viereckschanze (square enclosure)

Viereckschanzen are rectangular bank and ditch enclosures dating from the Celtic period, often visible in the relief of the terrain or on aerial photographs. They occur across France, southern Germany and into Bohemia.

Their specific function has yet to be established. While they were interpreted as places purely for religious activities before, a secular use is nowadays no longer being ruled out. A ritual shaft or a well is often uncovered in a corner of the structure. Small square post constructions, which are interpreted as temples or storage buildings, are also a typical feature.

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