Bronze objects

The bronze items discovered in the Dacian settlements from the Orăștie Mountains impress both by their quantity and by the quality of craftsmanship, revealing the high level of technical knowledge, combined with artistic sense and refinement, held by the masters who made them. At the same time, they indicate the existence of clients who desired such objects and show the taste of Dacians for certain categories of trendy products. In this context, these are the evidence for a series of activities and practices, quite often going beyond the ordinary sphere.

Bronze objects Whether we refer to the furniture items, those for lighting (lamps), the measurement and marking instruments, or the bronze bowls found here, the overall image is that of an environment that had close connections with the Roman Empire. Thus, in the period between the 1st century AD and the Roman conquest, bronze objects made in some workshops that operated in the Italian Peninsula (Campania – Capua, Aquileia) and in the province of Gallia (after the middle of the 1st century AD) reach the Orăștie Mountains as result of the existent commercial relations and of some individual experiences or contacts. They illustrate the skill of processing bronze and the elegance typical for the Italian workshops in this timeframe, when this type of objects were blending both the aesthetic and the functional valences in a balance that will be seldom reached subsequently, in the context of generalized series mass production.

Regarded from the perspective of their use, the bronze bowls discovered in this region were related in their majority to the services used for the preparation and serving of drinks. Among these, stand out the bowls used for mixing wine (various types of buckets from the late Republican period, casseroles, the exceptional presence of a handle that comes from a bronze krater in the fortress from Costești) and those for serving (various types of jugs). They are joined by the large sized basins that appear in this environment starting with the Augustus period and which were used as part of the services for washing or as bowls to mix the drinks in the regions outside the borders of the Roman Empire.  

Besides their intrinsic value, offered by the material of which they were made, to which adds the quality of the technical and artistic workmanship, they hide, most likely, a series of gestures and actions with a strong symbolical load. Often, these bronze items played a significant role in the affirmation and confirmation of the status and prestige of Dacian elites from the region. Certainly some of them, like the krater from Costești or the lamp from Luncani – Piatra Roșie, must have been used in majestic settings that undoubtedly characterized the Dacian habitation from the Orăștie Mountains.