Abdul Aziz (1830-1876), Sultan of Turkey
Sitter in 6 portraits
Born in Istanbul, Abdul Aziz received an Ottoman education but was an admirer of the material progress that was being made in the West. Aziz reigned in Turkey between 1861 and 1876, during which time he cultivated good relations with France and Great Britain. In 1867, he was the first Ottoman sultan to visit Western Europe, including a visit to England, where he was made a Knight of the Garter by Queen Victoria. The biggest achievement of Aziz's reign was to modernise the Ottoman Navy. By 1875, it ranked as the third largest navy in the world after those of the British and French. Aziz also established the first Ottoman railroad network and Sirkeci Train Station in Istanbul, terminus of the Orient Express.