The Monument to the Unknown Soldier was unveiled in 1981 on the 1300th anniversary of the Bulgarian state. It is a symbol of national gratitude to those who died for the freedom of Bulgaria over its centuries-old history. The monument is located on the historical Alexander Nevsky Square, by the southern wall of the Saint Sofia Church that gave its name to the Bulgarian capital.
The monument was designed by architect Nikola Nikolov and sculptor Lyuben Dimitrov as a sarcophagus in which holy soil from all across the country with the remains of known and unknown heroes who sacrificed their lives for Bulgaria’s freedom is stored. At the foot of the sarcophagus there is an eternal flame that was delivered from the Shipka Pass.
There is also a statue of a lion (the symbol of Bulgarian statehood) near the composition. It is the only remaining part of a 1936 monument that was never finished.