Vabaduse Square in Tallinn has surprising archaeological finds

Excavations on Vabaduse Square in the heart of Tallinn have unearthed new archaeological finds almost every week in recent months.

Reconstruction works in the beginning of July unearthed the ruins of the tower by Harjumägi and the tower of the eastern front gate of the medieval Harju Gate, which is in good condition. In their day, these towers stood as high as the present Viru Gates. All the old buildings shown on the town plan from the 17 century have been revealed now that the towers were brought to daylight. Remnants of the fence that surrounded the monument to Peter the Great erected at the end of the tsarist period were also found.

As expected, the excavation work also revealed the ancient cemetery that used to lie outside the town wall of Tallinn. Archaeologists had marked 2454 single burials from the 14 to the 17 centuries and three mass graves of plague victims by the middle of July.

The highlight of the archaeological finds was the complete 6000-year old Neolithic village found in the end of July. The fire sites, pieces of comb ceramic vessels, bones and shreds of quarts found in the settlement allowed the archaeologists to conclude that the settlement had been a temporary stopping point of hunters and fishers. Pieces of vessels and bones from the Stone Age had been found in Tallinn before, but this was the first time a complete settlement was dug out in the capital.

The City Government is planning to exhibit the historical finds in a new underground pedestrian area. The ruins of the Harju Gate that were among the first finds will be placed under a glass cover and lit so that everyone can go and take a look.



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