The Codex Zographensis is one of the oldest manuscripts in the Old Bulgarian language, dated from the late 10th or early 11th century
Cyrillic
Example of the Cyrillic alphabet: excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik" written in Old Slavonic, 1360
Map of the Bulgarian dialects within Bulgaria
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Extent of Bulgarian dialects according to the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences shown encompassing the Eastern South Slavic dialects. Subregions are differentiated by pronunciation of man and tooth.
A page from the Gospel of Miroslav, Serbian medieval manuscript, a 12th-century Byzantine-Slavonic book, National Library of Serbia.
Areas of Eastern South Slavic languages.
The Introduction of the Slavonic Liturgy in Great Moravia (1912), by Alphonse Mucha, The Slav Epic
Bulgarian cursive alphabet
"Simeon I of Bulgaria, the Morning Star of Slavonic Literature". (1923), by Alphonse Mucha, The Slav Epic

The term Old Bulgarian (старобългарски, Altbulgarisch) is the only designation used by Bulgarian-language writers.

- Old Church Slavonic

Old Bulgarian (9th to 11th centuries, also referred to as "Old Church Slavonic") – a literary norm of the early southern dialect of the Proto-Slavic language from which Bulgarian evolved. Saints Cyril and Methodius and their disciples used this norm when translating the Bible and other liturgical literature from Greek into Slavic.

- Bulgarian language
The Codex Zographensis is one of the oldest manuscripts in the Old Bulgarian language, dated from the late 10th or early 11th century

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Example of the Cyrillic script. Excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik". Written in 1360.

Cyrillic script

Writing system used for various languages across Eurasia and is used as the national script in various Slavic, Turkic, Mongolic, Uralic, Caucasian and Iranic-speaking countries in Southeastern Europe, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, North Asia, and East Asia.

Writing system used for various languages across Eurasia and is used as the national script in various Slavic, Turkic, Mongolic, Uralic, Caucasian and Iranic-speaking countries in Southeastern Europe, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, North Asia, and East Asia.

Example of the Cyrillic script. Excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik". Written in 1360.
Cyrillic Script Monument in Antarctica
View of the cave monastery near the village of Krepcha, Opaka Municipality in Bulgaria. Here is found the oldest Cyrillic inscription, dated 921.
A page from Азбука (Букварь) (ABC (Reader)), the first Russian language textbook, printed by Ivan Fyodorov in 1574. This page features the Cyrillic alphabet.
A page from the Church Slavonic Grammar of Meletius Smotrytsky (1619)
Letters Ge, De, I, I kratkoye, Me, Te, Tse, Be and Ve in upright (printed) and cursive (handwritten) variants. (Top is set in Georgia font, bottom in Odessa Script.)
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These additional letters were used for Old Church Slavonic sounds not found in Greek.

Slavic languages: Belarusian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Russian, Rusyn, Serbo-Croatian (Standard Serbian, Bosnian, and Montenegrin), Ukrainian

Balto-Slavic language tree.

Slavic languages

The Slavic languages, also known as the Slavonic languages, are Indo-European languages spoken primarily by the Slavic peoples or their descendants.

The Slavic languages, also known as the Slavonic languages, are Indo-European languages spoken primarily by the Slavic peoples or their descendants.

Balto-Slavic language tree.
Ethnographic Map of Slavic and Baltic Languages
Baška tablet, 11th century, Krk, Croatia.
14th-century Novgorodian children were literate enough to send each other letters written on birch bark.
10th–11th century Codex Zographensis, canonical monument of Old Church Slavonic
Map and tree of Slavic languages, according to Kassian and A. Dybo
West Slav tribes in 9th–10th centuries
Linguistic maps of Slavic languages
Map of all areas where the Russian language is the language spoken by the majority of the population.

