111 Rebellions All the Way Down

Updated: Apr 27

As the Bulgarian National Revival ramps up with more and more books being published, rebellions break out throughout the Balkans. Mahmud's reforms trigger elites angry about their status being threatened and Balkan Christians angry the reforms are not being implemented. Meanwhile, Sultan Mahmud II is feeling confident that his reformed military can take on the Egyptians.


Major Characters in this Episode

Sultan Mahmut II

Mohammad Ali

Georgi Mamarchev

Vasil Aprilov

Neofit Rilski

Miloš Obrenović

Velcho Atanasov

Yordan Kisyov

Elias Riggs

Varban Panov

Incho Andreev

Krustyo Neshen

Timeline for this Episode

  • 1833, Rila Monastery destroyed by fire before being reconstructed between 1834 and 1862

  • 1833, April-may rebellions in Vidin, Belogradchik, and Berkovishte

  • 1833, 4 Bulgarian books are printed, the next year another 2 are published

  • 1834, August 6th, the Sublime porte publishes a law to organize a territorial army where each Sanjak must muster a 1,400 soldier battalion. They also publish an order prohibiting the export of grain from northern Bulgaria, requesting 550,000 bushels of wheat for government warehouses. In 1837 the government allowed surplus wheat to be exported.

  • 1834-1835 Syrian Revolt

  • 1835, the Welch Plot organized an uprising in Bulgaria. It’s discovered by the Ottomans and its leaders are arrested. They were hung in Tarnovo on April 13th. Other leaders were brutally tortured.

  • 1835, Vasil Aprilov opens a school in Gabrovo, choosing Neofit Rilski as a teacher

  • 1835, Neofit Rilski issued his Bolgarska gramatika

  • 1835, Textile factory opens in Sliven

  • 1835, Serbia adopts a constitution following a rebellion

  • 1836, May, rebellions in Pirot, Belogradchik, and Berkovitsa as well as Albania and Bosnia

  • 1837, November 14th: uprising in Chiprovtsi

  • 1838, May, the Ottoman government fixes salaries of government officials in order to combat corruption and implements legislative councils

  • 1838, Muhammad Ali threatens to declare independence, is attacked by and defeats the Ottomans only to be defeated in turn by a European coalition. He is stripped of all territories except Egypt itself

  • 1838, Ottomans sign a trade treaty with France

  • 1839, Death of Mahmut II



Neofit Rilski's book on Bulgarian grammar

Neofit Rilski's translation of the New Testament

Neofit Rilski

American missionary Elias Riggs, who helped Neofit Rilski translate the New Testament

Vasil Aprilov, who opened the first Bulgarian school

Velcho Atanasov, who led an anti-Ottoman rebellion and intended to declare himself Knyaz of Bulgaria

The Rila Monastery, showing portions reconstructed after the 1833 fire

Artwork in the Rila Monastery painted after the 1833 fire

Sultan Mahmud II in his European style dress following clothing reforms