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Constantza


Polish community    EN

Author: ARDELEANU KONSTANTIN

The Muslim community from Constanţa was extremely numerous, but it was not so well organised. The mufti was appointed by the Ministry of Cults and Instruction. Hagi Mustafa Şerif held this position from 1878 to 1894, followed in 1895 by Bechir Arif, who was for 26 years imam of the Hunchiar mosque in Constanţa and cadi at the local Muslim court. Seid Ahmed Bechir (1895–1901) was succeeded by Husein Ali (Avmi) (1901–1909), a native of Caucasia and with studies at Istanbul, former hatip at the mosques of Isaccea and Tulcea in Dobrudja. Hafuz Rifat Abdul Gelil (1909–1914) was born in Dobrudja, studied in the Ottoman Empire and was muezzin, imam and hatip at Medgidia (1897–1909) [1].

The mufti was elected according to law, from among the Muslim people with proper theological education, and also a positive issue with Romanian speaking. At such an election the president of the electoral office was the cadi of the Muslim court [2].

A “Muslim Society” was founded in 1901 with the aim to support the mosques and Muslim schools from the province of Dobrudja, and was also responsible with the recruitment of the religious and didactic staff necessary for these institutions [3].

The community was a moral person since 1913, probably after the organisation of a congress of the Muslims from Dobrudja in November that year. According to subsequent data its mission was to represent the Muslim population and to defend its interests in front of all public authorities, to support mosques and Muslim schools, as well as to support and create new cultural, religious, economic, and social assistance institutions. It was led by a committee composed of 11 members, of whom seven elected by the general assembly with a secret vote or by acclamation and four rightful members, the mufti, the cadi, the military confessor, and a delegate of the Muslim didactic staff of the Muslim school of Constanţa [4].

 


[1] Ibram Nuredin, Comunitatea musulmană din Dobrogea. Repere din viaţa spirituală. Viaţa religioasă şi învăţământ în limba maternă (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 1998), 123–124.

[2] Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale, Primăria municipiului Constanţa, File 45/1899, 1–4.

[3] Anghel Constantinescu, Monografia Sfintei Episcopii a Dunării de Jos: alcătuită la plinirea a 40 de ani de domnie a M.S. Carol I, Regele României (Bucharest: Editura Socec, 1906), 380.

[4] Doina Păuleanu, Virgil Coman, Moscheea Regală Carol I Constanţa. 1910–2010 (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2010), 58–62.


References

Archival sources:

Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale (The National Archives, Constanţa Branch), Primăria municipiului Constanţa (The Municipality of Constanţa), files starting with 1878.

Bibliography:

Constantinescu, Anghel, Monografia Sfintei Episcopii a Dunării de Jos: alcătuită la plinirea a 40 de ani de domnie a M.S. Carol I, Regele României [The Monograph of the Holy Bishopric of the Lower Danube: Written at the Celebration of 40 Years of Reign of H.M. Charles I, King of Romania] (Bucharest: Editura Socec, 1906).

Nuredin, Ibram, Comunitatea musulmană din Dobrogea. Repere din viaţa spirituală. Viaţa religioasă şi învăţământ în limba maternă [The Muslim Community from Dobrudja. Landmarks of Spiritual Life. Religious Life and Education in the Mother Tongue] (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 1998).

Păuleanu, Doina, Coman, Virgil, Moscheea Regală Carol I Constanţa. 1910–2010 [Charles I Royal Mosque. 1910–2010] (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2010).

Ursu, Nicolina, Turco-tătarii dobrogenii în recensăminte şi statisticile româneşti (1878–1916) [The Turks and Tartars from Dobrudja in Romanian Censuses and Statistics], in vol. Tătarii în istorie şi în lume [The Tartars in History and in the World], edited by T. Gemil (Bucharest: Editura Kriterion, 2003).


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