Realizing how important it was to establish Macedonias borders, the Macedonian Scholarly and Literary Society in St. Petersburg, at its second session, stated: The borders of Macedonia are defined as follows: the Shara Mountain and the border with the Kingdom of Serbs to the north; the Drim River, Mt. Pindus and Grammos to the west; the Bistritsa River and the White Sea to the south, and the Mesta River to the east. As Dr. Blazhe Ristovski notes, the development of history has stressed the need for the national liberation movement to preserve the unity and integrity of the Macedonian fatherland and people. This was why it was necessary , first of all, to determine precisely the frameworks, the territory and the borders of this entity
DIMITRIJA CHUPOVSKI: THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE WITHIN THE BORDERS OF MACEDONIA ARE THE MACEDONIANS!
After all those wars and partitions, the present-day Macedonian borders do not coincide with those defined by the Macedonian patriots, but it should be stressed once more that this was the first Macedonian national map printed in the contemporary Macedonian language, which was undoubtedly important not only for making the world accept the truth about Macedonia, but also for the Macedonians themselves and their becoming conscious about their own ethnic borders
It has been 85 years exactly since Dimitrija Chupovski (born in 1878 in the village of Papradishte, near Veles; died in 1940 in Leningrad), one of the greatest Macedonian national activists of the first decades of this century, prepared the first map of Macedonia within its geographical and ethnic borders. This was also the first geographical document drawn by a Macedonian. The map was titled Carta Macedonia according to the Program of the Macedonian Patriots and, regardless of its enormous relevance for the scholarly determination of Macedonias natural, historical, geographical and ethnic borders, was only an appendix to the Memorandum for Independence of Macedonia (March 1, 1913), which the members of the Macedonian Colony in St. Petersburg sent to the participants in the London Conference, and to all the principal newspapers in Russia. This Memorandum, prepared by Dr. Gavril Konstantinovich, Natse Dimov (the younger brother of D. Chupovski), Dimitrija Chupovski and Aleksandar Vezenkov on behalf of the Colony, stated: Carrying out its sacred duty to its fatherland and deliberately advocating the slogan Macedonia to the Macedonians, The Macedonian Colony in St. Petersburg protests and cannot remain indifferent to the fact that the allied Balkan states (Bulgaria, Serbia and Greece), our brothers in blood and faith, are preparing to partition our fatherland, which stands at the same cultural level as they, and which is larger than Serbia and Greece in terms of its population, at some three and a half million. We cannot be indifferent to this sad funeral procession which wans to bury our poor country of Macedonia, to suppress the political and spiritual life of our entire nation, and the funeral of the fatherland of the holy brothers, Saints Cyril and Methodius. After the partition of brotherly Poland, the division of Macedonia by our Slavic brothers is another inhuman act in the history of peoples, a cruel violation of human rights, a shameful act of the entire Slavic population. The Turkish yoke is now being replaced by a Christian one.
Dimitrija Chupovski began his work on the map of Macedonia immediately after his arrival in St. Petersburg from occupied Macedonia. He was very upset by what was going on in Macedonia during the First World War, and he wove the entire tragedy of the already partitioned country into this map.
In cartography, beginning with the map of Ptolemy (2nd century A.D.) and the Tabula Peutingeriana (two hundred years later), to the second half of the last century, Macedonia as an ethnographic territory was always represented outside the borders of Bulgaria, Serbia, Greece and Albania. Only after the emergence of their nationalist propaganda did Macedonia begin to be introduced into the ethnic territories of its neighbors. And when the map of the Slavic peoples appeared as a special supplement to the Russian-Slavic Calendar in St. Petersburg in 1890, which depicted Macedonia in a different color, acknowledging that the people inhabiting this region of the Turkish Empire were ethnically distinct, there were sharp reactions on the part of Bulgaria and Serbia.
