Mila Rodino

"Mila Rodino" (Bulgarian: Мила Родино, [ˈmiɫɐ ˈrɔdino]; Dear Motherland) is the national anthem of Bulgaria. It was composed and written by Tsvetan Radoslavov as he left to fight in the Serbo-Bulgarian War in 1885. The anthem was adopted in 1964. The text has been changed many times, most recently in 1990. From 13 July 1991 the anthem is shorten to its first verse with the chorus.[2]

Mila Rodino
English: Dear Motherland
Bulgarian Anthem Music Sheet.InstrumentalSimple.svg

National anthem of Bulgaria
LyricsTsvetan Radoslavov, 1885
MusicTsvetan Radoslavov, 1885
Adopted8 September 1964 (by of People's Republic of Bulgaria)[1]
18 May 1971 (reaffirmed in the Zhivkov Constitution)[1]
10 November 1989 (by Bulgaria)[1]
12 July 1991 (reaffirmed in the Constitution of Bulgaria)[1]
Audio sample
"Mila Rodino" (instrumental rendition in F minor)

Between 1886 and 1947, the Bulgarian national anthem was "Shumi Maritsa"; from 1951 to 1964, it was "Balgariyo mila, zemya na geroi"; in the brief period between these two, it was the march "Republiko nasha, zdravey!".


Vocal rendition by a choir


The song was created by the composer Tsvetan Radoslavov in 1885 after his participation in the Serbo-Bulgarian War. He was inspired to create the song based on his poems when he saw Serbian students singing their own patriotic song on their journey home.[3] It was first printed in 1895 in Part I of "Music Textbook" by K. Mahan.[4]

Adoption as the national anthemEdit

In the 1960s after the de-Stalinization process, the poet Georgi Dzhagarov began an effort to replace the previous anthem, which include references to Stalin and because the lyrics of the anthem was similar to the anthem of the Soviet Union. After discussing with Todor Zhivkov, the General Secretary of the Bulgarian Communist Party, Zhivkov accepted the idea, and soon, by the Order No.1093, on 29 March 1962, the Council of Ministers held a competition for the lyrics and the music for the new anthem, with the deadline for the submission of lyrics on 1 May 1963 and the music on 1 November 1963. The composition of the committee for the new anthem was selected by Zhivkov himself, and the lyrics for the new anthem must be finalized on 1 September 1963 and for the music on 1 March 1964. The Council of Ministers also draws up a panel of experts to look at the projects submitted in advance and to put the best of the proposals for discussion with the committee.[1][5]

After the proposals for the lyrics and the music were submitted, none of the proposals satisfies them, so they accepted the advice of Georgi Dzhagarov to use "Mila Rodino" as the music for the new anthem. The composition of lyrics were assigned to Georgi Dzhagarov and Dmitry Metodiev, while the melody of the anthem was revised with further harmonization by Philip Kutev and Alexander Raichev.[1]

Under Zhivkov's orders, Georgi Dzhagarov and Dimitar Metodiev were resided in the Vrana Palace to compose the text of Mila Rodino.[6]

During the composition of the lyrics, Georgi Dzhagarov was not particularly proud of his creation. He preferred the anthem without the mentions of the Soviet Union and the leadership of the Bulgarian Communist Party in the third verse of the anthem. An alternate version of the third verse can be found in Dzhagarov's manuscript :[1]

Дружно, братя българи! (Together, Bulgarian brothers!)
Греят нови върхове, (New pinnacles shine,)
Знамето над нас се вее (The flag flies above us)
и на подвиг ни зове. (and calls us to heroic deeds.)[1]

The final composition of the lyrics consisted of the original first verse and the chorus of the anthem by Tsvetan Radoslavov, and the new two verses, which the second verse has references to the fight for the independence of Bulgaria and the fight against fascism in World War 2, and the third verse has references to the Soviet Union/Russian SFSR/Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and the Communist Party of Bulgaria.[7]

On 8 September 1964 "Mila Rodino" was finally affirmed by the Presidium of the National Assembly, with the Decree No. 534, as the national anthem of Bulgaria.[8] The first performance of the song as the national anthem of Bulgaria took place on 9 September 1964, the 20th anniversary of the Socialist Revolution of 9 September.[5]


In 1964, before the affirmation of "Mila Rodino" as the national anthem, the decision met resistance from Petko Staynov. Staynov argues that the melody is of Ashkenazi Jewish origin and this makes the song not suitable for being the anthem of Bulgaria. Dobri Hristov counters the argument, stating that there are hundreds of melodies in Bulgarian songs which are borrowed from other people and thus became an integral part of the Bulgarian musical heritage.[1]

This statement led Staynov being removed from the committee for the new anthem by Todor Zhivkov.[1]

Proposals for a new anthemEdit

During the discussion for the new constitution of Bulgaria in the 7th Grand National Assembly, there are some proposals submitted for a new anthem. The proposals include "Shumi Maritsa"—the Bulgarian national anthem from 1886 to 1947, and "Vărvi, narode văzrodeni"—the anthem of the Bulgarian education.[1]

The most recent one was the petition by writer Nikola Indzhov to change the anthem of Bulgaria to "Vărvi, narode văzrodeni".[9][10]

Regulation on the anthemEdit

Current regulationEdit

According to the Institutional Identity of the Administration of the State of Bulgaria,[11] there are two versions of the anthem, the full and the abridged version.

