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#Exhibit of the Month

Among the Greek mythological figures, there is a satyr (Ancient Greek: Σάτυρος), also called Silenus, a male spirit of nature and forest, known to be the companion of the gods Pan and Dionysus. Satyrs were imagined as dancing in the fields, drinking wine with Dionysus and chasing maenads and nymphs. According to the descriptions in myths, they had human-like upper part of the body and the horse-like or goat-like legs, and also a long and bushy tail.

Gradually, animalistic features in the image of a satyr recede, their lower limbs become human (legs, not hooves). The satyr Marsyas (Μάρσιας) plays a special role in Greek legends. Sometimes the god Pan is depicted in the guise of a satyr.

The historian Hesiod tells us about their origins, mentioning that satyrs are wine lovers, and legends also claim that it was the satyrs who saved Ariadne (Aριαδνη), the daughter of King Minos from Crete, who was abandoned by her lover Theseus (Θησεύς) on the island of Naxos (Νάξος).

It is believed that satyrs have tremendous strength and endurance, and also love music, and one of their main attributes is the flute. Also among the attributes of satyrs there are the thyrsus, vessels for wine, and wineskins.

The figurine of a satyr from the NMHM collection is unique. It is made of bronze and has a height of 17 cm. The figurine is made in a stylized manner, the character is presented in a standing position, as if he is holding something in his right hand, and his left hand is damaged. The left leg is also not completely preserved. Some researchers consider it to be the handle of a vessel (possibly of a cup). Certainly, the object had a symbolic character.

We assume that this artifact belongs to the period of Classical Greece and dates back to the 4th century BC.

 
National Museum of History of Moldova
 

Exhibitions

“Guardians of age-old borders”

70 years since the beginning of systematic research of medieval settlements on the Dniester

2020 marks the 70th anniversary of the beginning of systematic archaeological research of the early medieval fortified settlements between the Răut and the Dniester. The investigations carried out in the sites of Echimăuți, Alcedar, Lucășeuca, Țareuca, Rudi - Farfuria Turcească, Poiana-Cunicea, Tătărăuca Nouă-Germănărie and others made it possible to reconstruct the historical and archaeological realities of the 9th-11th centuries AD. It was discovered that these complex strategic systems, consisting of a ditch, a rampart made of earth and wood, endowed with strong palisades, were built in the context of imminent threat from the outside and that they could be built by strong, well-cohesive political structures at the regional level.

The exhibition shows some of the discoveries in the northeast of the Prut-Dniester territory, represented by fortified round settlements built a fundamentis, "long houses", iron melting furnaces, craft workshops for making tools and weapons of iron, bone and horn or for the manufacture of silverware, burial mounds with cremation graves, hoards of tools and weapons, battle axes, hoards of silver objects containing Islamic and Byzantine coins, silver ingots, Scandinavian pendants with animalistic ornaments, including that of Gnezdovo type, iron weights in bronze foil, balance scale, miniature iron or bronze axes, amber beads, and so on. Some of these materials are presented in the basic exhibition or in the museum exhibition Treasury, others are kept in the collections of some museums in the Republic of Moldova or abroad.

The appearance, during this period, of defensive systems in the area between the rivers of Răut and Dniester, as well as in northern Bukovina, was associated with the penetration of Scandinavians into the region, who followed on the old trade route from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea, to the Balkans, to Byzantium, Constantinople or Baghdad, along the Vistula and Dniester rivers, also called "the second trade route from the Varangians to the Greeks". The fortified settlements were places of rest for merchants or intermediate military camps, which over time became prosperous military, administrative, craft and trade centers, real medieval proto-cities, to the construction of which the local Romanian population contributed. Apparently, they were destroyed by the invasion of the Turanian nomads at the end of the 11th century.

The archaeological artifacts that form the basis of the exhibition are originals and only some of them have been subjected to restoration and conservation. Several battle axes are part of Mr. Victor Borshevich's private collection. The exhibition is complemented by a model of the fortified settlement from Echimăuți, made in the 1960s, several reconstructions of tools and weapons, and various and images that illustrate the subject matter.

The exhibition, through the artifacts displayed, contributes to the increase of the educational and cultural potential of the museum activities, to the promotion of the values of national heritage in the international context.

Curator: Ion Tentiuc, PhD



 




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

Among the Greek mythological figures, there is a satyr (Ancient Greek: Σάτυρος), also called Silenus, a male spirit of nature and forest, known to be the companion of the gods Pan and Dionysus. Satyrs were imagined as dancing in the fields, drinking wine with Dionysus and chasing maenads and nymphs. According to the descriptions in myths, they had human-like upper part of the body and the horse-like or goat-like legs, and also a long and bushy tail. Gradually, animalistic features in the image of a satyr recede, their lower limbs become human (legs, not hooves). The satyr Marsyas (Μάρσιας) plays a special role in Greek legends. Sometimes the god Pan is depicted in the guise of a satyr...

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