Bulgaria - Veliko Tarnovo
Konstantsaliev’s house - museum
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The Konstantsaliev’s house is an example of the unique style of architecture in the village of Arbanasi. The typical Arbanassi house is quite unique in terms of its architecture and construction principles – a house-fortress surrounded by high stone walls. It has been defined as a Bulgarian boyar (aristocratic) house.
An outstanding example in this respect is the Konstantsaliev House. It is in the center of the village, near to Kokonska Cheshma (Dames’ Fountain). Given that the house has been built along the extension of the street, it stands out impressively with its two-storey stone facade without any bay-windows or other elements. Both the exterior and interior designs of the structure suggest the affluence of its inhabitants and their infallible flair for beautiful and noble things. The house was built in the end of XVII c. and was reconstructed several times.. Originally it was owned by the Tafrili family, and was later bought by the wealthy merchant Atanas Konstantsaliata.
It is an ethnographic museum in nowadays. The diverse museum exhibition of the Konstantsaliev's house represents the way of life of the wealthy merchants in the period of the zenith of the village in XVI-XVII c. House takes visitors on a fascinating trip exploring the lifestyles, habits and ways of the Arbanassi residents during XIX c.
NATIONAL ARCHITECTURAL RESERVE ARBANASI (DEMO)
The earliest information about the existing of Arbanasi is from the end of XV c. In this time it was owned by high-ranking dignitaries in the Ottoman Empire. The legalized privileges made Arbanasi a very attractive place for living. There were citizens with Albanian, Bulgarian, Greek and Romanian origin. There were 1000 houses in XVII c, when the time of economic boom of the village was. The architecture of the buildings was very characteristic – the houses were like fortresses, surrounded by high stone walls as the Konstantsalieva’s House, the Kandilarova’s House etc. The church had a principal role in the life of the village. Since the middle of XVI c. to the end of XVIII c. 7 churches were built and decorated.
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