Talk:Hayreddin Barbarossa

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Former good article nominee Hayreddin Barbarossa was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
December 2, 2006 Good article nominee Not listed
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Please do not edit archived pages. If you want to react to a statement made in an archived discussion, please make a new header on THIS page. Baristarim 00:25, 28 November 2006 (UTC)



Barbarossa was an ethnic Turk. The April issue of Turkish magazine ( states in the article about him that Barbarossa clearly identifies he's of Turkish origin in the inscription of the mosque that he had financed in Algiers. KaraSipahi (talk) 11:34, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

Actually his mother was a daughter of a Greek priest, but his father was a Turk.--Cerian (talk) 18:16, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

Naming again[edit]

If the article is named "Barbarossa" since it is commonly known(?) among English speakers, surely it should begin with the full name of this person. Why does it start with "khair ad din" while proper Turkish name would be "Hayreddin"? Shouldn't the encyclopedia respect national names where they are not "commonly known" in English? Filanca 14:45, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

I changed the name since nobody objected, and added a poem. Filanca 20:54, 7 November 2006 (UTC)

I have changed the name back to Khair ad-Din since the modern Turkish spelling Hayreddin is already given between brackets in the same sentence. I think it would be anachronistic to use the modern Turkish spelling since this was only introduced in the 20th century, by Atatürk. Before that time Turkish was written in the Arabic alphabet, and a transliteration like Khair ad-Din points up the structure of this name, as it would have done to the Turks of Barbarossa's time. There is no single correct transliteration for Arabic, and other forms would do just as well, e.g. Khayr al-Din, Khayr ud-Din, etc. Most scholarly transcriptions write "Kh" as an underscored "K": Kair al-Dīn). In pronunciation the "l" in the article "al" is assimilated to the following "D", hence "ad-Din" instead of "al-Din", but the article is always written as "al" in Arabic. If you insist on using the modern Turkish transliteration of "Hayreddin", you should also write "Paşa" instead of "Pasha".
One more thing: I don't know Turkish, but I have the impression that the spelling "Hayrettin" is preferred over "Hayreddin" in modern Turkish. In Google, "barbaros hayrettin" yields 65,800 hits and "barbaros hayreddin" only 17,400. So, even in modern Turkish there seems to be no consensus on the correct spelling of the name. One more argument to stick with Khair ad-Din, I'd say.
Bontekoe 11:42, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

This person is not Arabic, he is Turkish and Turkish names are pronounced differently from Arabic ones even if they are of Arabic origin. Wikipedia accepts Turkish spelling for Turkish people. Example: Mehmed II not Muhammad II. English-speaking writers follow Turkish spelling too. An example is John Freely in Strolling Through Istanbul (find the full reference in the artivle). I would not insist on Pasha over Paşa, but the first one seems to be the common use in English. See Atatürk article: "Gazi Mustafa Kemal Pasha". The double use of "Hayreddin" and "Hayrettin" is not a reason for reverting to a non-turkish spelling. But since you alluded to that, although both usages are accepted in modern Turkish, use of "d" is more common for historical personages and "t" for modern names. Although you may get more hits with "t" spelling, "d"s are more common in scholarly sources, hence I prefer it here, but "t" is not "wrong" strictly speaking. These are the reasons for re-writing the Turkish name instead of Arabic one. Filanca 17:35, 26 November 2006 (UTC)

If you put it that way, Ataturk is a Greek too and fought his own people for people he wasn't even related to. Makes sense. (talk) 05:21, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

