Northern Macedonia Religion and Languages

By | March 5, 2021

According to Countryaah, Macedonia’s ancient culture is linked to Greece and Anatolia. Acc. archaeological studies settled the Macedonian ancestors in the country at the beginning of the Bronze Age. From the 8th century BCE, the Macedonian people emigrated to the east – from its area of ‚Äč‚Äčorigin towards the banks of the Aliakmon River. Aegae was the capital of the kingdom which, under King Amyntas I, extended to the other side of the river Axion and the Calcidica Peninsula.

Macedonia achieved a hegemonic position within Greece under the rule of Philip II (359-336 BCE). Alexander III (the Great) was the son of Philip and a student of the philosopher Aristotle. He defeated the Persian Empire and led the armies of Macedonia to the coasts of North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and through Mesopotamia all the way to India.

Established in just 11 years, the Macedonian Empire helped spread Greek culture in the Near East. Alexander the Great founded a large number of cities, encouraged a mix between Greek culture and the conquered peoples’ cultures, and thus helped to create what has become known as Hellenism. Following his death in 323 BCE, a period of internal power struggles followed, but Macedonia retained its unity as an empire.

In the year 280, groups of Galatians invaded Macedonia, where they crashed and executed the king. Three years later, the Galatians were thrown out of Antigone II, crowned king of the Macedonian army.

The majority of the population was employed in agriculture – with the exception of urban centers such as Beroea and Pella and the Greek coastal cities. The exploitation of the forests and mining was entirely in the king’s hands.

Under the rule of Philip V (221-179) Macedonia conquered the Illyrian states that had been subject to the Roman Empire. Then it advanced east and northeast until it had submerged the cities of Rodas and Pergamo. Rome responded and beat in 197 Philip, confined his kingdom to Macedonia and deprived him of Thessaly. He now chose to cooperate with the Romans, consolidated his power and Macedonia’s prosperity, and succeeded in getting Tessalia back.

In 168-146, Macedonia was transformed into a Roman province, consisting of 4 administratively independent territories. Within the framework of the empire, Macedonia was tasked with overseeing the Greek uprisings and preventing foreign invasion across the northern border. In year 27, Macedonia was made Senate province independent of Aquea (Greece). By the 4th century AD, most Macedonians had become Christians.

The invasions of Goths and females did not change the ethnic composition of the Macedonians to a greater extent, while the slaves established themselves permanently in the region.

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Between the 7th and 14th centuries, Macedonia was subject to the changing empires of the area: the Bulgarians, Byzantines and Latinos until it was completely subservient to the Serbs – except for the Greek Republic of Saloniki.

Macedonia Population by Religion