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:: holyplaces-kn ::

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University of library science and information technology

Faculty of library sciences and cultural heritage
At Culture-historic heritage Department

Academic Theory
Thesis for acquiring an educational and scientific doctor degree in vocational range 3.5 Public communications and informational sciences

/Field studies, interpretations, and the issues of socialisation/

By: Veska Mihaylova Spasova

Head of Science:
Prof. D-r Boryana Buzhashka

Sofia, 2020

Table of Contents
PART ONE - Familiarising with the topic - sources, scientific interpretations and traditions of the cult rituals..12
1. Essence and meaning of the sacred toposes and the spiritual human nature.12
2. Theoretical models and conceptions for the semantic measures and specification of the toposes votive offerings - obrok and Ayazmo - healing springs...........................................................................................24
3. The votive structure and the function of the votive system and holy waters.41
PART TWO - Local sacred places in Kyustendil.71
1. Kyustendils Krayshte region...........71
2. Kamenitsa.........81
3. Piyanets...106
4. Kyustendils Hollow...135
PART THREE - Sacred topography of the Boboshevo, Nevestino, Kocherinovo, Rila, Rilas Monastery areas- local identity of the votive system and the springs of the different settlements..211
1. Boboshevos area: Boboshevo town and neighbouring villages.211
2. Nevestino, Kocherinovo, Rila, and the Rila monastery areas.228
Reference list256
Index of the settlements263
Used abbreviations271
Used sources.272
Terminological text book.294

Thesis contents
Introduction /p. 3-11/
In this thesis introduction, fitted are the main parameters of the study - painting the theme, actuality and meaning, time-frame and range of the terrain studies. The purpose and tasks are clearly defined, using traditional methods at the terrain.

1. Topic of the study
The topic of this study is focused mainly on the sacred projection and livelihood of sacred places within the Kyustendil region. In this direction, the thematic is thought of and illustrated concretically, by the meaning of the toposes obrok - votive offerings and ayazmo - healing springs, cult spaces - holy, mystic, secretive, dangerous. The name obrok is mainly appropriated as a sacred place for a ritual scarification of a blood victim, whereas ayazmo means a healing miraculous spring, holy water. Usually, the spiritual centre is in close relation with the cult practice, which leads us to think about the roots of many celebrational-offering practices. That is why within the content aspect of the study is completed from the matter of the patrons saints days in the territorial-village (settlement) structure.
The specific appearance of the functions of the saints-protectors of the neighbourhoods, the villages, the land. At the exposition, as an addition to the topic, without ambitions for unfolding, present are cult complexes of the type of monasteries, churches, chapels as relevant options of sacred toposes, but with their own meaning charge and projection of residence within the natural and social surroundings of the person. Mentioned are the archeological areas in the different villages, written are legends, connected with holy places. Their designation is important, in order for us to try and follow the destiny of the specific sacred toposes, the nascency, functioning and transformation, culture-historic build-ups, related to them.

2. Relevance
The relevance of the study is defined by the need for making a structural model for localisation, analysis, scoring and publicity. At present, there isnt a fully working ethno-museological model in the region. Regardless, the content wealth of the examined topic is in the field of range from a long time of the science, which on its own is not wasted. It is distinguished by its local structure, symbolics, technique, functionality, and meaningfulness within the social being of the individual and the society. Precisely, that regional identity sparks curiosity and up to date fields for examination. In parallel, every change of the space, used by its particular cult object can bring in a new order and point to the development, which on its own makes way to new possibilities for new studies and research.

3. Significance
In this thesis for the first time a collective and in-depth research is made of holy places as a significant part of the contemporary cultural society of the Kyustendil region. Discovered and introduced in scientific turnover are a significant amount of votive offerings and holy waters - more or less popular. Contribution to the work of the covered unpublished and unfamiliar until now places. The scientific research shows their visual and text-based interpretation. On the basis of an in-depth analysis, many scientific conclusions have been made. On its own, this work represents a synthesis of a new research product.

4. Timeframe
The chronological period of this study is provisionally shown from the end of XIX - XX cent. - time of a gradual transformation of the celebratory-offering system and the folk psychology of the bulgarian. To an extent, one state, in the time-passing, filled with processes of dying out, modifications, storage and play out.
In the studied villages from the Kyustendil region, example for an early existence can be pointed the cross dating from 1870 in the Saint Ivan Rilskis cave, located north of Gyrbino /Kotlovinata - The hollow/, in the Svetena Voda - Holy water area. For a long time the village the place is used for consecrations, related to the holiday of the saint Otchov den that is celebrated on the 19th of October and with the organising of a service - sacrificial rite. From a late period - 18th of april 1960 is the consecration St Iliya, located in an area, named the same way, north of Stensko village /Kotlovinata/. Marked with a small chapel, raised from the ground on 3 cement pillars. The entire village gathers on Ilinden /20th of July/, always on this date. A holy liturgy is made, and a rite is given.

5. Spatial parameters
The areal studies cover 114 villages of the Kyustendil region. Included are the villages of Myrvodol /Razmetanitsa/;, Pastuh and Dolna Koznitsa /Nevestino Municipality/; the town of Boboshevo and some villages from the municipality - Vukovo, Dobrovo and Skrino; Frolosh and Tsurvishte /Kocherinovo M./; the town of Rila and the Rila Monastery. In view of the study, the work of the museums staff is significant. Also a significant part from the research are the conducted areal studies, archeological excavations, that give a clearer notion of the discovered artifacts, and past historical periods. Thats why Veneta Genadieva, Stefan Chohadzhiev, Yuniyan Meshekov are a valuable source of information for the current study. Included in this work villages are organised in alphabetical order, on areal principal principle of municipalities. In the attachments there is a offered index of the villages. The registered cultural memorials are represented in accordance to a micro-area, dynamics and variations of time and spac, local elements, ritualism and functions, historical acceptance. When the villages from the region are arranged, a leading position is historical - geographical and their ethnographic division, defined by the member - correspondent Yordan Zahariev for 4 regions: Kraishteto /1918/, Kamenitsa /1935/, Piyanets /1949/, and the Kyustendils hollow /1963/. The selection is based on the fact, that the suggested by Zahariev village order, shows resilience in time of the territorial units. In the settlements, in which there arent any registered cult centres of the type consecrations and ayazmas would not be a subject of representation in this dissertation.
The geographical territory of the Kyustendils Krayshte includes 25 inhabited places. Localised are 18 consecrations and 5 ayazmas. The region of Kamenitsa covers 27 settlements. Located are 34 consecration places and 7 ayazmas. As part of Piyanets, there are 26 villages. Located are 45 consecrations, 13 votive memorials and 7 ayazmas. Within the Kyustendils hollow, there are 44 villages situated, localised are 53 consecrations, 23 votive memorials and 21 ayazmas.
In the regions of Boboshevo, Nevestino, Kocherinovo, Rila and the Rila monastery there are 32 cult objects and 5 ayazmas.

6. Purposes of this study
The leading purposes of this research is to offer a complex and optimal studying and description of the holy places - consecrations /votive places and ayazmas in particular/ within the Kyustendil region from the end of XIX-XX cent.; to follow and analyse their specific and their ritual, throughout the covered period; geographical range, historical and axiological parallels, to look out for encoded semantics of the toposes, through which they live in time coexist with nature and people, to put emphasis on the intransitive spirituality of the ancestors. The Author considers it important to do the necessary in order to preserve the handover of the cultural heritage for upcoming generations! Through his work, he wishes to convince the reader in the trueness of the proposed argumentation, based solely on objective research. This thesis does not claim full circumstantiality on one such interesting, dynamical and essential issue.

7. Tasks to solve in this research
For the successful completion of the purposes there are a few main tasks marked:
- clarification of the purposes of this topic;
- outline the time and spatial localisation of the considered votive places and ayazmas;
- reflecting on their sacred projection;
- folklore notion, beliefs, mythologies of the sacred places;
- structural model of the votive action, accompanying the cults place; functionality of the votive rite with the joint table in the common rural setting;
- votive communication and communicative aspects in the frame of the sacrum;
- cultic acceptance within the sacred topography of the separate settlements;
- Parallels with similar sanctimonious centres, beliefs and rituals from different regions;
- following the resilience of the sacred places in the ethnocultural tradition of modernity, physical condition of the places, innovations.

8. Methods and methodology
In an effort of achieving a clearer and complete outcome, written sources, information from the Internet, and stories of Informators are used in this thesis. Work on terrain, registers a combination of classic ethnological methods: immediate surveillance and a description of the cultic place /disposition, marking, symbols, et cetera./; preparation of a questionnaire and conduction of interviews; method of the included surveillance, which helps following tightly the specific cultural model. Combined documenting /records, photo, audio and video recording/ of the ritual and at the same time with participation and following the interactions in it. With constructive purpose, the comparative method is used, which allows comparisons to be made with typologically similar places and ritualistic processes. In the research, reported are the individual differences of the informators based on gender, age, social status and qualification.
The works on terrain, allows rich empirical material to be collected and analysed. The places of exploration are consecrations, churches, chapels, monasteries, ayazmas, caves, also records and legends, relevant to the name of the village or with a particular locality.

