Lucerne takes 2000 years of age after archaeological discovery –

Archaeologists have found traces of a 3,000-year-old village on stilts four meters below the water’s surface in the harbor of Lucerne. This is the first time that pile-dwelling remains have been discovered in Lake Lucerne.

The remains of the village on stilts were unearthed during construction work in the harbor of Lucerne, the archaeological service of the canton of Lucerne said Thursday. This finding shows that the city of Lucerne is around 2,000 years older than previously thought. People already lived on this site 3000 years ago.

Lucerne harbor is shallow. It has been the subject of archaeological research for many years. No trace of these “sunken settlements” had been found so far due to the thick layer of mud covering the bottom of the lake in the harbor.

Wood piles

The laying of a pipe was the occasion for a first study of the stratification of the bottom of the lake. Since December 2019, a team of divers from Zurich has explored the harbor. In March 2020, an excavator pulled many wooden piles out of the water. Then pottery was discovered.

The experts then noted that the trench of the pipeline passes through the middle of an area where the remains of the dwellings on stilts are located. The dating of the woods shows that these remains of settlement date back to the Bronze Age, around 1000 BC.

The discovery in the harbor of Lucerne coincides with the 10th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage listing of “prehistoric dwellings on stilts around the Alps”. Of the 111 sites on this list, 56 are located in Switzerland, including three in the canton of Lucerne. They date from 43,000 to 850 BC.


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