Marulevsky, Trendafil (1919-2009) aka Trencho aka Stranjata

Trendafil Marulevsky

A short biography of Bulgarian anarchist communist Trendafil Marulevsky.

Submitted by Battlescarred on February 26, 2024

Trendafil Stankov Marulevsky was born on 13th April into a poor family in the town of Dupnitsa, Bulgaria. His parents were Macedonian refugees who had fled over the border from Turkish repression. He began work from an early age alongside his three brothers.

He soon became an anarchist and joined the Bulgarian Anarchist Communist Federation (FAKB). During the Second World War he was harassed by the State authorities and driven underground. He joined the partisan detachment of Zhelyu Demirevslky in the Rila region. This unit was made up of Communists, anarchists, members of the Agrarian party, and unaligned individuals. He knew Demirevski, a Communist, from schooldays. His friend, the anarchist Petra Lischkova (see biography of her here at libcom) who was in the detachment with him, died in combat in 1944.

Between 1944 and 1946 Marulesky was involved in the activities of the community centre in Dupnitsa. After the Communist coup of September 9th, 1944 he was an organiser of the FAKB in south west Bulgaria. After that, he was driven out by the Communists and forced to move to Sofia.

On December 16th, 1948, with the massive repression against the FAKB, he was detained for three months and tortured. He was then sentenced to a year in prison. His wife, Svetana Khandzhieva, was evicted and forced to move to the town of Dolni Dabnik. After prison, Trendafil joined her there, and had to take hard physical jobs. However, the Communists continued to harass them, engaging in regular house searches. Because of this, they crossed the border to Bosilegrad in Yugoslavia. Their daughter Elena was born there.

From there they took a boat to Trieste, where they ended up in an immigrant camp. They then settled in Paris in 1951, where their son Stanko was born the following year. In Paris, Trendafil worked in a car factory, and Elena as a seamstress.

Trendafil Marulevsky died on 23rd July 2009. He and Elena are buried in the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris, near anarchists like Nestor Makhno, Volin, and Charles d’Avray. On the grave is inscribed the following:

Sleep quietly, TATKO ["uncle"] and listen:
– You who fought against two dictatorships –
fascist and communist
Sleep quietly, TAKTO and listen:
– The one who lived passionately, with pride –
he never dies!
Sleep quietly TATKO and listen:
The wind is blowing, the mountain making noise,
Balconies [...] .......

For many years, Trendafil kept a chronicle. After his death, it was discovered by Elena and Stanko . This was published in Bulgaria, as Beyond Borders, thanks to the efforts of Kostadin Zyapkov, a major historian of Bulgarian anarchism.

Photo above: Photogravure of Marulevsky on his grave at Père Lachaise.

Nick Heath