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The small Riga River wound like a narrow ribon along marshes and sands and flowed into the Daugava River. Near the river's bend a settlement of Liv merchants and craftsmen was located (in the area of present day Audeju and Kaleju streets in Old Town of Riga). They used to build low houses made of pine or fir logs with straw or reed roofs and basements made of boulders os oak-wood wells. They worked in smithies, built vessels, traded at the Market Square. Foreign merchants who travelled by the Daugava River were frequent visitors there.

A little bit further, close to the Daugava, the second Liv settlement appeared - the fishermen's one (in the area of Marstalu and Brivibas streets). These two settlements were connected with castles of Livs and Latgals and settlements of craftsmen situeted at the second most important river - the Gauja - by the only ground road - the Sand Road. It followed the path of present-day Brivibas street and turned to Liv settlement near the Powder Tower.

In spring 1200 Pope in his bull declared crusade against Livonia peoples. From that time more and more often foreign ships arrived to the harbour on the Riga River - not with goods but with armoured knights. At last bishop Albert arrived - with knights and squadron of 23 ships. for the whole summer they negotiated with local elders and examined the harbour.

And on one autumn day guets arrived to bishop Albert. They were chiefs of Livs from castles upon the Daugava River and Turaida region who had been christened. When the feast was at its peak the bishop secretly ordered to close all the outer doors and windows. After that he declared to the invited that they were his captives and unless they yielded to his will they would be shackled and sent to exile. And bishop Albert demanded the land near Riga settlements to be given to him and his people. Having received the promise bishop set chiefs of Livs free. But he took thirty sons of the chiefs as hostages and brought them to Germany. That was how the building of Riga had been started.

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  • Riga's Castle
  • Orthodox church
  • Beautiful Riga
  • Beautiful Riga
  • There are a lot of interesting buildings in Riga.
  • Riga
  • Riga
  • Riga
  • Don't forget to adventure around outside of Riga. There are many beautiful and interesting places out of Riga.
  • Suspension Bridge
  • Opera House
  • Over Daugava
  • Rail Bridge
  • Riga's theater

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