Part One /p. 12-70/ - Introduction to the topic - sources, scientific interpretations and traditions of the cult rituals

The development of part one represents a historical review, on which the topic is based. The shown text is divided into 3 sections.
Section 1. Essence and meaning of the sacred toposes as part of the spiritual world of the man.
At the beginning a theoretical frame of the problematic is given, premises of occurrence of the sacred toposes, their need and the interest to the deity, the role of the narrative for consecrations within the folklore story. Their knowledge preservation as spiritual centers is a major stimulator for validating the activity and their significance in the dimensions of the sacred topography. The consecrations have their own informational projections in the real stretch which produces its own energy load. They can give the believing man hope, insight, health, love, will, and inspiration. As an insight to humanity towards the transcendental, the afterlife, videlicet these sacred places are connecting with the faith in that power,which pushes the Universe, regulates the order in space, has effect on the life of people, and exists in their everyday life. The destiny of the topos is directly related to the cult life. Mutually connected are the consecration, the sacred time - the holiday in honor of the patron saint, relics, ritual actions, narratives. The compositional rituality at the cultic territory is a sign of the so called Utalitarna sakralnost - utilitarian sacredness from Evgeniya Ivanova, included in the concept for achieving desired forms of life, such as health, welfare, fertility of the individual/for the society. The necessity of life can be in a relationship with protection against natural or adverse powers.
The structure of the custom - the ritual actions, typical for the holy places, is studied as a solid part of the local holiday calendar for the population of Kyustendil, as a developed over time votive behavioural model, as a sign for the cultural specific. There is also a mutual codependency between the social unity /family, relatives, territory/ and cultic area. This codependency is explicated through the interest for spirituality, faith in the mystical. In this context, is the play of the Dutch historian and ethnologist Peter Jan Margry for the faith, which is the key to venerating the holy places. Tied-up in the entire life cycle of the personality or the group, it is a mix of feelings, conceptions, and expectations. The motives, based on faith are different - coupling, mental crisis, given vow, forgiveness, sacrament, e.g. Valeria Fol defines it as a system of images and ritual practices. She uses the termin Toposes of Faith, which are therefore used by temporal, spatial, and categorical characteristics.
In this thesis, classified concepts are led as the word combination cult towards the saint, which is following the text openly; holiness/holy, not only in ecclestiastical context, but in a way, something sacred, intimate, fateful for the individual - from mythological-folkloric archaic to the christianity and the new ordinances of time. Subject to significance are the thesis of the German theologian and philosopher Rudolf Otto, who searches the essential definition of the religion in the idea of the divine, the holy. He defines the holy as similar to the numinous. Mircea Eliade in his interpretations, introduces the termin hierophany - disclosure of the holy, build-up, concentration of sacredness.
In this case, the meaning of the approved phraseologism holy/sacred space is referring to everything, that is related to worshipping and on which the religious processes are conducted in accordance, sacrifices, purifications, dedications. In M. Karamihovas work Dynamics of the sacred places, and worshipping in post-socialistic Bulgaria postulates the idea, that the worshipping at a sacred place, ..is a complex ot attitudes, behaviours and rituals on the road towards, from and in the space of the holy and transcendent. Which is a global phenomenon, in which the religion and the religious people act and introduce themselves in accordance to their knowledge and their faith.
In terms of the type and contents, the sacred centers can be classified as: ancient and new, cultic and historical, local and national, landmarks. According to their geographical location there are two types - outside the villages and within the borders of the village outlines. In this research, the described holy places are of the cultical type, old and new, with local meaning, situated within the village or out of it.
The sacred gist of the cultical place is considered and outlined by taking ritualistic action. To an extent, and essence the process of the ritualism, the necessity for known regularity and rhythmicity, that goes from end-to-end as an important, integrative part of the life of the individual and the group. With this purpose, the conception of Arnold van Gennep is exposed, dating from the beginning of the XXth cent., for the so called rituals of the transition - the individual is separating from its everyday existence, goes through a corresponding ritual of the transition, through which it enters the liminal phase and by doing this it includes himself to its new status. The Interpretative explanation of the liminality is associated with chaos, moil, with bans, with sometimes sufferings done to the individual/group. Namely this borderlining, as a distinct differentiation of the different, constructs the new order. A big defendant of the theory for liminal phases and borderlining is also Victor Turner. Up until his touch with the sacred place, the worshipper accepts a liminal behaviour at a time of an actual transition, following the ritual practice of the sacred place, after which he returns back to his normal surroundings. In this complexity, between the individuals mentality, he strives to communicate with the deity, the holy, which in a distinctive way is available at that moment.
The rituals in the sacred places can be a prayer, an act of crossing, touching the relics, bringing offerings, scarification, sleepover at the holy place, drinking from the miraculous spring, et cetera. A person can bow, can demonstrate tranquility, religious devotion everywhere without taking time and place as important, but if the person does not follow the ritual guidelines, that when combined generate and structure the votive place, then the prayer will remain unattainable. Significant role of the cultical place plays the pragmatical element. The higher power, in which existence we believe, is unknown, invisible, but identifiable through the results of its manifestation, through its practical effect onto the life of people. For a given region, often there are one or more occultic spaces, where it is believed that an energy floats, that a miracle has happened there before and it is expected to happen again. Similar, can often be observed throughout the Kyustendil territory. In many scenarios, the center of the sacred space with active maintenance of a cult, can have etiology on its own, to be related with miraculous saying, that explains its origin and the reverence of the cult. The created mythologem is characterised with toponymy, character hero with borderline, unexplained power, fantastical motive. So that the place, not only exists in space, but also gains significance of holy, sacred, on which a contact is possible with the supernatural, with God, the reason for that is the memory, which carries the miracle that happened there before. Included in this research are exemplar models of the miraculous proyavlenie (healing, salvation).

Section 2. Theoretical models and conceptions for the semantic measurements and specifics of the toposes obrok and ayazmo.
This part of the work is dedicated to the genealogy of the votive system. An experiment is conducted, in order to allow the following of the process of its birth, when did the votive offerings first started, in which historical moment to look for their roots and their votive honouring. In the same concept, a particular circle of written sources leave valuable historical hints and descriptions of the researched thematic, which helps understand the causal relation of the mix between antiquity and modernity. For example, Saint Clement of Ohrid in praise to our blessed father and slavic teacher Cyril Filosof (philosopher) mentions the destroying of a sacred place /marked with a tree/; the Old Bulgarian story, dating X cent. Miracle of the Saint George with the Bulgarian allows us to source information about the attempts to eradicate the language culture, of the sacrificial rites: in his History of the Bulgarians Constantine Jireček includes a part of medieval text from XIV cent., which gives information about the existence of votive cult places and the conduction of sacrificial rites.
Old proof for a votive cross is the painting of the German traveller Martin Gruneweg, from 1582. From the same year, dated is the votive cross from the town of Vulchedrum /Montana prov./, located in Kyunina Chuka, found and recorded by T. Gerasimov in 1962. Based on reading the inscription, the author believes that it dates from the 16th century, and is dedicated to St Cyril and Yulita /15th of July/. As votive, V. Mutafov defines the cross from the painting of captain Šad (Shad) dating 1740. In the manuscript of Count Luigi Marsili from 1678, mentioned is the votive cult ritual in an undefined village around Plovdiv or Pavlikeni. In this thesis, followed are scientific historical-ethnological works and analysis on the topic from the end of XIXc. as well, up until this moment, classificational approaches of different authorities, local historical studying and descriptions, that affect and define the directions for explorations.
In the spirit of its own time, D. Marinov brings the attention to the spells as a major ritualistic technique for the expulsion of evil spirits and appeasement. The votive processions he divides into two categories - common and private. According to their functional direction, the common he associates with the toponyms - votive offering, record, undercross for protection of the villages area and assembly - for health of the village people. Towards the private celebrations he brings the service/rite of the cooperative, the family, individual and offering - to protect the property. According to the peoples faith he interprets the rites as an act of linguistic scarification rites in christian clothing.
For the Kyustendil region, a significant contribution on the topic is made by the famous Bulgarian scientist Yordan Zahariev. His detailed works, looks, conserves, processes and systemises the facts, as it strives to expose the gathered empiric in its own maximal authenticity and reliable type. In his capacious works Kyustendilskoto Krayshte, Kamenitsa,Piyanets, Kyustendilskata Kotlovina, the author describes geography, history, and typology of the settlements, vocation, elderness, also location and naming of the consecrations, holy waters.
At the end of the 70s of XX cent. The National institute for Memorials of culture beggins major terrainial studyings for real estate archeological memorials in different parts of the country, with its sole purpose to create a State Register. Many archeologists localised and documented many consecrational places and their markers. One of the earlier studies is by Rafail Popov in Vraca, the regions of Pleven, and Pernik are done by Dimitrina Mitova - Djonova. Within the Perniks province, Vasilka Paunova registers three consecrational places, dedicated to St. Spas. For the territory of Kyustendils province are appointed Veneta Genadieva and Stefan Chohadzhiev. In 2004, Kosta Hadzhiev - epigraph, Marlena Krusteva - archeologist, Andrey Tonev, numismate, at the time of the terranea walks of the western periphery of Mrakata region - historical-geographical territory, situated on three municipalities Radomir, Kovatchevtsi, and Zemen, they register tracks on cultical places - two consecrations, dedicated to St. George and St Spas, and ayazmo. Peter Petrov brings his attention to the nascency and the characteristics, on the type of circle-like votive memorials from Western Bulgaria, in 59 settlements within the reason of Godech.
A major role in preservation , description and picturising of the votive tradition has the art historian study of Ivan Enchev - Vidyu Bulgarski naroden krust. His paintings /aquarelle and ink/, photographs, and sketches of gravestonial and votive crosses, are exceptionally important, especially for places on which the tracks of consecration marks are missing from the cultical area. Iva Lyubenovas monograph I grobovete umirat is dedicated to the memorial stone plastic, within the late medieval and renaissance. From the perspective of functioning and semantic features, the memorials grouped on gravestones, gravial, and votive /of the type cross-like and isosceles/. Popular and valuable array of data for the technological and style features of the memorial votive artificiality are the publication of V. Mutafov. The Genealogy of the votive system he considers as an echo from the ancient lingual cult towards nature, the places for consecrations in the bulgarian votive celebrations, forms, namings, sacral spaces, classifications. Bonnie Petrunova, Valery Grigorov, and Nadya Manolova - Nikolova conduct archeological - ethnological studying of votive crosses, late-medieval and renaissance churches and in Western Bulgaria, actual Godech, Dragoman and Tryn. The author of the mograph Svetilishta, razdeleni s granitsa Zdenka Todorova searches and studies Bulgarian svetini /churches, chapels, monasteries, consecrations, votive crosses, mirosani durveta and others./ from both sides of the bulgarian-serbian border in search of the mutual historical relationships and typologically similar parallels. Miglena Petkova has been working on the votive system and its foundation within the village society for many years. The results from the terranea work, the conclusions from the made analysis and typologisations Petkova publishes many scientific editions, cited in this thesis. Sreten Igov writes about the manifestation of the Obrochnite krustove - cultical sign on the territory of Dimitrovgrads region and others.
The mentioned review of scientific publications is for sure not exhausted solely by the cited names, but illustrates the fact, that the complex researches and interpretations offer valuable information for the sacred topography of a given region, for the process of sacralisation of the given place, contain factology, reach to historical layers with cultic life, rethinked in accordance to the tradition of the time up until today.

