Merovingian Age (430 - 751 AD)
Trade and Change
The Early Middle Ages are characterized by cultural, political and social change. Perhaps the biggest change was the slowly progressing change of faith to Christianity. The Church became one of the most important institutions, both in the religious as well as in the cultural and political spheres.
The trade network was further expanded and there was brisk trade in furs, wine, spices, textiles, ceramics, metalware, and even slaves. Specialized craft shops were established at royal courts and popular trading emporiums, where there were not only simple blacksmiths but also smiths specializing in weapons, gold, and silver. In the 8th century, Westphalia was incorporated into the Carolingian Empire.
Excavation Find of a Farmstead in Warendorf
Warendorf, Westphalia, early medieval, Saxon farmstead, 7th / 8th century
The Warendorf settlement complex contains more than 220 floorplans of houses of various sizes.
The colours highlight the respective buildings per settlement phase.
Each homestead consisted of multiple buildings, including open hall residential buildings, stables, barns, pit houses, and surrounding palisades.
Early Medieval Farmstead:
around 700 BC
The archaeological foundations of the farmstead originate from excavations in Warendorf and Halle-Künsebeck in Westphalia and can be dated to the 7th / 8th century.
The settlement reflects a form of settlement as it was spread throughout the early medieval Central and Northern Europe. The complex consists of a longhouse, a forge, and a pit house. People and animals lived under one roof in farmsteads, mostly in the longhouse, and this remained common practice for a long period of time.
The nave shaped longhouse from Warendorf has an unusual construction: the weight of the roof rests mainly on massive external beams of oak. This means that the interior can remain free of supporting pillars.