Thursday, August 5, 2010

Archaeologists find Great Moravian rotunda

Pohansko, South Moravia, Aug 4 (CTK) - Czech archaeologists have unexpectedly found the remains of a Great Moravian rotunda in the Pohansko settlement, Jiri Machacek, archaeology professor from Masaryk University in Brno, said Wednesday.

This has been the first Great Moravia church discovered after 30 years in the Czech Republic.

The first remains of the church were found two years ago, however, later on it was revealed that the stone building had a circular shape six meters in diameter and therefore was a rotunda.

"It has turned out now that Pohansko, too, had its own rotunda. These buildings were characteristic of Great Moravian centres. The find has raised the historical importance of Pohansko," Machacek said.

It has been only the second stone church revealed in the location.

Nobody expected a church to be on the site. Archaeologists have been doing archaeology excavations close to it for decades.

Some 200 graves have been found near the church. Excavations have been done in 80 of them so far, revealing various items including earrings and an old axe.

Pohansko, which may be translated as "Pagan Place", dating to the 9th century AD, is one of the major centres of Great Moravia. Most of the buildings was made of wood. Excavations in the location started some 50 years ago.

In nearby Mikulcice, 12 stone churches from the Great Moravian Empire have been found so far.

Archaeology Excavations around the rotunda in Pohansko continue and may bring new surprising finds, Machacek believes.

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