The fortified site of Gars-Thunau in Lower Austria, aerial photo and digital reconstruction (Aerial Photo Archive, University of Vienna; Michael Lisner, vdx, Vienna)

Between the Carolingian west and the Byzantine east: Fortified élite settlements of the 9th and 10th centuries AD in central Europe

Hajnalka Herold

This recent project investigated fortified élite settlements of 9th and 10th-century central Europe, a territory situated in the border region of the Carolingian and the Byzantine realm. An important part of the project has been to reflect upon, and go beyond, current national narratives of the investigated period and to develop possible interpretative frameworks for the entire central European region. The analysis and publication of excavations from the site of Gars-Thunau in Lower Austria constituted the starting point of these investigations. The large scale excavations at this site, spanning almost four decades, represent a prestige project of the Department of Prehistoric and Medieval Archaeology of the University of Vienna. The project has been funded by the Austrian Science Fund (ProjectNr: P21256, for a summary of the project goals follow this link) and by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.


Herold, H. 2012, ‘Fortified Settlements of the 9th and 10th Centuries AD in Central Europe: Structure, Function and Symbolism’, Medieval Archaeology 56, 60–84. DOI: 10.1179/0076609712Z.0000000003, see also this link