Varna in prehistorical times
The first residents of contemporary Varna and the surroundings were from a very old,
over 10000 years old civilization. The flint and mesolite objects, that were found
left from the first people here, are 12000 years old.
In these times the level of the Black Sea was about 60 m lower than it is today.
After several millenniums it connects with the Marmara Sea and the Aegean Sea,
the level gets
higher and in the V century B.C. it is just two meters lower than nowadays.
This causes irrigation of the areas around the lakes and the Provadiiska River,
and Varna Bay forms inside the land. In response to the challenges of nature the
people use their knowledge and skills. The first settlements appear around Varna.
Some remnants from the settlements are found along the lake coasts. In 1907, during
the digging of the first channel sea - lake, they discovered the platform poles,
upon which the houses were constructed. In 1921
during the digging works on the channel between Beloslav lake and
Varna lake constructors came upon many objects from
everyday life - pieces of pottery, stone, bone and copper utensils were. In 1957
around these places even more descriptive remnants were found. In the next years the
discoveries are mainly in the areas of "Ladgata", "Maksuda", etc. One of the most
important objects in the lake region is the one tree-boat, found in 1970 near the
Topoli vilage. It is a more than 3 meters-long boat made of oak, using stone tools
and burning where necessary. The seats that are also strengthening the construction
The construction of the pole-based settlements became possible only because of the
common work of the people from the primitive community.
Upon the poles were placed beams - a base for the platform, upon which two houses
were constructed. They were wooden, covered with cane, mud and straw. A kind of wooden
bridge was used for going down to the floor. The house has an unusual disposition -
fireplace, stone mill, and pottery. The presence of copper and straight stone
instruments leads to the transition to the Stone-copper Age. With the time the house
look improves, the pottery becomes finer, and the labour tools more complicated.
The animal bones and remnants from wheat plants, discovered from this period,
provide information for the way of life of the people.
In the end of the Stone-copper Age new tribes come from the north and settle down
in the area. They have more experience in animal -breeding and agriculture:
and use pewter and bronze. The local population is growing, relations between
neighbour tribes and further located nations are established. The requirements for
beauty and esthetic appearance of the objects, clothes, idols are getting more
detailed and precise.
From this century dates also the Chalcolithic necropolis
that was discovered in 1972 in the surroundings of Varna. It is only meters from the
northern coast of Varna lake - the location of the West Industrial Zone nowadays. It
includes hundreds of graves in which the oldest hand-designed gold in the world was
found. The decorations and objects found in the necropolis are descriptive about the
high level of culture and aristocracy of the antic civilization on these lands.
In the middle of the IV millennium B.C. the ice melting raises the water level
with a few meters and the area of the bay is abandoned, the houses left, and life
gradually dies. In the beginning of the III millennium B.C. the sea level lowers
and the contemporary Beloslav lake and Varna lake are formed - separated from the sea by
the sand strip. After many years of loneness the earliest Thracian tribes arrive,
appreciating the location and fertile land.
There is not much information about the early history and origin of the Thracians.
The most acceptable opinion is that they, together with the other Indo-European tribes,
came after the end of the neolith era and settled for longer than a millennium.
A solid information resource is the ancient Greek mythology as well as "Iliad" and
"Odyssey" where the Thracians, their kings and treasures are described. Herodotus
says "Among all people the Thracian nation is the biggest - after the Indian of
course..." He also mentions a form of country organization with the Gethians,
together with the Crobisian and other Thracian tribes. The theory is that
the first settlers on the bay area were the gethians, and the major presence of the
crobises. In the beginning they live in the inner part of the peninsula, but in VI
century B.C. they move towards the water and settle between The Balkan Mountain and
Batova River. People from these two tribes formed the majority of the antique town
citizens. Towards the end of the VI century B.C. Odrysians' King Sitalkes united the
Thracian tribes in a single country. All seacoast cities including Odessos, become
part of it, the Thracian customs and culture, combined with the Hellenic traditions
brought by the Milletian colonists form the city as an important cultural and trade
center on the west coast of the Pontos.
Special thanks to Milena Minkova for the translation of this page.
Should any navigation problems arise, click titles from