The Lombard Headman Called Ildigis and the Slavs

Marek Dulinicz
In his great work Procopius of Caesarea provided some facts about the eventful life of Ildigis, successor to the Langobard throne, who had never actually become king. The Byzantine author mentions also the tribe of Slavs which is very important for their history in the 6th century. Long-lasting discussions among historians have not led to the creation of one standpoint concerning the localization of settlements of the Slavic allies of Ildigis. The growing amount of archeological sources relating to this problem enables archeologists to participate in this discussion also. The article discusses possible interpretations of Procopius’ words and different ideas about precise localization of Slavic settlements mentioned by him. Those theories are confronted with available archeological data, especially because modern methods allow precise dating of archeological finds and the increasing volume of archaeological data from Croatia, Slovenia, Romania and other countries, enables the presentation of a new approach to the problem of earliest Slavic settlements.

Influence of the Ecological System of Illyricum on the Process of Croatian Ethnogenesis

Ivo Rendić-Miočević
The author tries to explain how the eco system of Illyricum affected newly arrived Croats in the Migration Period. He emphasizes that the aim of conquerors was to win natural resources of Illyricum (primarily cattle raising routes) and to connect regions. In the process of integration with indigenous population Croats accepted many of their cultural traits, but also characteristics of their mentality. In the atmosphere of constant threats throughout history, even prior to the arrival of Croats, in mountainous regions, an agressive "Dinaric" component developed which is a general human characteristic and it cannot be attributed solely to the "Dinarians" who despite this characteristic have always exhibited intellectual and creative abilities. Sociogeographic conditions and threats from the "others" in these regions influenced creation of particular ideology accepted by newly arrived Croats. This ideology, as the author stresses, found its expression in epic poetry which probably has its roots in Illyrian creativity. Ecosystem of Illyricum influenced formation of agrarian/cattle-raising communities which regulated social relations and the relation of community members towards nature by customary law. This relation was defined in the statutes of coastal communes and in the laws of the northern Croatian littoral and islands. In order to maintain stability of the ecosystem of Illyricum, way of life almost did not change until "modernization shock" and "ecological revolution" (nature destruction). In the region of old Illyricum these phenomena appeared late in comparison with the European development, but in the 19th, and particularly 20th century, they caused difficult traumas in patriarchal population. The author concludes that historiography which does not take into consideration ancient culturological and genetical inheritance and awakening of archetypes in terms of transgenerational transitions will never be able to interpret the tragedy of the peoples from the Mediterranean-Danubian region. We need to learn about the Kraljević Marko syndrome and to supress it in order to use creative potentials of the patriarchal population.

Der Verhaltnis zwischen dem Volumen und dem Durchmesser eines Topfes

Andrej Pleterski
Für die Beurteilung der Funktion eines Topfes ist sein Volumen von Bedeutung. Da in Siedlungsschichten ganze Töpfe nur sehr selten vorkommen, kann ihr Volumen nur aufgrund der Durchmesser eingeschätzt werden. In erster Linie sind dafür Randfragmente bzw. Fragmente mit erhaltenem Halsbereich geeignet. Diese Überlegung zur Volumensbestimmung kann auch überprüft werden, indem man bei einer Gruppe ganzer Töpfe die bekannten Volumina mit den Durchmessern vergleicht.

Early Medieval Thatching Needles from the Site of Torčec - Prečno pole: a Contribution to the Knowledge of the Slavic Settlement of the Drava River Basin

Tajana Sekelj Ivančan
The article discusses unpublished objects of bone gathered during systematic archaeological excavations at the site of Torčec-Prečno pole I in Podravina (the Drava River basin). Similar or identical objects are usually interpreted as tools for weaving together reeds, hay, or other vegetal fibers. Three such artifacts were anatomically and zoologically recognized as the tibia bones of sheep or goats (1?, 2, 3, 6). Thatching needles belong to the class of objects that served for everyday use and are frequently present in Slavic settlements, and can also be found at early medieval cemeteries. In the medieval settlements of the broader European region, they have been discovered in fortified structures, rural settlements of the open type, as well as in longterm settlements alongside churches and cemeteries. As this type of object does not exhibit any specific typologicalchronological characteristics, and is quite widely dated at both types of sites (settlements and cemeteries), from the earliest medieval period onwards, it should be noted that three examples of thatching needles (1, 2, 3) come from one closed unit, a structure dated by 14C radiocarbon dating to the period up to or around the middle of the 7th century (14C - SJ 037 (KIA 28648): BP 1439 ± 22; cal AD 624, 627, 638; 1 sigma: cal AD 604 - 612 (12.3%), cal AD 616 - 644 (56.0%); 2 sigme: cal AD 564 - 574 (2.9%), cal AD 577 - 589 (3.8%), cal AD 597 - 657 (88.7%). The dates from the analyzed charcoal range in a framework from the first half of the 7th century to the latest, in AD 657, and it can be presumed that our examples were in use during the second half of the 7th century. If the function is considered of these objects discovered in structures by an old meander of the Drava River, it should be noted that fishing must certainly have represented a significant source of food (several fragments of fish bones were discovered), and it is possible that these thatching needles would have served for the manufacture of fishing nets or reed baskets used by the ancient inhabitants of Torčec to catch fish. The results of the recent archaeological excavations as supported by the 14C dates show that a settlement existed around the middle or in the second half of the 7th century at the site of Prečno pole I at Torčec, whose inhabitants used bone thatching needles as a tool in everyday life.

