The regency of Algiers[a] (in Arabic: Al Jazâ'ir),[b] was a vassal state of the Ottoman Empire in North Africa lasting from 1515 to 1830, when it was conquered by the French. Situated between the regency of Tunis in the east and the Sharifian Empire (from 1553) in the west (and the Spanish and Portuguese possessions of North Africa), the Regency originally extended its borders from La Calle to the east to Trara in the west and from Algiers to Biskra, and after spread to the present eastern and western borders of Algeria.
The Regency was governed by beylerbeys, pashas, aghas and deys, and was composed of various beyliks (provinces) under the authority of beys (vassals): Constantine in the east, Medea in the Titteri and Mazouna, then Mascara and then Oran in the west. Each beylik was divided into various outan (counties) with at their head the caïds directly under the bey. To administer the interior of the country, the administration relied on the tribes said makhzen. These tribes were responsible for securing order and collecting taxes on the tributary regions of the country. It was through this system that, for three centuries, the State of Algiers extended its authority over the north of Algeria. However, society was still divided into tribes and dominated by maraboutics brotherhoods or local djouads (nobles). Several regions of the country thus only lightly recognised the authority of Algiers. Throughout its history, they formed numerous revolts, confederations, tribal fiefs or sultanates that fought with the regency for control. Before 1830, out of the 516 political units, a total of 200 principalities or tribes were considered independent because they controlled over 60% of the territory in Algeria and refused to pay taxes to Algiers.
Map of The Regency of Algiers in 1609.
|Common languages||Arabic (official, government, religious, literature), Berber, Ottoman Turkish (elite, diplomatic)|
|Religion||Islam (Maliki and Hanafi), Judaism|
|Government||Beylerbeylik (1518-1590) then Eyalet (1590-1830) of the Ottoman Empire|
|Today part of||Algeria|
From 1496, the Spanish conquered numerous possessions on the North African coast, which had been captured since 1496: Melilla (1496), Mers El Kébir (1505), Oran (1509), Bougie (1510), Tripoli (1510), Algiers, Shershell, Dellys, and Tenes.
Around the same time, the Ottoman privateer brothers Oruç and Hayreddin—both known to Europeans as Barbarossa, or "Red Beard"—were operating successfully off Tunisia under the Hafsids. In 1516, Oruç moved his base of operations to Algiers and asked for the protection of the Ottoman Empire in 1517, but was killed in 1518 during his invasion of the Kingdom of Tlemcen. Hayreddin succeeded him as military commander of Algiers.
Oruç, Hayreddin Barbarossa's brother, captured Algiers in 1516, apart from the Spanish Peñón of Algiers. Following the death of Oruç in 1518 at the hand of the Spanish in the Fall of Tlemcen, Barbarossa requested the assistance of the Ottoman Empire, in exchange for acknowledging Ottoman authority in his dominions. Before Ottoman help could arrive, the Spanish retook the city of Algiers in 1519. Barbarossa recaptured the city definitively in 1525, and in 1529 the Spanish Peñon in the capture of Algiers.
Hayreddin Barbarossa established the military basis of the regency. The Ottomans provided a supporting garrison of 2,000 Turkish troops with artillery. He left Hasan Agha in command as his deputy when he had to leave for Constantinople in 1533.
The son of Barbarossa, Hasan Pashan was in 1544, when his father retired, the first governor of the Regency to be directly appointed by the Ottoman Empire. He took the title of beylerbey. Algiers became a base in the war against Spain, and also in the Ottoman conflicts with Morocco.
Beylerbeys continued to be nominated for unlimited tenures until 1587. After Spain had sent an embassy to Constantinople in 1578 to negotiate a truce, leading to a formal peace in August 1580, the Regency of Algiers was a formal Ottoman territory, rather than just a military base in the war against Spain. At this time, the Ottoman Empire set up a regular Ottoman administration in Algiers and its dependencies, headed by Pashas, with 3 year terms to help considate Ottoman power in the Maghreb.
