Prehistoric monuments often constitute evident landmarks and sometimes, after falling into disuse, fascinated local people enough to stimulate speculations about their origin over time. According to legend, the Hill of Udine (NE Italy) was built by Attila the Hun's soldiers, but its origin (natural or anthropogenic) has been debated until now. Our research analyzed five new 40-m long stratigraphic cores, investigating for the first time the total thickness of the hill and compared the data with the available archaeological information. Moreover, we considered other hills and mounds in northern Italy and other European regions where folklore traditions relate their origin to Attila. The geoarchaeological and ethnographic data prove that the Hill of Udine is a Bronze Age anthropogenic mound erected between 1400 and 1150 BCE and that, later, folklore has transformed the ancestral memory of its origin into legend. By measuring 30 m in height and over 400,000 m3 in volume, the flat-topped hill is the largest prehistoric mound in Europe. This discovery reveals unprecedented skills in earth construction and confirms significant anthropogenic modifications of the environment during Bronze Age.

The largest prehistoric mound in Europe is the Bronze-Age Hill of Udine (Italy) and legend linked its origin to Attila the Hun / Fontana A.; Vinci G.; Ronchi L.; Mocchiutti A.; Muscio G.; Visentini P.; Bassetti M.; Novellino M.D.; Badino F.; Musina G.; Bonomi S.. - In: SCIENTIFIC REPORTS. - ISSN 2045-2322. - ELETTRONICO. - 13:(2023), pp. 1-14. [10.1038/s41598-023-35175-8]

The largest prehistoric mound in Europe is the Bronze-Age Hill of Udine (Italy) and legend linked its origin to Attila the Hun

Badino F.;
2023

Abstract

Prehistoric monuments often constitute evident landmarks and sometimes, after falling into disuse, fascinated local people enough to stimulate speculations about their origin over time. According to legend, the Hill of Udine (NE Italy) was built by Attila the Hun's soldiers, but its origin (natural or anthropogenic) has been debated until now. Our research analyzed five new 40-m long stratigraphic cores, investigating for the first time the total thickness of the hill and compared the data with the available archaeological information. Moreover, we considered other hills and mounds in northern Italy and other European regions where folklore traditions relate their origin to Attila. The geoarchaeological and ethnographic data prove that the Hill of Udine is a Bronze Age anthropogenic mound erected between 1400 and 1150 BCE and that, later, folklore has transformed the ancestral memory of its origin into legend. By measuring 30 m in height and over 400,000 m3 in volume, the flat-topped hill is the largest prehistoric mound in Europe. This discovery reveals unprecedented skills in earth construction and confirms significant anthropogenic modifications of the environment during Bronze Age.
2023
13
1
14
Fontana A.; Vinci G.; Ronchi L.; Mocchiutti A.; Muscio G.; Visentini P.; Bassetti M.; Novellino M.D.; Badino F.; Musina G.; Bonomi S.
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Utilizza questo identificatore per citare o creare un link a questa risorsa: https://hdl.handle.net/2158/1315344
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