Mogilanska hill – Vratsa, Bulgaria



Mogilanska hill represents a half-destroyed mound  in Vratsa, Bulgaria. The place was studied by archeologists over the period 1965-66. Three stone tombs belonging to Thracian nobles were discovered in the mound and excavated. The first grave – with circular design – was probably robbed  in Antiquity.  They found two other tombs as well, which were relatively preserved. In the bigger chamber the specialists  found the  skeletons  of  an an adult and  a young woman, as well as many silver, bronze and golden vessels, different weapons and agricultural equipment. The adult male’s burial was surrounded by two sets of silver jugs, four inscribed phialae, a wood gorythos (quiver) containing many bronze arrowheads, iron spearheads, a bronze helmet of the Chalkidian type, a silver-gilt greave and a group of four Greek bronze vessels, possibly remains from the funerary feast.

The funeral was extremely rich,  which made archeologists believe an ancient Thracian princess had been buried here. The head of the young woman was adorned with a golden wreath similar to laurel twigs, weighing 205 g and made of the purest gold. The gold wreath was complemented by solid golden earrings  with elaborate disc and lunate pendant were found by the ears, as well as a golden hairpin. adorned in their bottom with figures of sphinxes and floral ornaments.

In the third grave, partially robbed in Antiquity, were found skeletons of a man and a woman with gold and silver jugs, gold jewelry, objects of clay, iron arrows with pointed tips.

The rich findings in the Mound Mogilanska confirm the general opinion, that  this is a royal tomb, relating to the dynasty ruled in the IV century BC – Triballi who inhabited lands in the current Vratza region.

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This is a photo of Hoo-n-ym-pka (Hopi), who wears turquoise mosaic earrings and a necklace of glass seed beads strung with one larger bead, seen on the left. Her butterfly hairstyle is typical of postpubescent, unmarried Hopi women. Her manta is the traditional black woolen blanket dress worn by Pueblo women. This picture was taken in 1901.


These three earring sets demonstrate how the style of Southwest mosaic-inlay work has remained constant from the ancient pre-Puebloans to contemporary artists. (Top:) These Ancestral Pueblo turquoise-mosaic pendants are estimated to have been made sometime between 1100-1200 CE and were found at Canyon de Chelly. (Middle:) These Hopi turquoise and abalone shell earrings were made in the late 1800s. The mosaic includes turquoise beads found at ancient ruins. (Bottom:) These earrings of turquoise and abalone shell were made by Hopi master jeweler Charles Loloma in 1978.

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