|• Total||350 (est.)|
Solnitsata (Bulgarian: Солницата, "The Saltworks") was an ancient town located in present-day Bulgaria, near the modern city of Provadia. Believed by Bulgarian archaeologists to be the oldest town in Europe, Solnitsata was the site of a salt production facility approximately six millennia ago; it flourished ca 4700-4200 BC. The settlement was walled to protect the salt, a crucial commodity in antiquity. Although its population has been estimated at only 350, archaeologist Vassil Nikolov argues that it meets established criteria as a prehistoric city.
Salt production drove Solnitsata's economy, and the town is believed to have supplied salt throughout the Balkans. A large collection of gold objects nearby has led archaeologists to speculate that this trade resulted in considerable wealth for the town's residents.
- Maugh II, Thomas H. (1 November 2012). "Bulgarians find oldest European town, a salt production center". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
- Survival of Information: the earliest prehistoric town in Europe
- Squires, Nick (31 October 2012). "Archaeologists find Europe's most prehistoric town". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
- Nikolov, Vassil. "Salt, early complex society, urbanization: Provadia-Solnitsata (5500-4200 BC) (Abstract)" (PDF). Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
- Ranguelov, Boyko; Nikolov, Vassil (2010). Ancient earthquake data extraction by archeological findings. EGU General Assembly 2010. 2–7 May 2010. Vienna, Austria. Bibcode:2010EGUGA..12.6393R.
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