History of Sofia
Sofia is the capital and largest cityBulgaria. The town lies at the foot of the Vitosha mountain in the western part of the country and occupies a strategic position in the center of the Balkan Peninsula. Today, Sofia is the fifteenth largest city in the European Union with a population of about 1.3 million people.
The history of Sofia goes back almost 2400 years. The ancient name Serdica derives from the local Celtic tribe serdi, which lived on the territory of modern Sofia in the 5th century BC. Originally a Thracian settlement Serdika, in 29 BC It was conquered by the Romans. Serdika developed rapidly, were built protective walls, public baths, administrative buildings, the basilica, the amphitheater and the city forum.
In 447 the city was destroyed by the Huns, thenpassed under the authority of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I, during whose reign it flourished. In this period the city was surrounded by thick walls, fragments of which can be seen in Sofia today.
Sofia first became part of the First Bulgariankingdom during the reign of Khan Krum in 809, after a long siege of the city. Later, it was known as the Bulgarian name Sredets. From the twelfth to the fourteenth century, Sofia was a thriving center of trade and crafts. In 1376, the city got its present name in honor of the church of Hagia Sophia.
After a failed crusade of VladislavIII in 1443, the city became the capital of the Ottoman Empire, there was the residence of beylerbeya Rumelia for four centuries. In the sixteenth century acquired the appearance of Sophia Ottoman features: a large number of mosques, hammams and fountains.
In January 1878 in Sofia, placed Russiantroops during the Russian-Turkish war. A year later, Sofia became the capital of the Principality of Bulgaria. During World War II, Sofia was subjected to fierce bombing of the allied forces in late 1943 and early 1944's.
After the war boom began in Sofiaconstruction. The architecture was dominated by the Stalinist style. During this period, the city appeared: sports stadium, the National Library, large government complex, as well as many apartment buildings.
Sofia today - the modern capital with businesscenters, historic sites, parks and museums. The city has more than a dozen of interesting museums, including: the National History Museum of Bulgaria, the National Ethnographic Museum, the National Art Gallery, National Museum of Military History, and many others.
Photos of Sofia
- Coat Sofia
- The Turkish army under the Sofia in 1788
- The remains of the fortress of Serdika
- Basilica of St.. Sofia
- Alexander Nevsky Cathedral