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Northwest Bulgaria > Loukovit > History

History of Loukovit

There are traces of Thracian, Roman, Byzantine and Old Bulgarian periods. Many rings, fibulas, earrings, ceramic articles and objects and the famous Loukovit silver treasure dating back to the 4th century BC (exhibited in the museum collection of the Community Cultural Centre) were found in the numerous Thracian mounds scattered in the area. A treasure of Roman coins was also found. Byzantine coins dating back to the 12th century as well as coins from the reign of Tsar Ivan Alexander (1330-1371) were found at the Gradishte Hill. The settlement was first mentioned in a document dating back to 1479 under the name of Gorni Loukovit. At the end of 17th century the Turkish troops, defeated near Vienna and Belgrade ruined it in their retreat and forced a lot of the inhabitants to convert to Islam.

The nearby Karlukovski Monastery, where Sofronii Vrachanski found shelter and worked for the benefit of his people, promoted Bulgarian spirit. The national defenders Angel Voivoda and Valchan Voivoda were active in the region. The Apostle Vassil Levski founded a revolutionary committee in Gorni Loukovit. The Revival upsurge found its reflection in the construction of the first school in 1849.

After 18th century Loukovit was the largest village in the Pre-Balkan region and was famous with its 14 water mills on the river Panega. The Orthodox Bulgarians mainly bred cattle, while the Bulgarian Mohammedan grew vegetables. After the Liberation in 1878 the village was proclaimed a town under the name of Loukovit. The crafts declined as elsewhere in Bulgaria after the markets in the Ottoman Empire were lost. The town made some progress in its development after the railway line Cherven Bryag - Zlatna Panega was constructed.

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