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#Exhibit of the Month

From the early days of Christianity, the cross meant not only an instrument of torture, but also a symbol of victory over death, a symbol of salvation. The object is made of silver, having the shape of a Byzantine cross with trapezoidal edges of the arms. The side arms and the one at the bottom seem to be turned inside a vessel (chalice (?)) with the trapezoidal "foot". The arms of the cross and of the "chalice" were ended with a decorative element in the shape of a sphere (drop). The cross has a decoration in relief, executed in the technique of filigree and granulation, consisting of drops, double and triple cords, circles with a drop in the center, and trefoils (?). In the center of the cross, at the intersection of the arms, there is a round mount with a cord-like edge, in which the pomegranate fruit is located. However, the main decorative element is the images of four peacocks turned to the right, with a snake in the beak, arranged on all the arms of the cross. The image of the peacocks is rendered in an artistic way, and their tails are stylized in the shape of a palmette.
The peacock, originated from India, due to its luxurious fan-shaped tail, was considered a symbol of the Sun. In ancient Greece, they were considered the sacred birds of the goddess Hera, and in ancient Rome they were considered the sacred birds of the goddess Juno. In Kievan Rus', the peacock (the Firebird) also symbolized the Sun. In the West, the peacock was considered a snake killer, and the iridescent colors of its tail were attributed to its ability to turn snake venom into solar substance. Since snakes in Iranian symbolism were considered enemies of the sun, it was believed that the peacock killed snakes, in order to create "eyes" from their saliva, iridescent with a bronze-green and gold-blue color on the feathers of its tail. Due to the bright splendor of the male peacock's tail, it has been compared with immortal gods and, therefore, with immortality. Peacocks are known as an emblem of greatness, royal authority, spiritual superiority, ideal creation.

In the early period of Christianity, the peacock was a symbol of love, resurrection, immortality, beauty, eternity of the soul, the all-seeing eye of the Church, and the peacock feather was the emblem of Saint Barbara. The image of peacocks with snakes in their beaks on the cross is not at all accidental; it symbolizes the victory of Christ over evil.

On the back side of the cross, traces of fixing are preserved, probably of a pin (missing), so the object served as a brooch (fibula), which was probably attached to the fabric. The piece is presumably dated back to the 9th-12th centuries.

The object has the following dimensions: height - 125 mm; width - 86 mm; weight - 47 g.


 
National Museum of History of Moldova
 

Exhibitions

“ANCIENT JEWELRY. The treasures of the National Museum of History of Moldova”

Virtual exhibition

The National Museum of History of Moldova, in partnership with the Arbor Institute for Culture, invites you to discover or rediscover the exhibition "ANCIENT JEWELRY. The Treasures of the National Museum of History of Moldova", the new virtual exhibition hosted on Theopen-art.com, the first platform for art exhibitions in virtual reality in the Republic of Moldova and Romania.

The 24 pieces of jewelry presented in this virtual exhibition belong to the period between the 5th millennium BC and the 17th century AD, although all come from archaeological research of the sites between the Prut and the Dniester, their origin is associated with the communities which lived between the Balkans and the Carpathians and up to the Caucasus and had trade relations with the population of the Northern Black Sea region. The objects selected for this exhibition are rare, exceptional artifacts, made by our predecessors in metal and precious stones; they are of great cultural, historical and artistic value.

These impressive museum pieces, which can be admired in real at the permanent exhibition "Treasures of the Past" of the National Museum of History of Moldova, were found by Moldavian archaeologists during the period from the 1960s to 2015, if we refer to the latest find that is part of this collection presented in virtual reality. Although some of the discoveries were made by teams, we still want to mention a few names of archaeologists who brought to light and researched these valuable adornments: G. Fedorov, G. Chebotarenko, T. Shcherbakova, N. Chetraru, V. Vornic, V. Bubulici, and S. Popovici.

Made of gold or silver, adorned with precious stones or without, jewelry has always symbolized the wealth, influence, and sometimes magical power of its owners.

 

 

 

The National Museum of History of Moldova (NMHM) is one of the most important museum institutions in the Republic of Moldova, both in terms of its collections and its scientific prestige. Founded in 1983, the museum keeps 348,619 heritage items, a varied typology of which reflects the history of Moldova over the centuries, from prehistoric eras to the present, showing the human habitat, facts, events, outstanding personalities. Since its establishment until now, NMHM has organized over 650 temporary exhibitions in the country and abroad, focusing on its own collections, as well as on cooperation with other cultural and research institutions.

