Example of the Cyrillic script. Excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik". Written in 1360.
Cyrillic Script Monument in Antarctica
Example of the Cyrillic alphabet: excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik" written in Old Slavonic, 1360
View of the cave monastery near the village of Krepcha, Opaka Municipality in Bulgaria. Here is found the oldest Cyrillic inscription, dated 921.
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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 Gospel of Miroslav, Serbian medieval manuscript, a 12th-century Byzantine-Slavonic book, National Library of Serbia.
A page from the Church Slavonic Grammar of Meletius Smotrytsky (1619)
The Introduction of the Slavonic Liturgy in Great Moravia (1912), by Alphonse Mucha, The Slav Epic
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.)
"Simeon I of Bulgaria, the Morning Star of Slavonic Literature". (1923), by Alphonse Mucha, The Slav Epic
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Alternate variants of lowercase (cursive) Cyrillic letters: Б/б, Д/д, Г/г, И/и, П/п, Т/т, Ш/ш. 
Default Russian (Eastern) forms on the left.
Alternate Bulgarian (Western) upright forms in the middle. 
Alternate Serbian/Macedonian (Southern) italic forms on the right.
See also: 
Cyrillic cursive.svg Special Cyrillics BGDPT.svg

These additional letters were used for Old Church Slavonic sounds not found in Greek.

- Cyrillic script

Both schools originally used the Glagolitic alphabet, though the Cyrillic script developed early on at the Preslav Literary School, where it superseded Glagolitic as official in Bulgaria in 893.

- Old Church Slavonic
Example of the Cyrillic script. Excerpt from the manuscript "Bdinski Zbornik". Written in 1360.

14 related topics with Alpha

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

Glagolitic script

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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).

Both the Glagolitic and Cyrillic alphabets were used until 13th-14th century in Bulgaria.

First Bulgarian Empire in 850

First Bulgarian Empire

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Medieval Bulgar-Slavic and later Bulgarian state that existed in Southeastern Europe between the 7th and 11th centuries AD. It was founded in 680–681 after part of the Bulgars, led by Asparuh, moved south to the northeastern Balkans.

Medieval Bulgar-Slavic and later Bulgarian state that existed in Southeastern Europe between the 7th and 11th centuries AD. It was founded in 680–681 after part of the Bulgars, led by Asparuh, moved south to the northeastern Balkans.

First Bulgarian Empire in 850
First Bulgarian Empire in 850
Slavic tribes and states in Early Middle Ages
The Bulgar colonies after the fall of Old Great Bulgaria in the 7th century.
Zones of control by Slavic tribes and Bulgars in the late 7th century
Part of the Pliska fortress.
Territorial expansion during the reign of Krum
Bulgaria under Presian
Bulgarian Empire during the reign of Simeon I
Emperor Simeon I: The Morning Star of Slavonic Literature, painting by Alfons Mucha
Bulgaria under the rule of Emperor Samuel
Samuel's Fortress in Ohrid
Above: The Byzantines defeat Samuel at Kleidion; below: the death of Samuel, Manasses Chronicle
Khan Omurtag was the first Bulgarian ruler known to have claimed divine origin, Madrid Skylitzes
The symbol ıYı is associated with the Dulo clan and the First Empire
A replica of a Bulgarian sabre found near the town of Varbitsa
A battle scene of the Byzantine–Bulgarian war of 894–896, Madrid Skylitzes
A pendant of the Preslav treasure
Slavic mythology: Sadko (1876) by Ilya Repin
The Pliska rosette dated from the pagan period has seven fingers representing the Classical planets
Bulgarian soldiers kill Christians during the persecutions, Menologion of Basil II
Baptism of Boris I and his court, painting by Nikolai Pavlovich
A medieval icon of Saint Clement of Ohrid, a high-ranking official of the Bulgarian Church, scholar, writer and enlightener of the Bulgarians and the Slavs
Expansion of Bogomilism in medieval Europe
Culture of the First Bulgarian Empire
The ruins of Pliska, the first capital of Bulgaria
The Madara Rider
Early Christian reliefs
Ceramic icon of Saint Theodore, Preslav ceramics, c. 900.
The Old Bulgarian alphabet
A page with the Alphabet Prayer by Constantine of Preslav

The ruling Bulgars and other non-Slavic tribes in the empire gradually mixed and adopted the prevailing Slavic language, thus gradually forming the Bulgarian nation from the 7th to the 10th century.

The Christianization of Bulgaria, the establishment of Old Bulgarian as a language of the state and the church under Boris I, and the creation of the Cyrillic script in the country, were the main means to the final formation of the Bulgarian nation in the 9th century; this included Macedonia, where the Bulgarian khan, Kuber, established a state existing in parallel with Khan Asparuh's Bulgarian Empire.

"Saints Cyril and Methodius holding the Cyrillic alphabet," a mural by Bulgarian iconographer Z. Zograf, 1848, Troyan Monastery

Cyril and Methodius

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Cyril (born Constantine, 826–869) and Methodius (815–885) were two brothers and Byzantine Christian theologians and missionaries.

