Industry, commerce, and temperate europe’s first cities: Preliminary report on 1987 excavations at kelheim, bavaria

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Field research at Kelheim in Bavaria, West Germany is investigating the emergence of the first urban centers in temperate Europe, during the final centuries of the Iron Age. This study is focusing on changes in industrial and commercial systems as key factors in the development of the urban site at Kelheim. Early results show that remains of iron smelting and forging, as well as final products of the iron industry, are abundant on the site. They further suggest that the settlement comprised a loose agglomeration of small industrial units rather than a planned community reflecting a centralized organization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)399-412
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Field Archaeology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1987

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The 1987 summer field research and follow-up laboratory work have been supported by the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota; Earthwatch and The Center for Field Research of Watertown, Massachusetts; and Research Expeditions of the University of Minnesota. I thank these institutions for their support. The fieldwork was carried out by a total of 36 individuals, both students and volunteers. I thank them collectively for their fine contributions to the effort. Dr. Bernd Engelhardt, Director of the Landshut Office of the Bayerisches Landesamt fur Denkmalpflege, provided excellent advice and guidance throughout the planning and execution of the fieldwork. Dr. Ingrid Burger, Director of the Archaeological Museum of the City of Kelheim, offered the generous hospitality of her museum and its facilities. Mr. Fritz Mathes, Mayor of Kelheim, gave our project his enthusiastic support. Mr. Hans Lindner of the Land-ratsamt Kelheim also made us feel welcome in our summer home. The Hoechst Corporation generously provided us with living and laboratory space. Mr. Alexander Binsteiner offered us important logistical support and helpful advice throughout the field season.


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