The studies presented in this collection are concerned most particularly with the material conditions of life in the mature Ottoman state of the 16th-18th centuries.
They range from the evaluation of sources of livelihood and conditions in the workplace on the one hand, to notions of domesticity and organization of the private sphere on the other, and deal with the provinces, in both the Balkans and in Asia, as much as with Istanbul.
At the same time the volume aims to illuminate Ottoman imperial institutional forms and norms as they existed in the high imperial era before the rapid change and transformation associated with late imperial times when the empire was more exposed both to global economic forces and external political pressures.
This concentration on the relatively stable conditions that prevailed in the empire throughout the bulk of the early modern era (ca. 1450-ca. 1750) provides the reader with an opportunity to assess Ottoman institutional development and observe social and economic organization in their relatively 'pure' state before the double impact of industrialization and increasing Westernization in the late nineteenth century.