Feature: Peyo Yavorov

One of Bulgaria’s most admired lyric poets, Peyo Yavorov has a turbulent life story that sounds like it could have come from the pages of a lost Puccini opera. He was born in Chirpan in 1878, and by his early twenties his moody writing style had won many admirers. He was already a celebrated literary figure in Sofia when he joined the guerrillas fighting the Turks in Macedonia. His girlfriend Mina Todorova (whose parents had forbidden her relationship with the restless poet) died of consumption in Paris in 1910, and it was at her funeral that he met his next lover, Lora Karavelova, who lived with him at the house on ul Rakovski that now holds a museum dedicated to his memory. However, theirs was a stormy marriage and Lora, jealous of her husband’s supposed affairs with other women, shot herself in 1913. Yavorov, by then a broken and penniless man, shot himself a year later.