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Ottoman Seas and British Privateers: Defining Maritime Territoriality in the Eighteenth-Century Levant

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates the impact of British privateering on Ottoman maritime territoriality from 1690 and 1790 to examine the discourse concerning rule over the sea on the part of the Ottoman state. It first describes the differing theoretical works from both the Christian European and Islamic traditions concerning maritime territoriality. The chapter then analyzes the Ottoman declarative responses to British privateers in Ottoman waters. It further explains how far the Ottomans were able to implement their declarations. The chapter articulates the extent to which the Ottomans had possession over the waters they claimed as their territory. Finally, it draws much inspiration from Colin Heywood's article, "Ottoman Territoriality versus Maritime Usage", which examined the impact of British privateers on Ottoman maritime territoriality during Britain's wars with France at the turn of the eighteenth century.

Keywords: British privateers; Islamic tradition; Levant; maritime territoriality; Ottoman Empire



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