The international research team of archaeologists composed of the experts from the Institute of Archaeology (SAS) and the Christian Albrecht’s Universität zu Kiel has researched one of the biggest Central-European settlement agglomerations dated to the Neolithic. The team has been excavating the site for 7 seasons. The settlement existed between 5250–4950 B. C. The three discovered settlements spread over the area of around 50 ha. One of them was fortified with one, maybe even two ditches in the last phase of settlement. This situation is very rare in Central Europe during the Neolithic. Geophysical research has revealed more than 300 long houses. The archaeologists estimate that 50-70 houses were used contemporarily in individual chronological phases.
Already in the past seasons, regular graves around and in the ditch were discovered, but the archaeologists also unearthed skeletons thrown in the bottom of the ditch. This year, an accumulation of human bones was uncovered in the trench near one of the entrances, from which at least 35 skeletons were recovered. The bodies lay in different positions – on the back, on the stomach, on the side, some were found in the stretched “frog position.” All individuals were without head, only one child skull and one mandible were discovered. Peri-mortem fractures were recorded on some of the bones.
Only few accompanying findings were found at the bodies. An interesting found is represented by drilled human teeth, which could have been a component part of some amulets. So far it seems that there were many adolescents and young individuals buried in the trench.
Now, the international interdisciplinary team is about to perform a set of additional analyses which will help us to solve issues such as whether the individuals were intentionally killed, if they were victims of an epidemic event, represent the remains of cult ceremonies, whether they had some mutual genetic links to each other, if their heads were severed intentionally (cut off, chopped off) or post-mortem. Consequently, we will be able to solve other questions regarding social classification and emerging social differentiation in the conditions of early agricultural societies. And maybe we will be able to reconstruct the way the Neolithic society worked and reveal the reason of the fall of this extensive agglomeration.
Authors of text: Ivan Cheben, Zuzana Hukeľová, Matej Ruttkay (Archeologický ústav SAV, v. v. i.), Martin Furholt, Maria Wunderlich (Christian-Albrechts-Universität Kiel)
Head of archaeological research representing the Institute of Archeology (SAS), Nitra: PhDr. Ivan Cheben, CSc.
Head of archaeological research representing the Institute of Pre- and Protohistoric Archaeology, Christian Albrecht’s Universität zu Kiel: Prof. Dr. Martin Furholt.
The research is carried out in the framework of projects DFG (CRC 1266), APVV a VEGA and with support of the Institute of Archeology (SAS)
On 30th of June 2022, a ceremony was held at the SAS Congress Centre in Smolenice, where the Slovak Academy of Sciences awards for outstanding achievements in scientific research, international scientific and technical cooperation and popularisation of science were presented.
The Slovak Academy of Sciences award for popularization of science and social applications of science was awarded by prof. RNDr. Pavol Šajgalík, DrSc., the President of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, to: PhDr. Karol Pieta, DrSc., doc. PhDr. Matej Ruttkay, CSc., Mgr. Tereza Štolcová, PhD., Mgr. Zbigniew Robak, PhD., from the Institute of Archaeology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, and to Róbert Benkovits, Marína Juríčková and Jozef Chudík from RTVS (Radio and Television of Slovakia) for the series of popular scientific documentary films “Slovak Archaeologists,” which in an accessible way brought to the public significant Slovak and foreign archaeological sites mapped by Slovak experts.
All documentaries about Slovak Archaeologists can be viewed in the RTVS archive:
The Institute of Archaeology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (founded in 1939) is a modern workplace that currently employs more than 70 professional and scientific staff – archaeologists, but also colleagues from several collaborating natural science disciplines. For more information about the department, see www. sav.sk/Science groups/Historical sciences/Institute of Archaeology; www. archeol.sav.sk.
