Caffa, Or Feodosia Kaffa (Theodosia), a seaport of S. Russia, on the S. E. coast of the Crimea, 60 m. E. by N. of Simferopol; pop. about 10,000, exclusive of the garrison. It is built on a wide, open bay of the Black sea. The inhabitants, consisting of Russians, Tartars, Greeks, Armenians, Germans, and Jews, are mostly engaged in fishing and the manufacture of salt. Caviare is made there. Wool and hides are exported. It is the seat of a Greek archbishop, and has, besides Greek churches, a Roman Catholic church, two synagogues, two mosques, a public library, museum, botanic garden, theatre, custom house, and quarantine buildings. It is near the site of ancient Theodosia, which was founded by the Milesians, and was one of the towns of the ancient kingdom of Bosporus. The Genoese established a colony here in the 13th century, and its commerce became so important that the Italians called the Crimean peninsula "Isola di Caffa." In the 14th century it was surrounded by formidable fortifications, the remains of which are still to be seen. The Turks captured it in 1475, and although it declined under their rule in the middle of the 17th century, it had a population of 80,000, and 400 ships were to be seen in its harbor.
It was taken by the Russians in 1770, and was ceded to them by the treaty of Jassy in 1792. Recently the place has obtained considerable importance for its sea bathing, and it is a favorite resort of the higher classes of Simferopol.