Anuarul Muzeului Etnografic al Moldovei – XI / 2011


The craft of pottery is deeply rooted in the prehistory of our people. Its evolution on the territory of Bessarabia for six-seven millennia fully confirms the fact that the contemporary folk ceramics of the Republic of Moldova illustrates the continuation of the tradition of the Dacian ceramicware by its black pottery, of the Roman one by the unpolished red pottery and of the Byzantine one by the enameled pottery. Traces of four ancient rural pottery centers of the 15th-16th centuries can still be identified nowadays in the villages of Cenişeuţi (Rezina district),  Tigăneşti (Străşeni district), Hogineşti (Călăraşi district) and Iurceni in Nisporeni district.

Poorly investigated and insufficiently described by specialists, they continue to be a living proof of the continuity and perpetuation of our people’s culture in these lands. The paper is a short chronicle of the pottery center of Iurceni, with a special focus on its evolution during the last seven-eight decades. This period marked the continuous and dramatic decay of pottery mainly due to the great socio-economical changes in the life of the community, and also of the country and the world. During the socialist period, traditional crafts were perceived only as a rudiment which was to disappear as soon as possible. Although nowadays society has overcome such damaging mentality, there remain like a consequence serious problems pertaining to the conservation and efficient valorization of the ceramic tradition of Iurceni. Finding solutions to such problems is a serious task also for the other ancient pottery centers of the Republic of Moldova.