The monument to the renowned Bulgarian poet Hristo Smirnenski stands proudly on Evlogi Georgiev Boulevard, facing the Sofia High School of Construction, Architecture, and Geodesy named after “Hristo Botev”. Sculpted by the esteemed Bulgarian artist Prof. Marko Markov, known for his work’s simplicity, stability, and clear proportions, the monument pays homage to the literary legacy of Smirnenski. Markov’s repertoire includes other distinguished works like the monuments of St. Patriarch Euthymius and Alexander Stamboliyski in Sofia, along with several military memorials in the province.
Hristo Dimitrov Izmirliev (Smirnenski) was born in 1898 in Kukush. His family experienced the tumultuous Balkan War in 1912 and the subsequent Inter-Allied War in 1913, which led them to seek a new life in Sofia. Hristo enrolled in the Technical School, following the footsteps of his brother Toma. At a remarkably young age, he began contributing to various humorous publications like “K’vo da e,” “Bulgaran,” and others, swiftly gaining popularity. By 1917, he adopted the pseudonym Smirnenski, a name forever etched in Bulgarian literature.
Smirnenski left an indelible mark on Bulgarian literature as a prolific writer who expressed his resentment toward societal injustices through his poetry. Dominated by his compassionate portrayal of the weak and abandoned, his cycles “Winter Evenings” and “Children of the City” resonate deeply. Ideologically rich poems like “The Red Squadrons” and “The Revolt of Vesuvius” exemplify his beliefs. Even today, his piece “Tale of the Ladder,” critiquing venality and egoism, remains relevant, sparking ongoing public discourse.