Of these, 10 have at least one million speakers and official status as the national languages of the countries in which they are predominantly spoken: Russian, Belarusian and Ukrainian (of the East group), Polish, Czech and Slovak (of the West group) and Bulgarian and Macedonian (eastern dialects of the South group), and Serbo-Croatian and Slovene (western dialects of the South group).

Old Church Slavonic

Hemisphere view

Russian language

East Slavic language mainly spoken across Russia.

East Slavic language mainly spoken across Russia.

Hemisphere view
Competence of Russian in countries of the former Soviet Union (except Russia), 2004
Percentage of people in Ukraine with Russian as their native language (according to a 2001 census) (by region)
A page from Azbuka (Alphabet book), the first East Slavic printed textbook. Printed by Ivan Fyodorov in 1574 in Lviv. This page features the Cyrillic script.
Russian vowel chart by
This page from an "ABC" book printed in Moscow in 1694 shows the letter П.
The Ostromir Gospels of 1056 is the second oldest East Slavic book known, one of many medieval illuminated manuscripts preserved in the Russian National Library.

Also, Russian has notable lexical similarities with Bulgarian due to a common Church Slavonic influence on both languages, but because of later interaction in the 19th and 20th centuries, Bulgarian grammar differs markedly from Russian.

The vocabulary (mainly abstract and literary words), principles of word formations, and, to some extent, inflections and literary style of Russian have been also influenced by Church Slavonic, a developed and partly Russified form of the South Slavic Old Church Slavonic language used by the Russian Orthodox Church.

Balto-Slavic languages.

South Slavic languages

The South Slavic languages are one of three branches of the Slavic languages.

The South Slavic languages are one of three branches of the Slavic languages.

Balto-Slavic languages.
Areas where Eastern South Slavic dialects are spoken:

The first South Slavic language to be written (also the first attested Slavic language) was the variety of the Eastern South Slavic spoken in Thessaloniki, now called Old Church Slavonic, in the ninth century.

Bulgarian – (ISO 639-1 code: bg; ISO 639-2 code: bul; SIL code: bul; Linguasphere: 53-AAA-hb)

Bulgaria

Country in Southeast Europe.

Country in Southeast Europe.

Odrysian golden wreath in the National History Museum
Knyaz Boris I meeting the disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius.
The walls of Tsarevets fortress in Veliko Tarnovo, the capital of the second empire
The Battle of Nicopolis in 1396 marked the end of medieval Bulgarian statehood.
The Russo-Bulgarian defence of Shipka Pass in 1877
Borders of Bulgaria according to the preliminary Treaty of San Stefano
Tsar Boris III
Georgi Dimitrov, leader of the Bulgarian Communist Party from 1946 to 1949
Topography of Bulgaria
Bulgarian Black Sea Coast
The Pirin mountain range
Lacerta viridis in Ropotamo, one of Bulgaria's 16 biosphere reserves
Independence Square in Sofia: The headquarters of the Presidency (right), the National Assembly (centre) and the Council of Ministers (left).
Mikoyan MiG-29 jet fighters of the Bulgarian Air Force
Historical development of GDP per capita
Economic growth (green) and unemployment (blue) statistics since 2001
Tree map of Bulgarian exports in 2016
The launch of BulgariaSat-1 by SpaceX
Trakia motorway
Population trend since 1960
Population pyramid of Bulgaria in 2017
The Rectorate of Sofia University
Kuker in Lesichovo
Christo's Mastaba in Hyde Park, London
Grigor Dimitrov at the 2015 Italian Open
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Sofia

Bulgarian is the only language with official status and native for % of the population.

The schools' emphasis on Christian scriptures made the Bulgarian Empire a centre of Slavic culture, bringing Slavs under the influence of Christianity and providing them with a written language.

A page from the Zograf Codex with text of the Gospel of Luke

Glagolitic script

Oldest known Slavic alphabet.

Oldest known Slavic alphabet.

