Hillfort No. 1, Gnojna
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl
photo

The low-land, conical hillfort in the village of Gnojna (formerly Zielonkowice, Sieroniowice) is located in the area of the Silesian Cutting (Pol. Przesieka Śląska), by the so-called Potters’ Way (Droga Garncarzy).

Location and description

The hillfort sits in a large forest complex extending between the villages of Gnojna and Jeszkotle, about 550 m south of the hamlet and farm Zielonkowice, on the east side of a forest tract.

The hillfort comprises the fort proper and the ancillary settlement (outfort). The whole complex is on a square plan with rounded corners measuring approximately 70x115 m. The first element of the site is a flat cone located in the south part of the fort area. Its dimensions are about 25x26 m at the base, and it rises about 3-4 m above the bottom of the moat. The cone is surrounded by a moat about 6-10 m in width. It is filled with water. Probably, it played the role of the inner yard. The other element is the “outfort” - quadrangular in shape and enclosed with a double rampart and moat from the west, east and north. The cone and the above-mentioned ramparts and of the outfort are surrounded by a third, external rampart . At the inner yard on the east side where the passage is visible, there is a small cone measuring 8-10 m and rising up to 1.5 m in height. Perhaps, it is a remnant of the entry road to the fort proper. On the west side, there is a discernible entrance to the “outfort.” It is hard to determine whether these elements are historical or contemporary. Today, the entire complex can be clearly distinguished against the surrounding area - it is overgrown with trees and shrubs and often flooded in srping.

History

The survey examination demonstrated that the site was in use at the end of the 13th century and in the 14th century. However, they failed to determine the function of the settlement.

Condition and results of archaeological research

The hillfort has been known to the local historians and archaeologists since the late 19th century. The first study was made by O. Vug. He referred to the site as “Keller.” According to the information he held, in the 19th century, a deep pit was dug on the inner yard to extract stone for the construction of the nearby manor estate. It was repeatedly inspected and surface-checked in the interwar period. Survey examination was carried out in 1972 and 1977 by J. Lodowki and Z. Bagniewski, respectively. The researchers found numerous fragments of mediaeval dishes (14th century). Surface verification projects in 1989, 2003 and 2008 were supervised by K. Spychała. The state of conservation of the fort is satisfactory. In 2008, a contour plan was drawn up.

Itis still not know whether the site is a fort with an outfort and a seat the local lord, or one of the settlements of Opolanie or Ślężanie. It is certainly a guarded site on the west edge of the so-called Silesian Cutting.

The fort sits on an area owned by the State Forests. It is situated close to the local road from Grodków to Strzelin via Gnojna. Access is possible from the Zielonkowice farm by walking south, first through a field road and then through a forest path, from where the site is very well visible.

Compiled by Krzysztof Spychała, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Opole, 13-12-2014.

Bibliografia

  • Vug O., Schlesische Heidenschanzen ihre Erbauer und die Handelstrassen der Alten, 1890, s.99, ryc.23;
  • Kaźmierczyk J., Macewicz K., Wuszkan S., Studia i materiały do osadnictwa Opolszczyzny wczesnośredniowiecznej, 1977, s.137-139;
  • Bagniewski Z., Zielonkowice, gm. Grodków, Stan.1. Grodzisko, [w:] Opolski Informator Konserwatorski Nr 2, 1983, s.107-109;
  • Archiwum Wojewódzkiego Urzędu Ochrony Zabytków w Opolu teczka nr A-386/74 oraz Karta Ewidencji Stanowiska Archeologicznego Gnojna nr 1, AZP 88-31/1;
  • Wojewódzkie Archiwum Państwowe we Wrocławiu, akta zespołu Wydział Samorządowy Prowincji Śląskiej we Wrocławiu, sygn. 668, teczka Olbendorf (jako „Keller”).

General information

  • Type: hillfort
  • Chronology: koniec XIII-XIV w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Gnojna
  • Location: Voivodeship opolskie, district brzeski, commune Grodków - obszar wiejski
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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