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#Exhibit of the Month

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Amphoras are massive vessels originating from the ancient Greek world, executed on the potter's wheel, in which Greek merchants, in the process of their trade with other territories and peoples, transported, in particular, Greek wine, olive oil, salted olives, paints, nuts, etc. The shape of the Greek commercial amphora, in the opinion of some researchers, vaguely recalls the female figure, having, probably, at the beginning, a sacred character. Among the main features of the amphorae are well-thought-out metric proportions. The full amphora, placed in a horizontal position, rested on the body and on the elongated foot in such a way that the upper part of the vessel and the high neck were permanently raised obliquely, so that the liquid would not spill. The sharp shape of the foot required special fixation, either on special supports, or the lower part of the body was buried in the ground or sand. The deep inner cavity of the leg did not allow the liquid in the vessel to become cloudy during the transport process, the sediments remaining stored inside the leg.

Among the dozens of city-states in ancient Greece, which practiced trade with the local populations of the Black Sea region (Euxine Bridge), there is also the city of Mende (Μένδη), located on the Kassandra arm (Κασσάνδρας) of the Halkidiki peninsula (Halkidiki - Χαλκιδική). It is considered that the foundation of the city of Mende took place in the century VIII BC. The main article of trade of this Greek polis was wine, considered of superior quality and even indicated by Hippocrates as a medicine in the treatment of certain diseases. Starting with the century 6th century BC, the city of Mende experienced economic growth, especially in the Circumpontian region, and in the V-IV BC Mendiot wine appears more and more frequently in the local markets of this region.

Even some barbarian tribes, according to the Greek tradition, often used wine amphorae in the funeral process, when they were placed, as an offering, in the graves, together with other objects, which were either brought as an offering to the gods, or were intended to serve the deceased in the afterlife.

Such a funerary complex was discovered by archaeologist Nicolae Chetraru in 1987 - the Scythian tumulus no. 45 from Dubăsari. The deceased was cremated, and three amphorae and a large bronze cauldron were placed in the grave. Among the amphorae (all belonging to Greek wine centers) was one from Mende, along with two others from Chios. Since the wines of Mende and Chios were considered expensive wines, as was the bronze cauldron, their presence in this mound was an indication of a privileged financial and social position of the person cremated here.

The Mende amphora from tomb 1 of mound 45 at Dubăsari is, at the moment, the only complete vessel from this center on the territory of the Republic. Moldova, although fragments of Mendiot amphorae have also been discovered in other archaeological sites in the country.

The vessel is made of a yellowish-brown paste with chewed sand and many particles of mica. The amphora has the following basic dimensions: height - 740 mm, depth - 610 mm, maximum diameter - 390 mm.

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Publications Journal „Tyragetia"   vol. VII [XXII], nr. 1


Archaeological research on the site of Saharna Mare (2009-2012) (II)
ISSN 1857-0240
E-ISSN 2537-6330

Archaeological research on the site of Saharna Mare (2009-2012) (II)

Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. VII [XXII], nr. 1, Arheologie. Istorie Antică

This article presents information on the findings relating to the Thraco-Getian period, which have been identified as a result of archaeological excavations in 2009-2012 on the site of Saharna Mare.

In examining orthophotomaps and the results and geomagnetic prospecting there was discovered a new defensive line traced over 650 m to the north, east and south sides of the cape. Its ends are connected to the "wall" on the west side, thus forming an integral defensive system surrounding the fortress on all sides and having an area of approximately 6 hectares. This recently discovered defensive line represents a "rampart" barely visible on the current surface of the soil, having at the base a width of 3 m and a height of about 0.3-0.4 m. Toward the east this "rampart" meanders, forming eight bastions grouped in four on the northern and southern flanks.

As a result of archaeological investigation it was found that the identified "rampart" is the remains of a defensive wall built of two rows of wooden poles dug vertically into the mainland. The space between rows was filled with stones and earth, thus forming a fortification of about 1.1-1.6 m width.

In the settlement there were also examined two above-ground structures, 36 household pits and fairly rich and varied inventory attributable to the 8th/7th - 3rd centuries BC.

Judging by its strategic location, powerful defensive structures, and by the findings found in the area of the site, it can be assumed that the fortified settlement of Saharna Mare was an important economic, political, administrative and military center of the Middle Dniester region.

List of illustrations:

Fig. 1. Geographical and topographical location of the Saharna Mare site.

Fig. 2. Saharna Mare. Topographic plan and magnetometric map.

Fig. 3. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavations 13/2009 and 14/2010.

Fig. 4. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 13A/2010.

Fig. 5. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 15/2010-2011.

Fig. 6. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 16/2010.

Fig. 7. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 17/2011.

Fig. 8. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 18/2012.

Fig. 9. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 19/2012.

Fig. 10. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 20/2012.

Fig. 11. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 21/2012.

Fig. 12. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the excavation 22/2012.

