image/svg+xml53XIII/1/2022INTERDISCIPLINARIA ARCHAEOLOGICANATURAL SCIENCES IN ARCHAEOLOGYhomepage: http://www.iansa.euDolní Věstonice – Vysoká zahrada: an Integrated Geophysical Survey of an Early Medieval Fortifed SettlementPeter Milo1*, Michaela Prišťáková1, Tomáš Tencer1, Michal Vágner1, Igor Murín21Department of Archaeology and Museology, Masaryk University, Arne Nováka 1, 602 00 Brno, Czech Republic2Archaeological Institute, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Akademická 2, 949 21 Nitra, Slovakia1. IntroductionStudying fortifed settlements is one of the essential topics in mediaeval archaeology. Research within Moravia (a region located in the eastern half of the Czech Republic) has long tended to concentrate on resolving the issues of important sites related to the existence of the Moravian principality in the 9thand 10thcenturies. However, the sites linked to the building of the Přemyslid domain in the 11thand 12thcenturies have been investigated to a lesser extent. Moravia was annexed by Bohemia in the frst half of the 11thcentury. This process went hand in hand with the building of an administrative system of fortifed points to ensure the execution of Přemyslid princely power in Moravia. This paper presents the results of research into the fortifed settlement of Dolní Věstonice – Vysoká zahrada, which represents one such local centre. The present study aims to extend our knowledge with new data acquired with the help of a combination of non-invasive survey methods. The results of our contribution are summarised and an attempt is made to show them in the context of other well-known facts.2. The site and its archaeological excavationThe fortifed settlement of Vysoká zahrada is situated north of the village of Dolní Věstonice. The site used to be surrounded by the Dyje (Thaya) River from its southern side, but since the 1980s the surrounding area has been fooded due to the construction of the Nové Mlýny waterworks (Figure 1). The fortifed area of the settlement covers an area of about 1 ha, and preserved ramparts in the northern and western part reach up to 6 m in height. The southern part of the site was destroyed due to the meandering fow of the Dyje River.The site was mentioned for the frst time by Inocenc Ladislav Červinka in 1928 as a fortifed settlement from the time of the Bohemian Duke Břetislav (Červinka, 1928, p.124). The beginning of settlement dates back to the second half of the 10thcentury (Měřínský, 1986, pp.61–62, p.66). Volume XIII ● Issue 1/2022 ● Pages 53–61*Corresponding author. E-mail: peter.milo@mail.muni.czARTICLE INFOArticle history:Received: 19thNovember 2021Accepted: 5th January 2022DOI: Medieval Periodfortifed settlementfortifcationarchaeological excavationelectrical resistivity tomographyground-penetrating radar surveymagnetometryABSTRACTThe fortifed settlement at Dolní Věstonice – Vysoká zahrada belongs to the important Early Medieval centres connected with the establishment of the Přemyslid domain in Moravia. The site functioned as a local administrative and economic centre from about the middle of the 11thcentury to the end of the 12thcentury. In written historical sources it was known as Strachotíngrad (“Castrum Strachotín”). Between 1948 and 1986, several minor archaeological excavations were made at this site. Our work’s purpose was to gain new knowledge by deploying proven geophysical prospecting methods in archaeology. The frst two of these methods, Electrical Resistivity Tomography (ERT) and Ground-penetrating radar (GPR) focused on the rampart. Within the third used method – magnetometry, we focused on the prospection of the inner area of the hillfort. Based on the results, it was possible to identify some of the construction features of the fortifcation and locate the course of the no longer existing rampart and several settlement structures. At the same time, the geophysical survey also made clear the overall plan of past archaeological excavations.
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2022 ● XIII/1 ● 53–61Peter Milo, Michaela Prišťáková, Tomáš Tencer, Michal Vágner, Igor Murín: Dolní Věstonice – Vysoká zahrada: an Integrated Geophysical Survey of an Early Medieval Fortifed Settlement54The fortifcation is presumed to have been built in the second half of the 11thcentury (Procházka, 2009, p.134). According to Boris Novotný, it had two construction phases, and the demise of both can be linked to violent events (Novotný, 1982a, pp.325–326, p.333). During the second half of the 11thcentury, a single-nave stone church with a horseshoe-shaped apse was built, and sometime in the middle of the 12thcentury was surrounded by a wooden palisade. Around this time, a cemetery was established by the church (Jelínková and Kavánová, 2002, p.387). The site is also known from written sources as the Přemyslid administrative centre Strachotíngrad (“Castrum Strachotín”; Fridrich, ed., 1904–1907, pp.254–255, no. 289; Boczek, ed., 1836, p.293, no. 318; Měřínský, 1985, p.207).The frst archaeological excavations were carried out by Josef Poulík in 1948 and 1950–1952 (Novotný, 1982b). Further feld research took place in 1979 by Zdeněk Měřínský (Měřínský, 1981, p.42). He subsequently returned to the site in 1986 due to the damaged fortifcation in the northeast corner of the site, done by construction workers (Himmelová et. al., 1989, p.56). No archaeological excavation has taken place on the site since then.Two trial trenches through the fortifcation were made during the excavations, frst in the eastern part, the second in the northern part. In both trenches, remains of wooden beams and strongly burned layers were preserved. In the northern trench, on the outer side of the fortifcation, a collapsed layer of horizontal wooden beams on the top of an intensely-burned layer was found. In the original body of the rampart, layers of dark and light-coloured clay alternated with layers of grey-black sand occurred. The individual layers were probably separated by an organic layer of wicker or twigs. During the research, fault lines were identifed in several places, along which there was a shift of the overlying layers. The construction of the rampart was described as log chamber-bound, without embedded elements into the subsoil (Figure 2; Novotný, 1982b).Inside the fortifed settlement, the dark cultural layer lay under alluvial clay, gravel, and sand. The thickness of the complex of alluvial layers ranges from 60–100 cm, but in some places, it reaches almost 2 m (Měřínský, 1981, p.42; Novotný, 1982b). The stratigraphy of the site is quite complicated. In various places, two cultural layers (both chronologically dated into the same period) were separated by another alluvial layer. The cultural layer was signifcantly mixed with carbon, and burnt layers were also found around and in some archaeological features. There were several excavated archaeological structures: a stone church with burial ground with 95 skeletons, a hut, possibly with log construction, several hearths, sunken pits, stone cumulations and stakeholes. One of the excavated features was possibly used for the production of glass rings (Měřínský, 1985, p.207; Sedláčková and Zapletalová, 2012, p.541).3. Location of archaeological excavationsThe site was excavated using long trial trenches, which were subsequently expanded in places where more interesting archaeological situations were captured. Seasons 1948 and 1950 have spatially clear layouts. However, in seasons 1951–1952, spatial references of the excavated felds are