Principal outcomes of the excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche near Novgorod in 2016-2017: archeology and architecture
The paper presents the main results of the extensive architectural and archaeological excavation of the stone church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche, built in 1103 by Prince Mstislav the Great and rebuilt in 1342-1343. This latter church, having survived in part, was conserved, and the current plans for the museumification of the 1103 church allowed for its complete excavation, which provided an opportunity to assess the architecture of this second oldest stone church building of Novgorod (the Sophia of Novgorod being the earliest). We now see this monument as a transitive point in local architectural history. Its large size, common type and architectural details firmly link it to the south Russian tradition of Kiev. At the same time, it stands at the very beginning of the Novgorod architectural tradition. The paper also covers some of the most vivid details of the monument and the traces of its rebuilding, as well as information on the pre-church layers unearthed during the excavation.
Gippius Alexey Alexeevich (Moscow, HSE, ISS RAS), Mikheev Savva Mikhailovich (Moscow, ISS RAS)
Complex of the Glagolitic graffiti of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
The paper discusses ten 12th- century Glagolitic graffiti, one of them being the longest old Russian Glagolitic text. The inscriptions are of interest both in terms of their content and of their paleography, which has allowed us to presume the existence of a specific Novgorod school of Glagolitic writing in the 11th and 12th centuries.
Gippius Alexey Alexeevich (Moscow HSE, ISS RAS), Mikheev Savva Mikhailovich (Moscow, ISS RAS)
The inscription on the death of Vsevolod-Gavriil Mstislavich and other Cyrillic graffiti in the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
The paper examines one of the most extensive Slavic epigraphic texts - the graffito mentioning the death of prince Vsevolod-Gavriil Mstislavich in Pskov in February 1138. It was to honor the birth of his son that prince Mstislav the Great laid the foundation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche. The paper also covers other Cyrillic graffiti on the walls of this church.
Gaidukov Petr Grigorievich (Moscow, IA RAS)
Sfragistic finds from the excavations of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche in 2016-2017
This is a study of the four Russian pendent seals (11th - 14th centuries) and one Western European commodity seal, found during the excavations of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche.
Gaidukov Petr Grigorievich (Moscow, IA RAS), Gomzin Andrey Alexandrovich (Ryazan, IA RAS)
Coin finds from the excavations of the church of the Annunciation in 2016-2017
The authors discuss the Kufic and Western European coins discovered in the 9th and 10th century layers – before the stone church of the Annunciation was erected on request of prince Mstislav the Great in 1103.
Kudryavtsev Andrey Alexeevich (Moscow, IA RAS), Andrienko Alexey Vladimirovich (Veliky Novgorod, NSUM)
Material culture of the north part of the Novgorod (Rurik) Gorodishche prior to the erection of the church of the Annunciation (from the materials of the archaeological research, 2016-2017)
During the architectural and archaeological research at the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche in 2016-2017, some undisturbed cultural strata dating back to the early history of the Novgorod (Rurik) Gorodishche were explored. Three stoves and a production facility were discovered, as well as a large collection of imported goods, weapons and numismatic materials. This information is quite sufficient for an overview of material culture of a military and administrative center that Gorodishche was before the building of the church in 1103.
Maligin Petr Dmitrievich (Tver, IA RAS)
On some features of the ceramics from the excavations of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
The paper focuses on chronological and morphological characteristics of the earthenware found in the peripheral part of Gorodishche, where a stone church was erected in early 12th century and later replaced with a new one in 14th century. The layers corresponding to these churches in the cultural stratum allow a clear distinction between 11th and 14th century ceramics, with their respective typical features. The older church’s numerous resonators contain an additional treasure trove of important information.
Сoffee break 14.00 – 15.00 Vdovichenko Marina Viktorovna (Moscow, IA RAS)
Foundations of the old church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche in the context of construction works in Novgorod and South Russia at the turn of the 12th century
The 2016-17 excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche 2016-2017 gave us an opportunity to explore the foundations of the 1103 church over a large area. Supplementing the data obtained during the excavation led by M.K. Karger, this new information invites a comparison between these foundations and understructures of Novgorod churches of the first half of 12th century, and the foundations of some south Russian buildings of late 11th century, which are presumably connected with the church at Gorodishche. The paper presents the results of such comparison.
