Why Vassil Bojkov Turned Down $300 000 000 Offer For His Thracian Collection

The Golden Fleece Exposition Vassil Bojkov

Bulgarian mogul Vassil Bojkov’s historical collection has been on display to the public at several exhibitions in Bulgaria as well as abroad. Interest around the collection has gathered fast, and understandably so. What came as a surprise to many, is the fact that the wealthy Bulgarian refused a $300, 000 000 offer submitted by an Arabian sheikh to buy this fascinating collection of Thracian treasures. While it can’t have been an easy decision to make (even for the richest man in Bulgaria!), it was not a decision motivated by financial gain. Bojkov chose not to sell the collection because some things are more important than money – these artefacts are a crucial part of Bulgarian culture and history. No value can be placed on what these items mean for the Bulgarian people.

What makes the collection so unique, is that it offers a rare insight into a little-known ancient civilization. It has helped to raise awareness around Thracian history, despite the lack of written records. In this regard, then, $300 000 000 seems an insignifcant amount when compared to the culture, history, art, civilization, craftsmanship and politics all absorbed into these artefacts. Besides, none of these intriguing pieces are ever going to lose their value anyway. They are all priceless because they carry the weight of the past of a great nation such as the Thracian people. Among the oldest articles in the collection are items that date back as far back as the 15th century B.C. A large number of them were discovered in Bulgarian Thracian tombs across time.

As the holder and protector of the collection, Bojkov has managed to preserve the historical and aesthetic significance that illustrates the national past. The Thracian treasures are not only impressive to look at – they are rich in myths and legends that tell revealing stories which would have otherwise been lost in time. Equally as fascinating, is that the items reflect how Thracian people evolved and developed over centuries. Different pieces which can be traced to different eras, depict changes that occured in terms of shifts in power, politics, economic tendencies and fashion at that time.

The ornaments serve as an example of what the Thracian people were capable of doing, their craftsmanship rituals, and beliefs. The precise illustrations etched into some of the pieces are so elegant and admirable. Social, cultural, and historical contexts are deeply rooted in the material used for these silver, metal, and gold artefacts. The type of materials used for craftsmanship in a certain era can reveal a lot to historians about the capabilities and progression of different societies.

Given its significance within the study of ancient history, no amount of money could replace all the hidden meanings and values that Vassil Bojkov’s Thracian collection contains. There are few other collectable items that carry the same level of importance, beauty and irreplaceability. They are symbolic of the past, of principles, and of nuanced ideologies that existed centuries ago.

Bojkov has been keen to display these items to the public, so that as many people as possible get the chance to experience this unique historical insight. The Vassil Bojkov Collection has been open for viewing at exhibitions in several locations across Bulgaria, as well as other countries around the world. It is famous for the many alluring examples of metal, silver, and golden artefacts crafted so many years ago, which are still able to mesmerize and impress a modern day audience.

By not selling these treasures for a price as big as that of $300 000 000, Bojkov has proved that he cherishes the past of his own nation. He wants to give Bulgarians the opportunity to be as proud of their heritage as he is, through offering glimpse into a civilization with no written language but with spectacular lasting records in the form of all of these skillfully crafted treasures left behind.

About the author Iliyana Ivanova is a journalist and historian born in Bulgaria but currently based in London, UK. She has studied at Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski and graduated from the Faculty of History with a BA in Archeology and MA in Ancient History and Thracian Studies. Throughout the years, Iliyana has organized various cultural and historical events back in Bulgaria with the idea to reveal little-known-information about the ancient world of Thrace. She continues her practice in the UK as well with the main goal to promote the history and ancient treasures of Bulgaria. Currently, her main focus is one of the most fascinating private collections of Thracian artefacts – that of the philanthropist and collector Vasil Bojkov. Her personal blog contains articles about the pieces owned by Vasil Bojkov, their meaning to her country and the world, his personal life, and all the deeds, charity events, and exhibitions initiated by him.

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