Bitlis Vilayet

Bitlis Vilayet (Armenian: Բիթլիսի վիլայեթ Bit'lisi vilayet' Ottoman Turkish: ولایت بتليس) was a first-level administrative division (vilayet) of the Ottoman Empire. Before the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878) it had been part of the Erzurum Vilayet, it was then made a separate vilayet by the Porte.[2] It was one of the six Armenian vilayets of the Empire.[3]

ولایت بتليس
Vilâyet-i Bitlis
Vilayet of the Ottoman Empire
Bitlis Vilayet, Ottoman Empire (1900).png
The Bitlis Vilayet in 1900
• Muslim, 1914[1]
• Armenian, 1914[1]
• Established
• Declaration of the Republic of Turkey
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Erzurum Eyalet
Today part of Turkey

Ethnic groups in the Bitlis Vilayet based on 1914 population statistics for the Ottoman Empire

  Muslim (71%)
  Armenian (27%)
  Others (2%)

At the beginning of the 20th century, Bitlis Vilayet reportedly had an area of 11,522 square miles (29,840 km2), while the preliminary results of the first Ottoman census of 1885 (published in 1908) gave the population as 388,625.[4] The accuracy of the population figures ranges from "approximate" to "merely conjectural" depending on the region from which they were gathered.[4]

Bitlis and Muş were formerly included in the Eyalet of Erzurum. In 1875, they were detached and made a separate vilayet. The sanjak of Siirt was joined to the vilayet of Bitlis from Diyarbekir Vilayet in 1883–84.[5]

Administrative divisionsEdit

Sanjaks of Bitlis Vilayet:[2]

  1. Sanjak of Bitlis (Bitlis, Ahlat, Hizan, Mutki)
  2. Sanjak of Muş (Muş, Bulanık, Sason, Malazgirt, Varto)
  3. Sanjak of Siirt (Siirt, Eruh, Pervari, Şirvan, Kurtalan)
  4. Sanjak of Genç (Genç, Çapakçur, Kulp)


  1. ^ a b "1914 Census Statistics" (PDF). Turkish General Staff. pp. 605–606. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 October 2011. Retrieved 29 January 2011.
  2. ^ a b First Encyclopaedia of Islam: 1913–1936, p. 715, at Google Books By M. Th Houtsma
  3. ^ Klein, Janet (3 August 2012). Jongerden, Joost; Verheij, Jelle (eds.). Social Relations in Ottoman Diyarbekir, 1870-1915. BRILL. p. 148. ISBN 978-90-04-22518-3.
  4. ^ a b Asia by A. H. Keane, 1909, page 460
  5. ^ Krikorian, Mesrob K. "Armenians in the Service of the Ottoman Empire: 1860–1908".

External linksEdit