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Old crafts


Old crafts

Bright and enlightened men lived in Tryavna. They contributed enormously to the cultural and economic progress of the settlement. Land was both scarce and barren, and this happened to be the main precondition for the rapid development of crafts.

Traditional crafts as goldsmith's trade, all raw silk processing intended for decoration purposes, braid-making, fleecy-rug weaving, silk-worm breeding, can-making, rose oil and

packsaddle manufacture, copper­smith's trade met the basic needs of the local inhabitants. A considerable part of the manufactured goods reached customers as far as Istanbul, Beirut, Edime, Moscow, Odessa, etc .

Wood-carving and icon-painting that brought about the unfading glory of Tryavna and turned into a two-century major livelihood for the local population. The essential factors defining the advent and progress of these crafts can be seen in two aspects. On the one hand it was the breath-taking scenery, the inexhaustible wood sources and the intellectual interests of the people in this region; on the other hand stands the proximity to the old Bulgarian

capital of Veliko Turnovo, the traditions of the Tumovo arts school and the numerous refugees fleeing the devastating town of Tryavna.

In terms of quality and quantity,  the artistic output of the Tryavna masters reached such a level that it was fully justified to identify it as a specific and independent school. Among the National Revival schools in Bulgaria it was the oldest and the most wide-ranging one in the geographic sense of the word.

Devoted master-builders came both from Tryavna and the vicinal villages. Houses, churches, schools, bridges and water fountains raised by them mushroomed not only over the Bulgarian lands but also in Wallachia, Serbia, Turkey, Persia.Devoted master-builders came both from Tryavna and the vicinal villages. Houses, churches,

schools, bridges and water fountains raised by them mushroomed not only over the Bulgarian lands but also in Wallachia, Serbia, Turkey, Persia. The names of master builders as Dimitur Sergyuv, Gencho Kunev, Gencho Novakov, Slav Tsanev, Rali Tsanev remain memorable for the inimitable con≠structive and artistic quality of their buildings. Some of them make up complete museums in the open as are the villages of Bozhentsi and Zheravna.

Very often master builders would be excellent wood-carvers, too. Among them were Dimitur Oshanetsa, Ivan Bochoukovetsa, Papa Vitan Jr. and his son, priest Koyu Vitanov.Dimitur Doikovcheto, Gencho Marangozov, etc. they were treated with utmost respect. In their skillful hands wood turned into winding vines, roses, sunflowers and tweeting birds.

The craftsmanship of the Tryavna icon-painters was equal in every way.

In their family studios, the six families of icon-painters, the Vitanovs, Zaharievs, Minevs, Minchevs, priest Dimitur Kunchev and Venkovs painted thousands of icons the fame of which traveled round over 500 settlements in Bulgaria. Austere or smiling, pensive or cheerful, the icons of the Tryavna icon-painters conveyed the spirit of the time they were created in through the years.

Tryavna has preserved the only National Revival set-piece square named after Captain Dyado Nikola.

 
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