Vassil Levski

Died aged c. 36

Vasil Levski (Bulgarian: Васил Левски, spelled in old Bulgarian orthography as Василъ Лѣвскій, pronounced [vɐˈsiɫ ˈlɛfski]), born Vasil Ivanov Kunchev (Васил Иванов Кунчев; 18 July 1837 – 18 February 1873), was a Bulgarian revolutionary who is, today, a national hero of Bulgaria. Dubbed the Apostle of Freedom, Levski ideologised and strategised a revolutionary movement to liberate Bulgaria from Ottoman rule. Levski founded the Internal Revolutionary Organisation, and sought to foment a nationwide uprising through a network of secret regional committees. Born in the Sub-Balkan town of Karlovo to middle-class parents, Levski became an Orthodox monk before emigrating to join the two Bulgarian Legions in Serbia and other Bulgarian revolutionary groups. Abroad, he acquired the nickname Levski ("Lionlike"). After working as a teacher in Bulgarian lands, he propagated his views and developed the concept of his Bulgaria-based revolutionary organisation, an innovative idea that superseded the foreign-based detachment strategy of the past. In Romania, Levski helped institute the Bulgarian Revolutionary Central Committee, composed of Bulgarian expatriates. During his tours of Bulgaria, Levski established a wide network of insurrectionary committees. Ottoman authorities, however, captured him at an inn near Lovech and executed him by hanging in Sofia. Levski looked beyond the act of liberation and envisioned a Bulgarian republic of ethnic and religious equality, largely reflecting the liberal ideas of the French Revolution and contemporary Western society. He said, "We will be free in complete liberty where the Bulgarian lives: in Bulgaria, Thrace, Macedonia; people of whatever ethnicity live in this heaven of ours, they will be equal in rights to the Bulgarian in everything." Levski held that all religious and ethnic groups live in a free Bulgaria enjoy equal rights. He is commemorated with monuments in Bulgaria and Serbia, and numerous national institutions bear his name. In 2007, he topped a nationwide television poll as the all-time greatest Bulgarian.

Wikidata Wikipedia

Commemorated on 1 plaque

[Cyrillic text] Vassil Levski 1837 - 1873 [Cyrillic text] "...Etre égaux avec les autres peuples européens ne depend que de nos propres et communs efforts..." [full inscription unknown]

English translation: [Cyrillic text] Vassil Levski 1837 - 1873 [Cyrillic text] “... To be equal with other European peoples depends only on our own and common efforts...” [AWS Translate]

Place de la Résistance, Paris, France where they lived