Fomicheva Yulia Sergeevna(Moscow, NIITIAG)
Reconstructing the church of the Annunciation in its 12th century shape
A monument of early 12th century architecture, the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche, was fully unearthed during the 2016-17 excavation at the site now occupied by the 14th century church of the same name. Despite the varying levels of preservation of the church constructions, these discoveries allow us to retrace the planning structure and facades of the 1103 cathedral. Similar church buildings in Novgorod and Kiev can provide additional useful information.
Makarova Valeria Pavlovna (St.Petersburg, IHMC RAS)
12th century mosaic smalto from the excavation of the 1103 church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
Some mosaic tesserae were found during the excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche - one of the earliest monuments with a mosaic décor in its interior to be now located in Russian Federation. The church was embellished with mosaic in accordance with a technique imported from the Byzantine empire. The range of tesserae allows us to suggest that the décor was a geometrical ornament composed of pieces of smalto of four colors, like in the altar of Sophia of Novgorod and some other Old Russian churches.
Reshetova Irina Konstantinovna (Moscow, IA RAS)
A study of paleoanthropological materials from the excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
This paper presents preliminary results of studying the paleoanthropological materials found during the excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche. All in all, 26 burials were found in the area adjacent to the foundation and the church walls.
For each of them, the levels of preservation and completeness were assessed, and the remains were photographed, the individual features, sex and age identified, and the relevant measurements made. In accordance with the comprehensive study program, samples of bone and dental tissue were taken for the upcoming paleodietary study.
Results of the protective excavation around the сhurch of Annunciation by the IHMC RAS team in 2017
In 2017 a combined team from the Department of protective archaeology and the Novgorod regional expedition of the IHMC RAS continued archaeological work around the church of Annunciation at Gorodishche. The research was conducted at the northern wall of the church and at three trenches located in the area of external utilities. The main focus was made on the destroyed 12th century church and on a 14th century layer rich with fragments of old murals. The fieldwork allowed to locate the horizon of deterioration of the 1103 church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche - a layer of lime and tsemyanka mortar dated back to 1340s. While clearing this layer, a large collection of 12th century mural fragments was retrieved, as well as some remains of a few massive church wall blocks. Further clearing along the northern wall, the team recorded some features of the wall masonry and signs of deformation of the basement and foundation. While clearing mid-20th century objects at the southeastern corner of the church a fragment of an icon and a part of its setting was retrieved.
Popov Viktor Alexandrovich (Veliky Novgorod, NSUM)
The church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche, 12th - 14th centuries: implementing a conservation and museumification project
This paper covers two monuments of architecture existing on the same spot: the remains of the 1103 church and its successor, built in 1342-1343 and destroyed during the WWII, in 1941. We examine the stages of research and conservation work in the area from the 1960s to 2017, as well as their respective outcomes.
Anisimova Tamara Ivanovna (Veliky Novgorod, NSUM)
The renovation of the wall painting in the Church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche: preliminary outcomes
The project of conserving the ruins of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche included a range of archaeological works at the site. One of its tasks was to dismantle the bedding under the church floor and recover some fragments of 12th century wall painting. The task was found even more difficult after crushed pieces of such painting had been detected. To extract them, cyclododecane-based adhesive was used for the first time. This new method guarantees careful handling of the paint layer and facilitates further work with the mural. Renovators managed to gather a part of the mural from the south wall of the prothesis and a pilaster, and to get a basic grasp of the wall painting in the prothesis of this prince’s church.
Soboleva Olga Sergeevna (Veliky Novgorod, NSUM)
Museumification of the ruins of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche and the future use of the monument
Novgorod State United Museum has been working to conserve the ruins of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche since 2011, with support from the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation and the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development. After the installation of the glass panels to mark the interior of the 14th century church, the ruined monument will turn into a year-round exhibition venue. Among the potential exhibits is the foundation of the 1103 church unearthed during the excavation and a multimedia reconstruction of the history of Gorodishche residence of the princes of Novgorod.
10.00 Florya Boris Nikolayevich (Moscow, ISS RAS/ MSU)
The reign of Mstislav Vladimirovich in the history of the Novgorod Republic and society
The paper describes the circumstances of Mstislav Vladimirovich`s rise to power in Novgorod. It considers the areas where the interests of the prince coincided or diverged with those of Novgorod’s citizens. Mstislav's attempts to strengthen his stand in Novgorod, particularly with support from religious institutions, are also examined.
