Strandzha Commune

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Strandzha Commune

Странджанска комуна
Странджанска република
Малкотърновска република
StatusIndependent Republic
CapitalCentered around Malko Tarnovo
Historical eraIlinden–Preobrazhenie Uprising
• Established
18 August 1903
• Disestablished
8 September 1903
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
Today part of Bulgaria

The Strandzha Commune or Strandzha Republic[1] was a short-lived anarchist commune in Bulgaria. proclaimed during the Preobrazhenie Uprising in 1903 by Internal Macedonian Adrianople Revolutionary Organization rebels in Strandzha, in the Adrianople Vilayet of the Ottoman Empire.


By 1903, the anarchist Mihail Gerdzhikov became a guerrilla commander in the Internal Macedonian Adrianople Revolutionary Organisation's armed wing in Thrace, the Mortal Combat Body which helped stage a revolt against the Ottomans in Adrianople Vilayet. In the Ilinden–Preobrazhenie Uprising Gerdzhikov's forces about 2,000 strong, facing a Turkish garrison of 10,000 well-armed troops, managed to establish a liberated zone in the Strandzha Mountains, centered in Vasiliko.

The economy of the Strandzha Commune was based on anarcho-communist principles. Most of the labor force was composed of women, who worked in the farms as men became guerilla fighters. The Turkish government was surprised by the uprising, taking extraordinary military measures to suppress it. The Ottomans managed to destroy the Strandzha Republic, committing atrocities against the rebel forces and the local population.

See also[edit]



  • Khadzhiev, Georgi (1992). "The Transfiguration Uprising and the 'Strandzha Commune': The First Libertarian Commune in Bulgaria". Nat︠s︡ionalnoto osvobozhdenie i bezvlastnii︠a︡t federalizŭm [National Liberation and Libertarian Federalism] (in Bulgarian). Translated by Firth, Will. Sofia: Artizdat-5. pp. 99–148. OCLC 27030696.

Coordinates: 42°10′15.16″N 27°51′4.58″E / 42.1708778°N 27.8512722°E / 42.1708778; 27.8512722