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  Nicopolis ad Istrum was founded by Emperor Trajan in AD 106 to commemorate his victory over the Dacians to the north of the Danube. It is located near the present-day village of Nikyup whose name originates from the similarly named Roman town. The first archaeological excavations in Nicopolis ad Istrum were carried out in 1900 by the French archaeologist Georges Seure. The regular excavations began in 1975, while from 1985 onwards the town has been explored by a Bulgarian–British archaeological team. One of the most fascinating objects discovered by chance near Nicopolis ad Istrum was a bronze head of a statue of Emperor Gordian III, nowadays exhibited in the National Archaeological Museum in Sofia. Recently, America for Bulgaria Foundation provided a grant for the preservation of the inscriptions discovered