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Поволжская археология

Bone Сarving Workshops in the Trade and Craft District of Medieval Bolgar: identification criteria

Yavorskaya L.V. (Moscow, Kazan, Russian Federation), Badeev D.Yu. (Moscow, Russian Federation)

page 210–225

UDC 904 903-01 903-4


(1012.23 Kb)
Medieval bone carving workshops on the city of Bolgar were identified by archaeologists from clusters of the same type of raw waste or blanks in a particular place. The authors introduce a new “technological” criterion for fixing workshops. The raw and technological analysis of 12 collections of bone products from archaeological excavations 2011–18 in the craft and trade area of the central part of medieval Bolgar was carried out. Several items of frequently occurring products were identified that fell into the cultural layer at different stages of the product manufacturing process: blanks, unfinished products that broke during the manufacturing process, spoilage. By the concentration of such finds in the cultural layers in the studied part of the city, it was possible to establish two periods of functioning of bone-cutting workshops in the Golden Horde time. The planigraphy of finds related to bone carving in specific cultural strata of the studied area allows the authors to identify one estate of the Golden Horde period, on which not only ordinary, but also exotic raw materials were processed – walrus and elephant tusks. Also in two other estates of the late 13th – the first half of the 15th century signs of bone carving workshops were also noted.


archaeologythe medieval city of Bolgarhandicraft productionbone carvingmanufacture technologystratigraphyproducts from exotic raw materials – walrus and elephant tuskslocalization of bone carving workshops

About the author(s)

Yavorskaya Liliya V. Candidate of Historical Sciences. Associate Professor. Institute of Archaeology of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Dmitriya Ulyanova St., 19, Moscow, 117036, Russian Federation; Institute of Archaeology named after A.Kh. Khalikov, Tatarstan Academy of Sciences. Butlerov St., 30, Kazan, 420012, the Republic of Tatarstan, Russian Federation;

Badeev Denis Yu. Institute of Archaeology of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Dmitry Ulyanov St., 19, Moscow, 117036, Russian Federation;