Armenians settled in the Balkan Peninsula on 5 centuries. From 8th century to 10 century Byzantine emperors settled in Thrace, Rhodope, Macedonia several hundred thousand Armenians. During the Ottoman conquest (1363 - 1693), successive waves of settlers, Armenians from Armenia, Crimea, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Asia Minor, reached the territory of modern Bulgaria. 20 000 Armenians, escaping the Turkish violence at the time of Sultan Abdul Hamid II, settled in Bulgaria in 1894 - in 1896 during the Balkan War (1912 - 1913), the number of Armenians in Bulgaria reached 35 000 and continues to grow. After the genocide of Armenians in Turkey (1915 - 1922), in 1922 during the reign of Alexander Stamboliyski, 22 000 Armenians found refuge in Bulgaria. Their descendants and immigrants from Armenia after the collapse of the Soviet Union, are most of today's Armenians in Bulgaria.
Today the Armenian community in Bulgaria numbers about 30 000 (unofficial data) including the immigrants. Since its formation until today the Armenian community in Bulgaria leads versatile broad social life, participating actively (with the exception of the policy) in all areas of economic, cultural and social life.
|The Armenian church "Surp Sakis" in Varna. |
Close to it is situated an Armenian school also.
Armenians in Bulgaria on one hand are extremely sustainable community which preserved its identity, on the other, they are fully integrated into the Bulgarian society and participate in all spheres of public life. Historically known as a skilled craftsmen in traditional crafts community - jewelry, watch making, etc. Today many Armenians in Bulgaria are emerging in the new computer equipment related professions and are quite related to modern Bulgarian culture and science. The presence of Armenian families among the founders of the Bulgarian culture and science encourage other process - the interest of the Bulgarian society to the Armenian culture and history.
Source: www.wikipedia.com, http://bulgaria.mfa.am