Abstract Prof. Dr. Jürgen Paul
“ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURES, CONCEPTS, APPROACHES, AND COMPARISONS”
Nov. 27-29, 2014, Universität Hamburg
“ᶜAbbāsid Administrative Legacy in the Seljūq World: Where Khidma and Niᶜma Ruled”
The ᶜAbbāsid legacy in the Seljuq empire can be described in several ways. My focus will be on the links between provincial governors and the central ruler in the first half of the 12th century, in particular Sanjar’s empire. Whereas in the period of direct ᶜAbbāsid rule (until the mid-9th century roughly), provinces had been administered from the center and governors changed quickly, this had changed radically by the 12th century. Provinces were either dynastic appanages or fell to slave and other emirs as “administrative iqṭāᶜ”. The links between ruler and governor were personal instead of institutional, and central control was no longer possible, perhaps not even aspired to. Therefore, links of personal loyalty between ruler and governor became much more important. These personal links were formulated as khidma-niᶜma bonds by the 12th century (and probably since the breakup of the directly administered empire).
The spatial makeup of the empire therefore also changed. The empire no longer was a more or less uniform space (it probably never had been that). Several zones can be clearly distinguished: A core zone where the central divan ruled; a “household zone” where Sanjar’s emirs ruled as hereditary regional rulers; a “vassalitic” zone where earlier dynasties carried on although the rulers recognised Sanjar as their overlord.