The point is that Barbarossa was neither Turkish nor Arabic. He was a native of the Greek island Lesbos, so if you want to use modern concepts of nationality, he was a Greek. As you will doubtless be aware, however, in Barbarossa's time there was no such entity as "Turkey", or "Greece" for that matter. There was just the Ottoman Empire, which included a multitude of different ethnic groups, Turks being one of them. Calling Barbarossa "Turkish" is plainly unhistorical and in point of fact an expression of modern Turkish nationalism.
Just as relevant to this case is that the name Khair ad-Din is purely Arabic. The modern Turkish rendering is an attempt at a phonetic rendering of the Turkish pronunciation of an Arabic name. As I said, the transliteration "Khair ad-Din" points up the structure of this name, which means something like "The goodness of faith", while forms like Hayreddin are just a meaningless combination of sounds (I suspect this may have been Atatürk's intention all along).
As to Hayreddin being being the common form of this name among English-speaking writers, I can do no better than cite the Encyclopedia Britannica, which speaks of Khayr ad-Din. The only existing English biography of Barbarossa is Ernle Bradford's "The Sultan's admiral", which speaks of "Kheir-ed-Din".
I am neither Turkish, nor Arab, nor a Muslim, and I don't really care very much how you write it. As I pointed out, though, the spelling "Barbaros Hayreddin Paşa" is already given between brackets in the first sentence of the article, so I'd say there is no point in repeating it. Moreover, Wikipedia's naming conventions say: "If you are talking about a person, country, town, movie or book, use the most commonly used English version of the name for the article, as you would find it in other encyclopedias and reference works." So just out of curiosity, I'll change the name back again to Khair ed-Din and see what happens. 20:36, 26 November 2006 (UTC)

You must be joking. What is your reference for Barbaros being Greek? Surely Hayreddin is not a Greek name. Why dont you rename the article with a Greek name? :) Midilli was an Ottoman land and ethnic Turks lived there as well as ethnic Greeks. Of course Hayreddin is phonetic representation of his name, this is what an alphabet normally do :) This person was not called Khair-ad Din (which is a phonetic representation of an Arabic name). Wikipedia convention for Turkish historical names is to accept Turkish rendering as in Mehmed II. Unless there is a Mohammad II article, this one should stay as Hayreddin. Filanca 05:48, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

Dear Mr Filanca, I never said Barbarossa was Greek. I said you might call him that "if you want to use modern concepts of nationality", and the implication was of course that would be unhistorical. As to Wikipedia naming conventions, I quoted chapter and verse (the Encyclopedia Britannica and Bradford's biography), but you ignored that. Obviously you are prepared to continue an issue like this indefinitely, so I'll let you have it your way.
Bontekoe 14:46, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

If you used modern conceptions of nationality Barbarossa would be Ottoman. When we say he was Turkish, naturally we speak of his ethnicity, not meaning he was a citizen of the Turkish Republic. I've noted that some English sources use Khair-ad Din, while I've provided another source in English using "Hayreddin". A Google search for "Barbarossa Khair" and "Barbarossa Hayreddin" plus "Barbarossa Hayrettin" gives close hits (not including English pages with "Barbaros Hayreddin"). Evidently there is no consensus among sources about spelling of this person's names. And you seem to overlook the fact that there seem to be a consensus in Wikipedia, about using Turkish spellings for Turkish people. Even in this article; names of Arabic or Persian origin used by Ottoman Turks, like Yakup, Mehmed II, shehzade, Selim, are written in Turkish spelling. Writing those names as if they were Arabic would amount to calling a Frenchman Petrus instead of Pierre.

About "hayreddin" being a "meaningless combination of sounds", yes, probably some ordinary Turks living in Ottoman times would think such an Arabic phrase was so. While more scholarly ones would make sense out of it. Still this is the way it was pronounced. Turkish latin alphabet did not change the way people speak. Filanca 22:02, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

I agree that referring to Barbarossa as Turkish or Greek is anachronistic. He is of the muslim millet of the time -- millet literally means nation in today's Turkish but in this context does not denote nationality as we know it -- and that includes speakers of Turkish, Greek, Bulgarian, Albanian, and so on as well myriad crosses between the groups. That said, modern Turkey, having been established by remnants of the muslim millet, is the main "inheritor" of Ottoman history, so it does make sense to filter Barbarossa's name through modern Turkish usage.