Despite the end of formal hostilities with Spain in 1580, attacks on Christian and especially Catholic shipping, with slavery for the captured, became prevalent in Algiers, and were actually the main industry and source of revenues of the Regency.
In the early 17th century, Algiers also became, along with other North African ports such as Tunis, one of the bases for Anglo-Turkish piracy. There were as many as 8,000 renegades in the city in 1634. (Renegades were former Christians, sometimes fleeing the law, who voluntarily moved to Muslim territory and converted to Islam.) Hayreddin Barbarossa is credited with tearing down the Peñón of Algiers and using the stone to build the inner harbor.
A contemporary letter states:
"The infinity of goods, merchandise jewels and treasure taken by our English pirates daily from Christians and carried to Allarach [ Larache, in Morocco], Algire and Tunis to the great enriching of Mores and Turks and impoverishing of Christians"— Contemporary letter sent from Portugal to England.
Privateer and slavery of Christians originating from Algiers were a major problem throughout the centuries, leading to regular punitive expeditions by European powers. Spain (1567, 1775, 1783), Denmark (1770), France (1661, 1665, 1682, 1683, 1688), England (1622, 1655, 1672), all led naval bombardments against Algiers. Abraham Duquesne fought the Barbary pirates in 1681 and bombarded Algiers between 1682 and 1683, to help Christian captives.
In the mid-1700s Dano-Norwegian trade in the Mediterranean expanded. In order to protect the lucrative business against piracy, Denmark–Norway had secured a peace deal with the states of Barbary Coast. It involved paying an annual tribute to the individual rulers and additionally to the States.
In 1766, Algiers had a new ruler, dey Baba Mohammed ben-Osman. He demanded that the annual payment made by Denmark-Norway should be increased, and he should receive new gifts. Denmark–Norway refused the demands. Shortly after, Algerian pirates hijacked three Dano-Norwegian ships and allowed the crew to be sold as slaves.
They threatened to bomb the Algerian capital if the Algerians did not agree to a new peace deal on Danish terms. Algiers was not intimidated by the fleet, the fleet was of 2 frigates, 2 bomb galiot and 4 ship of the line.
During the early 19th century, the Regency of Algiers again resorted to widespread piracy against shipping from Europe and the young United States of America, mainly due to internal fiscal difficulties. This in turn led to the First Barbary War and Second Barbary Wars, which culminated in August 1816 when Lord Exmouth executed a naval Bombardment of Algiers. The Barbary Wars resulted on a major victory for American Navy.
During the Napoleonic Wars, the Regency of Algiers had greatly benefited from trade in the Mediterranean, and of the massive imports of food by France, largely bought on credit by France. In 1827, Hussein Dey, Algeria's Ottoman ruler, demanded that the French pay a 31-year-old debt, contracted in 1799 by purchasing supplies to feed the soldiers of the Napoleonic Campaign in Egypt.
The French consul Pierre Deval refused to give answers satisfactory to the dey, and in an outburst of anger, Hussein Dey touched the consul with his fan. Charles X used this as an excuse to break diplomatic relations. The Regency of Algiers would end with the French invasion of Algiers in 1830, followed by subsequent French rule for the next 132 years.
After its conquest by Turks, Algeria became a province of the Ottoman Empire. The Regency was successively governed by Beylerbeys (1518–70), Pachas (1570–1659), Aghas (1659–71), then Deys (1671–1830), on behalf of the Ottoman Sultan.
Until 1671, Beylerbeys, Pachas and Aghas were appointed by the Ottoman sultan and were subjucted to him. After a coup in 1671, the Regency acquired a large degree of autonomy and became a military republic, ruled in the name of the Ottoman sultan by Deys, officers chosen either by the Ottoman militia or the Captains. From 1718 onwards, Deys were elected by the Divan, an assembly aimed to represent the interests of both Captains and Janissaries.