First Eneolithic Idol Finds in Dalmatia

Brunislav Marijanović
The article deals with two unique finds of Eeneolithic acephalic idols unearthed in the course of excavations in 2010 at the Buković − Lastvine site in Benkovac near Zadar. The idols have been only partly preserved. They were found close to each other in a very shallow pit on the very inner edge of a larger pit structure, but outside of any ritual context. They belong to a safe stratigraphic context composed of channelled pottery characteristic of the early Eneolithic in the eastern Adriatic.

The Find from the Migration Period from Brgud near Benkovac

Ante Uglešić
In his paper the author analyzes a bow fibula found on the site of Jarebinjak in Brgud near Benkovac. Analyzes of its typological and stylistic characteristics, as well as comparison with fibulae from pannonian-danubian region, i.e. the territory of present-day Hungary, establish that fibula from Brgud should be attributed to the Gepids. It can be dated to the very end of the 5th century or the first three decades of the 6th century. In all probability, it was made in one of the local workshops in the territory of Dalmatia. Fibula from Brgud is a new contribution to the history of the Gepids in our territories in the time of Ostrogothic rule over Dalmatia. It is also additional indication for a supposition that the Roman settlement of Alveria should be placed on the Jarebinjak hill-fort.

The Acts of Salonitan metropolitan councils held in 530 and 533 - an analysis

Ante Škegro
This article analyzes the Acts of the Salonitan Metropolitan Councils (concilia metropolitana Salonitana) held on the 15th of July 530 and the 4th of May 533 under the aegis of the archbishop of Salona (archiepiscopus Salonitanus) Honorius the Younger (528-547). The participants signed them according to the importance of their dioceses, or status, starting from the archbishop himself to the factorum (primas) of the very last Dalmatian bishopric (to 530), or rather the bishops of three newly established dioceses (533). The Acts from 530 were further signed by the Salonitan archpresbyter, four presbyters of undefined diocesan identity, and probably two representatives of the monastic communities (patres). The Acts from 533 were signed only by bishops, which is understandable given the fact that during this Council the question was solved of the reorganization of the church in Dalmatia and the Salonitan metropolitan district and the consecration of new bishops. The Acts of both Councils were also signed by the bishop of Siscia in Pannonia, not merely because his diocese, just like Dalmatia, from 493 onwards had been under the authority of the Ostrogoths, but probably also because this bishopric was faced with problems similar to those of the church in Dalmatia.

Justinian's Fortification of Illyricum

Slavko Ciglenečki
The article discusses various examples of fortification in the area of the prefecture of Illyricum, extending from the Mediterranean Noricum and Dalmacia all the way to Epirus and Achaea, which are attributed to the Justinian period. For eastern Illyricum exist the extensive documents of Procopius, with partial descriptions of cities, settlements, and military fortifications, which require critical evaluation so establish an accurate insight into the extent of Justinian’s activities. Data of this type – with several small exceptions – do not exist for western Illyricum, but archaeological excavations and field surveys of the well-preserved architecture in the Mediterranean section have enabled dating of buildings and the renovation of numerous structures in the Justinian period. These significant changes in the settlement structure of late Antiquity can be characterized as the "kastronization" of settlements and territories and the "transition from polis to kastron". In the article the author attempts, in comparison with better known examples of fortification in eastern Illyricum cited in sources, to seek parallels in western Illyricum and to present the similarities and differences between them. The author will show the different categories of towns and their transformation, as well as the occasional defensive structures already dated in more detail to the Justinian period. For fortification in the area he will briefly delineate the state of research in the various regions of the prefecture of Illyricum, and for several better investigated examples display the fundamental characteristics of the construction of the military fortifications and settlements. In somewhat more detail will be presented the later defensive elements of fortifications in Dalmatia, Bosnia, Slovenia, and Austria. Several examples of lines of defensive barriers will also be noted.

