Introduction of Veliko turnovo
City and capital of Veliko Tarnovo province, 55 mi ESE of Pleven, on almost vertical slopes over the Yantra River, N Bulgaria. Settled in prehistoric times, it was the site of a Roman fortress and was the capital of the Second Bulgarian Empire from 1185 to 1396.
During this period it was a splendidly embellished town but was sacked and burned by the Turks in 1393. It remained part of the Ottoman Empire until 1877, during which time it was a cultural and educational center. In 1879 the first Bulgarian constitution was drafted and passed here, and the independent kingdom of Bulgaria was proclaimed here in 1908.
The city was destroyed in 1911 by an earthquake but was restored in the 1970s as a national monument. In 1965 the city officially changed its name from Tirnova.