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Varna


Armenian community    EN

Author: ROUSSEV IVAN

According to S. Ovanyan, Varna’s Armenian community as well as those in the other port-cities (Burgas, Anhialo etc.) and in the Bulgarian heartlands emerged in the mid-16th century but the historical sources categorically prove Armenian presence in Varna only from the following 17th century onwards. During the third quarter of the 19th century Varna’s Armenians amounted to 140 houses accommodating 200 families, that is around 1 000 people. The Armenian colonies in Kustendzha, Burgas, and the other settlements on the Black Sea coast were significantly smaller. A report of the Russian consul in Varna A. Olhin from 1863 depicted them as good craftsmen (goldsmiths, tailors, shoemakers, carpenters), hard-working people, but very poor, “poorer than the Bulgarians and much poorer than the Greeks…”. Apparently, the wealth and the influential position of the “weighty” Armenians in Varna from the 17th-18th c., the famous adzhem tudzhars, who were Persian subjects and used to operate the Silk Road in its northern branches leading through Constantinople to Poland, Russia, and Central Europe, had by that time become only a memory of the past. Olhin “saw” in Varna’s Armenians an ill-bred and ill-educated population. There was only one Armenian boys’ school in the town, where two teachers had to teach all the 100 children with dıffıculty. The young Armenian women had no access to education. Varna’s Armenians were subject to a strong influence from the local Turkish population in the realms of language and everyday life[1].

 


[1] Хаджолян, М. Арменската общност в град Варна. – Сб. „10 книги за Варна 2003”, Варна, 2004, с. 11–36; Русев, И. Варна през Късното Средновековие и Възраждането (края на XІV в. – 1878 г.). – В: Русев, И., В. Плетньов. История на Варна. Т. ІІ (VII в. – 1878 г.). Изд. „Славена” – Варна, 2012, с. 407.


References

Bibliography:

Библиография:

Хаджолян, М. Арменската общност в град Варна. – Сб. „10 книги за Варна 2003”, Варна, 2004, с. 11–36;

Русев, И. Варна през Късното Средновековие и Възраждането (края на XІV в. – 1878 г.). – В: Русев, И., В. Плетньов. История на Варна. Т. ІІ (VII в. – 1878 г.). Изд. „Славена” – Варна, 2012, с. 407.


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