20 November 2016

TRĂISTENI, Prahova County, the XIXth Century

An ancient Prahova settlement, the village of Trăisteni is documented ever since the year 1605 when Radu Șerban, the ruler of the Romanian Country (Romanian: „Țara Românească”) provides his hereditary land in Trestieni with an irrigation canal. The village is situated between the waters of Prahova and Teleajen, surrounded by the mountains of Negraș, Prislopul Mic and Fundurile. The households are scattered along the three river streams – Doftana, Negraș and Prislop. Occupations that engaged the residents were livestock breeding, lumberjacking, the transportation of goods (Romanian: „cărăușie”), the domestic textile business, and to some extent, agriculture and pomiculture.

The household, brought on Museum premises in 1936, representative for the style of the XIXth century, features the house itself and one annex building: the pig and poultry pen. Built on a tall rock base, the beech wood log house is notched „sheepfold style”. The walls are glued and painted with whitewash. The hipped-roof is covered with shingles laid using the „cioc and scoc” technique. Surrounding the house on two sides, a fretted balustrade with a gazebo is set assimetrically, covered with an individual cross-gabled roof. The gazebo shelters the cellar door, which occupies the space underneath the gazebo and the living room.

A richly carved and fretted décor is exhibited all along the façade (porch balustrade, gazebo and pillars). The house plan features two rooms set on opposite sides of the vestibule. The elegantly shaped brick stoves welcome the visitor, one with a hotplate, in the living room, the other one with an alcove and a recess, in the guest room. The main furniture pieces – beds, tables, chairs, hangers, chests – are crafted by local masters, with ingenious compositions and impressive shapes, an interior setting pleasing to the eye.

The majority of display pieces are adorned with etched geometric motifs, either carved or sculpted. The Prahova interior is specific on account of the scarves and cotton kerchiefs, embroidered with red and black loose cotton in a myriad of decorative compositions. The pieces form – the wheel of the house – on display around the walls, closest to the ceiling. The woolen garments – rugs and carpets (Romanian: „țoluri și velințe”) – are executed using a lively pallette of colours.