Prehistoric finds at the seat of Poland’s Medieval kings

Excavations carried out prior to construction of a server room at Wawel Royal Castle in Kraków, South Poland, lead to discovery of Prehistoric artefacts, pre-dating the construction of the Polish kings’ seat.

Site of excavations (by Anna Kaczmarz)

The site of excavations was located in the basement of the building no 9, a former Austrian hospital, dating to 19th century. Archaeologists lead by Andrzej Kukliński reached the depth of around 1-1.5 metres below the room’s floor. As the basement will house a server room, the space of the trenches will be filled with computer hardware. Preparing the basement, the archaeologists were allowed to investigate traces of the oldest phase of settlement at the Wawel Hill.

A metal artefact, possibly a belt buckle (by Anna Kaczmarz)

The researchers reached the limestone bedrock at the bottom of their trench, registering along their investigation a layer of original Prehistoric topsoil within which remains of hearths were found. These remains had the form of pieces of charcoal, ash, pottery vessel fragments, and animal bones. It is believed that these hearths were used for meal preparation. The artefacts date the archaeological features to the period between 9-10th centuries AD, when a possible fortified settlement existed on the site. The pottery is of the so-called white pottery type as the clay used for their creation was mixed with limestone present in abundance in the region. Archaeologists also managed to discover a bit younger features, in form of remains of stone structures, possibly used for mounting wooden pillars. On top of that layer an even younger, dating to the 11th century was discovered, linked by the researchers with preparation of the area for construction of new fortifications.

Bones found by archaeologists (by Anna Kaczmarz)

(after Anna Kaczmarz & Dziennik Polski)

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