Archaeological landscape – the past and the present. A case study of the megalithic landscape of Wietrzychowice, Poland




archaeological landscape, megaliths, megalithic landscape, landscape changes, cultural landscape, physiognomy of landscape


Archaeological landscapes are crucial to understanding the evolution, form and meaning of cultural landscape. This paper presents a complex analysis of the archaeological landscape and its temporal and spatial changes, with particular reference to the last 200 years, using the example of a megalithic landscape with barrows in Wietrzychowice (Poland). The aim of the research was to determine the changes in the structure and function of the landscape and to identify the processes that caused these changes. A complex Model of Archaeological Landscape Analysis (MALA) was proposed which presents the current archaeological landscape and its historical changes both graphically and descriptively. The literature was studied and cartographic research was conducted, and this was supplemented by field visits. The results allowed us to distinguish 6 stages of the life-history of the analysed landscape. The megalithic landscape of Wietrzychowice represents a genetically heterogeneous, homotonous in terms of land cover, reversed (chronologically younger landscape replaced by a chronologically older landscape) stratigraphic type. The most persistent landscape type is the forest. The main processes occurring there were erosion, deforestation, afforestation, barrow construction, excavation and reconstruction. The functions changed from ecological to touristic. The visual role of the barrows as the dominant features of the landscape has varied. This method can be used in landscape protection and planning and in landscape education.


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Title image LO.2022.1099




How to Cite

Żemła-Siesicka, A. (2022). Archaeological landscape – the past and the present. A case study of the megalithic landscape of Wietrzychowice, Poland. Landscape Online, 97, 1099.



Research Article