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Monument Marin Drinov

Bulevard Tsarigradsko shose 25, 1124 Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Sofia
  • Posted 2 years ago

Marin Stoyanov Drinov was a Bulgarian National Revival historian and philologist who lived and worked in Russia for the most of his life. He was a forerunner of Bulgarian historiography. Drinov was a founder member and the first head of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (formerly the Bulgarian Literary Society).

In 1838, Drinov was born in Panagyurishte. In 1858, he traveled to Russia to further his study. Between 1865 and 1871, he studied history and philology at Kiev and at Moscow State University, and he traveled and worked in Austria and Italy. He became a co-founder and active member of the Bulgarian Literary Society in 1869. Drinov earned a master’s degree and was appointed as a reader of Slavistics at Kharkiv University, where he began working as a regular professor at the end of 1876.

Drinov served as Minister of Popular Enlightenment and Spiritual Affairs under the Russian administration of Bulgaria (1878-1879). Marin Drinov is known for his active participation in the organization of the newly liberated Bulgarian state, as one of the authors of the Tarnovo Constitution, the person who proposed Sofia instead of Tarnovo (favored by Austrian diplomats) as the new Bulgarian capital, and the person who introduced the standardized 32-letter edition of Cyrillic that was used in Bulgaria until the orthographic reform of 1945. He was instrumental in the standardization of the Bulgarian language. He opposed Shapkarev’s suggestion for a mixed eastern and western Bulgarian/Macedonian foundation of the standard language as early as 1870, writing in the journal Makedoniya, “Such an artificial assembly of written language is something inconceivable, unreachable, and never heard of.”  Some current Bulgarian linguists, such as Blagoy Shklifov, have questioned Drinov’s stance.

Drinov is credited with developing the first orthography of the standard Bulgarian language, which was established by a decree issued by Minister of Education Todor Ivanchov in 1899. Since then, the Bulgarian language has undergone three orthographic reforms: in 1921, 1923, and 1945.

Drinov remained in Kharkiv until 1881, carrying on his scientific and pedagogical efforts until his death. He died in town on March 13, 1906, following a protracted battle with TB.

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