|Bălan||Gabriel||Muzeul Naţional al Unirii, Alba Iulia|
|Burlacu-Timofte||Raluca||Universitatea "Babeş - Bolyai", Cluj-Napoca|
|Ciugudean||Horia||responsabil||Muzeul Naţional al Unirii, Alba Iulia|
|Ciută||Beatrice||Universitatea "1 Decembrie 1918", Alba Iulia|
|Hansen||Svend||Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, Eurasien Abteilung, Berlin, Germany|
|Kalmbach||Johannes||Roemish-Germanischen Kommission, Germany|
|Rustoiu||Gabriel Tiberiu||Muzeul Naţional al Unirii, Alba Iulia|
|Uhnér||Claes||Roemish-Germanischen Kommission, Germany|
The hillfort is situated on the Gruşeţ Hill, north of the village. The western slopes of the hill (part of the Secaşelor Plateau) descend towards the Mureş floodplain and a dead channel of the river which delimits is the settlement in this direction. Recent data obtained by drilling indicate that this channel represents the actual course of the river during Late Bronze Age. The site on Gruşeţ hill was discovere...d in 1953 and the first excavations were conducted in 1959-1960 (138), followed by large-scale excavations between 1978 -1987 led by a team formed of V. Vasiliev, H. Ciugudean and A.I. Aldea. The results of these campaigns were published in the monograph of the settlement from 1991 (139). Three habitation levels were identified inside the fortifications: the two oldest are characterised by Gáva material, while in the third level, there is both Gáva and Basarabi material. The site was dated in Ha. B1 - C periods (140). In 2009, H. Ciugudean argued for an earlier dating of the first horizon at Teleac to the Ha. A phase. The last habitation level is characterized by the presence of some early Basarabi features which belongs to the Ha. C phase (141). In 2007, H. Ciugudean and C. F. Pare (Mainz) conducted excavations at the rampart along Jidovar hill, and were able to collect wooden logs dated with 14C to the 11th century BC. Between 2010-2011, the EU financed Research Training Network Forging Identities carried out geomagnetic prospections, metal detecting and excavated two small trenches (142).
Fortified settlements are characteristic for a great part of the European Bronze Age, but research is still in an incipient phase. The German Archaeologic Institute and the Goethe University Frankfurt have therefore initiated the LOEWE project “Prähistorische Konfliktforschung: Burgen der Bronzezeit zwischen Taunus und Karpaten”. Based on long-term good cooperation between The National Museum of the Union in Alba Iulia and the Eurasia Department of the German Archaeological Institute, the two institutions decided to conduct new investigations of the fortified settlement at Teleac between 2016 and 2018. The project employs modern prospection methods, in particular geophysical investigation with magnetometer and LiDAR to survey the site and surrounding areas. Based on the prospection results, several trenches are excavated inside and outside the fortification system. C14 dating, together with paleobotanical, archaeozoological and palynoligical analysis are applied to reconstruct the habitat and the paleoenvironment from the end of the 2nd and the beginning of the 1st millennium B.C. and to provide a chronologic framework for the Late Bronze Age and beginning of the Iron Age in South-Eastern Europe.
Trench 1 (10 x 10 m) is positioned inside the settlement, approximately 15 m south of the northern fortification system.
Planum 1 begun immediately under the approximately 0.2 m thick top-soil, and planum 2 started at a depth of 0.60 m. The material discovered consists of sherds, animal bones and pieces of daub belonging to the Gáva and Basarabi cultures. The outlines of four features were identified in the first planum: A1, A6, A9 and A11. A1 and A6 are two pit-buildings. A1 was located in the SE part of the trench (dimensions: 2.60 m length, 2 m width, and 0.60 m depth). The material discovered inside the feature comprise of potsherds, daub fragments, animal bones, bronze fragments, zoomorphic clay figurines, and a fragment of an iron sickle blade. A hearth (A13) was found at the base of the building. The other pit-building (A6) was positioned in the SW part of the trench (dimensions: 5.48 m length, 3 m width). Besides ceramics and daub, clay figurines, a clay miniature wheel, bronze wire fragments and a bronze bead were collected in the building. The remains of three fire installations were found at the base of the building: Fl6, A15 and A21. A debris (A16) with remains of daub found around the fire installations is consistent with the collapsed walls of the building, under which there was a clay floor. A9 and A11 are two pits.
