Hungarian '48ers in Ottoman Empire

Jared Manasek's picture

Dear List Members,

Kemal Karpat puts the number of Hungarian refugees who fled to the Ottoman Empire at around 16,000. The vast majority of these were troops and various dependents, yet most of the secondary literature focuses on the elite in exile--either framed in terms of foreign or domestic politics, or as agents of modernization.

Would anybody be able to make any recommendations for primary or secondary literature (English/German/Turkish, unfortunately not Hungarian) that might discuss the experiences and roles of the non-elite---soldiers, dependents, other members of the entourage?

Any leads would be greatly appreciated.

Jared Manasek

Categories: Query


You might look at the U.S. Consular despatches from the Constantinople station.  They're available on microfilm.  Some of the refugees coming from Hungary had U.S. passports, and the consulate did some work dispensing aid and helping refugees either travel on to the U.S. or settle.  It's a tricky set of papers to go through, since there are a lot of accusations that the acting consul cheats the refugees out of the large amounts of money he claims he's dispensing.  There are a few letters from the refugees themselves on that issue and a number of reports filtered through the consular staff on general refugee conditions.

-Mike Limberg

Dear Jared, 

Karpat'number is overestimated, actually the number of the emigrants had been much less, in addition most of them, in the same year, in autumn 1849 returned to home. Unfortunately, the most of the sources about the roles of the non-elite are available only Hungarian. I may recommend my article about this topic:

Best wishes,

György Csorba