The first formation of a Bulgarian state dates back to the second half of the seventh century, by the work of Isperich, son of Kubrat. The Bulgarians, a population of Mongolian origin, abandoned the Volga plain and managed to settle between the Danube and the Balkans. Due to its geographical position, between Europe and Asia, Bulgaria has been the meeting point between East and West since ancient times. Through its territory passed the main roads to Byzantium, the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire. See Countryaah for population and country facts about Bulgaria.
Relations between Bulgaria and this Empire were now hostile, now friendly; however, in the 10th century the country, under the kings Krum, Boris I and Simeone, became a powerful state, extended over a large part of the eastern and southern Balkan Peninsula: Thrace, Macedonia and Albania.
Around 870 Boris, king of the Bulgarians, converted to the Orthodox religion, followed by his people. With Simeone, son of Boris, the Bulgarian kingdom also included Serbia and Bosnia. In 931 Serbia broke away from Bulgaria and formed a state in itself. Macedonia also became independent in 963.
Between the 10th and 11th centuries, the decline of the country began, when the Byzantine emperor Basil II, nicknamed “Bulgaroctono”, that is, exterminator of the Bulgarians, occupied Bulgaria by reintegrating the domains of the Eastern Empire.
After various events, in 1204 the Bulgarian feudal lord Kalojan, after having reported great victories over the Byzantines and the Serbs, made himself proclaimed king of the Bulgarians.
Towards the end of the 14th century, Bulgaria fell under the rule of the Ottoman Turks, as did all the other states of the Balkan Peninsula.
His resurrection began only in the second half of the 19th century; in 1878 it was erected in Principality, following the Treaty of Berlin, but without Macedonia and some districts around Constantinople, returned to Turkey. In 1885 Rumelia joined.
In 1908 Prince Ferdinand of Saxony proclaimed Bulgaria’s independence and assumed the title of Czar of the Bulgarians. In 1912/13 he participated in the alliance and war of the Balkan states (Greece, Montenegro, Serbia) against Turkey and conquered Adrianople; then he came to war with his allies, which took advantage of Turkey to take back the city.
In the Bucharest peace of 1913, Bulgaria, beaten by the former allies for the intervention of Romania, had to renounce the Dobruja and the territories previously conquered. He took them up again in 1915/16 by allying himself with Germany and Austria and occupying Serbia, Albania and Romania. But in October 1918 it collapsed with the central empires and Tsar Ferdinand had to abdicate in favor of his son Boris III. The Peace of Neuilly fixed more narrow borders to Bulgaria than those of 1913 with the loss of the outlet on the Aegean Sea.
From 1918 to 1923 the government of Bulgaria ran the Stambulisky Agricultural Socialist Party, which was overthrown by the Democrats of Zankof. From 1926 Bulgaria enjoyed a period of calm, which was influenced by Italy’s friendship.
In 1930 Boris III married Giovanna di Savoia, and although it was of Orthodox religion, the wedding took place with a Catholic rite in the Church of San Francesco in Assisi; the ceremony was then repeated in the Cathedral of Sofia.
Passionate about mechanics, Boris often enjoyed driving railway locomotives. However, he was also passionate about entomology and it was thanks to him that the important Museum of Natural History was built in Sofia.
He had two children: Maria Luisa born in 1933 and Simeone, prince of Tirnovo, born in 1937, who later succeeded him on the throne with the name of Simeone II.
In 1934 King Boris III established a dictatorial government by abolishing all political parties. In 1937 he made a pact of friendship with Yugoslavia and obtained the abolition of the military restrictions imposed by the Treaty of Neuilly, by the Small Understanding gathered in Thessaloniki on July 31, 1938; in 1939 he entered into a pact of friendship with Turkey; in 1940 he peacefully obtained from Romania the demotion of southern Dobrujah and on 1 March 1941 he joined the Tripartite Pact by annexing the territories of Zaribrod and Pirot, part of Macedonia and western Thrace, with the islands Thassos and Samothrace.
In 1945, defeated, it was invaded by Russian troops. After the Second World War, the National Assembly proclaimed the People’s Republic on September 15, 1946. On May 10, 1947, the Peace Treaty was signed in Paris. On December 4 of the same year the Constitution was approved which admitted only one Chamber, and on the following 12 the new government was formed.
The President of the Presidium, Dr. Mincho Neichev entrusted the mandate to Georgi Dimitrov who formed it with 14 communists, 5 agrarian, 2 socialists and 2 from the Zvenò party.
An alliance pact with Albania was signed on December 16, 1947 and parties were abolished on February 4, 1948. Dimitrov founded the one-party government and signed the Treaty of Friendship and Military Collaboration with the Soviet Union for twenty years. Bulgaria thus entered the Soviet Union’s system of satellite states.
After the guerrilla failure of the Greek communist partisans, clandestinely helped by Bulgaria, and especially after Stalin’s death, relations with Greece, Turkey and Yugoslavia normalized.
The capital Sofia changed its name three times. In the first century after Christ it was called Serdica; at the time of the Byzantine Empire it was called Triaditza and after the 14th century it had its current name.