The breastplate made of precious metals was discovered during the archaeological survey of the "Tsviatkova" mound, the "Kosmatkite" necropolis in the lands of Shipka - Sheynovo, Kazanlak municipality, studied with the funds of the National History Museum

Breastplate from "Tsviatkova" mound

The breastplate made of precious metals was discovered during the archaeological survey of the "Tsviatkova" mound, the "Kosmatkite" necropolis in the lands of Shipka - Sheynovo, Kazanlak municipality, studied with the funds of the National History Museum by a team of Dr. Georgi Kitov (National Archaeological Institute with Museum – Bulgarian Academy of Sciences) and Gavril Lazov (National History Museum) in 1995.

At the end of the 90s, the Central Laboratory for Conservation and Restoration of the National History Museum began conservation activities on the fragments of the find. In 2020, a team of archaeologists, a restorer, an artist and a photographer under the leadership of Pavlina Devlova (National History Museum) carried out the graphic reconstruction and conceptual reconstruction of the monument. It was restored by Georgi Iliev (Regional History Museum – Yambol) in 2021 as part of a project for restoration, conservation and exhibition with funds from the Ministry of Culture.

The breastplate is made of different elements and materials. The base is a massive, moon-shaped iron collar that covers the chest, shoulders and back. In the neck area, the base is curved in an "L-shape" to protect the neck from the front and back. An embossed silver plate with solid gilding and exquisite decoration completely covers the iron backing. By forging, twelve longitudinal belts of different widths are formed from the neck to the periphery.

The restored monument belongs to the group of the so-called breastplates of the "Mezek" type distributed in Thrace in the second half of the XNUMXth century BC.

The breastplate is part of the rich gold and silver grave goods in the mound. The decorated specimen is part of defensive parade armament. Its discovery, along with numerous arrowheads, a spear, knives, a horse skeleton, numerous appliqués from horse harness, silver fragments and elements of object decoration suggest that it belonged to a distinguished nobleman.

Text: Pavlina Devlova
Photographer: Todor Dimitrov

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