Spectacular archaeological vestiges are discovered at foot of Enisala citadel

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The archaeologists of the Eco-Museum Research Institute (ICEM) in Tulcea (north-east of Bucharest) discovered traces of some settlements of the Aeneolithic Age at the foot of the hill on which the Enisala citadel is situated, which will be able to give a picture of the evolution of the human communities in the area.

The archaeological research started in the context of the project of the County Council on building a tourist miniport in the area. The man in charge of the Enisala-Palace site, Sorin Ailincai, said that diggings would affect a total area of almost 8,000 square metres.

‘The vestiges are very spectacular. Practically they have identified traces of people living in the Aeneolithic Age, traces of the Gumelnita culture, which can be traced back to the 5th millennium BC, a settlement in the first Iron Age, the Babadag culture in the 8th century BC. The most recent traces date back to the 14ty-15th centuries,’ ICEM representative Sorin Ailincai told Agerpres.

He also said that the discoveries could not be conserved and that they were to be registered by specific methods and placed at the disposal of the researchers into the history of Dobruja.

‘The discoveries that have been made here are contemporary with the ones on the Taraschina site in the Danube Delta and subsequent studies will help us know better the evolution of the human communities in the area. Experts from Bucharest will join us,’ said researcher Sorin Ailincai.

According to him, the site has been known since the ‘60s, when they made the first archaeological research there, on the initiative of the former ICEM manager, the well-known historian Simion Gavrila. Other researches were also carried out in 1979, 1986 and 2010, all of them being occasioned by various investments or for setting up some farm exploitations.

The Enisala citadel, a monument of military architecture that is quite unique in Romania, was built in the second half of the 14th century by the authorities controlling the commercial routes in this area at that time, most probably the Genovese. According to ICEM, when it comes to this monument, what catches the eye as a special architectural element is the bastion of the main gate, of an Oriental origin, which was quite frequent in the Middle Ages and was used by Byzantine builders in various buildings in the Balkan Peninsula. Between 1397 and 1418, at the time of Mircea the Old’s reign, the citadel was part of the defence system of Wallachia. After the Ottomans conquered Dobruja, an Ottoman military garrison was set up here.

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