EÖTVÖS LORÁND UNIVERSITY FACULTY OF HUMANITIES SCIENCES OF HISTORY DOCTORAL SCHOOL ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROGRAM. PhD DISSERTATION JUDIT P. - PDF

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EÖTVÖS LORÁND UNIVERSITY FACULTY OF HUMANITIES SCIENCES OF HISTORY DOCTORAL SCHOOL ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROGRAM PhD DISSERTATION JUDIT P. BARNA THE FORMATION OF THE LENGYEL CULTURE IN SOUTH-WESTERN TRANSDANUBIA

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EÖTVÖS LORÁND UNIVERSITY FACULTY OF HUMANITIES SCIENCES OF HISTORY DOCTORAL SCHOOL ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROGRAM PhD DISSERTATION JUDIT P. BARNA THE FORMATION OF THE LENGYEL CULTURE IN SOUTH-WESTERN TRANSDANUBIA SUMMARY BUDAPEST, GOALS AND SOURCE MATERIALS OF THE DISSERTATION Since the discovery of the first site of the Transdanubian Sopot culture, Becsehely I., it has been apparent both for Hungarian and international researchers that this territory played a role of primary importance in the formation of the Lengyel culture at the beginning of the 5 th millennia BC. As it is generally viewed, the two main components in the formation of the culture were the Central European (Transdanubian) Linear Band Pottery culture (LBC) and the Sopot culture. It has also been accepted that there were genetic continuity between the LBC and the Lengyel cultures, in the first instance on the grounds of the high scale coincidence of the territories of both cultures; even though no factual pieces of evidence of the continuity have been available. Transdanubia, South-Western Slovakia and the western part of Burgenland compose the territory of the emergence of the Lengyel culture where, during the period prior to the emergence of the Lengyel culture, different territorial groups of the LBC had settled: the Keszthely, the Music Note, the Zselíz groups and the Šarka style. The presence of the Transdanubian Sopot culture on the grounds of the settlement pattern earlier thought to be loose and dispersed seemed to be hardly at all correlated with that of the LBC, but at the same time the high scale similarity found in the material culture proved that there was direct correlation between the Sopot and the Lengyel cultures. Accordingly, the genesis of the Lengyel culture was considered as a process taking place on the multicultural substrate of the LBC groups in which the Sopot culture played a catalyser role causing and inspiring the transformations. The chronological situation and the role of the Malo Korenovo style pottery originating from Croatia, which appeared in Transdanubia for the first time on the site at Becsehely I., were not clean-cut. For two subsequent chronological phases in the formational process first Slovakian, later also Hungarian researchers used the auxiliary notions Vor- and Proto-, (Pre- or Prä-)lengyel. The creation of new terminology was in part motivated by the fact that the transition process from the Middle to the Late Neolithic could not be described by conventional concepts of archaeological culture, and in part also because of the paucity of archaeological sources from the period. The theory that the formation of the Lengyel culture was comprehended as a process that began during the Vorlengyel horizon and end with the appearance of the early classical Lengyel culture (Lengyel I) was hypothesized to compensate the lack of sources due to the scarcity of few known sites. Compared to the status quo outlined above the results of large-surface excavations beginning at the end of the 1990 s in Zala county brought sweeping changes in this research area. The find assemblages on the sites at Sormás-Török-földek, Sormás- Mántai-dűlő, Petrivente-Újkúti-dűlő and Becsehely (I)-Bükkaljai-dűlő dated to the turn of the Middle and Late Neolithic, which were unearthed during the works preceding the construction of the M7 motorway provided an opportunity to redraw the picture formed earlier on the basis of sporadic data about the Transdanubian Sopot culture. The reevaluation of the Sopot culture as one of the basic components of the Lengyel culture 1 made it also necessary to revise of the earlier opinions and statements made about the formation of the Lengyel culture. This was even more motivated by the fact that on the site at Sormás-Török-földek, besides the find material from the Sopot culture, the find material from the formative phase of the Lengyel culture was also found. The two sites at Sormás are located in immediate vicinity of each other; the Mántai stream composes their common border. The goal of the dissertation is to try to clarify the role of the Sopot culture in the formation of the Lengyel culture based on find assemblages and the results of the excavations made on the sites at Sormás-Török-földek, Sormás-Mántai-dűlő and Esztergályhorváti, which provide composing the main sources of the dissertation. The concrete form of this is the evaluation of the common features of both cultures. The developmental correlations are principally present in two areas: in the settlement layout and in the