As of 1808, the population of the Regency of Algiers numbered around 3 million people, of whom 10,000 were 'Turks' (including people from Kurdish, Greek and Albanian ancestry) and 5,000 Kouloughlis (from the Turkish kul oğlu, "son of slaves (Janissaries)", i.e. creole of Turks and local women). By 1830, more than 17,000 Jews were living in the Regency.
Abun-Nasr 151was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
When the French turned their eyes to the kingdom of Algiers in 1830, the region had been under Ottoman rule since 1516. The Regency of Algiers was a province of the Ottoman empire under the authority of the dey of Algiers, who had acquired a large degree of autonomy from the sultan and who was chosen by Janissaries, the Ottoman militia of Algiers.
[In 1671] Ottoman Algeria became a military republic, ruled in the name of the Ottoman sultan by officers chosen by and in the interest of the Ujaq.
The Action of 28 November 1751 was a naval engagement of the Spanish-Algerian conflict, fought off Cape St Vincent between a squadron of two Spanish ships of the line under Captain Pedro Fitz-James Stuart and an Algerian squadron of equal strength. Captain Pedro Fitz-James Stuart's ships pursued one of the Algerian privateers and managed to force it to surrender it after a fierce exchange of fire. The ship, badly damaged, had to be scuttled, but its surviving crew and 50 Christian slaves were rescued and taken aboard Stuart's flagship.Action of 3 May 1657
The Action of 3 May 1657 was a battle that took place on 3 May 1657 and was a victory for the Republic of Venice over the Ottoman fleet of Algiers. Venetian casualties were 117 killed and 346 wounded. Few details are known.Baba Mohammed ben-Osman
Baba Mohammed ben-Osman or Muhammad V ben Othman was Dey of Ottoman Algeria from 1766 to 1791. Under his rule he declared war against Denmark-Norway because he demanded that an annual payment to stave off piracy by Denmark-Norway should be increased, and he should receive new gifts. Denmark-Norway refused the demands, beginning the Danish-Algerian War.Battle of Cape Kaliakra
The Battle of Cape Kaliakra was the last naval battle of the Russo-Turkish War (1787–1792). It took place on 11 August 1791 off the coast of Cape Kaliakra, Bulgaria, in the Black Sea. Neither side lost a ship, but the Ottomans retreated to Istanbul afterward.
The Russian fleet under Admiral Fyodor Ushakov, of 15 battleships and two frigates (990 guns), and several small craft sailed from Sevastopol on 8 August, and at midday on 11 August encountered the Ottoman–Algerian fleet under Hussein Pasha of 18 battleships and 17 frigates (1,500–1,600 guns) and some smaller craft at anchor just south of Cape Kaliakra. Ushakov sailed, in three columns, from the northeast, between the Ottomans and the cape, despite the presence on the cape of several guns.
Admiral Said Ali, the commander of the Algerian ships, weighed anchor and sailed east, followed by Hussein Pasha with the 18 battleships. The Russians then turned around south to a parallel east-south-east course and formed up mostly into one line, with Ushakov in third position and one ship out of line on the off-battle side. Said Ali, leading the line, turned north to try to double the Russian van, but Ushakov sailed out of the line and attacked him, as the rest of the Russian fleet approached. This was at 16:45 (4:45 p.m.). Gradually the Turks turned to the south and when darkness put an end to fighting at 20:30 (8:30 p.m.) they were in full retreat to Istanbul. Russian casualties were 17 killed and 28 wounded, and the frigate Alexander Nevsky was damaged. Ottoman casualty figures are unknown, but their ships were heavily damaged aloft.Battle of Staouéli
Battle of Staoueli (18 June 1830 – 19 June 1830), was a battle between the Kingdom of France and the Regency of Algiers in western Algiers while France was trying to take control over the capital.Battle off Cape Palos
The Battle off Cape Palos was the last battle of the Second Barbary War. The battle began when an American squadron under Stephen Decatur attacked and captured an Algerine brig.Bombardment of Algiers (1683)
The bombardment of Algiers in 1683 was a French naval operation against the Regency of Algiers during the Franco-Algerian War of 1681-88. It led to the rescue of more than 100 French prisoners, in some cases after decades of captivity, but the great majority of Christian slaves in Algiers were not liberated.Bombardment of Algiers (1783)
