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article imageArcheologists in Bulgaria say they've found Europe's oldest town

By Leigh Goessl     Nov 1, 2012 in World
Provadia - Archaeologists in Bulgaria say they have uncovered Europe's oldest town. The remains of the prehistoric town are believed to date between 4700 and 4200 BC.
According to BBC News, the archaeologists believe they have discovered Europe's oldest prehistoric town; dating back 6,000 years through carbon analysis. If the town is this old, it is older than ancient Greek civilization.
To date, archaeologists at the Bulgarian site have uncovered the remnants of homes, a town wall, burial ground and other structures. A settlement of several two-story homes were found with the wall surrounding the dwellings. The Associated Press reported the walls are three meters (10 feet) high and two meters (6.5 feet) thick.
"We are not talking about a town like the Greek city-states, ancient Rome or medieval settlements, but about what archaeologists agree constituted a town in the fifth millennium BC," Vasil Nikolov, a researcher with Bulgaria's National Institute of Archaeology, told the AFP news agency (courtesy BBC News).
"New samples of the excavations have been sent to the University of Cologne, Germany, for further evaluation," Nikolov said.
Excavation of the site in Bulgaria began in 2005, but it wasn't until recently the researchers were able to piece together enough information to support theories. The speculation is that the citizens of this ancient town were in the salt business and used a nearby spring to boil water and create salt bricks, then traded the salt for other commodities.
"Its discovery in north-east Bulgaria may explain the huge gold hoard found nearby 40 years ago.
Archaeologists believe that the town was home to some 350 people," said a more detailed BBC report. This refers to a treasure found about 35 kilometers (21 miles) away that is believed to contain the oldest gold pieces in the world.
The dig site is near the Bulgarian town of Provadia.
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