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Sozopol / history

Sozopol is the oldest town at the Bulgarian Black sea coast. The first settlement at this place dated as far as IV – III millennium B.C. Sub water expeditions reveal relics of dwellings, ceramic pottery, stone and bone tools from the bronze era. Many stone anchors founded in the Sozopol bay area are evidence for active sea navigation since ancient times.

In 610 B.C. the Greeks founded a colony called Apolonia after the god Apollo. The town established itself as a trade and naval centre. It kept strong political and trade relations with Elada cities – Milet, Athens, Corinth, Heraklea Pontica and the islands Rhodos, Xios, Lesbos, etc. and the Thracian Odrissian kingdom. The symbol of the town – the anchor, present o n all coins, minted since VI century B.C. is a proof of the importance of trade and navigation. At this times the town was called Apolonia Magna /Great/.

In 5 th. century B.C. the Greek sculptor Caladis made a 13 meters high statue of the god Apollo, carried to Rome and placed in Capitolia after the Romans led by Marcus Luculus conquered thew town in 72 B.C.

In 6 th. century A.D. the town flourished anew and became known under the name of Sozopolis /meaning the town of salvation/.

In 811 A.D. the Bulgarian khan Krum included the town to the lands of the First Bulgarian Kingdom. Situated o n the boundary between Bulgaria and the Byzantine Empire, the town developed rapidly and became a trade, navigation and cultural centre.



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