OLD TURKISH RUINS AND A MODERN MOSQUE
Destiny must surely have had a hand in shaping the affairs of Rumania for, throughout its troubled and bloody history, its people have retained their identity as a national body and today constitute the largest of the Balkan States. During the World War, Rumania fought on the side of the Allied Powers. In the adjustments that followed, its area was much expanded and today it is as large as New York, New Jersey and the New England States, combined. It is like a huge fortress with the highlands of the Carpathian Alps forming a central stronghold. Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland and the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic touch it at the north, Hungary and Yugoslavia at the west, Bulgaria at the south and the Black Sea on the east. The Danube River which forms part of Rumania’s southern boundary is the largest river in Europe. The lower part of the Danube and its mouth are entirely in Rumania.
Unknown to western Europe for centuries, Rumania’s history began as a Roman colony and in the vicinity of Ada Kaleh are to be found numerous traces of the campaign of Trajan. Following the Romans came irresistible hordes of divers nations; the invading Goths, the Gepidae, Huns, Slavonians, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Tartars, Turks and many others. In the thirteenth century were developed the two large independent principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia. In 1861 while still under the rule of the Turks, these two principalities united under the name of Rumania. In 1877, during the Russo-Turkish War, they proclaimed their independence. This mosque and these Turkish fortifications are a reminder of the Turkish regime. The island of Ada Kaleh is almost entirely inhabited by Turks who earn a livelihood by growing roses for the perfume industry and by raising grapes and tobacco.
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