Shumen (Kolarovgrad in the period 1950 - 1965) is a town in northeastern Bulgaria, administrative and economic center of the eponymous municipality of Shoumen and Shoumen district. The city is the tenth largest in the country with a population of 75,442 inhabitants as of December 31, 2019 according to the NSI (85,504 inhabitants at the current address as of December 15, 2019 according to ESGRAON).
Shumen is located in the Shumen field, which is open to the southeast and gradually decreases in height; the western parts of the city lie at about 280 - 300 m above sea level, and the extreme eastern - at 180 - 200 m. The city is located at the foot of the Shumen plateau, which has a very diverse nature. Its ridge rises to 500 m above sea level. Its elevation in relation to the city is about 250 - 300 m.
The small river Poroyna passes through Shumen. 3 km west of the modern town, on a part of the Shumen plateau, is the area of Hisarlaka (or the Old Town), surrounded by steep ravines, in which streams flow all year round.
In Shumen there are several residential complexes and neighborhoods:
residential complexes - Kherson, Dobrudja, Thrace, Boyan Bulgaranov
neighborhoods - Industrial Zone, Grivitsa, White Earth, Everest, Divdyadovo, Macaque, Mutnitsa.
The city's climate is temperate continental. In winter, cold continental air masses freely invade from the north and northeast with strong winds. The winter is relatively cold, the average January temperature is -0.5 ° C, and the summer is hot with an average July temperature of 22 ° C. The average annual number of days with snow cover is between 35 and 40. The lowest temperature in the city was measured in January (-27.4 ° C), and the highest - in August (45.0 ° C). The amount of precipitation in the city is about 600 mm per year and is close to the national average. Most precipitation usually falls in May and June, and the least in September. The proximity of the Black Sea has almost no effect on the city's climate.
Antiquity and Antiquity
The first information about Shumen is from the Stone-Copper Age. Excavations by Raphael Popov in 1907 identify the settlement mound Kodjadermen, inhabited during the Middle and Late Chalcolithic (approximately the period 4500 - 4000 BC). It has a diameter of 60 m and a height of 5 m, and is located 6 km north of the town, to the left of the road Shumen - Targovishte.
There is also information from the Early Iron Age - XII century BC, when the first fortification surrounding the accessible parts of the fortress was dated. It has a wall thickness of about 2 meters, built of untreated quarry stones. In the 5th century BC, a second wall was built in front of the first.
In the 2nd century the Romans built a military castle on the ruins of the Thracian fortress. The construction of the wall is already soldered with mortar; a tower was built above the gate; on the weakly fortified sections of the wall are also built a square tower to the west and a semicircular one to the south.
Early Middle Ages
In the IV - V century the whole hill was fortified with a new
wall and 9 towers were built on it, to the south and west the old
and the new walls are a few meters apart. From this period are known
the remains of two churches - a single-nave basilica from the IV
century and a three-nave basilica from the end of the V century or
the beginning of the VI century.
Archaeological excavations conducted in 1957, 1961 to 1987 established the chronological periods, way of life and livelihood of the inhabitants of the fortress, known to us from the medieval inscriptions found here about the town of Shumen. In the VIII - X century the fortification was renovated and for this purpose the foundations of the Byzantine wall and towers were used, to which a new wall with two towers was built from the north-northeast - a small but perfectly protected area. Little known even to prominent archaeologists is the fact that 600 meters west of the medieval city there was, albeit for a short period (VII - VIII century), earthen Bulgarian fortification with a rectangular shape, oriented in the directions of the world on an area of about 20 acres.
The Middle Ages
The old Bulgarian fortification from the 7th - 10th century developed in a feudal town with a castle with adjacent inner and outer fortification belt, which can be counted 28 towers and bastions, three gates and 5 small porticos, with many churches and workshops (12th - 14th century). ).
Here is found the inscription of Tsar Ivan Shishman, mentioning his visit to Shumen:
"... appointed by God, I, Tsar of Bulgaria Ivan Shishman, son of the great Tsar Ivan Alexander, came to the city of Shumen by royal favor in the name of the king of heavenly Christ, and I, Sraco wrote, the grandson of the great epicurean Sratsimir, these words."
It was first mentioned as Simeonis (Shimeonis) in 1153 by the Andalusian-Sicilian traveler Idrisi, who described it as a large city with a crowded market. According to Konstantin Irechek and Georgi Dzhumaliev, the origin of the name Simeonis is from that of Tsar Simeon. In the 12th - 14th century Shumen was a significant military, administrative and economic center, displacing even the old capital Veliki Preslav, developing outside the fortress. The city fell under Turkish rule after a long and prolonged siege in 1388, finally ceased to exist after the campaign of Vladislav III Jagiello (Varnenchik) in 1444.