Realizing how important it was to establish Macedonias borders, the Macedonian Scholarly and Literary Society in St. Petersburg, at its second session, stated: The borders of Macedonia are defined as follows: the Shara Mountain and the border with the Kingdom of Serbs to the north; the Drim River, Mt. Pindus and Grammos to the west; the Bistritsa River and the White Sea to the south, and the Mesta River to the east. As Dr. Blazhe Ristovski notes, the development of history has stressed the need for the national liberation movement to preserve the unity and integrity of the Macedonian fatherland and people. This was why it was necessary, first of all, to determine precisely the framework, the territory and the borders of this entity. Dimitrija Chupovski was the first Macedonian who undertook the responsibilityof drawing an ethnic, geographical, historical and political map of Macedonia for the needs of the general protest of the Macedonians with the negotiators in London who were about to redraw the map of the Balkans after Turkeys defeat. On March 28, 1913, the Slavjanin newspaper published the information that D.D. Pavle Chupovski has prepared a new complete map of Macedonia, determining its borders exactly. The eminent Russian journalist, V.V. Vodovozov, in his book In the Balkans published his own map of Macedonia which, as he himself admitted, was based on the map of the Macedonian patriots, i.e. on Chupovskis map. The renowned Slavophile, General P.D. Parensov, who fiercely opposed the request for Macedonian autonomy or, God forbid, independence of this Slavic country, and who publicly declared himself against Chupovskis activities, criticized the work of the Macedonian Colony in St. Petersburg and reproached Chupovski for presenting Macedonia as too big with regard to its neighbors, for including some places which did not belong within its ethnic borders,, and for not drawing the border between Albania and Old Serbia and between Albania and Greece.
In his open letter, Dimitrija Chu-povski categorically refuted General Parensovs accusations. In his public statement, he wrote:
You are surpassed by the size of Macedonia, which in your opinion is too large, compared to its neighbors. But you do not state precisely the borders of Macedonia as you wish them to be. You are asking why the map of Macedonia which I have prepared states the port of Lagos and the watershed of the Mesta River as the eastern border, and the Aegean Sea, the Halkidikki Peninsula and the Gulf of Salonica as the southern border, and that the territory of Macedonia includes the towns of Prilep, Bitola, Skopje, the Debar region etc.
If you are surprised by the inclusion of these towns and the Aegean coastline with the cities of Salonica, Serres, Voden (Edessa) and others into Macedonias territory, then what are the borders that you recognize and the towns that you include within Macedonia?
Unfortunately, You have not stated the borders of Macedonia that you would prefer, so I suggest that you learn something about the number of maps of Macedonia that exist, especially the one issued in 1903 by the Internal Macedonian Organization, the map of Mr. Kanchev issued in 1900, the map issued in 1890 by your Slavic Charity Association and the other maps which will show you that Macedonias eastern border is the Lagos Gulf and the watershed of the Mesta River, the southern border is the southern watershed of the Bistritsa River and the entire coast line of the Aegean Sea, including the Halkidikki Peninsula and the island of Thassos.
Then, Chupovski gives explanations about the border with Albania:
As for the borders between Albania and Old Serbia, on the one hand, and between Albania and Greece on the other, I did not mark them because, first, these borders have no direct relevance for Macedonia, and, second, because I consider this territory to be disputable, undivided, which is why I marked it on the map in a neutral color, just like Thrace and the other territories formerly under the Turkish rule.
The Slavic people who live within the borders of Macedonia presented on the map which I have drawn are the Macedonians, who ever since the first centuries of the Christian era have been struggling for their national, cultural, political and economic independence.
