Archaeology

The beginnings of Spycimierz go back to very old days. The village originated from an early medieval stronghold, referred to in historical sources since the 12th century, which is nowadays called Górka Kasztelańska. It was at the same time the centre of administrative and economic organisation for open settlements situated nearby.

The first surface survey in the area of the early medieval fortified settlement identified here was conducted in the interwar period under the instruction of R. Jakimowicz (1923) and J. Skoiński (1935). After World War II, a surface survey was conducted by J. Kamińska, who found that there had been a cone-shaped settlement here. ‘It is situated in Łęg Baliński on the Warta River, between the actual bed of this river and the backwater in the area raised above the local meadows, to the south of the road from Spycimierz to Uniejów. According to J. Kamińska, it included the stronghold proper, surrounded with a moat and a rampart, and a small settlement beyond the stronghold walls. The cone reminded an ellipse, whose axes were even 60 and 40 m long, and its maximum height was not more than 4 m. Verification surveys in this field, including excavations, were conducted in the 1960s by a team of archaeologists under the guidance of A. Nadolski and T. Poklewski. Detailed analyses of the settlement in the bend of the Warta River oxbow made it possible to complement the former views through the identification of the fortified settlement dating back to an earlier period. […] This confirmed the hypothesis about two development phases of the stronghold of Spycimierz in the Middle Ages. The first phase was the development of a ringfort, which was subsequently levelled and replaced by a cone-shaped settlement; today, we can observe the relics of the latter. The first phase settlement had an outer diameter of around 135 m, and it was fortified with a wooden and earth grid rampart with a height of 4-5 m and the footing width of 6.5 m. The fragments of pottery, animal bones and fragments of decorations discovered within the former courtyard date back to the period from the 12th to the early 14th centuries,’ wrote Tomasz Figlus in his article “Development of the rural layout of Spycimierz against the history of settlement in the light of geographical, historical and archaeological research” (“Biuletyn Uniejowski”, volume no. 4/2015).

Thanks to the archaeological research conducted in 1962-1963, Spycimierz is recognised to be a region where even prehistoric settlement developed. In the vicinity of the village, fragments of dishes of the Funnelbeaker culture dating back to 3300-2500 B.C. were discovered. ‘A graveyard of people of the Lusatian culture dating back to the Hallstatt period (early Iron Age) was discovered. Moreover, 272 urn graves and 11 pit graves were identified dating back to the period between the second half of the 2nd and the 4th centuries A.D., i.e. related to the Przeworsk culture. At that time, the development of settlement in dry shrubs in the period of Roman influence, in the south-western region of Spycimierz, was favoured by the location of the settlement near the so-called Amber Road’ (cited as above).