In the medieval town of Shumen, the main religion is Orthodox Christianity, as evidenced by the seven churches found in the outlines of the fortress walls, cut, albeit in small numbers, commemorative coins depicting a cross, an angel and numerous single finds of Orthodox crosses, as well as the image their rings and other household items found in graves and homes. Change came only after the final conquest of the city by the Ottoman Turks in the XV century.
In the Ottoman Empire. Revival
After the Middle Ages, the Turks used the ruins of the city to build several baths and mosques, the Bezisten (1529), the Clock Tower with a fountain (1740) and the Tombul Mosque (1774) opposite it. In the 17th - 18th century Shumen was turned into a strongly fortified military town, with a large garrison in the fortress, it was inhabited by many Turks, Jews, Tatars, Armenians. It is mentioned by different names such as Shumen, Shumna, Shumular, Sumunum, and in the last centuries of the rule - Shumen. According to Konstantin Irecek, during the Ottoman conquest there were 800 houses in Shumen, and in the 17th century they already numbered 4000-5000.
In the 19th century, Shumen was a communications hub of paramount importance in the Ottoman Empire. In 1820, Porter wrote that in Shumen there was "a suburb inhabited by its Christian inhabitants."
During the Ottoman rule (XVIII and especially XIX century) the city developed as a major craft center. On May 11, 1813, the first celebration of the Holy Brothers Cyril and Methodius in Bulgaria took place in the town, as well as the first theatrical performance. In 1828 the first cell school for girls was established, and in 1856 the first girls' class school and community center. In 1846 the first school amateur groups were founded, in 1850 the first Bulgarian symphony orchestra was founded. In 1856 the first community centers in Bulgaria were founded - Svishtov (January), Shumen (in the spring) and Lom.
After the Crimean War, Crimean Tatars settled near Shumen.
According to a report by American missionaries who visited Shumen in 1857, the city had a population of 40,000, of whom 75% were Turks, 20% Bulgarians, and the rest Jews and Armenians. They note several Bulgarian schools with a total of 700 students, as well as the bad reputation of the Greek bishop.
After the Liberation
After the Liberation of Bulgaria, the city initially declined due to the loss of craft markets, the emigration of many Ottomans and relatively cheap and high-quality Western industrial goods competing with local ones, but gradually recovered, becoming a regional and county center. At the outbreak of the Balkan War in 1912, 35 people from Shumen were volunteers in the Macedonian-Edirne militia. With the advancement of technology, electricity gradually began to enter. It was originally installed in the Military Club in the city (1919). In September 1927, the first power plant began operating in the town of Shumen.
Immediately after the September 9 coup in 1944, a serious skirmish broke out in the city when the Communists tried to take over one of the police stations.
Shumen during socialism
In the period between January 29, 1950 - July 29, 1965 the city was named Kolarovgrad.
In the autumn of 1951 the Sofia Military School was relocated to the town of Shumen. By decree of the Presidium of the National Assembly № 213 of April 29, 1952, the battle flag of the school was handed over. In addition to the training of artillerymen, new specialties in "Radar" were opened, the school became a university and trained engineering personnel for anti-aircraft missile and radio engineering troops. In 1969 at the Higher People's Military Artillery School (VNVAU) "Georgi Dimitrov" was established Secondary Sergeant Military Artillery School (SSVAU), and in 1972 a new specialty was opened - "Computing and automated control systems for troops" ) “. Founded in 1919, the Pedagogical Institute for Junior High School Teachers became in 1964 a branch faculty of Sofia University. On its basis in 1971 the Higher Pedagogical Institute was opened.
In 1981, one of the largest monumental monuments in Bulgaria - "Creators of the Bulgarian state" was built in the Shumen Plateau Nature Park. Large-scale construction took place in the 1980s in view of the forthcoming visit of the diplomatic corps, but changes in the late 1980s halted the process. The largest hotel-restaurant complex "Shumen" in the city was built. Construction of a trolleybus line began, which was later abandoned.
Noisy in democracy
After 1989 a mall was built in Shumen - the Regional Department Store (RUM) was modernized and a City Center was established. The emblematic for the city restaurants with the hotel part "The Corners" and "The Glass" have been rebuilt and restored. A number of new restaurants and hotels have been built in a contemporary style. After Bulgaria's accession to the European Union, the main boulevards, streets and roads have been asphalted. The pedestrian zone from the center through the city garden to the railway station has been repaired and modernized.