Abazi

Abazi - what does Abazi surname mean?

This is a surname of Russian origins. It is national and probably describes an Abazian, a person from the small province of Abaza, which lay near Russian border with Turkey on the Black Sea. This province which at its height had a population of about 50,000, was reduced by immigration and war down to only 9000 in the 1930``s at the height of the rule of the evil Stalin. Originally a Christian province, in the 18th century it seems to have embraced Islam, and as such provided a potential serious threat to the Christian rule of the Czar (of Russia). There does not seem to be any explanation as to why this change of religion should have occured, but the same happened in Chechnya where in effect a civil war has been in operation since the 1850``s. Either way some 30,000 people are believed to have left Abaza, mainly through Turkey but also through Bulgaria. At some point in this emigration a number became called Abazi in the same way that other people at other times in history became called Irish, French or English as examples. Abaza is believed to be an ancient pre 10th century Slavic word meaning ``good land`` or similar.

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