For example, in the days of the Ottoman Empire when a member of the Turkish infantry was called a JANISSARY (also JANIZARY or JANISARY), the chief of the Sultan’s guards was referred to as the Janissary Agha. Hey look! Here comes one now…
Usually, the crossword clues for this little fellow are rather pedestrian things like [Turkish title] or [Ottoman officer], although I did once get a chuckle out of the punny [Khan opener?].
As always, I learned a bunch of cool new words while researching this one.
One article described today’s word as an AULIC title. I suppose I should know the word aulic, but I don’t. At least I didn’t. It means ‘of or relating to a royal court’. That’s actually a handy vocabulary word, so I’m going to try to remember it. Don’t be surprised if I sneak it into one or two daily words just for practice. (This service isn’t just for *you*, by the way!)
Then, just for fun, I checked to see if the word agha had any Scrabbly extensions. That’s how I discovered YATAGHAN (also ATAGHAN or YATAGAN). Turns out a yataghan is an old Turkish dagger that is usually long and curved. And you know what?
If you look really closely at the guy on the horse, I reckon he is actually carrying one!