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Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Settlement of the Southeastern Alpine Area in the Early Middle Ages

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
6.02.00  Humanities  Archaeology   

Code Science Field
H340  Humanities  Archaeology 

Code Science Field
6.01  Humanities  History and Archaeology 
Keywords
archaeology, early middle ages, settlement, south-eastern Alpine region
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (6)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  09029  Mateja Belak  Archaeology  Researcher  2018 - 2022  195 
2.  51147  PhD Andrej Magdič  Archaeology  Researcher  2018 - 2022  59 
3.  15298  PhD Zvezdana Modrijan  Archaeology  Researcher  2018 - 2022  81 
4.  09461  PhD Andrej Pleterski  Archaeology  Retired researcher  2018 - 2022  603 
5.  38265  PhD Jernej Rihter  Humanities  Researcher  2018 - 2022  55 
6.  27737  PhD Benjamin Štular  Archaeology  Head  2018 - 2022  263 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0618  Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts  Ljubljana  5105498000  63,160 
2.  2316  Institute for the protection of Cultural Heritage of Slovenia  Ljubljana  1423215  3,894 
Abstract
Abstract. The aim of this project is to write a synthetic study of the settlement of the south-eastern Alpine region in the early middle ages (circa 500 – 1000 AD). This will be achieved by chronological and spatial analysis of the settlement phases for the entire region and three micro-regional studies that will address selected questions on economy, society and culture. Research questions. Early medieval archaeology of the south-eastern Alpine region bases its sources on cemeteries, hoards and settlements. The key to a better understanding of this period is a throughout knowledge of all types of archaeological sites. This is mostly hindered by poor knowledge of settle-ment sites due to low archaeological visibility; this can be traced 1) to the scarcity of finds in compari-son to sites from other periods; and 2) to the settlement continuity of many sites until this day. None-theless, in the past two decades the number of known settlement sites increased significantly, mainly due to large-scale rescue excavations. However, less than a quarter of the newly discovered settle-ments have been analysed and published. Poor knowledge of settlement can therefore be identified as the major problem of early medieval archaeology in the south-eastern Alpine region. But for the first-time sufficient data on settlements is available to conduct a research that will remedy this situation, which is the aim of this project. Goals: To fulfil the proposed aim the project pursues two goals: 1) analysis of early medieval settle-ment in the south-eastern Alpine region focussing on detecting spatial and chronological changes in settlement sites; 2) analysis of three micro-regions chosen to address selected key socio-economic topics relevant to the whole region: a) genesis of an župa (territorial unit); b) genesis of an early medi-eval principality; and c) modes and forms of transition of the early medieval administrative structures into the high medieval feudal system. Scientific innovation. The most important result of the project will be the first synthetic analysis of early medieval settlement of entire south-eastern Alpine region; – without restraints by present nation-al borders. The results of the micro-regional analyses will bear importance on wider understanding of the early medieval re-settlement processes and the contacts with autochthonous populations. In addi-tion, our beyond-the-state-of-the-art tools and algorithms for GIS and airborne LiDAR will be further developed. Methods. The main data source for the regional analysis is the ZBIVA-database and web application containing all published early medieval sites. Within the project this database will be supplemented with data from unpublished excavation reports in Slovenia and Austria and subjected to spatial analy-sis. Micro-regional studies are based on site-catchment analysis consisting of airborne LiDAR data analysis and retrograde analysis of the cultivated surfaces. This approach enables us to contextualise archaeological data in their physical environment, which conveys a new perspective of the physical landscape. Instead of being treated as dots on a blank map settlements and cemeteries are embedded in landscape filled with path-networks, field system and natural features. Research team. The Austrian-Slovenian project team (project lead Dr. Benjamin Štular, ZRC SAZU) brings together expertise in airborne LiDAR data analysis and archaeological research at the transition from the Late Roman times to the high-medieval period, especially in the south-eastern Alpine region. Prof. Manfred Lehner will be project leader of the Austrian part. The research team members have been meticulously selected regardless of the affiliation in order to best tackle the methods chosen. All researchers are specialists in early medieval or late antiquity archaeology of the region. In addition, each is a specialist for a particular method or micro-region.
Significance for science
The most relevant result of the project with the biggest potential impact in science will be the synthetic study of the settlement of the south-eastern Alpine region in the early middle ages. This will be the first such synthesis since 1979 that will significantly improve our understanding of the early medieval period in the region and will be influential for the entire field of the archaeology of early middle ages in Europe. Regionally, the chronology of the settlement and cultural "melting pot" processes will be recognised for the first time. The ZBIVA web service is a guarantee for the sustainability and reusability of the project's results. ZBIVA will enable any early medieval archaeologist, regardless of their access to scientific infrastructure, to conduct cutting-edge research. In addition, within the project we will continue to develop beyond-the-state-of-the-art tools, algorithms and methods for GIS and airborne LIDAR data analysis. The project will also benefit to the cultural and national awareness in both Slovenia and Austria. National awareness in the two countries is based, amongst other, on the interpretation of the early middle ages. It is of vital importance, therefore, that the scientific results are arrived at by equal partners from Slovenia and Austria. Only in this way the credibility of the results will have beneficial influences on the persisting discords. The science conducted by researchers from just one country is all to often rejected as biased.
Significance for the country
The most relevant result of the project with the biggest potential impact in science will be the synthetic study of the settlement of the south-eastern Alpine region in the early middle ages. This will be the first such synthesis since 1979 that will significantly improve our understanding of the early medieval period in the region and will be influential for the entire field of the archaeology of early middle ages in Europe. Regionally, the chronology of the settlement and cultural "melting pot" processes will be recognised for the first time. The ZBIVA web service is a guarantee for the sustainability and reusability of the project's results. ZBIVA will enable any early medieval archaeologist, regardless of their access to scientific infrastructure, to conduct cutting-edge research. In addition, within the project we will continue to develop beyond-the-state-of-the-art tools, algorithms and methods for GIS and airborne LIDAR data analysis. The project will also benefit to the cultural and national awareness in both Slovenia and Austria. National awareness in the two countries is based, amongst other, on the interpretation of the early middle ages. It is of vital importance, therefore, that the scientific results are arrived at by equal partners from Slovenia and Austria. Only in this way the credibility of the results will have beneficial influences on the persisting discords. The science conducted by researchers from just one country is all to often rejected as biased.
Most important scientific results Interim report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results
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