Work on developing an archaeoligical park and visitor centre at the Slatina site in Bulgarian capital city Sofia is to start in autumn 2019, mayor Yordanka Fandukova said.
Archaeologists have been working on examining the Slatina site for the past five years, uncovering details of an early Neolithic settlement that dated back to the period 6100 to 5500 BCE.
The site is one of the most ancient of its type in the Balkans. It covers an area of about 30 hectares.
A statement by Sofia municipality said that those who lived at the site in the Neolithic period were the creators of the first European civilisation.
Fandukova expressed gratitude to the archaeological team headed by Professor Vassil Nikolov, with whom the municipality has been working for the past five years. “The story that we are revealing is 8000 years old,” she said.
Sofia municipality has been providing financing for the project for the past five years and up to now, about 300 000 leva (about 150 000 euro) has been invested.
Nikolov said that an interesting aspect of the site was the remnants of “walls”, built of wooden pillars, closely spaced, in the middle and inner ditch of the site. These palisades could have been defensive facilities. However, the wall in the middle ditch made no sense as a defensive facility, and this was a good indication of the ritual and magical function of the facility, he said.
It has long been known by archaeologists that the oldest human settlement in Sofia was in Slatina.
(Photo: Maria Sabotinova)