Cyril (born Constantine, 826–869) and Methodius (815–885) were two brothers and Byzantine Christian theologians and missionaries.

"Saints Cyril and Methodius holding the Cyrillic alphabet," a mural by Bulgarian iconographer Z. Zograf, 1848, Troyan Monastery
Cyril and Methodius, painting by Jan Matejko, 1885
Saints Cyril and Methodius in Rome. Fresco in San Clemente
Saint Cyril and Methodius by Stanislav Dospevski, Bulgarian painter
The Baška tablet is an early example of the Glagolitic from Croatia
A cartoon about Saints Cyril and Methodius from Bulgaria in 1938. The caption reads : Brother Cyril, go tell those who are inside to learn the alphabet so they know freedom (свобода) and anarchy (слободия) are not the same.
Saints Cyril and Methodius procession
Basilica of St.Cyril and Methodius in Moravian Velehrad, Czech Republic
Cross Procession in Khanty-Mansiysk on Saints Cyril and Methodius Day in May 2006
Inauguration of the monument to Saints Cyril and Methodius in Saratov on Slavonic Literature and Culture Day
Thessaloniki - monument of the two Saints gift from the Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Bulgaria - Statue of the two Saints in front of the SS. Cyril and Methodius National Library in Sofia
Bulgaria - Statue of the two Saints in front of the National Palace of Culture in Sofia
North Macedonia - The monument in Ohrid
North Macedonia - Statue of Cyril and Methodius near the Stone Bridge in Skopje
Czech Republic - Statue of Saints Cyril and Methodius at the Charles Bridge in Prague
Czech Republic - Saints Cyril and Methodius monument in Mikulčice
Czech Republic - Statue of Saint Methodius at the Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc in Moravia
Ukraine - The monument in Kiev
Russia - the monument in Khanty-Mansiysk
Serbia - the monument to Saints Cyril and Methodius in Belgrade
Opening of Cyril and Methodius monument in Donetsk
Statue, Saints Cyril and Methodius, Třebíč, Czech Republic

They are credited with devising the Glagolitic alphabet, the first alphabet used to transcribe Old Church Slavonic.

There they and scholar Saint Clement of Ohrid devised the Cyrillic script on the basis of the Glagolitic.

Icon of Saint Naum

Saint Naum

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Saint Naum (Bulgarian and Macedonian: Свети Наум, Sveti Naum), also known as Naum of Ohrid or Naum of Preslav (c.

Saint Naum (Bulgarian and Macedonian: Свети Наум, Sveti Naum), also known as Naum of Ohrid or Naum of Preslav (c.

Icon of Saint Naum
Southeastern Europe in the 9th century.
Monastery of Saint Naum, resting place of Saint Naum, located in North Macedonia

He was among the disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius and is associated with the creation of the Glagolitic and Cyrillic script.

For the next 22 years, he worked with Cyril and Methodius and other missionaries in translating the Bible into Old Church Slavonic and promoted it in Great Moravia and Principality of Lower Pannonia.

Saint George's Cathedral, Istanbul, Turkey

Eastern Orthodox Church

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Second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptized members.

Second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptized members.

Saint George's Cathedral, Istanbul, Turkey
Christ Pantocrator, sixth century, Saint Catherine's Monastery, Sinai; the oldest known icon of Christ, in one of the oldest monasteries in the world
Emperor Constantine presents a representation of the city of Constantinople as tribute to an enthroned Mary and baby Jesus in this church mosaic (Hagia Sophia, c. 1000)
An icon of Saint John the Baptist, 14th century, North Macedonia
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Icon depicting the Emperor Constantine and the bishops of the First Council of Nicaea (325) holding the Niceno–Constantinopolitan Creed of 381.
Hagia Sophia, the largest church in the world and patriarchal basilica of Constantinople for nearly a thousand years, later converted into a mosque, then a museum, then back to a mosque.
The baptism of Princess Olga in Constantinople, a miniature from the Radzivill Chronicle
Latin Crusaders sacking the city of Constantinople, the capital of the Eastern Orthodox controlled Byzantine Empire, in 1204.
Timeline showing the main autocephalous Eastern Orthodox Churches, from an Eastern Orthodox point of view, up to 2021
Canonical territories of the main autocephalous and autonomous Eastern Orthodox jurisdictions as of 2020
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Percentage distribution of Eastern Orthodox Christians by country
John of Damascus
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Our Lady of Tinos is the major Marian shrine in Greece.
The Theotokos of Vladimir, one of the most venerated of Orthodox Christian icons of the Virgin Mary
Last Judgment: 12th-century Byzantine mosaic from Torcello Cathedral
David glorified by the women of Israel from the Paris Psalter, example of the Macedonian art (Byzantine) (sometimes called the Macedonian Renaissance)
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Chanters singing on the kliros at the Church of St. George, Patriarchate of Constantinople
An illustration of the traditional interior of an Orthodox church.
Shards of pottery vases on the street, after being thrown from the windows of nearby houses. A Holy Saturday tradition in Corfu.
An Eastern Orthodox baptism
Eucharistic elements prepared for the Divine Liturgy
The wedding of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia.
Eastern Orthodox subdeacon being ordained to the diaconate. The bishop has placed his omophorion and right hand on the head of the candidate and is reading the Prayer of Cheirotonia.
The consecration of the Rt Rev. Reginald Heber Weller as an Anglican bishop at the Cathedral of St. Paul the Apostle in the Episcopal Diocese of Fond du Lac, with the Rt. Rev. Anthony Kozlowski of the Polish National Catholic Church and Saint Tikhon, then Bishop of the Aleutians and Alaska (along with his chaplains Fr. John Kochurov and Fr. Sebastian Dabovich) of the Russian Orthodox Church present
Pope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew I in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem, 2014
The Constantinople Massacre of April 1821: a religious persecution of the Greek population of Constantinople under the Ottomans. Patriarch Gregory V of Constantinople was executed.
The Pan-Orthodox Council, Kolymvari, Crete, Greece, June 2016
Cathedral of Evangelismos, Alexandria
Patriarchate of Peć in Kosovo, the seat of the Serbian Orthodox Church from the 14th century when its status was upgraded into a patriarchate
Traditional Paschal procession by Russian Orthodox Old-Rite Church
Greek Orthodox massacred during the Greek Genocide in Smyrna in 1922.

