When Turks came to Anatolia, they started to establish waqfs (foundations) within the framework of Turkish–Islamic synthesis. Those waqfs undertook important tasks in the social environment for centuries. It is understood that these waqfs were founded upon solid legal infrastructure and due to their importance in Ottoman economy and social order, waqfs were subject to very strict audit and control procedures performed with due diligence. It can be concluded that because of solid legal infrastructure and audit and control policies, waqfs in Ottoman Empire had a long life cycle.
With Tanzimat Edict (1839), the organization dealing with the administration of accounting and auditing of state founded waqfs was titled Harem Dairesi. The administrators of this organization were known as Darus saade Agalari (Masters of Harem). These individuals established an accounting organization called hamereyn accountants for the auditing of both imperial waqfs and the ones founded by Ottoman dignitaries and wealthy individuals.
This paper examines the audit reports of a major waqf in Istanbul for the year 1230 Hegira (1814-1815 AC). The audit report was prepared and signed by Master of Harem, (Darus saade Agasi) in charge. The report shows the annual income-expenditures and prepared with the mardiban method. Also, it is observed that the Darus saade Agasi prepared two copies of reports and sent one of them to Sadrazam (prime minister).
It is observed that the annual auditing reports including related details are submitted to Sultan, which gives us an opinion that auditing had great importance in the administration of waqfs under Ottoman influence.
Keywords: Waqf in the Ottoman Empire,Anatolia, Administration of waqfs, foundations, auditing of waqfs.
Jel code: M41, M42.
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