Study Years: Vytautas Magnus University, Vilnius University

An ability to painstakingly collect materials on a selected topic, and to find clear classification criteria for their analysis resulted in that her 250-page master’s thesis, “Modes of Burial in Lithuania in the Iron Age”, earned a particularly favorable evaluation by all the professors at the Vilnius University’s Faculty of Humanities. Some saw in her an archaeologist, others perceived “a restorer of the religion of our forebears”.
Interpreting materials from prehistoric Lithuania, she managed to use such historical sources as The History of Poland and Scriptores Rerum Prussicarum by Jan Długosz, The Livonian Chronicle and The Treaty of Christburg by Henry of Latvia, as well as collections of Lithuanian folklore written down by Jonas Basanavičius, Antanas Juška and Vilius Kalvaitis, and collections of Latvian folk songs.  This enabled her to develop parts of her thesis into individual research publications: Kapų tipai Lietuvoje priešistoriniais laikais (Types of Burials in Lithuania in Prehistoric Times), Pomirtinio gyvenimo įsivaizdavimas proistoriniais laikais Lietuvoje (Notions of the Afterlife in Prehistoric Times in Lithuania).

Adomas Butrimas
(After: Butrimas, Adomas. Marija Alseikaitė-Gimbutienė – baltų archeologijos tyrėja (Marija Alseikaitė-Gimbutas, a Researcher in Baltic Archaeology). Lituanistica, 2012, t. 58, nr. 1 (87), p. 4)

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