A Soldier Stele from Lobor

Branka Migotti
A limestone stele from the village of Lobor (north-western Croatia) was accidentally recovered in 1857, but its archaeological context has never been established (figs. 1, 2). Its find spot belonged to a Roman settlement or a villa in the territory of either Andautonia or Poetovio, both towns in the Roman province of Pannonia Superior. It was first published in 1909, the stress being on epigraphy, and was later mentioned in passing in a number of articles in various contexts. In some of them the stele in question was illustrated by drawings featuring some false or imprecise details (figs. 3, 4); therefore, a new one has been made for the needs of the present discussion (fig. 2). The aim of this paper was to discuss the stone from Lobor in detail, with the stress on military iconography, social context of its use and the workshop affiliation. The epitaph reveals that the tombstone was put up by the mother and a brother, Septimia Lucilla and Cocceius, signifer of Legio X gemina, to 30-year-old Marcus Cocceius Superianus, centurion of the same legion and to 40-year-old praetorian Valerius Lucilianus. It transpires from the names and the woman’s clothes that it was an early Romanised native family, with a long tradition of serving in the Roman army. The dress and equipment of both soldiers are the same: a sagum with a round brooch, a long-sleeve tunic, a belt with a rectangular frame buckle, a spatha worn on the left side and ending in a round scabbard chape and a baldric featuring an oval mount. The only difference between them is in that the soldier on the right side has one scroll in his left hand, while the other one has two, one each in each hand (possibly the praetorian). The woman is clad in native costume, with the overdress fastened on the shoulders by brooches of the shape unparalleled elsewhere. On the basis of the dress, equipment and the portraits, the stele should be dated 220-250 A.D. The form of the stone points toward Norican typological traits and seems to have been manufactured in the workshop(s) of Andautonia or under its influence, rather than in Poetovio. A comparison between the stele from Lobor and one from Brusnik (mid northern Croatia) (fig. 5), whose typology is completely different although it was also military (legionary) and from the same period and the same province, points to soldiers as an integrated element of the civilian community.

Two Newspaper Notes (Osservatore Dalmato) on the Find of the Inscription CIL III, 1745 from the Year 1856

Miroslav Glavičić
In the third volume of the collection of Latin inscriptions Corpus inscriptionum Latinarum an inscription was published under the number 1745. It was written on a base of a monument which was set up in the first half of the 2nd century in honour of an Epidaurum notable P. Aelius Osillianus. The inscription was found in 1856, when two interesting articles about the find of that inscription in Cavtat were published in the Zadar newspaper Osservatore Dalmato (nos. 79 and 96). They were written by Mato Vodopić and Šime Ljubić. The author presents a transcript of the published articles (Appendix I and Appendix II) and comments on their contents, mentioning also basic biographical information about their authors. Mato Vodopić was a theologian, writer an natural scientist, who became a bishop of Dubrovnik by the end of his life (Fig. 1). Šime Ljubić was a writer, historian and an archaeologist, who is rightfully esteemed as one of the founders of modern archaeology in Croatia due to his self-sacrifying and above all professional work (Fig. 2). On the basis of epigraphic and onomastic analysis the author presents his own comment on the text of the inscription CIL III, 1745 (Fig. 3). P. Aelius Osillianus was an Epidaurum notable who probably originated from an autochtonous Romanized family from the colony territory or nearby inland. Namely, as his naming formula indicates, his family obtained citizenship during the Emperor Hadrian, and as early as the first half of the 2nd century it had risen significantly in the social scale band belonged to the highest aristocracy in Epidaurum. This is evident from the inscription text, since due to family's reputation, and his personal achievements, the entire city council honoured P. Aelius Osillianus and determined the place for raising the monument by unanimous vote. All activities regarding the construction of the monument and organizing accompanying ceremonies, which implied covering the costs as well, were managed by Ossilianus' mother Novia Bassila and grandmother Iustilla. When the monument was inaugurated, they gave appropriate gifts (sportulae), to the members of the city council, augustales and seviri, and for their fellow-citizens they organized boxing matches. The inscription CIL III, 1745 is exceptionally important since it documents almost entire procedure of paying respect to a deserving citizen during the first half of the 2nd century in Epidaurum.

