The Tomb of Struma

It is a medieval tomb located 3 kilometres to the west of Strumica, near the village of Banica. The tomb looks like a mausoleum and is composed of 9 layers of carved freestone. It is 230 cm high, 240 cm wide and 400 cm long.

There are three legends among people that refer to the origin of the tomb:

1. That the tomb belonged to Struma, sister of the King Marko.
2. That the tomb belonged to Perseus, a Prince, relative of Alexander the Great
3. That the tomb belonged to Struma, daughter of a commander of the Slavs in the area of Strumica.

This legend says that the town was surrounded by strong Byzantine armed forces but they did not succeed in conquering the town. Then the treason of Struma happened because she was in love with the Byzantine military commander and thus revealed the secret of the unconquerable Czar’s Towers to him. The secret was that the horse’s shoes should be nailed reversely, and by that, the horse climbed the steep rocks aroud the fortress easily. The Byzantines conquered the fortress and the father cursed his daughter: when she dies, the earth will pitch her out nine times.

The nine layers of carved freestone, according to the legend, are related to the nine times of pitching out and burying of Struma. However, whether one of these legends is true or the tomb has a history of its own, is not yet known.

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