Two burial mounds from Pielgrzymowo, Pielgrzymowo
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

Two burial mounds from Pielgrzymowo



Burial mounds of the type found also in Rostołty — an example of "ducal" burials, characteristic of the elite of Goths.

Location and description

The site is located on the verge of a forest complex situated within a distance of approx. 1000 m in the straight line to the south from the mill in the village Borowy Młyn, approx. 350 to the west from the river Nida, and 1300 m to the east from the Pielgrzymowo–Olszewo route. The first (western) burial mound, with a diameter of approx. 20 m at the base, survived in a form of an earthen perimeter surrounding a sunk inner part. At the bottom of the inner part, in its central section, there is a concrete structure shaped as the letter "U", probably imitating the outline of the wooden burial chamber discovered during excavations. The second (eastern) burial mound is located within a distance of approx. 10 m from the first one. It is circular in shape, with a diameter of approx. 15 m at the base. It is ca. 2.5 m high.


The mounds contain single skeletal burials and were created around mid-5th century A.C. It is known that one of the mounds, probably still in the ancient times, was plundered. As archeological structures, the mounds were known and examined in the inter-war period by German archeologists.

Condition and results of archaeological research

The first (western) mound, examined by Dietrich Bohnsack in 1937, is commonly referred to in the subject-matter literature because of an extraordinary contents, which were found in the structure despite the fact it had been plundered previously. Among the items discovered within the mound, there were, inter alia, a golden bracelet, decorative metal elements of a belt, and a cover of a wooden vessel, evidencing that its creators used a lathe. The central part of the mound contained a wooden chamber sized 2.8 x 2 m, made of wooden logs and equipped with a wooden floor, used as a final resting place. The wooden structure was covered with large stones, and then with earthen structure secured with a layer of tightly arranged smaller stones. Relics of the burial chamber can be seen in the Museum of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn. The second mound was subject to excavations in 1939, however results of the examination are unspecified. Both burial mounds were subject to surface surveys after the World War II: in 1986 by Urszula Perlikowska and in 1997 by Maria Wielgus.


  • Bohnsack D. Die Germanen in Kreise Neidenburg, „Altpreussen”, t.3, 1938, z. 3, s.68
  • Jaskanis J. Okulicz J., Kultura wielbarska /faza cecelska/ [w:] Prahistoria ziem polskich, t. V, późny okres lateński i okres rzymski, 1981, s. 186-187, 189, ryc. 70, tab. XXIV:18
  • Kokowski A., Goci, od Skandzy do Campi Gothorum, Warszawa 2007, s. 86-88, 120, 190, 195.

General information

  • Type: Barrow
  • Chronology: połowa V w. p.n.e
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Pielgrzymowo
  • Location: Voivodeship warmińsko-mazurskie, district nidzicki, commune Kozłowo
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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