Hungary Archaeology

Hungary Archaeology

The intense research carried out in the second half of the twentieth century gave a decisive contribution to the archaeological knowledge in the Hungary, which is broadened and profoundly changed.

As far as the Paleolithic is concerned, the study of the numerous evidences that emerged allowed their frequent attribution to some well-defined cultures. The interpretation of the materials found in 1964 in Vértesszőlős led to the identification of the Buda industry, which dates back to the Lower Paleolithic. In this locality, remains attributed to Homo Erectus Palaeohungaricus have been found, akin to some archaeoanthropes of China, Java and East Africa. The Mousterian industry (Middle Paleolithic) is attested by two main stations, those excavated at Tata and Érd. The testimonies inherent to the cultures of Szeleta and Pilisszanto, which flourished during the Upper Paleolithic, come from some caves in the Transdanubian area. The most important sites of the eastern Gravettian culture (final phase of the Upper Paleolithic) are those identified in Ságvár and Pilismarót, in the Bacska region, and in Madaras, near the Telecska hills. Near the village of Lovas, in the district of Veszprém, a mine of coloring earth dating back to the Paleolithic was also unearthed: some bone tools used for the extraction and grinding of colors were found there.

According to usprivateschoolsfinder, the orientation of the latest research relating to the Neolithic period is characterized by the re-dimensioning of diffusionist theories, due to the identification of elements that can only be explained in European terms. Most of the numerous Neolithic and Aeneolithic sites investigated in recent decades can be traced back to the cultures of Linear Ceramics (Kisköra-Gát), of Kōrōs (Devaványa-Rehely, Tiszajenő) and of Lengyel (Verseg-Kertekalja, Gorzsa). A settlement of the Linear Ceramics culture has been identified at Szentes with the remains of houses and tombs; in some burials some copper vague has been found, which attest to the oldest use of this material in the Hungary (beginning of the 3rd millennium BC).

The most recent studies on the Bronze Age reflect the problem of dating systems of the testimonies. For this purpose, in fact, the carbon 14 method, refined thanks to a computer program developed in Groningen, and the parallels with the Mycenaean Bronze were widely used: the latter, however, appeared deviant, as the Hungarian Chalcolithic cultures proved to be earlier (2900-1700 BC) to the Mycenaean ones (which in their most ancient phase date back to 1700 BC). Furthermore, it was necessary to overcome the prejudice according to which most of the metal artifacts were imported: in reality, the existence of local traditions and the transmission of processing techniques between successive cultures emerged from the study of the cultures of the Bronze Age. tell, among which the one of Tiszaug-Kéménytetö should be mentioned: here the remains of houses with canopy walls covered with clay were found, externally decorated with geometric motifs engraved in fresco (Ancient Bronze). The Somogyvár-Vinkovci culture dates back to the same period (early 19th century BC), which the recent excavation of Vinkovci allowed to attribute to a nomadic warrior population that succeeded that of Zók. The numerous archaeological sites (settlements and storerooms) belonging to the cultures of Balaton-Lasinja (Zalavár-Basasziget), of Ottomány (Rétkōzberencs), of Gyulavarsánd (Kōtegyán), of Nagyrév (Diósd) and of Vatya (Szazhalombatta). In this period it was sometimes practiced, among the Ottomány and Gyulavarsánd cultures, the custom of placing miniature clay chariots in burials, already widespread in the most ancient Mesopotamian cultures. There are also many testimonies relating to the end of the Bronze Age, when invasions by Western populations determined the end of the Vatya culture and the establishment of a transition period (16th -14th century) called Koszider, characterized by desperate accumulation of treasures (such as that of Ocsa, belonging to a woman of high rank). At the end of this period the stable settlement of the invading peoples gave rise to the culture of the tumulus tombs, which lasted until the 12th century (necropolis of Jánoshida, Budapest, Nagyberki-Szalacska and the Koszider region). Less considerable is the evidence of the beginning of the Iron Age (settlement of Sopron-Krantackerii, necropolis of Vaszar), which however intensify at the end of the same period, when the tribes of the Scythians (7th-6th century BC) poured into the Hungary The skill of this people in metalworking is evidenced by the rich grave goods that accompanied the burials of people of high rank (Mezőtúr). In recent decades, useful information has also been collected to shed light on the relationships between the Scythians and the Celtic populations, which arrived in the Hungary during the 5th century BC: the necropolis of Orosháza-Gyopáros deserves a particular mention, characterized by the coexistence of Scythian and Celtic objects (5th to 2nd century BC). It seems that the influence of Scythian funerary customs also determined the Celtic use of chariot burials, of which we have an example in Borsad, near Arnót (late 2nd-first half of the 1st century BC). The problem of continuity between the La Tène D epoch and the Roman period has also been recently addressed, conducting excavation campaigns in the Kapos valley, in the Zala region, near the fort of Solva (Esztergom), in the territory of the Boi (in Arrabona and Ad Statuas) and above all in Réti Fōldek near Szakály. On the basis of these investigations, it was possible to suppose the existence of two different modes of evolution of the settlements, capable of adapting to Roman civilization (as happens in the territory of the Scordisci), or of maintaining the protohistoric customs (settlements of the Szakály type).

