Hillfort, Obrowiec
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl
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The conical hill fort is a trace of the past after medieval settlement and is an important element of the cultural heritage of the region. It is exceptionally attractive, has a discernible form, and is beautifully located and connected to the village by a picturesque alley in the fields.

Location and description

The site is located about 180 metres east of the flood embankment of the Odra River, in a lowland area with some marshy spots. It can be accessed from the village by an alley of chestnut and oak trees measuring about 2 km in length and running in the fields towards the Odra River.

The hill fort forms a vast quadrangular cone surrounded by two rings of ramparts separated by a moat. At half the cone height there is a narrow fluvial terrace, then turning into an inner rampart measuring about 3.5 m in width. They are surrounded by a moat (17-18 m) and an outer rampart (11 m in width), partly damaged in the western part, during the construction of a flood embankment. The moat is seasonally filled with water and is marshy at some spots. In the north-eastern part, the rampart is clearly broken, further on that line there is a small disappearing watercourse. Entrance to the fortress was probably on the opposite side; however, it is barely discernible due to the aforementioned damage.

The ramparts and cone were built partly of earth dug out during the construction of the moat. The cone shows numerous traces of sandpits and excavations. The area inside the hill fort is overgrown with deciduous trees, picturesquely surrounding the whole site. Despite the damage, all parts of the hill fort are easily discernible.

History

Interpretations of the findings of archaeological research conducted at the site from pre-war years are quite divergent; former researchers date the hill fort to the Early Middle Ages (up to the 11th c.), 13th century, or the turn of the 13th to the 14th century. At present, it seems most likely that its use dates back to the 14th-15th century.

Before the war, the place was known as Kopietz or Tempelberg.

The hill fort is associated with numerous legends described on tourist blogs and websites, which discuss the relationship between the hill fort and the Templars and robbers, or the underground passage leading under the Odra River. Among the inhabitants there are stories about the haunted place, creaking iron doors taken away from the hill fort, etc. In addition to the aforementioned notes, they result in a great popularity of that place among amateurs of unconventional experiences. As early as in the 1970s, it was planned to boost tourism to the site; however, these plans were never implemented. At the same time, the site was not excavated in a way that would provide clear answers to questions about its origin, time of use, and the wall described at the beginning of the 20th century and others. Presumably, it was erected to protect the Odra River crossing.

Condition and results of archaeological research

The first excavations of the hill fort were carried out as early as before 1945. In 1900, Klose discovered a 75-centimetre-thick limestone wall that was designed to surround the cone at the base and the remnants of an undefined building with traces of burnt material. Earlier, an iron door was found at the site. In 1957, Józef Kaźmierczyk and Klemens Macewicz conducted surface and exploratory surveys. Measurements and a topographic survey were made in 1972 (Klemens Macewicz, Sylwia Wuszkan, Eugeniusz Tomczak). Abundant historical material was discovered, including fragments of bricks and vessels, animal bones, etc.

The site is open to visitors. At present, the easiest way to access the hill fort site is from the south by using an alley in the fields that turns in the north-west direction to the flood embankment.

compiled by Aleksandra Ziółkowska, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Opole, 14-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Sprotte F., Das Museum in Oppeln, Oberschlesische Heomat, 1905, 1, p. 75
  • Vermehren, Der “Kopietz” oder Tempelberg bei Oderwitz, Oberschlesien, 1908-1909, pp. 244-247;
  • Mücke E., Ist die Burg Ottmuth eine Tempelherrngrundung?, Gross Strehlitzer Heimatkalender für das Jahr 1937, p. 87;
  • Kozłowska W., Wczesnośredniowieczne grody woj. Opolskiego na tle warunków fizjograficzno - gospodarczych, Konserwator Opolski, vol. 1, pp. 6-23, item 143; 1956
  • Kaźmierczyk J., Macewicz K, Wuszkan S., Studia i materiały do osadnictwa Opolszczyzny wczesnośredniowiecznej, Opole 1977, pp. 344-349;
  • Gorgolewski W., Tomczak E., Grodziska Górnego Śląska i Zagłębia Dąbrowskiego z lotu ptaka, Katowice 1996, p. 70;
  • Tomczak E., Mało znane warownie Górnego Śląska, Katowice 2012, pp. 136-139.

General information

  • Type: hillfort
  • Chronology: XIV-XV w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Obrowiec
  • Location: Voivodeship opolskie, district krapkowicki, commune Gogolin - obszar wiejski
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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