Geographical Macedonia, covering a large swathe of land from the source of the River Vardar (Axious in Greek) to its estuary at Solun (Thessaloniki in Greek) has a very rich and varied history which is reflected in the present-day political climate and division of the geographical region Macedonia had its heyday during the build-up of its ancient empire ending with the sudden death of Aleksandar III of Macedon (also known as Alexander the Great), then for a short while again during the reign of the Tsar Samoil.
The region continued to exert influence afterwards through its status as the Bishopric of Bitola and Ohrid. Then as an independent state, Macedonia did not see the light of the day again until the short-lived Krusevo Republic of 1903, and now as the independent (although officially still named ‘former Yugoslav’) Republic of Macedonia.
Today geographical Macedonia is made up of four political entities: Vardar Macedonia which is the Republic of Macedonia; Pirin Macedonia which is in Bulgaria; Aegean Macedonia which is in Greece; and a tiny silver north and south of Debar which is in Albania.
A chronology of key events