Bulgarian Dialects

Bulgarian dialects (Bulgarian: български диалекти, balgarski dialekti, also български говори, balgarski govori or български наречия, balgarski narechiya) are the regional spoken varieties of the Bulgarian language, a South Slavic language. Bulgarian dialectology dates to the 1830s and the pioneering work of Neofit Rilski, Bolgarska gramatika (published 1835 in Kragujevac, Serbia, then Ottoman Empire). Other notable researchers in this field include Marin Drinov, Konstantin Josef Jireček, Lyubomir Miletich, Aleksandar Teodorov-Balan, Stoyko Stoykov.

Bulgarian dialects are part of the South Slavic dialect continuum, linked with Serbian and Macedonian to the west and bordering Albanian, Greek and Turkish to the south, and Romanian to the north.

The dialects of Macedonia were for the most part classified as part of Bulgarian in the older literature. The Bulgarian linguistics continue to treat it as such in. Since the second half of the 20th century, foreign authors have mostly adopted the convention of treating these in terms of a separate Macedonian language, following the codification of Macedonian as the literary standard language of Yugoslav Macedonia. However, some contemporary linguists still consider Macedonian as a dialect of Bulgarian. Macedonian authors in turn tend to treat all dialects spoken in the geographical region of Macedonia as Macedonian, including those spoken in Bulgarian Macedonia. The present article treats all these dialects together, because of their close structural similarity and the fact that many important dialect boundaries intersect both territories.

The main isogloss separating the Bulgarian dialects into Eastern and Western is the Yat border, marking the different mutations of the Old Bulgarian yat form (ѣ, *ě), pronounced as either /ʲa/ or /ɛ/ to the east (byal, but plural beli, "white") and strictly as /ɛ/ to the west of it (bel, plural beli). In order to avoid political issues, many linguists use interchangeably Western Bulgarian and Macedonian in national and geographical contexts, respectively; however, this is not precise because Western Bulgarian dialects include also non-Macedonian dialects while some dialects in the region of Macedonia (Drama-Ser, Solun, and Korca dialects) are classified as Eastern Bulgarian on the basis of the Yat vowel. Bulgarian dialects can be divided into the following dialectal groups and individual dialects:

Eastern Bulgarian dialects:

  • Moesian dialects
    • Shumen dialect
  • Balkan dialects
    • Central Balkan dialect
    • Kotel-Elena-Dryanovo dialect
    • Panagyurishte dialect
    • Pirdop dialect
    • Teteven dialect
    • Erkech dialect
    • Subbalkan dialect
    • Transitional Balkan dialects
  • Rup dialects
    • Strandzha dialect
    • Thracian dialect
    • Hvoyna dialect
    • Chepino dialect
    • Paulician dialect
    • Zlatograd dialect
    • Smolyan dialect
    • Pomak dialect (Greece)
    • Babyak dialect
    • Razlog dialect
    • Serres-Nevrokop dialect
    • Solun dialect

Western Bulgarian dialects:

  • Northwestern Bulgarian dialects
    • Byala Slatina-Pleven dialect
    • Vidin-Lom dialect
  • Southwestern Bulgarian dialects
    • Botevgrad dialect
    • Vratsa dialect
    • Ihtiman dialect
    • Elin Pelin dialect
    • Sofia dialect
    • Samokov dialect
    • Dupnitsa dialect
    • Kyustendil dialect
  • Pirin-Malashevo dialects
    • Blagoevgrad dialect
    • Petrich dialect
    • Pianec-Kamenitsa-Kraishte dialect
    • Malashevo dialect
  • Transitional Bulgarian dialects
    • Tran dialect
    • Breznik dialect
    • Belogradchik dialect
    • Bosilegrad dialect
    • Tsaribrod dialect
  • Dialects from Vardar Macedonia
    (traditionally treated as part of Bulgarian in Bulgarian sources.)
    • Northern dialects
    • Tetovo dialect
    • Veles dialect
    • Prilep-Mariovo dialect
    • Bitola dialect
    • Debar dialect
    • Ohrid-Struga dialect
    • Prespa dialect
    • Korca dialect
  • Dialects from Aegean Macedonia
    (traditionally treated as part of Bulgarian in Bulgarian sources.)
    • Kostur dialect
    • Doyran dialect
    • Lerin dialect
    • Kukush-Voden dialect

Among the traditional diaspora:

  • Banat Bulgarian dialect
  • Wallachian Bulgarian dialects
  • Transylvanian Bulgarian dialects
  • Bulgarian dialects in the former Soviet Union
  • Anatolian dialect

Famous quotes containing the word bulgarian:

    Americans are rather like bad Bulgarian wine: they don’t travel well.
    Bernard Falk (1943–1990)