Rumelia

Rumelia

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Rumelia was an historical region comprising the territories of the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

. Formerly known as Turkey in Europe or Roumelia in English, Rumelia comes from the Turkish Rumeli, meaning "land of the Romans" (i.e., the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

). As such, it was originally used in Turkish to describe the lands of that empire in Anatolia
Anatolia
Anatolia is a geographic and historical term denoting the westernmost protrusion of Asia, comprising the majority of the Republic of Turkey...

; however, following the Islamization
Islamization
Islamization or Islamification has been used to describe the process of a society's conversion to the religion of Islam...

 of that region and the conquest of Constantinople
Fall of Constantinople
The Fall of Constantinople was the capture of the capital of the Byzantine Empire, which occurred after a siege by the Ottoman Empire, under the command of Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II, against the defending army commanded by Byzantine Emperor Constantine XI...

 by Mehmet II, it was applied to the southern Balkan regions of the Ottoman Empire, which remained primarily Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

.

Rumelia included the provinces of Constantinople
Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

, Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki , historically also known as Thessalonica, Salonika or Salonica, is the second-largest city in Greece and the capital of the region of Central Macedonia as well as the capital of the Decentralized Administration of Macedonia and Thrace...

, Thrace
Thrace
Thrace is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. As a geographical concept, Thrace designates a region bounded by the Balkan Mountains on the north, Rhodope Mountains and the Aegean Sea on the south, and by the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara on the east...

, Macedonia
Macedonia (region)
Macedonia is a geographical and historical region of the Balkan peninsula in southeastern Europe. Its boundaries have changed considerably over time, but nowadays the region is considered to include parts of five Balkan countries: Greece, the Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria, Albania, Serbia, as...

 and Moesia
Moesia
Moesia was an ancient region and later Roman province situated in the Balkans, along the south bank of the Danube River. It included territories of modern-day Southern Serbia , Northern Republic of Macedonia, Northern Bulgaria, Romanian Dobrudja, Southern Moldova, and Budjak .-History:In ancient...

, today's Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

 and Turkish Thrace, bounded to the north by the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

, west by Albania
Albania
Albania , officially known as the Republic of Albania , is a country in Southeastern Europe, in the Balkans region. It is bordered by Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, the Republic of Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south and southeast. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea...

 and south by the Morea
Morea
The Morea was the name of the Peloponnese peninsula in southern Greece during the Middle Ages and the early modern period. It also referred to a Byzantine province in the region, known as the Despotate of Morea.-Origins of the name:...

. The name Rumelia was ultimately applied to a province composed of central Albania and north-western Macedonia, with Bitola
Bitola
Bitola is a city in the southwestern part of the Republic of Macedonia. The city is an administrative, cultural, industrial, commercial, and educational centre. It is located in the southern part of the Pelagonia valley, surrounded by the Baba and Nidže mountains, 14 km north of the...

 for its chief town.

Owing to administrative changes effected between 1870 and 1875, the name ceased to correspond to any political division. Eastern Rumelia
Eastern Rumelia
Eastern Rumelia or Eastern Roumelia was an administratively autonomous province in the Ottoman Empire and Principality of Bulgaria from 1878 to 1908. It was under full Bulgarian control from 1885 on, when it willingly united with the tributary Principality of Bulgaria after a bloodless revolution...

 was constituted as an autonomous province of the Ottoman Empire by the Treaty of Berlin, 1878
Treaty of Berlin, 1878
The Treaty of Berlin was the final act of the Congress of Berlin , by which the United Kingdom, Austria-Hungary, France, Germany, Italy, Russia and the Ottoman Empire under Sultan Abdul Hamid II revised the Treaty of San Stefano signed on March 3 of the same year...

, but on September 6, 1885, after a bloodless revolution, it was united with Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

. The Kosovo Vilayet was created at 1877.

Today, in Turkey, the word Trakya has mostly replaced Rumelia when referring to the part of Turkey which is in Europe (provinces of Edirne
Edirne Province
Edirne Province is the westernmost province of Turkey, located in Eastern Thrace along the Greek and Bulgarian border. The city's wealth, population and importance increased after it was declared as the capital city of the Ottoman Empire...

