One of the symbols of Sofia, Tsar Liberator monument represents the Russian emperor Alexander II riding a horse, holding in his right hand the manifesto for declaration of war on the Ottoman empire. That war, that took part in 1877-1878, was the cornerstone of Bulgaria's history - the peace treaty signed on 3 March 1878 marked the establishment of modern Bulgarian state. Relief of the peace treaty is visible on the eastern side of the horseman statue. The monument was raised in 1907 after international competition won by the Italian Arnoldo Zocchi – it was among his best works along with monument of Garibaldi in Bologne, of Columbus in Buenos Aires and many more.
Originally, this Russian emperor bears the nickname "Liberator" because he has relieved the Russian peasants of their feudal debts, but in modern Bulgaria he bears such a nickname as the tsar, who liberated the country from the yoke of the Ottoman empire. The central boulevard of Sofia is also named "Tsar Osvoboditel" (Tsar Liberator).