Islam in Bulgaria


Islam in Bulgaria
A mosque in Arda where Muslim Bulgarians reside

Islam is the largest minority religion in Bulgaria. According to the 2001 Census, the total number of Muslims in the country stood at 577,139[1], corresponding to 10 % of the population. The Muslim population of Bulgaria, which is made up of Turks, Bulgarians and Roma lives mainly in parts of northeastern Bulgaria and of the Rhodope Mountains.[2]

Contents

Muslims in Bulgaria according to ethnic group

General Mufti's Office of Bulgaria

According to the criterion of ethnicity, Muslims in Bulgaria were divided into the following groups in 2001:[3]

  • Turks - 713,024;
  • Muslim Bulgarians - 131 531;
  • Roma - 103 436;
  • Others - few

Most of the Muslims in Bulgaria are Sunni Muslims as Sunni Islam was the form of Islam promoted by the Ottoman Empire during their five-century rule of Bulgaria (see History of Bulgaria). Shi'a sects such as the Alians, Kizilbashi and the Bektashi also are present, however. About 80,000 Shi'a Muslims live mainly in the Razgrad, Sliven and Silistra provinces.

Though the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is a small sect in Bulgaria, their practice as Ahmadi Muslims is debarred due to the disagreement in belief between the majority Muslims.[4]

The largest mosque in Bulgaria is the Tumbul Mosque in Shumen, built in 1744.

History of Islam in Bulgaria

The first documented Muslim contacts with Bulgaria are dated to the mid-ninth century when there were Islamic missionaries in Bulgaria, evidenced by a letter from Pope Nicholas to Boris of Bulgaria that the Saracens must be extirpated.[5] During the time of Tsar Simeon insignificant Islamic influences on Bulgarian art began to appear, though it is believed that these can be traced to Byzantine influence.[6] Later during the 11th and 12th centuries, nomadic Turkic tribes such as the Cumans and the Pechenegs entered Bulgaria and engaged the Byzantine Empire. According to scholars, some of these were Muslim.[7][8] The Orthodox Christian Gagauzes are also purported to originate from the Cumans and Pechenegs[9]

Migration of Muslim Seljuq Turks to Dobruja during the 13th century is also mentioned.[10] In 1362, Ottoman Empirate captured the city of Adrianople (present-day Edirne) and with in the next two years they had advanced as far as Plovdiv. The city of Sofia fell in 1385. Islam established in the conquered Bulgarian lands in the late 14th century at the Ottoman rule of the Balkans, its' spreading growed until the Liberation of Bulgaria in the late 19th century after the Russo-Turkish War.[11] According to the office of the Grand Mufti in Sofia during the Turkish Ottoman rule in Bulgaria there were 2356 mosques, 174 tekke, 142 madrasah and 400 waqf. After the Russo-Turkish War, many Islamic properties were either destroyed or confiscated for civilian use.[12] Currently there are 1458 mosques in Bulgaria.[13]

Like the practitioners of other beliefs including Orthodox Christians, Muslims suffered under the restriction of religious freedom by the Marxist-Leninist Zhivkov regime which instituted state atheism and suppressed religious communities. The Bulgarian communist regimes declared traditional Muslim beliefs to be diametrically opposed to secular communist ideology. In 1989,[14] 310,000 Turks fled Bulgaria as a result of the communist Zhivkov regime's assimilation campaign. That program, which began in 1984, forced all Turks and other Muslims in Bulgaria to adopt Bulgarian names and renounce all Muslim customs. The motivation of the 1984 assimilation campaign was unclear; however, many experts believed that the disproportion between the birth rates of the Turks and the Bulgarians was a major factor.[15] After the breakdown of communism, Muslims in Bulgaria again enjoyed greater religious freedom. Some villages organized Qur'an study courses for young people (study of the Qur'an had been completely forbidden under Zhivkov). Muslims also began publishing their own newspaper, Musulmani, in both Bulgarian and Turkish.

