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The Transition to Late Antiquity, on the Danube and Beyond$
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Andrew Poulter

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264027

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264027.001.0001

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The Fortresses of Thrace and Dacia in the Early Byzantine Period

The Fortresses of Thrace and Dacia in the Early Byzantine Period

Chapter:
(p.479) 19 The Fortresses of Thrace and Dacia in the Early Byzantine Period
Source:
The Transition to Late Antiquity, on the Danube and Beyond
Author(s):

V. DINCHEV

Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197264027.003.0019

During the early Byzantine period (395–610), a large number of non-urban sites, recorded in ancient sources, are known to have existed in the dioceses of Thrace and Dacia. Contemporary sources suggest that they all possessed fortifications. Amongst the fortified settlements of the early Byzantine period, there were two main groups which can be identified. The first group includes the quasi-urban centres with an intramural area of more than one hectare and the second includes fortified villages, with an intramural area of less than one hectare. This chapter describes the different kinds of fortresses which existed in the dioceses of Thrace and Dacia from AD 395 to 610. It examines the character of the fortresses and internal structures and identifies different types. Finally, it addresses the functions of these sites, especially their role in the defensive system which protected the eastern Balkans during the early Byzantine period.

Keywords:   Byzantine period, fortresses, Thrace, Dacia, fortifications, quasi-urban centres, fortified villages, Balkans

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