Stip - a city in the eastern part of the Republic of Macedonia, spread along the valley of the river Bregalnica. According to the 2002 census, the city had 40,016 (43,625 with Novo Selo) inhabitants and is the largest city in Eastern Macedonia and the 7th largest city in Macedonia. Stip is the seat of the Municipality of Stip and the center of the East-planning Region. Stip is one of the oldest cities in Macedonia. In 2008, St. Nicholas was named patron saint of the city.
In written documents, the name Astibo is first
mentioned by the ancient chronicler Polyenes in the 3rd century BC.
AD, who reported that the Paeonian kings were crowned in the river
Astibo (today's Bregalnica). Macedonian King Alexander I around 360
BC he annexed this area to the ancient Macedonian empire. Stip is
mentioned in the 1st century AD, during the time of the Roman
emperor Tiberius (14-37) as the Paeonian city of Astibo and was
included among the larger and more important ancient Paeonian cities
in eastern Macedonia. Scientists locate Astibo in the area of
today's old part of the city of Stip, on the eastern slopes of the
hill Isar and the locations Star Konak, Tuzlija and Gorno Maalo. The
city is also noted in Tabula Pјttingemiana (ancient map of the 4th
century) as a settlement, one of the stations on the road to
Stobi-Pautalia (Kyustendil) - Serdika (Sofia).
In late antiquity and in the early Byzantine period, the settlement existed under the name Stipeon, and in the Middle Ages, around the 6th and 7th century, it received the present name Stip. In the Middle Ages, around the end of the 4th century and during the 7th century, during the conquests of the Avars and the Slavs in the Balkans, almost all the late antique and early Byzantine cities were destroyed, including Stipeon. Stip existed during the reign of Samuel, in the period between 976 and 1014, and was later conquered by the Byzantines. In the 9th century, the city was under Bulgarian rule, and after the Battle of Velbuzhd near (Kyustendil), Stip fell under the Serbian ruler Stefan Decanski.
In 1395, Stip finally fell under the rule of the Ottoman Empire and became kaza (nahija) in the composition of the Kyustendil Sandzak. From then until the 17th century, there are few written documents about the fate of Stip.
With the Spanish Inquisition at the beginning of the 16th century, a large number of Sephardic Jews fled to the territory of the Ottoman Empire, and some of them settled in Stip, which can be seen from the Turkish sources from 1519 when 38 Jewish families or 200 lived in Stip. souls.
In a document from 1620, the city is mentioned as an episcopal seat, and in 1661 the famous Turkish travel writer Evliya Çelebi passed through Stip. He described the city in the following words:
"Stip is a Cadillac with a fortress on the hill that guards. In the city there are mosques, baths, a large caravanserai and a small river."
Evliya Çelebi wrote that Stip had 2,240 houses, 24 Muslim temples (mosques and mosques), seven tekkes, seven annas, two baths, one caravan-saraj, eleven schools and one madrasa. The city had a bazaar with 450 craft and trade shops, with a bazaar full of valuable goods from all seven parts of the world.
The French consul Peony noted that in 1800 the city had between 3 and 4,000 inhabitants.
During the Austro-Turkish war, in 1689, Stip was conquered by the Austro-Hungarians, but in 1691 it was captured again by the Turks.
During the Austro-Turkish War, the city suffered great damage. Namely, when entering the city, in the autumn of 1689, by order of General Piccolomini, they first robbed him and then set him on fire. After these sufferings, Stip could not recover until the XIX century, after which it returns to its former glory. The famous French Balkanologist - Ami Boue (1794-1881), visited Stip in the middle of the XIX century and called it a golden city, which then had about 20,000 inhabitants, most of whom were half Christian, a city with a developed city bazaar, with beautiful mosques, many public fountains, etc. During this period, Stip was an economic and cultural center in Eastern Macedonia. In the city there were developed handicrafts from which they stood out: tannery, cobbler, bobbler, shoemaker and others. The merchants-shopkeepers from Stip, spread their goods loaded on horses on the surrounding kazi. Exactly in Stip, there were charlagan's workshops in which poppy was processed.
