XLI (2018)


XLI (2018)


Matières premières locales et allogènes dans les technocomplexes lithiques de Mitoc-Malu Galben

[Local and foreign raw matter in the stone assemblages of Mitoc-Malu Galben]

The procurement and use of lithic raw material by Upper Paleolithic communities has a great potential to reveal important aspects, such as patterns of movement, economic or technologic decisions, etc. The area located between the Eastern Carpathians and the Dniester River is rich in local sources of good-quality raw material, some well-known in the specialized literature as Prut flint and Dniester flint. Unsurprisingly, the Upper Paleolithic sites investigated in this area yielded significant amounts of lithic artifacts worked in local chert. However, other types of raw material were identified (flint, sandstone, shale, and opal), some originating from known sources (Eastern Carpathians, Volhynia). At Mitoc-Malu Galben, a similar pattern is noticeable. Nevertheless, some varieties of flint, such as the black and white flint or the green flint, were brought within the site in some particular stages from unknown areas.

Keywords: Upper Palaeolithic; Mitoc-Malu Galben; lithics; raw material procurement.


Noi date despre orizontul cultural Sălcuţa IV-Herculane II-III –Cheile Turzii

[New data on the Sălcuţa IV-Herculane II-III – Cheile Turzii Cultural horizon]

In this study we specified some data on the Sălcuţa IV-Herculane II-III-Cheile Turzii cultural horizon, starting from our own research from Cheile Turzii, but also looking at other similar findings. We analyzed the terms used in the literature, as well as the relative and absolute chronological data. We have specified the levels in which the Sălcuţa type materials appear at Peştera Ungurească and we have formulated more hypotheses regarding the penetration of these elements in Transylvania, as well as its contribution to birth of Bodrogkeresztúr – Toarte Pastilate/Knobbed-handles, along with other elements (Tiszapolgár). As arguments we used certain ceramic shapes and the manner of decorating it. The mentioned cultures were also attracted by the copper and gold resources. We pointed out several items related to findings from Peştera Ungurească, where is the only workshop to process gold jewelry (but also from other materials) related to Bodrogkeresztúr – Toarte Pastilate/Knobbed-handles.

Keywords: Copper Age; Bodrogkeresztúr – Knobbed-handles; terminology; discoveries; interpretation.


Ceramica de masă din vestul Mării Negre în mediul rural. Sarichioi – Sărătura

[West Black Sea tableware in a rural environment. Sarichioi-Sărătura]

In 1989 V. H. Baumann carried out an archaeological excavation in a rural settlement located at Sarichioi-Sărătura. The final report on this archaeological research was published in 1995. In this article we resume the analysis of the tableware discovered at Sarichioi-Sărătura. 78 ceramic fragments were analysed and the following conclusions were drawn: 24 specimens are Oriental imports from Asia Minor (ESB) and Aegean (ESC). The rest of the tableware was produced in the workshops in the Black Sea Basin. A particular ceramic category is the Pontic Gray Slip Ware (PGSW) produced by the local population. This ceramic category originates in the pottery specific to the La Tène period, and with the Roman occupation it begins to imitate ceramic forms specific to Pontic or Asia Minor workshops. The Pontic Gray Slip Ware is a useful indicator of the Romanization process of the West-Pontic population.

Keywords: Early Roman Tableware; Western Black Sea; Rural Environment; Romanization.


