Hillfort, Trzcin
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

Example of medieval hillfort connected with the settlement and military expansion from Mazowsze in the 11th and beginning of the 12th century.

Location and description

The hillfort is located approx. 2.5 km to the south-west from the Trzcin village and to the south from the road leading from Mroczno to Trzcin. It is an element of untransformed landscape with respect to nature, connected with the valley of the Wel river. The site is located at the edge of the arable land on the high end of the flat hill constituting a part of the upland. Defensive complex in Trzcin is of irregular oval shape surrounded by a ring rampart. The width of the rampart at its basis equals 15 metres. Its height in the western part equals ca. 5 m. The maidan area is small and equals approx. 2 ares. Maidan consists of two parts located on two different levels. Behind the rampart, in the north-eastern part of the hillfort an earthen bastion with dimensions of 30 x 40 metres is located, and its surface lies ca. 3 metres below the crown of the rampart.


Despite conducted archaeological surveys, it is difficult to define both the chronology and the functions of the hillfort. In the southern part of the site the fragments of ceramic vessels dating back to the 10th-11th century were discovered, while ceramic material found in the northern part comes from the 12th-13th century and late Middle Ages. Small amount of historic material found during the survey is suggestive of refugial function of the settlement, but the presence of earthen bastion constituting additional defensive element and the very location of the hillfort are the prerequisites for the structure to function as a safeguard for the Wel river crossing. The hillfort was known in literature before the Second World War. In 1930 Władysław Łęga mentioned it in its research paper concerning Pomorze in early Middle Ages. Based on excavations that destroyed a great part of maidan, it may be assumed that not only the historic researchers were interested in the site.

Condition and results of archaeological research

First excavations were conducted in 1975 by Jerzy Gąssowski of University of Warsaw, however their results are not known. Subsequent studies of survey-rescue nature were performed in the years 1990 and 1998 the expeditions from Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń. In 1990 two trial excavations were explored and the area around the hillfort was subject to surface surveys. As part of the trials the traces after residential buildings connected with rampart structures were registered. Maybe a similar complex existed also in the central part of hillfort maidan, unfortunately a high degree of devastation of this part of the site through wasteful excavations made it impossible to fully recognize the site. For the same reason the mutual dependents between the higher southern part of the hillfort forming a kind of bastion and a lower - north-eastern one could not be identified.

The place of historical interest is accessible.

Compiled by Adam Mackiewicz, 22.11.2014.



  • Grążawski K., Ziemia lubawska na pograniczu słowiańsko-pruskim w VIII - XIII w. Studium nad rozwojem osadnictwa, Olsztyn 2009 s. 173 -175.
  • Łęga W., Kultura Pomorza we wczesnym średniowieczu na podstawie wykopalisk, Toruń 1930, s. 539.

General information

  • Type: hillfort
  • Chronology: 1001-1200
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Trzcin
  • Location: Voivodeship warmińsko-mazurskie, district nowomiejski, commune Grodziczno
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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