A Slavic Cremation Grave from Lobor

Krešimir Filipec
During archaeological excavations at the site of Lobor, at the pilgrimage church of Our Lady of the Mountain (Majka Božja Gorska), an urn with cremated remains of a deceased individual was discovered in 2009. It was found to the south of the existing church at the place where the remains of a wooden church had been discovered, which had been excavated completely. While emptying the postholes of the wooden church, the remains were found of an upsidedown pottery vessel containing ash, soot, and bones. Other than individual fragments of pottery vessels, no strata were found during the archaeological excavations that could be dated before the beginning of the 9th century. In general few fragments of medieval pottery vessels were found, and those few were fairly tiny. The established remains of an adult male in the pottery vessel confirm that it served as an urn. In addition to the human remains found in the vessel, there were also remains of cattle, sheep or goat, deer, and pig. Individual small pieces of animal bone were evidently gathered and placed together in the same vessel after the feast in honor of the deceased. The varied types of animals that were consumed at the funeral indirectly indicate the wealth of the family of the deceased. This must have been a well-to-do member of the Slavic community. This was also indicated by the very well-made vessel that served as the urn. Several fragments of tiny bronze objects were found in the layer surrounding the urn, but only theoretically could they belong to the contents of the urn. Several variously decorated bone objects were found in the layer of the ruins of the wooden church. The urn, as was already noted, was not placed at the base of the posthole, but rather somewhere in its middle. Hence it could not have arrived in this position during the erection of the church prior to the placement of the wooden beam. Soot and ash and burnt animal bones were found everywhere around the posthole. It is very probable that on the occasion of building the wooden church, dated to the very beginning of the 9th century, the cremation grave with the urn was damaged by the placement of the post just next to it. When that church was demolished and the wooden posts were removed, the urn fell into the empty hole. The church in fact was not destroyed immediately after the construction of the three-aisled basilica, rather the basilica and the wooden church almost certainly stood until the middle of the 10th century adjacent to one another. Two silver denarii of the Hungarian King Stephen I, found in the fill between the graves located in a layer above the wooden church perhaps indicate the period of it’s demolition. Not a single grave, other than the previously mentioned grave of a young girl in the apse of the church, found in the layers above the wooden church, can be dated prior to the 13th century. The wooden church was built next to the Early Christian one, but in a place occupied by an earlier pagan cemetery. The Slavs had placed their graves around the site of the Early Christian church and its ruins. Not a single cremation grave has been found in situ due to the construction of the wooden church, and probably the building of the three-aisled basilica, as well as the long burial tradition that took place at the same site. The remains of the only urn discovered so far were found thanks to the fact that it had fallen into a posthole of the wooden church. This preserved it from possible later damage. The cremation grave from Lobor should also be dated to the end of the 8th or beginning of the 9th century. The circumstances of the find allow us to conclude (the urn having been dislocated in the area of a wooden Carolingian church from the beginning of the 9th century) that this was very probably one of the last such burials at the cemetery at Lobor. In the very next generation, given the changed political conditions under the influence of the Frankish missionaries, the Christian inhumation burial ritual became predominant. The dislocated urn from Lobor is just one more contribution to knowledge about the earliest burial customs of the Slavs in the Pannonian plain, but also further. An uninterrupted continuity of burial from the 9th to the 19th centuries had already been discovered at the site. It is now evident that the Christian stratum of the 9th century was preceded by a pagan burial ritual consisting of the cremation of the deceased and the placement of his or her remains in an urn.

Finds of Slavic Pottery from the Site of Podvršje - Glavčine

Karla Gusar
The site of Podvršje-Glavčine is situated in the vicinity of Zadar and it was excavated in several archaeological campaigns from 2002 to 2007 under the leadership of A. Uglešić. During the research an early Christian complex consisting of double basilicae with ancillary rooms and a cemetery was discovered on this position. Besides architectural remains, great number of fragments of stone furniture and architectural decoration was discovered in this complex, as well as fragments of ceramic and glass vessels belonging to Late Antiquity. The entire complex was destroyed in a fire during the first half or middle of the 7th century, as indicated by archaeological finds, and the results of radiocarbon analysis. Among finds which for the most part belong to Late Antiquity, fragments of early medieval ceramic vessels of Slavic technological-typological characteristics found chiefly in the front part of the northern church are particularly interesting. There were six such vessels among which we can distinguish hand made pottery and the one made on slow-turning potter's wheel, as well as undecorated and decorated vessels. Motif of wavy lines between parallel lines is dominant on decorated examples. All vessels are represented by sherds of pots, made of purified clay tempered with calcite grains, and their colour varies depending on the firing process. On the basis of analysis pots can be dated to the second half of the 7th and the first half of the 8th century. It is worth mentioning that these vessels belong to early medieval finds from a settlement which are extremely rare in Dalmatia representing the least explored segment of early medieval pottery production. It is also important to emphasize that these vessels are the only early medieval find at this site. Despite the paucity of these vessels, they represent an exceptionally important testimony of the presence of newly arrived Slavs who used dilapidated early Christian complex at Glavčine as a temporary shelter suitable for a shorter stay.

