In the early 8th century, the Arab Caliphate attempted to invade Europe, but Arab troops were defeated at Constantinople by the armies of Byzantium and Kan Tervel, the son of Khan Asparuh. This has stopped Arabs from invading Europe for 800 years. Under Tervel’s rule, Bulgaria expanded its territories further south.
In 809, the Bulgarian Khan Krum conquered the city of Serdika (the present Bulgarian capital Sofia) and further expanded the territories of Bulgaria and at that time the country was one of the greatest powers in the known world.
Meanwhile, the Bulgarians slowly merged with the Thracians and the Slavs living in the territory of Greater Bulgaria, and these three cultures slowly created a common Bulgarian identity and nationality.
In the 9th-10th century, when King Simeon was seated on the Bulgarian throne, Bulgaria became a kingdom (empire), entered its “golden age of Bulgarian culture” and this culture spread to Byzantium as well as to Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and other countries.
Between 1018-1165, Bulgaria fell under Byzantine slavery, but managed to regain its independence. Then came the period known as the Second Bulgarian Kingdom. It prospered and came the Second Golden Age of Bulgarian Culture.
During the Ottoman invasion of the Balkans in the 14th century, Bulgaria was conquered. The Ottoman rule over Bulgaria lasted for almost five centuries. During this time the Bulgarians are trying to get rid of the foreign yoke with several unsuccessful uprisings. These times gave birth to many Bulgarian national heroes, such as Vasil Levski, Hristo Botev, Georgi Rakovski, Hadji Dimitar, Stefan Karadzha, Lyuben Karavelov and many others.
In March 3, 1878, a treaty was signed, which provided for the restoration of Bulgarian independence. Since then we have been walking slowly along our slow and thorny path of recovery and rebirth.
In 1908, the Principality of Bulgaria gained full independence under King Ferdinand I.
In 1944, at the end of World War II, Russian troops invaded Bulgaria, pushing for regime change. Then the state was transformed from a monarchy into a “people’s republic”. By 1989, the state was under communist regime.
At the end of the 20th century, Bulgaria was entering a transition from communism to democracy. In 2007, it became part of the European Union.