Nazarenko Alexander Vasilyevich (Moscow, IWH RAS / IRH RAS)
Religiosity in Mstislav the Great's family: Western and Eastern aspects of the princely church life
The religiosity of Mstislav Vladimirovich, Prince of Novgorod and later of Kiev, was undeniably profound. He alone built as many churches as all descendants of Yaroslav taken together. Both Russian and Western European sources tell of his numerous miraculous healings. In these accounts, the prince is always accompanied by a female figure - his English mother, Gytha of Wessex, daughter of the last Anglo-Saxon king Harold II. Her exceptional religious life, in particular, included extramural monasticism at St. Panteleimon Cathedral in Cologne and pilgrimage to Jerusalem during the First Crusade (!). The fact that the princess spent her last years with her son in Novgorod, rather than with her husband, Vladimir Monomakh, in Pereslavl, speaks of spiritual affinity between them. Commemoration of the Latin saints in the menelogy of Mstislav's Gospel is also most significant in this respect.
Litvina Anna Feliksovna (Moscow, HSE), Uspenskij Feodor Borisovich (ISS RAS / HSE)
Names and dates of Vsevolod (Gavriil) Mstislavich
The naming history of Mstislav the Great’s oldest son shows that at the turn of the 12th century Russia witnesses a rise of its proper devotional practices which were not fully aligned with the Byzantine traditions typical for the period. It can thus be assumed that at this point, a distinct commemorative cycle was taking shape in the form of a range of allowed and prohibited names, and specific dates to be used in reference to the events in people’s devotional lives.
Makarov Nikolay Andreevich (Moscow, IA RAS)
Christian repoussage of the Suzdal land as the source of the study of spread of Christianity and religious practices in the 11th and 12th centuries
Christian repoussage is one of the categories of medieval antiquities which account for a quickly rising number of finds, largely due to extensive archaeological fieldwork in Russia. The recent additions to collections of pectorals, engolpions and icons of the pre-Mongol period significantly broadens the potential of this category of finds as a source for studying the cultural situation of the 11th -13thcenturies, the spread of Christianity, religious practices of the Old Russia and the Russian-Byzantine communications.
One of the biggest collection of Christian repoussage of the 11th -13th centuries was obtained as a result of field work in the Suzdal Opolye in the recent decades. At the moment, the collection contains over 200 items, mainly pectoral crosses of the 11th -13th centuries. Taking into account the new finds, it would be correct to consider them the most massive group of items made of non-ferrous metals in central parts of north-western Russia in 12th and 13th centuries. This paper presents a number of observations on the dating and origin of some types of the pectorals and icons from the new Suzdal collection, with a special focus on 11th century finds, including some similar to those found in the Black Sea region and the Balkans. The presence of the pectorals with “a rough depiction of the Crucifixion” and pectorals of the “Scandinavian type” in large unfortified settlements of the Suzdal land in 10th and 11th centuries allows us to conclude that such settlements played an important part in the spread of Christian culture, also acting as centers of production of Christian repoussage.
On the history of the building and destruction of the oldest church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
During the excavation in the elevated part of Gorodishche an old moat was found to have surrounded the central part of the 9th -10th century settlement. Unearthing a large section of the moat showed that it was a significant construction, up to 4.3 meters deep (measured against the ground surface as it was at the time) and 27-28 meters wide. The fillup of the moat began as early as the 10th century, and by the end of the 11th it had been completely leveled.
The eastern third of the multi-ton princely cathedral was founded partly upon the filled-up moat, which sealed the fate of the church. The ground began to subside, and by the mid-14th century the church had been dismantled.
Grigoryeva Olga Vladimirovna (St. Petersburg, IHMC RAS)
The Old Russian elite housing complex by the princely church at Gorodishche near Novgorod: a planigraphic analysis
During the 2007-2009 expedition, the IHMC RAS team examined two buildings with cellars dating back to Old Russia and located next to the princely church within the residence of Novgorod princes at Gorodishche. Many luxury items were found in and between the foundation pits. The complexes date from the time when the first princely church was erected. Of special interest are the planigraphic analysis data showing that the space between the pits has high concentration of luxury items, located in a way which suggests the presence of another construction (not inground). We can thus assume that all of these buildings were in fact parts of a single compound, with members of Old Russian elite as its residents.
