Land and Society in the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia: From the Thirteenth to the Twentieth Century
Donald Crummey's monumental work is the first extended history of Ethiopia to focus on the system of taxation and tribute, called gult, that underpinned the region's social and political structure for some seven centuries.
Land and Society in the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia offers an original perspective on how the rulers of Ethiopia -- one of the great subcenters of agricultural innovation and development -- used land to support their dominion. Crummey draws on all the surviving documents pertaining to the holding and granting of agricultural land in the Ethiopian highlands from the thirteenth to the twentieth century. By examining how social relations affected the conditions for economic production and how people of power drew on the wealth created by society's basic producers, he provides new insight into how ordinary farming and herding folk were incorporated into and affected by the institutions that ruled them.
Crummey makes imaginative use of previously overlooked documents, particularly property records that were written in the margins and flyleaves of Ethiopian manuscripts. Primarily liturgical manuscripts that often contained records of the holdings of religious institutions, these documents also shed light on lay strategies of accumulation and transmission of wealth in land. Based on these records, Crummey determines that the persistence over centuries of a continuing pattern of social inequality can only be explained by the social character of gult as a foundation of enduring relations between the tribute payer and the tribute receiver.
Presenting new evidence to suggest that the nature of landed property and social class in Ethiopia was considerably moresophisticated than hitherto recognized, Land and Society in the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia constitutes a major challenge to previous assumptions and understandings about land and social relations in this highly structured society.
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List of Tables Charts Maps and Illustrations
Gult and the State 12001540
Gult Grants 12001508
Items Used to Define Gult Payments 12001540
Zämänä Mäsafent 176984
The Principal Sources
Royal Churches in and around Gondär Town in order of their founding
Sales of Measured Plots in Cambridge Add MSS 1570
Gult and the Reconstruction of the Monarchy 18681910
Gult Grants to Churches of the Reign of Yohannes IV
Gebzenna Grants of Menilek II
Man Is Free Land Is Tributary
Order and Disorder
Gult Grants 15401632
Gult Lands Granted to Däbrä Berhan Sellasé Gondär by Iyasu I
Mentewwab How Beautiful She Is 172169
Gult Grants of Bäkaffa
Grants of Gult to Churches by Yetégé Mentewwab
Gult Grants to Individuals by Yetégé Mentewwab
Family and Property
Primary Documents in Chronological Order
Primary Documents Distinct from the Case of Gälawdéwos
The Era of the Princes
Lands of Bäata Gondär
Sources for the Land Grants of Täklä Haymanot 176977
Sources for the Land Grants of Sälomon 177779
Churches Benefiting from Land Grants in the Early
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Land and Society in the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia: From the Thirteenth ...
No preview available - 1999