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Barrow cemetery, formerly called Fodersdorfer Forst - Zabytek.pl


woj. warmińsko-mazurskie, pow. braniewski, gm. Płoskinia-gmina wiejska

Example of a Barrow cemetery of the Western Baltic Barrow culture

Location and description

Cemetery is located in the south-western shore of Jezioro Pierzchalskiego artifically filled with water on the Pasłęka river, within the area of a forest complex, in the immediate vicinity of the forest roads intersection. The burial mounds forming the cemetery complex are dispersed along the forest road running on the SE - NW axis. Individual structures are located randomly and do not create any regular outline of the cemetery.


The site was discovered in 1828. At the beginning of the 19th century cemetery complex included 26 burial mounds, out of which 11 were defined as large. Until 1980 18 of them were preserved and one was completely destroyed.

Condition and results of archaeological research

First surveys on the cemetery were carried out in 1870. Subsequent ones took place in the years 1904-1906. Then five burial mounds were studied. Another time archeologists came back to the cemetery after the war, in the years 1980-1987. The excavations were carried out by the Institute of Archaeology at the University of Warsaw. Then 10 subsequent burial mounds were surveyed. Both, the studies at the beginning of the 20th century and the ones performed after the war enabled to trace the construction of respective structures and to define a crematory, urn burial rite. Based on the method of placing the urns in burial mounds, older burials were distinguished, which were placed in small stone chests and housings and stone weirs. And subsequent burials consisted in placing the urns on rectangular cobbles. Individual burials without urns were also registered. A stone structure of burial mound VIII draws attention, because it is related to a solar-lunar symbolism closely connected with burial rite of the West Baltic Barrows culture. Among the monuments acquired during research works there is for example a face-type urn and a stone phallus.

Despite being located within the area of a forest complex, the burial mounds are well visible and transparent against the background. The form of their post-research exposure requires special attention, since it presents the respective types of structures that were situated under the mounds erected, including a stone chest, which originally contained urns. Moreover, one of the burial mounds was left in a manner illustrating the research methodolody of these types of structures with a preserved cross inlier. Cemetery complex is integrated into a natural education path and the information boards are placed there. Historical materials collected during examinations are stored in the Institute of Archeology of the University of Warsaw.

Compiled by Hanna Mackiewicz, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Olsztyn, 28.08.2014



  • A. Bezzenberger, Hügelgraber in dem Fodersdorfer Forst, Kr. Braunsberg, [w:] Sitzunsberichte der Altertumsgesellschaft Prussia, Bd 22, 1909, s. 1-27
  • Ł. Okulicz, Kultura kurhanów zachodniobałtyjskich we wczesnej epoce żelaza, Wrocław-Warszawa-Kraków, 1970, s. 186.
  • A. Waluś, Wstępne wyniki badań cmentarzyska kurhanowego w miejscowości Piórkowo, gmina Płoskinia, woj. elbląskie [w:] badania archeologiczne w województwie elbląskim w latach 1980 - 83, 1987 r., s. 177 - 192.
  • A. Waluś, Cmentarzysko kurhanowe w Piórkowie, woj. elbląskie w świetle prac wykopaliskowych przeprowadzonych w latach 1984 - 1987 [w:] Barbaricum ’92, tom 2 Studia z archeologii ludów barbarzyńskich z wybrzeży Bałtyku i dorzecza Wisły, W-wa 1992, s. 39-41.

Category: Barrow

Protection: Register of monuments, Monuments records

Inspire id: PL.1.9.ZIPOZ.NID_A_28_AR.37360, PL.1.9.ZIPOZ.NID_E_28_AR.1672778