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Traces of the 13th Legion Gemina found in Vienna

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Excavations by the Vienna City Archaeology department have uncovered traces of the 13th Legion Gemina during excavations in preparation for development at the Kindermanngasse Elementary School in Vienna.

The 13th Legion Gemina (Legio XIII Gemina) was a legion of the Roman Imperial army levied by Julius Caesar in 57 BC.

The legion remained faithful to Caesar during his civil war against the conservative Optimates faction of the senate, and accompanied Caesar when he famously crossed the Rubicon in 49 BC to march on Rome.

The legion was involved in numerous campaigns and major battles during the centuries, including the Gallic Wars, the Battle of Actium, and the Dacian wars.

The last recorded mention of the legion dates to the 6th century AD, with the Notitia Dignitatum, a detailed administrative document of the Late Roman Empire, noting that the legion was garrisoned at the Babylon Fortress in the former area of the Heliopolite Nome, situated upon the east bank of the Nile in Egypt.

Excavations at the Kindermanngasse Elementary School (the 4th oldest school in Vienna) have found evidence of a large-scale Roman building dated to the 2nd century AD.

One of the excavation trenches found a pit filled with bricks, which according to the researchers are remnants of pilae stacks used to raise the floor for a hypocaust heating system.

Upon closer inspection, archaeologists found that the bricks are stamped with the name of Legio XIII Gemina, providing conclusive proof that the legion was responsible for construction of the legionary camps at Roman Vindobona (Vienna) around AD 97.

Archaeologists also discovered remnants of post holes, pits, and ovens, along with indications of additional Roman structures. Moreover, they uncovered archaeological contexts dating from the medieval and early modern period.

Header Image Credit : Vienna City Archaeology

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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Archaeology

Researchers find that Żagań-Lutnia5 is an Iron Age stronghold

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Archaeologists have conducted a ground penetrating radar (GPR) survey of Żagań-Lutnia5, revealing that the monument is an Iron Age stronghold.

Żagań-Lutnia5 was first discovered in the 1960s near the town of Żagań in western Poland, with previous studies suggesting that the monument could be associated with the Białowieża group of the Lusatian urnfield culture.

The Lusatian culture existed in the later Bronze Age and early Iron Age (1300–500 BC) in most of what is now Poland. It formed part of the Urnfield systems found from eastern France, southern Germany and Austria to Hungary, and the Nordic Bronze Age in northwestern Germany and Scandinavia.

A recent study led by Dr. Arkadiusz Michalak on behalf of the Archaeological Museum of the Middle Oder River has revealed two parallel sequences of magnetic anomalies at Żagań-Lutnia5 that represent the remnants of earthen and wooden fortifications.

The course of the fortifications were recorded in the northern, western and southern parts of the study area, however, a study of the eastern section was limited due to a sewage collector built in the 1990’s.

Exploratory excavations found four cultural layers with remains of huts and hearths, in addition to a burnt layer from the last phase of occupation that suggests a period of conflict.

According to the researchers, the monument was likely built by the same people who constructed the stronghold in Wicin and a number of verified defensive settlements within the area of the Elbe, Nysa Łużycka and Odra.

As a result of the study, Żagań-Lutnia5 has been added to the catalogue of verified Early Iron Age strongholds located in today’s Lubusz Voivodeship.

Header Image Credit : Provincial Office for the Protection of Monuments

Sources : Provincial Office for the Protection of Monuments – Archaeological research at the site of Żagań-Lutnia5

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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Archaeology

Rare copper dagger found in Polish forest

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A rare copper dagger from over 4,000-years-ago has been discovered in the forests near Korzenica, southeastern Poland.

Piotr Gorlach from the Historical and Exploration Association Grupa Jarosław made the discovery during a metal detector survey in Jarosław Forest.

Upon realising the significance of the find, Mr Gorlach contacted the Podkarpacie conservator of monuments in Przemyśl and the Orsetti House Museum.

The dagger dates from over 4,000 years ago, a period in which objects made from copper were extremely rare in the Central European Plain.

A preliminary study indicates that the dagger may originate from the Carpathian Basin or Ukrainian steppe, and predates the development of bronze metallurgy for the region.

This transition is traditionally known as the Copper Age and marked a gradual incorporation of copper while stone remained the primary resource utilised.

Dr. Elżbieta Sieradzka-Burghardt from the museum in Jarosław, said: “This is a period of enormous change in the main raw materials for the production of tools. Instead of flint tools commonly used in the Stone Age, more and more metal products appear heralding the transition to the next period – the Bronze Age.”

Daggers during this era were a universal attribute of warriors, however, being made from copper suggests that the owner held a high social status. This is further supported by its size measuring 10.5 cm in length, which for this period is actually very large when compared to other metal objects from the same era.

The dagger has already been added to the collection of the Orsetti House Museum in Jarosław.

Header Image Credit : Łukasz Śliwiński

Sources : PAP – A dagger from over 4,000 years ago found in the forest.

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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