The Bombardment of Algiers in August 1783 was a failed attempt by Spain to put an end to Algerine privateering against Spanish shipping. A Spanish fleet of 70, sailing under Rear admiral Antonio Barceló, bombarded the city eight times between August 4–8 but inflicted only minor damages to the Algerine military. Both Spaniards and Algerines fought poorly, but Barceló, blaming unfavorable weather conditions, gave the order to withdraw. His expedition was judged a failure at the Spanish court, being described as a "festival of fireworks too costly and long for how little it entertained the Moors and how it was used by whomever paid for it".Bombardment of Algiers (1784)
The 2nd Bombardment of Algiers took place between 12 and 21 July 1784. A joint Spanish-Neapolitan-Maltese-Portuguese fleet commanded by the experienced Spanish Admiral Antonio Barceló bombarded the city, which was the main base of the Barbary corsairs, with the aim of forcing them to interrupt their activities. Massive damage and casualties were inflicted to the Algerians, while the loss aboard the allied fleet was low. The Dey of Algiers refused to start negotiations immediately but the fear of a third planned expedition under José de Mazarredo convinced him to negotiate a peace with the Spanish by which he was forced to cease large-scale piracy, signalling the effective end of the Barbary privateering until the outbreak of the Napoleonic Wars.Bombardment of Algiers (1816)
The Bombardment of Algiers (27 August 1816) was an attempt by Britain and the Netherlands to end the slavery practices of Omar Agha, the Dey of Algiers. An Anglo-Dutch fleet under the command of Admiral Lord Exmouth bombarded ships and the harbour defences of Algiers.
There was a continuing campaign by various European navies and the American navy to suppress the piracy against Europeans by the North African Barbary states. The specific aim of this expedition, however, was to free Christian slaves and to stop the practice of enslaving Europeans. To this end, it was partially successful, as the Dey of Algiers freed around 3,000 slaves following the bombardment and signed a treaty against the slavery of Europeans. However, this practice did not end completely until the French conquest of Algeria.Dey
Dey (Arabic: داي, from Turkish dayı), likely a local mispronunciation of the common Ottoman honorific title, bey, "lord", was the title given to the rulers of the Regency of Algiers (Algeria), Tripoli, and Tunis under the Ottoman Empire from 1671 onwards. Twenty-nine deys held office from the establishment of the deylicate in Algeria until the French conquest in 1830.The dey was chosen by local civilian, military, and religious leaders to govern for life and ruled with a high degree of autonomy from the Ottoman sultan. The main sources of his revenues were taxes on the agricultural population, religious tributes, and protection payments rendered by Corsairs, regarded as pirates who preyed on Mediterranean shipping. In the European part of the Ottoman Empire, in particular during its decline, leaders of the outlawed janissary and yamak troops sometimes acquired title of Dahi or Dahia, which is derived from Dey.The dey was assisted in governing made up of the Chiefs of the Army and Navy, the Director of Shipping, the Treasurer-General and the Collector of Tributes.
The realm of the dey of Alger (Algiers) was divided into three provinces (Constantine, Titteri and Mascara), each of which was administered by a bey (باي) whom he appointed.The rule of the deys of Alger came to an end on 5 July 1830, when Hussein Dey (1765–1838) surrendered to invading French forces.The last Dey of Tripoli was killed by Ahmed Karamanli, who established the eponymous Karamanli dynasty in 1711.Invasion of Algiers (1775)
The Invasion of Algiers was a massive amphibious attempt in July 1775 by the Spanish to seize the city of Algiers. King Charles III ordered an invasion of Algiers led by Alexander O'Reilly, who commanded a combined military and naval expedition of nearly fifty ships and more than twenty thousand troops. The assault was a spectacular failure and the campaign proved a humiliating blow to the Spanish military revival.Invasion of Algiers in 1830
The Invasion of Algiers in 1830 was a large-scale military operation by which the Kingdom of France, ruled by Charles X, invaded and conquered the Ottoman Regency of Algiers. Algiers had been a province of the Ottoman Empire since the Capture of Algiers in 1529 by Hayreddin Barbarossa.
