August 14, 1868|
Bogomila, Ottoman Empire
|Died||January 1, 1941
Petar Pop-Arsov (1868, Bogomila, present day Čaška Municipality, Republic of Macedonia - 1941, Sofia, Bulgaria) was a Bulgarian revolutionary from Macedonia, one of the founders of "The Committee for Obtaining the Political Rights Given to Macedonia by the Congress of Berlin" from which, as Petar Poparsov says in his writings, later developed the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO),  known prior to 1902 as Bulgarian Macedonian-Adrianople Revolutionary Committees (BMARC). His last name is sometimes rendered 'Poparsov' or 'Pop Arsov'. Scholars consider him a Bulgarian while in the Republic of Macedonia he is regarded as an ethnic Macedonian.
He was born in 1868 in the village Bogomila, near Veles, in a priest family, son of Arso, a priest, which with his brother, Andrej Pop-Arsov, named his family as Pop-Arsovi in their fathers name. He was one of the leaders of the student protest in the Bulgarian Men's High School of Thessaloniki in 1887/1888 where the main objective was to replace the East Bulgarian dialect with a Macedonian dialect in the lecturing. As a consequence, he was expelled along with 38 other students. He managed to enroll in the philology studies program at Belgrade University in 1888, but because his resistance to Serbianisation, he was once more evicted in 1890.
Young Macedonian Literary Society
In 1891 he is one of the founders of Young Macedonian Literary Society in Sofia and its magazine Loza (The Vine). The purpose of the society was twofold: the official one was primarily scholarly and literary. One of the purposes of the magazine of Young Macedonian Literary Society was to defend the idea the dialects from Macedonia to be more represented in Bulgarian literature language. The articles where historical, cultural and ethnographic. The authors of this magazine clearly considered them as Macedonian Bulgarians, but the Bulgarian government suspected them of the lack of loyalty and some separatism and the magazine was promptly banned by the Bulgarian authorities after several issues.
The best proof of the aims and tasks of the Young Macedonian Literary Society was provided during the following year when its members became either founders of or active participants in "The Committee for Obtaining the Political Rights Given to Macedonia by the Congress of Berlin" from which, as Petar Poparsov says, there later developed IMARO. These were the Macedonian intellectuals who were "the witnesses to the hellish condition of Macedonia and took account of the geographical, ethnographic, economic and other characteristics of the country". From 1896-7 he works in Štip as a Bulgarian teacher and president of regional IMARO section. In 1897 he was arrested by Ottoman authorities on charges of inciting rebellion, and sentenced to 101 years in prison. He was pardoned in August 1902. After his release he encountered changed political climate in Macedonia. He remained passive during the Ilinden-Preobrazhenie Uprising of 1903. However, after the failure of the uprising, he was admitted to the Central Committee of IMARO. At the Rila Congress in November 1905, he was elected in the representative body of IMARO. He championed the idea of Macedonian autonomy. During the First Balkan War he and Dimitrija Čupovski organized an all-Macedonian congress that authorized them to represent the Macedonian Question in the Peace Conference. After the Balkan Wars he moved to Bulgaria. Here he married to Hrisanta Nasteva, a former teacher of Bulgarian girls school at Thessaloniki. They settled in Kostenets in 1914 where he continuous taught from 1914 to 1929. He worked not only as a teacher but also a director to his retirement. In 1920 he described the serbianization of Macedonian Bulgarians as one of tee most powerful factors for the creation of IMRO. He died after brief illness in Sofia in 1941.
- Стамболовщината въ Македония и нейнитѣ прѣдставители - Петъръ Попъ Арсовъ
- IMRO is the most commonly used name for the organization in which Petar Poparsov participated, although it is certain that in some his active days, the organization had a different name. What that name was is a matter of considerable dispute between historians from Bulgaria and the Republic of Macedonia. According to Bulgarian historians the name of the organization from 1896 to 1902 was Bulgarian Macedonian-Adrianople Revolutionary Committees (BMARC), and it was meant only for Bulgarians, while according to ethic Macedonian historians the name of the organization was Secret Macedonian-Adrianople Revolutionary Organization (SMARO) from 1896 to 1905, and it was meant for all ethnic Macedonians. See Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization for more details.
- Fikret Adanir – Die Makedonische Frage, Wiessbaden 1979
- Константин Пандев (“Национално-освободителното движение в Македония и Одринско” на София 1979, с. 129-130)
- We, the people: politics of national peculiarity in Southeastern Europe, Автор Diana Mishkova, Издател Central European University Press, 2009, ISBN 963-9776-28-9, стр. 116.
- The Macedonian question: Britain and the southern Balkans : 1939-1949, Автор Dimitris Livanios, Издател Oxford University Press US, 2008, ISBN 0-19-923768-9, стр. 18.
- Preparation for a revolution: the Young Turks, 1902-1908, Автор M. Şükrü Hanioğlu, Издател Oxford University Press US, 2001, ISBN 0-19-513463-X, стр. 246-247.
- Грага за историjата на македонскиот народ од Архивот на Србиjа. т. ІV, кн. ІІІ (1888-1889). Београд, 1987 и Т. V, кн. І (1890). Београд, 1988.
- Ристовский, Блаже. Димитрий Чуповский и македонское национальное сознание, ОАО Издательство „Радуга“, Москва, 1999, с. 76.
- Бруталната политика на посърбяване, която отричаше всяко човешко достойнство у македонските българи и жестоко нараняваше националното им чувство - създаде в душата на тоя милионен български народ една трагедия, която ставаше още по-страшна пред вид на това, че посърбяването означаваше не само денационализиране, ами и повръщане на македонските българи под ведомството на Гръцката патриаршия, против която бяха водили дългогодишна кървава борба и едва се бяха изкопчили от вампирските ѝ нокти. Лозунгът беше: далече от България! Не за това, че тя беше виновница за положението в Македония, ами защото всяко подозрение за нейна намеса можеше да напакости и ней, и на делото, което трябваше да си запази своя чисто вътрешен македонски характер. Върху тези ясни и точно определени основи се образува първия таен "Комитет за придобиване политическите права на Македония, дадени ѝ от Берлинския договор", от който сетне се разви тъй наречената Вътрешна М. Р. Организация..., в "Бюлетин на Временното представителство на обединената бивша Вътрешна македонска революционна организация", брой №8 от 19 юли 1919, стр. 2-3.
- A request made by Peter Poparsov's mother to Bulgarian authorities to assist the release of her son from Ottoman prison