The Institute is an independent education centre for three (Constantine The Philosopher University in Nitra) and four-year (Comenius university, Bratislava) studies in external and internal mode in the field of archaeology in conjunction with several Slovak universities. Upon successful graduation, the doctoral student receives the title “Philosophiae doctor” (PhD.) Currently, internal doctoral students receive a tax-free scholarship of 807 € per month during the first part of study and 940 € per month after a successful dissertation examination. Doctoral students supervised by renowned supervisors have good working conditions at the institute and are usually immediately involved in research projects, which improves their communication in the research area, work mobility and material and technical equipment.
The thesis topics offered are based on the needs of contemporary archaeological research in the Central European area and can be a good start to systematic scientific work for their future researchers.
On May 14th–17th
2019 the jubilee 20th annual conference about the Late Iron Age in
Central Europe Kelti / The Celts / Die Kelten 2019 took place.
The event, organized with the support by SAS Institute of Archaeology, Slovak Research and Development Agency within the contract No. 14-0842, project VEGA No. 2/0001/18, Slovak Archaeological Society by SAS, and Anton Točík Foundation, have been hosted in Stará Lesná in SAS Congress centre Academia.
58 researchers on the La Tène Period from Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary, Germany, Rumania, France, and Australia participated. The scientific program of the conference was enriched by the excursion focused on the monuments of the Spiš region.
Institute of Archaeology
of the Slovak Academy of Sciences invites for the lecture by Zuzana Chovanec, Ph.D., U.S. Fulbright
Scholar – From
poppies in the field to slumberous dreams: Investigating the history of the
opium poppy in Central Europe and beyond
The opium poppy, Papaver somniferum L., represents one of the most widely used psychoactive and medicinal substances in human history. The fact that it is a significant agricultural resource, has a complex botanical history, and its small physical remains complicates the archeological investigation of its use. Building on previous research in the eastern Mediterranean, the complex relationship between the opium poppy and humans is reexamined in light of new evidence from Slovakia and Central Europe.
lecture will take place on February 20 2019 at 14:00 in the Institute of
Archaeology SAS, Akademická 2, Nitra, in the lecture room at the ground floor.
The 16th EUROGRAPHICS Workshop on
Graphics and Cultural Heritage (EG GCH), Vienna, Austria, November 12-15, 2018
Alena BISTÁKOVÁ | Elena BLAŽOVÁ |
Peter BEDNÁR | Matej RUTTKAY, Slovakia
AN EVIDENCE OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL ACTIVITIES IN SLOVAKIA
Keywords: evidence of archaeological
activities, digitizing, database, ISAU, Slovakia
Abstract: In 1939, the
Institute of Archaeology at the Slovak Academy of Sciences began developing a
central register of archaeological activities in Slovakia. The primary database
of the register comprises research reports of archaeological activities and
other written records related to archaeological finds. This database is
directly linked to photographic archives that document field activities and
archaeological artefacts. The research depositories of the Institute record
hundreds of thousands of finds divided into databases of vessels, small finds,
pottery, anthropological material, archaeobotanical samples, animal bones, etc.
these databases contained so much information, it was necessary to prepare a
central, mutually interrelated geoinformational structure. Thus, we developed
an application that allows simple and fast access to the information. The
application can be modified to add new data fields or data sets, and the system
integrates various types of databases and digital supplementary materials. In
addition, the system includes a database of archaeological artefacts from
specific times and places. The application can track an artefact on the basis
of its storage codes, current place of loan, or restoration documentation. It
permits online editing of individual entries within a predefined personal
manager interface, provides opportunities for scientific research, and allows
analyses using multiple search criteria.
of this project was to develop an information and communication centre that
includes a database of archaeological and relevant spatial data from Slovakia.
The system is designed for the scientific and general community, as well as for
local municipalities, to ensure that archaeological finds are more thoroughly
protected and used in education, tourism, and other activities.
first – trial – version of the geoinformational system is currently available
on the Geoportal.sk website.
VirtualArch is a international project aiming to settle the current trends in presentation of unseen archaeological heritage by a modern and innovative tools, like 3D modelling, augmented or virtual reality. One of the conferences, now held in Nitra, will focus on volunteers and public and their role in the monument preservation and presentation.