THE RECONSTRUCTION OF THE XIII–XIV CENTURY CRAFTSMAN'S YARDS OF KERNAVĖ
A scientific reconstruction of three yards of the citizens of medieval Kernavė that lived at the base of Kernavė's mounds in the valley of Pajauta. During archaeological research in a damp cultural layer well preserved remains of wooden buildings and fences were found. Alongside them a multitude of organic artefacts were also discovered - wood, bark, leather and bone. They provided invaluable information about the lives, crafts and surroundings of the medieval citizens of Kernavė. The findings showed that during the medieval period these yards were home to a few generations of jewelers, smiths and bone workers. Their creations and work tools can be seen in the exposition of the Kernavė archaeological site museum.
Medieval Kernavė is a wooden city. A large community of craftsmen, merchants and warriors flourished here. During the 13th - 14th century the city covered around 40 ha. It had well inforced mounds that acted as a defensive system and a well established network of streets. The yards were separated from the streets and neighbours by vertical fences made from planks and logs or by fences weaved from branches. One living house and several workshops or farm houses made up a typical yard. The buildings were built using logs with plank roofs. Split plank floors were found in living houses and workshops. Clay ovens were used to heat the homes and prepare food. Conifer wood was used for all construction work. Buildings were built without using nails and rich, smith-made iron details are rare.
13th - 14th century Kernavė was an important political, administrative and economic center of Lithuania. A reconstructed fragment of Kernavė's past glory is an attempt to reconstruct the living conditions of the people of that time.