Birów – hillfort

History

   The oldest traces of settlement on the Birów hill are from the end of the Neolithic period and the beginning of the Bronze Age. It is also known that this place was inhabited in VI-V BC, by representatives of the Lusatian culture. Then in the 4th and 5th centuries AD the hill was inhabited by Germanic tribes, after which the Slavs continued settlement continuity from the 8th century. The stronghold was burnt down in the first half of the fourteenth century, which was probably related to the fighting between Władysław Łokietek and the Czech king, Wenceslaus II. It was not rebuilt anymore, while settlements began to develop in Podzamcze and Ogrodzieniec.

Architecture

   The Lusatian settlement and then the Slavic stronghold were located on a hill, the central, flat part of which was about 100×50 meters, bordered with rocksy on the north and south side, and from the north – west with steep slopes. The terrain formed in this way left the only relatively convenient approach in the south-east, although the entry path had to cross a high slope there as well.
   The settlement built by representatives of the Lusatian culture consisted of houses of pillar construction, but no traces of defensive structures, palisades or ramparts were found. Perhaps the inhabitants of the time decided that the natural conditions of the area were sufficient protection, or the later works contributed to the blurring of the oldest fortifications.
   The Slavs decided to fortify the mountain from the north-west with a stone and wooden rampart and from the east with a wall of stones bonded with lime mortar. In this way, the natural walls created by rocks were supplemented.

Current state

   Currently on the Birów Hill is a reconstruction of a medieval fortified settlement, which unfortunately does not bring us closer to the actual appearance of the old fortifications. The objections are, among others, to the appearance of the hut, the location of the main gate or the watchtower. It is worth hoping that at least some of these elements will be improved in the future.

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bibliography:
Sypek R., Zamki i obiekty warowne Jury Krakowsko-Częstochowskiej, Warszawa 2003.