137 The Congress of Berlin

After the San Stefano treaty provoked outrage in the capitals of Europe and a series of secret agreements for adjusting it were concluded, it was finally time for the Great Powers to meet in Berlin and lay out the final conclusion of the Russo-Turkish War. The results will finally create a semi-independent Bulgarian state but, more importantly, will lay the groundwork for the bloody first decades of the 20th century.




Major Characters in this Episode

Alexander Gorchakov

Count Ignatieff

Benjamin Disraeli

Otto Von Bismarck


Timeline for this Episode

  • Late February 1878, Serbian authorities arrest 48 notable Bulgarians in Pirot.

  • 31st March 1878, A Bulgarian army is established along with a training school in Plovdiv.

  • March 1878, the Provisional Russian Administration in Bulgaria introduces tickets to allow Bulgarians to settle in abandoned Muslim houses and to work their lands.

  • March-April 1878, Secret negotiations are conducted between the Russians and Austro-Hungarians to amend the San Stefano treaty.

  • April 5th 1878, Final assembly of the synod of the Bulgarian Exarchy in Constantinople.

  • April 1878, the Provisional Russian Administration in Bulgaria is established

  • May 8th 1878, Knyaz Alexander Dondukov Korsakov arrives in Plovdiv and begins administering Bulgaria.

  • 20th May 1878, 21 Bulgarian municipalities in Macedonia send a plea to the Russian administration to be included in the Bulgarian kingdom.

  • 25th May 1878, A secret agreement is made between England and Austria-Hungary to revise the San Stefano treaty.

  • May 1878, Secret negotiations are conducted in London between England and Russia to create a smaller and divided Bulgaria.

  • June 1-July 1st1878, Congress of Berlin.

  • June 1st 1878, On the order of Dondukov, Exarch Josif I arrives in Plovidv

  • June 4th 1878, Britain and the Ottomans sign the agreement in Berlin, and agree to receive Cyprus in exchange for support.

  • June 5th 1878, By order of the vice-governor of Vidin Petko Karavelov, Russian armies take the Serbian occupied portions of Kulata and Vidin.


A painting of the Congress of Berlin
A painting of the Congress of Berlin

A lithograph portraying divided Bulgaria after the Treaty of Berlin
A lithograph portraying divided Bulgaria after the Treaty of Berlin

The Balkans after the Treaty of Berlin
The Balkans after the Treaty of Berlin

Bulgaria before and after San Stefano
Bulgaria before and after San Stefano

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