Following the final partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (1795) the Ottoman Empire became one of the key destinations for Polish political émigrés. They fled to Istanbul hoping for Ottoman support in their efforts to regain independence. Not only did they promote an independent Polish state, but also were many of them involved in the modernization enterprise of the Ottoman state. During the Second Constitutional Period (1908-1918) Tadeusz Gasztowtt aka Seyfeddin Bey came to prominence as a supporter of the Committee of Union and Progress, journalist, diplomat and soldier. Meanwhile, in the aftermath of WWI he was one of the main organizers of the diplomatic rapprochement between independent Poland and the Ottoman Empire and later, the Republic of Turkey. Given Gasztowtt’s service to a double national cause this paper puts forward a more inclusive category of a Polish Ottoman or an Ottoman Pole to define the overlapping allegiances of this individual.
Derviş İbrahim Paşa was one of the most important military commanders of the 19th-century Ottoman Empire. He received international attention first for his role during the Russo-Ottoman war of 1877/78, where he commanded the garrison of Batum, and then as head of Sultan Abdülhamid’s 1881/82 mission to Egypt attempting to forestall the loss of the province. This contribution aims to serve as a starting point for a better understanding of his biography. We establish the basic chronology of Derviş Paşa’s career and review narratives regarding his personality and character. In the process, we establish the necessity of identifying and critically examining the use of clichés in contemporary European sources.