3000-years-old settlement and burial site discovered

Archaeologists working a construction site of a high-pressure gas pipeline near Sulmierzyce, West Poland, discovered a settlement and burial site of the Lusitian culture, dating back the Early and Middle Bronze Age (1300-900 BC).

Details of a Lusatian culture grave (by Wiesław Zdobylak)

The settlement site, named Gołkowo 2 is located on the right bank of the Czarna Woda river, at a small hill. Nearly 1200 metres away, a burial ground was discovered, named Latkowa 1, containing hundreds of artefacts, such as cremation urns, and pottery vessels with grave good for the deceased. Moreover, numerous human bones were also found. Both sites are located only a couple hundred metres away from Sulmierzyce, and less than a hundred metres from Gołkowo. A border between Polish voivodeships runs between them. Both sites are connected with the Lusatian culture in most of today’s Poland, parts of the Czech Republic and Slovakia, parts of eastern Germany and parts of Ukraine in the later Bronze Age and Early Iron Age.

Overview of the site with discovered features prior to their excavation (by Wiesław Zdobylak)
Area already excavated by archaeologists (by Wiesław Zdobylak)

Archaeological fieldwork at the site started with a ground survey on the whole course of the planned pipeline. Archaeologists walked through the whole course marking areas where potential archaeological sites could be located, basing on the surface finds. After removal of the topsoil a couple dozens of archaeological features were revealed, including the largest settlement and burial sites in the area, but also sites dated to the Roman period, connected with the Iron Age Przeworsk culture, and dating back to Early Medieval, and Modern times.

Archaeologist at work at the site (by Wiesław Zdobylak)
Hearth used for manufacture of pottery vessels (by Wiesław Zdobylak)

Archaeological work did not halt the construction as the workers have been moved to different areas. The researchers excavated the settlement site revealing outlines of houses, dugouts, hearths, including ones used for pottery production, and pits where burnt clay was stored. Archaeologists state that it was possible to register fragments of fences and fortifications in form of holes left by pillars.

Grave with urns (by Wiesław Zdobylak)

The researchers discovered numerous pieces of pottery vessels within the area of the settlement. The shards once formed vessels such as vases, pots, bowls, and plates. Finds from the neighbouring burial ground are said to have been much more impressive, consisting of valuable artefacts such as cremation urns and grave goods.

Grave with urns found at the site (by Wiesław Zdobylak)

(after Nasze Miasto Krotoszyn & Wiesław Zdobylak)

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