Section 3. Theoretical models and conceptions for the semantic measurements and specification of the toposes obrok and ayazmo. This part of the text will cover the cultural matrix of the votive system and ayazmas - their regional specifications of functioning, that helps searching the different and specific in the studied regions. The name obrok has a dual semantic. From the perspective of the sacral aspect, this is a vow, gift, sacrificial ritual in the system of the bulgarian calendar ceremonies, dedicated to the mother of God, Christ or the Christian saint - displacing the mythical spirit-patron of a particular area. To an extent, it is used as a marking concept for the actual votive place.
A more common variants, projected in names and connected with the main topos obrok are: consecrations; churchyard; monastery; chapel; church; butter / probably related to the rite maslosvet - butter sanctification votive offering; (consecrations -kurbanishte), and the gathering place (soborishte); named after a saint, on which day the sacrificial rites are made or based on the national naming on that day; namings, personally related names/families, that support or in whom properties the specific rites are made, et cetera.
The position of the votive memorial in the territorial structure of the settlement is different, depending on the eco-type of the village / mountain based /semi-mountain based or whether the village is situated on ground level and the votive rite specific of the case is different in that scenario. Traditionally, the consecration is located within or around an inhabited place, in order to protect the assimilated from the individual cultural stretch, transformed from an element of nature in the sacralised territory, to provide with health and well-being the people and animals. Many of the consecrational toposes are situated in close proximity to rocks, caves, on crossroads, or near a water source, near a century old tree or a group of trees, religiously celebrated.
The consecration within the cultic space is marked by its corresponding symbol of holiness - a large rock, stone or wooden made cross, stone tiles, columns, chapels. The technique of arrangementing is graphical - with the help of curved lines, yielding - forming the embossed elements and by mixing the two types together. The physical structure of the stone is from a local rock, most often sandstone, granite, e.g.. Most of the crosses are made there at the place from stonemasons, in accordance with the local tradition, the skills and artistic techniques of the craftsmans.
Connected with the cult of St. Ivan Rilski, its exceptionally impressive with its /height 2,60m and width of the shoulders 2,10m/ the votive cross from the village of Vetren /Piyanets/. The area is called Krustati kamik - crossed rock within the Damyanskas neighbourhood, situated in the east part of the Ossogovos mountain range.
In addition to the material and the format, Mutafov separates a few types of votive memorials; unprocessed stone cores /often with a carved cross sign/ or tiles of irregular shapes, some of which dating from the XVIII - XIX cent.; wooden crosses of different sizes, typical for the Southwestern Bulgaria and the Rhodopes, dating back from the first half of the 20th century; stone rectangular slabs with cross signs, some with symbols and inscriptions, common in Western and Central Northern Bulgaria, dating from the 19th century; various in shape and size stone crosses, dating from the 16th to the middle of the 20th century; chapels /brick or stone buildings; wooden ones can also be found/ in the region of Southern Bulgaria and especially in Strandzha, the Rhodopes, Rila, Pirin for the period from the XVIII to the 40s of the XXth cent. symbols, folklore motifs, biblical characters / angels, seraphim, cherubs/, inscriptions engraved on the votive monuments, are not artistic ornamentations, but instead coded semantics. Decorated votive sculptures are an apotropaic symbol, often associated with the cult of the sun, a kind of spell that is to ask for health, prosperity, and to ward off harmful effects. Along with the depicted solar signs, floral and geometric ornaments, the main element of the decoration is the presence of the cross sign in different variants - both the shape of the cross and engraved on the stone. An additional plastic motif in the cross silhouette is the bukel /apple/, placed on the upper and on the side shoulders. At the semantic level, the apple in Christendom is a prototype of original sin and redemption. Folk knowledge conceives the fruit as a model of fertility, fertilization, love, wisdom, and as a sign of salvation. Typologically, the votive ritual action can be divided into two groups along the line of public/family. One includes the villages votive places, the subject of which is the entire rural community. In the second case, the ritual is experienced by the entire family, the famiglia, the clan and is carried out as a place and organisation of the individual home. Along with the proposed division, the consecrated places can be designated in a more specific categorical scope: family cult sites / protect the property of the family and its members /; genera / surnames of one genus/; group / families of different genera in the settlement/; inter-villages / bordering the lands of several settlements. Depending on the type of the settlements spatial organisation, as well as on the agrarian property as itself, transitional variations are possible - transformation of the group cult site into inter-village, family into group, et cetera.
Following this categorical regularity explains the fact that the leading peculiar characteristic of the vows is mainly based on territorial principle. In the studied settlements from Kyustendil region most of the consecrations are neighborhood based, common village based, and inter-settlement based. There are rare cases, in which the determining factor is the generas.
In view of the assimilation and playback of the sacred essence of the topos, its functions are determinant: protective - produces the creation of an adjacent sacred protective zone around the cult site; apotropaic - ritual, embodies the idea of a sacred space; regulatory - affects the "communication" with nature for warding against natural disasters, to ensure health, fertility, to fill a person with faith and positive emotionality; communicative - a wider social contact is achieved; integrative - generates a sense of belonging and self-identification with the group. The operating status of the functions does not imply gradation. Their significance is determined by the specific occasion, unfolded on a certain day, with specific ritual actions, participants, etc. Thus, the structured and generating nature of the ritual results in the implementation of a communicative act, ie. contact with the supernatural, the boundary beyond space-time and the receipt of a communicant-result, i.e. realisation of the need of the individual / society.
In comparison with the folk tradition of the practice, it is distinguished by a specific motive for obtaining (by prayer) protection from drought, hails, floods, fires, etc. This dimension, important for the livelihood of the settlement community, for the agricultural activity, a mark of time for honoring the rites. It is most often associated with spring - summer or with the autumnal holidays, when the danger of natural disasters is at its pique.
The cultic act is formed by the sacrificial practice. This dissertation examines the meaning of the blood scarification practice and the sacred nature of the common celebratory table. Sacrificial rites are well attested in our folk tradition as an important emblematic and a sustainable ritual product. It is understood as a kind of sacrament, a kind of "general feast" for ostentatious expression of a request / gratitude to the transcendent.
In structure and symbolism it is bloodless and/or bloodful. Ritual breads, wine, fruits and vegetables are symbolically offered for the bloodless. The blood sacrifice is universally known as a sacrificial rite - vowing an animal with a prayer for health of people, livestock, for prosperity, personal and universal well-being, for protection from natural disasters. Scarification as a "communication" between the profane and the sacred world fits into both the personal and the collective dimension. It is a ritualistic model of celebration, manifested at different levels in the social structure.
Asya Popova registers and analyzes the performed sacrifices, on the one hand through the rite-donor, the initiator of the ritual action / men or women / and the rite-recipient / spirits of ancestors, saints /. On the other hand, it structures the rite in a complex way in two directions, regarding the gift practices: horizontal / profane /, related to the internal social environment and vertical direction / sacrificial /, directed to the world of the deity. The form of the gift manifestation differs from the ordinary gift precisely in the object of ritual veneration - it is not intended for the individual, but as a gift to God and the saints. The sacrifice can be pardoning, redemptive,of gratitude, protective, and purifying. The main protagonists of each sacrificial rite are: recipients - deities, saints and others. transcendent forces in their capacity as defenders / enemies, patrons / pests; rite-donors - individuals or groups; priest - a priest, an agnath or less often a cognate elder; performers - butchers, cooks, etc. assistants; victim - blood / bloodless; beneficiaries - all diners at the collective ritual feast. D. Marinov focuses his ethnological interest on three main elements, structuring the semantic field of the folk sacrificial donor cycle: the rites- a gift, ritual breads, incense.
The direction of the sacrificial action is characterised by spatial fixation and calendar localisation. The ritual needs blood to spray on the votive sign, for the prayer to be heard and the rite "to please God." Types of domestic, healthy animals without visible scars such as blindness, disabilities, thin physique, etc. are chosen for the ritual. Preferred are the sheep or rams, lamb, calf, rarely bullock. The culinary preparation of meat is a cooked rite that is consummated by everyone. Everyone has to eat at least a small amount of the rite, in order to be healthy and to prosper throughout the year. As part of the festive table, instructions for worshipping are given, a prayer, an incensement or acts of spraying with holy water are performed, which is done by the elder of the family or by a priest. The presence of bread on the ritual table is mandatory as a symbol of fertility and a kind of bloodless sacrific rite. The semantic characteristics and connection of the bread with the rite is traced in the technology of bread kneading, naming and functioning - lifting, breaking, giving away for health, well-being, gratitude, accompanied with blessings as a kind of verbal magic. The material is transformed into sacred, through the ordered ritual and the mental energy. It is through the forms of the ritual and the festivities, on verbal and emotional level, that the "remoteness" in the search for separate groups is erased and the unification of social relations and symbolic contact with the divine within the sacrifice-sacrifice is issued. A characteristic ritual dish is also kolivoto/ boiled sweetened wheat /. As it goes through the power of water and fire, and swells to symbolise abundance and prosperity. The blood sacrifice is promised for a specific time period or every year on a specific date, so when the ritual is not executed, a misfortune will follow, it is believed.
To call a sacrifice is not just a matter of materialised action, a passive structural element in the ritual practices of the kinship, settlement or confessional group, but a kind of ritual offering of proximity to the borderline of anticipation of needed help, superhuman strengths and capabilities. The leading emphasis that the rules impose is the belief in the power of sacrifice as a generally admitted ritual in need of salvation, of gratitude.
Further in the study, the regularity and functioning of the sacrificial rituals specifically in the Kyustendil region are considered. The presented analyses are an attempt to interpret the combination of votive and church festivities, to trace the picture of today's votive offering of a sacrifice. In many cases, the date of the temple celebrations coincides with the service of the rite. According to popular opinions, only the local population, that lives in the village, can participate in the conduct of the village / neighborhood service. The sacrifice is an expression of increased significance, while the holy water is not an obligatory national sign of the votive offering. The temple patron saint's day is for everyone who comes to church and lights a candle for health, the sacrifice is not obligatory. Often the event grows into a village gathering, that can be attended by guests from other places. If it falls on the day of the meal, the service is organised until noon, and then the feast begins. Over the years, the position of the villages temple holiday has proved to be more stable.
An object of attention on the part of the author is also the spring with its health impact. The aim for this part of the dissertation is to present in depth and accuracy the symbolic characteristic of the holy water, the cult of its semantic dimensions. The beneficial effects of spring water have been known throughout all historical stages in the evolution of human civilisation. From unremembered times, it has been characterised by unusualness and supernaturalness. The sacred spring is called ayazmo, or yazmo. The etymology of the word is of Greek origin and means "sanctified object", holy water that springs near a cult object and therefore contains the concept of sanctity and healing.
In essence, some holy spirits are established and revered in the past as old consecrations. In the classical case, the healing water is recognised in the form of a fountain, well, spring, situated in a building, in a cave, or out in the open. Its miraculous properties are manifested differently - in childless, mentally ill, deaf, body wounds, etc., but most often heals eye damage.
In our ethnological literature the complex of topics about the ritual manifestations of water, the power of healing and sacred springs, the offering of gifts to water sources, legends and myths, is focused and problematised by a number of researchers, such as Dimitar Marinov, Mihail Arnaudov, Stoyu Shishkov, Ivanichka Georgieva, Valeria Fol, Yordanka Mankova, Svetlozara Koleva and others. Their interpretive models of explanation, valuable in research and methodological terms, affect the functional orientation in the light of its own sacred projection and beneficial power.
Included in the ritual-magical performance, the water source loses its utilitarian functions and becomes a sacred center, whereas the water becomes the object of cult worship and among main ritual purposes. The healing ritual consists of splashing the face and drinking, combined with sincere prayer. The water can also be taken home. A ritual option for healing is for the sick to spend the night sleeping near healing springs. People also follow the ancient ritual universality to put coins in the spring, tie threads, leave clothes, towels, et cetera, donations - gifts. Finally, the individual crosses himself and leaves without looking back, so as not to "return" the health or social problem back to the person. What is left is not to be taken by another, so as not to "take" the disease. The donations can only be collected by a specific person called an "epitrope" / "vissia" who takes care of the site and brings the donations to a church. In some places water is consecrated, sacrifices are made, ritual breads are brought and given away for health. To a certain extent, the meaning of this structure-forming ritual is related with the folklore-mythological notion of appeasing the "master-saibia", inhabitant, master, guardian of the water.
The tracing and presentation of the essential components of the development of the sacred centers of the type of rites and healing springs, confirms their role as centers of holiness and miracles, for prosperity and healing.
The dynamics of the sacred space, in terms of marking, cults, festivity, outlines two layers of time - past and present. Empirical material shows that these "silent" shrines leave a long historical trace in time, flow with their energetic rhythm and regularity. Although not always understood and perceived by the modern man, ancient cult traditions are part of the genealogy of human development.

Part Two /p. 71-210/ - Local sacred places in Kyustendil
In this chapter the main emphasis is on the local peculiarities of the rites and the holy springs /ayazmas/ in Kyustendil region, related to form, symbolism, functionality, performed rituals, transformation. The whole factology of what was read, seen and heard in the field has been introduced. The chapter is divided into 4 sections.

Section 1. Kyustendil Region
Represents in alphabetical order the settlements from the Kyustendil Region. It consists of 25 villages. Of these, in 9 are registered 18 votive places and 5 holy places.
Section 2. Kamenitsa
Represents in alphabetical order the settlements of Kamenitsa. The region covers 27 settlements. In 23 of them are 35 consecrated places and ayazmas.
Section 3. Piyanets
Represents in alphabetical order the settlements from Piyanets. 26 settlements belong to the district. In 23 of them are 46 consecrated places and 7 ayazmas.
Section 4. The Kyustendil hollow
Represents in alphabetical order the settlements from the Kyustendil hollow. There are 44 settlements in it. In 31 of them there is data for 50 consecrated places and 15 holy waters.

Based on the presented material, some conclusions are made. To a certain extent, the rites are a reference point for the relocation of the individual settlements. They are a sign of assimilated cultural space. In the Kyustendil region they are organized on a territorial basis. They are maintained by neighborhoods or the village collective. Bright is the continuity of the cult connection rite - church and vice versa, preserved consecration with a temple built next to it or built on the ruins of an old church. Sometimes its construction is explained by the presence of a spring, a miraculous story, a dream. The purpose of the placement is to protect the land from natural disasters, fertility in the fields, human health, protection of animals from disease. Such is Fr. "St. George in the village of Mazarachevo. The sacrifice is done for the health of the animals, of th goods. In the village of Gorna Brestnitsa until 1956 a sacrifice was given to Ilinden for breeding.
In some cases, the written information and the data collected in the field turned out to be insufficient to trace the exact origin and functioning of the targeted cult sites. Although the memory is not stored, the collected information allows for a comprehensive presentation of holy places such as votive offerings and ayazmas. The question of when and why they are revered on the day is most often followed by the answer "they have been standing here since time immemorial." This explanation undoubtedly shows the significant role of the past of the settlement society, and the preserved folk tradition.
In the studied villages from the 4 historical-geographical districts of Kyustendil there is specificity regarding the etymology of the villages names. Old records from the Ottoman registers make it possible to identify the villages. During certain historical epochs, they changed their location for a number of reasons - population growth, better living conditions, plague epidemics, resettlement, Ottoman violence. Many of the villages are old medieval settlements. The lands of most of them are large. There are also small, and infertile settlements. The scope of the rural land and its economic development, as well as the resettlement are important for the dynamics and development of the votive system, for the territory of the sacred zone.
Based on the variety of shapes and decorations, votive memorial sculptures can be classified into two categories. Such from the end of the XIX.th century -of the type Latin, Maltese, with trapezoidal and rectangular shoulders, with plastic images. The second group includes votive monuments from the beginning of the XX.th century - they consist of a pedestal with a cross on it, marble tiles, small wooden chapels, wooden crosses.
A characteristic ritual manifestation for the society is the collective sacrificial celebration. The cult of St. Elijah, St. Spas, Holy Trinity, St. George, St. Ivan Rilski, Holy Mother of God, St. Dimitar, St. Peter, St. Petka. The patron saints to whom sacrifices are offered are, in a way, intercessors before the supreme power of the Universe.
The distribution of holy waters in the Kyustendil region is proof for the faith of the local population in the health power of the springs. For centuries, they have been that sacred act in which, through the visible - the ritual washing, the invisible is reached - one crosses the boundaries of matter and seeks the supernatural.
Conditionally, the holy waters can be grouped depending on: ritual practices; their location - in the land, in the village, in the open, in a cave, next to an ancient tree, in a chapel; of the type - spring, fountain, well; the time for visiting - on any day or on a specific date of the holiday calendar. At the holy spring, on the territory of the Kyustendil region, the performed ritual practices show a certain local diversity. The most common actions are tossing coins, tying threads from the sick individuals clothes. Candles are lit at some places. Flowers, donations, breads are also brought as a bloodless sacrifice. A sacrifice is made less often. At the core of all these rituals, lies the idea of receiving the most desired gift from God - health.
There are also settlements in which the ayazmas are polluted, and have lost their magical healing effect. As criteria, leading indicators in this direction can be: modern attitudes and notions, loss of faith in the power of water, atheistic views of some people, drying up and disappearance of the spring due to changes in the terrain - paving roads, deforestation of forests, etc., remoteness from the settlement, which leads to difficulties in maintenance of the water source, depopulation of the villages. For example, the holy waters in the villages of Lozno, Radlovtsi, Rasovo, Slokoshtitsa and others are doomed into oblivion. On the other hand, the living memory can be the many places called "Holy Water" in the individual villages and their lands.
For the holy places there is an unwritten strict prohibition on encroachments on them. The faith that the appropriation of a material thing from the sacred space is also sacrilege and is punishable.
It can be concluded that the highlighted specificity is interesting and its research deserves to be continued.

Part Three /p. 211-243/ - Sacred topography of the Boboshevo, Nevestino, Kocherinovo, Rila, Rilas Monastery areas- local identity of the votive system and the springs of the different settlements
An emblematic example on the topic of a cult settlement tradition for the whole region is Boboshevsko. Within the studied geographical area of 11 settlements is located the presence of 40 places of worshipping, 20 votive monuments, 10 holy waters and many churches and chapels. The chapter is divided into two sections.

Section 1. It covers the Boboshevo region - the town of Boboshevo and neighboring villages - Vukovo, Dobrovo and Skrino.

Section 2. It includes settlements from Nevestino municipality / s. Dolna Koznitsa, Murvodol and Pastuh /, Kocherinovska / Frolosh and Tsarvaritsa /, Rila, Rila Monastery.
The component structure of the holy places / the many churches, chapels, votive crosses, the ayazmas (holy water)/ and their role as organising cores of the settlement space are presented.
In the Boboshevo region, most holy places are marked with chapels erected on old churches. There are also stone crosses, ancient trees, small wooden chapels that are raised from the ground up. The principle of organising the cult places here is also territorial, depending on the spatial organisation of the region, as well as on the agrarian property, which at the beginning of the XX.th century is small, and fragmented.
Revered saints are St. Elijah, St. George, the Holy Mother of God, St. Peter and Paul, St. Archangel Michael, St. Spas, St. Petka, St. Nicholas. The overall organisation of the holiday and the preparation of the votive offering with a ritual table in honor of the saint, has its inclusive effect for maintenance, overlaying interpersonal relationships.
Against the background of the common village participation, that of relatives, friends, former inhabitants of the settlement or their heirs, often provoked to return to the roots on the day of the holiday, is also significant.
Popular in the southwestern Bulgarian lands is the cult of St. Ivan Rilski. A number of caves, places, rites, chapels, churches, springs, are interconnected with the saint during his lifetime or with his relics, acquiring a special sacredness and magic.
The possible reasons for the abundance and diversity of religious sites such as consecrated places, chapels, churches in the Boboshevo region can be sought in several directions, one of which is the convenient geographical and strategic location. Important road arteries pass through the area, since antiquity, which have retained their significance in the Middle Ages. Such is the road Pautalia - Boboshevo - Skaptopara, traced on the left bank of river Struma, passing through the villages of Nevestino, Pastuh / Zhytomisk /, Skrino and Boboshevo, as well as through the Skrina gorge. Traces of this road have been found near Boboshevo and in the gorge of Struma, northwest of the village Vukovo. A road from Skaptopara, west of Boboshevo through Frolosh to Pautalia, is also attested. As possible arguments it is appropriate to point out the special status of the Boboshevo villages during the Ottoman period, the economic prosperity, the faith, the preserved traditions and last but not least the spiritual need.
Such shrines have a high degree of special charisma and potential for local identity, preserved cultural memory, faith, expectations, gratitude for the desired result, striving for peace of mind and harmony. The possibilities of today's modern communications definitely contribute to the spread and assimilation of knowledge about the holy places, increasing the interest in the religious as a spiritual experience, contrasting with ordinary everyday life.

Conclusion /p. 244-255/

The conclusion consists of the main conclusions reached during the course of the work. The specific study of the individual settlements clearly illustrates the saturated presence of religious sites, the dynamics in the assimilation of the sacred space. They are conceived as sacred points scattered along the original territorial boundaries, in order to ensure the security of the settlement. They are of special importance to the religious life of the local people - there are sacrifices for health and prosperity, prayers for rain and fertility, candles are lit, donations are left. In total, 114 settlements in the Kyustendil region were studied. 188 votive places, 75 votive monuments and 48 holy waters are located. 219 votive offerings, 79 services, and 38 councils are registered. Family meetings and military services were held in some places. These are significant rural events, which in a way outline the connection with the family, the village and the shared memory of the past.
As a whole, both the votive system and the holy waters share all-Bulgarian peculiarities of living and functioning. At the same time, they have clear regional characteristics, caused by the local tradition and faith, livelihood of the population, natural-geographical conditions, and cult continuity.
In the course of work, a detailed analysis of the votive system and the topos "holy spring - ayazmo" was prepared, including temporal and spatial localisation, sacred projection, structure of the rite accompanying the cult place, functionality of the sacrificial event with a joint table, continuity. On the basis of the comparative method cultural-historical complexes are presented , ritual models, typical for neighboring regions.
Rites are most actively created or renewed within the boundaries of the traditional village - within the outlines of society or in the land
In the sacralized space there is a bright cultic acceptance. The motives for the erection of the votive monument can be related to a dream, a miracle, a sign, an unhappiness, finding a sacred object.
Depending on the shape, type and material, there are several types of votive monuments.
Stone crosses: Attested in Kotlovina and Piyanets. The stone is sandstone. The technique used by the craftsmen is graphic and mixed. Most have trapezoidal / rectangular shoulders, Maltese cross, Latin. The decoration on the obverse is represented by simple cross images, inscribed in a circle rosette, defined as a sun symbol, a stylised cross "clover", plastically shaped curls on the sides of the shoulders, incised line / single or double /, outlining the silhouette of the waist. Individual samples are also distinguished by more complex compositions, with inscriptions. There are also modern marble crosses. The two stone crosses in the Kocherinovo villages of Frolosh / are similar in shape and decoration to the Kyustendil ones. Fr "St. Elijah / and Tsarvishte / fr "St. Bogoroditsa /, which are without bouquels and with an incised line at the end. The Tsarvishki has no decoration, and the Froloshki has a composition of two Maltese crosses. Of the registered votive crosses in the Kyustendil region, there is no presence of circular / characteristic of Western Bulgaria / and stems / in the Sofia region /, with the exception of Isle"St. German in the village of Zhabokrat.
A sign of sacredness are stone tiles, with which Fr. "St. Spas in the village of Lozno and Fr. "St. Atanas / marble / in the village of Tavalichevo.
Small wooden chapels raised from the ground are a symbolic projection in some villages of the hollow and Kamenitsa, described in the dissertation. Wooden crosses are found mainly in Kamenitsa. Centuries-old trees are characteristic to the four areas. The most common are oaks, called "holy", "berekernitsi", "crossed - krustati". They are a symbol of the connection with paganism.
There are also those with the presence of several elements: Fr. in the Krasto-Blato locality in the village of Vetren - a century-old tree, a stone cross and a baptismal font, Fr. "St. Spas in the village of Tsarvaritsa /Piyanets/ - stone cross, font and bowl; about. "St. Bogoroditsa in the village of Gorna Grashtitsa - two stone crosses and a holy spring with a chapel, Fr. "St. Spas in Ranentsi / wooden cross, cut stone and base for a column /, etc.
Many of the monuments in a number of Kyustendil villages have been destroyed and data on the sites is scarce. Although they have no sign of holiness, the population associates them with legends, mysteries and wonders, with ancient sanctuaries and does not question their authenticity and sacred function.
It can be concluded that the presence and form of the votive sign are subject to certain laws related to the cultic continuity in the village, its geographical features, finding material, local tradition, the presence of craftsmen stonemasons and their skills, the cultural needs of residents, attitude towards the past, the economic factor. The Hollow is distinguished by its variety. It is characterised by favorable geographical, climatic and hydrographic conditions, fertile soil. It spreads over a large area, through which the rivers Struma, Dragovishtitsa, Bistritsa, Banshtitsa, and Novoselska flow. It is no coincidence that 21 holy places were honored. Most villages are purchased. They are located not far from the city of Kyustendil, which affects their way of life and culture. In the hard-to-reach mountainous areas of the Kraishte, Kamenitsa and Piyanets, the villages are scattered, the neighborhoods are remote and most of the votive places are marked with a tree or a wooden cross / a small wooden chapel. In cases where there are no signs, most are destroyed in time. In an effort to preserve the sacred monument somewhere, the locals updated the votive sign. Such is the cross made of woodpeckers and placed on an old oak at Fr. "St. Elijah in the village of Frolosh, newer is Fr. "St. Peter and Paul in the village of Tsarvishte, Fr. in the village of Nedelkova Grashtitsa in the locality of Soborishteto and others.
Unlike the Kyustendil votive stones or wooden crosses, tiles, stone, wood, in the Boboshevo region chapels predominate. Some places are also marked with modern pedestals with a cross on top or iconostasis raised from the ground. The wooden chapels in Kocherinovo municipality are similar to the ones in Kyustendil.
The observed cult sites are dedicated to certain Christian saints who, if worshiped, patronise and ward the believing laity and their territory from misfortunes and natural disasters. The people's faith in their miraculous power continues to be alive, and respect for them requires a strict ban on encroachment on the sacred place and everything around it - trees, water, cross, stone. Very often the name of the saint gives the name of the place. The cult of St. Ivan saint is expressed in the separate settlements. St. Ivan Rilski, St. Elijah, St. George, Holy Mother of God, St. Peter and Paul, St. Dimitar, St. Archangel Michael, St. Spas, St. Petka. Depending on the functions of the saints, the population performed rituals to pray for fertility and protect the land from natural disasters, to prevent disease and health, to protect animals, of the home.
On Saint's day, the service is organised in the afternoon. The collective sacrificial feast is accompanied by the consecration and incensing of food and the common table, the consecration of water, the lighting of candles, the utterance of prayers and blessings. The people gather most often at the consecration, the local church or in the school yard. There are three moments in the ritual celebration: giving a blood sacrifice, preparing ritual breads and oscillation, and consecration. In some villages such as Vaksevo and Smolichano / Piyanets / wheat is not cooked. The sacrificial animal, a bullock(in ancient times) or a sheep, is purchased with common funds. The sacrifice is slaughtered with the blessing of the eldest man in the village. A priest consecrates the common table, separately the cauldrons with the sacrifice, the wheat. In the past, the table was lined up on the ground, each family and neighborhood has its place.
Some places have preserved stones on which the families sat, such as the stone slabs at the church "St. Nikola in the village of Zhilentsi. In the villages of Tishanovo and Tsarvaritsa, for example, a division of men and women is observed at the joint table. Local features are also found in the area of Boboshevo. No blessing or prayer is said during the sacrificial ritual. The votive sign or the walls of the chapel are sprayed with the blood of the sacrificial animal. Over time, the holiday with the sacrifice, the service, the gathering proceeds with a changed rhythm, with interruptions and renewals, caused mainly by circumstances such as state policy, impoverishment, aging of the population, change of residence and others. The modern sacrificial celebration has a changed significance, influenced by the new times, by the contradicting religious attitudes of the participants in the rite.
The holy springs, on the territory of Kyustendil region, most often helps with eye pains. The performed ritual practices are tossing coins, tying threads. In order to gain health, candles are lit, in some places gifts are left, bread is broken as a bloodless sacrifice, for example the holy spring in the village of Vaksevo / locality of Tsokanitsa /, in the village of Smolichano, near the rock in the town of Rila. In order to catch a cure in the spring of the village of Dragoychintsi, one goes early in the morning and puts on a new garment. A sacrifice is made at the holy water between Gramazhdano and Vartashevo on St. George's Day. The holy water in the village of Konyavo still has the functions of a consecration place.
In practical and applied terms, the field work brought out some problematic situations that made it difficult to obtain and study empirical material. Such are the poor infrastructure, the difficult access to the holy place in a mountainous or forested area, in a private property; the demographic collapse in a large part of the studied settlements - the aging and depopulation of the population, due to high mortality, migration, impoverishment, which inevitably leads to the attenuation of the functions of the local cult ritual, to the irreversible loss of information about it.
The symbols and signs on the obverse of some of the votive monuments have been erased overtime or are covered with moss and this complicates their reading. There are also places with traces of vandalism, deliberately destroyed or broken votive monuments. This accompanying problem greatly complicates the "visual integrity" of the sacred spaces and their characteristic ritual practices, the possibility of combining cult tradition and modernity. Despite these facts, the above review allows a comprehensive presentation of the holy places of the type of rites and ayazmas.
Theoretical and practical searches for the formation of a common concept for their protection require not only scientific interest, not only legal framework for solving problems, but also increasing the role of society in this process, forming respect and values in the individual. An important factor in this regard is the museum. One of its main tasks is to search for, study, preserve, promote both movable and immovable cultural values. Museum workers have a leading role in field research, expeditions, archaeological excavations. Participation in scientific conferences and symposia provides an opportunity to debate current issues and trends regarding the care and maintenance of the millennial heritage. A specific approach in the overall work of the museum are the developments and participation in thematic projects. In this regard, the Regional Historical Museum "Acad. Yordan Ivanov realised two expeditions on projects - one in 2006 - 2007. under the program "good neighbouring" Bulgaria - Republic of Macedonia "Together on the sacred places of Mount Osogovo" and the other period for the 2012 - 2013 under the program Cross-border cooperation with the Republic of Macedonia "Cultural heritage of our ancestors - spiritual foundations for our common European future." As a result of the work, a rich archive of data was accumulated to clarify the essential aspects of the topic and the specifics of the spatial parameters. A photo exhibition entitled "Together on the sacred places of the Osogovo mountain" was also exhibited.
Meaningful through the focus of modern life, some of the rites and the ayazmas continue their function, many exist schematically, others are obliterated, not maintained and forgotten, perhaps due to difficult access to them, depopulation of villages, ideological restrictions of the mid-twentieth century, etc. Regardless of the case, they are and will be significant, necessary centers with a tangible sacred dimension for irrational salvation and for the healing of the body and soul. It is the ritual of the holy places, tested over the millennia, for neutralising crisis situations, that can be an incentive for a new rediscovery of the sacred topography within the Kyustendil region.
Exploring the holy places shows that they existed and continue to exist in cohabitation with nature and man. They are not only concepts of spatial-geographical nature, but also monuments that convey and preserve holiness. They are significant values of culture, historicity, religiosity. They can provide peace of mind for the person and his intimate experiences - problems, fears, hopes and dreams. This is a world of sacredness, mystery, secrets, and energy. The ways in which people practice the faith and seek values and strength to overcome their mental suffering and anxiety are diverse. Maybe future generations will discover them and experience new values for the existence of Bulgarian culture and tradition!

Contributing characteristics of the thesis
1.The thesis has its specific optics on the study of sacred topography, on the projections of the discourse for presentation, construction, and interpretation.
For the first time a comprehensive and in-depth study of holy places has been made as a regular part of the modern cultural environment of the Kyustendil region. A significant number of rites and holy waters have been discovered and put into scientific circulation - more or less known. Contributors to the work are the reflected unpublished and hitherto unknown objects. The scientific research presents their visual and textual interpretation, contains findings and summaries. In its essence, the work is a synthesis of a new research product.
2. The relevance of the research is determined by the need to develop a model for localisation, analysis, evaluation and publicity of the targeted topic in order to overcome its limitations. Holy places are distinguished by their local structure, symbolism, technique, functionality and significance in the social existence of the individual and the community. It is this regional identity that arouses interest and current research topics.
3. The work provides an opportunity to trace the fate of specific sacral topos by analyzing the processes of origin, functioning and transformation of knowledge and practices, cultural and historical layers associated with them.
4. At the heart of this study is a comprehensive scientific approach to religious monuments - "amalgam" sacred geography - form - myth - ritual. The concept of the sacred space as a "place of faith" is discussed, where the ethnocultural element and the individual experience meet the harmonization between tradition and modernity in the cognitive field of hagiography, and in the world of mythology. The cultural layer of the spiritual centers is observed and comprehended through the prism of the bearers of knowledge and experience and on the basis of the written sources.
5. The thesis discusses essential issues concerning the symbolic characteristics of the sacrum - the measure of the sacred in the ephemeral world of the profane, the need and faith in cross-border, local cults of saints, ritual practices, communication and integration of the sacred place, functioning and dynamics of development of the cult object, contextualized within the theoretical basis in which the research is placed.
6. Next, a rich empiricism with a multi-layered nature is used. In the course of the research work a detailed analysis of the votive system and the topos "holy spring - ayazmo" was prepared, including localisation, structure, symbolism, classification, significance in the social existence of the individual and the community. This empirical material would be a useful basis for a series of future studies.
7. The forms through which, mentally, the holy places exist in the life of the human community are sought. The relationship man - nature - deity, including the semantic chain; health - fertility - well-being based on faith and the interaction between the canonical religious worldview and local folklore.
8. Contribution is the application of the comparative method, which allows objects and phenomena to be analysed in a wider range. Cult-historical complexes, ritual structures specific to neighboring geographical environments and communities are presented.
9. The dissertation also pays attention to the question of the sustainability of the holy places in the ethnocultural tradition of the present, the physical condition of the objects, and innovations.

Publications on the topic of the thesis
1. At the footsteps of the sacred and the eternal / Results of field research in Kyustendil /. - In: Pillars of the folk tradition. XII Conference of Bulgarian Ethnographers, Vratsa, October 5-6, 2007. Vratsa, 2008, 132-157.
2. Votive offerings in Kyustendil - "sacred monuments under the sky" / Results of field research /. - In: Bulletin of the Historical Museum of Kyustendil, vol. XV, Kyustendil, 2008, 199-221.
3. The boundary between the sacred and the dangerous in the consecrations. - In: Slavishki zbornik, 2, Kriva palanka, 2013, 268-284.
4. Semiotic view of the genealogy of the votive system and the associated ritualism. - In: Bulletin of the Historical Museum of Kyustendil, vol. XVIII, Kyustendil, 2018, 231-267.



October 11 - 13, 2007




October 11, 2007 2.00 pm
Renaissance School St. St. Cyril and Methodius

Senior Research Associate Dr. Veselka Katsarova: Structure Elements of Town Network within the Territory of Pautalia during Ancient Epoch according Data of Archeological Researches.

Prof. Dr. HS Hristo Matanov: Town Way of Living in Kyustendil Sandzhak (District) 15th 17th Century.

Prof. Dr. HS Georgi Markov: Bulgaria during Wars for National Liberation and Unification 1912-1919.

Senior Research Associate Dr. HS Vladimir Migev: Some Aspects on the Development of Bulgaria in the Period of 1944-1989


October 11, 4.30 pm
Renaissance school St. St. Cyril and Methodius
Chairperson: Senior Research Associate Dr. Ekaterina Keremidarska
Secretary: Research Associate Veska Spasova

Senior Research Associate Dr. Ekaterina Keremidarska: Custom and Culture of Kyustendil Population after the Liberation till Nowadays

Vera Kerelezova: Ethnographic Materials from Kyustendil Region in the Fund of National History Museum - Sofia

Research Associate Veska Spasova: Consecrated Places in Kyustendil Region Sacred Monuments beneath the Sky. /Results of terrain research works/.

Maria Aleksieva: Charm Treatment in Kyustendil and Dupnitsa Regions.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Atanas Blagov: About Apple Myths and Realities.

Tonya Lyubenova: Kyustendil People in Turgovishte. View on the Life of Kyustendil Settlers and the Activity of Country Committee of Kyustendil People in Turgovishte.



October 11, 4.30 pm
Strimon Hall
Chairperson: Corresponding Member Prof. Henrieta Todorova
Secretary: Philip Mihailov

Corresponding Member Prof. Henrieta Todorova: Paleoclimate and Archeology.

Aneta Bakamska: Again about the Chronology Significance of Red Painting in Early Neolithic Age.

Philip Mihailov: Culture along Struma River Valley in the End of 2nd and in the First Half of 1st Millennium.

Ivanka Staikova, Lidia Staikova-Aleksandrova: Upper Struma River Region during the Iron Age.

Doc. Sergey Kriykin: Grounds of Economic Activity of Southern Thracians (on economic abilities of Thracian tribes during pre-Roman times).


Dr. Zisis Bonias: Die Landhäuser von Thasos.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Ilya Prokopov: Histiaea Tetrobols of Euboia Island in Southwestern Thracia.

Theodoros Kourempanas: Ancient imitations of Hellenistic coins of Thessalonika from Bulgaria.

Spaska Paskova, Ivan Valchev: Thracian Cult Terracotta from the Municipal History Museum Fund in Gotse Delchev.


Second Meeting
October 12, 9.00 am
Strimon Hall
Chairperson: Prof. Margarita Tacheva
Secretary: Doichin Grozdanov

Dr. Ivo Topalilov: Some Notes on CIL VI 37184.

Prof. Peter Dimitrov: Pautalia: Epigraphy and Linguistic.

Prof. Zlatozara Gocheva: Prof. Jordan Ivanov Contribution to Studying the History of Ancient Pautalia on the Ground of Epigraphic Monuments

Prof. Margarita Tacheva: New Findings on the History of Denteletika Strategia (Region).

Research Associate Dr. Zdravko Dimitrov: Dorian Order in an Architectural Complex from the Roman and the Late Ancient Epoch in Pautalia Object Dom na Minyora.

Marina Koleva: Zeus and Hera Statuettes from the Sanctuary near the Village of Kopilovtsi. Iconography, Style and Dating.


Sotir Ivanov: Ancient Lamps from the Place of Kozhuh, Petrich Municipality.

Vasilka Paunova: Roman Bronze Vessel from the Village of Priboy, Radomir District.

Ivo Cholakov: Unpublished Ancient Instruments from the Fund of Regional History Museum Kyustendil.

Research Associate Svetoslava Filipova: Ancient and Late Ancient Coins from the Object Dom na Savetite, 1983.

Slavitsa Taseva: Conservation and Restoration Works in the Area No. 6 in the Late Roman Therms in the Village of Bansko Strumitsa.

Doichin Grozdanov: Grey Terra Sigilata with Plastic Portrait Image of Pautalia".

Research Associate Dr. Svetla Petrova: Early Christian and Basilica Building the Territory of Pautalia.


October 12, 1.30 pm
Strimon Hall
Chairperson: Senior Research Associate Dr. Dochka Aladzhova
Secretary: Research Associate Svetoslava Filipova

Galina Dyankova: About Some Specifics in Ceramic Development of South Bulgaria during Early Middle Ages.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Dochka Aladzhova: Medieval Weights from Bulgaria.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Zhivko Aladzhov: Blesna Fortress Documents and Interpretations.

Ivan Petrinski: 837 1395, Middle Mesta River Fortified
Region: System Elements.

Research Associate Maria Dolmova-Lukoanovska: Golden Age of Bulgarian Culture.

Tosho Spiridonov: Internet Base Archeological Map of Kyustendil Region.



October 11, 4.30 pm
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Prof. Dr. HS Hristo Matanov
Secretary: Svetozar Angelov

Prof. Dr. Aleksandar Atanasovski: Properties of St. Georgi Skopski Monastery in Velbuzhd.

Georgi Kovachev, Tsvetomira Todorova: Thoughts on the Origin and the Fate of a Nobleman Radomir from Document No. 16 in PONEMAJA DIAPHORA by Dimitar Homatiat.

Elena Kostova: Vatoped Acts and St. Mother of God Tspileotisa Monastery in Melnik 13th 14th Century.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Elisaveta Musakova: The Fast Triode from Kyustendil History Museum Collection.

Iveta Rasheva: The Battle near Velbuzhd from 1330 in Stephan Dechanski Passional by Grigorii Tsamblak and in Serbian Genealogies from 15th 17th Century Defeated Victor Mihail Shishman.

Svetozar Angleov: St. Archangel Mihail Church in the Village of Goranovtsi, Kyustendil District.

October 12, 9.00 am
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Senior Research Associate Dr. Shtelian Shterionov
Secretary: Veneta Milusheva

Senior Research Associate Dr. Rumen Kovachev: On Some Registers of Kyustendl Sandzhak (District) from 15th Century.

Lilyana Stankova: Traditions and Innovations in Vladislav Gramatik Manuscripts /kept in Rila Monastery library/.

Kalina Mincheva: Monasteries in Shtip Nahia (smaller administrative district) during 16th Century.

Doc. Dr. Nadya Manolova, Penka Zheleva: A Settlement from Upper Struma River Valley 15th 17th Century.

Prof. Dr. HS Hristo Matanov, Elena Kostova, Maria Polimirova and Kalina Mincheva: Markets in Kyustendil Sandzhak during 16th 18th Century.

Veneta Milusheva: Late Medieval and Renaissance Cult Objects in the Region of Sapareva Banya.


Senior Research Associate Dr. Shtelian Shterionov: Migrations of Greeks Inhabiting Southwestern Bulgaria Territories during 18th 19th Century.

Doc. Dr. Vera Boneva: Kyustendil, Kyustendil Bishopric and Metropolitan Ignatii of Kyustendil on the History of an Imposed Co-existence /1861 - 1877/.

Maria Polimirova: Contacts and Relationships between Confessional Communities of Samokov, Dupnitsa and Kyustendil during the Renaissance Period.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Oleg Vitov: Gold Extraction from Rivers in Kyustendil Region before 1878.

Georgi Georgiev, Anelia Gerenska: Macedonian Refugees in Kyustendil Region 1878-1912.

Georgi Radoslavov: Construction of Railways Pernik Radomir and Its Strategic Significance.


October 12, 2.00 pm
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Prof. Dr. HS Svetlozar Eldarov
Secretary: Research Associate Angel Dzhonev

Research Associate Dr. Stanislava Stoycheva: Condition of Bulgarian Family in Eastern Macedonia according Exarchate Statistic Documentation /end of 19th beginning of 20th Century/.

Doc. Dr. Lilyana Veleva: Kyustendil Region in Economic Periodical Press in the Beginning of 20th century.

Doc. Dr. Stoyan Germanov: Detachments and Rebels in Foreigners View.

Dr. Volodya Milachkov: Albert Soniksen on Liberation Struggle of Macedonian Bulgarians after His Returning in USA.

Todor Dimitrov: Sons of Kyustendil District in the Troops of Macedonian Adrianopol Army of Volunteers.

Research Associate Dr. Aleksander Grebenarov: Parallels between National Revolutionary Struggle of Bulgarians in Macedonia and in Western Bulgarian Suburbs.


October 12, 4.00 pm
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Prof. Dr. HS Dimtar Gotsev
Secretary: Research Associate Angel Dzhonev

Research Associate Angel Dzhonev: To the Question of Revolutionary Organization Bosilegrad.

Chief Assistant Dr. Marko Dimitrov: Role of Export Institute for Economical Development of Bulgaria during 30s of 20th Century.

Doc. Dr. Nikolai Prodanov: Vladimir Karamanov First Historian of Bulgarian Police

Prof. Dr. HS Svetlozar Eldarov: First Seven Years: Efrem Karanfilovs Creative Debut /1938-1944/.

Prof. Dr. HS Trendafil Mitev: The Kyustendil Man Who Established the Bulgarian Social Democratic Union in America.


October 12, 5.30 pm
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Senior Research Associate Dr. HS Vladimir Migev
Secretary: Jordanka Yancheva

Jordanka Yancheva: The Idea about Kyustendil European Resort Lived and in 1945.

Prof. Dr. HS Dimitar Gotsev: 60 Years since the Sofia Trial against IMRO March 1947.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Dimitar Tyulekov: Cross Border Fairs in Bulgarian-Yugoslavian Relationships in the Second Half of 20th Century.

Senior Research Associate Dr. HS Dimitar Migev: Kyustendil in the End of Communist Government /1985-1989/.

Senior Research Associate Dr. Zheko Popov: Freaks Kyustendil People or People Caring about Coming Generations.

Nikolai Ivanov: Macedonian Question in Internet.



October 12, 3.30 pm
Strimon Hall
Regional History Museum
Chairperson: Prof. Dr. Lilyana Mavrodinova
Secretary: Dr. Daniela Chulova-Markova

Prof. Dr. Lilyana Mavrodinova: Asen Vasiliev Inspired Author and Researcher of Bulgarian Antiquity.

Dr. Daniela Chulova-Markova: Unconventional Approach to Urban Environment. A Projection of Monumental Art in External Areas of Kyustendil.

Ilia Nikolov: Medieval Shrine St. Archangels in the Village of Lucky.

Ilona Zaharieva: Genre Variety in the Creative Work of Vladimir Dimitrov the Master.

Chief Assistant Konstantin Markov: Form and Spaces in the Creative Work of Academician Ivan Nenov.

Nina Zlateva, Ilia Nikolov: Ethic and Conservation Tasks. Examination of Velyanova House in the town of Bansko.

Dr. Rumyana Doncheva: Book Illustration by the Artist from Kyustendil Stoyan Venev.



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Invitation for Participation in an International Symposium

Dear Colleague,

Kystendil Municipality, Regional History Museum Academic Jordan Ivanov town of Kyustendil and Museums, Galleries and Arts Department at the Ministry of Culture invite you to take part in the 6th International Symposium Pautalia Velbuzhd - Kyustendil and their Adjoining Territories throughout the Centuries dedicated to 110 anniversary since the establishment of History Museum in the town of Kyustendil (November 3rd, 1897). The Symposium will be held in the town of Kyustendil on 11th, 12th and 13th of October 2007 (Thursday, Friday and Sunday). Its subject theme gives opportunities for studing in the field of regions history throughout its whole historic development. The Symposium will comprise of three scientific sections: Archeology, History and Ethnology.
Official languages: Bulgarian, English, German, French and Russian.
Report themes will be collected till April 30th, 2007 on the museums e-mails: rmuseum.kn@mail.bg rmuseum.kn@abv.bg.
All expenses are on behalf of the participants.




OCTOBER 5 7, 2006

The scientific event is dedicated to the one hundred anniversary of the beginning of systematic archeological researches on the town of Kyustendil and to 1900 years since Pautalia has been given a status of a town with adjoining territories within the Roman Empire.

Symposium opening
1.30 PM - October 5th, 2006
Conference room
Strimon Spa Club
Town of Kyustendil


2.00 PM - October 5th, 2006
Conference Room at Strimon Spa Club

Docent Dr. Stefan Chohadgiev: History of the Prehistoric Researches along the Strouma River Basin.
Research Associate Veselina Vandova Spasova: Main Results of the Researches of Prehistoric Objects in Kyustednil and in Kyustendil Valley during the Last 10 years.
Lidia Staikova Alexandrova: Thracian Mounds from Kyustendil Region

Research Associate Veselka Katsarova: "100 Years of Archeological Researches of the Roman and Late Ancient Town of Pautalia".

Research Associate Rumen Spasov: Archeological Researches on Objects from the Medieval Ages in Kyustendil and in Kyustendil Region 1906-2006.

4.00 4.30 PM - Break


October 5th Chairman: Corresponding Member Prof. Henrieta Todorova
4.30 PM Secretary: Research Associate Veselina Vandova - Spasova
Conference Room
Strimon Spa Club
Town of Kyustendil

1.Docent Dr. Stefan Chohadgiev: Settlement Structure during the Neolithic and the Halkolithic Age along the Strouma River Basin. /The Veliko Turnovo University St. St. Cyril and Methodius/.
2.Corresponding Member Prof. Henrieta Todorova: Topolnitsa the First Neolithic Basement Shrine of Europe. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
3.Dr. Malgozhata Grebska Kulova: About the Final of the Late Halkolithic Age along the Middle Strouma River Valley. /Regional History Museum town of Blagoevgrad/.
4.Tsvetana Popova: Archeo-botanical Researches in Southwestern Bulgaria. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.

4.45 PM Discussion


October 5th Chairman: Senior Research Associate Dr. Ilya Prokopov
4.30 PM Secretary: Research Associate Svetoslava Filipova
Conference Hall
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Senior Research Associate Dr. Ilya Prokopov: Coin Circulation in Southwestern Thracia during 6th 4th Century BC. /Sofia/.
2.Evgeni Paunov: The Coins of the Roman Republic in Southwestern Thracia (about 168 31/27 BC. /Sofia/.
3.Senior Research Associate Dr. Bistra Bozhkova: Architectural Monuments on Pautalian Coins. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
4.Vurbin Vurbanov: Barbarian Invasions along the Strouma River Valley during the Principate Period. /Regional History Museum town of Ruse/.
5.Research Associate Svetoslava Filipova: Coins from Excavations in Pautalia Youth House Object 1969. /Regional History Museum town of Kyustendil/.
6.Senior Research Associate Dr. Dochka Aladgova: About the Trade in Thracia Province 4th 6th Century. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
7.Andrei Tonev: Western European Coins Treasure from the Village of Resilovo. /Regional History Museum town of Kyustendil/.