A diplomatic incident in 1827, the so-called Fan Affair (Fly Whisk Incident) served as a pretext to initiate a blockade against the port of Algiers. After three years of standstill and a more severe incident in which a French ship carrying an ambassador to the dey with a proposal for negotiations was bombarded, the French determined that more forceful action was required. Charles X was also in need of diverting attention from turbulent French domestic affairs that culminated with his deposition during the later stages of the invasion in the July Revolution.
The invasion of Algiers began on 5 July 1830 with a naval bombardment by a fleet under Admiral Duperré, and a landing by troops under Louis Auguste Victor de Ghaisne, comte de Bourmont. The French quickly defeated the troops of Hussein Dey, the Ottoman ruler, but native resistance was widespread. This resulted in a protracted military campaign, lasting more than 45 years, to root out popular opposition to the colonisation. The so-called "pacification" was marked by resistance of figures such as Ahmed Bey, Abd El-Kader and Lalla Fatma N'Soumer.
The invasion marked the end of several centuries of Ottoman rule in Algeria and the beginning of French Algeria. In 1848, the territories conquered around Algiers were organised into three départements, defining the territories of modern Algeria.Kingdom of Kuku
The Kingdom of Kuku (Kingdom of Koukou) was a medieval Berber kingdom that ruled over much of greater Kabylia. It was established around 1515. The polity's realm stretched from the Atlas Mountains to the southern plains of Algiers. Its capital was located at Kuku, which sat on a promontory with around 15,000 inhabitants. The kingdom had forces consisting of 5,000 musqueteers and 1,500 cavalrymen.
Kuku was one of two major Kabyle kingdoms, the other being the Kingdom of Ait Abbas.List of Ottoman governors of Algiers
This is a list of the Beylerbeys, Pashas and Deys of Ottoman Algeria:
Oruç Barbarossa 1517-1518
Barbaros Hayrettin Pasha Khidr Reis 1518-1545
Hasan Agha 1535-1543
Hadji Pacha 1543-1544
Hasan Pasha 1545-1552 (son of Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha)
Salah Rais 1552-1556
Hasan Corso 1556
Muhammad Kurdogli 1556
Yusuf I 1556
Yahyia Pasha 1557
Hasan Pasha (second time) 1557-1561
Ahmed Bostandji 1561-1562
Hasan Pasha (third time) 1562-1566
Muhammad I Pasha 1566-1568 (son of Salah Rais)
Kılıç Ali Paşa 1568-1571
Arab Ahmed Pasha 1571-1573
Ramdan Pasha 1573-1576Pashas (1576-1700):
Hassan III 1576-1580
Djafar Pasha 1580-1581
Hassan III (second time) 1581-1584
Mami Muhammad Pasha 1584-1586
Dali Ahmed Pasha 1586
Hassan III (third time) 1586-1588
Hızır Pasha 1588-1591
Hadji Shaban Pasha 1591-1593
Mustapha Pasha 1593-1594
Kader Pasha (second time) 1594-1595
Mustapha II Pasha 1596-1599
Daly Hassan Pasha 1599-1601
Somiman Pasha 1601-1603
Muhammad II the eunuch 1605-1607
Mustapha III Pasha 1607
Redwan Pasha 1607-1610
Kussa Mustapha 1610-1614
Hasan IV 1614-1616
Mustapha IV Pasha 1616-1619
Kassan Kaid Kusssa 1619-1621
Kader Pasha 1621-1626
Hassan Khodja 1626-1634
Yusuf II 1634-1645
Ali Bitchin 1645 (debatable)
Ahmed I Pasha 1645-1651
Yusuf III Pasha 1651
Murad Pasha 1651-1656
Ahmed II Pasha 1657
Ibrahim Pasha 1657-1659
Ismail Pasha 1659-1686
Mezzo Morto Hüseyin Pasha 1686-1687
Mustapha V Pasha 1694
