Georgi Pulevski

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Gjorgjija Pulevski)
Jump to: navigation, search
Georgi Pulevski
Georgi Pulevski.jpg
Born 1817
Galičnik, Ottoman Empire (present-day Republic of Macedonia)
Died February 13, 1893(1893-02-13) (aged 76)
Sofia, Bulgaria
Occupation Writer and revolutionary

Georgi Pulevski or Gjorgji Pulevski (Macedonian: Ѓорѓи Пулевски or Ѓорѓија Пулевски, Bulgarian: Георги Пулевски; 1817–1895) was a writer and revolutionary from Galičnik, today in the Republic of Macedonia, known today as the first author to express publicly the idea of a Macedonian nation distinct from Bulgarians, as well as a separate Macedonian language.[1] Pulevski was born in 1817 in Galičnik, then under the rule of the Ottoman Empire, and died in 1895 in Sofia, Principality of Bulgaria. Trained as a stonemason, he became a self-taught writer in matters relating to Macedonian language and culture. In Bulgaria he is regarded a Bulgarian and early adherent to Macedonism.[2][3]


The "A Dictionary of Three languages" (1875).

In 1875, he published in Belgrade a book called Dictionary of Three Languages (Rečnik od tri jezika, Речник од три језика). It was a conversational phrasebook composed in "question-and-answer" style in three parallel columns, in Macedonian Slavic, Albanian and Turkish, all three spelled in Cyrillic. Pulevski chose to write in the local Macedonian Slavic rather than the Bulgarian standard based on eastern Tarnovo dialects. His language was an attempt at creating a supra-dialectal Macedonian norm, but with a bias towards his own native local Galičnik dialect [1] The text of the Rečnik contains programmatic statements where Pulevski argues for an independent Macedonian nation and language.[1]

What do we call a nation? – People who are of the same origin and who speak the same words and who live and make friends of each other, who have the same customs and songs and entertainment are what we call a nation, and the place where that people lives is called the people's country. Thus the Macedonians also are a nation and the place which is theirs is called Macedonia.[4]

Pulevski statue in Skopje

His next published works were a revolutionary poem, Samovila Makedonska ('A Macedonian Fairy') published in 1878,[5] and a Macedonian Song Book in two volumes, published in 1879 in Belgrade, which contained both folk songs collected by Pulevski and some original poems by himself.

In 1880, Pulevski published Slavjano-naseljenski makedonska slognica rečovska ('Grammar of the language of the Macedonian Slavic population'), a work that is today known as the first attempt at a grammar of Macedonian. In it, Pulevski systematically contrasted his language, which he called našinski ("our language") or slavjano-makedonski ("Slavic-Macedonian") with both Serbian and Bulgarian.[6] All records of this book were lost during the first half of 20th century and only discovered again in the 1950s in Sofia. Owing to the writer's lack of formal training as a grammarian and dialectologist, it is today considered of limited descriptive value; however, it has been characterised as "seminal in its signaling of ethnic and linguistic consciousness but not sufficiently elaborated to serve as a codification",[7] In 1892, Pulevski completed the first Slavjanomakedonska opšta istorija (General History of the Macedonian Slavs), a large manuscript with over 1700 pages. In his last work: “Jazitshnica, soderzsayushtaja starobolgarski ezik, uredena em izpravlena da se uchat bolgarski i makedonski sinove i kerki"; ('Grammar, containing Old Bulgarian language, arranged and corrected to be taught to Bulgarian and Macedonian sons and daughters'), he considered the Macedonian dialects to be old Bulgarian and the differences between the two purely geographical.[8]

Military action[edit]

In 1862, Pulevski fought as a member of the Bulgarian Legion against an Ottoman siege at Belgrade. He participated also in the Serbo-Turkish war of 1876. Later, during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878, which led to the of Liberation of Bulgaria, he was "vojvod" of a unit of Bulgarian volunteers,[9] taking part in the Battle of Shipka Pass. After the war, he went to live in the newly liberated Bulgarian capital Sofia. He also participated as volunteer in the Kresna-Razlog Uprising, which aimed at unification of Bulgaria with Macedonia.[10] In a request to the Bulgarian Parliament later he expressed his regret about the failure of this unification.[11] Pulevski finally received a government pension in recognition of his service as a Bulgarian volunteer, until his death in 1895.


