What's new Main list of maps Search Buy maps FAQ

Plate 27 from Die Bulgaren in ihren historischen, ethnographischen und politischen Grenzen by Ishirkoff & Zlatarski Index no. 0048:0027
The Ethnological Map by Sax (1877)  —  Ethnographische Karte der Europäischen Türkei und ihrer Dependenzen zu Anfang des Jahres 1877

The green-bordered text below is is the English version of the explanatory text, from the page facing the map. Another page on this site gives the full text in German, English, French, and Bulgarian.

27. – The Ethnological Map by Sax (1877).

This Austrian map is the result of a seventeen-years labour. Karl Sax has been a long time Austro-Hungarian Consul at Sarajewo, at Rustschuk and at Adrianople. He crossed European Turkey from end to and (he knew the works and maps by Boué, Lejean, von Hahn, Kanitz, Kiepert, Syvet, and others), gathering material which he corrected according to the information received from almost all Austro-Hungarian Consuls and Vice-consuls of European Turkey: and after all this he published a long series of important researches about the populations of these countries. On account of Sax's authoritative knowledge of the subject his map is of great importance. It has been published in 1878 by the Imperial and Royal Geographical Society of Vienna, whose competence on this question is well known. The pamphlet contains statistical information about the different peoples of European Turkey under the title "Ethnographische Karte der europäischen Türkei und ihrer Dependenzen zur Zeit des Beginns des Krieges von 1877 von Karl Sax, K. und K. österrelch-ungarischer Konsul in Adrianopel". ("Ethnological Map of European Turkey and her Dependencies at the Tlme of the Beginning of the War of 1877, by Karl Sax, I. and R. Austro-Hungarian Consul at Adrianople. Published by the Imperial and Royal Geographical Society, Vienna 1878"). From the following remark contained in the pamphlet one can judge how the Austrian geographical Society appreciated the scientific value of this map:

"Besides the map by Consul Sax we also possess the sketch of an ethnological map designed by Baron Karl von Kraus according to best sources in which the nationalities of the inhabitants of Turkey and their faiths are taken into consideration, as Sax has done it too on his map. A close comparison of both maps shows their nearly complete conformity and convinces us that the map by Consul Sax, the result of seventen years' labour on the spot, offers a map-designed-view of the ethnology of Turkey which is nearest to the facts."

In order to understand the full importance of this estimate of Sax's map by the Imnperial and Royal Geographical Society one has to keep in mind that the map was designed in 1878 and that at that time the official diplomacy of Austria, being afraid of Russia's expansionist policy, fought openly for a separation of Macedonia from the newly created Principality of Bulgaria.

This fac-simile map is reproduced here with imperceptible alterations in its dimensions. According to it, nearly all Macedonia (with Albanian patches west and north-west), and the whole district of Nisch are chiefly inhabited by Bulgarians.

Keywords: Turkey in EuropeSax

You can buy a higher-resolution version of this scan for $10: see the price list.