks in Egyptian and Syrian Politics and Society, edited by Michael Winter and Amalia Levanoni, 163-90. Leiden: Brill.

[12]: (Lapidus 2012, 249) Ira M. Lapidus. 2012. Islamic Societies to the Nineteenth Century: A Global History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[13]: (Raymond 2000, 153) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[14]: (McEvedy and Jones, 1978, 138-47, 227) Colin McEvedy and Richard Jones. 1978. Atlas of World Population History. London: Allen Lane.

[15]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 21) Roland Oliver and Anthony Atmore. 2001. Medieval Africa, 1250-1800. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[16]: (Raymond 2000, 173-74) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[17]: (Raymond 2000, 154) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[18]: (Raymond 2000, 174) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[19]: (Raymond 2000, 180) André Raymond. 2000. Cairo. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

[20]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 21, 24) Roland Oliver and Anthony Atmore. 2001. Medieval Africa, 1250-1800. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

General Variables
Identity and Location
  Utm Zone:
36 R  
  Original Name:
Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate III  
  Capital:
Cairo  
  Alternative Name:
Circassian Mamluks  
Burji Mamluks  
Mamluk Sultanate  
Bahri Dynasty  
State of Turkey  
Dawla al Turkiyya  
Temporal Bounds
  Peak Years:
1,495 CE  
1,425 CE  
  Duration:
[1,412 CE ➜ 1,517 CE]  
Political and Cultural Relations
  Suprapolity Relations:
none  
  Supracultural Entity:
Islam  
  Succeeding Entity:
Ottoman Empire II  
  Scale of Supracultural Interaction:
11,000,000 km2  
  Relationship to Preceding Entity:
continuity  
  Preceding Entity:
Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate II  
  Degree of Centralization:
unitary state  
Language
  Linguistic Family:
Afro-Asiatic  
  Language:
Arabic  
Religion
  Religion Genus:
Islam  
  Religion Family:
Sunni  
  Religion:
Hanafi  
  Alternate Religion Genus:
Islam  
  Alternate Religion Family:
Sufi  
  Alternate Religion:
Shadhil  
Social Complexity Variables
Social Scale
Population of the Largest Settlement:
[150,000 to 400,000] people  
Polity Territory:
2,100,000 km2  
Polity Population:
3,200,000 people  
Hierarchical Complexity
Settlement Hierarchy:
[6 to 7]  
Religious Level:
[3 to 4]  
Military Level:
7  
Administrative Level:
7  
Professions
Professional Soldier:
present  
Professional Priesthood:
present  
Professional Military Officer:
present  
Bureaucracy Characteristics
Specialized Government Building:
present  
Merit Promotion:
present  
Full Time Bureaucrat:
present  
Examination System:
inferred absent  
Law
Professional Lawyer:
inferred present  
Judge:
present  
Formal Legal Code:
present  
Court:
absent  
Specialized Buildings: polity owned
Market:
present  
Irrigation System:
inferred present  
Food Storage Site:
inferred present  
Drinking Water Supply System:
present  
absent  
Transport Infrastructure
Road:
present  
Port:
inferred present  
Canal:
inferred present  
Bridge:
present  
Special-purpose Sites
Mines or Quarry:
present  
Information / Writing System
Written Record:
present  
Script:
present  
Phonetic Alphabetic Writing:
present  
Nonwritten Record:
present  
Non Phonetic Writing:
absent  
Mnemonic Device:
present  
Information / Kinds of Written Documents
Scientific Literature:
present  
Sacred Text:
present  
Religious Literature:
present  
Practical Literature:
present  
Philosophy:
inferred present  
Lists Tables and Classification:
present  
History:
present  
Fiction:
present  
Calendar:
present  
Information / Money
Token:
unknown  
Precious Metal:
inferred present  
Paper Currency:
absent  
Indigenous Coin:
present  
Foreign Coin:
inferred present  
Article:
present  
Information / Postal System
Postal Station:
present  
General Postal Service:
present  
Courier:
present  
Information / Measurement System
Warfare Variables (Military Technologies)
Fortifications
  Wooden Palisade:
unknown  
  Stone Walls Non Mortared:
present  
  Stone Walls Mortared:
present  
  Settlements in a Defensive Position:
present  
  Modern Fortification:
absent  
  Moat:
unknown  
  Fortified Camp:
present  
  Earth Rampart:
inferred present  
  Ditch:
present  
  Complex Fortification:
present  
Military use of Metals
  Steel:
present  
  Iron:
present  
  Copper:
present  
  Bronze:
present  
Projectiles
  Tension Siege Engine:
unknown  
  Sling Siege Engine:
present  
  Sling:
inferred absent  
  Self Bow:
unknown  
  Javelin:
inferred absent  
  Handheld Firearm:
present  
  Gunpowder Siege Artillery:
present  
  Crossbow:
present  
  Composite Bow:
present  
  Atlatl:
absent  
Handheld weapons
  War Club:
present  
  Sword:
present  
  Spear:
present  
  Polearm:
unknown  
  Dagger:
present  
  Battle Axe:
present  
Animals used in warfare
  Horse:
present  
  Elephant:
inferred absent  
  Donkey:
inferred present  
  Dog:
unknown  
  Camel:
present  
Armor
  Wood Bark Etc:
present  
  Shield:
present  
  Scaled Armor:
present  
  Plate Armor:
present  
  Limb Protection:
present  
  Leather Cloth:
present  
  Laminar Armor:
inferred present  
  Helmet:
present  
  Chainmail:
present  
  Breastplate:
inferred absent  
Naval technology
  Specialized Military Vessel:
present  
  Small Vessels Canoes Etc:
inferred present  
  Merchant Ships Pressed Into Service:
present  
Religion Tolerance Nothing coded yet.
Human Sacrifice Nothing coded yet.
Crisis Consequences Nothing coded yet.
Power Transitions Nothing coded yet.

