Dacian fortresses
from the area of Sarmizegetusa

by Ioan Glodariu

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Costesti fortress

The defence works surround a 1,000 meters high knoll and they consist of a ground elevation that blocks the access way. The elevation is overlapped by a stockade in the southern side, while the precincts wall is built with Dacian technique of Hellenistic inspiration. Partly destroyed in106 [...], the fortress was enlarged and rebuilt by the conquerors [...].

The sacred zone is situated East of the defence work. Ten rectangular sanctuaries as well as a big stone altar, were discovered, all of them made completely or mostly of limestone or andesite. The rectangular sanctuaries are limited, to the outside, by a row of stone pillars, while to the inside, massive wooden or stone columns were raised. [...] For achieving all these constructions, there is no doubt that the effort was out of common, because this area lacks in stone for building. [...]

Costesti fortress Except for its sanctuaries, the micro-area from Sarmizegetusa certifies an unwonted resembling of native (Dacian) traditional elements and Hellenistic influences [...]. At the same time, by their number and proportions as well as by their placing and way of building, the constructions from Sarmizegetusa represent the most important ancient European architectural achievements outside the Greco-Roman world; they do not have any correspondent from the same era, on the ''barbarian'' areas of the continent.

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Last update: March 24 1999 ; webdesign: Cornelia Calin