Official version of the anthemEdit

  • The official version of the anthem in an instrumental rendition for wind orchestra is performed by the Brass Orchestra of the National Guard.
  • The official version of the anthem in an instrumental rendition for symphony orchestra is performed by the Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra.
  • The official version of the anthem in a vocal version is performed by the Mixed Choir of the Bulgarian National Radio.

Performances of the anthemEdit

The anthem is to be played at the following occasions:

  • celebration of the Liberation Day on 3 March
  • on public holidays, celebrating historical events and personalities
  • ceremonies for raising the flag of the Republic of Bulgaria
  • state and official visits
  • ceremonies for offering a wreath to the monument of the Unknown Soldier
  • diplomatic ceremonies
  • military ceremonies
  • other official events of national importance
  • on the initiative of the state authorities
  • local celebrations with a decision of the Municipal Council

The abridged version of the anthem can be played at the following occasions:

  • on cultural and sporting events
  • on the occasion of the opening of the school year

The anthem of the Republic of Bulgaria can only be performed once a day, on the same ceremony.

Bans on the usage of the anthemEdit

The anthem of the Republic of Bulgaria can not be used in advertising, with the exception of national campaigns taken by state authorities. The anthem can not be used as part of another melody or song, to be performed in remixed variants with text other than the legally established by means of musical instruments that create a humorous sound, with pauses, interruptions or extensions of the tones, which change the original sound.

Original regulationEdit

The first regulation on the anthem came from the Decree No. 534 "On the approval of the text and the music of the national anthem of the People's Republic of Bulgaria", which was published on 8 September 1964.[8]

1. The national anthem shall be performed with in the following cases:

(a) when receiving and sending official foreign state and party delegations led by the Head of State, the President of the Council of Ministers or the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Bulgaria and the solemn performances, meetings and receptions organized in their honor, unless otherwise agreed between the parties, as well as laying wreaths from them in front of the Georgi Dimitrov Mausoleum and the Monument to the Soviet Army and the Mound of Brotherhood.

On sending or receiving a Bulgarian official state or party delegation, headed by persons of the rank mentioned in the previous paragraph - by appropriate decision;
(b) at formal official meetings, shows and receptions organized in connection with the national holiday of the People's Republic of Bulgaria;
(c) when letters of credit issued by foreign diplomatic agents are served;
(d) during a ceremony in connection with the national holiday of the People's Republic of Bulgaria, on the day of celebration the memory of fallen fighters against fascism and capitalism, in the Fatherland War and the national liberation movement, as well as during the funeral of high state or public figures;
(e) in the official opening of monuments with national importance;
(f) in parades of troops, in taking oath by soldiers and in giving a military honor by performing the National anthem according to the military statutes or in other cases not specified in them, ordered by the Minister of National Defense;
(g) daily broadcast on the national radio station at the end of its program;
(h) in the opening of country national or international reviews, competitions and competitions or international sports meetings of national representative teams and in awarding prizes to Bulgarian athletes and teams that rank first in them;
(i) for celebrations of patron saints of schools, higher education institutions, scientific and other institutes.

2. The national anthem may be performed at the discretion of public organizations of the working people and of solemn meetings and celebrations organized by them.

3. When the Bulgarian national anthem is performed in other country together with the national anthem of the other country, according to the established international custom, the national anthem of the other country is performed first.

If the national anthem of the People's Republic of Bulgaria is performed in Bulgaria together with the national anthem of the other country, the national anthem of the People's Republic of Bulgaria is performed first.

4. It is forbidden to perform the National anthem at inappropriate places (restaurants, amusement facilities, etc.), except for official receptions, lunches and evenings.

5. For the application of the decree, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of National Defense shall issue an ordinance.

The implementation of this decree is entrusted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of National Defense.[8]


Bulgarian originalEdit

Cyrillic script Latin script IPA transcription

Горда Стара планина,
до ней Дунава синей,
слънце Тракия огрява,
над Пирина пламеней.

Мила Родино,
ти си земен рай,
твойта хубост, твойта прелест, 
ах, те нямат край.