NGA Settlements:

Year Range Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate III (eg_mamluk_sultanate_3) was in:
 (1412 CE 1516 CE)   Upper Egypt
Home NGA: Upper Egypt

General Variables
Identity and Location
Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate III

Circassian Mamluks Burji Mamluks Mamluk Sultanate Bahri Dynasty State of Turkey Dawla al Turkiyya

DESCRIPTION 1 Dawla_al-Turkiyya ... could not be machine read. State of Turkey or Dawla_al-Turkiyya EXTERNAL_INLINE_LINK: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dawla_al-Turkiyya "The second dynasty took the dynastic name of Circassian Mamluks (also Burji Mamluks, from the word for castle) (1382-1517)." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 112)


Temporal Bounds
1,495 CE 1,425 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 End of the Ottoman-Mamluk war (1485-1491 CE). Sultan Qaitbay (1468-1496 CE) commissioned a great amount of architecture and conducted 16 military campaigns.
For Cairo this period "is considered a period of decline, interrupted only by remissions during the reigns of Barsbay and Qaytbay." [1]
Cairo experienced an "urban and economic revitalization" in its "ancient center in the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 165)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 175)


[1,412 CE ➜ 1,517 CE]

DESCRIPTION 1 "The traditional division of the Mamluk period into a Bahri/Turkish dynasty (1250-1382) and a Burji/Circassian one (1382-1517) is an inheritance from medieval chroniclers, but it corresponds to no fundamental changes in the organization of the Mamluk state or in Egypt’s fortunes. A chronological division responsive to the vagaries of history seems preferable: first, a period of expansion and prosperity, encompassing particularly the reign of Nasir Muhammad, which may be said to end conveniently (if somewhat arbitrarily) in 1348. Next comes a period of crisis starting with the great plague epidemic of 1348, encompassing Tamerlane’s expedition, which brought ruin to Syria and decline to Egypt, and ending with the crisis of 1403 and the disastrous reign of Faraj. There follows a period of relative recovery, with a return to normality and periods of brilliance, even as the factors of decline (demographic stagnation in particular) continued to exercise their effects..." [1]
First Burji Sultan was Barquq from 1382 CE.
For Cairo this period "is considered a period of decline, interrupted only by remissions during thereigns of Barsbay and Qaytbay: the great Mamluk institutions experienced irreversible deterioration; the country faced external problems to the north that would bring about its fall, its demographic and economic bases collapsed, disorder and insecurity reigned." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 116-117)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 165)


Political and Cultural Relations
Scale of Supracultural Interaction:
11,000,000 km2

DESCRIPTION 1 km squared.