In recent years, the archaeological heritage of the Republic of Moldova has been highlighted in important international exhibitions organized in partnership with European and overseas museums, such as the exhibition "Cucuteni-Trypillia, Una Grande Civilta dell 'Antica Europa" at the Vatican, the exhibition "The Lost World of Old Europe. The Danube Valley, 5000-3500 BC" held in New York (USA), Oxford (UK), and Athens (Greece), "KRIEG - Eine Archaeologishe Spurensuche" in Halle (Germany), and "Visigoths. Rois de Toulouse" in Toulouse (France). In Romania, the NMHM heritage was part of important thematic exhibitions held in Bucharest, Iași, Suceava, Brăila, Vaslui, and Alba Iulia.

The Arbor Institute for Culture is a subsidiary of the Arbor Association for Culture and Arts in Romania, founded by cultural manager Victoria Nagy Vajda, whose mission is to promote the high artistic values of the Republic of Moldova and to support cultural mobility within the Romanian cultural space and abroad. The activity program of the association provides for the implementation of joint cultural projects with state cultural institutions, in addition to the extensive activities that it carries out in partnership with the independent artistic field. "ANCIENT JEWELRY. The Treasures of the National Museum of History of Moldova" is the second exhibition realized by the Arbor in partnership with a museum from the Republic of Moldova. The first VR exhibition, "Tribute to the Romanian Language: Bessarabian writers in the work of artist Valentina Rusu Ciobanu" was organized in partnership with the Mihail Kogălniceanu National Museum of Literature in the Republic of Moldova, under the curatorship of Maria Șleahtițchi and Victoria Nagy Vajda.

The VR gallery on the Theopen-art.com platform has an area of 300 square meters, distributed in 5 exhibition areas, where large or smaller exhibitions of painting, sculpture, photography, and multimedia can be held. The creation of the Theopen-art.com platform was supported by the Swiss Cooperation Office in the Republic of Moldova and by the non-governmental organizations Arbor Institute for Culture (Republic of Moldova) and the Arbor Association for Culture and Arts (Romania) through Victoria Nagy Vajda.

Virtual exhibitions can only be visited on a desktop or laptop computer with an updated web browser. VR exhibitions are not available from mobile phones.
Instructions: Use the arrow keys and the mouse/trackpad to navigate in the VR exhibition. To exit, press the ESC key twice.

Organizers: National Museum of History of Moldova, Arbor Institute for Culture
Curators: Mariana Vasilache, deputy director; Victoria Nagy Vajda, cultural manager
Photographers: Iurie Foca, Mihail Băț, Denis Topal
The photographs are taken from the catalog "Piese de giuvaiergerie antică din colecțiile Muzeului Național de Istorie a Moldovei" ("Pieces of ancient jewelry from the collections of the National Museum of History of Moldova") by Ana Niculiță, 2018; editors: Eugen Sava, Aurel Zanoci.
Link: https://www.theopen-art.com
VR: Augmented Space Agency - virtual frontier explorers, architects of augmented spaces and designers of new digitally mediated experiences.



 




Independent Moldova
Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic
Bessarabia and MASSR between the Two World Wars
Bessarabia and Moldavian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in the Period between the Two World Wars
Revival of National Movement
Time of Reforms and their Consequences
Abolition of Autonomy. Bessarabia – a New Tsarist Colony
Period of Relative Autonomy of Bessarabia within the Russian Empire
Phanariot Regime
Golden Age of the Romanian Culture
Struggle for Maintaining of Independence of Moldova
Formation of Independent Medieval State of Moldova
Era of the
Great Nomad Migrations
Early Middle Ages
Iron Age and Antiquity
Bronze Age
Aeneolithic Age
Neolithic Age
Palaeolithic Age

  
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#Exhibit of the Month

From the early days of Christianity, the cross meant not only an instrument of torture, but also a symbol of victory over death, a symbol of salvation. The object is made of silver, having the shape of a Byzantine cross with trapezoidal edges of the arms. The side arms and the one at the bottom seem to be turned inside a vessel (chalice (?)) with the trapezoidal "foot". The arms of the cross and of the "chalice" were ended with a decorative element in the shape of a sphere (drop). The cross has a decoration in relief, executed in the technique of filigree and granulation, consisting of drops, double and triple cords, circles with a drop in the center, and trefoils (?). In the center of the cross, at the intersection of the arms, there is a round mount with a cord-like edge, in which the pomegranate fruit is located...

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