Characteristics of the Oldest Slavic Pottery. The Example of a Pot from Structure SO 11 from the Murska Sobota - Nova Tabla Site

Mitja Guštin, Daša Pavlović
In the period from 1999 to 2008, as part of motorway construction works, comprehensive archaeological excavations were conducted in the part of the Prekmurje region between the banks of the Mura River and the town of Murska Sobota. Numerous remains were unearthed that can be associated with the first Slavic settlement in the area of the Eastern Alps and Northern Adriatic. In Nova Tabla, 189 residential structures from the early Middle Ages were examined. The settlement also contained a group of 11 skeleton graves, unearthed on the south-western margin of Roman tumuli with incineration graves. On the basis of typology and comparison with other related sites, and with the help of numerous radiocarbon dating tests, the Nova Tabla settlement has been divided into two larger cultural and time horizons: Murska Sobota 1 and 2, with interstages of development encompassing the period from the 6th until the beginning of the 9th century. The inventory of pit SO 11 with a fragment of a simply made small jug with a loosely curved mouth can be classified as belonging to the oldest early Slavic settlement remains in Nova Tabla. The reconstructed small pot (Fig. 3) with its slender shaped body, indefinitely shaped mouth, hand-made with a porous undecorated surface, is a good representative of Prague Culture pottery (cf. M. KUNA et al., 2005, 347) and has the recognisable workmanship characteristic of the earthenware of the first Slavic horizon of Murska Sobota 1. Apart from the light non-oxidised burning, the uneven, porous surface of the entire vessel is also typical of this facture. In the Slovenian archaeological context, a porous surface on ceramic vessels and carved, wave-shaped decorative lines are typical of early mediaeval Slavic pottery. Generally, the porosity of the surface is associated with admixtures of plant origin, usually with grains of wheat, which usually get completely burned in the process of baking (G. FUSEK, 1994, 16; M. KUNA et al., 2005, 339). One of the possible ways of achieving a porous surface was adding crushed coal. This method is hard to prove but was successfully carried out as part of an experiment in making Slavic pottery (M. GUŠTIN, 2005, 37; I. BAHOR, 2010). The newcomers’ distinctive pottery with its porous surface remained the only type of pottery over a short period of time. Soon after its appearance, in the first half of the seventh century, the first shaping and technological developments in early Slavic pottery from Nova Tabla and other sites had started.

A New Find of a Fish-shaped Relief Glass Bottle

Ivo Fadić
A fish-shaped relief glass bottle was found in grave 59 (quadrant 3A) during the rescue archaeological excavations at the site of Trgovački Centar (Shopping Mall) Relja in 2005. This find is particularly important since the entire context of the find is defined so that it offers valuable insights about the distribution of this type of the bottle as well as about the the chronological determination of its formation which has been a subject of discussions. These chronological dilemmas were solved by grave goods and typology of the burial at the ancient necropolis of Iader. On the basis of glass finds which belonged to grave goods from grave 59 together with the fish-shaped relief bottle we can state with certainty that this bottle which was blown into a two-part mold was made in the period from the mid-first to the beginning of the second century AD, to be precise in the second half of the first century AD. Out of total number of eight examples of these bottles, place of discovery is known for only four (Romania, Greece and Croatia), two of which were found in the Croatian littoral. Since none of the findspots was located in the western part of the Roman Empire, one cannot help thinking that fish-shaped relief bottles were created in the eastern Mediterranean, most likely in the Syrian glassmaking workshops in the first century AD when small Syrian relief bottles in vegetal and anthropomorphous shapes with relief decoration were very popular.

Certain Topographical Observations about the Spatial Organization of the Territory of the Village of Tršci

Franjo Smiljanić
The spatial organization of the village of Tršci and the neighboring villages, particularly Zemunik, is analyzed in the article. Particular attention is paid to the extent of the territory, and the location of settlements and roads, leading to the conclusion that the village was formed from a former estate from late antiquity.

