The article discusses ceramic fragments and their primary processing at the report level of archaeological explorations. Archaeologists in Lithuania still employ two methods in the description of fragments, text and tables, of which the latter holds most promise. Their wider employment is restricted by the absence of general standards. Out of at least 36 attributes that characterise ceramic fragments, five main ones can be distinguished (ceramic group, type of utensil fragment, diameter, number, weight), and they should be obligatory in every report on archaeological research.
The aim of this article is to update the data on the research into Palanga settlement carried out in 1958, the objectives being to publish the discovered material to its full extent, to determine the lithological and cultural layers of the settlement, and to determine the cultural dependence of the communities that lived there. The following are used in the article: archaeological, osteological and macrobotanical material, which is kept at Kretinga Museum and which has not been published till now; stratigraphy of geological strata obtained during the drilling of geological boreholes; and radiocarbon dating of peat from the cultural layer level. The natural and cultural landscape of the habitation period of Palanga Stone Age settlement is also presented.
In the 12th century, the Curonians dwelt in the east Baltic region between the Rīga area in the north and Klaipėda in the south. They reached the peak of their economic, political and cultural achievements in the 11th century and the first half of the 12th century. The roots of piracy as a phenomenon have a social character. The most active period of the Curonian Vikings begins in around the mid-tenth century, and lasts until the arrival of the Germans in the 13th century. The well-organised piracy of the Curonians became dangerous to navigation on an important maritime trading route along the east Baltic coast. The Curonians attacked traders’ boats, robbed coastal churches, devastated Danish and Swedish coastal areas, and even stayed for a while. In the times of the Teutonic Order, in periods of diplomatic and military conflict or trading competition, even officials did not avoid robbery at sea. The Palanga coastal population used to plunder shipwrecked boats, and went marauding in coastal waters until the middle of the 18th century.
Favourable conditions for the development of towns in northern central Lithuania occurred only as late as the 15th and 16th centuries. In the 16th and early 17th centuries, some settlements developed into small towns of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. It was at this time that a mixed urbanistic system with a radial street network and a rectangular market square formed. The absolute majority of 16th to 18th-century buildings in the towns of the Šiauliai Crown Estate, just as in most of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, were built of timber. Only from the early 17th century did the construction begin of brick buildings intended for religious or public purposes (such as the town hall in Joniškis). A more distinct separation between the development of towns can be made on the basis of the specific features of finds. These are finds related to trade, handicrafts and business: coins and hoards of coins, certain types of pottery, tiles, and work tools related to specific handicrafts, products and materials.
The aim of our article is to discuss a rather well-known artefact from the Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania in Vilnius. Although the bracelet has been somewhat widely published and exhibited, the information that usually accompanies it is little more than modest. Although it is generally pointed out that the bracelet is adorned with an Arabic inscription, there is still a question mark present. In this article, we will offer a transcription and a translation of the inscription on the bracelet, along with some parallels, which will allow us to determine the origin of this unique find in Lithuanian archaeological material.
The Orthodox community which settled in the Civitas Rutenica area in Vilnius started building their houses of worship (Orthodox churches) as early as the first half of the 14th century. At the beginning of the 15th century, there were 12 of them inside the quarter and two outside it. These churches, reflecting Orthodox culture and showing the usual features of their construction, predetermined the further development of this part of the city, and the development of whole areas of Vilnius. Locating them precisely enables us to better understand the urban development of Vilnius, and trends within this development.
The article looks at possible ways and origins of cultural influence by the example of the pottery production of the New Jerusalem Monastery in the 17th and 18th centuries. It tells about the pottery of the New Jerusalem Monastery, and an attempt is made to trace signs of the influence of different craftsmen, and the situation in general for the development of pottery production and its special features.
This paper presents briefly the history of the Nurmuiža estate and its owners, and summarises the results of the 2008 and 2009 archaeological investigations. Nurmuiža belonged to the von Fircks, one of the most influential families of the Duchy of Courland and Semigallia. The influential positions the family held since the 16th century demanded a certain standard of presentation. The visually impressive Nurmuiža estate served this purpose well. The family’s status was also shown by its settled standard of living. The way of life on the estate has so far been deduced from written and iconographic sources. The aim of this paper is to look at the 16th to 19th-century luxury lifestyle at Nurmuiža through the most interesting archaeological finds from two seasons of excavations.