Паднаха борци безчет,
за народа наш любим,
майко, дай ни мъжка сила,
пътя им да продължим.*


Дружно, братя българи!
С нас Москва е в мир и в бой!
Партия велика води
нашия победен строй.*


Gorda Stara planina,
Do nei Dunava sinei,
Slănțe Trachia ogreava,
Nad Pirina plamenei.

Mila Rodino,
Ti si zemen rai,
Tvoita hubost, tvoita prelest,
Ah, te neamat crai.

Padnaha borți bezcet,
Za naroda naș liubim,
Maico, dai ni măjca sila,
Pătea im da prodăljim.


Drujno, bratea bălgari!
S nas Moscva e v mir i v boi!
Partia velica vodi
Nașia pobeden stroi.


[ɡɔr.d̪ɐ s̪t̪a.rɐ pɫɐ.n̪i.n̪a ǀ]
[d̪o̝ n̪ɛj d̪u.n̪ɐ.vɐ s̪i.n̪ɛj ǀ]
[s̪ɫɤ̞n̪.tsɛ t̪ra.k̟i.jɐ o̝g.rʲa̟.vɐ ǀ]
[n̪at̪ pi.ri.n̪ɐ pɫɐ.mɛ.n̪ɛj ǁ]

[mi.ɫɐ rɔ.d̪i.n̪o̝ ǀ]
[t̪i s̪i z̪ɛ.mɛn̪ raj ǀ]
[t̪fɔj.t̪ɐ xu.bɔs̪t̪ ǀ t̪fɔj.t̪ɐ prɛ.lɛs̪t̪ ǀ]
[ax ǀ t̪ɛ ɲ̪a̟.mɐt̪ kraj ǁ]

[pad̪.n̪ɐ.xɐ bo̝r.tsi bɛs̪.tʃɛt̪ ǀ]
[z̪ɐ n̪ɐ.rɔ.d̪ɐ n̪aʃ ʎu̟.bim ǀ]
[maj.ko̝ ǀ d̪aj n̪i mɤ̞ʃ.kɐ s̪i.ɫɐ ǀ]
[pɤ̞.t̪ʲɐ im d̪ɐ pro̝.d̪əɫ.ʒim ǁ]


[d̪ruʒ.n̪o̝ ǀ bra.t̪ʲɐ bɤ̞ɫ.gɐ.ri ǁ]
[s̪‿n̪as̪ mo̝.s̪kfa ɛ‿v mir i‿v bɔj ǁ]
[par.t̪i.jɐ vɛ.li.kɐ vɔ.d̪i]
[n̪a.ʃi.jɐ po̝.bɛ.d̪ɛn̪ s̪t̪rɔj ǁ]


Metered translationEdit

O thy Balkan Mounts noble,
By it the Danube sparkleth;
O’er Thrace the Sun beameth forth,
O’er Pirin blazeth forth.
O dear Motherland,
Thou earth’s Promised Land,
Thy beauty, thy loveliness,
Ah, forever boundless.
For our people beloved,
Lives martyrs have sacrificed.
Mother, give us virile strength
For persevering their path.*
As one, Bulgarian kins,
With Moscow in war and peace.
Lead by thy great Party,
Our regime of victory.*
  • During communist rule, two additional verses (II and III) were added that referred to Moscow (under direct instructions of Todor Zhivkov) and the Bulgarian Communist Party, as well as the fallen fighters for Bulgaria through the years. After the changes in 1989, that part of the anthem was removed and forbidden to be performed.

Original lyricsEdit

Мила Родино
Bulgarian Cyrillic script
Mila Rodino
Bulgarian Latin script
Dear Motherland
Translated in English

Горда стара планина,
До ней север се синей
Слънце Витош позлатява
Към Цариград се белей.

Мила Родино,
Ти си земен рай,
Твойта хубост, твойта прелест,
Ах, те нямат край.

Хайде братя българи,
Към Балкана да вървим.
Там се готви бой юнашки,
За свобода, правдини.


Родино мила, теб привет,
О, майко теб привет!
Теб Българийо чада сме,
Ти си наший дом свещен!


Ти си наший кът любим,
Кът за щастие отреден!
Мил си край незабравим,
С чудна прелест надарен!


Как щедро, майко, е
Земята твоя осеяна с брилянти!
Сред тях прекрасен свети
Балканът горд напет –


О, виж го как сияй!
Ний благоговеем пред него и пеем:


Gorda Stara Planina,
Do nei sever se sinei.
Slănțe Vitoș pozlateava
Căm Țarigrad se belei.

Mila Rodino,
Ti si zemen rai,
Tvoita hubost, tvoita prelest –
Ah, te neamat crai.

Haide bratea bălgari,
Căm Balcana da vărvim.
Tam se gotvi boi iunașchi,
Za svoboda, pravdini.