Incineration, inhumation and biritualism

As is well known, burial has a most prominent position among the rites of passage, which explains why it also enjoys, alongside other particular domains, special consideration on part of archaeology. The archaeological research carried out in the ancient cemetery from Braniște–Nemțișor (Neamț County), attributed to the Carpathian tumuli culture (4th century AD), has revealed a particular case: even though the necropolis is characterised by the use of incineration, it was truly surprising to discover an inhumation tomb alongside an incineration one, both housed by the same barrow. Tumulus no. 4, first explored in 1992, even though largely eroded by agricultural works, it nevertheless yielded several archaeological complexes. Foremost was a platform of fired earth, corresponding to an incineration pyre. Other notable discoveries were the numerous pits (23) that were in some cases located outside of the area with fire debris, in other cases preceded it, or even ran through it; it can be assumed that some of the pits were used for implanting the poles that supported the pyre. Outside of the fire-debris area, as well as under the aforementioned pits, right on top of the living floor, a skeleton was discovered, which belonged to a foetus according to the anthropological analysis. The inhumation of small children has been recorded in Europe as early as the Neolithic period, and continued until much later times, during the age of the Roman Empire, as has also been also documented in Daco-Roman necropoleis of the 2nd – 3rd centuries AD. The funerary structure, which supported the pyre and the cot on which the deceased lay, was erected right after the burial of the foetus. This was followed by the incineration and the covering of all the remains with a layer of earth, which in time was destroyed by the aforementioned agricultural activity. From the brief exposition above, it can be stated that the necropolis from Braniște–Nemțișor was of the incineration type. However, this rite does not exclude the use of inhumation, on account of certain customs that often can only by presumed. We can also mention the controversy regarding the Sarmatian or Dacian inhumations in the cemeteries from Roman and Free Dacia. Drawing from the considerations concerning the inhumation tomb from Braniște, it can be stated that in this case we have a rare instance of an agreement between the archaeological record, the anthropological analysis and the ancient source.

Keywords: Carpathian tumuli culture; Braniște – Nemțișor cemetery; incineration; inhumation; foetus.


Considerații geografice privind geneza oraşului medieval în Moldova Centrală

[Some geographic remarks regarding the emergence of the medieval towns in Central Moldavia]

The emergence and evolution of medieval towns and cities in the central region of Moldavia has its peculiarities, which are mainly due to location, acces to resources and ease of communication. All of these may be explained either by geographical settings or by historical constraints shaped by geography and topography. The paper summarizes the main issues that can be approached from the point of view of historical geography, wiz. medieval sources (narrative and cartographical, including explanations of this process, as given by early authors) and primary utilizations of geographical data in establishing patterns of emergence and evolution of medieval Moldavian towns.

Keywords: Medieval town; historical geography; early modern cartography; Medieval Moldavia.


Descoperiri monetare din Moldova. X

[Numismatic finds in Moldavia. X]

The paper presents new coin finds from various places in Moldavia. The coins are mostly stray finds or they belong to hoards in some cases. They date back to the ancient, medieval and modern times and they were discovered in the following locations: I. Fedești (Vaslui County) (8 AE, Istros-“Apollo” type, c. 340/330-313 BC; all the pieces are part of the well-known Fedești hoard); II. Focșasca (Vaslui County) (1 AR, Traianus, Rome, 100; 1 AR, Hadrianus, Rome, 128-132); III. Tăcuta (Vaslui County) (1 AR, Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus, Rome, 168; 1 AR, Marcus Aurelius, Rome, 171; 1 AR, Marcus Aurelius: Faustina II, Rome, 161-176; the coins may belong to a Roman imperial coin hoard); IV. Bordeasca Veche (Vrancea County) (1 AR, Polish Crown, Olkusz, Zygmunt III Waza, trojak, 1596); V. Chițoc (Vaslui County) (1 AR, Ottoman Empire, Mustafa III, Islâmbol, onluk, 1771/1772); VI. Cristești (Iași County) (1 AR, Principality of Moldavia, Alexandru I, Suceava, dublu Groș, 1415-1425); VII. Dobrovăț (Iași County) (2 AE, Principality of Moldavia, Iliaș, Suceava, Groș-type V, 1436-1442; 1 AE, Austrian Empire, Franz II. (I.), Wien, 1 Kreuzer, 1816); VIII. Focșani (Vrancea County) (1 AR, Principality of Moldavia, Petru I, Suceava, Groș, c. 1382-1386; 1 AR, Riga, Zygmunt III Waza, szeląg, 1620; 1 AE, Austrian Empire, Franz II. (I.), Schmöllnitz, 1 Kreuzer, 1800); IX. Iași (Iași County) (1 AR, Republic of Ragusa, tallero rettorale nuovo, 1752; it belongs to a hoard found in Iași in 1962-1965; 1 AR, Ottoman Empire, Mahmud II, Kostantiniye, onluk, 1818-1819); X. Lețcani (Iași County) (1 AV, Ottoman Empire, Abdülhamid I, Islâmbol, 1/2 zeri mahbub, 1781/1782; it is probably part of a hoard).

Keywords: coin finds; Moldavia; ancient; medieval and modern coins; stray finds; hoards.