Sterligova Irina Anatolyevna (Moscow, MSMK)
Gold warrior’s bracelet from the 1841 Kiev treasure contemporaneous with the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche
For many years, researchers have known about this massive twisted bracelet with dragon heads at each end only from imperfect replicas. Archival research helped identify it with a bracelet currently in the collections of the Museums of Moscow Kremlin. This remarkable sample of late Viking military culture, the biggest gold warrior’s bracelet presently known, adds to our knowledge of the princely jewelry contemporaneous with the church of Annunciation at Gorodishche.
Lopatin Nikolai Vladimirovich (Moscow, IA RAS)
Was the Izborsk stone fortress built in the reign of Mstislav the Great or Yaroslav the Wise?
According to V. V. Sedov's findings, the stone fortress at Truvor’s Gorodishche was erected in 12th century, but this dating is not totally indisputable and requires additional research. The chronology of the oldest stone fortifications in Izborsk should be analyzed with regard to the development of architectural traditions in northwest Russia and adjacent territories, and in connection with another element of Izborsk fortification - the wooden stockade around the detinets. Compared to the Ladoga fortress (1114), the one in Izborsk is more archaic and more similar to a fortification at Lyubsha Gorodishche and Estonian hillforts of late Iron Age. Having compared the layout of stone and wooden fortifications in Izborsk, we can conclude that the latter were built inside the former, and consequently the stone fortification must be older. Most likely, the stone and wooden walls coexisted at the time of Yaroslav the Wise’s rule in Novgorod.
Medvedeva Maria Vladimirovna (St. Petersburg, IHMC RAS), Sedov Vladimir Valentinovich (Moscow, IA RAS)
Church of Annunciation at Gorodishche in archival collections of the IHMC RAS
In 1876, the first to draw the attention of the academic community to the issue of preservation of the church of Annunciation at Gorodishche in Novgorod were archeologist Prince P. A. Putyatin and artist F. I. Bratski. Over a period of time, a number of architects, art critics, archaeologists, historians and even grand princes of Russian empire visited the site and took photos of it. In 1930s the church became an object of study for the Novgorod expedition of SAHMC (State Academy of History of Material Culture) led by the historian of architecture and archaeologist M. K. Karger. He also led the first restoration attempt there in 1960s. The IHMC RAS archives preserve photos, descriptions, the 1885 file on the church, field reports made by the Novgorod expedition and a plethora of other research materials. In this paper, we offer an overview of these sources.
Сoffee break 14.00 – 15.00
Etingof Olga Evgenyevna (Moscow, RI RAA / Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities, RSUH)
12th century frescos in the Novgorod church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche (finds of 2016-2017)
During the excavation of the church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche in 2016-2017, many fragments of frescoes dating back to early 12th century were found, featuring ornaments and faces. Those fragments indicate that the wall painting was done in a high aristocratic style, which must have corresponded with the prince’s order. The painters’ use of the techniques typical for 1080-1090s may indicate that the team who worked in the church learned from the Constantinople craftsmen, who arrived at Kiev-Pechersk Lavra in 1080s, according to the Kiev-Pechersk paterikon.
Smirnova Engelina Sergeevna (Moscow, MSU)
On the links between the church of Annunciation at Gorodishche and the Yuriev Monastery in iconography and book miniature
The paper focuses on two subjects:
1. The image of Annunciation, kept at St. George’s Cathedral of the Yuriev Monastery around 1030(?), was removed to Moscow during the reign of Ivan the Terrible (and is now part of the collections of the State Tretyakov Gallery). Since we do not know of any side altar at St. George’s dedicated to the Annunciation, we must assume that this icon was originally related to the princely Church of Annunciation, which was situated on the other bank of the Volkhov River. Initially both icons could have been of the same height and adorned the rood screen of St. George’s, which – just as the church of Annunciation – enjoyed the princely protection . Another pair of Novgorod churches situated far from each other but united by commemoration of the same image is known - St. Nicholas’ on Lipno Island and St. Nicholas’ at the Yaroslav’s Court. In their case, the altars were similarly dedicated.