Rodino mila, teb privet,
O, maico teb privet!
Teb Bălgario ceada sme,
Ti si nașii dom sveșten!


Ti si nașii căt liubim,
Căt za ștastie otreden!
Mil si crai nezabravim,
S ciudna prelest nadaren!


Cac ștedro, maico, e
Zemeata tvoia oseiana s brileanti!
Sred teah precrasen sveti
Balcanăt gord napet –


O, vij go cac siai!
Nii blagogoveem pred nego i peem:


O the Balkan Mounts noble,
Beside it the North sparkleth;
Holy Sun Vitosha gildeth,
Toward Tsargrad whitely shineth.
O dear Motherland,
Thou earth's Promised Land,
Thy beauty, Thy loveliness,
Ah, forever boundless.

Off we go Bulgarian kins,
Toward the Balkan Mounts,
There approacheth a heroic battle,
For freedom and for justice.


Dear Motherland, Thee we greet,
Oh Mother, Thee we welcome,
Thou art sons of Bulgaria,
Thou art our sacred home.


Thou art our playground cherished,
Thou art for happiness destined,
An ending unforgettable
With wondrous beauty endowed.


How generous, O Mother,
Thy land aboundeth in diamonds,
’Mong these wonderful lights,
Proudly spruceth up the Balkans.


Oh, look how ’tis radiant!
Before it, we reverence and sing:


Versions of the lyricsEdit

Another version of the lyrics was published by composer Dobri Hristov. It was published in the Rodina collection, by the Publishing of the Bulgarian-Mohammedian Cultural and Enlightenment Friendship, in the town of Smolyan.[14]

Горда Стара-планина.
Надъ ней северъ синей,
До ней Витошъ възвишава
Гордо свойтѣ раменѣ

Мила Родино,
Ти си земенъ рай!
Твойта хубость, твойта прелесть,
Ахъ, тѣ нѣматъ край!

Гордо Дунавътъ се лѣй!
Свойта пѣсень тихо пѣй!
Вѣченъ споменъ той за Ботевъ
Отъ гърди си ще лелѣй!


Чуй Марица, какъ шуми,
И съсъ радость си мълви,
Че тамъ, дето кърви бѣха
— Днесъ тамъ розата цъвти!


In popular cultureEdit

In October 2017, a Redditor reported an incident where Siri thought the national anthem of Bulgaria was Luis Fonsi's single "Despacito". This bug was fixed afterwards.[15][16][17][18]

Sheet MusicEdit

See alsoEdit



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Химнът на България през превратностите на времето". Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  2. ^ National Assembly of the Republic of Bulgaria Official website
  3. ^ "1963 г. Радой Ралин лобира химн да е "Мила Родино"". March 3, 2016. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
  4. ^ "ТАЙНАТА ИСТОРИЯ НА ХИМНА НА НАРОДНА РЕПУБЛИКА БЪЛГАРИЯ". March 11, 2017. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
  5. ^ a b "ИСТОРИЯ НА БЪЛГАРСКИЯ ХИМН". Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  6. ^ "Мила родино". Assoc. Prof. Vesselka Toncheva, PhD and Ch. Prof. Grigor Grigorov, PhD. Retrieved August 25, 2018.
  7. ^ "Комунистическа България – с герб-некролог и химн, възпяващ Москва и Сталин". December 2, 2016. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
  8. ^ a b c "Държавен вестник, брой 71 от 8.IX". September 8, 1964.
  9. ^ "Предлагат смяна на химна на България" [They offer a change of the anthem of Bulgaria] (in Bulgarian). February 26, 2016. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  10. ^ "Ново 20: Предлагат смяна на химна!" [New 20: They offer a change of anthem!] (in Bulgarian). January 25, 2016. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  11. ^ "Химн на Република България". Retrieved July 20, 2018.
  12. ^ Народно събрание на Република България
  13. ^ Ivan Voynikov, 2005, History of the Bulgarian state symbols. Part three: The Bulgarian anthem, in Bulgarian:, Retrieved 2016-03-04.
  14. ^ "Сборникъ РОДИНА. Издание на българо-мохамеданската културно-просвѣтна и благотворителна дружба "Родина" въ гр. Смоленъ". Retrieved August 25, 2018.
  15. ^ Molloy, Mark (2017-10-05). "Siri mistakes Bulgaria's national anthem for Despacito song". The Telegraph.
  16. ^ Luu, Christipher (2017-10-04). "According To Siri, The National Anthem Of Bulgaria Is "Despacito"". Refinery29.
  17. ^ Shead, Sam (2017-10-05). "Siri briefly thought Bulgaria's national anthem was 'Despacito'". Business Insider UK.
  18. ^ Marie Segarra, Lisa (2017-10-05). "Siri Thought 'Despacito' Was the National Anthem of Bulgaria". Fortune.

External linksEdit