Medalii și decorații din colecția Institutului de Arheologie din Iași (IV)

[Medals and decorations in the collections of the Institute of Archaeology in Iași. IV]

In the present study the authors focus on presenting four military medals of the Russian Empire. The first one is linked with the ill-fated campaign of Napoleon in Russia, commemorating the Russian victory of 1812 against the French invaders. Two other medals were minted in order to honor those who took part in the Russian-Japanese conflict of 1904-1905, while the last one is a 4th class Medal for Bravery issued for heroic deeds at the beginning of the First World War. The last medal is engraved with a low serial number which would date it approximately to the first half of 1915. Unfortunately, we have no data regarding the owners of these awards or of their heroic deeds.

Keywords: Phaleristics; medals and awards; 19th-20th centuries; Russian Empire; Napoleon’s Russian campaign; Russian-Japanese conflict; First World War.


Recent investigations in the Early Chalcolithic settlement of Balș – La Brigadă (Romania)

This paper presents the results of the investigations in the Early Chalcolithic settlement from Balș – La Brigadă. The site was surveyed in two instances: once in the 80s and recently in 2017 in order to assess its chronological framing, as a contribution to understanding the diachronic movement of the Precucuteni communities in the Bahlui River Basin. We estimated the surface of the site to cca 1 ha. The geomagnetic prospections helped at demarcating the eastern limits of the settlement. In the test trench were revealed the collapsed walls of a burnt dwelling, which allowed us to sample bones for the 14C dating of this specific building. The archaeological materials from the site, through their technology and typology, indicate an earlier beginning of the settlement than previously thought and probably the existence of at least two phases of inhabitation in the Early Chalcolithic. Artefacts and features from other periods were also revealed during the investigations.

Keywords: Early Chalcolithic Precucuteni culture; geomagnetic survey; chronological and phase framing; pottery technology; lithic assemblage; anthropomorphic and zoomorphic representations.


Prezenţa unor recipiente de lut legate de exploatarea sării în aşezări ale culturii Cucuteni de la răsărit de Carpaţi

[The presence in Cucutenian sites east of the Carpathians of certain clay vessels linked to the exploitation of salt]

The article discusses several types of clay pots, which have been linked to the exploitation of salt from saline sources and have been discovered in the settlements of the Cucuteni culture between the Carpathians and the Prut. The author presents several remains of briquettages, mostly from settlements in the sub-Carpathian area of Moldova. There are also some clay ladles, with analogies at Provadia (Bulgaria), whose functionality is also closely related to the exploitation of salt. The latter were discovered only at the site of Poduri (Bacău County). The sites discussed in the text are located, in most cases, at relatively small distances from the salt springs (5-7 km). For this reason, it is believed that the briquettage remains found in the settlements can be considered evidence of salt exchange, and those sites can be categorized as centers that controled salt sources and distributed it on large spaces. The settlements where such vestiges were discovered belong mainly to the Cucuteni A and A-B phases.

Keywords: Eneolithic; Cucuteni culture; settlements; briquetages; transport; exchange; salt.


Fashion by rituals: Rosette glass beads found in Sarmatian and Sântana de Mureș-Chernyakhov cultures (1st c. BC – 4th c. AD)

This paper will analyse the rosette glass beads (TM XXIII/362) found extra and intra Carpathian Basin, especially in graves belonging to the so-called Sarmatian and Sântana de Mureș-Chernyakhov cultures, during the 1st c. BC – 4th c. AD. I will also discuss to the possible origins of these types of beads: production within the borders of the Roman Empire and outside the Empire – in Pontic workshops or native production in Barbaricum. The manner of wearing the rosette beads will be another important topic, since they appear in rich female graves, probably the funerary features of female elite. Regularly they are accompanied by other polychrome beads and Roman products, especially enamelled brooches or disc-shape brooches.

Keywords: Rosette glass beads; Sarmatians; Sântana de Mureș-Chernyakhov; North Black Sea; Roman imports.


Descoperiri arheologice efectuate  în situl de la Ruginoasa, județul Neamț

[Archaeological finds in the site of Ruginoasa, Neamț County]

Field research carried out in territory of the commune of Ruginoasa, Neamț County, has brought in to the light several ceramic fragments assigned to the period of the 2nd-3rd centuries AD. Following these research a new site belonging to the Poienești-Vârşeşcoiu culture was discovered. The importance of this new site is also due to the discovery in proximity of an imperial hoard coins.

