Satellite imagery has uncovered a network of over 100 Bronze Age structures in the Serbian plains. In 2015, archaeologists discovered the remnants of these ancient enclosures while reviewing Google Earth photos of a 93-mile stretch of wilderness along Serbia’s Tisza River. The findings were published in the journal PLOS ONE.
The images revealed traces of more than 100 Late Bronze Age settlements, providing detailed measurements of their size and organization. The sites, located in the Pannonian Plain, were previously thought to be unused during the Bronze Age. However, this discovery suggests that they were part of a vast trade network across Europe during that time period.
In addition to analyzing satellite images, researchers visited the site in person and found the footprints of numerous structures. Most of the enclosures were built close together, indicating a society that chose to live in close proximity.
Due to years of farming, the outlines of many enclosures were nearly invisible from the ground. However, archaeologists did find remnants of walls and ditches that may have served as ramparts for defense.
Artifacts found at the site, such as clay chariots, weaponry, grinding stones, pottery shards, and pieces of bronze, suggest that the inhabitants were familiar with warfare. Radiocarbon dating confirms the ancient occupation of the site from 1600 to 1200 B.C.
The reason for the abandonment of the settlement around 1200 B.C. remains a mystery. It’s possible that the inhabitants became more mobile and moved around the landscape in a less constrained manner.
This discovery offers valuable insights into the lives of Bronze Age societies and their extensive trade networks.