Fig. 13. Saharna Mare. Defensive line on the northeast side of the cape: 1 - orthophotomap; 2 - location of the bastions; 3 - topographic map; 4 - magnetometric map; 5 - view from the south to the bastions no. 2 and no. 3; 6 - view from the west to the bastion no. 2.

Fig. 14. Saharna Mare. Bastion no. 2: 1 - traces of burning in the ruins of the bastion; 2 - charred beam; 3 - Pit of a pole from the structure of the bastion; 4 - section through the structure of a „wall"; 5 - profile of the excavation no. 19.

Fig. 15. Saharna Mare. Objects found in the ruins of a defensive „wall" and within the bastion no. 2 (1, 3 - bronze; 2, 4 - iron; 7-13 - clay; 11, 14 - bone; 15 - horn)

Fig. 16. Saharna Mare. Pottery found in the ruins of a defensive „wall" of the bastion no. 2.

Fig. 17. Saharna Mare. Pottery found within the bastion no. 2.

Fig. 18. Saharna Mare. Remains of a defensive „wall" in the eastern side of the fortress: 1 - stones from filling; 2 - stone filling and an contour of the ditch behind the wall; 3, 4 - pole-pits from the construction of defensive „wall"; 5 - profile of the excavation no. 17.

Fig. 19. Saharna Mare. Material found in the ruins of a defensive „wall" (excavation 17).

Fig. 20. Saharna Mare. Remains of a defensive „wall" in the southern side of the fortress (excavation 20).

Fig. 21. Saharna Mare. Stone structures at the base of a defensive „wall" (excavation 20).

Fig. 22. Saharna Mare. Material from the filling of a defensive „wall" (excavations 21 and 22).

Fig. 23. Saharna Mare. Variant of reconstruction of a Thraco-Getae defensive „wall".

Fig. 24. Saharna Mare. Contour of the defensive line of the 5th/4th - 3rd centuries BC.

Fig. 25. Saharna Mare. Structure no. 4: 1 - plan and profile; 2-4 - remnants of charred poles in situ.

Fig. 26. Saharna Mare. Structure no. 4. Fragments of fired clay with prints of twigs from the debris .

Fig. 27. Saharna Mare. Oven from the structure no. 4.

Fig. 28. Saharna Mare. Findings from the structure no. 4.

Fig. 29. Saharna Mare. Structure no. 4. Pottery.

Fig. 30. Saharna Mare. Structure no. 5: 1 - ruins of the structure; 2 - contour of the pole-pits at the base of structure.

Fig. 31. Saharna Mare. Findings from the structure no. 5.

Fig. 32. Saharna Mare. 1 - Plan and profile of the pit no. 141; 2 - plan and profile of the pit no. 142; 3 - plan and profile of the pit no. 143; 4 - plan and profile of the pit no. 144; 5 - plan and profile of the pit no. 145; 6 - plan and profile of the pit no. 146; 7 - plan and profile of the pit no. 147; 8-10 - findings from the pit no. 141; 11-15 - findings from the pit no. 142; 16-18 - findings from the pit no. 143; 19-21 - findings from the pit no. 146; 22, 23 - findings from the pit no. 147.

Fig. 33. Saharna Mare. Pit no. 148: 1 - plan and profile; 2-6 - findings from the pit.

Fig. 34. Saharna Mare. Pit no. 149: 1 - plan and profile; 2-12 - findings from the pit.

Fig. 35. Saharna Mare. 1 - Plan and profile of the pit no. 150; 2 - plan and profile of the pits no. 113, no. 151, and no. 152.

Fig. 36. Saharna Mare. 1-3 - Findings from the pit no. 150; 4-9 - findings from the pit no. 151; 10-12 - findings from the pit no. 152.

Fig. 37. Saharna Mare. 1 - Plan and profile of the pit no. 153; 2 - plan and profile of the pit no. 154.

Fig. 38. Saharna Mare. 1 - Findings from the pit no. 153; 2-9 - findings from the pit no. 154.

Fig. 39. Saharna Mare. Pit no. 155: 1 - plan and profile of the pit; 2-15 - findings from the pit.

Fig. 40. Saharna Mare. 1 - Plan and profile of the pit no. 156; 2 - plan and profile of the pit no. 157; 3 - plan and profile of the pit no. 158.

Fig. 41. Saharna Mare. 1-6 - Findings from the pit no. 156; 7-10 - findings from the pit no. 157; 11-17 - findings from the pit no. 158.

Fig. 42. Saharna Mare. 1 - Plan and profile of the pits no. 159 and no. 160; 2 - plan and profile of the pit no. 161; 3 - plan and profile of the pit no. 162.

Fig. 43. Saharna Mare. 1 - Findings from the pit no. 159; 2 - findings from the pit no. 160; 3-6 - findings from the pit no. 161; 7 - findings from the pit no. 162.

