One of the oldest gallows to be ever discovered in Poland

Archaeologists from University of Wrocław discovered the remains of gallows during excavations on the Mieszczańska Mountain in Złotoryja, South-west Poland. The remains of the gallows are believed to be the largest of so far documented brick structures of this kind in the region of Silesia. The foundation are in form of a circle of 7.65 metre in diameter.

Gallows in Złotoryja (by Maksym Mackiewicz)
Gallows in Złotoryja (by Maksym Mackiewicz)

The hill on which it was discovered was initially called “Gallows hill” (Galgenberg) but within a few years of the gallows’ deconstruction in 1810 the place was renamed to “Mieszczańska” or “Townsman” hill (Buergenberg). The area was planted over with trees and survived in such state to this day.

Chain (by Maksym Mackiewicz)
Chain (by Maksym Mackiewicz)

In the vicinity of the foundations a complete execution chain was found. It might have been used to expose the corpses of the executed people, which – as the archive information tell – could be hanged for up to two years. Within the foundations single human bones, including a mandible,  were found. Among other artefacts buttons or clay smoking-pipe fragments were discovered. A complete skeleton of a dog was also found nearby, as the executioner was also the local dog-catcher and catching stray dogs was one of his duties.

Dog bones (by Paweł Duma)
Dog bones (by Paweł Duma)

The archaeologists suppose (based on pottery shard finds) that the gallows might have been constructed in 16th century. It is believed that over 30 executions were performed at the site.

Dog bones (by Paweł Duma)
Dog bones (by Paweł Duma)

(after Nauka w Polsce, Maksym Mackiewicz, Paweł Duma & TVN24)

2 Comments


  1. // Reply

    Do you know if it will be reconstructed? It would be great! Is there any cemetery nearby? Frankly speaking I don’t know much about Polish archaeology. I’m lucky to find your site! Greetings from GB


    1. // Reply

      Greetings. Probably not, but who knows. Keep on following our site and we shall report if there are any new facts. Cheers.

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