Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Eastern Question - 15 Nov 1885


Reviewed Historically and Contemporaneously

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 15 November 1885, Page 7.

Analysis excerpts from the article:

"...The sea coast of Thessaly to Constantinople, a region extending to varying distances into the interior, was thoroughly and entirely Greek except in one place east of Salonica, where it was cut by a small compact body of Turks... By the conformation of the coasts Macedonia and Thrace are connected with the Greek world..."

1 - According to Eugene Schuyler the Macedonian coast was inhabited by Greeks.

"...With this exception the Christian population of his great region, extending southward from Servia to Salonica and eastward to the Black Sea and Constantinople, was composed entirely by Bulgarians..."

"...The remainder of the Bulgarians, living in Macedonia..."

"...the Bulgarians endeavored to obtain a better situation for their countrymen in Macedonia..."

2 - The author testifies about Bulgarian national and ethnic sense of Slavs in Macedonia.

"...The Servian portion might perhaps for convenience be extended quite down to the large town of Uskup, [Skopje] and Servia would thus have her ancient capital, Prizrend, and the sacred sites of early Servian history. The whole middle portion of Macedonia is Bulgarian; but exactly how far either the Greek race of Greek influence extends into the interior is a matter of much greater dispute. From personal observations, which are confirmed by best authorities, it would seem that a proper line would be one including Monastir, and thence running eastward along the mountains to Kavalla, including Serres and Drama. This would give to Greece Salonica and Mount Athos and all the country where Greek influence is predominant..."

3 - Eugene Schuyler proposed, how to solve the problem with Macedonian Question. His solution was to be divided the borders of Macedonia along ethnic lines.

"...They imagine themselves [Greeks of the Constantinople and Aegean islands] to be the immediate descendants of the ancient Greeks and the rulers of the Byzantine Empire. While this gives great stimulus to their patriotism it misleads them. Filled with the accounts of the exploits of Alexander of Macedon and of the glories of Byzantium, the Greek lays claims to northern countries where Greek influence at no time very greatly extended or was greatly felt..."

4 - According to author, Alexander of Macedon was Greek, and he testify that Greeks of Constantinople and Aegean islands felt as descendants of ancient Macedonians and Medieval Byzantines. His claim that in northern countries (as Macedonia, Thrace and Northern Epirus) were not so strong Greek influence and national feeling is result of his Slavophile (friend of Slav peoples) politics.

"...Among all the islands on the coast of Asia Minor and even in Egypt; for whatever may be the future of Egypt the period when it was under Greek rule and Greek influence was its best and most prosperous one..."

5 - Egypt was under Greek rule and influence, during the Alexander's campaign and the rule of Ptolemaic dynasty. Because of this, we can conclude that about Eugene Schuyler, Alexander's campaign and the royal family which ruled the Ptolemaic Empire in Egypt during the Hellenistic period, are part of Greek historical heritage.

Final conclusion - Macedonians as ethnic group or community are not mentioned anywhere in the article.


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