Unique Early Christian Tomb to Be Opened in Bulgaria's Sofia

Archaeology | October 10, 2011, Monday // 11:46|  views

File photo of the Saint Sofia basilica in downtown Sofia

A unique early Christian tomb will be opened for tourists in downtown Sofia by Christmas, it has been announced.

The tomb is situated in front of the city's ancient "Saint Sofia" basilica. It has been discovered during repair works in the 80ies and it dates back to the 4th century AD. A total of BGN 140 000 has been spent by the Sofia municipality for restoration works on the tomb, Sofia Mayor Yordanka Fandakova has said, as cited by the 24 chasa daily.

"An inscription found in the tomb suggests it was dedicated to Honorius. We suppose he was a person of gentle birth and probably a clergyman," Todor Chobanov, Bulgarian Deputy Culture Minister, has revealed.

The Saint Sophia is dedicated to the Holy Wisdom and, together with the round Church of St George in the courtyard of the Presidency in downtown Sofia, is one of the oldest still operating Christian temples on the territory of Europe.

Shortly after the adoption of Christianity in the vast Roman Empire, Serdica (the ancient Thracian and Roman city which was located on the site of present-day Sofia) became an important administrative, religious and trading centre. In 343-344 AD, the Oecumenical Council of Serdica was held gathered high-level clergy from all Roman provinces to discuss and unify the Christian rites.

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Tags: early christian, tomb, basilica, sofia, Saint Sofia, Serdica


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