A page from the Zograf Codex with text of the Gospel of Luke
The Baška tablet, found in the 19th century on Krk, conventionally dated to about 1100.
The first page of the Gospel of Mark from the 10th–11th century Codex Zographensis, found in the Zograf Monastery in 1843.
The first page of the Gospel of John from the Codex Zographensis.
In a book printed in 1591, Angelo Rocca attributed the Glagolitic script to Saint Jerome.
Glagolitic script in the Zagreb Cathedral
The last Glagolitic entry in the baptismal register of the Omišalj parish on the island of Krk by the parishioner Nicholas in 1817.
The Lord's Prayer shown in (from left) round, angular, and cursive versions of Glagolitic script.

The brothers decided to translate liturgical books into the contemporary Slavic language understandable to the general population (now known as Old Church Slavonic).

In the languages spoken now where Glagolitic was once used, the script is known as глаголица (romanized as glagolitsa and glagolica, respectively) in Bulgarian, Macedonian and Russian; glagoljica in Croatian and Serbian; hlaholice in Czech; głagolica in Polish; hlaholika in Slovak; and glagolica in Slovene.

Cyrillic letter yat, set in several fonts. Note that in cursive writing, the small yat has a considerably different shape.

Yat

Thirty-second letter of the old Cyrillic alphabet.

Thirty-second letter of the old Cyrillic alphabet.

Cyrillic letter yat, set in several fonts. Note that in cursive writing, the small yat has a considerably different shape.
Bulgarian "yat border".
Pre-revolution typewriter with Yat on the bottom row, between Ч and С.
Cover of 1880 edition of Turgenev's Fathers and Sons, with yat in the title; in modern orthography, дѣти is spelled дети.
In 1914, Serbian philologist Aleksandar Belić's map showed the contemporary Serbian point of view where the Yat border separated Serbian from Bulgarian.

One explanation is that the dialect of Thessaloniki (on which the Old Church Slavonic literary language was based), and other South Slavic dialects shifted from to independently from the Northern and Western branches.

бял / бели in Bulgarian (бел / бели in Western dialects)

Officers from Bulgarian hussar regiment in Russia (1776–1783)

Bulgarians

Bulgarians (българи, ) are a nation and South Slavic ethnic group native to Bulgaria and Southeastern Europe.

Bulgarians (българи, ) are a nation and South Slavic ethnic group native to Bulgaria and Southeastern Europe.

Officers from Bulgarian hussar regiment in Russia (1776–1783)
Cyrillic alphabet of the medieval Old Bulgarian language
Map of the Bulgarian Exarchate (1870–1913). The Ottomans required a threshold of two thirds of positive votes of the Orthodox population to include a region into this jurisdiction.
Bulgarian peach kompot – non alcoholic clear juice obtained by cooking fruit
Kukeri from the area of Burgas
Girls celebrating Lazaruvane from Gabrа, Sofia Province
Map of A. Scobel, Andrees Allgemeiner Handatlas, 1908
Distribution of the Balkan peoples in 1911, Encyclopædia Britannica
Ethnic groups in the Balkans and Asia Minor by William R. Shepherd, 1911
Distribution of European peoples in 1914 according to L. Ravenstein
Swiss ethnographic map of Europe published in 1918 by Juozas Gabrys
Percentage of Pomaks by first language according to the 1965 Census excluding Bulgarian
Distribution of Bulgarians in Odessa Oblast, Ukraine according to the 2001 census
Distribution of Bulgarians by first language in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, Ukraine according to the 2001 census
Distribution of predominant ethnic groups in Bulgaria according to the 2011 census
Distribution of Bulgarians in Romania according to the 2002 census
Distribution of Bulgarians in Moldova according to the 2004 census

The establishment of a new state molded the various Slav, Bulgar and earlier or later populations into the "Bulgarian people" of the First Bulgarian Empire speaking a South Slavic language.

The development of Old Church Slavonic literacy in the country had the effect of preventing the assimilation of the South Slavs into neighbouring cultures and it also stimulated the development of a distinct ethnic identity.