The work is a part of the Bilyar agglomeration research project.
The project is helmed by Associate Professor Svetlana Valiulina (Department of Archeology and Ethnology) who recently obtained a Russian Foundation for Basic Research grant. Five more employees of different institutes of KFU are her colleagues.
The main sites researched by the group are a pottery, an alchemy workshop, a jewelry shop and a glass blowing shop. Their location gave way to a hypothesis that this was actually a royal courtyard trade – the workshops were located in the center of ancient Bilyar near the main mosque and the central market.
Research summary confirms the continuity of local communities since the Mongol invasion of 1236. Development of Bilyar was uninterrupted in 11th – 15th centuries and led to the city acquiring a significant status within the state.
Dr. Valiulina says that the alchemy workshop is the only one in Russia and the earliest known in Europe. Findings of silica refractories are of special importance – the materials are unique in the world.
The project is unique in its fundamental unified approach to chemical and physical research of trade products, slags, ore materials, ceramics, refractories, and alloys.
The results have been presented at international conferences and in publications.
The research creates foundations for future work and will also be used in the studying process.