Bulgaria: 146 years since the April Uprising

20.04.2022 / 13:11

On April 20, 1876, the April Uprising broke out in Koprivshtitsa, thanks to which Bulgaria appeared on the map of Europe.

The decision to launch the uprising was taken by the Giurgiu Revolutionary Committee, the Bulgarian lands were divided into 5 revolutionary districts - the first Tarnovo, the second Sliven, the third Vratsa, the fourth Plovdiv and the fifth Sofia.

The preparation was only a few months, which explains its failure on the battlefield. In fact, the uprising broke out en masse mostly in the first Tarnovo district, where one of its apostles was the future Prime Minister of Bulgaria Stefan Stambolov, and in the fourth Plovdiv district with the apostle Panayot Volov and assistant Georgi Benkovski.

The uprising erupted prematurely on April 20. In an attempt to capture Todor Kableshkov by the Ottomans, the inhabitants of Koprivshtitsa took up arms and killed the local "mudurin" (Turkish Deputy Governor). Kableshkov wrote his famous “Bloody Letter”, which was sent to Benkovski in Panagyurishte.

Caricature depicts the ignoring of Bulgarian atrocities by the British aristocracy. In contrast, the British media and public had a strong movement that helped Bulgaria to be noticed by the people in power.

Despite the defeat and atrocities committed by the Ottoman Empire in Batak, Perushtitsa, Klisura, Panagyurishte, the insurgents drew Europe's attention to the “Bulgarian question”.

On the side of the Bulgarian cause stood the public in what are considered irreconcilable opponents - the two most powerful empires at the time - Russia and Britain. There was no big English city in which there was no rally or meeting in support of the Bulgarians at that time. The situation is similar in Russia, where both conservatives and liberals were united in defending the enslaved Bulgarians.

Thus, the April Uprising of a military failure became a triumph and a reason for the Liberation of Bulgaria. This happened two years later after Russia carried out the will of the European concert - Britain, Germany, Austria-Hungary, France and Italy - declared war on the Ottoman Empire.

Thanks to the self-sacrifice of the heroes of the April Epic, today there is a Bulgarian state, we now know the pleasure of the feeling of speaking our native language. However, the main goal of this uprising was the emergence of Bulgaria on the European political map. This would not have been possible if not for the April Uprising as the highest peak of the Bulgarian national liberation movement.

Sofia Photo Agency

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