Panagyurishte Treasure

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Panagyurishte Treasure
Sofia - Panagyurishte Thracian Gold Treasure.jpg
Material gold
Created 400 BC – 300 BC
Discovered 1949 at Panagyurishte
Present location Plovdiv Regional Historical Museum

The Panagyurishte Treasure (Bulgarian: Панагюрско златно съкровище) is a Thracian treasure.[1]


The treasure consists of a phiale, an amphora, three oinochoai and four rhytons with total weight of 6.164 kg of 24-karat gold.[2][3][4] All nine vessels are richly and skilfully decorated,[5] it is dated from the turn of the 4th-3rd centuries BC.[6] It is thought to have been used as a royal ceremonial set by the Thracian king Seuthes III.[7][8]

The items may have been buried to hide them during 4th century BC invasions of the area by the Celts or Macedonians,[9] the phiale carries inscriptions giving its weight in Greek drachmae and Persian darics.[10]


Deikov Brothers holding the treasure

It was accidentally discovered on 8 December 1949 by three brothers, Pavel, Petko, and Michail Deikov, who worked together at the region of “Merul” tile factory near the railway station of the town of Panagyurishte, Bulgaria,[11] at the time of its discovery it was considered "the richest treasure to have been unearthed in Europe since World War II.".[12]

Exhibitions around the world and replicas[edit]

As one of the best known surviving artefacts of Thracian culture, the treasure has been displayed at various museums around the world.[13][5][14][15][16] The treasure is the centerpiece of the Thracian art collection of the Plovdiv Regional Historical Museum, the National Museum of History in Sofia, and the History Museum in Panagyurishte. There are three replica sets, which are displayed in the museums in Panagyurishte, Sofia and Plovdiv, when the authentic treasure is lent for exhibitions abroad.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Crampton, R. J. (2005). A Concise History of Bulgaria (2nd ed.). Cambridge, New York, Melbourne, Madrid, Cape Town, Singapore, São Paolo: Cambridge University Press. p. 1. 
  2. ^ Tsontchev, Dimiter (1955), "The Gold Treasure of Panagurishte", Archaeology, 8 (4), pp. 218–227, JSTOR 41663325 
  3. ^ Venedikov, Ivan (1968). Thracian Art in Bulgaria; Translated by Marguerite Alexieva. Sofia: Sofia Press. pp. 52–60. 
  4. ^ "Панагюрско съкровище". Кратка българска енциклопедия (ОПЕРЕ-СТРОЙ). IV. София: Издателство на Българска академия на науките. 1967. p. 61. 
  5. ^ a b Thracian Treasures from Bulgaria; Introduction by Lionel Casson; Essay by Ivan Venedikov; Photographs by Lee Boltin; Design by Irwin Glusker with Christian von Rosenvinge and Eloise Vega. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1977. pp. 41–53, 61. Retrieved 23 February 2018 – via Internet Archive. 
  6. ^ Simon, Erika (1960), "DER GOLDSCHATZ VON PANAGJURISTE - EINE SCHÖPFUNG DER ALEXANDERZEIT", Antike Kunst, 3 (1), pp. 3–29, JSTOR 41318509 
  7. ^ The nine sensational gold vessels were initially announced as "vessels from which Alexander the Great may have drunk". See Illustrated London News of December 11th, 1954, pp. 1056-1057. Kontoleon, N.M. (1962), "The Gold Treasure of Panagurischte", Balkan Studies, 3 (1), p. 186 
  8. ^ Graham, J.W. (1957), "Auri Sacra Fames", Phoenix, 11 (3), p. 116, JSTOR 1087075 
  9. ^ Fanthrope, Lionel; Fanthorpe, Patricia (2009). Secrets of the World’s Undiscovered Treasures. Toronto, Ontario: Dundurn. p. 72. 
  10. ^ Thracian Treasures from Bulgaria: Checklist of The Special Exhibition, June 11- September 4, 1977, coordinated by Dietrich von Bothmer, item 362. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1977. Retrieved 1 June 2018 – via Digital Collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 
  11. ^ Kitov, Georgi (2003). The Panagyurishte Treasure. Varna: Slavena Publishing House. pp. 6–9. 
  12. ^ Hoffmann, Herbert (1957), "Book Review: Neue Denkmäler antiker Toreutik by Bedřich Svoboda, Dimiter Cončev, Monumenta Archaeologica. Acta Praehistorica et Historica Instituti Archaeologici Academiae Scientiarum Bohemoslovenicae Curante Jaroslovo Böhm Edita, Tomus IV, Pp. 172, figs. 46, pls. 32. Prague, 1956", American Journal of Archaeology, 61 (4), p. 391, doi:10.2307/500610 
  13. ^ Daumas, Michèle (1978). "L'amphore de Panaguriŝté et les sept contre Thèbes". Antike Kunst. 21 (1). p. 23. Retrieved 15 March 2018 – via JSTOR. 
  14. ^ See Thracian Treasures from Bulgaria; 12 May - 1 July, 1979, Nagoya City Museum. Tokyo: The Chunichi Shimbun, The Tokyo Shimbun. 1979. pp. 53–57 – via Internet Archive. 
  15. ^ Eisenberg, Jerome M. (January 1998). "Wealth of the Thracians: A Spectacular Exhibitions of Thracian Treasures Travelling America" (PDF). The International Review of Ancient Art & Archaeology - MINERVA. 9 (1). p. 17. Retrieved 22 June 2018. 
  16. ^ Kitov, Georgi (2003). The Panagyurishte Treasure. Varna: Slavena Publishing House. pp. 46–47. 