Keywords: ceramic; Ruginoasa; Neamț county; 2nd -3rd centuries.


Observații privind câteva fragmente ceramice  de tip Vest-Podolian descoperite în cetățile getice de la Stâncești

[Some remarks regarding certain West-Podolian-type potsherds uncovered in the Getic fortified sites of Stâncești]

The present article brings into attention a number of previously unpublished pottery shards belonging to the Western Podolian culture that were discovered in the Iron Age Getian forts of Stâncești. Although, in very short numbers, their presence is important as they represent a good chronological indicator for the earliest phase of habitation from Stâncești dated between the 6th – 5th centuries BC.

Keywords: Iron Age; Pottery; Getae; Scythians; Western Podolian Group; Stâncești.


O reprezentare a lui Marsyas pe o gemă de la Romula

[A depiction of Marsyas on a gem uncovered in Romula]     

This small article is focused on the representation of Marsyas, on a gemstone from Romula. The piece is unpublished and the representation of Marsyas like a young boy is quite unusual. It is the only known representation of Marsyas in the gliptic of the province of Dacia Inferior, from which somehow results the uniqueness of the piece in question, at least for this area. From the point of view of artistic achievement, the piece betrays a accurate and careful execution. After the manner of engraving, the gemstone from Romula looks to join the Hellenistic or Italic Hellenistic style, characteristic from the Augustus period of time and the first century A.D. Furthermore, the known analogies on this kind of representations could indicate an early dating of the Marsyas gemstone at the earliest at the beginning of the 2nd century AD. In any case, this gemstone and its representation, complete the repertoire of the representations of divinities from Romula, the capital of Dacia Inferior.

Keywords: gemstone; Marsyas; flute; Romula; Dacia Inferior.


Experimental (re)construction and use of a Late Cucuteni-Trypillia kiln

This paper describes an archaeological experiment which took place in September 2017 in Stolniceni, Edineț County, Republic of Moldova, based on the recent discovery, in the Cucuteni-Trypillia site from the locality, of an exceptional two-chambered updraft kiln. First are presented the phases of the (re)construction of the complex, which strictly followed the dimensions and constitutive elements of the original discovery. After the kiln was finished and dried, a first attempt was made to fire a batch of about 50 vessels of various sizes. During over 10 hours of continuous firing, the kiln worked perfectly, with no incidents that could jeopardize the pottery. In the end, although the vessels seemed to be very well fired in an oxidizing atmosphere, it was proved that the temperatures reached in the kiln (measured with Orton temperature cones and confirmed by a series of XRD analyses) were inferior to those known (based on analyses) for Cucuteni- Trypillia ceramics. However, this first experimental attempt allowed some interesting observations, being a step forward in understanding this complex chaine opératoire of prehistoric pottery production.

Keywords: Cucuteni-Trypillia Culture; pottery kiln; experimental archaeology; firing temperatures; XRD analysis.


Rom. Baniţă (‘vas de lemn folosit ca măsură  pentru cereale’) şi legăturile sale cu familia lexicală a rom. Ban (‘titlu feudal’) [Romanian baniţă (‘a wooden vessel used as measure for grain’) and its connections with the lexical family of Romanian ban (‘feudal title’)]

The first part of this article contains the author’s objections to the mainstream etymological opinions according to which Romanian (Rm.) baniţă was borrowed from Slavic, the putative source-word being a Slavic *banica. The latter has been presented as a suffixed diminutive from Slavic banja ‘bath (tub)’, in its turn borrowed from Vulgar Latin (*bannea < Lat. balnea). In fact such an etymological interpretation is debilitated by a number of confusions and conflations. Therefore, this author propounds a connection between baniţă and ban ‘local authority’ (later ‘feudal title’), whose Old Germanic origin has already been demonstrated. In such a case baniţă would appear to have designated a standard measure for grain that dates from the period during which Germanic elites imposed tributal systems on non-Germanic populations of Eastern and Southeastern Europe.

Keywords: Romanian “baniţă”; Romanian “ban”; etymology; Slavic words; Old Germanic.