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This map shows the regions of the world where Bulgarian is commonly spoken (red circle). Bulgarian is in the South Slavic subfamily of Slavic languages that descended from the Balto-Slavic branches of Indo-European. Bulgarian is most closely related to modern Slovenian, Sebo-Croatian, and Macedonian. It is also closely related to East Slavic languages like Ukrainian, Belarusian, and Russian, and to West Slavic languages like Sorbian, Polish, Slovak, and Czech. The Slavic languages are so similar that scholars think the languages did not diverge from each other until about 800 CE. The oldest sample of South Slavic language surviving today is a Bible written in Old Church Slavonic (also called Old Bulgarian), which dates from the time of the missionaries Cyril and Methodius (about 850 CE). Modern Bulgarian has borrowed about 100 words from Turkish for everyday vocabulary, and its literary language trades vocabulary with Russian, with each language giving and taking loanwords from the other. One testament to the stamina of Bulgarian is that, even after a series of non-Bulgarian races have invaded the area, the conquerors have always been absorbed linguistically into the Bulgarian language.


Daniel M. Short originally created this map and the other Indo-European language charts for his website at http://www.danshort.com/. I reproduce these images here with the author's permission, but they are copyrighted by Daniel Short as of 2002. These charts should not be reproduced or reused without Mr. Short's approval. You may contact him at danshort@gte.net for more information. These images are not public domain.

 

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Copyright Dr. L. Kip Wheeler 1998-2017. Permission is granted for non-profit, educational, and student reproduction. Last updated January 5, 2017. Contact: kwheeler@cn.edu Please e-mail corrections, suggestions, or comments to help me improve this site. Click here for credits, thanks, and additional copyright information.