Egypt - Mamluk Sultanate II

Language
Arabic

DESCRIPTION 1 However, few Mamluks could speak Arabic. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle and McBride 1993, 4)


Social Complexity Variables
Social Scale
Population of the Largest Settlement:
[150,000 to 400,000] people

DESCRIPTION People. Originally coded as 150,000. Modified to a range to account for more possibilities. 150,000 corresponds to a mid-14th century estimate. AD
Fourteenth century Cairo - Raymond [1]
"The data available to us (location of mosques) suggests that the built-up area in 1348 was more extensive than can be supposed from Maqrizi’s information, but less extensive than is indicated by the Description de l’Egypte. As to Cairo’s population, it probably did not exceed 200,000. Paris had a population of only 80,000 in 1328 (in a built-up area of 437 hectares), and London a population of 60,000 in 1377 (on 288 hectares). Of the cities in the West at this period, only Constantinople could claim a greater population."
Demographic decline from 1348 CE (plague). [2]
"Michael Dols concludes that the total number of deaths came to one-third or two-fifths of the population of the city, a proposition that seems plausible given what we know about mortality from the Black Death in other localities (Europe, for example) and from other epidemics in other periods. We may therefore estimate that a reasonable figure would be 100,000 dead." [3]
Fifteenth century Cairo - Raymond [4]
"total built-up area of no more than 450 hectares. If we estimate the population density at 400 residents per hectare - a plausible average for classical Arab cities - we obtain a total population in the neighborhood of 150,000 residents, a distinctly lower estimate than the (Admittedly hypothetical) estimate we reached for the city in the middle of the fourteenth century."
Suggested estimates: 200,000-250,000 CE in 1300 CE; 150,000-200,000 in 1400 CE; 140,000-180,000 in 1500 CE. [5]
Cairo. 360,000: 1400 CE; 380,000: 1450 CE; 400,000: 1500 CE [6]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 136-137)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 116)

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 139-140)

[4]: (Raymond 2000, 152)

[5]: (Korotayev Andrey. Personal Communication to Jill Levine, Dan Hoyer, and Peter Turchin. May 2020.)

[6]: (Chase-Dunn Spreadsheet)


2,100,000 km2

DESCRIPTION KM2. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Turchin, Adams and Hall, 2006)


3,200,000 people

DESCRIPTION People.
6,000,000: 1500 CE. Egypt (4m), Levant (0.5m) and Syria (1.5m). [1]
Suggested estimates: 5-6 million in 1300 CE, 3.5 million in 1400 CE; 3.2 million in 1500 CE [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (McEvedy and Jones 1978)

[2]: (Korotayev Andrey. Personal Communication to Jill Levine, Dan Hoyer, and Peter Turchin. May 2020.)


Hierarchical Complexity
[6 to 7]

DESCRIPTION [1]
1. Cairo, capital.
2. Provincial capitals (e.g. Damascus)
3. Dependent cities (e.g. Mecca and Medina)
4. Large townships.
5. Small towns. [2]
6. Villages
7. Hamlets and Tribes.

Reference(s):

[1]: Luz, N. 2014. The Mamluk City in the Middle East: History, Culture, and the Urban Landscape. Cambridge University Press

[2]: Rabbat, N. 2010. Mamluk History through Architecture: Monuments, Culture and Politics in Medieval Egypt and Syria. Bloomsbury Publishing


[3 to 4]

DESCRIPTION
1. Sultan
2. Ulama - religious scholars [1] 3. Imams
???

Under Islamic law no slave could be sovereign. All Mamluk sultans performed a ritual demonstration of manumission at an inaugural ceremony. Manumission was performed at about 18 years old, following the Mamluk’s training. [2]
"Under the Mamluks the state appointed judges, legal administrators, professors, Sufi shaykhs, prayer leaders, and other Muslim officials. They paid the salaries of religious personnel, endowed their schools, and thus brought the religious establishment into a state bureaucracy. Never did the state attempt to define the content of religious teaching. Thus, the "Mamluks extended the Saljuq-Iranian pattern of organized religious life to Syria and Egypt." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Dols 1977, 153)

[2]: (Oliver 1977, 39-67)

[3]: (Lapidus 2012, 249)


7

DESCRIPTION 1. Sultan

2. Commander of Army
3. Naib al-Saltana (Viceroys of Egypt, Damascus etc.)
4. Emirs of a thousand
5. Emirs of a hundred
6. Emirs of forty
7. Emirs of ten
8. Junior officer
_ Nicolle (1996)_
Sultan
Commander of Army
Mamluk I: Naib al-Saltana (Viceroys of Egypt, Damascus etc.)
Mamluk II: Atabak al-asakir (Father of the Leader of Soldiers)
Mamluk III: Other titles with largely non-military status functions
Mamluk IV: Regular Mamluks
Mamluk V: Junior officer.
Rajjala I: Janib unit infantry leader
Rajjala II: Tulb unit infantry leader
Rajjala III: Jarida unit infantry leader
Mamluk army "essentially the same" as Ayyubid.
Professional haqa with an elite of slave-recruited Mamluks, called Royal Mamluks. Under Ayyubids, infantry was organized within the Rajjala. There was a military unit called a janib. The tulb was a smaller unit. A jarida was a small unit. A sariya was used in ambushes. [1]
_ Oliver (1977) describes the army structure this way _
Royal Mamluks
Of the Former Sultan
Of the Reigning Sultan
Of the Bodyguard and Pages
Of the Amirs
Mamluks of the Amirs
Of 100
Of 40
Of 10
Sons of Amirs and local population: Halqa. Initially knights of non-slave origin but eventually disappeared as military became a force of purely slave origin soldiers. [2]
_ Army structure according to Raymond [3] _
Sultan’s Mamluks (elite corps)

