image/svg+xml43 VIII/1/2017 INTERDISCIPLINARIA ARCHAEOLOGICA NATURAL SCIENCES IN ARCHAEOLOGY homepage: http://www.iansa.eu Pedogenesis, Pedochemistry and the Functional Structure of the Waldhufendorf Field System of the Deserted Medieval Village Spindelbach, the Czech Republic Jan Horák a,b* , Tomáš Klír a a Institute of Archaeology, Faculty of Arts, Charles University, Celetná 20, 116 36 Prague 1, Czech Republic b Department of Ecology, Faculty of Environmental Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences, Kamýcká 129, 165 21 Prague 6 – Suchdol, Czech Republic 1. Introduction Agricultural feld systems have been heavily studied in the central European area ( e.g. Klír 2008; 2016; Kötschke 1953; Krenzlin 1952; Krüger 1967; Lienau, Uhlig 1978). The main points of these studies were the villages identifcation and mapping in their terrain and the classifcation of the villages based on their feld systems. Other studies have been performed in Britain and elsewhere, generally in the north-western and northern parts of Europe (Frandsen 1983; Hall 2014; Christie, Stamper, Eds. 2012). These feld systems bear crucial information: not only about the agricultural practice of rural societies, but also about the fundamental agrarian, social, and environmental changes in Europe over the last millennium (Hofmann 2014; Klír 2010a; 2010b; Schreg 2013). That is to say, in European agrarian society, feld systems have refected the socio-economic organisation – and every feld pattern has been intrinsically connected with the specifc economic and social relations, as well as the agricultural practice (Hopcroft 1999, 15; De Moor et al. 2002; Thoen 2004). The spatial distribution of agricultural activities can also provide information about the “pure culture” (Jones 2009).The relationship between human settlement activities and the soil part of the biosphere has been intensively studied over the decades. Such intense study has introduced a wide spectrum of topics: the infuence of soils on the placement of human activities in the landscape; the interaction between human activities and their soils; soils as one of the basic archives of archaeological evidence; and also the role of human activity as a factor in the pedogenic direction (Bork et al. 1998; Walkington 2010). Nevertheless, there are also stimuli for more multi-disciplinary research, as many projects are still focused on either the historical or natural perspective, without bringing them together. For example, Rainer Schreg writes about the need to use an ecological Volume VIII ● Issue 1/2017 ● Pages 43–57 *Corresponding author. E-mail: jan_horak@email.cz ARTICLE INFO Article history: Received: 15 th December 2016Accepted: 5 th May 2017 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/ 10.24916/iansa.2017.1.4 Key words: Medieval colonisationMedieval-Modern Era transitionvillage economy feld system ecology podzolmulti-element analysisphosphorus ABSTRACT Spindelbach was a Waldhufendorf type of village, i.e. every household could manage its own felds independently of other households. Our study has importance for research on the economic and social development between the Medieval and Modern Era and for studies of human impact. Performing soil and geochemical mapping, we have identifed four geochemical factors in a clearly interpretable pattern: 1) general geology and soil environment (represented mainly by Al, Si, K, Ti, Rb, Sr and Zr) contrasting with the soil organic matter and with pollution coming from atmospheric deposition (P, As, Pb and LE – elements from H to Na); 2) modern pollution and possible historical human activity (mainly As and Pb vs Zn, Fe and Mn); 3) historical human activity related to the village (Zn and Sr); and 4) additional historical human activity of another spatial pattern (P). Although there was no unambiguous relation between podzolization and the human activities observed, generally podzol development was very rapid (it was positively observed on sites ploughed ca 600 years ago). Diferences among the households’ agricultural managements were observed; these could be based on: 1) types of land use in the village area; 2) management intensity; and 3) the subjective management preferences of the peasants. The diferences were manifested by their intensity and by their spatial distribution.
