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Turkish Armenians: How should we call them?
Posted: Sunday, May 13, 2007
A reader of Azad-Hye sent the following comment:

I noticed that you have listed the Armenians in Turkey as "Turkish Armenians." I think it is more appropriate to say "Armenians of Turkey?"


How should we call our brothers and sisters in Turkey? Are they Turkish Armenians or Armenians in Turkey?

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Comment 7

Being actually born in Istanbul Turkey, then emigrated to Los Angeles, I can tell you that I prefer to be called a Bolsahye (istanbul Armenian) rather than being called a Turkish Armenian. I think it is just a commentary of how much we despise that word (Turkish) that we would rather be referred to as BolsaHye. Of course, in a normal conversation with a non Armenian or even a second or third generation Armenian, that distinction will not mean much, and an explanation may be in order. Of course, as many of you already know, Bolis is in reference to Constantinople. So this reference goes way back to before the 1909 revolution of the Young Turks who changed the name to Istanbul. In fact, I can tell you that I am taken back a bit when Persian Armenians refer to us a DajgaHye. Dajig... the Armenian slang word for a Turk or Muslim. In any case though, no offense is ever taken, I am glad that my Armenian brethren are still around, multiplying, being successful and meaningful members of society wherever they end up.


Posted by: Arman   on Thursday, September 06, 2012

Comment 6

The important descriptor is getting the noun (in our case Armenian) correct. As children of the diaspora we all have different adjectives... American-Armenian, Canadian-Armenian, Lebanese-Armenian.

Our brethren in Turkey are no different. My grandparents were from Sepastia and Adana and they were Turkish-Armenians.

The political and historical climate does not change the fact that they live in a sovereign nation other than Armenia...like many of us. Thanks.



Posted by: Stepan   on Thursday, March 05, 2009

Comment 5

All these thoughts are respected as long as we respect ourselves. At the end we are spread all ove the world.


Posted by: Nevart   on Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Comment 4

Any individual that has the right to vote and hold that country's passport, native or adopted, he or she belong to that country's first, since he or she will be serving that countries flags no matter thier origin.

No exception with the Armenians of Turkey, they should be called Turkish Armenians, since, all males have or will be serving the Turkish flag. Being a Turkish, African or Chinese Armenians will not make them less Armenian than the rest of us. We are very proud of each individual that recognizes himself / herself as Armenian or feels proud to be Armenian.



Posted by: Kevork   on Sunday, April 27, 2008

Comment 3

Yes, no geogrphical location OR nationality will change our ethnic fact. I am dual national but always armenian. Strange we always say armenians are smart, still we manage to waste our time on vain issues!

Robert, i agree with ur comment on armenian armenians too, when i was in armenia in Nov 05, i was shocked to learn that some armenians are working as housemaids in turkey!

Posted by: Sonia   on Saturday, June 02, 2007

Comment 2

I concur with Socrates, the end game is that they are Armenians, the prefix merely points to their geographic location.

The only problem would be with Armenian Armenians :)


Robert a. Matossian

Posted by: Robert A. Matossian   on Saturday, May 26, 2007

Comment 1

What is the difference?

Yesterday I was British Armenian, today UAE Armenian - tomorrow I might be a Turkish Armenian.............................

I thought the key word here is - Armenian, and regardless of where we find ourselves today, we are still Armenian.

Best wishes,


Posted by: Socrat   on Thursday, May 17, 2007

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