find material, so the comparison of these is the major goal among other goals of the dissertation. Though the altogether three ditch-systems excavated on the two Sormás sites made parts of the settlement layout, they also necessitated independent comparison, as a result of which the period at the turn of the Middle and Late Neolithic could be approached also from a new aspect. The monographic processing of the find material was not targeted in the dissertation. Due to the nature of the source material the question of the mortuary customs was studied tangentially only. A large amount of stone materials was found on both of the Sormás sites, the examination of which contributed to a great extant to the clarification the communication systems of the Sormás settlements thus complementing the result acquired by the examination the ceramic finds imported to the site. In order to get to know the sites in a more complex way, apart from stone and animal bone finds samples from the filling material and charcoal were also collected systematically during the excavations to establish a starting point for a possible reconstruction of the environment. Based on the results of the different natural scientific investigations such as the investigation of the provenience of the stone materials, the radiocarbon dating, the archaeozoological and anthropological studies and the environmental-historical studies, a comprehensive and detailed picture was gained about the historical events and their natural environment in South-Western Transdanubia at the beginning of the 5 th millennia BC. In the light of all these, grounded conclusions could be drawn on the time, place, mode and nature of the formation of the Lengyel culture and the directions of the spread of the formative phase. During the first phase of the excavations large-surface excavations were performed on the sites at Sormás in 2002 and 2003 the goals of the dissertation were formulated, and the source find assemblages were collected in However, in 2005 and 2006, unexpectedly, new excavations were carried out on the sites. The new excavation in 2005 on the site at Sormás-Mántai-dűlő augmented the find material only to smaller extent, but on the Török-földek site both the excavated area and the find material were doubled. The new results yielded important, new pieces of information especially regarding the settlement layout, which altered the proportions of the different 2 kinds of find assemblages that composed the main sources for the dissertation, for this instead of a detailed comparative analysis of the pottery the analysis of the settlement layout and the enclosures was brought into prominence. Especially the house types of the formative phase of the Lengyel culture was considered to be of high importance since the house types of the formative phase were found, in Sormás-Török-földek for the very first time. The dissertation did not offer sufficient and appropriate framework for a detailed pottery analysis. It became obvious that a simultaneous, comparative analysis and evaluation of the pottery assemblages from both Sormás sites according to standardized criteria would make it possible to establish a fine-scaled internal chronological system of the late Sopot and the formative phase of the Lengyel culture, the elaboration of which should be subject of an independent, large-scale study. In the framework of the present dissertation, apart from the pottery assemblages that made it possible to separate the distinct habitation phases, we have studied the imported pottery finds and finds related to ritual activities were also studied. In this latter respect, both Sormás sites were particularly rich. EFFECTCS Sormás-Mántai-dűlő. A long-lasting settlement of the TLPC existed on this site, which was established already in the elder stage of the culture however still survived in the late Zselíz phase. It was followed by an extensive, enclosed, typically flat, single-layer settlement of the Sopot culture. Based on some settlement features of the Sopot culture superposing each other, one can presume a longer duration of the settlement without any interruption, which is confirmed also by the uniform characteristics of the pottery. There were rows outlining more than 30 houses or house sites standing scattered sideby-side on the site. The orientation of the houses was toward North South; North, Northwest South, Southeast and Northwest- Southeast, and no hierarchical difference could be observed among the houses. In some cases pits dug around the house sites outlined certain sites for houses. All the houses did not existed simultaneously, the nucleus of the settlement could move several times during the lifetime of the village. All the dwellings without exception were above-ground, they were wattle-and-daub structures built of different sized piles,, with an oblong ground plan. The architectural traditions of the LPC are reflected in the structures of the houses. The Sopot village during most of its life was enclosed by a simple, circular ditch with a V-shaped profile, the entrance of it was indicated by the