Gold Treasure Kept Hidden for 40 Years

The Pernik Museum of History keeps a coin hoard, weighing 80 kilograms, in a safe; the museum lacks money for numismatic showcases

The biggest gold treasure in Bulgaria has been locked for 40 years. For several decades already the state authorities have been trying to discover the missing coins from the hoard, which was once a part of the treasury of Alexander the Great (336-323). The 80-kilogram weighing hoard is kept in a safe for lack of exhibition equipment. Two farmers, father and daughter discovered the fabulous riches of gold in 1968 near the Breznik village of Rezhantsi. One night, the two of them had been ploughing a furrow in the field when the tractor crashed a large earthen pythos, the size of a big amphora. The trasure - coins of pure gold and silver - was escorted by militia to the Pernik Museum of History, but the discoverers of the hoard, as well as some of the shepherds in the region, kept for themselves some of the coins. Some of the lost pieces were seized by the police and deposited for safe-keeping at the Sofia Museum of Archaeology. The coins date back from the fourth century BC. They bear the images of Philip II of Macedon (359-336), his son Alexander III of Macedon and Paeonian ruler Patraeus (335-315). According to the experts, the gold hoard was meant for salary of Alexander the Great’s army, which was defeated by the Thracian tribes in this region.
Ironically, the biggest gold treasure in Bulgaria has been locked for decades and hasn’t been exhibited by now.
According to Simeon Milyov, head of the Pernik Museum of History, the museum needs some 8,000 levs (1 euro=1.95 levs) to buy a numismatic showcase for the exposition of the priceless coins.

Anna Georgieva

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