See also

Further reading

References

  1. ^ 2011 Bulgarian census (in Bulgarian)
  2. ^ http://www.nsi.bg/Census/Census.htm
  3. ^ http://www.nccedi.government.bg/page.php?category=92&id=247
  4. ^ "Ahmadis barred “because it is against the religions that people follow here”". thePersecution. http://www.thepersecution.org/news/2006/f18n1122.html. Retrieved 28 October 2010. 
  5. ^ H. T. Norris: "Islam in the Balkans: religion and society between Europe and the Arab world" 1993 pp.21-27
  6. ^ H. T. Norris: "Islam in the Balkans: religion and society between Europe and the Arab world" 1993 pp.21-22
  7. ^ Ali Eminov: "Turkish and other Muslim minorities in Bulgaria" 1997 pp.25
  8. ^ H. T. Norris: "Islam in the Balkans: religion and society between Europe and the Arab world" 1993 pp.26
  9. ^ Searching for the Origin of Gagauzes: Inferences from Y-Chromosome Analysis
  10. ^ H. T. Norris: "Islam in the Balkans: religion and society between Europe and the Arab world" 1993
  11. ^ R. J. Crampton: "A short history of modern Bulgaria" 1987
  12. ^ Office of the Grand Mufti - Sofia:Müslümanlar Publication 5/2009
  13. ^ Office of the Grand Mufti - Sofia:Müslümanlar Publication 11/2009
  14. ^ See in Bulgarian: Stoyanov, V., Turskoto naselenie v Balgariya mezhdu polyusite na etnicheskata politika [The Turkish population between the poles of ethnic politics], (Sofia: LIK, 1998); Gruev, M., Mezhdu petolachkata i polumesetsa: Balgarite myusyulmani i politicheskiya rezhim (1944-1959) [Between the Five-pointed Star and the Crescent: The Bulgarians-Muslims and the Political Regime (1944-1959],(Sofia: IK “KOTA”, 2003); Kalkandjieva, D., The Bulgarian Communist Party’s Policies towards the Non-Orthodox Religious Communities (1944-1953),” Trudove na katedrite po istoria i bogoslovies [Historical and Theological Studies Department of Shumen University], v. 8 (2005): 252-264; Gruev M. and A. Kalyonski, Vazroditelniyat protses: Myusyulmanskite obshtnosti i komunisticheskiya rezhim [The “Revival Process”. Muslim Communities and the Communist Regime: Policies, Reactions and Consequences] (Sofia: CIELA, 2008).
  15. ^ Glenn E. Curtis, ed. Bulgaria: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1992

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Islam En Bulgarie — La mosquée Bania Bachi, construite en 1576 par l architecte ottoman Sinan. La population musulmane de Bulgarie comprend des Turcs, des Bulgares musulmans (les Pomaks) ainsi que des Tatar …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Islam en bulgarie — La mosquée Bania Bachi, construite en 1576 par l architecte ottoman Sinan. La population musulmane de Bulgarie comprend des Turcs, des Bulgares musulmans (les Pomaks) ainsi que des Tatar …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Islam in Bulgarien — Die Maktul İbrahim Pascha Moschee in Rasgrad wurde 1616 im Auftrag von İbrahim Pascha errichtet und ist die drittgrößte Moschee auf dem Balkan. Der Islam in Bulgarien ist nach dem Christentum die meist verbreitete Religion im Land. Seit 2007 ist… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Islam en Bulgarie — La mosquée Bania Bachi, construite en 1576 par l architecte ottoman Sinan. La population musulmane de Bulgarie comprend des Turcs, des Bulgares musulmans (les Pomaks) ainsi que des Tatars de Crimée. Elle vit principalement au nord …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Islam in Europe — Islam in Europe[1]   <1% (Armenia, Belarus, Czech R …   Wikipedia

  • Islam in Romania — is followed by only 0.3 percent of population, but has 700 years of tradition in Northern Dobruja, a region on the Black Sea coast which was part of the Ottoman Empire for almost five centuries (ca. 1420 1878). In present day Romania, most… …   Wikipedia

  • Islam in Pakistan — Category History Islamic conquest · Arab settlement Islamic rule · …   Wikipedia

  • Islam —     Mohammed and Mohammedanism     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Mohammed and Mohammedanism     I. THE FOUNDER     Mohammed, the Praised One , the prophet of Islam ( see Islam (Concept) ) and the founder of Mohammedanism, was born at Mecca (20… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Bulgaria — Infobox Country native name = bg. Република България bg. Republika Balgaria This article uses the official Bulgarian transliteration system when romanizing Bulgarian Cyrillic. For details, see Romanization of Bulgarian.] local name = bg. Balgaria …   Wikipedia

  • Bulgaria — /bul gair ee euh, bool /, n. a republic in SE Europe. 8,652,745; 42,800 sq. mi. (110,850 sq. km). Cap.: Sofia. * * * Bulgaria Introduction Bulgaria Background: The Bulgars, a Central Asian Turkic tribe, merged with the local Slavic inhabitants in …   Universalium


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.