The troops of the emirs
emirs ranked in a hierarchy rank determined how many men under thememirs of a thousand [4]
emirs of a hundred
emirs of forty
emirs of ten
The halqa

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 135-181)

[2]: (Oliver 1977, 39-67)

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 113)

[4]: (Raymond 2000, 187)


7

DESCRIPTION
1. Sultan (Cairo)
During his absence Egypt/Cairo was governed by a viceroy (na’ib al-saltana) [1]
_ Central government line _ [2]
2a. Central administration"Army officers came from the Mamluk ranks. High government officials were also recruited from their number." [3]
"In a traditional society that lacked the concept of public or municipal agencies, as individuals, the members of this ruling class assumed responsibility for what we would consider public concerns." [4]
_ Cairo line _
2cairo Magistracies. "The administration of Cairo and its inhabitants was in the hands of three traditional magistracies. The judges (qudah; sing. qadi) had a very broad jurisdiction that covered matters of civil law, and many urban problems were addressed in their courts.3cairo Chief of the Sergeants of the watch. Top police prefect.4cairo "The police prefects (wulah; sing. wali) saw to public order and security. They were particularly responsible for making the rounds at night and therefore also of fighting fires." [5]
Overseer of the market (muhtasib) [6]
"The quarter served as an important basis of communal association and as an essential administrative unit." [7]
_ Egyptian line _
2egypt "diwan (government bureau) of Salar" [8]
3egypt Na’ib, governor of a mamlaka, an administrative district [9]
4egypt Governor of a small town
5egypt. Village head.
_ Syrian line _
2syria Syrian chief governor [10] Viceroy?3syria Na’ib, governor of a mamlaka, an administrative district [9] e.g. the bureaucracy niyaba of Safed contained:4. katib al-sirr/katib al-insha (chief secretary who wrote governor’s letters, read mail) [11] 5. muwaqqi (who ratified the governor’s letters) [11] 6. katib al-dast [11] 7. katib al-darj (minor correspondent) [11]
nazir (overseer who was responsible for financial management, expenditure, salaries) [12]
kashif (inspector of bridges, agricultural lands and irrigation canals) [13]
muhtasib (market inspector) [13]
nazir diwan al-jaysh (superintendant of fiefs) [13]
nazir al-mal (financial controller) [13]
4. governor also had a dawadar (personal assistant) often sent to the villages to represent the governor and an ustadar (private caretaker) [14]
4syria wali al-wulat of a niyaba [8] "The wali was a police officer in charge of keeping law and order in town. His rank: Amir of Ten. One should not confuse him with wali al-wulat, who was higher in authority and rank, being an Amir of Forty, and who was responsible for the minor sub-sections (wilaya) of the entire region (niyaba). [8]
often the wali al-wulat also doubled as the shadd or mushidd al-dawawin "whose duty it was to check and observe the collection of the Sultans’ dues and taxes from state estates." [8]
5syria Wali, officer of a small town"The wali was a police officer in charge of keeping law and order in town. His rank: Amir of Ten. One should not confuse him with wali al-wulat, who was higher in authority and rank, being an Amir of Forty, and who was responsible for the minor sub-sections (wilaya) of the entire region (niyaba). [8]
6syria Village head.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 152)

[2]: (Nicolle 1996, 135-181)

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 113)

[4]: (Dols 1977, 152)

[5]: (Raymond 2000, 153)

[6]: (Raymond 2000, 154)

[7]: (Dols 1977, 153)

[8]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 178)

[9]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 169)

[10]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 176)

[11]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 180-181)

[12]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 180)

[13]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 181-182)

[14]: (Joseph Drory in Winter and Levanoni 2004, 172)


