The Ethnic and Historical origins of FYROM Part III

Foreign Evaluation of the ethnic make-up of Macedonia in the 1800s and 1900s

“Macedonian” was a geographical label, not ethnic. For outside/ foreign observers in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when the first stages of Macedonian (or makedonski) ethnogenosis had taken place, there was simply not sufficient evidence to distinguish the Vardar Slavs from the Bulgarians. Indeed there was simply no historic precedent or reality to a “Macedonian” race existing in the region, not in Byzantine times nor Ottoman obviously. This is reflected through the fact that foreign records did not take into consideration the small faction of Macedonists when considering the pressing Macedonian Problem, its ethnic make-up and future in light of the crumbling Ottoman Empire.

Needless to say not one foreign record, treaty, map or census: be it Ottoman, English, French, German or anyother ever mentioned a seperate “Macedonian ethnicity” or “Macedonian language” (see numerous maps and censuses below).

For example none of the following censuses identified any “Macedonian” language/ conscience/ ethnicity; only Greek, Bulgarian, Vlach, Turk, Albanian, Roma, Serb or Armenian:

-The League of Nations (forerunner to UN set up after WWI) never mentions any Macedonian race/ ethnicity.

-Journal “Le Temps” Paris 1905 (Gave a total population of 2,782,000 inhabitants and no “macedonian” race)

-Prof. G. Wiegland – Die Nationalen Bestrebungen der Balkansvölker. Leipzig 1898 (Gave a total population of 2,275,000 inhabitants and no “macedonian” race)

-1904 Turkish census of Hilmi Pasha for Thessaloniki, Monastiri, Scopje

-1906 Turkish census of Hilmi Pasha for the area of Macedonia.

-Official Turkish Statistic Ethnicity of Macedonia Philippopoli 1881

-Vassil Kantcheff – Macedonia Ethnicity and Statistic – 1900

-Leon Dominian – The frontiers of Language and Nationality in Europe. Published for the American Geographical Society of New York 1917

-Richard von Mach – Der Machtbereich des bulgarischen Exarchats in der Türkei. Leipzig – Neuchatel, 1906

-Prinz Tcherkasky ethnographie 1877

-The treaties of San Stefano (1878), London (1913) , Versailles (1919), the Congress of Berlin (1878) and others; all of which dealt with the Macedonian question, made no reference even to small group declaring themselves as ‘ethnic’ Macedonians, only Bulgarians, Serbs, Greeks, Muslims and other minorities

Popolazione dell’Impero ottomano , 1911 – Italian report on the population make up of the Ottoman Vilayets (administrative regions) which made up Macedonia; Monastir, Thessaloniki as well as Adrianople, Kosovo, Ioannina and Skutari:

Lingustically there is no doubting that the so called “Macedonian language” of today is a Bulgarian dialect. The Slavs of Vardar were traditionally described as Bulgarian by foreign obsevers and the Macedonists first dubbed their Bugarski dialect ‘Makedonski’ in the 19th century (As was described earlier in the page by Shapkarev in 1888). For more information on the Skopjian language and the history of its transformation from a Bulgarian idiom to a “Macedonian” language visit the page: Linguistic origins of F.Y.R.O.M – From Bulgarian dialect to “Macedonian” language

According to the 1899 edition of Encyclopedia Brittanica considering the respective Serb and Bulgarian for the Slavonic population:
“Almost all independent authorities, however, agree that the bulk of the Slavonic population of Macedonia is Bulgarian”

1903 London Times article outlining the Macedonian problem. Evidently the article does not consider Macedonism significant enough, or any revisionist claims of a “Macedonian ethnicity” a reality . The only ethnic groups mentioned are Albanians, Turks, Vlachs, Rumanians, Greeks, Servian and Bulgarian.

Slavonic population exerpt (Click for greater picture resolution):

The Above article in its entirety (Click for greater resolution):

By Voulgaroktonos

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