BRIEF HISTORY OF OHRID
Archaeological remains indicate local settlement existed since Neolithic times (about 6,000 BCE). Long-vanished tribes, like the Bryges and Enchelaens, arrived later. During ancient Macedonian and Roman times, Ohrid was called Lychnidos (a Greek term describing the lucidity of its waters). An important point on the Roman Via Egnatia, it was a bishoptic by the 4th century.
With the Slavic migrations, the site was renamed Ohrid (the Macedonian phrase ‘vorid’ means ‘on a hill’). In 867, the expanding Bulgarian Empire incorporated the town, which hosted Saints Kliment and Naum. Inspired by their teachers, Cyril and Methodius, these scholar-monks produced valuable manuscripts and educated clerics at Ohrid’s literary academy.
After passing back-and-forth between Byzantium and Bulgaria in following centuries, Ohrid was swallowed up by the Ottomans in the 14th century; it remained Turkish-controlled until the Balkan Wars of 1912-1913. The lake’s division occurred after negotiations between the new Albanian state and Royalist Yugoslavia after World War I, and has been respected since Macedonian independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. Ohrid today is Macedonia’s premier tourist destination, whilst archaeological discoveries continue to shine new light on its fascinating and varied past.