Gyorche Petrov

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Gyorche Petrov
Gjorche Petrov.jpg
Born April 2, 1865
Varoš, Ottoman Empire
Died June 28, 1921 (1921-06-29) (aged 56)
Sofia, Bulgaria
Nationality Ottoman/Bulgarian

Gyorche Petrov Nikolov [1](Macedonian: About this sound Ѓорче Петров ; Bulgarian: Гьорче Петров), born Georgi Petrov Nikolov (April 2, 1865 – June 28, 1921), was a Bulgarian revolutionary, one of the leaders of the Macedonian-Adrianople revolutionary movement.[2][3][4] In the Republic of Macedonia he is considered an ethnic Macedonian.


Born in Prilep, Ottoman Empire, today, Republic of Macedonia), he studied at the Bulgarian Exarchate's school in Prilep and the Bulgarian Men's High School of Thessaloniki. Later he attended the Gymnazium in Plovdiv, capital of the recently created Eastern Rumelia. Here he joined the Bulgarian Secret Central Revolutionary Committee founded in 1885. The original purpose of the committee was to gain autonomy for the region of Macedonia (then called Western Rumelia), but it played an important role in the organization of the Unification of Bulgaria and Eastern Rumelia. Afterwards, Petrov worked as a Bulgarian Exarchate's teacher in various towns of Macedonia. He took part in the revolutionary campaign in Macedonia as well as in the Thessaloniki Congress of the Bulgarian Macedonian-Adrianople Revolutionary Committees (BMARC) in 1896.[5][6] He was among the authors of the organization's new charter and rules, which he co-wrote with Gotse Delchev.[7]

Gjorche Petrov was the representative of the Foreign Committee of the BMARC/IMARO in Sofia in 1897-1901. He did not approve of the ultimately outbreak of the Uprising on Ilinden, 2 August 1903, but he participated leading a squad.[8] After the unsuccessful uprising Petrov continued his participation in IMARO. The failure of the Uprising reignited the rivalries between the varying factions of the Macedonian revolutionary movement. The left-wing faction including Petrov, opposed Bulgarian nationalism but the Centralist's faction of the IMARO, drifted more and more towards it. Petrov was again included in the Emigrant representation in Sofia in 1905-1908. After the Young Turks Revolution of 1908, Petrov together with writer Anton Strashimirov edited the "Kulturno Edinstvo" magazine ("Cultural Unity"), published in Thessaloniki (Solun).[9] In 1911 a new Central Committee of IMARO was formed and the Centralists faction gained full control over the Organization.

During the Balkan wars, Gyorche Petrov was a volunteer in the 5th company of Macedonian-Adrianopolitan Volunteer Corps.[10] He was President of the Regular Regional Committee in Bitola for some time during the First World War and Bulgarian administration in Vardar Macedonia and afterwards became mayor of Drama.[11] At the end of the war he was one of the initiators of the formation of a new leftist organization called Provisional representation of the former United Internal Revolutionary Organization, and this government set a task of defending the positions of the Bulgarians in Macedonia at the Paris Peace Conference (1919–1920).

He kept close ties with the new government of Bulgarian Agrarian National Union (BANU), especially with minister Aleksandar Dimitrov and some other prominent Agrarian leaders. BANU rejected territorial expansion and aimed at forming a Balkan federation of agrarian states, a policy which began with a détente with Yugoslavia. As result Petrov became a Chief of the Bulgarian Refugees Agency by the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Then Petrov had to deal with the problem of Bulgarian refugees who had to leave Yugoslavia and Greece, thus incurring IMRO Centralist faction leaders' hatred upon himself.[12] One of the reasons for this was the open struggle of the IMRO with the government of the BANU, and on the other hand, the interplay between the various refugees organizations and the attempt of IMRO to acquire them.

He was eventually killed by an IMRO-assassin in June 1921 in Sofia. The assassination of Gyorche Petrov complicated relations between IMRO and Bulgarian government and produced significant dissensions in the Macedonian movement.[13]

To honor his name a suburb of Skopje was named Gjorče Petrov, or usually shortly referred only as Gjorče. The suburb is one of the ten municipalities of Skopje, the capital of the Republic of Macedonia.



  1. ^ Alternatively spelled Gjorche Petrov
  2. ^ Region, Regional Identity and Regionalism in Southeastern Europe, Klaus Roth, Ulf Brunnbauer, LIT Verlag Münster, 2009, ISBN 3-8258-1387-8, p. 135.
  3. ^ Information from a book by Gyorche Petrov on the ethnic composition of the population in Macedonia:The Macedonian population consists of Bulgarians, Turks, Albanians, Wallachians, Jews The total number of the population and that of each nationality cannot be defined exactly as there are no statistics... Bulgarians constitute the bulk of the population in the vilayet I am describing. In spite of all distortions in the official statistics, they again figure as more than half of the population. I could not personally collect any data about the number of the population, that is why I am not quoting figures. I made a description of the Bulgarian population in the section on Topography, that is why it is not necessary to repeat the same again or go into detail... (G. Petrov, Materials on the Study of Macedonia), Sofia, 1896, pp. 724-725, 731; the original is in Bulgarian. Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of History, Bulgarian Language Institute, Macedonia. Documents and materials, Sofia 1978.Document # 40.
  4. ^ In his memoirs, Gjorche Petrov calls himself Bulgarian: Gjorche Petrov's memoirs page 90: "Щомъ разбраха, че съмъ българинъ и пр." (After they found out I was a Bulgarian, etc.) Спомени на Гьорчо Петровъ, Съобщава Любомиръ Милетичъ (Издава "Македонскиятъ Наученъ Институтъ", София. — Печатница П. Глушковъ. — 1927) (Bg).
  5. ^ Aleksieva, Margarita (1972). Some Great Bulgarians. Sofia Press. p. 157. 
  6. ^ Ashton, Oswald; Wentworth Dilke; Margaret S. Dilke (1984). Recollections of the National Liberation Struggles in Macedonia. Mosaic Publications. p. 13. 
  7. ^ Detrez, Raymond (1997). Historical Dictionary of Bulgaria. Scarecrow Press. p. 106. ISBN 0-8108-3177-5. 
  8. ^ Gjorche Petrov's memoirs page 167-8
  9. ^ Генов, Георги. Беломорска Македония 1908 - 1916, Торонто, 2006, стр. 44.
  10. ^ Александър Гребенаров. 86 години от смъртта на Гьорче Петров
  11. ^ Николов, Борис Й. Вътрешна Македоно-Одринска революционна организация. Войводи и ръководители. биографично-библиографски справочник. София 2001, с. 128 (Nikolov, Boris. Internal Macedonian-Adrianople Organization. Voivodes and Leaders. Biographical and Bibliographical Reference Book. Sofia 2001, p. 128).
  12. ^ Василев, Васил. Правителството на БЗНС, ВМРО и българо-югославските отношения, София 1991, с.77(Vasilev, Vasil. The Government of BANU, IMRO and the Bulgarian-Yugoslav relations, Sofia 1991, p. 77)
  13. ^ Василев, Васил. Правителството на БЗНС, ВМРО и българо-югославските отношения, София 1991, с. 101-104. (Vasilev, Vasil. The Government of BANU, IMRO and the Bulgarian-Yugoslav relations, Sofia 1991, p. 101-104)

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