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Vault

The Vault is on the second floor of the eastern building of the museum. The area is designed for exhibition of treasures, grave goods and single artifacts of special artistic and historical value from the Late Bronze Age through Early Iron Age to Late Antiquity.

The first exhibits in the Room (those from six warrior’s graves from the necropolis at Trebenishte, Macedonia) are on display in cases to the left of the Room. The artifacts are distinguished according to their cultural affiliation for the first time in an exhibition in Bulgaria and illustrate the burial rituals of the Illyrians during the Archaic Period. They outline also a number of elements common for the southwestern region of the Balkan Peninsula. The rich collection of needles and fragments of golden ornaments present the parade weapons and armour from this period. The bronze ware illustrates the trade relations connecting the Balkans with Central Europe, with Peloponnesus and the Near East in the sixth century B.C.

The backbone of the exhibition in the Vault are three of the world’s famous treasures-the golden vessels and disks from Vulchitrun, Pleven region; the silver appliqués of a horse harness from Lukovit, Lovetch region and the golden ornaments, silver vessels and coins from Nikolaevo, Pleven region. These three treasuries date back to three different periods from the history of Thrace, namely the transition from the Late Bronze Age to the Early Iron Age, the Early Hellenistic, and the Roman period. The treasures are presented in chronological order, each of them having the function of a central motif of a tale about the wealth and the artistic achievements of the Thracians during each of the historical periods.

The Vulchtrun treasure illustrates the topic Treasures in the exhibition. It puts forward the problem of a connection between numerous treasures found in Bulgaria and cult rituals, characteristic of the Thracians. The comparison among the 13 artifacts presented in one case, makes it possible to outline all distinctive elements, the specific development of forms, decorative repertoire, and stylistic features, typical of the region and the period of their manufacture.

Some of the artifacts of the latest discoveries in the region of Kazanluk are also on display in this Room. Among them are the grave goods from the Svetitsa tumulus, with the unique golden funerary mask, as well as the portrait head of a bronze statue from the Golyama Kosmatka tumulus in Shipka.

Maria Reho






Publications
Bulletin of the National Institute of Archaeology