DOBRUDJA (Bulgarian Dobritch, Rumanian Dobrogea), also written Dobrudscha, and Dobruja, a region of south-eastern Europe, bounded on the north and west by the Danube, on the east by the Black Sea, and on the south by Bulgaria. Pop. (1900) 267,808; area, 6000 sq. m. The strategic importance of this territory was recognized by the Romans, who defended it on the south by "Trajan's Wall," a double rampart, drawn from Constantza, on the Black Sea, to the Danube. In later times it was utilized by Russians and Turks, as in the wars of 1828, 1854 and 1878, when it was finally wrested from Turkey. By the treaty of Berlin, in 1878, the Russians rewarded their Rumanian allies with this land of mountains, fens and barren steppes, peopled by Turks, Bulgarians, Tatars, Jews and other aliens; while, to add to the indignation of Rumania, they annexed instead the fertile country of Bessarabia, largely inhabited by Rumans. Af ter 1880, however, the steady decrease of aliens, and the development of the Black Sea ports, rendered the Dobrudja a source of prosperity to Rumania.
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