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Colonial Cases


The following material post-dates the Russian seizure of Bulgaria from the Ottoman Empire in 1878. As a result, it is listed here under the heading Bulgaria rather than under the Ottoman Empire.

The Times, 16 November 1886


 Public opinion is dissatisfied at the release of Captain Nabokoff, as it is felt that the Government ought to have made an example of this man.  The Russians say that he is protected by the Capitulations; but, if so, he ought to be tried for his life before a Russian Consular Court.  General Kaubars has notified that the Czar considers the sentence passed by a court-martial on Captain Nabokoff as null; but it is questionable whether a prisoner taken red-handed in an insurrection can plead the benefit of the Capitulations at all. Opinions among the Diplomatic Body are divided on the point; though even in diplomatic circles it is said that if Captain Nabokoff had been executed no Great Power would have supported Russia in a protest.


The Times, 21 December 1891




... The number of French and British subjects in Bulgaria is insignificant, whereas there are nearly 6,000 Austro-Hungarian subjects settled in the country and their numbers are continually increasing.  Next in numerical strength to them come the Italians.  By virtue of the capitulations these colonists are exempted from taxation and their disputes with the Bulgarians are tried before their own Consular Courts.  The Austro-Hungarian Consular Court at Sofia sits several times a week; and although M. de Burian, the Diplomatic Agent, being a man of conciliation, will yield a point in the Capitulations to the Bulgarians when ever he can prudently do dos, yet he is a diplomatist enough to bid the Bulgarians make a grateful note of every such concession.

   To the Bulgarians, of course, the Capitulations are abominable. ...

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School