Bulgarian Archaeologists Uncover Christian Complex during Sofia Metro Construction

Society » ARCHAEOLOGY | July 12, 2011, Tuesday // 20:53| Views: | Comments: 4
  • Send to Kindle
Bulgaria: Bulgarian Archaeologists Uncover Christian Complex during Sofia Metro Construction The very downtown of Sofia has seen massive excavations since 2010 over the construction of the Sofia Metro. Photo by BGNES

A large complex of small Christian churches has been gradually unearthed by Bulgarian archaeologists in downtown Sofia during continuing excavations at the construction sites of the Sofia Metro.

During the excavations near the Serdica metro station and the TZUM department store in the downtown of the Bulgarian capital last summer, the archaeologists found the remains of a medieval church.

They have now found two more medieval churches dating back to the 14th and 16th centuries located within 70 m from one another, archaeologist Snezhana Goryanova has revealed.

The northern church is located 30 m away from the Banya Bashi mosque; it was built in the 14th century, during the period of the Second Bulgarian Empire (1185-1396), and is believed to have functioned as a temple until the middle of the 16th century, which is when the second church was built. Sofia was conquered by the Ottoman Turkish Empire in 1385 AD.

While the older church has two layers of murals, the second one has six. It is believed to have functioned until the end of the 19th century when it was destroyed for the construction of the Vitosha Blvd and Sofia's urban planning as the capital of Bulgaria.

Archaeologist Mario Ivanov, who is charge of the excavations near TZUM, said the archaeologists have found items dating back from the 1st to the end of the 19th century. The greatest number of items after from 4th-6th century and the 16th-19th century.

Sofia, called Serdica by the Ancient Thracians, Greeks, and Romans, was the favorite city of Roman Emperor Constantine the Great, who is known for saying, "Serdica is my Rome." The city became part of Bulgaria in 805 AD, and was renamed with its Slavic name Sredets.

Archaeology » Be a reporter: Write and send your article
Tags: sofia, Sofia metro, archaeology, archaeologists, Christianity, Middle Ages, Second Bulgarian Empire, Serdica, Sredets, Ottoman Empire, excavations, subway, subway construction
Expats.bg All Are Welcome! Join Now!
Please, log in to post a comment.
» To the forumComments (4)
sarkan - 13 Jul 2011 // 09:12:35


"The new acropolis museum in Athens needs artifacts put into it because the place cost so much money and its so empty."

I visited the new Acropolis museum a week before for the first time and I was really disappointed about the inventory of artifacts. The National Archeological Museum is still my favorite in terms of the contents of artifacts.

Also, the architecture of the new museum is horrible, sorry to say this. The fa?ade and the floor plans are not masterpieces of design & architecture. The only positive aspect of the building is the perfect conception of the building materials according to me.

Dino the Athenian - 13 Jul 2011 // 04:16:48


Watch this to understand that only very few specialized pieces can qualify for your idea. It appears that each part of the Parthenon is unique and not interchangeable.


You may also understand why I call myself "Athenian".

mavro from australia - 13 Jul 2011 // 03:25:49

The new acropolis museum in Athens needs artifacts put into it because the place cost so much money and its so empty. Maybe Bulgaria could contribute a few things to it.

Dino the Athenian - 13 Jul 2011 // 00:42:48


Your archeologists seem to be on fire! New discoveries every week.

Can the subway go under it and still leave in place?

Bulgaria news Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency - www.sofianewsagency.com) is unique with being a real time news provider in English that informs its readers about the latest Bulgarian news. The editorial staff also publishes a daily online newspaper "Sofia Morning News." Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency - www.sofianewsagency.com) and Sofia Morning News publish the latest economic, political and cultural news that take place in Bulgaria. Foreign media analysis on Bulgaria and World News in Brief are also part of the web site and the online newspaper. News Bulgaria