BLACK KITCHEN AT ŠUMEJ

The Šumej homestead in Brdce nad Dobrno is one of the few smaller farms in the area of the municipality, which to this day has preserved a part of the architectural and cultural heritage of our ancestors. The oldest part of the homestead is the black (open-hearth) kitchen, which is corroborated by the small window in the chimney part of the kitchen and the details of wooden hinges on the entrance doors. When you enter the house, it seems as if the time has stood still; we can experience the way life was three hundred years ago.

In the past, a black kitchen cottage was the only residential part of the farm, and the central part was a fireplace with a stove, a house and a barn.

At the entrance to the house, we first feel the smell of smoke that rolls around the room; the floors which we step on are wooden. Once the eyes adjust to the darkness and smoke, we enter a modest kitchen, the most important space in the house. Warm fireplace, iron and earthenware, coffee substitutes on the shelf next to the fireplace, pots with different ingredients and spices, and straw basket for dried fruit are some of the hallmarks of this kitchen. The walls and ceilings glisten from the soot deposited over the centuries and forming charcoal stalactites. The spider has made a web in the corner, turned to coal due to smoke.

The room, called the house, in which they once used to work, sleep, eat, drink, cry, rejoice and mourn, is fitted with an old bench and table; on the walls hang pictures with religious motives, and their frames tell how old they are. The scents, old containers, windows, cupboards and an old tiled stove, in which a fire can still be lit, testify to the way of living and modesty of the life of former peasants.

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