By Thomas Philipp
Thomas Philipp's examine of Acre combines the main vast use up to now of neighborhood Arabic resources with advertisement documents in Europe to make clear a sector and gear middle many determine because the starting of contemporary Palestinian historical past. The 3rd greatest urban in eighteenth-century Syria—after Aleppo and Damascus—Acre used to be the capital of a politically and economically precise sector at the Mediterranean coast that integrated what's this day northern Israel and southern Lebanon. within the eighteenth century, Acre grew dramatically from a small fishing village to a fortified urban of a few 25,000 population. money plants (first cotton, then grain) made Acre the guts of alternate and political strength and associated it inextricably to the realm economic system. Acre used to be markedly diverse from different towns within the area: its city society consisted nearly solely of immigrants looking their fortune.
The upward thrust and fall of Acre within the eighteenth and 19th centuries, Thomas Philipp argues,...
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Extra info for Acre. The Rise and Fall of a Palestinian City, 1730-1831
As beasts of burden were always used, no investment in road maintenance was necessary, but there was also a positive reason to leave the road system in such an abysmal state, and this explains the enormous role fortifications played: the road system could not accommodate armies dragging siege equipment. 36 The Egyptian invasion radically changed the political and economic landscape, especially that of southwest Syria. In October 1831, 20,000 troops set out from Egypt overland via Gaza to Jaffa, where they were joined on November 8 by an Egyptian fleet carrying 6,000 marines.
Yet it was to become the center of the first region in the Arab provinces touched profoundly by new European demands for raw materials. During the eighteenth century cotton provided the economic base for the importance of Acre and the might of its rulers, while grain played that role in the first two decades of the nineteenth. Here the process of regional integration and political autonomy was fueled exclusively by the new opportunities for wealth that the linkage of the region to the European-dominated world economy offered.
Control over Jaffa seems to have reverted to Nablus, and indirectly to the governor of Damascus after the death of Ẓāhīr al-‘Umar and Abū ‘l-Dhahab in 1775. As late as 1792 Jaffa was a refuge for the French merchants from Acre—beyond the reach of Aḥmad Pasha al-Jazzār. When the French army under Napoleon, however, moved in 1799 from Egypt to Syria, al-Jazzār’s troops defended Jaffa in a bitter siege which ended with the execution of these troops after their surrender. Thereafter, the Ottoman government made repeated attempts to establish its direct control over the fortress of Jaffa, but from early 1807 on Jaffa remained firmly attached to Acre.