Bulgaria’s capital celebrates St. Sofia Day – the date when the Orthodox world pays homage to the Holy Martyrs Sofia and her three daughters Faith, Hope and Love. In 1992 Sofia municipal council selected this date for Sofia’s Day at the proposal of the then mayor.
Between 1979 and 1992 Sofia’s Day was marked on April 3, the day when Sofia was pronounced Bulgaria’s capital back in 1879.
However, the city got it’s current name somewhere around the 14th century because of the church Hagya Sophia (from the Greek: Ἁγία Σοφία, “Holy Wisdom”). The church is part of the Free Sofia Tour. According to the priest
In the theology of the Eastern Orthodox Church, Holy Wisdom is understood as the Divine Logos who became incarnate as Jesus Christ. Especially for FST father Angel from the church underlined that Sofia is named after Jesus Christ which makes it a divine city and people should be proud of that. Of course, he underlined that we should also commemorate the sacrifice of the three girls and their mother.
The city of Sofia had four names before – Serdica (after the Thracian tribe called “Serdi”), Ulpia Serdica (after the Roman emperor Marcus Ulpius Trajanus), Sredec (“in the middle”), Triadica (Byzantine Empire, probably after the “Holy Trinity”).
Currently there are excavations going on at the underground levels of the church Hagya Sophia. After the complex is completed, it is going to be one of the biggest underground museum in Europe, the director of the National Museum of History promised. There are a couple of layers of previous cult building down there as well as dozens of tombs from an ancient necropolis.
P.S. Nowadays the name is pronounced Sófia, not Sofía (accent on the first syllable).