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Razgrad is a city in northeastern Bulgaria, administrative and industrial centre of the homonymous Razgrad Province. The suffix "grad" means city in Bulgarian and in many Slavic languages. The origin and the meaning of the first part "raz" is obscure. During the Second Bulgarian Empire, around the present city there was a settlement, mentioned by the names of Hrasgrad, Hrazgrad and Hrizgrad. The first hypothesis is, that these names come from the name of theProto-Bulgarian and Slavic god Hors. This deity is of Proto-Iranian (Persian) descent and means sun and sun light. The Bulgarian and the Slavic word for city "grad" is also sometimes described a word of Iranian origin, meaning "large settlement". It is suggested that the mentioned location Igrizinus in the medieval maps of the Arab geographer Al Idrisi (1100 - 1165) in the surroundings of Razgrad was the city itself. In his maps the names of the settlements are stronglyArabized. It may be an Arabized form of the Latin name Abrittus. Another theory suggests that it is an Arabized form of the Medieval Hrizgrad and Hrazgrad, because the transliteration kept the syllable iz. In the following periods Hrazgrad(Keresdavicha within Ivan Shishman rule) was mentioned with the names: Hezargad, Herazgrad, Hasgrad,Chetehezar, Krasgrad, Arangrad, Azargrad, Hrazgrad, Krozgrad, Hirazgrad. The word "hezar" is of Iranian (Persian) origin and means thousand (thousand tents of the army). It is possible, that the word "hezar" derives from "Hisar", which is an Arabic word for fortress. The name Hezargrad may be also the turkified form of the medieval BulgarianHrazgrad (Hrizgrad). Razgrad was built upon the ruins of the Ancient Roman town of Abritus on the banks of the Beli Lom river. Abritus was built on a Thracian settlement of the 4th-5th century BC with unknown name. Several bronze coins of the Thracian kingSeuthes III (330-300 BC) and pottery were found, as well as artifacts from other rulers and a sacrificial altar ofHercules. Some of Razgrads landmarks include the Varosha architectural complex from the 19th century, the ethnographic museum and several other museums, the characteristic clock tower in the centre built in 1864, the St Nicholas the Miracle Worker Church from 1860, the Momina cheshma sculpture, the Mausoleum Ossuary of the Liberators and the Ibrahim Pasha Mosque from 1530. The mosque is said to be one of the largest in the Balkans (excluding Turkey). In 251, the town was the site of the Battle of Abrittus, during which the Goths defeated a Roman army under the emperors Trajan Decius and Herennius Etruscus. The battle is notable for being the first occasion of a Roman emperor being killed in a battle with barbarians. Razgrad Peak on Greenwich Island in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica is named after Razgrad.

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