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.
Volume 8 (2007): Weapons, Weaponry and Man (In memoriam Vytautas Kazakevičius), pp. 328–333
Three of the most remarkable Viking Period silver hoards found on Gotland form the topic of this paper. They all offer viewpoints upon trade, tribute and warfare in Gotland and the East Baltic area. The oldest of them (t.p.q. 870/1) was found in 1999 at Spillings in Othem parish. It illustrates the enormous influx of Arabic silver in its epoch, weighing more than 66kg, of which 17.5kg are made up of about 14,000 coins. Both of the other hoards were found at Ocksarve in Hemse parish, the first in 1920, the second in 1997. The hoard of 1920 i.a contains 112 Byzantine millaresia struck for Constantine IX Monomachos (1042–1055), probably part of the salary of a Gotlandic mercenary and ex-member of the Varangian guard. The second hoard (t.p.q. 999) is interesting from a metrological point of view, as it contains several interlinked payment spirals and bundles containing hack-silver. There is also a magnificent silver sword chape, probably a masterpiece from a Kievan workshop, with a graffito showing two crossed single-edged swords of J. Petersen’s type T, V or W.