The Sveshtarska Grobnitsa, or Sveshtari Tomb, is the prime showstopper of Sboryanovo Archaeological Reserve. Discovered in 1982 in one of the biggest mounds of the eastern necropolis – Ginina Mogila – it is without a match throughout the Thracian world. Its three rooms have unusual barrel-vaulted ceilings. The burial chamber is decorated with a fresco of an imposing woman crowning a rider with a wreath. Sculptures of 10 caryatids line the walls of the room. 

Sculpted of limestone, the women have disproportionate bodies, intricately carved dresses and sturdy faces with wide-opened eyes, which captivate the visitor in the claustrophobically narrow chamber. 

Sveshtari Tomb

The actual tomb is protected by a purpose-built building with controlled humidity and temperature

Historians believe that the Sveshtari caryatids represent the all-mighty Great Goddess of the Thracians. She is also the tall woman in the fresco, depicted at the moment she brings immortality to the deified owner of the tomb. Relying on circumstantial evidence, some scientists go as far as to claim to know who the deceased was: King Dromichaetes, who ruled over the Getae between the end of the 4th and the first decade of the 3rd Century BC. 

In 1985 UNESCO listed the Sveshtari Tomb as a World Heritage Monument. Due to preservation issues, visiting time in the tomb is strictly limited. 

Sveshtari Tomb

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