1 Abstract This study analyses the functioning of the “gold standard ” in the Ottoman Empire during the pre-1914 gold standard era, with specific emphasis on the institutions regulating commodity money and fiat money. It explores the extent to which the Ottoman monetary system was an outlier with reference to the experiences of other peripheral countries. One of the findings reveals considerably limited circulation of notes in the Ottoman Empire even after adherence to the gold standard in 1880. By highlighting the anomalies of the Ottoman case, this paper concludes that the transition from commodity money to fiat money did not take place at the same rate across peripheries during the pre-1914 gold standard era. These differences may be explained by the relative autonomy of the central banks of issue from governments, and in turn may have implied changing degrees of monetary sovereignty and fiscal capacity across the members of the golden periphery. Acknowledgements The previous versions of this paper were presented at the data collection task force meeting of the South-East European Monetary History Network in Athens in 2009, the Ottoman
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