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2017 ● VIII/1 ● 43–57Jan Horák, Tomáš Klír: Pedogenesis, Pedochemistry and the Functional Structure of the Waldhufendorf Field System of the Deserted Medieval Village Spindelbach, the Czech Republic 44 approach in landscape archaeology, where traditional approaches usually only aim at the reconstruction of the environment (Schreg 2014). We see the question from the other side: an insufcient integration of archaeological and palaeoenvironmental methods with purely historic themes, as well as with historical periods (at least in the central-European context where environmental archaeology prevails in the research of prehistoric times).Soils on archaeological sites are studied in many ways: macroscopically (Kristiansen 2001), micromorphologically, and geochemically. Some studies are focused on using phosphorus (see Holliday, Gartner 2007), and there are also studies using multi-element analyses. These analyses are mostly focused on the diferentiation among basic archaeological features (houses, felds, hearths and so on), on the verifcation of human activities, and also on the analysis of the spatial distribution of these activities (Davidson et al. 2007; Nielsen, Kristiansen 2014; Roos, Nolan 2012; Wilson et al. 2009). The spatial extent of particular activities ( e.g. manuring) or land-use types (arable felds, pastures, meadows, or gardens) has also been studied (Entwistle et al. 1998; 2000; Salisbury 2013). Our research of Spindelbach is part of a series of projects focused on the medieval settlement and its transition into the Modern Era (summary by Klír 2010a; 2010b). Thematically, it belongs to the interest of European archaeology in the Medieval-Modern Era transition and the processes of social structure development, regional diversity, and economic history (Andersson et al. 2007; Cerman 2002; Cerman, Maur 2000; Petráň 1964; Scholkmann et al. 2009). The archaeological context of the Czech research into the Medieval settlement is relatively rich (Klír 2008; Krajíc 1983; Nováček 1995; Smetánka 1988; Smetánka, Klápště 1981; Smetánka et al. 1979; Vařeka et al. 2006). However, the majority of this research has avoided mountainous areas, where a combination of traditional agricultural subsistence with non-agricultural production took place (Klír 2010a; 2010b).We have chosen the village of Spindelbach for the following reasons: 1) its location in a mountainous area (on a ridge); 2) the preservation of at least part of its feld system terraces, enabling the identifcation of felds belonging to particular households; 3) it being a Waldhufendorf type of village, i.e. an economic system where every household could manage its felds completely independently of other households; 4) the presence of other historical activities unrelated to the village, but possibly infuencing geochemical and soil conditions – charcoal-burning sites and glassworks; 5) the possible presence of non-agrarian activities – iron processing – revealed by a previous reconnaissance of the site; and 6) previously-observed podzolization gradients enabling the study of its relation to human activities. Our aims were: 1) to perform detailed soil and geochemical mapping with respect to property ownership; 2) to identify geochemical tracers ( i.e. geochemical bearers of information) of past human activity ( e.g. phosphorus is the tracer mostly used); 3) to perform analyses and assess the spatial distribution of these tracers; 4) to evaluate possible diferences among parcel strips ( i.e. householder ownership) and also within the parcel strips, and thus fnd possible management intensities and attitudes among householders; and 5) to fnd and identify the possible relation between podzolization and human activity. 2. Materials and methods2.1 Study site The deserted Medieval village Spindelbach was located on a ridge of the Krušné Hory (Ore Mountains, Erzgebirge) in north-western Bohemia, ca 3 km NW from the small town of Výsluní, close to the Czech / German border (50°28 52.995 N, 13°11 42.143 E) – see Figure 1.The site (Figure 2 and Figure 2.1 in Supplementary Online Material – SOM) consists of a built-up area along the Prunéřovský stream (originally called Spindelbach) and the felds coming from it in the form of parcel strips aligned in a south-west to north-east direction (research into which is presented in this study). The main system of probes and places in the area of the researched feld system is based on the system of parcel strips numbered upwards with altitude, and distance, meaning the distance from households (since the main feld pattern is a linear one from households). The term “distance” always means the distance from the households in the direction of the strips – in the text, on plots, in fgures and in tables. The terms used for spatial descriptions are also related to distance from households: “village vicinity” being the area of felds up to a distance of ca 350 m, and the term “distant part” marks the area of felds between a distance of 950 to 1750 m. The “background area” marks the area around the background probes 100001 to 100005. The term “high altitude area” means the area above the last (13 th ) strip, which includes the background area. There are also other historical landscape features such as: charcoal burning sites (almost all over the researched area up to the distance of 750 m); agrarian stone heaps/mounds found only in the area of strips no. 8 to 12 to the maximum distance of 350 m; and glassworks (built-up area at the altitude of strip no. 10 and at Figure 1. Location of the study area in the Czech Republic near the Czech-German border. Grey areas indicate the spatial distribution of “Waldhufendorf” feld system type in central Europe (by Schröder, Schwarz 1969: map “Die ländlichen Ortsformen in Mitteleuropa gegen Ende des Mittelalters”).
