Captives or crooks? Pirates, impostors, and Jewish communities in the eighteenth century Ottoman Empire

In the present article, based on Ottoman and Hebrew documents, we focus on peoplewho made up fictitious stories of captivity in order to gain a living, as well as onauthorities or local Jewish communities that detected and coped with those frauds inthe eighteenth-century Ottoman Empire. In detecting acts of fraud, a novel method 10 adopted by Jewish communities during the period under study was printed letters thatwere not available to all segments of society. Considering the vigilance of Jewish communities to root out the ploys used by their co-religionists to acquire moneythrough deceitful means, we suggest that those communities formulated some regulations in order to validate authenticity and differentiate between the true and the fake. 15 We argue that an efficient web of networks among early modern Jewish communitiesin the Mediterranean and the use of the printing press played a crucial role in certifying the truthfulness of a document or a person
Mediterranean Historical Review


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Citation Formats
G. Karagedikli, “Captives or crooks? Pirates, impostors, and Jewish communities in the eighteenth century Ottoman Empire,” Mediterranean Historical Review, pp. 189–209, 2020, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: