The late ancient tomb of Silistra

Date of Submission: 01/10/1984
Criteria: (i)(iii)
Category: Cultural
Submitted by:
Commission Nationale de la R.P. de Bulgarie pour l'Unesco
Coordinates: Town of Silistra, in the region of the ancient necropolis.
Ref.: 48


The tomb is located in the town of Silistra, in the region of the ancient necropolis. It has one chamber, built rectangularly, a semi-cylindrical vault and its entrance is from the East. The walls are made of stone and the vault - of bricks. Its measurements are: 3.30/2.60m/2.30 m. The walls on the inside are entirely covered with murals in the al fresco technique with details in impera al seco. Over a low plinth there runs the basic frieze of 11 panels with human figures on them, whereas over them there are painted trimmer joists at the base of the vault, and compositions are painted in the lunettes and on the vault. The husband and wife buried here are painted on the central panel. A procession of servants with garments and gifts in their hands is depicted on both sides of the couple. In addition, the decoration features peacocks, candle-sticks and birds Hunting scenes, birds, animals and vegetal motifs are painted on the vault. The style shows ancient elements, but it also reflects traits of art in the 4th century to which the tomb is dated. The Silistra Tomb is a rare, wholly preserved monument of late ancient painting. It shows the characteristics of the provincial style It is a unique example of art and life of that particular period in the Thracian lands.