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National Museum of Military History exhibits historic armaments

Date: 28.01.2006

Five wars have been waged in the modern history of Bulgaria within the last 60 years only. Samples of armaments used in the Bulgarian army and its enemies in each of them are carefully kept in the National Museum of Military History. All of them are displayed at the new exhibition staged in the Museum, which opened doors recently.

Its title is "The Arms of the Third Bulgarian State. Despite the fact that the exposition occupies two floors, the exhibits are just a minor part of the rich Museum's funds. Over 40,000 pieces of personal arms are kept in them ranging from Thracian swords to a classical Kalashnikov automatic gun, 1947 model.

The age bracket of visitors who marvel for hours at the display cases with arms is from teenagers to octogenarians. The exhibits include practically all kinds of light firearms manufactured across the world from the middle of the 19th century to the present days. Their number exceeds 400.

Apart from arms, the Museum keeps a large collection of personal belongings of Prince Alexander Battenberg, the first Bulgarian monarch enthroned after the liberation of Bulgaria from the Ottoman yoke (1878.)

In 1937, his widow, duchess Von Hartenau, in execution of her husbands last will, donated to the State four train carriages full of Prince's private property - furniture, paintings, orders and medals, books and documents. Certainly, numerous weapons he received as awards on various occasions are also among them. Visitors can see, for instance, a rich collection of parade sabers and swords, as well as a pair of old dueling pistols.

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