Learn more about Rumelia
Rumeli (turkish: Rum: Roman; El: Land Rumeli: Lands of Rome)
(Greek: Ρούμελη, Bulgarian: Румелия, Rumeliya) is the area that was the Byzantine Empire — a name commonly used from the 15th century onwards — and denotes the part of the Balkanic peninsula subject to the Ottoman Empire. However, the word "Rumeli" literally translates as "the land of Romans", in reference to the Byzantine Empire, and during the 11th and 12th centuries it was widely used for Anatolia after the latter region was conquered from the Byzantines.
The name came to be commonly used, from the 15th century onwards, to denote the part of the Balkan Peninsula subject to the Ottoman Empire. More precisely it was the country bounded north by Bulgaria, west by Albania and south by the Morea, or in other words the ancient provinces, including Constantinople and Thessaloniki, of Thrace and Macedonia. Old French maps show both sides of Meriç river as a Romania. The name Rumelia was ultimately applied more especially to a province composed of central Albania and western Macedonia, having Monastir for its chief town.
Owing to administrative changes effected between 1870 and 1875, the name ceased to correspond to any political division. Eastern Rumelia was constituted an autonomous province of the Ottoman Empire by the Treaty of Berlin, 1878, but on September 6, 1885, after a bloodless revolution, it was united with Bulgaria.
Today the word "Rumeli" is sometimes used to indicate the part of Turkey which is in Europe (provinces of Edirne (Adrianople), Kırklareli, Tekirdağ and the western part of Istanbul Province (Constantinople)). However, "Rumeli" is almost always used in historical contexts, the modern Turkish name for the region being Trakya (Thrace). In Greece, the term Ρούμελη (Rumeli) is used since Ottoman times to refer to Central Greece, especially when juxtaposed with Μωριάς (Morias).
The first Beylerbey of Rumelia was Lala Shahin Pasha (also known as Lala Şâhin Paşa or S(h)ahin Pasha), the tutor (lala) of Murad I. He established the seat of his administration in Philippopolis in 1362.
In 1382 the capital of Rumelia was moved to Sofia.
- Shehabeddin Pasha (Sa'd ed-din Pasha) (1436)
- Sokollu Mehmet Paşa (Mehmed-paša Sokolović) (1551-1555)
- Jegen Pasha (17th century)
- Ali Pasha (1741-1822)
- Georgantzoglu Pasha (1905)