Parteniy Zografski

Bulgarian cleric, philologist, and folklorist

Parteniy Zografski (1818 – February 7, 1876) was a 19th-century Bulgarian cleric, philologist, and folklorist from Galičnik in today's North Macedonia, one of the early figures of the Bulgarian National Revival.



  • Our language, as it is well known, is divided into two main dialects, of which one is spoken in Bulgaria and Thrace, and the other one in Macedonia.
  • To promote to the world the Macedonian dialect with all its general and local idioms, as much as we can, we intend to create a Grammar for it, in parallel with the other one; but since that intention may be delayed for a while, now we are describing here in short its main characteristics compared to the other dialect.
  • Not only that the Macedonian dialect should not and cannot be excluded from the common standard language, but it would have been good if it was accepted as its main constituent; since it sounds fuller, smoother and stronger, and in many respects it is more complete and rich. The representatives of that dialect are the southwestern areas in Macedonia.
  • The first and biggest difference between the two dialects is, in our opinion, is the difference in pronunciation or the stress. The Macedonian dialect usually prefers to place the stress in the beginning of the words, and the other one in the end, so in the first dialect you can’t find a word with a stress on the last syllable, while in the latter in most cases the stress is on the last syllable. Here Macedonian dialect is approaching the Serbian dialect.

Description of the Macedonian dialect (1858)

  • In the Macedonian dialect we find the following characteristics:
  1. It doesn’t tolerate the following voiced letters Ж and Ш in front of Д and Т, and in that case they are either softened or they keep their hard pronunciation.
  2. The letter A has always a full and clear pronunciation, and not, as in the other dialect, a silenced and half-sounded one.
  3. E and O do not change their pronunciation ever, unlike in the other dialect they do, the first to И and the second to У.
  4. Ъ and Ь have kept its half-sounded pronunciation much like in the other dialect, and in one sub-dialect they have turned into a full-sounded O, like: Корст, Цорков, Ворв, полн, Ворт, Торга etc, instead of: Кьрст, Цьрков, Вьрт etc.
  5. Ҍ is pronounced as E, always, without any exceptions, and it never sounds as Ѧ, as it does in the other dialect. It if wasn’t for this difference in the pronunciation, this letter could have quite easily be omitted from the New-Bulgarian alphabet. For the time being we put this aside, until we study it better and determine its destiny.
  6. Х is either fully omitted like in: ода, убаво, оро, арно, пишеа or одеа, стоеа and so on, instead of: хода, хубаво, ходеха, стоеха and alike, or it is pronounced as ф: пишеф, читав, праф, фала, фрла instead of пишех, прах, хвала and so on, or finally as в: уво, бьлва and so on, instead of: ухо, бьлха. The rules about this will be described in the Grammar.
  7. The articles defining a locality ов and он, that we have written about earlier in detail, and we will continue to write so we can roll back (negate) some inaccurate opinions that exist about them.
  8. The cases in personal names are better preserved in the Macedonian dialect, compared to the other one, as we will see in the Grammar.
  9. The neuter nouns ending in ле and ре and all possessive nouns in plural end on иња, and not ета, like: поле полиња, море мориња, момче момчиња, книже книжиња.
  10. The third person singular keeps the old suffix т.
  11. The third person plural in the same vein has a different suffix, but it is not a proper place to describe the details of it now.
  12. The Macedonian dialect has verbal adverbs.
  13. The “horned” letter Ѫ in the Macedonian dialect is pronounces as a clear A, and in some places as O, for example: рака, мака, лажа, каде, маж and so on, or рока, мока, пот, ложа and so on, instead of рѪка, мѪка, пѪт etc.
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