A major event in this effort was the development of the Cyrillic script in Bulgaria, at the Preslav Literary School in the ninth century; this script, along with the liturgical Old Church Slavonic, also called Old Bulgarian, were declared official in Bulgaria in 893.

Church Slavonic

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Conservative Slavic liturgical language used by the Eastern Orthodox Church in Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Serbia, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia.

Conservative Slavic liturgical language used by the Eastern Orthodox Church in Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Serbia, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia.

An example of Russian Church Slavonic computer typography

Church Slavonic represents a later stage of Old Church Slavonic, and is the continuation of the liturgical tradition introduced by two Thessalonian brothers, Saints Cyril and Methodius, in the late 9th century in Nitra, a principal town and religious and scholarly center of Great Moravia (located in present-day Slovakia).

A major event was the development of the Cyrillic script in Bulgaria at the Preslav Literary School in the 9th century.

Early Cyrillic alphabet

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Writing system that was developed in the First Bulgarian Empire during the late 9th century on the basis of the Greek alphabet for the Slavic people living near the Byzantine Empire in South East and Central Europe.

Writing system that was developed in the First Bulgarian Empire during the late 9th century on the basis of the Greek alphabet for the Slavic people living near the Byzantine Empire in South East and Central Europe.

Codex Suprasliensis
Gospels of Tsar Ivan Alexander
Bulgar translation of Manasses chronicle
Mostich tomb stone
ℓ 1
ℓ 150
ℓ 152
ℓ 179 Old Testament, Genesis
ℓ 183 folio 2
ℓ 296 folio 6 verso
Ostromir Gospels
Sava's book
Khitrovo Gospels
Miroslav Gospel
Arkhangelsk Gospel
Andronikov Gospels
Capital letters of the early Cyrillic alphabet

It was developed in the Preslav Literary School in the capital city of the First Bulgarian Empire in order to write the Old Church Slavonic language.

The modern Cyrillic script is still used primarily for some Slavic languages (such as Bulgarian, Macedonian, Serbian, Russian and Ukrainian), and for East European and Asian languages that have experienced a great amount of Russian cultural influence.

Hemisphere view

Russian language

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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.

Russian is written using the Russian alphabet of the Cyrillic script; it distinguishes between consonant phonemes with palatal secondary articulation and those without—the so-called "soft" and "hard" sounds.

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 language tree.

Slavic languages

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

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

The most obvious differences between the East, South, and West Slavic branches are in the orthography of the standard languages: West Slavic languages (and Western South Slavic languages – Croatian and Slovene) are written in the Latin script, and have had more Western European influence due to their proximity and speakers being historically Roman Catholic, whereas the East Slavic and Eastern South Slavic languages are written in Cyrillic and, with Eastern Orthodox or Uniate faith, have had more Greek influence.

Old Church Slavonic

Icon of Saint Clement of Ohrid from the Orthodox Zograf monastery on Mount Athos in Greece, depicted as a disciple of Saints Cyril and Methodius.

Clement of Ohrid

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One of the first medieval Bulgarian saints, scholar, writer and enlightener of the Slavs.

One of the first medieval Bulgarian saints, scholar, writer and enlightener of the Slavs.

Icon of Saint Clement of Ohrid from the Orthodox Zograf monastery on Mount Athos in Greece, depicted as a disciple of Saints Cyril and Methodius.
Icon of Saint Clement, located in the Mother of God Perybleptos church, Ohrid
Fresco of St. Clement in the Church of St. Athanasius, Kastoria
Southeastern Europe in the late 9th century.
Tomb of Saint Clement within the Church of Saints Clement and Panteleimon, Ohrid, North Macedonia.

He was one of the most prominent disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius and is often associated with the creation of the Glagolitic and Cyrillic scripts, especially their popularisation among Christianised Slavs.

Thereafter, the four of them were sent to the Bulgarian capital of Pliska where they were commissioned by Boris I of Bulgaria to instruct the future clergy of the state in the Old Slavonic language.