The second planum was identified together with feature A14, which consists of hearth fragments. Pits A17, A 18, A19, A20 were also identified in this planum. A22 was found at the base of A18 and is probably a destroyed kiln and around it we found traces of a clay floor (A23).
Trench 2 (20 x 20 m) is positioned outside the fortified settlement, 300 m east-north-east from the fortification system, on the other side of a gulley created by a spring (Pl. 1/3). Two habitation levels were found in trench 2 belonging to the Iron Age and Early Middle Age respectively.
The Iron Age level consists of features A10, A11, A12, A13, A15 and A18. The dwelling A10 (Pl. 3/1) was rectangular, and built on the Iron Age stepping level (at 0.60-65 m depth), which contained several potsherds (some from largely complete vessels), stones and burnt daub fragments. The alignment of the burnt daub (A18) seems to belong to the dwelling. Pit A13 (Pl. 3/2) has a circular shape, with the base larger than the rim. Fragments of plaster from a hearth (A11) were found in the area of this feature (Pl. 3/3).
A15 (Pl. 3/4) is another hearth, part of which had collapsed into a small pit (or over the filling of this pit). Among the Iron Age materials discovered in T2 are ceramic vessels (pots, bowls, cups and a portable hearth), spindle whorls and animal bones. Based on the pottery, the Iron Age level can be dated to the 6-5th centuries BC.
The Early Middle Age features were found at a depth of 0.15-0.20 m and consist of: A1, A2, A4 (deepened dwellings) and A3, A9 (pits). Several brick fragments discovered in quadrants 1-4/e-j suggest the presence of other medieval features. In 2016, features A1, A4 and A9 were excavated.
Several iron knife blades (Pl. 3/8) and iron fragments were found in the medieval level, but only few ceramic pieces. They belong to vessels and pots with everted rims, some of them decorated with parallel incised lines and waves. The fill of the dwellings also contained roman brick fragments. Based on the pottery, the Medieval level can be dated to 9-10th centuries AD.
Geomagnetic prospection. The Teleac hillfort and adjacent areas were surveyed during two campaigns in 2016 (Pl. 1/1). The first campaign was conducted from the 24th of May to the 1st of June, and the second from the 26th of October to the 2nd of November. The surveys were conducted with a 5-channel SENSYS MAGNETO®-MX ARCH magnetometer mounted on a 2 m wide hand-drawn fiberglass carriage with the sensors mounted in 50 cm intervals. Two smaller areas were surveyed with the sensors at a distance of 25 cm. Geo-referencing was made with a Leica DGPS with the rover on the magnetometer. Data acquisition was made with RTK fix with a positional accuracy of (±0.02/±0.02m). Primary processing and data interpolation was made with the SENSYS MonMX, DLMGPS and MAGNETO® - ARCH software package, and post-processing was carried out in Oasis montage 8. Further analysis and generation of maps were performed in QGIS 2.14.
Data evaluation. 20.3 ha were surveyed in Teleac in 2016. 7.1 ha north of the settlement and 13.2 ha inside the fortification system. The resulting magnetogram shows intensive settlement activities in almost all investigated parts of the site with flat terrain. Exceptions are the top plateau on Jidovar Hill in the eastern part of the site, and in a small area at the north – west corner of the rampart. The surveyed parts of the immediate area outside the north western part of the hillfort appear mostly empty and signs of habitation first appear at a distance of a few hundred meters north of the fortifications. Anomalies are indicative of various fire installations, pits and pit buildings found during previous excavations. There is in general a very high accordance between anomalies on the magnetogram and features found during the excavations conducted in 2016. At this stage it is however too early to determine how deep the magnetometer penetrates.
The areas north of the fortification were surveyed in order to determine if Teleac had occupation outside the fortified settlement and in an effort to try to locate the hillfort’s cemetery. Although settlement activities were found by a small creek 300 m north of the fortification system, excavations show they were not contemporary with the hillfort. In an area between two hills about 500 m north of the fortification the magnetogram shows a large concentration of 50 to 100 cm large roundish anomalies with values around 1 to 2 nT. A 4 x 4 m trench (T3) was opened directly over three of these anomalies to investigate if they were graves. The trench was excavated down to the sterile at a depth of about 160 cm without finding any traces of graves of other archaeological features.
138. V. Vasiliev, I. Al. Aldea, H. Ciugudean, Civilizaţia dacică timpurie în aria intracarpatică a României. Contribuţii arheologice: aşezarea fortificată de la Teleac, Cluj-Napoca, 1991, p. 15-16.