Porte (n.)

"Ottoman court at Constantinople," c. 1600, from French, in full, la Sublime Porte, literally "the high gate," translation of Arabic al-Bab al-'Ali, "lofty gate," official name of the central office of the Ottoman government (compare Vatican for "the Papacy," White House for "the United States"). Compare also Mikado. Supposedly a reference to the ancient custom of holding royal audience in the doorway of a king's palace or tent.

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