The Surname Law of the Republic of Turkey was adopted on June 21, 1934. The law requires all citizens of Turkey to adopt the use of surnames. Turkey's Christian and Jewish citizens were already using surnames, but Muslims generally did not use Western-style surnames. The Surname Law of 1934 changed this. The surname was generally selected by the elderly people of the family and could be any Turkish word (or a permitted word for families belonging to official minority groups: Jews, Greeks and Armenians).
People in the Ottoman Empire carried titles such as "Pasha", "Hoca", "Bey", "Hanım", "Efendi", etc. These titles either defined their formal profession (such as Pasha, Hoca, etc.) or their informal status within the society (such as Bey, Hanım, Efendi, etc.). Ottoman prime ministers (Sadrazam/Vezir-î Azam or Grand Vizier), ministers (Nazır/Vezir or Vizier) and other high-ranking civil servants also carried the title Pasha. Retired generals/admirals or high-ranking civil servants continued to carry this title in civilian life. A "Pasha" did not become a "Bey" after retiring from active military or political service.
The surname law also forbids certain surnames that contained connotations of foreign cultures, nations, tribes, and religions. As a result, many Jews, Georgians, Greeks, Armenians, Assyrians and Kurds were forced to adopt last names of a more Turkish rendition, sometimes directly translating their original surnames, or otherwise just replacing markers such as Pontic Greek '-ides' (son of) with Turkish '-oğlu' (Kazantzoglou, Mitroglou, Mouratoglou, etc.).
^Suny, edited by Ronald Grigor; Goçek,, Fatma Müge; Naimark, Norman M. A question of genocide : Armenians, and Turks at the end of the Ottoman Empire. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN9780195393743.Cite uses deprecated parameter |coauthors= (help)