Professions
present

DESCRIPTION [1]
"For rank-and-file mamluks, military salaries were their main sources of income and it is clear that throughout the medieval period, military wages were almost always above those earned by skilled craftsmen." [2]
"‘Iqta fiefs were allocated to those of senior or sometimes middle rank. These men were called muqtas. In the Mamluk Sultanate a muqta maintained a certain number of soldiers, his own mamluks and sometimes other lesser troops. He and his military household then owed military service to the sultan. The muqta also paid his troops’ expenses from the revenues of his ‘iqta. The men would then purchase what they required on campaign from the suq al-‘askar ‘soldiers’ market’. Each regular soldier was also paid, either by his muqta or by the sultan." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver 1977, 41)

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Mamluk state "paid the salaries of religious personnel, endowed their schools, and thus brought the religious establishment into a state bureaucracy." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Lapidus 2002, 294)


present

DESCRIPTION Army funded by Mamluk elite through their iqta (estates). These iqta holders formed an aristocracy, and they usually lived in Cairo or Damascus (rather than on their estates). [1]
"‘Iqta fiefs were allocated to those of senior or sometimes middle rank. These men were called muqtas. In the Mamluk Sultanate a muqta maintained a certain number of soldiers, his own mamluks and sometimes other lesser troops. He and his military household then owed military service to the sultan. The muqta also paid his troops’ expenses from the revenues of his ‘iqta. The men would then purchase what they required on campaign from the suq al-‘askar ‘soldiers’ market’. Each regular soldier was also paid, either by his muqta or by the sultan." [2]
"Army officers came from the Mamluk ranks." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996,135-181)

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 113)


Bureaucracy Characteristics
Specialized Government Building:
present

DESCRIPTION Government offices, customs offices, postal stations, offices of military administration.
Register of the army, in Cairo.


present

DESCRIPTION "Promotions were granted according to precise rules and could lead to the highest positions in the government, both military (atabak al-asakir, general-in-chief; amir silah, director of the arsenal; amir akhur, supreme commander of the army) and administrative (amir majlis, emir of the audience; dawawar, chancellor), as well as to the governorship of the provinces. ... To be acclaimed sultan was naturally the chief career objective of a capable and ambitious emir. One might reach it through seniority, merit, cabal, intrigue, or violence." [1]
"Elite personnel of the regime, including the sultan, were slaves or former slaves. In principle, although there were important exceptions, no one could be a member of the military elite unless he was of foreign origin (usually Turkish or Circassian), purchased and raised as a slave, and trained to be a soldier and administrator. No native of Egypt or Syria could ever belong to this elite, nor, in principle, could the sons of slaves." [2]
"The Mamluks’ descendants, the awlad al-nas ... were in theory prohibited from holding political or military office. The rule, however, was subject to exceptions..." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 113-114)

[2]: (Lapidus 2012, 247)

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 113)


present

DESCRIPTION "Although mamluks could marry, their children could never become mamluks. Thus, the foreign elite had constantly to be replenished by fresh recruits from the northern borderlands of Islam, educated in the discipline of a military household, and dependent for their manumission and their subsequent promotion upon their professional patrons and superiors." [1]
Professional bureaucrats recruited from the ranks of enslaved people and free people (e.g. tax administrators were mostly free Copts). [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 16) Oliver R and Atmore A. 2001. Medieval Africa 1250-1800. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

[2]: (Korotayev Andrey. Personal Communication to Jill Levine, Dan Hoyer, and Peter Turchin. May 2020.)


absent

DESCRIPTION Mamluk slaves trained and likely tested and advanced on merit but career depended on master achieving office. No centralized examination system for the government. needs to be checked


Law
present

DESCRIPTION four major schools of law
"In 1263, Sultan Baybars (1260-77) appointed a chief qadi for each of the four major schools of law, a chief shaykh (master, teacher) for the Sufis, and a syndic for the corporation of descendants of the Prophet (naqib al-ashraf). Under the Mamluks the state appointed judges, legal administrators, professors, Sufi shaykhs, prayer leaders and other Muslim officials." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Lapidus 2012, 249)


present

DESCRIPTION Chief judges. [1] "Under the Mamluks the state appointed judges, legal administrators, professors, Sufi shaykhs, prayer leaders, and other Muslim officials." [2]
"In 1263, Sultan Baybars (1260-77) appointed a chief qadi for each of the four major schools of law, a chief shaykh (master, teacher) for the Sufis, and a syndic for the corporation of descendants of the Prophet (naqib al-ashraf). Under the Mamluks the state appointed judges, legal administrators, professors, Sufi shaykhs, prayer leaders and other Muslim officials." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Lapidus 2012, 248)

[2]: (Lapidus 2002, 294)