6.15 PM Discussion


October 6th Chairman: Prof. Dr. Alexandra Milcheva
9.00 AM Secretary: Research Associate Dr. Veselka Katsarova
Conference Room
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Philip Mihailov: Ceramics of the Early Iron Age from the Upper Strouma River Valley. /Regional History Museum town of Pernik/.
2.Senior Research Associate Dr. Anelia Bozhkova: Hellenistic Ceramics from Southwestern Bulgaria. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
3.Dr. Zisis Bonias La Restauration du Theatre de Philippes. /Archeological Museum of Kavala, Greece/.
4.Lidia Staikova Alexandrova: Thracian Mound in the Southeastern Part of Kyustendil. /Regional History Museum town of Kyustendil/.
5.Senior Research Associate Dr. Lazar Ninov: Osteological Analyses of Materials of Thracian Mounds from the Kyustendil Region. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
6.Prof. Dr. Vasilka Gerasimova: About the Places of Some Ancient Monuments in the History of Pautalia. /New Bulgarian University Sofia/.
7.Senior Research Associate Dr. Gergana Kabakchieva: The Trade Relations of Pautalia 1st 4th Century according Data of Ceramics. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
8.Pavlina Ilieva: Ancient Bronze from Pautalia. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
9.Vania Ilinkina: About the Meaning of the Symbols on the Applications of the Kyustendil Chariot (2nd 3rd c.). /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
10.Research Associate Dr. Zdravko Dimitrov: Main Decorative Models on the Antablement Constructions of the Corinth Order from Pautalia during the Late Ancient Epoch. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
11.Assistant Nikolai Sharankov: Publius Antius Teres a Tracarch from Pautalia. /Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski/.

11.45 12.00 AM Discussion


1.00 PM Chairman: Senior Research Associate Dr. Gergana Kabakchieva
Conference Room Secretary: Lidia Staikova - Alexandrova
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Milan Mitovski, Prof. Viktor Lilcic: Ancient Towns and Fortresses in the Municipality of Kriva Palanka - Recent Archeological Research". /University St. St. Cyril and Methodius, Skopje/.
2.Ivanka Staikova: Villa Estates in the Town Territory of Pautalia and Their Owners: /Regional History Museum town of Kyustendil/.
3.Prof. Dr. Zlatozara Gocheva: The Sanctuary of Zeus and Hera in Kopilovtsi Character of the Worshiped Cult. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
4.Prof. Dr. Margarita Tacheva, Ivanka Staikova: The Cult to Sabazius in Pautalia and Its Territory. /Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski/.
5.Vane Sekulov: Gushterova Chuka Necropolis of the Roman Emperor Period Funeral Customs. /town of Strumitsa, Republic of Macedonia/.
6.Venetsia Lyubenova: Bone Artifacts from the Excavations of the Ancient Cult and Production Centre at the Arbanas Quarter (Town of Radomir). /town of Pernik/.
7.Docent Dr. in Philology Peter Dimitrov: Inscriptions on Votive Tablets from Kyustendil Region. /New Bulgarian University/.
8.Dr. Ivo Topalilov: The Names of the Towns in Thracia in the Pretorian Inscriptions. /National Archeological Museum town of Plovdiv/.
9.Slavitsa Taseva: Hypochaust System of the Sanatorium in the Late Roman Therms in the Village of Bansko, Stumitsa. /town of Strumitsa, Republic of Macedonia/.

3.15 3.35 PM Discussion
3.35 3.50 Break


3.50 PM Chairman: Prof. Dr. Margarita Tacheva
Conference Room Secretary: Philip Mihailov
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Prof. Dr. Lyudmila Slokoska, Senior Research Associate Dr. Veselka Katsarova: The Bishop Basilica of Pautalia. /Excavations 1968-1969/. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
2.Stanislava Stoycheva: About the Establishment of the Bishop Cathedral in Pautalia in 4th Century. /Institute in History at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
3.Prof. Dr. Alexandra Milcheva, Vladimir Petkov: Early Christian Monuments in the Region of the Middle Strouma River Valley. Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Archeological Museum town of Sandanski/.
4.Research Associate Dr. Svetla Petrova Basilicas Way of Building, Plan and Architectonic Sculpture between Middle Strouma River and Middle Mesta River Valleys. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
5.Spaska Paskova, Ivan Vulchev: Early Christianity in Nikopolis Ad Nestum according Written, Epigraphic and Archeological Data. /History Museum town of Gotse Delchev/.
6.Vasilka Paunova: Early Christian Church in the Foot of the Krakra Hill in Pernik. /Regional History Museum town of Pernik/.

5.35 5.50 PM Discussion
5.50 6.10 Break

7.Senior Research Associate Dr. George Nehrizov, Albena Todorova: Void Tomb of Late Ancient Epoch in the village of Staro Selo, Pernik Region. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
8.Biliana Ivanova: Building Techniques and Materials of the Late Ancient Fortress on the Hisarlaka Hill, town of Kyustendil. /New Bulgarian University Sofia/.
9.Dr. Nikolai Markov: Worshipped Ring of 6th Century from the Southwestern Bulgaria. /National History Museum Sofia/.
10.Senior Research Associate Dr. Oleg Vitov: Geological and Historical Data about the Gold Mining in the Kyustendil Region. /Central Laboratory in Mineralogy and Crystallography at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
11.Dr. Zdravko Tsintsov, Krum Radoikov: The Ancient Mining of Spilling Gold from the Region of the Village of Gorno Uino. /Central Laboratory in Mineralogy and Crystallography at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.

At 7.25 PM Discussion

Section Middle Ages


October 6th
9.00 AM Chairman: Senior Research Associate Dr. Kosta Hadgiev
Strimon Hall Secretary: Research Associate Rumen Spasov
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Research Associate Dr. Metodi Daskalov, Katia Trendafilova: New Metal Ornaments and Belongings to the 5th 7th Century Clothes in the Fund of the Pernik History Museum. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
2.Todor Marvakov: Early Byzantine Buckle from the Necropolis at the Village of Koprivlen, Gotse Delchev Region. /History Museum town of Nesebar/.
3.Senior Research Associate Dr. Zhivko Aladgov: The Early Bulgarian Presence in Thracia. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
4.Research Associate Dr. Stela Doncheva: Cult and Ritual in the Medieval Velbuzhd. /Regional History Museum town of Shumen/.
5.Prof. Liliana Mavrodinova: More about the Medieval Church in Kolusha. /Sofia/.
6.Architect Hristina Staneva: Restoration and Exposition of the Medieval Church St. George town of Kyustendil. /Sofia/.
7.Ablena Mazakova: Problems of the Research, Restoration and Exposition of the Medieval Frescoes in the St. George Church, town of Kyustendil. /National Institution for Monuments of Culture - Sofia/.

10.45 11.05 AM Discussion
11.05 11.20 AM Break

8.Senior Research Associate Dr. Lazar Ninov: Osteoarcheological Data about the Animals from the Hisarlaka Hill, town of Kyustendil. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
9.Elena Kostova: Melnik in the System of the Byzantine Provincial Administration. /Center for Slavic and Byzantine Studies Academician Ivan Duitchev, Sofia/.
10.Doichin Grozdanov: Medieval Churches and Tombs from the Southern Bulgaria. /Regional History Museum town of Kyustendil/.
11.Ivan Petrinski: The Vrabets Fortress. To the Question on the Origin of the Bulgarian Medieval Towns in 13th 14th Century. /National History Museum Sofia/.
12.Research Associate Maria Dolmova Lukanovska: On Some Specific Features in the Development of the Craftsmanship and the Metallurgy in Bulgaria in 13th 14 Century. /Archeological Institution with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Branch Office Veliko Turnovo/.
13.Stoyan Avdev: The Role of the Medieval Ore Mining to the Economical, Cultural and Social Life of the Kyustendil - Kratovo Region.
14.Slavianka Nikolova, Sergei Ustinov: Excavations on Monastery Complex in the Rila Monastery Surroundings. /History Museum town of Dupnitsa/.

1.05 1.30 PM Discussion
1.30 2.30 PM Break


October 6th
2.30 PM Chairman: Research Associate Dr. Metodi Daskalov
Strimon Hall Secretary: Doichin Grozdanov
Regional History Museum
Town of Kyustendil

1.Senior Research Associate Dr. Kosta Hadgiev: Epigraphic Kiril Inscriptions from the Kyustendil District. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
2.Prof. Boriana Velcheva Boyadgieva: The Kyustendil Manuscript Collection /Sofia/.
3.Elisaveta Musakova: The Kyustendil Election Gospel. /National Library St. St. Cyril and Methodius.
4.Svetlozar Angelov: Wall Pictures in the Southwestern Bulgarian Lands in 16th Century. /Center for Slavic and Byzantine Studies Academician Ivan Duitchev, Sofia/.
5.Marlena Krusteva: Cave Monastery Problems and Examinations. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
6.Kalina Mincheva: Lesnovo Monastery in 16th Century. /Center for Slavic and Byzantine Studies Academician Ivan Duitchev, Sofia/.
7.Senior Research Associate Elena Genova, Penka Zheleva: About Unknown Cross with Miniature Carving from Pernik Museum. /Science of Art Institute at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.

4.30 4.50 PM Discussion
4.50 5.15 PM Break

8.Senior Research Associate Dr. Katerina Venedikova: Turkish Monuments from Kyustendil. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
9.Alexander Kitanov: Dupnitsa Nahiai the Second Half of 16th Century. /History Museum town of Dupnitsa/.
10.Sotir Ivanov: Ceramics Oven of the Renaissance Period. /History Museum town of Petrich/.
11.Bisera Tomova: Jewry from Kyustendil and Kyustendil Region. /Archeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences/.
12.Lyudmil Zhekov Lozanov: Church Institutions in Southeastern Europe of 9th 20th Century. /Sofia/.

At 6.30 PM Discussion


Regional Historical Museum Academician Yordan Ivanov, Kyustendil - 2004-2006