By Peter I. Bogucki, Pam J. Crabtree
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Extra info for An Encyclopedia of the Barbarian World Ancient Europe, 8000 B.C. to A.D. 1000
Settlements. The material remains of the period come from various contexts and locations— settlements, burials, and metal hoards—and show signiﬁcant differences in their geographical and temporal distribution. As for settlements, their occurrence during the Early and Middle Bronze Ages varies considerably both spatially and temporally. Large areas show no signs of settlement at all, and A N C I E N T E U R O P E B R O N Z E A G E S I N C E N T R A L E U R O P E the extension of occupation can only be reconstructed on the basis of the distribution of graves and hoards.
Aside from the rarely detectable—small and shortlived—villages and hamlets, one special class is hilltop sites such as those found, for example, in southern Germany and Moravia, located on strategically important locations and rising above and controlling their immediate environment. Similar locations were chosen for larger settlements with impressive fortiﬁcations of ditches, ramparts, and palisades. About thirty such sites are known from Slovakia alone, the excavated ones displaying a wellorganized, almost urbanistic internal layout, sometimes having narrow alleys between houses that line up in rows; comparable settlements make their appearance in southern Poland, the Czech Republic, and southern Germany.
As for settlements, their occurrence during the Early and Middle Bronze Ages varies considerably both spatially and temporally. Large areas show no signs of settlement at all, and A N C I E N T E U R O P E B R O N Z E A G E S I N C E N T R A L E U R O P E the extension of occupation can only be reconstructed on the basis of the distribution of graves and hoards. In many cases, where settlement remains are found, they only consist of pits dug into the subsoil. There are, however, some areas where archaeologists have good knowledge of house forms, internal settlement organization, and larger settlement patterns as well, especially from the later part of the Early Bronze Age.