[3]: (Lapidus 2012, 249)


present

DESCRIPTION Slaves had "legal rights, almost as if they had been adopted as ‘foster sons’ by a master who accepted legal obligations as their ‘foster father’." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


absent

DESCRIPTION Prior to the Ottoman conquest in 1517, Egypt had no courts, and judges conducted business from their homes [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Andrey Korotayev, personal communication, March 2018)


Specialized Buildings: polity owned
present

DESCRIPTION Markets "maintained right up until the end of Mamluk rule". [1] "In a traditional society that lacked the concept of public or municipal agencies, as individuals, the members of this ruling class assumed responsibility for what we would consider public concerns. The mamluks were patrons of art, schools, and mosques; builders of roads, bridges, and markets; and overseers of "public works," morality, and charity." [2] "The markets were open structures on either side of a street at a crossroads, in most cases simply a series of shops. Generally grouped according to occupation, they were most often spontaneous developments, although some were built by powerful personages. ... The caravanserais, on the other and, were monumental structures." [3] Mamluk urban development: "the Suwayqa al-Izzi ... would remain one of the busiest markets in Cairo right to the end of the eighteenth century." [4] Caravanserais were built in the early 15th century by charitable and religious foundations. [5] Sultan Ghuri built a "great caravanseri (wakala) in 1504 CE and rebuilt the Khan- al-Khalili. [6] One of Qatybay’s top officials, Emir Azback min Tutukh, governor of Syria and commander-in-chief (atabek) between 1476-1484 CE undertook a construction project intended to finance a religious foundation (waqf). Buildings included a commercial and financial complex and shops." [7]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 21) Oliver R and Atmore A. 2001. Medieval Africa 1250-1800. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

[2]: (Dols 1977, 152)

[3]: (Raymond 2000, 158)

[4]: (Raymond 2000, 132)

[5]: (Raymond 2000, 174)

[6]: (Raymond 2000, 174-175)

[7]: (Raymond 2000, 182-183)


present

DESCRIPTION Increasingly government could not afford upkeep of canals, dams and irrigation systems. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver 1977, 39-67)


present absent

DESCRIPTION "For its water supply Cairo depended on the carriage of water from the Nile and its distribution to the streets and houses, a service paid for by the user: "One encounters many strong, handsome pack camels, used solely to carry water from the Nile. which is then sold throughout the city," noted Frescobaldi in 1384." Something similar was said in 1436 CE by Pero Tafur. [1] "Sabil public water source north of Cairo’s Citadel. Dating from the mid-14th century, it is decorated with the heraldic motif of its sponsor, the Mamluk Amir al-Kabir Sayf al-Din Shaykhu al-Nasiri." [2] "The remarkable aqueduct that brought water from the Nile to the Citadel of Cairo was built in steps, each originally marked by a saqiya water-mill. It was re-activated in the first half of the 14th century to bring water to a Mamluk palace complex at the southern end of the citadel." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 154)

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


Transport Infrastructure
present

DESCRIPTION Roads "maintained right up until the end of Mamluk rule". [1] In 1322 CE Simon Simeonis described the streets of Cairo as "narrow, tortuous, dark, rich in recesses, full of dust and other refuse, and unpaved." [2] "In a traditional society that lacked the concept of public or municipal agencies, as individuals, the members of this ruling class assumed responsibility for what we would consider public concerns. The mamluks were patrons of art, schools, and mosques; builders of roads, bridges, and markets; and overseers of "public works," morality, and charity." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 21) Oliver R and Atmore A. 2001. Medieval Africa 1250-1800. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 154)

[3]: (Dols 1977, 152)


present

DESCRIPTION Present within the earlier Mamluk period.


present

DESCRIPTION Present within the earlier Mamluk period.


present

DESCRIPTION Bridges "maintained right up until the end of Mamluk rule". [1] Bridge over Abu’l Managga irrigation canal. [2] "In a traditional society that lacked the concept of public or municipal agencies, as individuals, the members of this ruling class assumed responsibility for what we would consider public concerns. The mamluks were patrons of art, schools, and mosques; builders of roads, bridges, and markets; and overseers of "public works," morality, and charity." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 21) Oliver R and Atmore A. 2001. Medieval Africa 1250-1800. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.

[3]: (Dols 1977, 152)


Special-purpose Sites
Information / Writing System Information / Kinds of Written Documents
present

DESCRIPTION Experimental weapons research, such as advanced pyrotechnics and a "rocket-powered torpedo". [1] Hospital established by Sultan Qalaun (1279-1290 CE) "included not only wards with a regular medical staff, lecture rooms, and laboratories but also an adjoining library of medical, theological, and legal books." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)

[2]: (Dols 1977, 177)


present

DESCRIPTION Qur’an.


present

DESCRIPTION Theological books. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Dols 1977, 177)


present

DESCRIPTION Exercise books. [1] "An Exposition of the Rules Concerning the Streets of Cairo." [2] Legal books. [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 112)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 173)

[3]: (Dols 1977, 177)


present

DESCRIPTION Highly literature society.