discontinuity of the ditch. As for the general sight of the settlement a lane through the gate must have been of basic importance, which divided the settlement into two parts. Some sites of hypothetical houses interrupted the lane track which suggests that some of these features were not built at the time when the gate of the enclosure were used. From this it may also be presumed that the settlement existed for a longer period of time. In a later stage of its existence the settlement was extended over the enclosed area. Regarding the role of the enclosure it could be mainly a surrounding ditch, it had no defensive function. Its layout never had a complete circular 3 form, it did not continue in the eastern part of the settlement, so the settlement was never fortified by the ditch. In the foreground of the gate an extremely large pit was excavated, which was used for clay mining, and which was presumably created simultaneously with the construction of the enclosure. Apart from the function of the enclosure as a surrounding ditch, its sacral, symbolic role can be presumed on the basis of finds related to rites (pig jaw and bucranium, anthropomorphic figurines) and the orientation of the gate, which is the same as the orientation of gate No. 8 of Enclosure N. II on the site at Sormás-Török-földek. The astronomically oriented gates on the two sites suggest the use of common architectural principles and it is a shared festure with the Lengyel culture. The extremely large pit used for clay mining in the foreground of the gate is another similarity, the analogues of which can be found on the site at Sormás-Török-földek related with both enclosures. The orientation of the gate excavated on the Mántai-dűlő site suggests that a part of these architectural principles may already have been known in the Sopot culture except for the strictly regulated roundel-shape ditch. Several pieces of imported pottery from the Vinča and the Zselíz III cultures were also found. The find contexts of the Malo Korenovo-type pottery fragments could not be interpreted clearly, they were found both with the findings of the Keszthely-group of the TLPC as well as the Sopot cultures. The life of the settlement on the site at Mántai-dűlő came to an end earlier than that of these settlement excavated on the neighboring Török-földek site. The fact that the settlement was used in some way during also the lifetime of the formative phase of the Lengyel culture is proved by a fragment of a Sé-type anthropomorphic figurine which was found as a stray find, in a secondary position. Two main house types could be differentiated: structures composed of holes dug for piles and posts (type A) and structures composed of foundation trenches (type B). Some more groups, altogether 11 variation within the main types were differentiated. The high number of variations arose from the incomplete layouts of the houses. Amongst the ground plans firmly recognized there were big, timber frame longhouses composed of 4 x 3 lines of postholes (with two more variations), big or medium size timber frame longhouses, composed of 3 x 3 lines of postholes (with four more variations), building sites encircled by ditches and structures composed of foundation trenches (with two more variations). Sormás-Török-földek. On the site following a short habitation during the Early and Middle Neolithic (1 st and 2 nd habitation phases) the 3 rd habitation phase represented by the Sopot culture was the longest one. By this time there was established an extended and long-lived, enclosed settlement, with more sub-phases, which lived partly contemporaneously with the settlement in the Mántai-dűlő site, but contrary to it, it experienced the beginning of the formative phase of the Lengyel culture. We could differentiate three habitation sub-phases, by the determination of which beyond analysing the find assemblage we started from the diverse building phases of Enclosure No. II. and the analyses the relationship between the settlement layout and the houses. Habitation sub-phase 3a1. The existence of this habitation phase apart from the evidence privided by the find assemblage is proven first of all by the earliest building phase of the 4 ditch with a V-profile however as for the dwelling houses there are only few, uncertain pieces of evidence available. The features from which the Korenovo-style potteries accompanied by the findings of the Sopot culture originate are classified to this subphase from. The antecedent of Enclosure No. II can be linked to this earliest Sopot habitation sub-phase. The bottom of this straight-line ditch-section is pointed, that is contrary to the earliest, hollow-bottom-ditch on the site at Sormás-Török-földek, established during the TLPC habitation it already has V-profile. This was probably a foundation ditch for a palisade. Regarding the evolution of the enclosures later, it is of great importance that in this building phase the ground-plan of the enclosure is not yet a regular round shape, but the at same time its profile is typical, it is V-shaped; like the enclosures of the Sopot culture