Friday, August 21, 2009

Krusevo - ethno town

Krusevo (Macedonian: Крушево, Aromanian: Crushuva) also spelt Krushevo, is a town in the Republic of Macedonia. It's a picturesque mountain town. Situated at an altitude of 1,350 metres (4,400 ft), Krusevo is the highest town in the Republic of Macedonia. 

Krusevo is known for its many fine examples of 19th century domestic architecture. The town is full of old and more recent houses built in the style of old Macedonian architecture. The town of Krusevo is the seat of Krusevo Municipality.

The name of the town in other languages is:

* Aromanian: Crushuva
* Albanian: Krusheva
* Turkish: Kruşova, Kuruşova
* Greek: Κρουσοβώς

Krusevo is a living museum, famous for its traditional architecture, cultural sites, and legacy as the site of the great 1903 Ilinden uprising against Ottoman domination. The rebellion failed, but its memory is cherished in Macedonia even today, as a symbol of the national struggle for freedom and democracy; while it lasted only 10 days, the Krusevo Republic of revolutionary leader Nikola Karev represented a desire for self-rule under a modern European political system. 

Today an enormous monument on the hill above Krusevo marks the elusive dream of the Ilinden revolutionaries.

During the Ilinden Uprising in 1903 the rebels proclaimed a short lived Krusevo Republic. Having suppressed the uprising the city was almost completely destroyed by the Ottoman army.The republic known as Krusevska republika was established here in 1903 during the Ilinden insurrection. 

One of the most important points in the Ilinden uprising was the declaration of the "Manifesto of Krusevo". It called for all the people of Macedonia regardless of their nationality and religion to fight together against the Ottoman Empire and live peacefully in a free country of Macedonia.

The town is full of old and more recent houses built in the style of old Macedonian architecture. It is home to Meckin Kamen, an historical landmark which marks the spot of the uprising of 1903. On 2 August every year, it is the site of the traditional Macedonian Independence Day celebrations, which are attended by the President of Macedonia and other Macedonian political leaders.

Krusevo also hosts the "Makedonium" monument to the Ilinden Uprising and a number of museums of the Ilinden Uprising.The towns galleries include an exhibit of 19th century icons and a memorial to the master of modern Macedonian painting Nikola Martinovski who was born in this town.

Because of its elevation, Krusevo is one of Macedonia’s winter sports destinations; the same quality also makes this pine-forested getaway a comfortable destination in summer, when the Krusevo air stays cooler and more pure than in the arid lowlands.

There is a project called "Krusevo ethno-town", supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Macedonia, developed by few enthusiasts. 

According to that project, Krusevo shall look like a town from the beginning of the 20th century, while it was the center of the Macedonian Ilinden Uprising in 1903, leading to the creation of the first Republic on the Balkans "The Krusevo Republic". People will be dressed like Ottoman Turks and Macedonian revolutionary freedom fighters. The project wants to make Krusevo a main tourist destination in five years.

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