Bulgarian Legion


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Bulgarian Legion

 

two military units set up in Belgrade in the 1860’s with the consent of the Serbian government by Bulgarian émigrés to fight for the liberation of Bulgaria from the Turkish yoke. The first Bulgarian Legion was founded by G. S. Rakovski in spring 1861 and numbered more than 500 men. V. Levski, P. Khitov, S. Karadzha, Kh. Makedonski, Iliu-voevoda, and others took part in it. The legion was conceived as a nucleus for a future rebel army. It participated in the fight between Serbs and the Turkish garrison in Belgrade in June 1862. After the settlement of the Serbo-Turkish conflict in September 1862 the legion was disbanded. The second Bulgarian Legion was composed of 200 students attending the military school set up in 1867 in Belgrade by Bulgarian émigré organizations; the school trained cadres for future uprisings in Bulgaria. In April 1868 the legion was disbanded by the Serbian government, which was ceasing military preparations against Turkey.

REFERENCES

Undzhiev, I. Vasil, Levski: Biografiia. Sofia, 1967.
Kosev, D. Novaia istoriia Bolgarii: Kurs lektsii. Moscow, 1952. (Translated from Bulgarian.)
References in periodicals archive ?
A Shortly after joining the First Bulgarian Legion, he acquired the nickname "Levski" (the Lion) after performing a spectacular jump over a training pit.
1862 he went to Belgrade to become part of Georgi Rakovski's Bulgarian Legion.
During his participation in the First Bulgarian Legion in Belgrade, Serbia, in 1862, he received the nickname "Levski" - "Lionlike".
The Bulgarian Legion "Anti-Mafia" has sent a letter to EU and NATO Ambassadors in the country to inform them that General Stoimen Stoimenov, National Security Advisor of President, Rosen Plevneliev, has been employed by the Central Committee of the Communist Party during the Communist regime.
Born in the sub-Balkan town of Karlovo to middle class parents, Levski became an Orthodox monk before emigrating to join the two Bulgarian Legions in Serbia and other Bulgarian revolutionary groups.
Ilchev points out that even though it was under the rule of Mihailo Obrenovic that Serbia formed two Bulgarian legions as part of its army headed by Georgi Rakovski in 1862 and 1867, Obrenovic would use the legions purely in Serbia's interest, and would meanwhile negotiate with Greece the partition of Bulgarian-populated regions in Macedonia.

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