Ottoman Empire, Sancak of Semendire, defterology, tapu tahrir defteri, taxation system, öşür, resim
In 1741 a detailed defter for the Sancak of Semendire was created during the postclassical period, during which the significance of this type of documents in bureaucratic practice was brought to minimum as a result of the process of fiscal transformation. The lifting of tax burden imposed on the landholdings, crisis of the spahia-tymar system, privatisation of the mechanism of tax collecting through the ‘iltizam’ system, all resulted in the transformation of the form of address between the centre and the periphery. As during the transition period (17th-18th centuries) defters appeared sporadically and most often after a certain territory had been brought back to the Ottoman rule, modern historiography has introduced the term postclassical defterology. The primary characteristics of these defters are the lesser credibility of data, their dependence on the principles of earlier Ottoman defters, rather than on the principle of the system of governance established there by the foreign management, and the creation of defters on the principles based on the size of the landed property for each particular household (hane). The Semendire Sancak defter of 1741 did not record the area of the landholding, but was obliged to follow a similar principle in relation to the differences in rate of taxation for each settlement in particular. The paper presents the pattern of taxation, points to variations in the two existing defter registers (TTD 17 and TTD 18), and makes reference to the relevant original, provides transliteration and translation.