Living Museum in Koprivshtitsa Resurrects Bulgaria's Revival Period

Society » CULTURE | August 12, 2011, Friday // 20:58
Bulgaria: Living Museum in Koprivshtitsa Resurrects Bulgaria's Revival Period The St. Cyril and St. Methodius School in Koprivshtitsa (founded in 1837) has been turned into a living museum resurrecting the life during Bulgaria's National Revival Period. Photo by BGNES

A new living museum in Bulgaria's Koprivshtitsa – the town which gave the start of the 1876 April Uprising against the Ottoman Empire – has resurrected the unique life in Bulgaria's 18-19th century National Revival Period.

The five-day summer festival in Koprivshtitsa, which is also known for its impressive traditional Bulgarian architecture, has kicked off Friday, with the living museum located in the local Revival Period school figuring prominently in the festival program.

The St. Cyril and St. Methodius School – founded in 1837 – was turned into Bulgaria's only living museum earlier this year. A living museum is a type of museum featuring reenactments of historical events and ethnographic customs showing the local life.

The St. Cyril and St. Methodius School, which was in operation in 1837-1974 and whose faculty featured legendary Bulgarian 19th-century enlighteners Neifit Rilski and Nayden Gerov, now features the unique Revival Period classrooms and training in the local crafts such as wood-carving and weaving.

Bulgaria's National Revival Period, which ultimately culminated in the National Liberation and independence of Bulgaria – gain in the 1878-1912 period - was a time of socio-economic development and national integration among the Bulgarians who were under the rule of the Ottoman Turkish Empire, featuring both the movement for the restoration of the independence of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church and the National Liberation movement.

Another historical site in Koprivshtitsa that figures prominently in the town festival is the home of Todor Kableshkov, the local revolutionary leader who gave the start of the April Uprising against the Ottoman Empire in 1876.

In addition to resurrecting the life of the Bulgarian Revival Period, the Koprivshtitsa Festival also includes the festivities dedicated to Dimcho Debelyanov (1887-1916), one of the most renowned and beloved Bulgarian poet, a well-known Symbolist killed in World War I on the Balkan Front where his unit fought an Irish division.

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Tags: Koprivshtitsa, Koprivshtitsa Folk Festival, Dimcho Debelyanov, poet, Todor Kableshkov, April Uprising, 1876, National Revival, National Revival Museum, Ottoman Turkey, Ottoman Empire, Neofit Rilski, Nayden Gerov, St. Cyril and St. Methodius
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