excavated in Petrivente and Becsehely I. There was also a gate in this building phase, which is indicated by an earthen bridge across the ditch. The outlines of this ditch occurred deeper than the arched ditches in Enclosure No. II, and the gate No. 3 which cut across these ditches in this direction; all these also prove that subphase 3a1 antedates sub-phase 3a2, during which these latter ones were established. Habitation sub-phase 3a2. The final arrangement of Enclosure No. II may be dated to habitation sub-phase 3a2. It is proven on the one hand by the stratigraphic relationship between the gate documented on the straight ditch-section and gate No. 3 and, on the other hand, the corrected, regular round shape ground plan. The straight ditch section built during sub-phase 3a1 was inlayed into the final ground plan. The renovations documented in several places and the corrections indicating smaller and larger corrections commemorate the memory of large-scale building activities and the arrangement of the regular round shape ground plan. Enclosure No. II in its final form was composed by two, slightly oval ditches running in line with each other, which had similar depth, width and V-shaped profiles. Several bridges constructed of earth or wood crossed the ditches. Its external diameter was 276 meters. Gate No. 3 and some other gates outlined by several similar constructed earthen bridges belonged to this building phase: gate No. 2 towards north and gate No. 1 toward west. Two extremely large pits used for clay mining also belonged to this habitation phase. There were altogether three of this kind of features found on the site: apart from the ones mentioned already there was one more example in the foreground of the southern gate of Enclosure No. I. They could be linked to the construction of the enclosures or their gates, or to the arrangement of a fortification. This assumption is supported also by an observation made on the Mántai-dűlő site. Considering the relative chronology it is of outstanding importance that the extremely large pit used for clay mining, which belongs to the gate No. 1 (the southern gate) of Enclosure No. I was in superposition with the ditches of Enclosure No. II. This vertical stratigraphic condition is a clear piece of evidence for the fact that Enclosure No. I is younger than Enclosure No. II. The extremely large size pit used for clay mining, which belongs to gate No. 2 of Enclosure No. II almost intersects the outer ditch of Enclosure No. II, thus providing horizontal stratigraphic evidence for the fact that these two features could not be contemporaneous. It must be stressed that in the case of Enclosure No. II references still cannot be made to regular circular enclosure 5 (roundel), although several elements of this form a regular or almost regular circular ground-plan, ditches with V-profile and partly astronomically oriented gates had already appeared. The deviation from the roundels is indicated mostly by the relationship with the settlement, and in this context, by its function: all the houses of the Sopot settlement, in all of the habitation phases, remained inside the ditches. The typical house type of this habitation sub-phase is the above-ground, pile structure house standing on a building site encircled by ditches and pits, at the southern end of which there was also a smaller building which presumably had an economic function, constituting together a household cluster. A fragment of a seated anthropomorphic figurine, which was painted red, was found in one of the ditches encircling a building site of a dwelling-house: it is a flat-bodied figurine with its arms kept bounded under the breasts represented by small knobs, which can be considered as one of the leading types of find in the Sopot culture. As for the houses, a certain alignment can be observed in every single habitation phase to the lane running through the gate used in given subphases: during habitation sub-phase 3a2 they were aligned to the approximately N, NW- S,SE oriented lane running through gate No. 2; their longitudinal axis is parallel with the direction of the lane. All these provide clear evidence for the fact that the enclosure, the gates and the settlement were built up together as one single, coherent architectural unit. Sub-phases 3a1 and 3a2 are closely correlated; there is only a slight chronological difference between them. The Sopot settlement reached its maximum intensity during sub-phase 3a2: the highest number of contemporaneous dwelling-houses could stand in the settlement during this sub-phase, and a smaller building with an economic function may have belonged to some of them. The double circular enclosure had been built by then, and there were at least three contemporaneous gates opened through it (gates No. 1, 2 and 3). Habitation sub-phase 3 b. This habitation phase is the continuation of the previous one; it is the uninterrupted survival of the Sopot settlement. Enclosure No. II is was maintained according as manifested by multiple renovations, the signs of w
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