In 1830, the first school in the vernacular was opened in Stip, and in 1868, Josif Kovachev (1839-1898) opened the first pedagogical school. A little later, in 1872, the first public reading room "Dejatelnost" started operating. At the end of the 19th century, from 1894 to 1896, Goce Delchev, the ideologue of the Macedonian national liberation movement, taught at the school (built in 1872) in Novo Selo.
The Balkan and World Wars
During the Balkan Wars, the Stip area was occupied by the Bulgarian and Serbian armies, and the demarcation line between the two armies was drawn along the river Bregalnica, so that Stip and the villages on the left side were occupied by Bulgaria, which here begins to introduce its administration. The territories on the right side of the river are occupied by Serbia.
The same fate befell this people during the First World War. Among the 58,000 soldiers from Macedonia included in the mobilization, there are many citizens of Stip who participate on many fronts, such as: Krivolak 1915-1916, the Dobrudjani Front in 1916 and the Macedonian Front in 1916. Among the other horrors and consequences of the First World War in Stip and the Stip region are the appearance of infectious diseases, including malaria, typhoid fever, cholera and the terrible Spanish flu.
During the Second World War, on April 6, 1941, Stip was bombed by German planes that took off from bases from Bulgaria. In the first attack, the Sokolana, which housed two military units of the Royal Yugoslavia, was bombed, and in the second, the Isar and the houses in the surrounding neighborhoods, as well as the city hospital. On April 7, 1941, the city was captured by the 73rd German Infantry Division, and on April 18 of the same year, the Bulgarian General Staff received a notification from the command of the 12th German Army that the units of the First Bulgarian Army were being allowed to enter part of Macedonia. The Bulgarian occupying power in Stip was established on April 26, 1941. On March 11, 1943, the Jews from Stip (551 people from 131 families) were deported to the concentration camp "Treblinka", where almost all of them were killed, and only seven were rescued. Immediately after the deportation of the Jews, the fascists destroyed the Jewish quarter in the center of Stip, together with the Jewish school, the synagogue and other buildings. On November 8, 1944, the National Liberation War liberated the city. The citizens of Stip actively participated in the National Liberation War, and about 2,000 fighters joined the resistance against the occupiers. During the occupation, 814 inhabitants lost their lives, of which 88 in a direct fight against the occupiers.
The city of Stip is located in the central part of
Eastern Macedonia. It covers an area of 13.5 km2 and lies at an
altitude of 300 m. The city is divided into many neighborhoods,
among them the Leftists and the Rightists, situated on the left and
right side of the upper course of the river Otinja. The city is
located between the heights of the Isar, Meri and Kumlak. The small
river Otinja (3 km long) flows through the center of Stip and
divides it into two parts. Also, the river Bregalnica passes through
Stip. Otinja flows into the river Bregalnica, in the southwestern
part of the city, in Stipsko Novo Selo. An integral part of the city
of Stip is Novo Selo, which is located in the southern part of the
city, in the gorge of Bregalnica, just behind the Isar, on the road
to Radovish. Novo Selo continues in Kezovica Maalo, which extends to
the mineral geothermal springs Kezovica and L'dzi (with water
temperature between 58 and 62 degrees).
Settlements and neighborhoods
The center is located between the mall and the city church. Isar is a neighborhood on the slopes of the hill of the same name. In the neighborhood Radanski Pat, mostly Roma live. From the rest of the city, the older neighborhoods are: Star Konak, Kadidere, Tuzlija, Gorno Maalo and Novo Selo. Among the newer neighborhoods, built mostly after the Second World War are: November 8 (according to the day of liberation), Senjak (1-4), Prebeg, Duzlak, Peltekovo Imanje, Babi, Levaci, Desnaci, Makedonka, Balkanska, Suitlak, Avdokomanda, Prolet , Railway and others.