Sacrifice caves chosen as archaeology monument of 2023

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The cultural monument of State importance, “Livonian Sacrifice Caves” near Svētupe (Sacred River), was selected as the archaeological monument 2023, said the Latvian Association of Archaeologists.

In 2001, the caves were also included in the list of protected geological and geomorphological natural monuments.

The archaeological monument has been selected in order to draw attention to the protection of the archaeological and natural heritage of Latvia and the variety of protected objects.

The Association said: “This year is special not only due to the fact that, exactly 50 years ago, the archaeological exploration of the Svētupe River under the leadership of the archaeologist Juris Urtāns was carried out, but also because 2023 was selected as the Livonian Heritage Year [..] It is important to note, in the context of the preservation of the cultural heritage, that in Latvia, sacrifice caves has been identified only on the banks of the rivers Svētupe, Salaca, Gauja and Īģe, and that there is a unique indication of the ancient sacrality the Livonian culture."

This year, it is planned to bring out the topic of sacrifice caves as a specific group of archaeological and natural monuments, which, due to their small number and fragility, demand the understanding of society at both individual and local government and national level, extending perceptions not only as a tourism resource, but cultural and historical in terms of heritage and natural values, noted the association.

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