Russian archaeologists have uncovered the mystery of the ancient base of Vyazma

© Photo : N.. Crennelated the 13th to 15th centuries on the territory of the VyazmaRussian archaeologists have uncovered the mystery of the ancient base of Vyazma© Photo : N.. Krenke

. Excavations on the site of buildings of the ancient Cathedral in Vyazma has shown that this ancient Russian town was founded in about the 13th century ad, the press service of the Institute of archaeology RAS.

«We have received archaeological grounds for Dating the time of emergence of the city of Vyazma, around which there was considerable uncertainty. The results obtained by radiocarbon Dating, show that urban settlement arose in the 13th century», — says Nikolay Krenke, Institute of archaeology, RAS.

According to the scientist, the Vyazma, one of the most ancient cities of the Smolensk region, until recently, remained the subject of fierce debate between historians and archaeologists. The existence of Vyazma reported an extremely small number of the annals, to the present time, scientists knew only a few things about her early history.

For example, Vyazma could not precisely arise before the beginning of the 12th century, as it does not appear in charters of the time, and probably already existed in the 16th century, as Vyaz’ma is mentioned in «the Czar rodoslovets» of the 16th century, extant in the «Velvet book» of the 17th century.

The first mention of the existence of this city is contained in the Laurentian chronicle of the 14th century, according to which it can be judged that the Vyazma in the early 14th century was already a pretty big city, which played a significant role in the politics of Russia at the time.

Krenke and his colleagues found that Vyaz’ma was founded in the 13th century, conducting the excavation in the so-called Cathedral hill – the hill where the castle and the first Cathedral of Vyazma, as well as the Trinity Cathedral of the 17th century. Excavations were held here at the end of the Soviet era, but they did not question the Foundation of the city more clear.

In 2017 on the West side of the Cathedral hill began new excavations in connection with construction on this place of the Church’s religious education center. These excavations showed that the lower area of the hill was used as pashennyh land in the middle ages, and that in its upper half the people lived in the pre-Mongol era. Here scientists have discovered the remains of a cemetery, several houses and lots of ancient artifacts.

In the most ancient strata, the archaeologists were able to find two slate whorls, bracelets of glass and ceramics, with typical ages 12-13 appearance. They were discovered on the surface of the buried soils, and while it is impossible to establish whether in the Cathedral hill settlement at this time, or is it only certain items brought here later.

Radiocarbon Dating of pottery shards found in the higher layers showed that they were in the soil in 13-14 centuries. This, as well as the age of the other artifacts from these layers indicates that Vyazma already existed in the 13th century.

How to tell Krenke and his colleagues, at the initial stage of city life in the centre of the Western part of the hill was a Church, surrounded by gradually expanding the cemetery. On the edges of the hill stood a dwelling house – here were found the remains of log cabins and groove from the walls. In this «residential area» was found status of silver – pendants, rings, bead.

In the cemetery on the hill all the buried were buried according to Christian rites: on the back in ritual leather shoes without things and crosses in wooden coffins made of oak boards, fastened with wooden planks special-ties. How to tell the scientists, the discovery and study of these graves will help us understand how people lived in Russia in the 13th century and in subsequent periods.

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