The Russian Colonel, G.G. Georgiev, originally from Ohrid, a close friend of Chupovskis who shared his views, published a short study on the geography and ethnography of Macedonia in the second issue of the organ of the Macedonian Colony in St. Petersburg, reviewing Chupovskis map. Georgiev stated that only after the Odrin Peace Treaty of 1829 did the geographers begin to explain the geography of the Balkans, and that so far, there has not been any systematic research in these countries. Dwelling on Macedonia, Georgiev noted: Its land borders with the afore-mentioned countries go almost all the way along the high mountain ridges and mountain massifs which at the same time create the watersheds between the river systems of Macedonia (the Bistritsa, the Vardar, the Struma and the Mesta) and the neighboring countries. The author analyzed in detail these mountain ridges and watersheds and stressed that Macedonia is surrounded by ranges of high mountains on all sides, emphasizing by this the three basically parallel mountain ridges and stating that all Macedonian rivers flow into the White Sea (the Aegean Sea, translators note), except for the Crni Drim which flows into the Adriatic. G.G. Georgiev also wrote about the lakes and the bogs, the towns, the industry and trade, the road network and the population, stating that within these borders, Macedonia occupied about 1,100 to 1,200 square miles and that there were about three and a half million people there, 65% of whom were Macedonian Slavs, 13% were Turks, 9% Greeks, 7% Albanians, 3.25% Vlachs, 1.5 % Jews, 1% Roma and 0.5 % other nationalities, also marking their approximate location on the Macedonian territory. The author also gave data about the populations composition in terms of faith: 67.5 % were Orthodox Christians, 30.25% Muslims, 1.5% Jews, 0.33% Catholics, etc., concluding that: the geographical and ethnographic position of the country is such that it was for many centuries and still is, in the words of the Russian writer A.V. Amfiteatrov, a country of discord between the neighboring states and nations. Its population, the Macedonians, are the first Slavs who have struggled for a long time for their freedom and have every chance to become an independent state.
Academician Blazhe Ristovski, whose study Dimitrija Chupovski (1878-1940) has served as the basis for this text, while writing about Chupovskis map, emphasized: What distinguishes this map and gives it a special place in the Macedonian cultural and national history is not only its presentation of the borders with its neighbors, but above all its language, alphabet and orthography. Since all these were a result of the Macedonian Colony in St. Petersburg, as an expression of the views of the Macedonian Scholarly and Literary Society and D.D. Chupovskis personal views, we will concentrate on them too.
In terms of the language, what is characteristic is that it contains the features of the western Macedonian dialect with obvious attempts at as literary expression as possible. The neologism patriots is especially striking in this regard. Although this edition was meant primarily for international purposes, with the aim of stressing ones own national individuality, the entire printed text, except for the trademark of the printing house, was in Macedonian. The toponyms and geographical names were given in their local dialects, but there was also some influence from the existing literature.
Very characteristic is Chupovskis effort at noting the names of the regions: Vardarsko, Tikveshko, Morihovsko, Moglensko, Osogovsko, Maleshevsko, Ovche-pole, Pelagonia, and even the ethnic features: Miatsi, Brsjatsi, etc. The alphabet that D. Chupovski used was based on the secular (basically Russian) Cyrillic, however, without the characteristic Russian letters Y, Q, etc. He completely excluded the vowel & ( ) and thus obviously drifted away from the Russian and Bulgarian transcriptions. As for the orthography, it should be stressed that it is consistently phonetic, with the exceptions made by Misirkov, which still exist today...
Generally speaking, the language, alphabet, and orthography used in Chupovskis map are not much different from the norms set by K.P. Misirkov and from our contemporary literary norms. This is only one more contribution to the continuity and practical use of the contemporary Macedonian literary language and orthography which were theoretically established by Misirkov at the beginning of this century.
And then he concludes: This is the map of D. D. Chupovski from the beginning of 1913, which represented the legitimacy of Macedonia and the Macedonian national liberation program. After all those wars and partitions, the present-day Macedonian borders do not coincide with those defined by the Macedonian patriots, but it should be stressed once more that this was the first Macedonian national map printed in contemporary Macedonian, which was undoubtedly important not only for making the world accept the truth about Macedonia, but also for the Macedonians themselves and their becoming conscious about their own ethnic borders, especially bearing in mind the fact that copies of this edition were also sent to Macedonia, where they have been preserved to the present day.
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