Umar Pasha 1694-1695
Musa Pasha 1695-1698
Umar Pasha (second time) 1698-1700
pashas without power 1700-1711
Charkan Ibr 1711-1718Deys (1687-1718):
Ahmed Sharban 1687-1695
Hadji Ahmed ben al-Hadji 1696-1698
Baba Hassan 1698-1700
Hadji Mustapha 1700-1710
Deli Ibrahim 1710
Ali Chauch 1710-1718 (Pasha 1718)Pasha-Deys (1718-1830):
Muhammad III ben Hassan 1718-1724
Abdy Pasha 1724-1732
Ibrahim ben Ramdan 1732-1745
Kutchuk Ibrahim 1745-1748
Muhammed IV Pasha 1748-1754
Baba Ali II Pasha 1754-1766
Muhammad V ben Othman 1766-1791
Baba Hassan 1791-1799
Mustapha VI ben Ibrahim 1799 - 31 August 1805
Ahmed ben Ali 31 August 1805 - 1808
Ali III ben Muhammad 1808
Hadji Ali ben Khrelil 1808-1815
Hadji Muhammad 1815
Umar ben Muhammad 1815-1817
Ali IV Pasha 1817
Muhammad VI ben Ali 1817
Ali V ben Ahmed 1817-1818
Hussein ben Hassan 1818-1830To France June 9, 1830Sack of Baltimore
The Sack of Baltimore took place on June 20, 1631, when the village of Baltimore, West Cork, Ireland, was attacked by the Ottoman Algeria and Republic of Salé slavers from the Barbary Coast of North Africa – Moroccans, Dutchmen, Algerians and Ottoman Turks. The attack was the largest by Barbary pirates on either Ireland or Great Britain.The attack was led by a Dutch captain, Jan Janszoon van Haarlem, also known as Murad Reis the Younger. Murad's force was led to the village by a man called Hackett, the captain of a fishing boat he had captured earlier, in exchange for his freedom. Hackett was subsequently hanged from the clifftop outside the village for conspiracy.Spanish conquest of Oran (1732)
The Spanish conquest of Oran and Mers el-Kebir took place from 15 June to 2 July 1732, between the Kingdom of Spain against the Ottoman protectorate of Algiers. The great Spanish expedition led by Don José Carrillo de Albornoz, Duke of Montemar and Don Francisco Javier Cornejo defeated the Ottoman-Muslim troops under the command of the Bey Hassan, and conquered the fortress-cities of Oran and Mers el-Kebir, ruled and administered by the Ottoman Empire from 1708, during the War of the Spanish Succession, when both cities, ruled by Spain, fell into the hands of the Ottoman Dey of Algiers.Treaty with Algiers (1815)
The Treaty with Algiers was signed on June 30, 1815, between the United States of America and the "Barbary State" of Algiers, nominally part of the Ottoman Empire. As the treaty provided in Article One:
There shall be from the Conclusion of this treaty, a firm inviolable and universal peace and friendship between the President and Citizens of the United States of America on the one part, and the Dey and Subjects of the Regency of Algiers in Barbary, on the other, made by the free consent of both parties and upon the terms of the most favored nations; and if either party shall hereafter grant to any other nation, any particular favor or privilege in navigation or Commerce it shall immediately become common to the other party, freely when freely it is granted to such other nation; but when the grant is conditional, it shall be at the option of the contracting parties to accept, alter, or reject such conditions, in such manner as shall be most conducive to their respective interests. It was ratified by the United States Congress on December 26, 1815.
Administrative regions and provinces of the Ottoman Empire