, Kırklareli
Kirklareli Province
Kırklareli Province is a province in northwestern Turkey on the west coast of the Black Sea. The province neighbours Bulgaria to the north along a 180 kilometers long border. It borders the province of Edirne to the west and the province of Tekirdağ to the south and province of Istanbul to the...

, Tekirdağ
Tekirdag Province
The Tekirdağ Province is in Trakya , the northwestern part of Turkey. The capital city is Tekirdağ. It is famous for its meatball called "Tekirdağ köfte" and the Turkish alcoholic drink called Tekirdağ rakısı.-Districts:...

, the northern part of Çanakkale Province
Çanakkale Province
Çanakkale Province is a province of Turkey, located in the northwestern part of the country. It takes its name from the town of Çanakkale.Like Istanbul, Çanakkale province has a European and an Asian part. The European part is formed by the Gallipoli peninsula, while the Asian part is largely...

 and the western part of İstanbul Province
Istanbul Province
Istanbul Province is a province located in north-west Turkey. It has an area of 5,196 km² and a population of 13,255,685. The population was 10,018,735 in 2000. It is surrounded by the provinces of Tekirdağ to the west, Kocaeli to the east, the Black Sea to the northern part and the Sea of...

), though Rumelia remains in use in historical contexts, and the word is used in the context of the culture of current Turkish populations of the Balkans and descendants of Turkish immigrants from the Balkans. This region in Turkey is also referred to as Eastern Thrace or Turkish Thrace
Thrace
Thrace is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. As a geographical concept, Thrace designates a region bounded by the Balkan Mountains on the north, Rhodope Mountains and the Aegean Sea on the south, and by the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara on the east...

. In Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

, the term Ρούμελη (Rumeli) has been used since Ottoman times to refer to Central Greece
Central Greece
Continental Greece or Central Greece , colloquially known as Roúmeli , is a geographical region of Greece. Its territory is divided into the administrative regions of Central Greece, Attica, and part of West Greece...

, especially when juxtaposed with Morea. The word "Rumeli" is also used in some cases (mostly by Istanbul denizens) to refer exclusively to the part of Istanbul Province
Istanbul Province
Istanbul Province is a province located in north-west Turkey. It has an area of 5,196 km² and a population of 13,255,685. The population was 10,018,735 in 2000. It is surrounded by the provinces of Tekirdağ to the west, Kocaeli to the east, the Black Sea to the northern part and the Sea of...

 that is situated west of the Bosphorus.

See also

  • Upper Thracian Plain
    Upper Thracian Plain
    The Upper Thracian Plain constitutes the northern part of the historical region of Thrace. It is located in southern Bulgaria, between the Sredna Gora mountains to the north and west; the Rhodopes, Sakar and Strandzha to the south; and the Black Sea to the east. A fertile agricultural region, the...

     in Bulgaria
  • Western Thrace
    Western Thrace
    Western Thrace or simply Thrace is a geographic and historical region of Greece, located between the Nestos and Evros rivers in the northeast of the country. Together with the regions of Macedonia and Epirus, it is often referred to informally as northern Greece...

     in Greece
  • European Turkey
    European Turkey
    European Turkey may refer to:*Eastern Thrace, the European portion of Turkey*Rumelia, the historical Ottoman territories in Europe*the suggested Accession of Turkey to the European Union...

  • Ottoman Greece
    Ottoman Greece
    Most of Greece gradually became part of the Ottoman Empire from the 15th century until its declaration of independence in 1821, a historical period also known as Tourkokratia ....

  • Rumelia Eyalet
    Rumelia Eyalet
    The eyalet of Rumeli or eyalet of Rumelia , also known as Rumeli Beylerbeyliği was a eyalet of the Ottoman Empire. The capital was in Adrianople , Monastir and Sofia. Its reported area in the 19th century was .It was formed during the reign of Murad I as the first Beylerbeylik of the Ottoman Empire...