The social structure in Macedonia, as well as in the rest of Greece, was not uniform until the middle of the 19th century. From the archives that exist for certain towns (Serres, Veroia, Siatista, Ochrid), it appears that from the start of the Ottoman occupation, Macedonia was granted administrative privileges.
The notables were elected either by neighborhood or by guild, or in other ways; as a rule, however, the process favored the election of the most distinguished and wealthiest citizens. The notables, along with the clergy, had judicial authority, which they exercised through recourse to collections of Byzantine law or ecclesiastical ordinances.
A unique federation of villages with a popular base and broad authority was that of the Mademohoria in Halkidiki, where the members of the federation's council represented the 12 villages and the hundreds of smaller hamlets in the area. In the 18th century, the council of this federation also functioned as its highest intercommunity and guild authority.