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Bulgarian fabrics - traditions and development, part 3



Folk costumes carry elements of the clothes of Slavs, Thracians and Proto-


Българските тъкани - традиции и развитие

Folk clothing is an important part of folk culture, with the help of which ethnographic, historical and social processes can be clarified. The main function of clothing is utilitarian. It is expressed in the purpose of Bulgarian folk clothing to protect the human body. It also performs other functions, the most important of which is ethnic. Through clothing, Bulgarians expressed their belonging to the Bulgarian nation. It shows the nationality, place of residence, sex, age, marital status, occupation, social affiliation, religion of the wearer. The clothing is created depending on the nature of the production, both in the whole country and in the separate areas. In the cattle-breeding areas the clothes are mostly woolen. Where hemp and flax raw materials are easily extracted, the respective textiles predominate. Under favorable conditions for growing cotton in the Thracian fields, the clothes of the Thracians are mostly cotton. With the increased production of silk in the Svilengrad region, women replace the narrow black woolen skirts with wide gathered dresses made of colorful silk fabrics, and men wear silk anthers instead of woolen abi. Previous ethnographic studies on the culture of the Slavs and especially of the Bulgarian folk costumes reveal the Slavic basis of the Bulgarian national dress. (Veleva, 1983, 235 et seq.). There are elements in the Bulgarian folk clothing that can be accepted as a legacy of the ancient Thracians, Daco-Moesians and others. Some of them are inherited by virtue of the local production of textile materials for clothing, others due to the requirements of the geographical environment and climatic conditions in the new settlements of the Bulgarian Slavs. A group of elements of the clothing of the pre-Slavic population of the Balkan Peninsula seems to have sunk into the Bulgarian costumes unchanged due to their appropriate adaptation in material and form to the local working and living conditions - e.g. the Bulgarian Yamurluk (Veleva, 1965, 72). One of the main types of costumes, widespread in the country and which give the characteristic appearance of the traditional Bulgarian folk clothing - women's two-apron and men's white costume costume, have a proven Slavic origin. The limited female distribution a one-apron costume can be considered a remnant of ancient Slavic clothing. The prototype of the other two main types of women's costumes, the sukmane and the sayana, can also be found in some old Slavic clothing. Slavic character also flows from the rich fabric and embroidery ornaments of the clothes (Veleva, 1965, 66 - 67). The merging of the Proto-Bulgarians and the Slavs into a common state also had an impact on the development of the folk costume. Due to the fact that the military leadership and the defense of the state were entrusted to the proto-Bulgarians, their clothing was preserved and gradually mixed with the military clothing of the Slavs. And the Slavic women's clothing, as more functional in the environment of sedentary life, gradually prevailed over the proto-Bulgarian traditional women's costume, which according to the answers of Pope Nicholas in the polls of the Bulgarians (886) was composed of pants and outerwear (Naslednikova, 1969, 13).

Българските тъкани - традиции и развитие

According to the cut and the way of dressing the outer garments, the women's suits are divided into four groups: two-apron, one-apron, sukman and sayan. According to the shapes of the outer garments and the color of their fabrics, men's costumes are divided into two groups: white and black (Vakarelski, 1974, 230, 246; Tseleva, 1983, 247 et seq.). The main composition of the women's two-apron costume includes a shirt and two aprons. The shirt is mostly with sets around the neckline and at the ends of the sleeves, hence the name brchanka. Only in some regions (Vidin, Razgrad, Popovo, Provadia and Preslav) the two-apron costume is associated with the tunic-like shirt (Veleva, 1983, 248). While the front apron does not show much variety in cut, colors and names, the rear curtain has numerous options. In Northwestern Bulgaria it is gathered, short and strongly ornamented and is called woolen, wrinkle, tukmenik. In Central Northern Bulgaria it is called peshtemal, the variety decreases and the length increases. In Central Northern Bulgaria it is also called kurlyanka, and in the Northeastern - okrel (Preslav region) and zaveshka (Provadia region), as the length is equal to the front apron and becomes one color. The main composition of the two-apron costume includes a belt.

Българските тъкани - традиции и развитие

The two-apron costume was widespread in the second half of the XIX century and the beginning of the XX century in the Danube plain, as in many places it is the only regular clothing (Ruse, Razgrad, Pleven, Nikopol, Svishtov, Vidin), and in other areas it is seasonal - summer. According to research, this type of clothing was once much more widespread - Kardzhali, Gyumyurjin, Western Rhodopes and Rila, where it was replaced by more advanced costumes, such as sukmane and Sayan (Veleva, 1983, 249). The cloth costume covers the central, mainly mountainous regions of the country and partly plains: Stara Planina, Srednogorieto, Rozovata dolina, Vitosha, Rila, the Middle Rhodopes, Sakar, Strandzha and Southeastern Thrace. The costume is based on a long white tunic-like shirt, on which a sukman is worn and belted the waist, with meeting or overlapping fronts, with straight outlines, with streaks of black braids on the edges of the seams, turned into linear ornaments. The black or black belt, wrapped tightly around the waist, also belongs to the black-clad costume for men.

Author: Stefan Bonev

Sources: Hr. Vakarelski, "Ethnography of Bulgaria"

Българските тъкани - традиции и развитие


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