Lists Tables and Classification:
present

DESCRIPTION Encyclopaedias and manuals: Al-Qalqasband (1355-1418 CE). [1] Land registry [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver 1977, 66)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 168)


present

DESCRIPTION Al-Maqrizi (1364-1442 CE), historian of Cairo [1] . Historical topography Cairo and Egypt, work on plagues, coins, Islam in Ethiopia. Ibn Iyas (1448-1525 CE): chronicler with some very detailed work. Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406 CE) last 20 years in Egypt. [2] Al Suyuti (1445-1505 CE) universal historian, author of over 500 books. [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 117)

[2]: (Oliver 1977, 66)

[3]: (Oliver 1977, 67)


present

DESCRIPTION "The Mamluk court listened to Turkish and Circassian poetry." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Lapidus 2012, 248)


Information / Money
present

DESCRIPTION Silver coinage becoming copper coinage following the Circassian takeover. [1] dirhams. [2] Fluctuation in economy during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries which impacted the rise and fall of wages. Unskilled labourers made on average 3 dinars per month [3] [4] Plague and other factors in the 15th century caused fluctuation and decrease in wages for unskilled workers, some receiving 3 dinars each month and 33.3 dinars per year, some waqf workers as low as 7 gold dinars per year. [5]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Levanoni 1995, 133)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 112)

[3]: Scheidel, W. 2010. Real Wages in Early Economies: Evidence for Living Standards from 1800 BCE to 1300 CE. Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, 53(3), 425-462.

[4]: Meloy, J. 2001. Copper Money in Late Mamluk Cairo: Chaos or Control? Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, 44(3), 293-321

[5]: (42) Borsch, Stuart. 2014. "Subsisting or Succumbing? Falling Wages in the Era of Plague." Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg Working Papers 13 (May 2014): 1-46


present

DESCRIPTION "In pre-modern times ... Geographically well-defined borders of currency zones hardly existed. If they did exist then it was for economic and fiscal reasons." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Heidemann 2009, 276 [1])


Information / Postal System
present

DESCRIPTION Al-Barid postal system. Routes: Cairo to Qus in Upper Egypt; Cairo to Alexandria, Damietta and Syria. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Silverstein 2007, 173)


present

DESCRIPTION Al-Barid postal system. Routes: Cairo to Qus in Upper Egypt; Cairo to Alexandria, Damietta and Syria. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Silverstein 2007, 173)


Information / Measurement System
Warfare Variables (Military Technologies)
Fortifications
present

DESCRIPTION present in preceding Ayyubate Sultanate


present

DESCRIPTION Height of the wall encircling Cairo citadel was raised. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 179)


Settlements in a Defensive Position:
present

DESCRIPTION present in preceding Ayyubate Sultanate


present

DESCRIPTION Ditch. Camp was a circle of tents with a ditch and an advance guard. [1] "A concern for morale and a tradition of efficient administration lay behind the cleanliness and good order of mamluk military camps, especially during sieges such as that of Acre in 1291. Such encampments had baths with warm water and professional attendants, along with latrines for the officers and probably for ordinary mamluks." [2] 1517 CE the troops of Ottoman sultan Selim "stormed the fortified camp of al-Raydaniyya, outside Cairo." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 135-181)

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.

[3]: (Oliver and Atmore 2001, 25) Oliver R and Atmore A. 2001. Medieval Africa 1250-1800. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.


present

DESCRIPTION Walls of Cairo protected by ditch in preceding Ayyubate Sultanate [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 88)


present

DESCRIPTION Small forts used as coastal warning system. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


Military use of Metals
present

DESCRIPTION "Though the iron mines of Lebanon had been virtually exhausted, craftsmen still made high quality arms in Damascus. Those who produced real steel were closely supervised by the Mamluk authorities to stop cheating or a decline in standards." However many armourers lost as a result of Timur’s invasion and abduction of craftsmen, and although the industry was not finished the Mamluks subsequently made efforts to import European weapons, armour, and craftsmen. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Iron mace. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Greek fire projected through copper tube. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1986, 40) Nicolle, D. 1986. Saladin and the Saracens. Osprey Publishing Ltd. Oxford.


