A unique collection in Romania, from the time when Transylvania was under water

We are too busy to think about the past. We are too busy to admire what’s around us. Every day we pass buildings in downtown Cluj, some architectural treasures, and ignore them. We do not steal enough time to simply sit and admire our monumental heritage.

And if we think even further into the past … For example, how many of you knew that, in prehistoric times, the place which today lies our town was occupied by a sea? In other words, several million years ago, Cluj was underwater.

The Transylvanian Basin is a sedimentary basin was formed by a slow and continuous sinking (subsidence) taking such great continental rise, which had no direct connection with the oceans and seas around the existing Eurasian continent. The thickness of sedimentary deposits in the basin exceeds 5000 m, and studying them helps us shape a more accurate picture of Transylvania’s distant past, divided into three distinct periods, depending on the period in which sediments were deposited: the Upper Cretaceous period ( 65 million years ago), the Paleocene period (65 to 23.8 million years ago) and the Neogene period (23.8 to 12 million years ago).

The Transilvanian Basin Collection at the Museum of Palaeontology-Stratigraphy
The Stratigraphic-Paleontological Collection of the Transylvanian Basin is unique in Romania and illustrates the geological evolution of the basin over several million years. The paleontological collection includes invertebrates, vertebrates and plant fossils from the Paleogene and Neogene deposits of the Transylvanian Basin. The exhibits also collected fossils from Cretaceous deposits developed on the northwestern border of the Transylvanian Basin. These fossil species inhabited the warm sea waters in the late Cretaceous, after 65 million years and contain a mollusc fauna fossils exclusively represented by cephalopode (ammonites, belemnites) and bivalve (rudisti, inocerami).

You can discover the secret of Cluj Museum of Paleontology-Stratigraphy on the premises of Babes-Bolyai, Mihai Kogalniceanu Street, No. 1.