Abdulmejid II

Abdulmejid II (Ottoman Turkish: عبد المجید الثانی‎, Abd al-Madjeed al-ThâniTurkish: Halife İkinci Abdülmecit Efendi, 29 May 1868 – 23 August 1944) was the last Caliph of Ottoman Dynasty, nominally the 37th Head of the Ottoman Imperial House from 1922 to 1924.

Abdulmejid II
Ottoman Caliph
Amir al-Mu'minin
Head of the House of Osman
Abdulmecid efendi
29th Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate
Tenure19 November 1922 – 3 March 1924
PredecessorMehmed VI
SuccessorOttoman Caliphate abolished
Head of the House of Osman
(in exile)
Pretence16 May 1926 – 23 August 1944
PredecessorMehmed VI
SuccessorAhmed Nihad
Born29/30 May 1868[1][2]
Beşiktaş, Istanbul, Ottoman Empire
Died23 August 1944 (aged 76)
Paris, France
ConsortsMihrimah Hanım
Şehsuvar Hanım
Hayrünissa Hanım
Mehisti Hanım
IssueŞehzade Ömer Faruk
Dürrüşehvar Sultan
Full name
Abdul Mecid bin Abdul Aziz
MotherHayranidil Kadın
ReligionSunni Islam


On 30 May 1868,[1][2] he was born at Dolmabahçe Palace or at Beşiktaş Palace, Beşiktaş, Istanbul, to then Sultan Abdülaziz and his wife Hayranidil Kadın. He was educated privately.

According to custom, Abdulmejid was confined to the palace until he was 40. On 4 July 1918, his first cousin Mehmed VI became Sultan and Abdulmejid was named Crown Prince.[1] Following the deposition of his cousin on 1 November 1922, the Sultanate was abolished. But on 19 November 1922, the Crown Prince was elected Caliph by the Turkish National Assembly at Ankara.[1] He established himself in Constantinople[3][4] on 24 November 1922.

On 3 March 1924, six months after the foundation of the Turkish Republic, the Ottoman Caliphate was abolished and the Ottoman dynasty was deposed and expelled from Turkey.[5][6]


Şehsuvar, wife of Abdulmecid
Abdulmejid's painting of his wife.

Abdulmejid was given the title of General in the Ottoman Army, but did not in fact have strong military inclinations, and his more significant role was as Chairman of the Ottoman Artists' Society.

He is considered as one of the most important painters of late period Ottoman art.

His paintings of the Harem, showing a modern musical gathering, and of his wife, Şehsuvar Hanım, reading Goethe's Faust.[7] were displayed at an exhibition of Ottoman paintings in Vienna in 1918. His personal self-portrait can be seen at Istanbul Modern.

Abdulmejid was an avid collector of butterflies, an activity that he occupied himself with during the last 20 years of his life. His favourite magazine was Revue des deux Mondes.[7]


On 23 August 1944, Abdulmejid II died at his house in the Boulevard Suchet, Paris. His death coincided with the Liberation of Paris from the German occupation. He was buried in Medina, Saudi Arabia, by the order of King Saud of Saudi Arabia.


Photo of Abdulmejid II during his exile
Caliphate standard of Abdulmejid II (1922–1924)
Standard of Abdulmejid II
Caliph Abdulmecid II of the Ottoman Empire
Princess Dürrüşehvar Sultan, Princess of Berar; Caliph Abdulmejid II of the Ottoman Empire, and Nawab Azam Jah, Prince of Berar

Abdulmejid had four consorts:

  • Şehzade Ömer Faruk (Constantinople, Ortaköy, Ortaköy Palace, 27/29 February 1898 – 28 March 1969/1971) - with Şehsuvar, married firstly at Yıldız Palace on 29 April 1920 to his cousin Rukiye Sabiha Sultan (Constantinople, Ortaköy, Ortaköy Palace, 19 March/1 April 1894 – Istanbul, 26 August 1971), and had three daughters, and married secondly in İskenderiye on 31 July 1948 to his cousin Mihriban Mihrishah Sultan (Constantinople, Beşiktaş, Beşiktaş Palace, 1 June 1916 – Istanbul, 25 January 1987), without issue:
    • Fatma Neslişah Osmanoğlu Sultan (Constantinople, Nişantaşı, Nişantaşı Palace, 4 February 1921 – 1 April 2012), married in Heliopolis Palace, Cairo, on 26 September 1940 to her cousin Damat Prince Muhammad Abdel Moneim (Alexandria, Montaza Palace, 20 February 1899 – Istanbul, 1/2 December 1979, buried in Cairo), heir apparent to the throne of Egypt from 1899 to 1914, created HH in 1922, created HRH in 1952, Regent of Egypt from 1952 to 1953, and had issue
    • Zehra Hanzade Sultan (Constantinople, Dolmabahçe Palace, 12 September 1923 – Paris, 19 March 1998, buried on 26 March 1998), married in Cairo in September 1940 to Damat Prince Muhammad Ali Ibrahim (Cairo, 29 April 1900 – Paris, 2 July 1977), and had issue:
      • Nabila Sabiha Fazila Ibrahim Hanımsultan (b. Neuilly-sur-Seine, 8 August 1941), was the fiance of King Faisal II of Iraq until 1958 when the king was killed. Few years later she married Kheri Oglu, together they had two sons Ali and Saleem
      • Nabil Sultanzade Ahmad Rifat Ibrahim (b. 31 August 1942), married on 26 June 1969 to Emine Ushakidil, without issue
    • Necla Heybetullah Sultan (Nice, 15 May 1926 – 16 October 2006), married in Cairo in February 1943 to Nabil Amr Ibrahim (Cairo, 18 April 1903 – 1977), and had issue:
      • Nabil Sultanzade Osman Rifat Ibrahim (b. 20 May 1951), unmarried and without issue