The tranformation of last-letter "d"s to "t" is an Ataturk-era grammatical novelty and, as pointed above, does pose a bit of a problem for historical names, as in whether to use Mehmed or Mehmet. To stick to current Turkish grammatical conventions, one would be inclined to use the latter spelling form although there does exist a "dissident" intellectual position that favors the former. Gdeleuze 01:22, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Good article review[edit]

This article has been nominated for Good Article review. Baristarim 00:04, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

It seems to me that it needs more work to tighten it up and give it a compelling story line. There is at present, in my view, too much essentially irrelevant clutter about each small event and every single ship allegedly captured. Cosal 01:00, 30 November 2006 (UTC)
Ok, I will try to see what I can do.. Baristarim 04:26, 30 November 2006 (UTC)
You may also want to greatly shorten the first section which mainly deals with Oruc Reis and is pretty much a verbatim repetition of what is already written on the Oruc Reis page. Cosal 14:52, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

And while you are at it, do you think you can do some work on Ali Pacha, the Ottoman commander at Lepanto in 1571, about whom I can find very little and who is often confused with Kilic Ali Pasha? Cosal 14:52, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

Ok I will try to do it tomorrow, i really have to get some sleep :) Baristarim 22:27, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

back then that island was ottoman soil and ethnich Turks lived there. Barbaros was an ethnic Turk.

Barbarossa was an ethnic Albanian, just like Ataturk. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:22, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Is there anything to confirm he was Albanian and not Turkish? >Drakonis< (talk) 19:09, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

he was an ottoman, end of discussion. (talk) 08:44, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

I'm really sorry. This is a quite good article - aye, the lead could use a little work, but otherwise, it's pretty good - but it lacks citations, and thus fails a key part of the GA requirement. I'm quite willing to help with the Citation process, at least from a procedural point, as I'm not familiar with Barbarossa himself much, but I've done a citing up before, and it's not exactly a quick process. Have a look at WP:CITE and Wikipedia:Footnotes, and... well, let's get this up to GA, and quite possibly FA once that's done. Adam Cuerden talk 16:17, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Biography assessment rating comment[edit]

WikiProject Biography Assessment Drive

This article is shy of a GA rating because it needs citations and other details such as an appropriate infobox.

The article may be improved by following the WikiProject Biography 11 easy steps to producing at least a B article. -- Yamara 22:09, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

Differences between this article and the Encyclopaedia of Islam.[edit]

This article states that Barbarossa arrives in Istanbul in 1532 and that sultan Suleyman then gives him the title of kaptan-ı derya and beylerbey of North-Africa. However, the Encyclopaedia of Islam states that Barbarossa indeed reaches Istanbul by the end of 1532, but then soon leaves for Aleppo after an invitation from the Grand Vizier Ibrahim Pasha, who bestowed on him officially the office of Kapudan Pasha, with the title Djeza'ir beglerbegi, which should be understood as "Beglerbeg of the islands", and not of Algiers. Does this mean that Suleyman gives him this title and Ibrahim Pasha makes it official? Or is this simply something which differs in E.I. and you sources? If so, could you maybe state in a footnote that there are sources stating otherwise? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17:04, 7 April 2007 (UTC).

Actually in Ottoman Empire, grand viziers were the only allowed persons that could carry the same stamp with the sultans. So grand viziers orders' were taken into account as if they were sultans', and here I think we had the same situation. For that time it was not important if the order was from grand vizier or the sultan himself because it would be signed with a similar stamp. Prelude 33 02:35, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Article name[edit]

Shouldn't it be Barbarossa Hayreddin or Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha? Adam Cuerden talk 02:33, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha would be the closest form to the original Ottoman/Turkish Barbaros Hayreddin Paşa.

Hayreddin Barbarossa, on the other hand, is the original Italian form (in Italian language, the adjective follows the name; e.g. you say "macchina rossa" (car red) instead of "red car" in English, where adjective comes first and name/noun comes afterwards) Flavius Belisarius 12:39, 18 June 2007 (UTC)


The first paragraph of the Legacy section reads like a piece of Turkish propaganda. How is it related to article at all?