present

DESCRIPTION Especially trimmings on weapons/armour. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


Projectiles
present

DESCRIPTION Counter-weight mangonel/trebuchet common from 13th Century. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


absent

DESCRIPTION no mention in sources so far consulted.


absent

DESCRIPTION no mention in sources so far consulted.


present

DESCRIPTION Used in low numbers. Mamluks had a cultural resistance to the introduction of fire-arms (cannon and arquebuses). [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Oliver 1977, 39-67)


present

DESCRIPTION "experimented with cannons as early as 1464 and, at their last gasp, after Ghuri was crushed at Marj Dabiq (24 August 1516), organizing a corps of portable artillery and mounted gunmen." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 167)


present

DESCRIPTION Mounted crossbowmen. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996,135-181)


present

DESCRIPTION Composite bows. [1] "armored cavalry equipped with swords and bows" [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 167)


absent

DESCRIPTION new world weapon


Handheld weapons
present

DESCRIPTION Mace. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION "armored cavalry equipped with swords and bows" [1] Sabre. [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 167)

[2]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Lances. [1] Spears. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Dagger. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION War axe. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


Animals used in warfare
present

DESCRIPTION [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996,135-181)


absent

DESCRIPTION The Mamluks did not use war elephants. [1] However, three elephants (ceremonial use only?) observed in a procession departing for a campaign 1516 CE "decorated with pennants". [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.

[2]: (Raymond 2000, 187)


present

DESCRIPTION Present in Mamluk Egypt e.g. Cairo (mentioned in the context of riding so pack use must be inferred) where foreign travellers were "particularly impressed by the omnipresence of donkeys. ... Abu Sa’id is quoted as remarking that he had never before seen so many donkeys in any city he had visited." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Shehada 2013, 19) Housni Alkhateeb Shehada. 2013. Mamluks and Animals. Veterinary Medicine in Medieval Islam. BRILL. Leiden.


present

DESCRIPTION Camels used to carry baggage. "On major campaigns, 13th- and 14th-century mamluks each received one or two baggage camels whereas every two non-elite halqa soldiers shared three camels." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


Armor
present

DESCRIPTION Earlier Mamluk period: illustration suggests wood used in shields. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Steel shields. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Mamluk qarqal (scale or lamellar coat). Small iron scales sewn into fabric. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


present

DESCRIPTION Mail and plate cuirass. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION "Mail and plate armour for the thigh and knee." There was also upper limb protection. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Rawhide worked into mail and plate cuirass armour "to make the collar semi-stiff". [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Earlier Mamluk period: laminated leather cuirass and rawhide lamellar cuirass. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 2014) Nicolle, D. 2014 Mamluk Askar 1250-1517. Osprey Publishing Ltd.


present

DESCRIPTION Worn over a skull-cap padded with fibre to which helmet was fastened. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


present

DESCRIPTION Mail armour. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


absent

DESCRIPTION Not mentioned in sources so far consulted.


Naval technology
present

DESCRIPTION Naval shipyards in Bulaq. Cyprus conquered 1426 CE. [1] Fleet built in response to Portuguese activity in the Indian Ocean. Sent to India in 1507 CE. [2] The Mamluks had marines, lead by a qaid, and a rais al milaha who captained military ship and commanded sailors. [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Raymond 2000, 185)

[2]: (Oliver 1977, 39-67)

[3]: (Nicolle 1996, 159-181)


present

DESCRIPTION Inferred from necessity of Nile travel.


Merchant Ships Pressed Into Service:
present

DESCRIPTION ’Mamluk attack on Yemen ‘Husayn, with the main body of vessels, set out for Aden while Salman caught up with the trading vessels which were laden with goods. He left them unharmed and simply exchanged his own sea captain for the Tahirid on the sultan’s ship. This was in order to ensure that they obtained the revenues from the sale of the goods and he also took the precaution of sending a letter to the sultan of Gujarat telling him that Yemen now belonged to them. The ship’s captain was instructed to return with provisions, wood and iron.’"’ Husayn al-Kurdf then began his siege of Aden, heavily bombarding the city from the ships.’ [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Porter, Venetia Ann (1992) The history and monuments of the Tahirid dynasty of the Yemen 858-923/1454-1517, Durham theses, Durham University, p. 131, Available at Durham E-Theses Online: http://etheses.dur.ac.uk/5867/


Human Sacrifice Data
Human Sacrifice is the deliberate and ritualized killing of a person to please or placate supernatural entities (including gods, spirits, and ancestors) or gain other supernatural benefits.
- Nothing coded yet.