The article describes a “hoard” found in Western Siberia consisting of imported medieval silver and local bronze artifacts dating to the period from the fi rst centuries AD to the 13th–14th cent. The presence of subsequent engravings and additional holes suggests that the objects were used in ritual. The “hoard” was discovered at the site of an ancient fortifi ed settlement at the mouth of the Yalbynya River in the northern Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District. The river basin represents Mansi sacred land. Archaeological sources are discussed with special reference to Northern Mansi mythological beliefs. The Yalbynya basin was inhabited as early as the fi rst centuries AD. Metal artifacts and fragments of ceramics found at the site may have been mythologically reinterpreted by the later Khanty and Mansi population. The “hoard” contains ritual objects which indicates that a sanctuary existed nearby.
Keywords: Ob Ugrians, Mansi, Khanty, bronze, sanctuary, hoard, myths.