the founder of the Turkish Republic
(1923) and its first President (1923-1938). Since then Turkey is a secular state. The country is not ruled by islamic rules, and/or laws.
2. (interjection) A way to praise a Turk on his nationalism or citizenship, especially accompanied by patting him on the back (like "atta boy!").
Someone just came 1st in the 100m sprint, you walk up to him and pat him on the shoulder saying "atäturk!"
He was a very religious person who listened often to the quran and carried always one in his pocket. He set up the diyanet (ministery of religion) and gave the order to make the elmalili tefsiri (a book to explain the quran.) He also let translate some important islamic books to Turkish. His biggest ideal was to set up the Turkic-Islamic union, but the time was not yet come.