Sun, May 19 2013
All of his life, he walked through the valley of Thracian kings. Coming as a distant echo from a ghost-ruled tomb, the Thracian royalties spoke to him, called him.
He wooed them, diligently hunted for them and promised if they appeared, he would expose them to eternal glory instead.
Finally, they revealed themselves, and made him Bulgaria's most prominent archaeologist, our very own Indiana Jones.
In 2004, reacting to a tipoff that tomb raiders were getting ready to hit a site near Kazanluk, a city 170 km east of Sofia, the Thracian scholar rushed to save, or rather try to be the first who lays hands on whatever was buried under layers of earth.
He dug deep and struck gold. A solid life-size mask made of gold, positioned next to a skeleton with chopped up body parts surfaced. Gasping for breath, the archaeologist fought off one single thought that nevertheless kept coming back: Has he found the remains of the Thracian king Teres I (475/445 BCE)? "It can't be possible," he gasped for air. "It can't be possible."
Georgi Kitov died September 14 shortly after feeling sharp chest pain. He was 65.
Kitov was working on the ancient complex and presumable tomb of Thracian king Seuthes III (ca. 330/300 BCE) near the village of Starosel.
Since 1992, the archaeologist and his team explored Bulgaria's Valley of the Kings, a forested region in the central part of the country and nearly 100 km in length. The area is swelled with ancient burial mounds, no doubt left by the Thracians. After numerous mentions in ancient texts and serious archaeological finds to prove the existence of their civilization, Thracian history is still enveloped in mystery.
Being widely accepted as a Thracian expert, throughout his career Kitov has made significant discoveries such as the 2400-year-old golden mask, magnificent jewelry, well-preserved sets of weaponry and ritual artefacts.
His is responsible for the exploration of the tomb in Zhaba mogila (The Frog Mound) near Strelcha, the religions complex Heroon near the village of Starosel, as well as the Alexander's tomb close to Haskovo, which is unique for its wall paintings dated from the middle of the fourth century BCE, among others.
Kitov truly believed that the Thracians were fascinated by the idea of resurrection, but regarded any re-birth only as spiritual.
The funding is provided under the foreign military sales programme of the US army's Program Executive Office of Simulation, Training and Instrumentation.
The UK nationals were arrested after throwing beer bottles at people after being refused entry to a restaurant that had closed for the night.
Restoration and development projects include Madara Horseman, Arbanassi fortress, Magura cave.
Simeon Saxe-Coburg and his spouse Margarita opened a new heating and insulation system at the Tsar Ferdinand Hospital for Pulmonary Diseases in Iskrets, a project implemented thanks to the Embassy of the Sovereign Order of Malta in Sofia and the Nando Peretti Foundation.
According to the law's provisions, the commission will have the power to investigate individuals without prior notification and would not require a criminal conviction in order to launch an investigation.