Cremation of the Dead in Prehistory of Northern Dalmatia

Sineva Kukoč
In the northern Dalmatia region where there were only two cultural systems throughout the Bronze and Iron Ages, four moments are crucial in the use of cremation ritual during the 2nd/1st centuries BC: in the Early Bronze Age (Cetina culture: Ervenik, Podvršje − Matakov brig, Nadin, Krneza − Duševića glavica), in the Early Iron Age (Nadin, mound 13, Krneza − Jokina glavica), in Hellenism (Dragišić, gr. 4 A-C), and finally, for the first time very intensively during the Romanization of Liburnians. Newly discovered cremations in ceramic urns (gr. 3, 13) in burial mound 13 (9th – 6th cent. BC) from Nadin near Benkovac are the first example (after Dragišić) of Liburnian cremation; more precisely, burial mound 13 with 19 graves represents a form of biritualism in the Liburnians. It is also an example of the greatest number of Liburnian burials under a mound, with crouched, extended and cremated skeletons and many ritual remains (traces of fire on the ground and on animal bones: funerary feast?; numerous remains of ceramic vessels (libation?). Although typical Liburnian burial "inherits" many formal and symbolic elements (stone cist, enclosing wall, libation, etc.) from the (Early) Bronze Age (and probably Eneolithic as well), cremation in the Liburnian burial mound 13 from Nadin cannot be explained in terms of continuity from the Early Bronze Age; links are missing, particularly those from the Middle Bronze Age in the study of the cultural dynamics of the 2nd millennium BC in the northern Dalmatia region. Squat form of the Nadin urns with a distinct neck has analogies in the Liburnian (Nin) and Daunian funerary pots for burying newborns (ad encytrismos), and also in the typology of pottery (undecorated or decorated) in a wider region (Ruše, V.Gorica, Dalj/Vukovar, Terni II, Este, Bologna I-II, Roma II, Cumae I, Pontecagnano IA, Histrians, etc.), i.e. in the forms widespread from the Danubian region, Alps, and Balkans to the Apennine Peninsula between the Late Bronze and Early Iron Ages (10th/9th – 8th cent. BC). Although appearance of cremation in the Picenian culture has not been completely clear (Fermo necropolis, burials from Ancona, Numana, Novilara: graves Servici, 29, 39 from Piceno II-III, from the 8th/7th.cent. BC), Liburnian culture is most similar to the Picenian culture in the Adriatic world by the intensity and period of cremation, and form of urns. Specifically, decorated urn in a male grave 52 from Numana from the 9th century BC is analogous to the Nadin urns. This grave from Numana is usually mentioned as an example of trans-Adriatic, Picenian-Liburnian (Balkanic) i.e. Picenian-Histrian relations. Liburnian urns are similar to the urn from the grave in Numana, 495, Davanzali, from the late 9th century by their profilation. "Genesis" of both Liburnian and Picenian cremation is unknown. They are two convergent phenomena, reflecting the "unity" of the late Urnenfelder world of the 10th/9th centuries BC and resulting from cultural-ethnical contacts in a "closed circle" from the Danubian region – southeastern Alpine region – Apennine Peninsula, supported by smaller migrations in the first centuries of the Iron Age, from the trans-Adriatic direction in Picenum (with definite Villanova influence), and in Liburnia probably from the hinterland. In this Adriatic circle in the first centuries of the Iron Age multiple cultural contacts between Liburnians, Histrians and Picenians are for now a good (initial) context for a more detailed interpretation of Liburnian cremation. Despite the aforementioned, it is not necessary to relate directly the structure (ritual, goods) of gr. 52, Numana – Qualiotti to Histrian patterns nor the grave 495, Numana-Davanzali to the Iapodian ones. Cremated Liburnian burial from the Early Iron Age represents a certain continuity and a "reflection" of the late Urnenfelder circle, which was manifested in different ways in the beginnings of the Liburnian, Picenian, and Histrian cultures and elsewhere. The latest excavations on a planned Liburnian-Roman necropolis in Nadin (Nedinum) provided us with new information about the spatial, chronological and symbolical relation (religious, social) between the autochtonous Liburnian and Roman component in the period of Romanization of northern Dalmatia.

A Contribution to the Study of Prehistory of the Island of Dugi Otok

Martina Čelhar
This paper presents a grave from the site of Zdrakovac situated between Malo and Velo Jezero (small and big lake) near Žman on the island of Dugi Otok. The grave which was partially devastated by vegetation, animals and atmospheric agents was discovered by chance in 1998, and it was fully explored in 2009. Grave construction did not consist of a classical cist with regular vertically placed stone slabs. Terrain configuration has been partially used so that the source rock served as one longer side of the grave, whereas on the other side there is a larger stone with two narrow vertical stones in its extension. South-eastern shorter side of the grave consists of a vertically placed massive stone slab. The remaining side of the grave has not been determined on the opposite side as there is no evident stone architecture but only concentration of smaller stones. The cover is massive. A female person who died in her thirties was buried in the grave, most likely in a crouched position. Several ceramic and metal objects were found in the grave. Most objects were made of bronze, mostly representing jewelry and parts of attire which are usual finds in Liburnian graves. Grave goods include small ceramic vessel and spools, as well as probably iron objects whose function is difficult to determine due to poor state of preservation. Several sea pebbles were also found. Typological analysis of rich grave inventory shows that the objects laid next to the deceased person in this grave were produced and used during the 6th and 5th centuries BC. The youngest grave goods date this burial to the mid-5th century BC, or its latter half, corresponding to the fourth phase of the Liburnian culture. This grave is important because it indicates that there was a community in this region which communicated and participated in trade with other regions in the 5th century BC, which is attested by the first object that is definitely imported to the region of Dugi Otok. Furthermore, it was discovered that burials in the Iron Age took place not only under burial mounds, but also in flat graves which was a common practice in the entire Liburnian region, previously not confirmed on this island. On the basis of another massive cover, and a tumulus in the immediate vicinity of the grave, it is reasonable to assume that there was a necropolis belonging to occasionally inhabited hill-fort of Zarubinjak or a supposed settlement without hill-fort characteristics with visible remains of dry-stone wall houses on the slopes of the Zdrakovac ridge.

