lunes, 25 de octubre de 2010


The site Milanówek (Poland), district Grodzisk Mazowiecki, nr AZP 58-63/18 is situated 31 km south-west of Warsaw, the capital of Poland. The excavations there were run from 01.04.2009 to 18.05.2009 by the arachaeological company ORION. Within the limits of the site the workers observed evidences of the settlement from the Neolithic period to the modern era and the remains of the blast furnaces which indicate the existence of the metallurgical area in this place during the Roman Period.
Pending the excavations 308 structures from different periods were found, including 217 blast furnaces, 1 lime kiln, 1 well, 88 pits and 1 agglomeration of stones.

The furnaces in the site were unorganized. Like in the other sites situated on the Mazovian Centre of Metallurgy, they were designed for a single use, dug into the ground and had a clay shaft of the height of ca. 1,5 m. They were also accompanied by a lime kiln and a well, which might have been used before or during the process of melting. It is certain with the kiln, which was located in the close neighbourhood. It is much interesting that a few small pieces of the horse bone (tibia) were discovered in the kiln. Up to this time the animal bones were been finding in the other contexts. We know about the dogs and horses burials which may identify the beliefs and rituals connected with the establishment of the furnaces. It is difficult to say why the bones occurred there. They may be the food scraps, but we should remember that this part of the leg is not very consumer attractive.

The well found on the site might have been used by the metallurgists, but on the other hand it is situated far from the furnaces. It is also possible that there is another area of furnaces closer to the well which has not been discovered yet. What we know about it is that types of wells appeared at the end of early Roman Period, but they were the most common were during the late Roman Period.

According to the pottery classification it is possible to distinguish four archaeological cultures: the Culture of Funnel-shaped Cups (Neolithic period), the Trzciniec Culture (early Bronze Age), the Lusatian Culture (late Brozne and early Iron Ages) and the Przeworsk Culture (La Tene and the Roman Periods). The biggest amount of the material is connected with the two last cultures (Lusatian and Przeworsk). The Lusatian settlement might have turned up on these lands at the end of II or at the beginning if I millennium BC and lasted till the end of the Hallstatt Period, which is indicated by the types and forms of the pottery. The earliest przeworsk material dated to the late La Tene. Most of the finds is from the early Roman Period and only two pieces come from late Roman Period (pottery rolled on the wheel). Among the other objects we can distinguish the very corroded bronze broach (Almgren 67/68). In general they are dated to the 1st century AD. Except the broach, the archaeologists found an iron awl, two pieces of the flint stone and the clay loom.

Anna Mrowiec (Warsaw University)

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