The Bronze Age Village.

Archaeological Site of Colle di Berta at Montegrotto Terme

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The remains of a large settlement, in use between the seventeenth and twelfth centuries B.C. (Middle and Late Bronze Age) are located at the southern slopes of Monte Castello. Read More
Archaeological Site of Colle di Berta at Montegrotto Terme

Archaeological Site of Colle di Berta at Montegrotto Terme: the remains of a large settlement, in use between the seventeenth and twelfth centuries B.C. (Middle and Late Bronze Age) are located at the southern slopes of Monte Castello. The top of the hill is dominated by the so-called “Tower of Berta”, hence the popular name of the height as Berta’s Hill. The tower was built on the “Castle Montagnon”, already documented in 1100, which was in turn built on an existing structure from the Roman period. The information on the Bronze Age village does not derive from systematic excavations, but from casual discoveries. The first dates back to the decade 1960-1970, during agricultural work; substantial recoveries of surfaced material followed in 1971, in 1985 and again in unspecified dates, during plowing and expansion works of the Municipal Cemetery. The data on the medieval castle are based on written sources and on what was observed in a survey in 2011.

The articulation of the village built on the slopes of Monte Castello is unknown due to the non-systematic type of researches; the presence of an ancient village in the area is, however, certain considering the material findings, such as at least “one beaten earth floor” and numerous objects, including vessel fragments with horned and straight-cylinder handles, terracotta spindle-whorls, flint objects and bronze fragments. The materials suggest that the settlement may have already been active in the seventeenth and fourteenth centuries B.C. (Middle Bronze Age), and that it flourished between the fourteenth and twelfth centuries B.C. (Recent and Final Bronze Age). Judging from the extension, it had to be a village of great importance. Many of the anomalies identified from remote sensing observations may be the track of activities related to the development of the village. The location of the village at the base of the hill responds to a specific settlement choice which is typical of those centuries: renouncing in part to the natural defenses, which instead would have been granted by a higher position, the inhabitants could simultaneously exploit the resources of the hill and of the wet plain. In fact the hill slopes offered ample space for cultivation, since the soil was fertile thanks to its volcanic nature; the plain, however, was well suited for the practices of farming, grazing and hay production.

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