Gjergj Frasheri, Archaeological studies in the Bechergasse and in the northern area of Alter Markt in Cologne. Report on the archaeological work during the construction of the North-South urban rail line, 2004-2009 (Köln, 2010).
Hardcover; Size: 21.0 x 29,7 cm (DIN A4)
114 pages with 110 illustrations, 104 tables with 1182 illustrations, 6 supplements
Language: German with detailed English summary
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Price: 23,20 € (exkl. tax and shipping costs)
From 2004 to 2009 intensive archaeological studies were conducted in the Bechergasse and the north-western area of the Alter Markt during rail connection of the north-south transit system by the company Stadt- und Landschaftsarchäologie (SuLA) under the project management of G. Frasheri. The Archaeological support was conducted on two building-pits, the so-called primary pits A and B, which have later been extended through a connecting-tunnel and a cavern beneath the western development of the Bechergasse, as well as several smaller interventions like digs, shafts, adits and drillings.
In the galleries and the belonging drawing pits in the area of the road Unter Taschenmacher / Kleine Budengasse / Am Hof some sections of the Roman city wall on the side of the Rhine, with remains of a rectangular tower, could have been examined. In a vertical lowered drawing pit in the Kleine Budengasse an outlet of a big Roman sewer was exposed. The channel 103 had lost its infrastructural function in the course of the 3rd century and slowly declined. However the area in front of the outlet must have staid uncovered for a longer time, so the channel will have furthermore transported sewage respectively surface water – at least to a limited extend.
The backfillings west and east of the city wall as well as traces of smaller constructions indicated that on the one hand the city-wall of the 1st century AD has, at least partly, lost its importance as a fortification already in late Roman time and on the other hand efforts have been undertaken to extend the usable terrain beyond the border towards east.
Above the late Roman levelling an up to 0.90 m thick package of barely separable humous deposits could have been proved, containing finds of the 8th and 9th century. The homogeneous, fine sediments may probably result from current flooding and heavy precipitation but also from draining off sewage and rainwater from the urban area. Remains of early mediaeval structures were found as well in the Bechergasse as in the north-western area of the Alter Markt. Due to the stratigraphical situation of the finds as well as of the constructional material and technique the buildings are considered to be erected at the end of the 8th or at the early 9th century AD. All these constructions have been broken off at the end of 9th century respectively the beginning of the 10th century AD, whereby the foundations have been covered by sandy backfills raising the terrain up to a maximum of 0.40 m.
Above this backfill remains of two sett pavings could have been investigated, dating to the end of 9th century/beginning of the 10th century and to the 12th century.
The cut late mediaeval up to modern foundations and basement walls showed that the course as well as the borders of the Bechergasse inside of the late mediaeval urban centre has been clearly defined at latest during the 14th century. Since the Middle of the 19th century the uncovering and the completion of the Cologne Cathedral caused basic changes for the cathedral quarter as well as its surrounding narrow alleys, affecting the Bechergasse as well. In 1893 the eastern row of houses has been relocated backwards during the construction work. Within the reconstruction after the Second World War the western and eastern row of houses has again been repositioned, whereas today's appearance of the Bechergasse developed.