Mamluk Cairo, a Crossroads for Embassies

Studies on Diplomacy and Diplomatics


Mamluk Cairo, a Crossroads for Embassies offers an up-to-date insight into the diplomacy and diplomatics of the Mamluk sultanate with Muslim and non-Muslim powers. This rich volume covers the whole chronological span of the sultanate as well as the various areas of the diplomatic relations established by (or with) the Mamluk sultanate. Twenty-six essays are divided in geographical sections that broadly respect the political division of the world as the Mamluk chancery perceived it. In addition, two introductory essays provide the present stage of research in the fields of, respectively, diplomatics and diplomacy. With contributions by Frédéric Bauden, Lotfi Ben Miled, Michele Bernardini, Bárbara Boloix Gallardo, Anne F. Broadbridge, Mounira Chapoutot-Remadi, Stephan Conermann, Nicholas Coureas, Malika Dekkiche, Rémi Dewière, Kristof D’hulster, Marie Favereau, Gladys Frantz-Murphy, Yehoshua Frenkel, Hend Gilli-Elewy, Ludvik Kalus, Anna Kollatz, Julien Loiseau, Maria Filomena Lopes de Barros, John L. Meloy, Pierre Moukarzel, Lucian Reinfandt, Alessandro Rizzo, Éric Vallet, Valentina Vezzoli and Patrick Wing.

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Frédéric Bauden, Ph.D. (1996), is Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Liège. His research focuses on Mamluk historiography, diplomatics, and codicology. He is the editor of the bookseries Bibliotheca Maqriziana (Leiden: Brill). He is completing a book on al-Maqrīzī’s collection of opuscules. Malika Dekkiche, Ph.D. (2011), is Assistant Professor of Medieval Middle Eastern and Mediterranean History at the University of Antwerp. Her research focuses on premodern Islamic diplomacy, state formation, religious patronage and more generally on the history of the Mamluk sultanate, Timurid and Turkmen dynasties.
"In addition to the focus on diplomacy, this volume offers a wealth of material on society, religion, and politics and on the range of government officials, soldiers, scholars, and merchants during the Mamluk era. These contributions provide an important resource for anyone interested in the broad historical reach of the Mamluks." - Daniel Varisco in Journal of the American Oriental Society 141.1 (2021).
Preface Abbreviations Charts, Figures, and Tables Notes on Contributors
1 Mamluk Diplomatics: the Present State of ResearchFrédéric Bauden
2 Mamluk Diplomacy: the Present State of ResearchMalika Dekkiche

Part 1 Diplomatic Conventions

3 Diplomatics, or Another Way to See the WorldMalika Dekkiche
4 Strong Letters at the Mamluk CourtLucian Reinfandt
5 Embassies and Ambassadors in Mamluk CairoYehoshua Frenkel

Part 2 The Mongols and Their Successors

6 Careers in Diplomacy among Mamluks and Mongols, 658–741/1260–1341Anne F. Broadbridge
7 The Golden Horde and the Mamluks: the Birth of a Diplomatic Set-Up (660–5/1261–7)Marie Favereau
8 Mamluk-Ilkhanid Diplomatic Contacts: Negotiations or Posturing?Reuven Amitai
9 Baghdad between Cairo and Tabriz: Emissaries to the Mamluks as Expressions of Local Political Ambitions and Ideologies during the Seventh/Thirteenth and Eighth/Fourteenth CenturiesHend Gilli-Elewy
10 Between Iraq and a Hard Place: Sulṭān Aḥmad Jalāyir’s Time as a Refugee in the Mamluk SultanatePatrick Wing

Part 3 The Timurids, the Turkmens, and the Ottomans

11 Niẓām al-Dīn Shāmī’s Description of the Syrian Campaign of TīmūrMichele Bernardini
12 Diplomatic Entanglements between Tabriz, Cairo, and Herat: a Reconstructed Qara Qoyunlu Letter Datable to 818/1415Frédéric Bauden
13 Fixed Rules to a Changing Game? Sultan Meḥmed II’s Realignment of Ottoman-Mamluk Diplomatic ConventionsKristof D’hulster

Part 4 The Western Islamic Lands

14 Diplomatic Correspondence between Nasrid Granada and Mamluk Cairo: the Last Hope for al-AndalusBárbara Boloix-Gallardo
15 Entre Ifrīqiya hafside et Égypte mamelouke: Des relations anciennes, continues et consolidéesMounira Chapoutot-Remadi
16 Tracking Down the Hafsid Diplomatic Missions All the Way to the Turco-Mamluk Borders (892–6/1487–91)Lotfi Ben Miled

Part 5 Arabia, India, and Africa

17 Diplomatic Networks of Rasulid Yemen in Egypt (Seventh/Thirteenth to Early Ninth/Fifteenth Centuries)Éric Vallet
18 “Aggression in the Best of Lands”: Mecca in Egyptian-Indian Diplomacy in the Ninth/Fifteenth CenturyJohn L. Meloy
19 Some Remarks on the Diplomatic Relations between Cairo, Delhi/Dawlatābād, and Aḥmadābād during the Eighth/Fourteenth and Ninth/Fifteenth CenturiesStephan Conermann and Anna Kollatz
20 The Ḥaṭī and the Sultan: Letters and Embassies from Abyssinia to the Mamluk CourtJulien Loiseau
21 “Peace Be upon Those Who Follow the Right Way”: Diplomatic Practices between Mamluk Cairo and the Borno Sultanate at the End of the Eighth/Fourteenth CenturyRémi Dewière

Part 6 The Latin West

22 The European Embassies to the Court of the Mamluk Sultans in CairoPierre Moukarzel
23 In the Name of the Minorities: Lisbon’s Muslims as Emissaries from the King of Portugal to the Sultan of EgyptMaria Filomena Lopes de Barros
24 Envoys between Lusignan Cyprus and Mamluk Egypt, 838–78/1435–73: the Accounts of Pero Tafur, George Boustronios and Ibn Taghrī BirdīNicholas Coureas
25 Negotiating the Last Mamluk-Venetian Commercial Decree (922–3/1516–7): Commercial Liability from the Sixth/Twelfth to the Early Tenth/Sixteenth CenturyGladys Frantz-Murphy
26 Three Mamluk Letters Concerning the Florentine Trade in Egypt and Syria: a New InterpretationAlessandro Rizzo

Part 7 Material Culture

27 Écritoires: objets fonctionnels et symboliques indissociables des cérémonies officielles à l’ époque mameloukeLudvik Kalus
28 Precious Objects for Eminent Guests: the Use of Chinese Ceramics in Mamluk Cairo: the Fustat Ceramic Collection from The Royal Museums of Art and History (Brussels)Valentina Vezzoli
All interested in the history of the Mamluk sultanate, diplomatics, diplomacy, and anyone concerned with documents, gifts, and protocol.
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