The current border runs along mountain chains that separate the republic from Bulgaria, Greece, Albania, and Kosovo and Serbia. The population in that year was 67 percent Macedonian, 22 percent Albanian, and 4 percent Turkish, with smaller numbers of Roms (Gypsies), Vlahs (Aromanians), Serbs, Muslims, and others.Macedonia is slightly larger than the state of Vermont with a total area of 9,781 square miles (25,333 square kilometers). The number of Macedonians in neighboring states is difficult to determine. Macedonian is a South Slavic language in the Indo-European family whose closest relatives are Bulgarian and Serbian.During the Ottoman period, multilingualism was the norm, but today young Macedonian speakers are more likely to know English than the other national languages.

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The country consists mostly of mountains separated by flat river valleys. There is a major east-west dialectal division and about twenty subdivisions.

Macedonian evolved in contact with non-Slavic languages such as Greek, Albanian, Aromanian, and Turkish.

In Greek EU-funded minority language projects, Macedonian has never been included.

Within Macedonia, religion is as important an organizing principle as language: Most Macedonians, Serbs, and Aromanians (Vlahs) are Christian, and most Albanians, Turks, and Rom are Muslim.

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The ancient Macedonians were considered non-Greek but are claimed as co-nationals by the modern Greeks.

Modern Macedonians are Slavs descended from the peoples who arrived in the Balkans in the sixth and seventh centuries.

There are six ethnic groups: Miyak, Brsyak, Southern, Struma-Mesta, Macedo-Shop, and Upper Vardar. Macedonia is a land-locked nation located in southeastern Europe.

A traditional Muslim household has separate rooms for male and female guests, whereas a Christian house has a single room.

In older urban neighborhoods, individual single-story rooms open into a central courtyard.

Although many Macedonians self-identified as Greeks, Bulgarians, or Serbs, a distinct sense of national identity developed from a sense of linguistic difference from Bulgarian and Serbian.