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Hillfort - Zabytek.pl


woj. mazowieckie, pow. mławski, gm. Dzierzgowo-gmina wiejska

The hill fort in Tańsk-Przedbory is an example of a conical motte that is characteristic of the archaeological landscape of Mazovia.

Together with the settlement located about 300 m to the west and the cemetery adjacent thereto it form an early medieval settlement complex.

Location and description

The hill fort, known locally as the ‘Mound’, is located about 800 m to the north, north-west, from the centre of the village. It is situated on the right bank of the Orzyc river, on a small promontory, surrounded by forests and waterlogged meadows. The location was chosen due to the proximity of the intersection of Orzyc, Tana and Wiewnia, along which transport routes were located in the early middle ages.

The hill fort has the shape of a flat cone and is about 4 metres high. The diameter of the base is about 45 metres, whereas the top is about 30 metres in diameter. The hill fort is now a wasteland with several trees at the bottom of the rampart. An arable field reaches the foot of the hill fort.


According to Łucja Okulicz, the hill fort in Tańsk-Przedbory was functioning for a short period of time, in the first half of the 11th century. The researchers concluded from the results of field investigations that there were probably two phases of buildings on the site, each of them being successively destroyed by fire. The build-ups below the rampart also contained fragments of ceramics dating back to the period before the 10th century. More recent findings indicate that the hill fort may date back even to to the second half of the 10th -12th century.

Condition and results of archaeological research

The ring fort in Tańsk-Przedbory was known as early as the 1930s. An inventory was compiled in 1952 and verified 5 years later. In 1965, Łucja Okulicz carried out surveys on the site. In 1992, the hill fort was registered within the framework of the “Archaeological Picture of Poland” programme.

Trail excavations of 1965 were opened in the south-western section of the interior of the hill fort. Excavations of the site have uncovered two level of stone pavement, covered with subsequent burned layers containing burned wooden structural elements. A layer of stones laid under these layers was used to harden the passages between the buildings. Excavations of the site have also revealed outlines of several structures, including one with a hearth. Archaeologists conducting archaeological research also found movable monuments: fragments of pottery, iron knife and bucket bail arm and animal bones. Levelling layers preceding the construction of the fortified settlements contained ceramics dating from the period before the 10th century.

As a result of radiocarbon dating (using the so-called C14 method), it was determined that the hill fort dates back to 890-1020 AD. By contrast, after conducting a further analysis researchers established that the ceramic vessels discovered on the site originated in the second half of the 10th -12th c.

The hill fort is located in the area of land being private property, away from buildings; the area surrounding the fort can be accessed from a dirt road from Tańsk-Przedbory towards the north.

Compiled by Agnieszka Oniszczuk, National Heritage Board of Poland, 02.09.2014 r.


  • Malinowska-Sypek A., Sypek R., Sukniewicz D., Brzeziński W. (wprowadzenie), Przewodnik archeologiczny po Polsce, Warsaw 2010, pp. 323-325.
  • Okulicz Ł., sprawozdanie z badań sondażowych na grodziskach w Krajewie wielkim i Tańsku-Przedborach, pow. Przasnysz, w 1965 roku, „Sprawozdania Archeologiczne”, vol. 19, 1968, pp. 361-362.
  • Okulicz Ł., Tańsk-Przedbory, gmina Dzierzgowo (d. pow. Przasnysz), woj. ciechanowskie, [in:] Grodziska Mazowsza i Podlasia (w granicach dawnego województwa warszawskiego), collective work, Wrocław -Warszawa -Kraków -Gdańsk 1976, pp. 141-145.
  • Ościłowski J., Uwarunkowania geograficzne lokalizacji grodów na północnym Mazowszu (X - pocz. XIII w.): problematyka badań interdyscyplinarnych, „Rocznik Muzeum Mazowieckiego w Płocku”, R. 19, 2011, pp. 7-40.

Category: hillfort

Protection: Register of monuments, Monuments records

Inspire id: PL.1.9.ZIPOZ.NID_A_14_AR.42497, PL.1.9.ZIPOZ.NID_E_14_AR.1295091