Bulgaria Continues to Fear Macedonian Minority

Views on BG | June 5, 2009, Friday // 08:55| Views: | Comments: 18
Bulgaria Continues to Fear Macedonian Minority: Bulgaria Continues to Fear Macedonian Minority Photo by actualno.com

From MINA (Macedonian International News Agency)

After two decades of political fighting, yesterday the highest Bulgarian Court once again denied the registration of "Omo Ilinden Pirin", a Macedonian Political Party in Bulgaria.

Bulgaria is member of the European Union, and has lost two cases brought against it at the Strasbourg Court by Omo Ilinden Pirin. Each time, Strasbourg has orded Bulgaria to pay financial damages (40,000 euros) to Omo Ilinden and register the party immediately.

Bulgaria had paid the court damages, however continues to forbid registration of a Macedonian political party.

According to Omo Ilinden Pirin, Bulgaria continues to deny registration of this party for fear what would happen in an election and the parliament seats ethnic Macedonians would take in Sofia.

If we were to glance in Bulgarian archives, the Bulgarian census from 1926 showed 395,000 Macedonians, all concentrated in Western Bulgaria, commonly known as Pirin Macedonia. For each census after 1926, the Government has not allowed the listing of the Macedonian ethnicity. The Turkish ethnicity is allowed.

Bulgaria and its neighbor Greece in recent years have increased their anti Macedonian propaganda and activities.

The coordination between the two Governments came into the spotlight a month ago when Greek FM visited Sofia to showcase a book published by the Greek Government of the connection i.e. Bulgarian roots of the Macedonians.

Further light on anti Macedonian activities by Sofia and Athens surfaced few days ago when Bulgarian Customs Authorities confiscated 15,000 DVD's and books at the Bulgarian - Greek border. The shipment was mainly Macedonian books, dvd's for the Macedonians in Greece, ordered by the Rainbow Party.

The authorities in Sofia, for a week now have not allowed for the books/dvd's to enter Greece, nor are they returning the shipment to its sender.


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» To the forumComments (18)
GrueFski - 14 Aug 2015 // 17:35:02

"[...]does not DISTINGUISH[...]", not "[...]distinct[...]"

The "y" in Polish is different from the "y" that I use to render in Latin script the Bulgarian Cyrillic ъ. I suppose it is more similar (but maybe not idetical) to the Russian ы. I use it to transcribe and especially transliterate Bg in Latin script since it is the only vowel (in some Latin-script languages "y" is never a vowel, it is a semi-vowel) left unused in Latin script/alphabet.

"Gorals are part of a continuum of Carpathian Slavic highlander groups, including Hutsuls, Lemkos, and Boykos. The various dialects spoken by the Gorals descend from Proto-Slavic from the Eastern Lechitic, Old Polish area, superimposed by Slovak. In other words, the language is of Polish origin, but has been influenced by Slovak in recent centuries. In addition to Polish, the language contains some vocabulary of other origins, including Slovak, Vlach, and words of uncertain origin that have cognates in other languages of the Carpathian region. Mazurzenie may occur.
For most Gorals today, the decisive factor in their self-identification with a nationality is not ethnic but territorial. For example, those living in areas under a long tradition of belonging to the Polish state identify themselves as Polish, while those living in Slovakia have identified themselves as Slovaks, with notable exceptions to this rule on both sides of the border.
Historically, the issue of their ethnic identity has been controversial and resulted in claims and counterclaims by both Poland and Czechoslovakia. Gorals, like many other peasant communities in Central Europe, determined their own ethnic identities within the nation state system during the 19th and early 20th century.[4] Although nationalist propaganda was generated by both Poles and Slovaks, this process of the Gorals' identification with a nationality was still not complete when the border was finalized in 1924."

"Our lack of distinction between short and long vowels leads to confusion on how to properly pronounce Bulgarian names. E.g. it is disputed among tourists whether to say Nesebyr, Nesebar or Neseber."
The distinction between short and long vowels has nothing to do with the way you pronounce the last vowel of Bg word Nesebyr (Несебър).

Warfou - 14 Aug 2015 // 00:41:15

GrueFsky, I agree that Slovenian is somewhat different compared to Polish than e.g. Croatian, not speaking of Slovak or Czech which are quite close. However, the word you mention (SLO: tukaj, BG: tuka) is in Polish: tutaj, so paradoxically quite close to... Slovenian.

S?awk?w is pronounced: "suafkuv". The "o" with apostrophe was historically the long "o" (like e.g. the omega contrary to omikron in ancient Greek) but since 15th century is it is pronounces as "u". From this time on Polish does not distinct between short vowels and the long vowels, all are short.

Polish grammar is different than Bulgarian, it uses all the flexion. Bulgarian grammar seems to me more close to modern Greek (I know modern Greek to some extent) than to Polish.

Our lack of distinction between short and long vowels leads to confusion on how to properly pronounce Bulgarian names. E.g. it is disputed among tourists whether to say Nesebyr, Nesebar or Neseber. All three sound completely differently in Polish but when I hear it in Bulgarian, the end vowel is reduced sounding somehow between the said three. Nevertheless, I choose to say"Nesebyr" for I believe it is the closest to the original BG pronounciation.

