Skip to main content

Cyprus Convention (1878)


agreement to let the british occupy ottoman-held cyprus in return for promise of military aid.

The RussianOttoman War of 1877 to 1878 ended with the Treaty of San Stefano, forced on the defeated Ottoman Empire by Russia's czar and his minister Nikolas Ignatiev. San Stefano, however, was not to the liking of Britain's prime minister, Benjamin Disraeli. He offered to support the Ottomans and seek a revision of the treaty. In return, he demanded the island of Cyprus. The British had been looking for a naval base in the eastern Mediterranean, and Cyprus was ideally situated. By the Cyprus Convention of June 1878, the Ottoman sultan allowed the British to occupy Cyprus in return for a British guarantee of military aid if Russia refused to withdraw from the eastern Anatolian provinces occupied during the war. It took some time for the details to be arranged to the satisfaction of both parties, and the final terms of the convention were not settled until 3 February 1879. With the tentative agreement in hand by 4 June 1878, however, Britain engineered a drastic revision of the San Stefano treaty in favor of the Ottoman Empire at the Congress of Berlin in July 1878.

see also berlin, congress and treaty of; ignatiev, nikolas pavlovich; san stefano, treaty of (1878).


Hurewitz, J. C., trans. and ed. The Middle East and North Africa in World Politics, 2d edition. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1975.

Shaw, Stanford, and Shaw, Ezel Kural. History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Turkey. 2 vols. Cambridge, U.K., and New York: Cambridge University Press, 19761977.

Zachary Karabell

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Cyprus Convention (1878)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . 19 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Cyprus Convention (1878)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . (April 19, 2019).

"Cyprus Convention (1878)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Retrieved April 19, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.