As part of the intense archaeological activities aimed at the study of Pannonia in Roman times, it is possible to identify two research orientations, which target distinct and equally important areas: historical research on the limes and the analysis of internal settlements. The extensive archaeological surveys carried out at military and civil structures built in correspondence with the defensive line of the limes have given exceptional results, from both a quantitative and a qualitative point of view: here we will limit ourselves to listing the most significant ones. In Pilismarót (Castra ad Herculem), on the left bank of the Danube, the main structures of an advanced military fortification (burgus): a square tower, a U-shaped courtyard overlooked by the baths, a second courtyard surrounded by residential buildings and two ceramic kilns. During the numerous excavation campaigns carried out by the Fülep in Nagitétény (Campona, along the stretch of limes between Aquincumand Matrica) the porta principalis right and the porta decumana of the Roman castrum were brought to light. In Dunaujvaros (Intercisa) the walls, the signal towers, the road that ran along the limes, the canabae, an atelier have been excavatedfor the processing of the bone and some areas intended for sepulchral use. Adony (Vetus Salina) turned out to be one of the few sites from which it is possible to draw some consideration regarding the proto-imperial arrangement of the army. The studies carried out there, in fact, made it possible to date the wooden phase of the military settlement to the years 70-80 AD. In Százhalombatta-Dunafüred (Matrica), Kekesd (in the territory of Baranya, near Sopianae) and Somodorpuszta (near Komárom) extensive necropolis of the imperial age. The archaeological activity carried out in Aquincum deserves particular mention, where, year after year, the knowledge of the ancient city has grown. At the Arpád bridge sections of the walls and moats of the ancient legionary camp and part of a residential area have been excavated; two watch towers have been discovered in via Lajos; in front of the Aquincum museum a section of the walls and the insulae of the civil settlement was found. Furthermore, in the course of numerous excavation campaigns, an attempt was made to determine the extent of the military camp and the plan of the annexed buildings (praetoriumthermae maiores). In various points of the city, remains of roads, necropolis, private buildings, shops have been identified.

Also important civilian Pannonian cities have been the subject of regular excavation campaigns: in Scarbantia (Sopron) parts of the walls and gates of the ancient city have been brought to light, as well as some areas destined for sepulchral use; in Savaria (Szombathely) we note the discovery of the temple of Isis, with an adjoining sacrificial place; in Gorsium (Tać) the vicinity of the forum, a late antique necropolis, two suburban villas (rich in sculptures, minor objects, inscriptions) and a Christian basilica were investigated; in Sopianae (Pécs) some chamber tombs and a necropolis have been discovered, as well as an early Christian mausoleum and cemetery. A new Roman settlement has been identified and excavated in Budatétény. Among the numerous rustic settlements highlighted in recent years, the villa of Keszthely-Fenékpuszta should be mentioned. It is a fortified settlement, equipped with a mighty wall with circular towers, within which numerous buildings have been identified, identified with the manor house, the baths, some smaller houses, warehouses, granaries, stables, shops: al above them a necropolis and two Christian basilicas were subsequently founded.

Hungary Archaeology

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