Sofia is a city of statues and monuments. It is difficult to find a square or intersection that does not have a monument, obelisk or statue. Many of them reflect the gratitude of the Bulgarians to the Russian soldiers who contributed to the expulsion of the Turks; their own heroes of the Liberation have not been forgotten either. In the center of Sofia, on a round square, there is a monument to the Bulgarian national hero, one of the leaders of the Bulgarian national liberation movement, revolutionary Vasil Levsky (1837-1873).
Monument to the Apostle of Freedom Vasil Levsky. Story
The obelisk, 13 meters high, was designed by the first city architect of Sofia, Czech Anthony Kolar. The obelisk was carved out of gray Boyana granite by the Italian master Abraham Peruchetti, and the stone medallion with embossing and a bas-relief of the hero is the work of the Viennese sculpture Rudolf von Weiner. The lamps and iron chains were created by the craftsmen of the Viennese company “Rudolf Philip Wagner”.
National Hero of Bulgaria Vasil Levsky (Vasil Ivanov Kunchev), known as the Apostle of Freedom, is the ideologist and organizer of the Bulgarian National Revolution. The April Uprising and the ensuing Russian-Turkish War (1877-1878) led to the liberation of Bulgaria from the Ottoman yoke. Until 1862, Vasil Levsky was a monk, but he embarked on the path of the struggle for the liberation of Bulgaria. His nickname “Levski”, he received after the battle with the Turkish garrison in Belgrade for lion’s courage.
In 1872, Vasil Levski was arrested by the Turkish police in Sofia. By the verdict of the Ottoman court in 1873, he was executed outside the city limits of Sofia (now this is a place in the center of modern Sofia). The decision to erect a monument at the place of his execution was made immediately after the liberation of Sofia from Turkish troops. But for various reasons (I did not like the initial project of the monument, due to lack of funds, long construction), the monument was opened only in October 1895. Memorable inscriptions are carved from different sides of the monument.
Attention is drawn to the date engraved on the monument – 1869.
This year Vasil Levsky addressed an appeal to the Bulgarian people. Vasil Levsky received 150 monuments, 19 of which are not in Bulgaria (Paris, London, Chisinau, Valencia, Serbia, etc.). A city, 6 villages, city quarters, streets and boulevards, schools, enterprises are named after Vasil Levsky. There are always flowers at the foot of the monument as a token of gratitude to the hero-liberator.