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From drawings by Octavien Dalvimart (d'Alvimart), engraved F.H. Clark



Pacha from the NYPL

    A PACHA is the governor of a province or city, invested with most of the attributes of regal power, as his title implies, it being formed of two Persian words, Pa and Shah, which signify Viceroy.
    In each Government, or Pachalic, the Pacha is the image of the Sultan, and like him is absolute; all power is united in his person; he is the chief both of the military and the finances, of the police and of criminal justice, and in addition to all, he is armed with the power of life and death.
    The ensign of the Pacha's military dignity is two horse tails; such governors as have three, are generally styled Beglerbegs, whilst those who have but one, are called Sanjiacks. It is to these officers, that travellers present their firman for inspection, and it is by their permission alone, the journey can be pursued with safety. Sonnini says, he never unrolled his firman in vain; at the sight of it, the haughty Pacha, the stern Aga, and all the subaltern tyrants who rend, rather than govern, the Ottoman empire, became tractable and obliging; they lifted it to their foreheads in token of respect, and he seldom failed to obtain from them what he wished. The firman, or passport, is a complimentary rhapsody addressed to the respective Pachas, expressive of the Grand Sultan's permission for the bearer to travel freely, or reside in any of the districts during his journey, provided he conforms in all things to the Sovereign order, succour and protection shall be granted to him.

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