The Ottoman Empire and The Great Hunger

During the Great Hunger in Ireland the Ottoman Empire sent £1,000 sterling (about $1,500,000 today) and three shiploads of food to Drogheda, Ireland.

The Ottoman ruler at that time -- Sultan Khaleefah Abdul-Majid – wanted to send £10,000 sterling to Irish farmers but Queen Victoria requested that he send only £1,000 sterling as she had sent only £2,000 sterling. The Sultan did as she requested but also secretly sent three shiploads of food. The British administration tried to block them, but the food arrived secretly at Drogheda harbour.

In commemoration of this, Drogheda added the Ottoman crescent and star to its coat of arms. Their football club’s emblem retains this design until this day.

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Comment by Mairead Geary on July 27, 2015 at 9:00pm

I read about how instructions were sent to the Sultan to decrease his monetary contribution so that it would be less than Queen Victoria's but I had never before heard about Drogheda adding the Ottoman crescent and star to its coat of arms. Thanks for the information.

Comment by Daniel Williams on August 2, 2015 at 12:22pm
A great piece of information at a time when we hear nothing about the Muslim world but the atrocities they rain down on the Christians living in their midst. This anecdote shows us that there is some good in all of our brothers and sisters living in the world if we will only look for it.
Comment by Thomas j shea on August 11, 2015 at 11:14pm
Ottoman Empire was in ? O okay.......
Comment by Thomas j shea on August 17, 2015 at 9:58pm

Hey mairead!!!!! How's my irish colleen doin???? Slainte'!!!!

Comment by Mairead Geary on August 19, 2015 at 1:24pm

All the best to you too, Thomas.

Comment by michael dunne on September 28, 2016 at 7:28pm

Interesting article and thank you Des. Today we have the Turkish Irish Educational and Cultural Society...TIECS which is an excellent organization arranging communication and social bridges of all kinds between our two nations.

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