Yane Sandanski

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Yane Sandanski, 1911

Yane Ivanov (Jane) Sandanski (May 18, 1872 – April 22, 1915), was a revolutionist considered as a national hero in the Republic of Macedonia and as a very controversial revolutionary figure in Bulgaria.


  • We are a mixture of faiths and nationalities. Among us are Bulgarians and Albanians, Serbs and Macedonians. We have even a Jew with us. But we are no bandits. You shall know very soon why you are captured.
  • As I worked in the mountains, I will continue to work for the sacred fatherland with heart and soul in any kind of duty for which the fatherland employs me and any kind of task the fatherland expects from me.
  • Today, all of us, Turks, Bulgarians, Greeks, Albanians, Jews and others, we have all sworn that we will work for our dear Fatherland and will be inseparable, and we will all sacrifice ourselves for it, and, if necessary, we will even shed our blood."
  • The future life of small nations doesn't have any conditions. Bulgaria and Serbia did wrong because they followed their own interests. Their main goal wasn't freedom for this people here, but their selfish interests, expanding of their states. After these events, they would stay where they are, and we would make a fatherland here.
    • "Interview with Jane Sandanski by Branislav Nusic," in 'Politika', 1908, Belgrade; Translated in: macedoniantruth.org, 11-13-2011, 06:21 AM
  • There, look this always happens when someone is freed by force of arms! How fine it would have been if Macedonia could have freed herself! But now it's happened, our duty is to fight alongside Bulgaria, and for Bulgaria.
    • Attributed to Sandanski (May 1913) by the Russian journalist Viktorov-Toparov; as cited in: macedoniantruth.org, Old 11-14-2011.
  • Come, let us sow together the seed of revolution, to awaken the spirit of the sleeping. Come. Let there be no more Bulgar, Greek, Serb or Vlach but only the oppressed serf.
    • Yane Sandanski. Letter to the Greeks printed in a newspaper, cited in: Bulgarian Review, Vol. 7-11, (1967). p. 37

Manifesto to all Peoples of the Empire, 1908[edit]

Manifesto to all Peoples of the Empire, Salonica, 18 July 1908; Translated in: Hacısalihoğlu, Mehmet. "Yane Sandanski as a political leader in Macedonia in the era of the Young Turks." Cahiers balkaniques 40 (2012).

  • Turkish Citizens,
    You form the large majority of the people [nation], but despite that you felt most of the evil acts of the common enemy too. In your “Turkish Empire” you were not less enslaved than your Christian citizens...
  • Dear Christian Citizens,
    You also were not any less deceived, and you believed that your troubles came from the tyranny of the entire Turkish people....
  • Co-nationals [Compatriots],
    You, who brought so many valuable victims before the Altar of Freedom, can breathe with pleasure. Now you are not alone—and therefore your fight will be easier and full of hope. With the common effort of all peoples we will achieve our freedom. Do not believe in the criminal agitations that the official governments in Bulgaria could eventually lead against your common fight, together with the Turkish people and their intelligentsia in striving for freedom...

Quotes about Yane Sandanski[edit]

  • ... Finally, one whom I took to be the voivoda (leader) spoke rapidly and roughly, telling us that they were highwaymen, that among them were many nationalities (my glance involuntarily wandered from his face to those of his companions; one, with dark, shaggy hair and beard, I thought might be of Spanish extraction, while he of the thick, light-hued curls might be a Jew, and the voivoda himself a Macedonian Parmak). He told us that they had taken us for money, and should hold us until the ransom was forthcoming.
  • The head of the leaders of the Bulgarian çetes, famous Sandanski, will come to Salonica within a few days. Sandanski is a captain famous for his patriotism and conscience. It is known that the Bulgarian Committee which had caused the awakening of the Macedonian Question was later split into two fractions, named Centralists and Vrhovists. The first of these fractions adopted the idea of Macedonia for the Macedonians and opposed the aim of unifying Macedonia with Bulgaria; it began to follow the aim of reforming the fatherland, and gaining freedom and equality.He has been living in the mountains for ten years and led this party with great success. He succeeded in killing Sarafov and many other famous leaders working to unify [Macedonia] with Bulgaria, against whom the weak [Ottoman] government was powerless.There is no doubt that Sandanski will be greeted with great acclamations, as he deserves it.

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