Wieś i chłopstwo bułgarskie w XVIII i XIX w.
Bulgarian villages and peasants in the 18th and 19th century
Languages of publication
Feudal Turkish system in the 18th and 19th century was for a longer time in the state of internal crisis which led the Turkish Empire to weakening its position in relation to different European states, firstly to Russia, and then also to weakening its domination over Christian serfs. The territories inhabited by the Bulgarians remained a part of the Ottoman Empire form 1396 to 1878 when Bulgaria emerged as a national state. In the late eighties of the 19th century about 80 per cent of the Bulgarian population was rural. Methods of cultivation in Bulgaria were very primitive. Agricultural machinery was used very little, and mostly on the larger estates. Even common plows were largely wooden. The main crops of predominantly self-sufficient agriculture were cereals; chiefly wheat, rye, barley and oats. Most villages kept communal flocks. Traditional attitudes still prevailed in the social life of the villages. In most villages life was in general frugal but secure. The peasants could grow their own food and depended on the outside world very little. The most famous of all collective institutions in the Balkan was the communal family household known generally as the zadruga. The zadruga had once been the predominant social unit in the countryside but from the middle of the 19th century it was generally on decline.
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