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Touch the Clay

Touch the Clay
Trnava and the adjacent areas rank among the historically most famous brickmaking centres in Slovakia, surely because good clay was easily accessible here. Had it not been for the clay, the architectural panorama of Trnava would be all the poorer, lacking the unique brick city walls as well as the characteristic outlines of certain churches. The exhibition follows the history of brickmaking, going back to the Roman Empire, throughout the Middle Ages until the Modern Era. It is in particular Gothic bricks that are on display, as well as branded bricks, bearing either the initials of the manufacturer or the purchaser who commissioned the construction. Beyond Trnava’s east city walls a number of individual brickfields existed side by side. Even though residential areas nowadays define the image of the neighbourhood, the terrain bears testimony to clay pits of old, as do local names such as Kopánka (“Digville”), Na hlinách (“On the Brickfield”), V jame (“In the Hole”), Tehelná (“Brick Street”), and Hlboká (“Deep Street”).