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The Bishop's Basilica of Philippopolis, Plovdiv

The Bishop's Basilica of Philippopolis, Plovdiv

The Bishop's Basilica of Philippopolis, also known as the Great Basilica, is one of the most impressive early Christian churches in Southeastern Europe. It is located in the city of Plovdiv and was discovered during archaeological excavations in the 1980s.
Built in the 4th century, during the reign of Emperor Constantine the Great, the basilica was the center of Christianity in the region. The building covers an area of over 3,600 square meters and is notable for its remarkable mosaic floors, which include geometric patterns, depictions of plants, birds and exotic animals. The central nave of the basilica is covered with a large medallion depicting Jesus Christ seated on a throne.
The basilica has undergone several renovations and expansions over the centuries, including the construction of a new building in the 5th century. It was abandoned and destroyed during barbarian invasions in the 7th century. However, its magnificent mosaics have been preserved under layers of earth and building materials and are now on display in a purpose-built gallery.
In 2019, the Bishop's Basilica of Philippopolis was officially opened to the public after a complete restoration and conservation. Today it is a museum and cultural center, showcasing the rich history of the region and offering a glimpse into life in Philippopolis in late antiquity. The basilica also includes interactive exhibits and audio-visual presentations that provide a fascinating experience for visitors.

Text: Nedyalko Mihalev | Photos: Nedyalko Mihalev | Location: N: 42.143974, E: 24.752434
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"The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they are."
Samuel Johnson