At Expo 2020 Dubai, Bulgaria is represented through its symbols, traditions and contribution to world history.

The rose is a symbol of Bulgaria. Collecting Rosa Damascena is one of the oldest and most traditional Bulgarian customs. Traditionally, foreigners are fascinated by the aroma of the Bulgarian rose. That is why the Bulgarian pavilion smells of roses, and the visitors receive as souvenirs samples with rose aroma – muskals, cream rose, toothpaste with rose oil and others.

Bulgaria is the cradle of one of the earliest civilizations in Europe – the oldest golden treasure in the world which was found in our country- is proof of that. Its replicas are displayed in the pavilion and are one of the main attractions for visitors.

Guests of the Expo are intrigued by the ‘’column of writing’’- a special column in the Bulgarian pavilion which displays the “Glagolitic” and “Cyrillic” ancient writings. The column has become a favorite place for visitors to take photos as a memory of there visit to the Bulgarian pavilion.

Many of the tourists express great interest in the history of our alphabet.

The Glagolitic

The Glagolitic (meaning “utterance” or “word”) alphabet is the work of the genius philologist Constantine-Cyril and is a completely original graphic system in which each letter corresponds to one sound. Moreover, in it the letters for similar sounds have similar outlines. That is why it’s believed to be the most perfect graphic system from ancient times to the present day.

The brothers aimed to translate liturgical books into the contemporary Slavic language understandable to the general population, now known as Old Church Slavonic, which is the first language the Bible was translated to, different from Ivrit, Greek and Latin – the three holy languages.

Constantine the Philosopher began work on the alphabet during his first stay in the monastery on Mount Olympus around 855. Constantine-Cyril created the Glagolitic alphabet for the Thessaloniki Slavic dialect, which belongs to the Eastern Bulgarian Rupian dialects.

Later it served as the basis for the Cyrilic alphabet, commissioned to be made by the Bulgarian Tsar Simeon I the Great at the Preslav Literary School in the First Bulgarian Empire.

Cyrillic

Cyrillic is derived from the Greek uncial script, augmented by letters from the older Glagolitic alphabet, including some ligatures. These additional letters were used for Old Church Slavonic sounds not found in Greek. The script is named in honor of Saint Cyril, one of the two Byzantine brothers, Saints Cyril and Methodius, who created the Glagolitic alphabet earlier on. Modern scholars believe that Cyrillic was developed and formalized by the early disciples of Cyril and Methodius in the Preslav Literary School, the most important early literary and cultural centre of the First Bulgarian Empire and of all Slavs:

Nowadays around 250 million people in Eurasia use Cyrillic as the official script for their national languages, with Russia accounting for about half of them. With the accession of Bulgaria to the European Union on 1 January 2007, Cyrillic became the third official script of the European Union, following the Latin and Greek alphabets.