Perushtitsa and Macedonia - Thoughts and artifacts

In his book on the April Uprising, the famous professor Konstantin Galabov gives valuable and lesser-known information about his native Perushtitsa from the time of the Ottoman feudal riots of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century. As a result of the differentiation in different places and with different degrees of autonomy of the possessions of local Turkish rulers, who in their desire to impose their power in the territories entrusted to them commit atrocities against the Christian population. For this reason, there were waves of refugees to calmer areas of the empire. We should not be surprised that it is precisely such a wave of refugees or, more correctly, internal migration, as we are talking about Bulgarian ethnic territories, says Professor Galabov, who also settled in Perushtitsa at the end of the 18th century. In all probability, some of these oppressed people find refuge right here, because they knew in advance that this village has fully preserved its Bulgarian character and offers relatively peaceful opportunities for life.

That is why Konstantin Galabov writes: “Recently, after the Kardzhali time, many Macedonians moved to Perushtitsa, expelled by Ali Pasha Yaninski. There were about twenty Arnaut families among them, but of the baptized [this is the Albanian Christian population, my note]. They settled in the upper part of the village, which is why this part was formerly called Arnaut neighborhood. Some of the Macedonian settlers came from Kostur, others from the Arnaut region. My maternal great-grandfather, Gocho Kanev, whom I remember very well, said that people from Bratsigovo were also immigrants from Macedonia, expelled by Ali Pasha Yaninski. He also said that there were migrants from Macedonia in Sopot and that the Aivazovs from Perushtitsa were relatives of the Aivazovs from Sopot, of which our national poet Ivan Vazov, who threw the syllable "ay" in front of his name. Ivan Vazov knew this very well, and when I told him in a conversation, he was not at all surprised. His close friend Danail Yurukov from Bratsigovo also knew him. Both Aivazovs, from Perushtitsa and Sopot, are quite similar in appearance: they are black-eyed, have shaggy eyebrows and a mustache. ”

With the arrival of the so-called "Migrants" have specific features of the Macedonian (understand as part of the Bulgarian, my note) tradition. An interesting example in this regard are the preserved two sets of women's buckles, made of copper and richly ornamented with embossed floral motifs, which today are part of the Revival ethnographic collection of IM-Perushtitsa.

After the appearance of the Arnauts, about a century later, the people of Perushtitsa brought the "Arnaut shirts" to their clothing. A curious fact is probably another attribute brought to the men's costume - hanging a small, elongated piece of white cloth or towel. It is folded in the right part inside the belt. Thus, if "a beautiful dance is performed on the square" [note. my] the necessary round towel is always at hand. This was done mainly by the young Arnaut boys, but the example of using and wearing the handkerchief was subsequently used by all men in Perushtitsa, regardless of their age and status.


 Authors: Mario Jasim, Pavlina Isova