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MAHKAMAH. Meaning a "place of judgment," the term mahkamah has come to refer to all forms of law court in the Arabic-speaking world. In traditional Islamic settings, emphasis was placed on the individual judge, for instance the gads or the amir, rather than on the institution. Often there was no specialized building which might be referred to as a court; judges heard cases in marketplaces, mosques, private dwellings, or the audience chambers of palaces. Sometimes the judge was assisted by a cons ...more

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