The Principality of Bulgaria was a self-governing entity created after the end of the Russo-Turkish War in 1878. It was an autonomous principality stretching between the Danube and the Stara Planina range, with its seat at the old Bulgarian capital of Veliko Turnovo. This state was to be under nominal Ottoman sovereignty but was to be ruled by a prince elected by a congress of Bulgarian notables and approved by the Powers.
The Bulgarian National Bank was established on 25 January 1879 and in the next year the Second Ordinary National Assembly voted the Minting Rights Act, granting the state exclusive rights to put into circulation coins. The Act also established the lev as the national currency, dividing it into a hundred stotinki. The very next year the first Bulgarian coins were minted in England: two, five and ten stotinki in copper. Silver one and two levs coins were minted in Russia in 1882, and the first gold coins (10, 20, and 100 levs) came in 1894. The Coinage of the Principality Act of 1897 declared the golden lev as the unit of currency.
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