Commander of navy (B. 1496 D-.June 25, 1587). He is also known as Uluç Reis. His birth year is not exactly known, but he died around the age of ninety. He is originally from Kalabra and his real name is assumed to be Giovan Dionigi Galeni. According to some European historians; he was an Italian named Uchiali and he was captured as a prisoner on his way to Napoli in 1520 by Cezayirli Ali Ahmet Reis. But, as we see that his father is indicated as Abdulmennan and Abdullah in the foundation for the mosque built upon his name; we can say he is a believer.
He converted to Islam, joined the sailors and joined the cortege of Turgut Reis in 1548, and he contributed a lot in Mehdiye defense (1549) and Cerbe raids (1550). He joined the Trablusgarp campaign of Turgut Reis in 1551. His first known duty is Belediunnap commandership. He was put under investigation due to complaints. Despite Memi Reis was ordered to bring him into Algeria by Algerian Governor Salih Pasha's Order; he ran away from him and arrived in Istanbul. Documents have indicated that he is one of the Algerian leaders; and Uluc Ali was appointed as head of "Sultan's bodyguards". When Algerian Governor Salih Pasha died, he went to Algeria in order to recall the navy and joined the Ottoman navy sailed into Mediterranean in 1557 under the rule of Piyale Bey.
He went to Cerbe campaign in 1560 with Piyale Pasha. When the navy was directed to Benfica, he was sent to Cuka Island for exploration where he imprisoned a ship and did a lot during the siege. As a result of his services, he was appointed as the ruler of Sigla and took part of protection in the region. He had conflicts with rulers of Sakiz Island when he was tracking grain smugglers (1564) and his brother Ali was murdered by them. Then he participated in Malta siege as Alexandria Ruler with a fleet of six ships. When the Tripoli Governor Turgut Pasha was martyred, he became the Tripoli Governor in July 1565. Although Mehmet Pasha became the Tripoli Governor for a while, but people of Tacura revolted, Uluc Ali Pasha was appointed to this position again. He was praised by the Sultan as he oppressed the revolt (September 20, 1567). He has informed the movement of Spanish fleet in Mediterranean to Istanbul and requested precautions to be taken. He became the Algerian Governor on June 27, 1568. When the people of Tunisia invited him, he conquered Tunisia in March 1570 and returned to Algeria.
Uluc Ali Pasha was ordered to join the navy of Pertev Mehmet Pasha for Battle of Leponto and he went to Egriboz on May 27, 1571. In the battle made against the navies of Spain, Papacy and Venice on October 7, 1571 at Leponto; the Ottoman navy was defetaed, but his fleet consisting of thirty ships were safe. Because of this sucess, he became the Navy Commander Governor of Algeria and his name Uluç was transformed to Kılıç; and so was he named. His first thing after coming to office was to renew the navy. He made new ships to be built it the shipyards. Tunisia was also under his liability (February 1572). When the new navy has won victories in Koron and Navarin Ports against the allied navy forces (September 1572); he retırned to Istanbul.
When the Spanish navy invaded Tunisia during the Tunisian Governorship of Haydar Pasa in 1573; the navy under the commandership of Kılıç Ali Pasa and Koca Sinan Pasha's leadership reached to Tunisia on May 15, 1574 and Tunisia was recaptured under the Ottoman rule. After that, the navy under the rule of Kilic Ali Pasha has sailed into the Black Sea in 1579 to support the Sirvan campaign. Kilic Ali Pasha reached to the shores of Georgia and made Fas Castle to be built. Within this period, he assigned some sea lords to preserve the commerce in Mediterranean.
Kılıc Ali Pasa has taken Vizier Ibrahim Pasha, who was assigned to setlle the problems in Egypt in 1583 to Alexandria and Islam Giray, who replaced the revolting Crimean Lord Mehmet Giray to Kefe. And he was appointed to carry Osman Pasha from Sinop to Kefe in order to suppress the revolt in Crimea. Kılıc Ali Pasha could not lead the navy in Mediterranean (1586) probably due to his age and illness; and he passed away on June 25, 1587. Poet Talibi said "Gitti bu dâr-ı fenâdan kapudan” and Poet Ulvi said "Arşa astın Alî gibi kılıcı” after his death.
Kılıc Ali Pasha was also named as "Big Captain" and he made some modifications in Istanbul Shipyard to make bigger ships with some changes to make saddling easier and faster. A big "ship" (baştarda) was started to be built in the name of Sultan Murad the Third, and he was praised by Sultan. He made a solid castle to be built at the entrance of Navarin Port, deployed cannons and soldiers, securing the place. He had brought a resembling mountain made from wood with the work of thousands of slaves for the circumcision ceremony of Prince Mehmet in 1582; and he donated the house he made built to watch the ceremony as a teacher's house (School, course) for the education of children.
It is known that Kılıc Ali Pasha has made a mosque, fountain and bathhouse and a mosque in Bogazici in 1580 and a bathhouse for Sultan at Topkapi Palace in 1586.
REFERENCE: Ali Haydar Emir / Kılıç Ali ve Lepanto (1931), Aziz Samih İlter / Şimalî Afrika’da Türkler (1936), İbrahim Alaeddin Gövsa / Türk Meşhurları (1946), Şerafettin Turan / “Rodos’un Zaptından Malta Muhasarasına" (Kanunî Armağanı, 1970, s. 82, 86), Kâtip Çelebi / Tuhfetü’l-kibâr (Prepared by Orhan Şaik Gökyay, 1973), İdris Bostan / TDV İslam Ansiklopedisi (v. 25, p. 411-412, 2002).