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2017 ● VIII/1 ● 43–57Jan Horák, Tomáš Klír: Pedogenesis, Pedochemistry and the Functional Structure of the Waldhufendorf Field System of the Deserted Medieval Village Spindelbach, the Czech Republic 45 strip no. 4, at the distance of 750 m). There were 13 parcel strips identifed, mainly on the basis of LIDAR data and feldwork observation. There was a place for one or two possible parcel strips more, but it was impossible to decide their possible presence clearly due to the lack of any terrain marks or LIDAR data (the terrain there was merely fat). At higher altitudes, it was mainly peat bog terrain and thus we did not presume any parcel strips there. 2.2 History of the village The village came into existence in the 13 th century (probably in the second half, see Crkal, Černá 2009). There were also three glassworks in the area chronologically preceding the village’s existence with no clear functional connection to the village; there was probably some chronological hiatus between them. There are toponyms like “Glassberg” in Medieval-written sources, but with no notes about the glassworks themselves. It is therefore probable that the glassworks were abandoned by the time of the village’s foundation (Crkal, Černá 2009). The glassworks were located in the area of later village felds (strip 4, distance 750 m) and in the built up area at the altitude of strip 10 (Figure 2 and Figure 2.1 in SOM). There was also a third glassworks in the south-western part of the village vicinity. The frst written record concerning the village comes from 1356 (RBM VI, 175 No. 329; written as “Spinnelbach”), when it belonged to the Alamsdorf family. The last written source comes from 1481, when half of the village was sold (Profous 1951, 552; Sedláček 1923, 59). The Hasištejn dominion property, to which Spindelbach belonged at that time, was divided in 1490 and there was a note about Spindelbach in the division document, but only of Spindelbach as a forest and a fshpond, not a village (AČ V, 543). Therefore, it is presumed that the village had been abandoned sometime between 1481 and 1490. The toponym “Spindelbach” and its variants marking forests, fshponds, or meadows, were noted in written sources from the 16 th and 17 th centuries; it can also be found on the frst military mapping of the area from 1767, or on the stabile cadastre map from 1842 (Crkal, Černá 2009; Figures 13.6.1 to 13.6.5 in SOM). Spindelbach was a typical “Waldhufendorf” (or “Gelängefur” – e.g. Klír 2008, 158) village. We base this statement on these indications: 1) it was a typical village system in this region; 2) the preserved parcel strips system in the form of terraces was fairly regular and the strips were spatially connected to the individual households; and 3) our team is experienced in researching such villages and their feld systems ( e.g. Klír 2008; 2010a; 2010b; 2013; Klír, Kenzler 2009). Waldhufendorf was a regular feld system in central Europe, which was developed during the reclamation of woodland along middle to high altitude mountains during the High Middle Ages, i.e. from the 11 th to the 14 th century (Krüger 1967; see Figure 1 – grey areas). This feld system consisted of wide, long strips, almost equal in size to that of each farmstead, ideally ca 100 m×2300 m (Kuhn 1973; Krüger 1967, 109–110; see Figure 3). Spindelbach parcel strips were only about 50 to 55 m wide. The peasant farmstead lay at the head of the strip. Slightly curved, the strips were adapted to the topography. It is important to mention that the agrarian system was individualistic rather than communal. This means that each farmstead could make its own economic decisions regarding their cultivation independently, because each strip was easily accessible as a consequence of its compact position within the landholding (Lienau, Uhlig 1978, 216; Krüger 1967; Hopcroft 1999, 22–24). In the Modern Period, the original feld pattern was usually disrupted and the strips subdivided as a consequence of socio-economic diferentiation ( e.g. Born 1977, 167–170).