Selected bibliography[edit]

  • Venedikov, Ivan (1961). Panagyurskoto sukroviste. Sofia: Bulgarski Hudozhnik. 
  • von Bothmer, Dietrich (December 1962). "A Gold Libation Bowl". The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. 21 (4): 154–166. Retrieved 1 June 2018 – via JSTOR. 
  • Strong, Donald Emrys (1966). Greek and Roman Gold and Silver Plate. London: Methuen & Co. Ltd. pp. 97, 102. 
  • Griffith, John G. (1974). "The Siege Scene on the Gold Amphora of the Panagjurischte Treasure". Journal of Hellenic Studies. 94: 38–49. Retrieved 1 June 2018 – via JSTOR. 
  • Hoddinott, Ralph F. (1975). Bulgaria in Antiquity: An Archaeological Introduction. London, Tonbridge: Ernest Benn Limited. pp. 85, 89. 
  • Moorey, P. R. S (March 1976). "Thracian Treasures". The Burlington Magazine. 118 (876): 174, 179. Retrieved 22 June 2018 – via JSTOR. 
  • Marazov, Ivan; Fol, Alexander (1977). Thrace and the Thracians. New York: St. Martin’s Press. pp. 22, 60, 66, 69, 75, 79, 81–85, 100, 111, 153. Retrieved 8 June 2018 – via Internet Archive. 
  • Venedikov, Ivan (1977). "The Archaeological Wealth of Ancient Thrace". The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. 35 (1): 39 (color plates 9–14). Retrieved 3 June 2018 – via JSTOR.  via- Met Publications
  • Kramer, Hilton (June 10, 1977). "Glory of Thrace Shines at MET". The New York Times: 54. Retrieved 1 June 2018. 
  • Moonan, Wendy (May 22, 1998). "ANTIQUES; Rediscovering 'Lost' Culture Of Thrace". The New York Times. Retrieved 3 June 2018. 
  • Rotroff, Susan I. (July–August 1998). "Thracian Glitter: A dazzling display of ancient art". Archaeology. 51 (4): 64–67. Retrieved 3 June 2018 – via Archaeology Archive. 
  • Marazov, Ivan; Fol, Alexander (1998). Ancient gold: The Wealth of the Thracians: Treasures from the Republic of Bulgaria. New York: Harry N. Abrams, in Association with the Trust for Museum Exhibitions, in Cooperation with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Bulgaria. pp. 145–148. 
  • Archibald, Zosia H. (1998). The Odrysian kingdom of Thrace: Orpheus unmasked. Oxford, New York: Clarendon and Oxford University Press. pp. 271–272, 328. 
  • Fanthrope, Lionel; Fanthorpe, Patricia (2009). Secrets of the World’s Undiscovered Treasures. Toronto, Ontario: Dundurn. p. 72. 
  • Veleva, Julia (2015). "Chapter 14: Gold, Silver and Bronze Vessels". In Veleva, Julia; Nankov, Emil; Graninger, Denver. A Companion to Ancient Thrace. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons. pp. 202–203. 


External links[edit]