A week ago, the excavation of the Institute of Archaeology of the ELTE BTK in Pilisszentiván ended. The excavation was carried out over two weeks in a picturesque setting, with the help of enthusiastic volunteers. During this work, treasures and buildings of a Roman village were discovered.
According to the ELTE Institute’s blog, Ásónyomon, the site is unrivalled in Hungary, as the number of Roman settlements identified in a forest environment is negligible. The village is said to be located in the north-western hinterland of Aquincum, in the surroundings of the Hársas spring, on a natural terrace. The site was identified by Tamás Marlok in 2009 and was explored between 2014 and 2018.
This year, the events picked up again, as the Pázmány Péter Catholic University carried out a ground penetrating radar survey with the help of local government funds. Moreover, Lumen Drone Services carried out an airborne laser surface scanning (LiDAR) at the site at its own expense, under the guidance of Bence Simon.
The aim of this year’s excavation was to clarify the layout of the buildings identified along the ascending road between 2014 and 2018 and the chronology of the settlement, Ásonyomon writes. During the excavation at the end of October, 166 square metres were probed. Just over 350 square metres of clearing and minor demolition work was carried out to determine the alignment of previously excavated walls.
Three buildings excavated in the Pilis
The three buildings excavated were not residential but agricultural, as only a few roof tiles were found. Due to erosion or excavation, the only remains documented are the unbonded stone layers of the foundations. For a similar reason, the only walkway found was in the western building.
The largest building, the central one, was originally a rectangular one-third to two-thirds section, typical of Roman rural settlements, with two rooms added to the north. In the corner of the south wing, a heating/firing furnace with limestone and a crushed ceramic layer was found.
The excavation also probed the surface of the road, which is about 5-6 metres wide. No road surface was found apart from scattered archaeological finds.
Real ancient Roman treasures unearthed
“The much-anticipated Celts were not identified during the excavation, but very early, hand-shaped, apparently without archaeological context, indigenous vessels dating to the turn of the 1-2th century were found under the foundation level of the central building,” the report says.
They add that they also found a rare seal intact, indicating a pottery workshop. Fragments of a glass bottle and sealed Pannonian ceramics indicated links with Aquincum. The excavations suggest that the rural settlement was prosperous from the Roman occupation until the end of the 3rd century.
As we reported a few days ago, the remains of buildings last seen before WWII were found in Buda Castle – see photos and read more HERE. In September, we reported that a Roman sarcophagus was found in Western Hungary – see details and photos HERE.
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