113 The Spring of Nations

After the Great Powers of Europe spend the post-Napoleonic decades suppressing revolutionary movements in Ottoman lands, they finally face a revolution of their own. Meanwhile, Bulgarians engage in a ferocious political battle with the Greek-dominated Patriarchate and continue the steady work of building the Bulgarian Revival. With Europe rising up and demanding more democratic nation states, what will become of Bulgaria's demand for the same?


Major Characters in this Episode

Sultan Abdulmejid I

Mohammad Ali

Georgi Rakovski

Vasil Aprilov

Neofit Bozveli

Ilarion Makariopolski

Hristaki Pavlovich

Botyo Petkov

Vasil Ivanov Kunchev

Ivan Bogorov

Alexander Exarch

Abbas I of Egypt

Josip Jelačić

Emperor Franz Joseph

Lajos Kossuth

Timeline for this Episode

  • 1844, Rrakovski is imprisoned, he’s exonerated by an Ottoman court in October. But the Patriarchate demands they remain in jail.

  • 1844, Hristaki Pavlovich publishes a book about the origins of the Bulgarians

  • 1844 Hristo Botev’s father Botyo Petkov settles as a teacher in Kalofer

  • 1844, An Ottoman flag and anthem are adopted

  • 1844, the first Ottoman census was conducted, only counting men. Formal IDs are also introduced

  • 1844, Neofit Bozveli left his exile and returned to Constantiople to work with Ilarion Makariopolski advocating for an independent Bulgarian church.

  • 1845, Neofit Bozveli is told that the Porte is ready to fulfill the Bulgarian demands. A committee is formed with representatives of all the major Bulgarian municipalities to finalize the text.

  • 1845 April, representatives go to Constantinople but mostly don’t dare to oppose the Patriarchate, Tarnovo and Plovdiv actively side with them. Only Shumen and Ruse side with Bozveli.

  • 1845 June, Neofit Bozveli and Ilarion Makariopolski are empowered to represent the Bulgarian group in Constantinople. Bozveli then presents new arguments to the Porte about new Bulgarian desires in the church dispute. For the first time they present the idea for fixed salaries for Patriarchate officials to help combat corruption.

  • 1845, Neofit Bozveli and Ilarion Makariopolski were arrested and exiled to Mt. Athos on request of the Patriarchate.

  • 1845, 8 year old Vassil Levski begins school in Karlovo

  • 1845, 12 books and 1 magazine are published

  • 1846 February, a huge fire destroys a wealthy neighborhood in Plovdiv

  • 1846, Ivan Bogorov printed the first issue of the Bulgarian newspaper “Bulgarian Eagle” in Leipzig. It aims to teach Bulgarians about their history and connections to the wider Slavic and European world.

  • 1846, The Bulgarian Metropolitan of Tarnovo is fired and replaced with a Greek

  • 1846, Two programs are issued to Tsar Nicholas I by Alexander Exarch describing how Russia can assist in the development of Bulgarian Education. The Russian government gives 10,000 Rubles per year for Bulgarian schools in the Ottoman Empire.

  • 1847, February, Rakovski is released from prison and settles in Constantinople.

  • 1847, Vassil Aprilov died.

  • 1847, Hristo Botev was born.

  • 1847, Alexander Exarch moved to Constantinople and works to promote Bulgarian education

  • 1848, the first BG newspaper was published in Constantinople. It’s goal was firstly to describe what the government was doing, then external political news. They want to present objective news and not be overly political. Many famous Bulgarians write for it.

  • 1848, Neofit Bozveli dies in Athos. Hristaki Pavlovich dies in Svishtov.

  • 1848, Fall, the Bulgarian Neofit Vyzantios is returned to his position in Tarnovo

  • 1848, Muhammad Ali of Egypt finally dies at 80

  • End of 1848, organizers of the Braila rebellion gather in Belgrade to plan another uprising

  • 1848, revolution sweeps Europe, the Russians and Ottomans cooperate to occupy the Principalities


The cover of "Bulgarian Eagle," the first Bulgarian newspaper, published in Leipzig

The Ottoman flag officially adopted in 1844

A map of the various revolutions of 1848

Barricades of the revolutionaries in Vienna

Hungarian revolutionaries fighting in Pest

Romanian national revolutionaries