  1. ^ a b c d Hoiberg, Dale H., ed. (2010). "Abdümecid II". Encyclopædia Britannica. I: A-ak Bayes (15th ed.). Chicago, Illinois: Encyclopædia Britannica Inc. p. 23. ISBN 978-1-59339-837-8.
  2. ^ a b There are sources that give the 29th as the day of his birth.
  3. ^ The Encyclopædia Britannica, Vol.7, Edited by Hugh Chisholm, (1911), 3; Constantinople, the capital of the Ottoman Empire...
  4. ^ Inc, Encyclopaedia Britannica (2008-05-01). Britannica Concise Encyclopedia. Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. p. 966. ISBN 9781593394929.
  5. ^ Finkel, Caroline (2007). "Osman's Dream: The History of the Ottoman Empire". Basic Books. p. 546. ISBN 9780465008506.
  6. ^ Özoğlu, Hakan (2011). From Caliphate to Secular State: Power Struggle in the Early Turkish Republic. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9780313379567.
  7. ^ a b "The Ottoman caliphate: Worldly, pluralist, hedonistic—and Muslim, too". The Economist. 19 December 2015. Retrieved 26 December 2015.
  8. ^ Haskan, Mehmet Nermi (2001). Yüzyıllar boyunca Üsküdar - Volume 1. Üsküdar Belediyesi. p. 298. ISBN 978-9-759-76062-5.
  9. ^ Bardakçı, Murat (2017). Neslishah: The Last Ottoman Princess. Oxford University Press. p. 110. ISBN 978-9-774-16837-6.

See also

External links

Abdulmejid II
Born: 29 May 1868 Died: 23 August 1944
Sunni Islam titles
Preceded by
Mehmed VI
Last Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate
Ottoman Caliph

19 November 1922 – 3 March 1924
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Mehmed VI
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
19 November 1922 – 23 August 1944
Reason for succession failure:
Empire abolished in 1922
Succeeded by
Ahmed Nihad
Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate
3 March 1924 – 23 August 1944
Reason for succession failure:
Caliphate abolished on March 3, 1924
Caliphate abolished in 1924
(The religious position and the official representation of the caliph's powers was transferred to Diyanet İşleri Başkanlığı)
Behiye Sultan

Behiye Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: بهیه سلطان‎; 20 September 1881 – 5 March 1948) was the eldest daughter of Şehzade Mehmed Selaheddin (1861–1915), who was the son of Ottoman Sultan Murad V (reigned 1876). Her mother was Naziknaz Hanım.

Bezmiâlem Sultan

Bezmiâlem Sultan (fully Devletlu İsmetlu Bezmiâlem Valide Sultan Aliyyetü'ş-Şân Hazretleri; 1807 – 2 May 1853) (Bezm-î Âlem or Bazim-î Âlam, meaning "feast of the world") was the second wife of Ottoman Sultan Mahmut II, and the mother of Sultan Abdülmecit I of the Ottoman Empire.

Dilpesend Kadın

Dilpesend Kadın (Ottoman Turkish: دل پسند قادین‎; 16 January 1861 – 17 June 1901) was the fifth wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of the Ottoman Empire.

Emsalinur Kadın

Emsalinur Kadın (Ottoman Turkish: امثال نور قادجن‎; 2 January 1866 – 20 November 1952) was the seventh wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of the Ottoman Empire.

Gevheri Sultan

Gevheri Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: کوهری سلطان‎; 30 November 1904 – 10 December 1980) was an Ottoman princess, musician, and composer.

Hayranidil Kadın

Hayranidil Kadın (Ottoman Turkish: خیراندل قادین‎; 21 November 1846 – 26 November 1895), meaning 'The excellent heart', was the second wife of Sultan Abdülaziz of the Ottoman Empire.