2. The Gospel of 1270 (RSL, Рум.105) was commissioned by Simon, a monk of the Yuriev Monastery, and the scribe was Georgiy, son of a priest from the church at Gorodishche. Unique miniatures of this Gospel resemble two Novgorod icons with red background: "Savior on the throne with the saints interceding" (State Tretyakov Gallery) and "Saint John Climacus with Sts. George and Blaise" (State Russian Museum). As lettering of the inscriptions is also similar, we can safely assume that both the manuscript and the icons came from a workshop which had links to both the church of Annunciation and the Yuriev Monastery.
Ukhanova Elena Vladimirovna (Moscow, SHM)
Concerning the influence of Mstislav the Great’s ceremonial manuscripts on the development of Novgorod book culture
Two altar Gospels – the Mstislav Gospel (1103-1113), made for the princely church of Annunciation at Gorodishche, and the Yuriev Gospel (about 1120), made for the Yuriev Monastery – were commissioned by the same prince, Mstislav the Great, and copied by the same Kiev scribes. Nevertheless, their different status can explain their different impact on Novgorod book production. The Mstislav Gospel was preserved at his palace and was thus not available for copy, while the Yuriev Gospel was intended, among other things, for use as a collection of ornament samples for one of the city’s earliest scriptoria.
Torshin Evgeni Nikolayevich (Saint Petersburg, SHM)
The Cathedral of Holy Wisdom in Polotsk and the rise of the local monumental church building
The Cathedral of Holy Wisdom in Polotsk is usually examined alongside with the Holy Wisdom Cathedrals (St. Sophia) of Kiev and Novgorod. In the paper, we present the Polotsk cathedral as a building related to a later Kiev architecture (1070s and after). The paper describes the constructional, technical and architectural features of this building, also typical of the other Polotsk constructions. All of these allows us to consider the Cathedral of Holy Wisdom the earliest example of local monumental churchbuilding in Polotsk.
Zykov Petr Leonidovich (St. Petersburg, SHM).
Replicas of the Assumption Cathedral of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra in northeastern Russia in 12th century
Monumental construction in the northeast of Russia began at the turn of the 12th century, as attested by the Kiev-Pechersk paterikon. This source also says that churches in Suzdal and Ryazan were modeled after the Cathedral at the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra. Studies made in the 1990s added to our knowledge of construction history of these two monuments and proved right the theory (earlier considered dubious) that their layout was identical with that of the Cathedral in the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra.
Yolshin Denis Dmitrievich (St. Petersburg, SHM)
New centres of plinth brick-making in old Russia at the turn of the 12th century: the continuity in the production technique
In late 11th and early 12th centuries monumental construction was on the rise in the ever bigger number of old Russian towns. Pereyaslavl Yuzhny and Veliky Novgorod developed their own schools of architecture arise, while Suzdal and Smolensk witness the construction of large stone-and-brick churches. This paper examines the correlation between the techniques in the production of plinth bricks in these new centers and the traditional construction hubs of the 11th century, Kiev and Chernigov. A special focus is made on the peculiarities of plinth bricks used in the construction of church of the Annunciation at Gorodishche near Novgorod.
Zherve Alexey Vladimirovich (St. Petersburg, SMHR).
Glazed ceramic tiles from the excavation of the Annunciation church at Gorodishche
Glazed ceramic tiles were found during the church excavation led by M. K. Karger in 1960s. However, neither then, nor during subsequent work on the site led by V. V. Sedov in 2000s and 2010s, no fragments of the floors with tiles in situ have been found. The paper examines the collection of glazed ceramic tiles from the Annunciation church kept at the Novgorod State United Museum-Reserve (NSUM), and attempts to describe asynchronous stages of church decoration, relying on the methodologies of technical and technological analysis.
Antipov Ilya Vladimirovich (Saint Petersburg, SPbU)
The problem of reconstruction of the top of 1342-1343 church of Annunciation at Gorodishche
The 15th century church of Annunciation lost its original top, with only some remains of arches and domes discovered during the field studies. According to L. E. Krasnorechyev, the church had a sсalariform system of arches and domes, and also separate roofing for each arched gable. G. M. Shtender assumed that the church’s tholobate could have rested on a plinth, perhaps decorated with kokoshniks. This paper discusses the existing reconstructions, attempting to assess their degree of their substantiation and to select the most authentic reconstruction.