I don't know, but it seems to be fine to me. Also, remember to sign your posts with four tildes when you do. I shouldn't have to remind anyone, nor should anyone else.Drakonis 18:39, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

Inclusion of portions of Oruç's article[edit]

It seems that alot of this article was probably copied and pasted from Oruç's article. Any ideas as to why?Drakonis 16:53, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

Minor Correction[edit]

In the section Kaptan-ı Derya of the Ottoman Navy one can read: "In the same year Barbarossa captured Corfu from Venice..."

This is wrong.... Corfu was raided and pillaged but not captured from Venice

in particular: "in 1537 the devastating raid of the Turkish admiral Khaireddin Barbarossa took place with the consequent obliteration of the agricultural cultivations (vineyards, olive-trees) of the island and the enslavement of nearly all the population of the countryside (roughly 20.000 Corfiots were sold as slaves in Istanbul). Luckily the Old Fortress was well defended by a 4,000-strong garrison with 700 guns and when several assaults failed to carry the fortifications, the Turks reluctantly re-embarked." The previous excerpt is taken from which is stated as source of the Wikipedia article for Corfu

This can also be confirmed from books about the History of Corfu, for example: Old Corfu: History and Culture (3rd edition) by Nondas Stamatopoulos

( (talk) 08:20, 10 May 2008 (UTC))

Red Beard[edit]

Not to be nitpicking, but as I know it, and I have no idea how to verify this, Barbaros did not have a red beard. It was his brother Oruc who was red bearded. After this famed corsair was finally cornered and killed, and his head paraded all over Spain, his brother, young Barbaros, vowed revenge. He dyed his beard red with henna in Oruc's memory and then proceeded to to make Mediteranean a Turkish lake. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:16, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Hayreddin Barbaossa did have a red beard actually. Redman19 (talk) 10:19, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Nickname is a remnant from his father whom had actually red beard--Cerian (talk) 18:23, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

A 'jannisary sipahis' doesn't exist[edit]

His father cannot be a 'janissary sipahi' because such thing doesn't exist and never existed. I have never read or heard of such a thing like a 'janissary sipahi'. What is that supposed to be then? Everybody with some knowledge about the Ottoman military system, would know:

  • That a janissary is an infantryman and a sipahi is a cavalryman. So it is impossible to be an infantry and cavalry soldier at the same time.
  • A sipahi was given land by the sultan in new conquered areas. This was not given to janissaries. Yakup Aga, was given land for his military services.
  • Janissaries were not allowed to marry, they lived in their barracks. So if Yakup Aga was a janissary how come he gets married?
  • Janissaries and Sipahis were different types of soldiers.
  • Also it is not possible to be an janissary and then turn into a sipahi and vice-versa.

THUS he was a Sipahi and NOT a Janissary Sipahi.

And I do no invent this, all other sources call his father a Sipahi. They do not mention anything about janissary.

If you want more information read the janissary and sipahi article.

I want to congratulate the person who found the source for 'janissary sipahi', because for finding such a weird source DragonTiger23 (talk) 12:08, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

nice one mate, thank you. (talk) 08:59, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

Where is "janissary sipahi" ? I cannot find in the article. Takabeg (talk) 14:49, 2 July 2011 (UTC)

Pirate box[edit]

I'm not sure, he is a pirate. His men might be involved in piracy but Barbossa is the commander of Ottoman navy. He is also an administrator and divan (supreme council) member. --Kafkasmurat (talk) 10:16, 8 March 2014 (UTC)

A number of governors in the english and french colonies were also involved in piracy in the Antilles (often for the sake of their country). A corsair and a pirate aren't that removed and often it amounts to foreign perception. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:51, 15 September 2014 (UTC)
yes, similar function in modern military such as Nazi Kriegsmarine was operated in similar way, captain Hans Langsdorff as example, should we rate him as privateer pirate too due to his activity as German Navy pirate?Ahendra (talk) 21:15, 27 February 2015 (UTC)