Fig. 44. Saharna Mare. Plan and profile of the pits without chronological indicators, attributed to the Thraco-Getae horizon.

Fig. 45. Saharna Mare. Iron tools from the cultural layer.

Fig. 46. Saharna Mare. Items of bone (1-4) and horn (5) from the cultural layer.

Fig. 47. Saharna Mare. Stone tools from the cultural layer.

Fig. 48. Saharna Mare. Clay utensils from the cultural layer.

Fig. 49. Saharna Mare. Weapon of metal (1, 2 - iron; 3 - bronze).

Fig. 50. Saharna Mare. Bracelets (1-3 - iron; 4 - copper; 5 - silver).

Fig. 51. Saharna Mare. 1-5 - Ornaments; 6-10 - clothing items (1-4, 10 - silver; 5 - bronze; 6-9 - iron).

Fig. 52. Saharna Mare. Amber beads.

Fig. 53. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 54. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 55. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 56. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 57. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 58. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 59. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 60. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 61. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 62. Saharna Mare. Fragments of vessels from the cultural layer.

Fig. 63. Saharna Mare. Fragments of pots from the cultural layer.

Fig. 64. Saharna Mare. Fragments of bowls from the cultural layer.

Fig. 65. Saharna Mare. Fragments of bowls from the cultural layer.

Fig. 66. Saharna Mare. Fragments of bowls from the cultural layer.

Fig. 67. Saharna Mare. Fragments of bowls from the cultural layer.

Fig. 68. Saharna Mare. Fragments of fine ware: 1 - black-glazed wares; 2, 3 - grey wares.

Fig. 69. Saharna Mare. Fragments of amphorae.

Ion Niculiță, Aurel Zanoci, Mihail Băț, Sergiu Matveev
Archaeological investigations at the site of Saharna Mare (2009-2011) (I)
Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. VI [XXI], nr. 1, Arheologie. Istorie Antică
Mihail Băț
Early Iron Age settlement in Ţahnăuţi, Rezina District
Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. XI [XXVI], nr. 1, Arheologie. Istorie Antică
Sergiu Matveev
The reflection of the ethno-cultural processes from the 2nd-14th centuries between Prut and Nistru in the soviet ethno-folck studies
Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. I [XVI], nr. 2, Istorie. Muzeologie Chișinău, 2007
Aurel Zanoci, Mihail Băț
Archeological researches conducted in 2006 at the Thracian-Getian settlement Saharna „La Şanț”
Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. I [XVI], nr. 1, Arheologie. Istorie Antică Chișinău, 2007
Sergiu Matveev
The beginnings of archaeology in MSSR
Tyragetia, serie nouă, vol. X [XXV], nr. 1, Arheologie. Istorie Antică



 

 

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#Exhibit of the Month

Amphoras are massive vessels originating from the ancient Greek world, executed on the potter's wheel, in which Greek merchants, in the process of their trade with other territories and peoples, transported, in particular, Greek wine, olive oil, salted olives, paints, nuts, etc. The shape of the Greek commercial amphora, in the opinion of some researchers, vaguely recalls the female figure, having, probably, at the beginning, a sacred character. Among the main features of the amphorae are well-thought-out metric proportions...

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The National Museum of History of Moldova takes place among the most significant museum institutions of the Republic of Moldova, in terms of both its collection and scientific reputation.
©2006-2022 National Museum of History of Moldova
Visit museum 31 August 1989 St., 121 A, MD 2012, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
Phones:
Secretariat: +373 (22) 24-43-25
Department of Public Relations and Museum Education: +373 (22) 24-04-26
Fax: +373 (22) 24-43-69
E-mail: office@nationalmuseum.md
Technical Support: info@nationalmuseum.md
Web site administration and maintenance: Andrei EMILCIUC

 



The National Museum of History of Moldova takes place among the most significant museum institutions of the Republic of Moldova, in terms of both its collection and scientific reputation.
©2006-2022 National Museum of History of Moldova
Visit museum 31 August 1989 St., 121 A, MD 2012, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
Phones:
Secretariat: +373 (22) 24-43-25
Department of Public Relations and Museum Education: +373 (22) 24-04-26
Fax: +373 (22) 24-43-69
E-mail: office@nationalmuseum.md
Technical Support: info@nationalmuseum.md
Web site administration and maintenance: Andrei EMILCIUC

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The National Museum of History of Moldova takes place among the most significant museum institutions of the Republic of Moldova, in terms of both its collection and scientific reputation.
©2006-2022 National Museum of History of Moldova
Visit museum 31 August 1989 St., 121 A, MD 2012, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
Phones:
Secretariat: +373 (22) 24-43-25
Department of Public Relations and Museum Education: +373 (22) 24-04-26
Fax: +373 (22) 24-43-69
E-mail: office@nationalmuseum.md
Technical Support: info@nationalmuseum.md
Web site administration and maintenance: Andrei EMILCIUC