The definition of the ethnic Macedonian identity arose from the writings of Georgi Pulevski, who identified the existence of a distinct modern "Slavic Macedonian" language and nation.[12] Pulevski summarized the folk histories of the Slavic Macedonian people and concluded that the Slavic Macedonians were descendants of the Ancient Macedonians. This opinion was based on the claim that the ancient Macedonian language had Slavic components in it, and thus, the ancient Macedonians were Slavic, and that Slav Macedonians were descendants of them.[13] However his Macedonian self-identification was ambiguous. Pulevski viewed Macedonian identity as being a regional phenomenon, similar to Herzegovinians and Thracians. He also described himself sometimes as a "Serbian patriot",[14] but he also viewed his ethnic designation as "Bulgarian from the village of Galicnik".[15][16] Pulevski's different identifications actually revealed the absence of a clear ethnic identity among part of the local Slavic population at that time.

List of works[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Victor A. Friedman: Macedonian language and nationalism during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Balcanistica 2 (1975): 83-98. [1]
  2. ^ Военна история на българите от древността до наши дни, Том 5 от История на Българите, Автор Георги Бакалов, Издател TRUD Publishers, 2007, ISBN 954-621-235-0, стр. 335.
  3. ^ Македонизмът и съпротивата на Македония срещу него, Коста Църнушанов, Унив. изд. "Св. Климент Охридски", София, 1992, стр. 40-42.
  4. ^ Rečnik od tri jezika, p. 48f.
  5. ^ Macedonian Academy of Arts and Sciences
  6. ^ Published Sofia, 1880. See Victor A. Friedman (1975: 89)
  7. ^ Victor A. Friedman, Romani standardization in Macedonia. In: Y. Matras (ed.) Romani in Contact, Amsterdam: Benjamins 1995, 177-189. Page 178.
  8. ^ Македонизмът и съпротивата на Македония срещу него. Коста Църнушанов, Унив. изд. "Св. Климент Охридски", София, 1992, стр 41-42. Macedonism and Macedonia's Resistance against it. Sofia, St. Kl. Ohridski, University Piblishing House, Kosta Tsarnushanov, 1992, p. 41-42.
  9. ^ Болгарское ополчение и земское воиску (in Russian). Санкт-Петербург. 1904. pp. 56–59. 
  10. ^ H. Poulton, Who Are the Macedonians?, p. 49. ISBN 1-85065-534-0
  11. ^ ЦДпА, София, ф. 708, оп. 1, арх. ед. 397, л. 5-6. и сл.
  12. ^ Roumen Daskalov and Tschavdar Marinov. Entangled Histories of the Balkans: Volume One: National Ideologies and Language Policies. BRILL, 2013, p. 300.
  13. ^ Roumen Daskalov and Tschavdar Marinov. Entangled Histories of the Balkans: Volume One: National Ideologies and Language Policies. BRILL, 2013, p. 316.
  14. ^ Roumen Daskalov and Tschavdar Marinov. Entangled Histories of the Balkans: Volume One: National Ideologies and Language Policies. BRILL, 2013, p. 316.
  15. ^ Contested Ethnic Identity: The Case of Macedonian Immigrants in Toronto, 1900-1996, Peter Lang, 2010, ISBN 3034301960, p. 67.
  16. ^ Блаже Ристовски, “Портрети и процеси од македонската литературна и национална историја”, том 1, Скопје: Култура, 1989 г., стр. 281, 283, 28.

External links[edit]