Samovodska Charshia

Veliko Turnovo

“This was a street in which you could find everything. Particularly on Wendesdays and Fridays which, were market days, it was more like a fair. There could be so many people there that if one tries to throw an egg down there would be nowhere for it to fall,” old shopkeepers retell, remembering those days.

In the second half of the 19th century, when Turnovo began to grow to the west of Bajdarlick Square, the Samovodska Charshiya developed as an economic centre. Women from the nearby village of Samovodene used to come in on those market days, put down small rugs before them, pile their vegetables on them and begin to sell them. This is where its name came from, the Samovodene Market, Along the pavements from the bakery to Hadji Nikoli’s Inn village women from Belakovets sold milk, butter and cheese.

On market days it was one of the most animated places in the town. It consisted of two streets bordered by shops, craftsmen’s workshops, and inns. One of them began at a small square known as Oun (flour) Pazar (today Samovodska Charshia Square), and continued along the street which led to the Dryanovo Inn (at the place of the “Modern Theatre” Cinema, recently demolished). There were many other inns hereabouts, those of Hadji David and Hadji Veliko, Atanas Yonoolou’s and Hadji Nikoli’s, a grocer’s shop, a sandal maker, blacksmith and other craftsmen’s shops and workshops.