Mehisti Hanım

Mehisti Hanım (Ottoman Turkish: مهستی خانم‎; 27 January 1892 – c. 1964) was the fourth wife of Abdulmejid II, the last Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate.

Mehmed VI

Mehmed VI Vahideddin (Ottoman Turkish: محمد السادس‎ Meḥmed-i sâdis, وحيد الدين‎ Vahideddin, Turkish: Vahideddin or Altıncı Mehmet), who is also known as Şahbaba (meaning "Emperor-father") among his relatives, (14 January 1861 – 16 May 1926) was the 36th and last Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, reigning from July 4, 1918 until November 1, 1922 when the Ottoman Empire dissolved after World War 1 and became the nation of the Republic of Turkey on October 29, 1923. The brother of Mehmed V, he became heir to the throne after the 1916 suicide of Abdülaziz's son Şehzade Yusuf Izzeddin as the eldest male member of the House of Osman. He acceded to the throne after the death of Mehmed V. He was girded with the Sword of Osman on 4 July 1918, as the thirty-sixth padishah. His father was Sultan Abdulmejid I and mother was Gülüstü Hanım (1830 – 1865), an ethnic Abkhazian, daughter of Prince Tahir Bey Çaçba and his wife Afişe Lakerba, originally named Fatma Çaçba. Mehmed was removed from the throne when the Ottoman sultanate was abolished in 1922.

Mezidimestan Kadın

Mezidimestan Kadın (3 March 1869 – 21 January 1909) was the sixth wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of the Ottoman Empire.

Mihrişah Sultan

Mihrişah Sultan (also spelled Mihr-i Şāh; c. 1745 – 16 October 1805), known as "the Georgian Beauty", was the consort to Ottoman Sultan Mustafa III, and the mother of Sultan Selim III and his de facto co-regent (as the Valide Sultan) for sixteen years from 1789 until 1805.

Mihrişah Sultan (daughter of Şehzade Izzeddin)

Mihrişah Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: مهرشاہ سلطان‎; 1 June 1916 – 25 January 1987) was an Ottoman princess, the daughter of heir to the throne Şehzade Yusuf Izzeddin, son of Sultan Abdülaziz.

Münire Sultan (daughter of Şehzade Kemaleddin)

Münire Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: منیره سلطان‎; 17 May 1880 – 7 October 1939) was an Ottoman princess, the daughter of Şehzade Ahmed Kemaleddin, the son of Sultan Abdulmejid I.

Naciye Sultan

Naciye Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: ناجیه سلطان‎; 25 November 1896 – 5 December 1957) was an Ottoman princess, the daughter of Şehzade Seim Süleyman, son of Sultan Abdulmejid I.

Nakşidil Sultan

Nakşidil Sultan (fully Devletli, İsmetli, Nakşidil Valide Sultan Aliyyetü'ş-şân Hazretleri; c. 1767 – 22 August 1817; meaning "Embroidered on the Heart") was the consort of Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid I and Valide Sultan to her son Mahmud II.

Neslişah Sultan

Neslişah Sultan (Osmanoğlu) (Ottoman Turkish: نسل شاہ سلطان‎; 4 February 1921 – 2 April 2012) was a granddaughter of the last Ottoman Caliph Abdulmejid II and his first wife, Şehsuvar Hanım and granddaughter of the last Ottoman Sultan Mehmed VI and his first wife, Nazikeda Kadın. She was the daughter of Şehzade Omer Faruk (1898–1969/1971) and his first wife and cousin Sabiha Sultan (1894–1971).

She grew up in Nice, France, after being exiled since she was 3 years old, when the Imperial House of Osman left Istanbul in accordance with Republican regulations and laws.

Nurefsun Kadın

Nurefsun Kadın (Ottoman Turkish: نورافسون قادین‎; c. 1851 – c. 1915), was the third wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of the Ottoman Empire.

Sazkar Hanım

Sazkar Hanım (Ottoman Turkish: سازکار خانم‎; 8 May 1873 – c. 1945) was the ninth wife of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of the Ottoman Empire.

Şevkefza Kadın

Şevkefza Kadın (died 17 September 1889; meaning "who cheers up"; Ottoman Turkish: شوق افزا قادین‎) was the fourth wife of Sultan Abdulmejid I of the Ottoman Empire. She held the position of Valide Sultan from 30 May 1876 to 31 August 1876, when her son Şehzade Murad ascended the throne as Murad V.

Şükriye Sultan

Şükriye Sultan (Ottoman Turkish: شکریه سلطان‎; 24 February 1906 – 1 April 1972) was an Ottoman princess, the daughter of heir to the throne Şehzade Yusuf Izzeddin, son of Sultan Abdülaziz.

Ottoman princes
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5th generation
6th generation
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