20 November 2016

Hutsul household with fortified enclosure, 19th century

Located in the helmet from Răchitiş Hill, at 1200 m altitude, Breaza Commune, the household bought by the National Village Museum belonged to a Hutsul family and is specific to the settlements scattered on the heights. Although in Breaza lived a Romanian population, the village history is also related to Hutsuls settling in this area. The household with fortified enclosure that belonged to the Hutsul Procopiuc, was built at the end of the 19th century and was modified and improved in time: interior and exterior house wall plastering, replacements of the archaic heating and cooking systems, with open fireplaces, with brick masonry stoves with chimneys, the extension of the stable, etc.

The inhabitable house, with ridged roof and walls made of wood beams placed in horizontal crowns, plastered and whitewashed on the outside and the inside, has a plan that comprises the closed partial stoop, the living room, the “clean” room and the pantry. Inside the house there is wooden furniture specific to the 20th century and an abundance of textiles, counterpanes, carpets, kerchiefs placed on the walls.

The animal husbandry, as main occupation, is illustrated by the stable dimensions (over 14 meters long) and the wide loft used for fodder storage. The cattle and horse stable has two compartments, having at the ends the calf pound and the sheep pound, with an enclosure. The household plan is completed by a shed for wood and a shed for the sledge (“sanceu”), the chariot, the plough and, possibly, the sleigh. On both short sides of the house there is a barn – as the Bukovinans call it – for storing tools and fire wood. The area-specific fountain is in the middle of the yard. The isolation and the distance from other households, as well as the presence of wild animals in the surrounding forests lead to the establishment of households with yards closed on all sides that have the characteristics of an enclosure with a wooden fence and two entries.