Medieval jewelry at the “Palace Center – East” site in Pliska
Keywords:Pliska, medieval jewelry, rings, earrings, pendants, bracelets
This paper presents jewelry falling into two categories, divided by their material composition – a group of metal items, and a group made from glass. They were found during archaeological excavations of the “Palace Center – East” site in Pliska. The metal jewelry group comprises seven rings, one earring, two pendants, three bracelets, two metal buttons, and one fibula. The second large group of jewelry is comprised of glass bracelets, where 24 fragments are presented, illustrating their typological diversity.
The systematization of the stratigraphic data allowed us to group the finds into three chronological periods. In the earliest stratigraphic horizon, horizon I (ca. 900 – 976), a small number of metal jewelry items were found, and the absence of glass bracelets is noticeable. The largest number of finds are from stratigraphic horizons II (970 – 1030/35) and III (1030/35 – ca. 1064), the peak being in horizon II.
A quantitative analysis of the materials by stratigraphic levels complements the picture of life during different periods from the development of post-metropolitan Pliska. The results show that in horizon I, defined as the “Bulgarian” post-metropolitan period, the number of finds is relatively small. The most significant increase in the quantity of jewelry is in horizon II, defined as the “Byzantine” period of Pliska – this is the time of the most significant demographic growth of the city. The number of finds in the last horizon, III, is also relatively high, and it is defined as “post-Byzantine” or “Pecheneg” period in Pliska, but it should be noted here that the majority of the finds were probably crafted in the earlier period and used in the following two-three decades.
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