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The Seven Rila Lakes, Rila, Bulgaria
The Seven Rila Lakes, Rila, Bulgaria

Location of Bulgaria (dark green)

Bulgaria (/bʌlˈɡɛəriə, bʊl-/ ; Bulgarian: България, romanizedBŭlgariya), officially the Republic of Bulgaria, is a country in Southeast Europe. Located west of the Black Sea and south of the Danube river, Bulgaria is bordered by Romania to the north, Serbia and North Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south. Bulgaria covers a territory of 110,994 square kilometres (42,855 sq mi), and is the sixteenth-largest country in Europe. Sofia is the nation's capital and largest city; other major cities are Plovdiv, Varna and Burgas.

Bulgaria is a developing country, with an upper-middle-income economy, ranking 68th in the Human Development Index. Its market economy is part of the European Single Market and is largely based on services, followed by industry—especially machine building and mining—and agriculture. Widespread corruption is a major socioeconomic issue; Bulgaria ranks among the most corrupt countries in the European Union. The country also faces a demographic crisis, with its population slowly shrinking, down from a peak of 9 million in 1989, to roughly 6.4 million today. Bulgaria is a member of the European Union, NATO, and the Council of Europe; it is also a founding member of the OSCE, and has taken a seat on the United Nations Security Council three times. (Full article...)

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Coin of Michael Shishman

Michael Asen III (Bulgarian: Михаил Асен III, Mihail Asen III, commonly called Michael Shishman (Михаил Шишман, Mihail Šišman)), ruled as tsar of Bulgaria from 1323 to 1330. The exact year of his birth is unknown but it was between 1280 and 1292. He was the founder of the last ruling dynasty of the Second Bulgarian Empire, the Shishman dynasty. After he was crowned, however, Michael used the name Asen to emphasize his connection with the Asen dynasty, the first one to rule over the Second Empire.

An energetic and ambitious ruler, Michael Shishman led an aggressive but opportunistic and inconsistent foreign policy against the Byzantine Empire and the Kingdom of Serbia, which ended in the disastrous Battle of Velbazhd that claimed his own life. He was the last medieval Bulgarian ruler who aimed at military and political hegemony of the Bulgarian Empire over the Balkans and the last one who attempted to seize Constantinople. He was succeeded by his son Ivan Stephen and later by his nephew Ivan Alexander, who reversed Michael Shishman's policy by forming an alliance with Serbia. (Full article...)
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Did you know (auto-generated)

  • ... that Lyubomir Pipkov is considered one of the founders of Bulgaria's modern professional musical establishment?
  • ... that one of the highest death rates in the Holocaust was in Bulgarian-occupied Greece, where 97 percent of Jews were killed in less than a month?


Selected Picture

Ivan Vazov National Theatre.
Ivan Vazov National Theatre.
Credit: MrPanyGoff

The Ivan Vazov National Theatre (Bulgarian: Народен театър „Иван Вазов“) is Bulgaria's national theatre, as well as the oldest and most authoritative theatre in the country and one of the important landmarks of Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. It is named after the Bulgarian writer and poet Ivan Vazov.

More did You Know?

  • ...that the chitalishte (community centre) in Novo Selo (pictured), constructed in 1930, is also a memorial to locals who perished in war?


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