Numismatic Finds from Roman Residential Object in Caska (Cadastral Plot 1941/24)

Mato Ilkić
Northern part of the island of Pag has been a challenge for archaeological science as several important and rich sites are situated in this region. One of them is about 3 km east of Novalja, in the Bay of Caska. In the last ten years in the series of archaeological explorations significant remains of Roman settlement and necropolis were discovered. Abundant numismatic material was found in these excavations, among other finds. On this occasion I would like to present Roman coins which were unearthed in 2005 and 2006 during archaeological excavations on the plot of Juraj Palčić (cadastral plot 1941/24) in Caska where remains of a complex Roman residential object were explored under the leadership of Goran Skelac. Thirteen pieces of the Roman currency were discovered in trenches. A half of a split coin probably belongs to the period of the Roman Republic (cat. no. 1). Due to poor state of preservation it cannot be dated with certainty. A well preserved bronze coin belongs to the final period of the Roman Republic (cat. no. 2). Two busts are depicted on its front side: Caesar with a wreath on his head and bare-headed Octavian. This dupondius was made in the Lugdunum (Lyon) mint. To my best knowledge, this Gallic provincial coin from approximately 36 BC is the first such find from the territory of ancient Liburnia. Then, there was also an August's as from the mint in Rome (cat. no. 3). Sex. Nonius Quinctilianus, a monetary official from the year 6 BC is mentioned in the legend at the reverse. As with a depiction of the first Roman emperor and mention of C. Marcius Censorinus was also discovered at this site in Caska (cat. no. 4). Since Censorinus was a monetary official in 18 BC who supervised minting of sesterces and dupondii only, according to the standard catalogue Roman Imperial Coinage, as with his name is probably an early imperial forgery. Following numismatic finds belong to the beginning of the second half of the 3rd century: two antoniniani from the mint in Rome with depictions of the Emperor Gallienus (cat. no. 5) and his wife Salonina (cat. no. 6). Seven coins belong to the Late Antiquity. One of them is from the period of Constantine the Great (cat. no. 7). Coin with a depiction of Caesar Constantine II, his son, is dated to the last two years of his father's reign (cat. no. 9). A coin with posthumous depiction of Constantine the Great belongs to the first decade of independent reign of his sons (cat. no. 8). Four coins belong to the period around mid-fourth century. One of them was minted in Siscia, under the Emperor Constans. Phoenix, a firebird symbolizing immortality i.e. resurrection is on the reverse (cat. no. 10). The last three coins were minted during the Emperor Constantius II. A distinctly military theme is depicted on their reverses: a Roman soldier strikes enemy on a horse with a spear (cat. no. 11-13). As a whole this numismatic assemblage contributes to a more precise chronological determination of this complex Roman residential object in Caska. It is also important for better understanding of money circulation in the region of ancient Liburnia. I would like to dedicate this article with best wishes to a dear friend and colleague, Professor Janko Belošević.

Jewelry and Art of Vlakno Cave

Dario Vujević, Mate Parica

The Vlakno cave is situated in the central part of the island of Dugi Otok between settlements Luka and Savar. The cave was suitable for dwelling of a smaller group throughout the year due to its look, size and orientation. The third campaign of the archaeological research was undertaken at the beginning of 2010 with the aim of determining complete startigraphy of the site so that the excavation was conducted within previously opened Trench B (fig. 1).

In the previous campaigns the level of tephra, Neapolitan Yellow Tuff was reached. Analyses indicate that this layer was formed 14 500 years ago. In the new campaign additional 80 cm of deposits under tephra have been excavated, and the bottom of the cave was not reached until the end of the campaign. Under the tephra there are three main layers separated with two thin interlayers of ash and burnt soil which actually represent walking surfaces from the period when the cave was in use. Preliminary analyses of the material from all three layers indicate to the Epigravettian period corresponding with the general development of the Upper Palaeolithic on both sides of the Adriatic. Dates acquired for layers under tephra indicate age from 12. 710 to 12. 120 cal. years BC (14. 660 to 14. 060 cal. years BP).

