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OPPIDUM ČESKÉ LHOTICE

České Lhotice is a fortified settlement north of the village of the same name in the Chrudim district, which is considered the only known Celtic oppidum in Eastern Bohemia. The site was already inhabited in the Palaeolithic, Neolithic, Eneolithic, late Bronze Age and Early Hallstatt period. The preserved remains of the fortifications were built in the late phase of the La Tène period in the second century BC. Oppidum was abandoned after the middle of the first century BC. Archaeological findings also show the settlement in the Roman period and during the early and late Middle Ages.

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The earliest findings from the fortified settlement date back to 1847, when a stone was removed from the ruined wall. Later, Ivan Borkovský studied the site in 1943 and Milan Princ (?) in the years 1971–1987, but minor rescue reserches continued in the years to come.

It is assumed that the oppidum stood on one of the branches of the amber trail and also provided trade between the oppidum Závist and Staré Hradisko. In addition, it was probably a power center that dominated the extraction of mineral resources. There are in around deposits of graphite, iron ore, copper and gold. Their exploitation in the La Tène period is expected due to the easy availability of this deposits.

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The oppidum on the promontory by the Chrudimka was two-piece. The lateral sides of the promontory fall steeply into the river valley, and the northern part extends into an elongated descending ridge. On the eastern side, there was an area of eight hectares and the western part of the promontory was occupied by an inner fort with an area of about 23 hectares. The accessible eastern and southern sides of the inner fort were protected by triple fortifications. On the south side, the evangelical vicarage and the cemetery were damaged, leaving only two lines of ramparts. In the nineteenth century, when the road was built, the original main entrance on the east side also disappeared. The bailey was enclosed by only one wall.

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In the southeast corner of the inner fort was the main pincer gate with a tower. Other entrances from the river valley in the southwest and northwest, where the gate followed the terraced terrain, where the many findings from the La Tene period originated. The last gate was on the eastern half of the north side.

The highest situated part of the fort is called the acropolis. There was propably Hallstatt mounds located in these places.  There was discovered here of more dwelling buildings with pole construction, which were used for residential or producing purposes, one of buildings is concretly considered a smithy.

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