A Short History of Bulgaria
The prehistoric civilization of Bulgaria includes the Neolithic Hamangia culture, Vinca culture, and the Bronze Age Ezero culture. The Thracians are the earliest well-known identifiable people to live in what is now the present Bulgaria. A number of eastern South Slavs, one of the main groups of Slavs that spread throughout Eastern Europe, Central Europe and the Balkans, became ancestors of the modern Bulgarians. In 681, the First Bulgaria Empire was established as the result of a peace treaty with Byzantium. Between 1365 and 1370 the Ottomans occupied nearly all of Bulgaria towns and forts on the southern part of the Balkan Mountains. The Ottoman Empire began to weaken in the 17th century and finally collapsed by the end of 17th century. The Treaty of Berlin afforded Bulgaria key sovereignty encompassing Moesia and the region of Sofia.
Bulgaria took part of the Balkan Wars at the start of the 18th century. It also allied with the Central Powers throughout World War I. During World War II, the country joined with Germany resulting to an attack from USSR in September 1944. After the war ended, the country became a People’s Republic and one of USSR’s staunchest cronies; the republic ended in 1989. The June 1990 election saw the birth of a new constitution. The anti-Communist Union of Democratic Forces assumed office from 1992 to 1994 and made various land and industry privatization. Simeon II, son of Tsar Boris III and previous Head of State, won a close democratic victory in the June 2001 election. The country joined the NATO in 2004 and the European Union in 2007.