Hillfort, Starosiedle
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl
photo

The hill fort in Starosiedle is an interesting example of a defensive structure, inhabited for the first time by the population of the Lusatian culture in the Hallstatt period, and again — in the Early Middle Ages.

Location and description

The hillfort is located on the south-eastern side of Starosiedle, at the confluence of Lubsza river and Młynówka river, in an areas which was until recently waterlogged. Lusatian culture and early medieval settlement focused on a sand hill measuring approx. 80 m by 90 m and up to 4 m in height.

The hill on which the site was discovered is roughly oval in shape. The highest point is located in its middle section. The eastern edge of the hillfort is partly destroyed. There are no traces of embankments on the surface of the hill.

History

Archaeological studies, carried out by Carl Schuchhardt in the years 1920-1921 and by a team supervised by Zbigniew Kobyliński in 2001, indicate that the earliest archaeological traces of penetration of the raised area of land in Starosiedle date probably from the Neolithic period and the Bronze Age — however, traces of structures from that period have not been found. Only the population of the Lusatian culture established a small fortified settlement on this site, with buildings featuring a post structure, surrounded by a wooden defensive structure, reinforced with stones at the base. The fortified settlement existed around 700-400 BC. Probably in the mid- 9th century people settled again on the hill, as evidenced by the presence of ceramics dating from this period to the mid- 10th century. Recent excavations have not confirmed the existence of an early medieval fortified settlement. Probably it was an open settlement.

Condition and results of archaeological research

The first excavations in the southern part of the site were carried out between 1920 and 1921 by Carl Schuchhardt, then only in 2001 by a team from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw under the supervision of Zbigniew Kobyliński. At that time, the main excavation was undertaken in the southern, most damaged part of the hill fort; the second excavation — in the northern part, where wasteful exploitation of sand was recorded. Two additional trial excavations which measured 2 m in width were undertaken on the eastern and western edge of the site. Carl Schuchhardt in his report on the findings from the archaeological research project presented a mock-up of the hill fort buildings, which was validated by the findings from later research. In total, in 2001 archaeologists discovered 112 medieval and early medieval structures, half of which are postholes. Part of the postholes are traces of probably at least two buildings on the ground measuring 7 x 12 m and 8.5 x 12 m. Moreover, excavations uncovered three storage pits and a strip of dark earth surrounding the centre of the hill fort, which can be interpreted as traces of burned wooden defensive structure. During the research in 2001 nearly 10,000 fragments of ceramics were collected, of which 92% are pieces of vessels dating from the Early Iron Age. The rest dates back to the Early Middle Ages. Almost 100 artefacts uncovered on the site include clay spindle whorls, stone axe, two quern stones and two iron knives, iron nails and bronze rivets, among others.

The monument is available to visitors.

Compiled by dr Krzysztof Garbacz, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Zielona Góra,16-09-2014 r.

Bibliography

  • Kobylińska U., Kobyliński Z., Wach D., W osiemdziesiąt lat później: ponowne badania ratownicze grodziska grupy białowickiej kultury łużyckiej w Starosiedlu, gm. Gubin woj. lubuskie w roku 2001, Warszawa 2002 [mps w WUOZ w Zielonej Górze].
  • Schuchhardt C., Witzen und Starzeddel, zwei Burgen der Lausitzer Kultur, „“Praehistorische Zeitschrift” 1926, t. 17, s. 184-201.

General information

  • Type: hillfort
  • Chronology: Wczesna epoka żelaza (VII - IV w. p.n.e.)
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Starosiedle
  • Location: Voivodeship lubuskie, district krośnieński, commune Gubin
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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