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Northern Macedonia

Yearbook 1997

Northern Macedonia (until 2019 Macedonia). The tension between Macedonians and Albanians increased sharply as a result of large Albanian hostile demonstrations in the spring. According to Countryaah, thousands of students and students objected to a new law that meant that Albanian students were given the right to teach in their own language. According to the latest census (1994), the Albanian minority makes up 23% of the population. About twenty young Macedonians hunger strike, the Minister of Education resigned and the law was abolished.

1997 Northern Macedonia

The next crisis began when the mayor of Gostivar hoisted the Albanian and Turkish flags as well as the Macedonian outside the town hall. The example was followed by some twenty municipalities in western Macedonia, where Albanians had gained a majority at the 1996 local elections.

In July, the Skopje Parliament passed a law prohibiting the flag of a minority from being raised in front of public buildings. Shortly afterwards, police moved into Gostivar, broke down telephone connections and electricity supply, placed six armored cars and two fire trucks in front of the town hall and took down the Albanian flag. Albanian protesters armed with slips, stones, molotov cocktails and firearms clashed with police and at least three people were killed.

Macedonia's older history

Macedonia was a kingdom founded in the 6th century BCE. The empire was greatly expanded in the 300s BCE. under kings Philip II and Alexander the Great. In the 200th and 100th centuries BCE. followed a number of wars against the Roman Empire, and in 168 BCE. the kingdom was dissolved and divided. In 148 AD, Macedonia became a Roman province, and in 395 the country became part of the Byzantine (Austro-Roman) empire.

Today, historic Macedonia is divided between the Republic of Northern Macedonia, the province of Macedonia in northern Greece and the province of Blagoevgrad in Bulgaria.

Prehistory

In ancient times Macedonia was inhabited by a people closely related to the Greeks, but by the Greeks they were still regarded as barbarians. They spoke a language closely related to Greek, but the level of culture was low. Since there were no historical writers in Macedonia and the country did not become very interesting to the Greeks until the 300s BCE, much of their early history is unknown to us.

The Kingdom of Macedonia was founded in the 6th century BCE. The land was partly owned by a strong aristocracy and partly by free peasants. There were few cities, most importantly perhaps the old residential town of Aigai, which is probably identical to modern Vergina; the Macedonian kings were buried there. Trade and crafts seem to have been poorly developed. Greek colonies built on the coasts of Macedonia during the colonization period exported Macedonian timber, beak and tar to the rest of the Greek world. Rich gold deposits eventually became important for the kingdom's economy. Macedonia supported the Persians in the attack in the years 481–479, during the Persian wars. In the 400s, the country became more closely linked to the Greeks culturally. Macedonia was an electoral kingdom, where the king was elected by the army, which opened to constant conflict of faith.

Philip 2 and Alexander the Great

From being an insignificant land on the outskirts of the Greek world, Macedonia under Philip 2, who was king in the period 359–336, became a power factor of the first rank. He reorganized the army and created a professional army, and introduced a new battle formation with heavily armed footmen in the middle equipped with long lances (sarissai) and horseback riding on the wings; this was the most effective arm position the world had seen until then.

After battles with other faithful pretenders, West Macedonian princes and thrusters in the north and east, Philip expanded the kingdom to include the entire north coast of the Aegean Sea, including the Khalkidike Peninsula, with what was there of Greek colonial towns and their inland. At the same time, he allowed the empire to expand south, subdue Thessalia and meddle in the conflicts between the states of Greece. After the attack on Byzantion in 340, Demosthenes in Athens finally succeeded in forming a "freedom league" aimed at Macedonia's expansion. The decisive battle was at Khaironeia in Boiotia in 338, when a Greek army lost to Macedonian fighting forces. Thus, with the exception of Sparta, the Greek city-states were subject to Macedonia.

Philip's plan was to constantly attack the Persian Empire and to have the Greeks join the settlement with the enemy of the inheritance. After Philip's death, this task was performed by his son Alexander the Great, and Macedonia was for a short time the most powerful kingdom in the ancient world. After Alexander's death, his conquest kingdom fell apart, and Macedonia, first ruled by Alexander's governor of Macedonia Antipater and later by his son Kassander, again came to consist of his ancient core land, as well as Thessalia and parts of Greece. The kingdom had a more unified character and was less dominated by ruler cult than the other Hellenistic states. The army was still powerful and made Macedonia play a bigger role in Hellenistic time than the country's modest size would indicate.

War with the Romans

After prolonged wars, the country experienced a period of peace during Antigonos Gonatas in the mid-20th century. When Philip 5 (221–179) entered into an alliance with Hannibal in 215, the country was drawn into the Roman sphere of interest. The favorable peace settlement after the first Macedonian war, in the period 215-205, led Philip to pursue an aggressive policy against the Roman Allies in the Eastern Mediterranean. The Second Macedonian War, in the period 200–197, ended with the decisive victory of the Romans at Kynoskefalai in 197. Philip had to surrender lands outside Macedonia and hand over the fleet.

Philip succeeds Persevs inherited his father's anti-Roman attitude and collaborated with Roman enemies in Greece. This led to the third Macedonian war in the years 171–167. Persevs suffered another defeat against the Romans in 168, and the kingdom was dissolved and divided into four smaller states. Macedonia became a Roman province in 148, and in 395 AD the country became part of the East Roman Empire.

 

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