20 Facts About Bitola


Bitola is a city in the southwestern part of North Macedonia.

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Bitola, known during the Ottoman Empire as Manastir or Monastir, is one of the oldest cities in North Macedonia.

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Name Bitola is derived from the Old Church Slavonic word, literally "abode, " as the city was formerly noted for its monastery.

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Bitola is located in the southwestern part of North Macedonia.

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Bitola has a mildly continental climate typical of the Pelagonija region, experiencing very warm and dry summers, and cold and snowy winters.

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Region of Bitola was known as Lynkestis in antiquity, a region that became part of Upper Macedonia, and was ruled by semi-independent chieftains until the later Argead rulers of Macedon.

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Bitola was a part of the First Bulgarian Empire from the middle of the 8th to the early 11th centuries, after which it again became part of the Byzantine Empire, and in turn was briefly part of the Serbian Empire during the 14th century.

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Bitola built a castle in the town, later used by his successor Gavril Radomir of Bulgaria.

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From 1382 to 1912, Bitola was part of the Ottoman Empire, at which time it was called Monastir.

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Bitola was the headquarters of many cultural organizations at that time.

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Bitola had a significant Muslim population - 11,000 as well as a Jewish community of 5,200.

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Bitola was divided into French, Russian, Italian and Serbian sections, under the command of French general Maurice Sarrail.

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Until Bulgaria's surrender in late autumn 1918, Bitola remained a front line city and was bombarded almost daily by air bombardment and artillery fire and was nearly destroyed.

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Bitola became one of the major cities of the Vardarska banovina.

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Bitola is the economic and industrial center of southwestern North Macedonia.

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Bitola has significant capacity in the textile and food industries.

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In 1901, the Italian consul to the Ottoman Empire in Bitola said that "Undoubtedly, Koutzo-Vlach [Aromanian] population in Bitola is most significant in this town in terms of number of inhabitants, social status and importance in trade".

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Bitola is a bishopric city and the seat of the Diocese of Prespa- Pelagonia.

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Besides the dominant Macedonian Orthodox Church in Bitola there are other major religious groups such as the Islamic community, the Roman Catholic Church and others.

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Bitola has been part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network since December 2015.

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