What regards G?rals - they have Valah roots dating back to early middle ages when they settled in Polish subcarpatian region. However, now they are considered (and consider themselves) Polish. Knowing personally a few of them, I could even accuse them of nationalism and particularly conservative catholic attitude compared to other Poles. I never heard about anyone of them claiming to be a polonized Slovak. As they are much more "hot-blooded" than average Poles I would even say that such a suggestion could result in a personal assault, if only made in their presence ;-)

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 14:04:33

Slovenian, in my opinion, has more common isoglosses with Bulgarian than Polish does.
Slovenian jaz cakam = Bg az cakam = Shtakavo-Shtokavski ja (not "jaZ"!) cEkam
Slovenian tukaj = Bg. tuk(a) = Sh-Sh tu = Russian tuT

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 14:00:56

BG: drveno vynglishte, PL: w?giel drzewny

dyrveno vyglishte (not vyNglishte), but it is always used in the plural form (pluralia tantum): dyrveni vyglishta.
Also it may be that the singular is not vyglishte (if it existed, in the past it probably did). For instance the plural of syn (dream) is synista, the plural of kraj (endside) is kraista but that doesn't mean there is a syniste or a kraiste.

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 13:47:28

"Although today's Bulgaria and Poland are much different (what can be attributed to Greek, than Turkish influence on BG and German/French/Italian influence on Poland), it makes much fun to hear same sounding words and sometimes even short sentences while being in BG."

Yes, there are some (few) common (identical) or similar isoglosses - wiara (Bg. vjara/v'ara/вяра), ?wiat (Bg. svjat/sv'at/свят). As far as I know the w in Polish "?wiat" and the v in Bg. svjat are pronounced "f", unlike the v in Shtakavo-Shtokavian svet/svijet and also in Russian words like where "v" comes after initial "s, t, k".
Also the first w in Polish S?awk?w and v in Bg. Slavkov are pronounced "f", unlike the v in Shtakavo-Shtokavian Slavkov(ic) and (?) also Russian komandirovka.

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 13:29:16

Albanian vat?r = fireplace, firesidevat?r; hearth; focus;

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 13:26:35

In fact it understand those "G?rale" themselves or Slovaks claim they are Polonized Slovaks, not Romanians.
"Vatra" in Romania means fireplace, in ShtAkavo-ShtOkavian ("Serbo-Croat(ian)") it simply means "fire" (oganj - the common Slavic word - is very infrequently used, as far as I could ascertain; also the rain = kisa)

Warfou - 13 Aug 2015 // 11:46:47

And here is a favourite one: ?opata (a shovel). Same in Polish, Bulgarian, Czech, Russian, Serbian, Croatian, Slovakian, Slovenian etc. but also Romanian. What regards Romanian - in Tatra mountains being a northern part of Carpathians we have a highlanders' minority called "G?rale". Their traditions are very well preserved. They speak specific dialect including many words similar to Romanian (Valah): bryndza, baca, skopek, watra etc. Their traditional costumes are also close.

Warfou - 13 Aug 2015 // 11:20:28

Similarities in Slavic languages are an interesting topic. For example, there are many similarities in Polish and Bulgarian words, although both nations live on opposite edges of the "Slavic world". Many words are almost the same in Polish and Bulgarian. Compare: BG "cya? sviat" PL "ca?y ?wiat" RU "ves' mir", BG "mlyako" PL "mleko", RU: "mo?oko", BG: drveno vynglishte, PL: w?giel drzewny, RU dereviannyi ugo? (sorry for not using kyrillic alphabet). Although today's Bulgaria and Poland are much different (what can be attributed to Greek, than Turkish influence on BG and German/French/Italian influence on Poland), it makes much fun to hear same sounding words and sometimes even short sentences while being in BG.

Warfou - 13 Aug 2015 // 11:02:07

As per the outlook, some Albanians recall ancient Greeks as they are known from sculptures. Many of them are tall, with curled hair and "hellenic nose". Similar type can be seen sometimes also in BG, and of course Greece itself. It may be result of a common Illyrian descent.

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 10:41:23

Some of the Bulgarians in Albania consider themselves Bulgarians, others "Macedonians", yet others "nashenci" ("nashinci"?)

GrueFski - 13 Aug 2015 // 10:40:05

What conclusion can one draw from this fact of Balkansprachbund (see how tolerant I am being towards Nazi and their language?)
Greek ?????? = girl, gal, lass, lassie
Albanian kopil = bastard; brat
Romanian copil = child in general and male child in particular
copil? = female child (girl)
but the original meaning seems to have been "bastard"; at least that's the meaning in the most archaic Romanian dialects (Maramures and Crisana ones). Interestingly enough in those were the dialects with "n => r" rhotacism (just like in the Albanian subdialects belonging to the Tosk dialect). Does that mean that Albanians are Thracians (they are Thracians, no doubt about that but where was their "Urheimat") originating in Northwestern Romania that have moved to present-day Albania???

DrFaust - 22 May 2010 // 13:50:42

"In Albania there are both Muslim and Christian Bulgarians ("Macedonians")"

There are neither Macedonians nor Bulgarians in Albania. The Savs in Albania call themselves 'Nashite' and are called 'Gorani' by the others. They are proud to have a different identity. And about 99% of them are Muslims.

cvetkoviq - 22 May 2010 // 04:45:09

Sure they have been abandoned
In Albania there are both Muslim and Christian Bulgarians ("Macedonians")

DrFaust - 18 May 2010 // 07:54:59


"It's very funny that FYROM government has abandoned Albania "Macedonians" completely for fear of FYROM Albanians and also because Albania FYROMians are very few"

No, you are very funny, not the Macedonioan government.

The people to which you are referring are Muslim Slavs. They call themselves 'Nashite', and are referred by others as 'Gorani'. They have clearly a very different identity from Macedonians, and their language is closer to standard Bulgarian than Macedonian. And practically they have a choice to apply for a second passport (Macedonian or Bulgarian). And guess what, they all apply for a Bulgarian one. Remember, Bulgaria is a EU member, Macedonioa is not, LOL.

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