Those who join the archaeological crew at the Celtic-Iron Age necropolis and Roman settlement of Pintia will undertake a unique experience that combines archaeological fieldwork and cultural immersion.
For the past 10 years, ArchaeoSpain and the University of Valladolid have worked together at Pintia to help create a window into the lives of the ancient Vaccean culture, an Iron Age people with Celtic links that settled in north-central Spain around the 5th century BC.
Our focus is the excavation of their cemetery, located about 300 meters (984 feet) from the main settlement. It was used between the 4th century BC and the 1st century.
In the past decade archaeologists have uncovered more than 200 cremation tombs, including those of warriors, women and children. The grave goods recovered have been essential to the study of the social organization of these pre-Roman peoples. For example, not long ago the Pintia crews excavated 44 tombs containing around 600 man-made artifacts. In one section around 100 giant limestone slabs (some weighing nearly a metric ton) covered the tombs, which protected them from subsequent farming and left the funerary jars and grave goods in excellent condition.The artifacts recovered included daggers, broaches, spear points, grills, knives, tongs, tweezers, shaving blades and necklaces.
This coming summer the plan is to excavate a new area in the necropolis.
Also, each week the archaeologists will prepare seminars and workshops concerning the fieldwork and the history of Pintia. Topics include Funerary Archaeology, Archaeological Drawing, and a day-long theoretical and practical course in human and animal bone studies by professors from the Valladolid University Medical School. We will also hold a Vaccean pottery workshop, during which we will create and decorate our own replicas.
The group will also tour several historical sites in the area, such as the Roman aqueduct of Segovia, the Roman city of Clunia, and Valladolid. Visiting these places is essential to understand the historical context of the archaeological work at Pintia. Participants are expected to contribute to all aspects of the project, including excavation, mapping, photography, and artifact conservation and cataloging.