At the beginning of the new excavation decrease of the remains of marine organisms was evident, and the remains of big terrestrial animals refer mostly to big ruminants. There are less flint tools, although they are still represented with a significant number of specimens. There are also bone tools, such as perforated teeth of a deer (Cervus elaphus), perforated shells and snails (Cyclope neritea, Columbella rustica and shells of the genus Glycimeris). Eight perforated deers' teeth were found, six different perforated shells and a bead made of a shell of the genus Entalina (Dentalium tetragonum) (fig. 2). Alongside these finds, we need to mention fragments of ten bone awls and punches.

Besides jewelry, meaning of the aesthetics gains even more importance regarding the find of two fragments of chert nodules in the same layer. One of them is decorated with a row of short, parallel and two horizontal incisions on the cortex (fig. 5). This was a segment of a larger depiction, continuing in three directions in relation to the extant segment. Unfortunately other fragments are missing which is why it is impossible to discuss the type of depiction. Nodule is broken, only its segment is preserved. It is triangular in cross-section, 3,6 cm long. Preliminary analyses indicate that it was exposed to heating before it was broken.

Another fragment of a nodule was found in the same layer, semicircular in cross-section. Incisions in the cortex are shallow, filling the entire surface as opposed to the previously mentioned fragment. This is a row of slanted parallel short incisions encircling the flake (fig. 6).

Meaning of these objects remains unknown until the time of possible discovery of some other fragment. There are no indications of functional characteristics of these incisions which is why it is reasonable to suppose that their purpose was of aesthetic nature to say the least. It is possible that depictions on the stone from Vlakno have far more complex meaning. Archaeologists assume that some of the art of the Upper Palaeolithic was used for information storage. Geometric forms might represent different marks or symbols, messages illegible to a modern man.

These are not the only decorated objects from Vlakno. On a bone awl is a row of horizontal, short incisions on the proximal part which were not created as a result of working or using bone (cutmarks) but they undoubtedly represent a decoration of the object. Similar incisions (four short incisions) were found on the distal part of the bone punch. These incisions can only have aesthetic meaning as well as on the previously mentioned example. However they may be a sign of ownership or affiliation to a group, or, since the incisions repeat, they may represent a system of numbers.


Frühmittelalterliche Grubenhäuser: Probleme der Terminologie, Typologie und Rekonstruktion

Peter Šalkovský
Der Beitrag beschäftigt sich mit dem grundlegenden Problem der Terminologie, Typologie, Interpretation und Rekonstruktion von archäologischen Gegenständen, welche inkonsequent u.a. als Grubenhäuser, Halbgrubenhäuser, Grubenhütten, Hütten bezeichnet werden. Anhand einer Analyse versucht der Autor, verschiedene Arten von eingetieften Bauten in frühmittelalterlichen Siedlungen Mittelund Osteuropas zu beschreiben und zu definieren.

Another Iron Age Grave on the Isthmus near Ston

Romana Menalo
The grave was discovered by chance in the late 1960s when foundations of a house were dug some 200 m east of city gate. Finds were collected by an unknown finder who gave it to the former Institute for the Protection of the Monuments in Dubrovnik. Only several sherds of ceramic ware were found, an omega pin and a stone bead. Nevertheless, it is important to publish these modest finds having in mind lack of research at prehistoric sites in Ston. The ware is of Greek origin: Corinthian skyphoi or their Attic variants which can probably be dated to the 4th century BC. On the basis of this and other chance finds in the immediate vicinity, particularly on Prevlaka, it is reasonable to assume the existence of a flat necropolis which can be broadly dated to the period from the 5th to late 4th century BC

New Finds of Late Antique Grave Vaults in Lower Herzegovina

Ivanka Miličević-Capek
During field surveys of the Lower Herzegovina region to establish the condition of cultural monuments, the staff of the Department for Protection of Cultural and Historical Heritage of Herzegovina-Neretva Canton noted and registered in 2003 and 2004 a large number of previously unknown or merely sporadically mentioned sites at which the existence of Early Christian walled grave vaults can be established or conjectured. Their common feature is a stone construction with a barrel vault of stone or travertine, with one or two flat stone bases in the grave chamber, although a vault type without such stones also appears. Walled grave vaults as a rule were tied to Early Christian sacral architecture, while the impossibility of connecting individual grave vaults discovered by chance to religious structures is caused by the lack of systematic archaeological research. So far around 80 grave vaults have been registered in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which were probably family grave vaults of the upper class, perhaps of owners of the estates on which churches were built. On the basis of the architecture of individual graves beneath stećci (monumental tombstones) in the area under consideration, related to the manner of constructing grave vaults, a continuity of burial can be conjectured at Early Christian sites all the way to the late medieval period.

Bibliography of Professor Emeritus Janko Belošević

Tomislav Fabijanić, Karla Gusar
Bibliography of Professor Emeritus Janko Belošević

On the Work of Professor Janko Belošević

Ante Uglešić
On the Work of Professor Janko Belošević