The “Earth and Man” is a national museum of mineralogy, located in Sofia. It is founded in 1986 and the first exhibition for visitors in opened on the 19 of June, 1987. In the museum are exhibited over 20 000 exhibits, organized into six funds – Giant crystals, minerals of the Earth, minerals of Bulgaria, minerals resources of the Earth, mineral resources of Bulgaria and Precious and Ornamental stones. Other exhibitions are dedicated to industrial minerals, raw material deposits in Bulgaria and new materials. The museum has library, scientific laboratories, exhibition hall, conference hall and video hall.
The museum has rich and well organized funds. As of January, 2015 there are total of 29 342 items, while the total number could reach 100 000. All materials are systemized into 7 sections. The section “Minerals resources of Bulgaria” keep samples of about 400 deposits and ore bodies. The most attractive part of the museum is the section “Giant crystals” - one of the two major exhibitions of its kind in the world. “Minerals of the Earth” is the richest systemized collection in the Balkans, including 7600 samples from 1569 mineral species, while the total number of species known to the science is 4200. “Minerals of Bulgaria” is the most complete collection of Bulgarian minerals and contains 4191 samples. “Precious and Ornamental stones” has 2668 samples from all kinds of precious gems.
The museum is a temple of donation, a creation of generosity and patriotism. Created entirely by donations from Bulgarian and foreign individuals as well as and legal entities. The whole realization of the museum, including restoration and adaptation of the building was carried out with funds by the National Endowment Fund "13 Centuries Bulgaria". As of December, 2014, a total of 77% of the samples of the museum fund have been acquired by donations from 912 Bulgarian and foreign donators.
Translation Yordan Georgiev - trainee