The majestic burial mound Chorna Mohyla is located near Yeletskyi monastery in Chernihiv. It is one of the biggest Old Russian barrows of the 10th century which has remained till now.
The legend tells that there lies prince Chornyi, who was the founder of the town and gave it his name.
The proportions of the barrow are impressive: the diameter is 40 m, circumference is 125 m, the present height is 11 m. In the past it was moated with the ditch 7 m wide. In 1872-1873 the mound was explored by famous native Chernihiv archeologist Dmytro Yakovych Samokvasov.
A man and a woman were buried in the mound according to the cremation ceremony. They were buried in complete ammunition and occupied the middle part of the bonfire site. Near the man there were some arms ─ two swords, a sable, a spear, a saddle with stirrups, some shreds of hauberk, a helmet, arrowheads, and a shield with copper binding at the feet. Near the arms there was an iron vessel with sheep bones and bronze brazier with coals. By the feet of the buried man two saddled horses were lain. Among the things connected with the woman there were ten sickles by the feet. There were twelve buckets staying semicircle in the western part of the bonfire site, but only iron binding and two iron vessels remained. A lot of jewelry, belt tips, gold and silver ingots ─ remains of melted in the fire jewelry, a bronze vessel with knucklebones ─ dice, keys, locks, axes, chisels were found where the deceased were lain.
The primary burial mound was 7 m, then there was a funeral feast ─ competition in honour of the dead person after which the barrow poured over. At the funeral feast place two richly ornamented drinking horns, made out of aurochs horns with silver binding were found. The most interesting is the binding of the bigger horn with marvelous frieze, where fabulous beasts, birds and people are depicted. In addition two reaping knives and a bronze vanity of Scandinavian god Thor were found at the funeral feast. These finds are considered as donations which satisfied the status of the dead during his life. In the mound three Byzantine coins, the earliest one of which was minted in 945-959 years by Kostyantyn the VII, called Porphyrogenitus and his son Vasyliy, were found. According to this coin the mound is dated to 960s — prince Svyatoslav epoch.
Most of the Chorna Mohyla finds are kept at Moscow historical museum. The part of exhibits which was given by D. Samokvasov to Kyiv University museum and to someprivate collections was lost.