To this rule Tunisia presents an exception, Tunisians retaining their nationality and laws.
Seven of the departments of state have Frenchmen at their head, the other two, Tunisians: thus the larger proportion of the Bey's ministers are French.
At the same time Turkey maintained the claim that Tunisians were Ottoman subjects.
In 1798 it was attacked by the Tunisians and 933 inhabitants taken away as slaves.
Thereafter it was held in turn by Genoese, Tunisians and Algerines.
The bey has a palace here, and the French resident-general, the British consul, other officials, and many Tunisians have country-houses, surrounded by groves of olive trees.
In 1655 the British admiral, Robert Blake, was sent to teach them a lesson, and he gave the Tunisians a severe beating.