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Grk i Bulgarin (A Greek and a Bulgarian)

A Poem Written by Konstantin Miladinov



GRK: Blgarine, prost choveche,
Shto tuk stoish, ne se grchish?
Nemash ochi da ne vidish
Kolku slavni se storifme?

BLGARIN: A grkimu star choek,
Kak ti tekna tie zboroi
Da mi velish, da mi kazhvash?
Ya beh slaven i prehvalen
I pak sega sum Bugarin
Ako sakash Bog milostiv
Ke si bidam pak prehvalen.

GRK: Bolgarine ne pazbervish
Ya ti velyam da se uchish
Grtska kniga npefalena
Tukidida, Evripida
Irodota i Pindara.
Kak ke chinish ti bez kniga?
Tvoya kniga ti si nemash
Da se storish uchen choek.
Ako mozhish razberi me
Nauchi se grtska kniga,
Da bideme site grtsi.

BLGARIN: Da se ucham grtska kniga!
Koy se tie shto mi kaza,
Tukidida, Evripida
Irodota i Pindara.
Tie ne se ot nashite
Ni dedo mi, ni prededo;
Yazka tie ne poznavam.
Ako rechesh ti za kniga
Imaf kniga, pak ke imam;
Ala grku ti nikoga
Da ne chekash da se grcha.

GRK: Ya ti davam arna uka
Zashto ti sakam tvoe dobro
Pak ti velyam - pogrchi se;
Ako sakash ti se molam
Toku sade nogrchi se.

BLGARIN: Nemoy, grku, dodevay mi;
Pak ti rekov pak ti velyam
Razberi se, ne se grcha
Ako sakash Bugari se!


Bulgarian, simple person,
Why do you wait, and not Hellenize?
Don't you have eyes to see us
How magnificent we've become?

Hey old Greek man,
How did those words occur to you,
To sermonise to me, to tell me?
I was glorious and famous
And I'm still a Bulgarian now
If you like by the grace of God
I will be famous again.

Bulgarian you just don't understand
I am telling you to study
Famous Greek literature
Thucycdides, Euripides
Herodotos and Pindar.
How can you exist without books?
Books of your own you do not have
To become a learned man.
If you can understand me
Teach yourself with Greek literature
So that we may all be Greeks.

Teach myself Greek literature!
Who are those you told me about,
Thucycdides, Euripides
Herodotos and Pindar.
They are not of my people
Not my grandfather, or my g.grandfather
I do not know them.
If you speak about books
I had books and I'll have them again;
But dear Greek, never
Wait for me to be Hellenized.

I'm giving you good advice
Because I am interested in your welfare
Once again I tell you - become a Greek;
I you want I'll plead with you
But only become a Greek.

Leave me alone, Greek;
I told you again and again
Believe this, I'm not becoming a Greek
If you like become a Bulgarian!



Here is a quotation from a Konstanin Miladinov's letter, dated November 13, 1856, to the Bulgarian Benevolent Society in Odessa, Russia, with an urgent request for money for school needs in Vardar Macedonia ("Dolnata Zemja", as the author of this letter calls it):

"Znaeno e na Vashe rodoljubivo nastojatelstvo, oti sekoj rod sade so svojot jazik mozhit poborgo da se prosvetit, i da se sestit od drugite rodove. Znajte ushte kolku nashata strana izgubi svojot jazik, i kolku kje ostanit nazad od Gorna Bugaria na uchenieto, ako ne zavatit da se uchit na Bugarskiot jazik..." [You know, members of this patriotic board, that each nation can faster educate itself only in its own language and distinguish itself from other peoples. You also know how much our region has lost its language, and how far behind Upper Bulgaria it will fall in education if we do not get started studying the Bulgarian language...]
Signed: Kostadin Miladinov od Ohrit ("Periodichesko spisanie", v. 63 (1902-03), p. 574)



published on the Net by George Filipov