By Thomas Philipp

Thomas Philipp's research of Acre combines the main large use to this point of neighborhood Arabic resources with advertisement documents in Europe to make clear a zone and gear middle many determine because the starting of contemporary Palestinian historical past. The 3rd greatest urban in eighteenth-century Syria—after Aleppo and Damascus—Acre used to be the capital of a politically and economically detailed zone at the Mediterranean coast that incorporated what's at the present time northern Israel and southern Lebanon. within the eighteenth century, Acre grew dramatically from a small fishing village to a fortified urban of a few 25,000 population. funds vegetation (first cotton, then grain) made Acre the guts of alternate and political energy and associated it inextricably to the realm financial system. Acre used to be markedly various from different towns within the sector: its city society consisted virtually completely of immigrants looking their fortune.

The upward push and fall of Acre within the eighteenth and 19th centuries, Thomas Philipp argues,...

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Extra info for Acre. The Rise and Fall of a Palestinian City, 1730-1831

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Depending on the individual consul and the circumstances, we also find detailed memos on political events, which are usefully juxtaposed with the accounts from other sources. The copious travel literature to the Holy Land and Syria must be looked at cautiously. It shares all the weaknesses of general travel literature—exaggerations, search for the exotic, superficial impressions, copying of other travelers’ writings, strictly personal viewpoints, etc. Yet there are the occasional superb reports by travelers, lending an outsider’s keen eye to the observation of local circumstances.

Yet there are the occasional superb reports by travelers, lending an outsider’s keen eye to the observation of local circumstances. Critical analysis of the travelers’ texts can provide insights on a large variety of issues. The Ottoman archives concerning the region have been extensively used in A. Cohen’s work on Palestine in the eighteenth century. They concern mainly fiscal, tax, and administrative affairs and relations to the central government. Sorely missing from the list of archives are any local archives in Acre: the sijillāt of the courts, for instance, or private materials.

The appearance of Russian ships and the Ottoman fleet on the Syrian coast between 1770 and 1776, though, remained rather tentative. After 1798 only the British navy was able to project its power successfully in the region. After the end of the Egyptian occupation in 1840 the newly strengthened central government of the Ottoman Empire never again allowed quasi-independent rulers such as those of the Acre region to emerge in Syria. The increasing integration of the Syrian hinterland into the European economy during the nineteenth century, especially after the arrival of the steamship, made the development of the infrastructure—first roads, then railways—a necessity.

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Acre. The Rise and Fall of a Palestinian City, 1730-1831 by Thomas Philipp


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