By Jan Klapste and Zdenek Smetanka
Ruralia, Vol.1 (1996)
Introduction: From the end of the 1950s, the exploration of Bohemian and Moravian medieval villages constituted a standard and gradually unfolding component of the programme of medieval archaeology. The idea of the medieval period in these countries covers the time between the invasion of Slavic population groups from the 6th – to the beginning of the 16th centuries. This period of history if further subdivided into a) Early Middle Ages (EMA) from the 6th to the beginning of the 13th centuries, and b) High and Late Middle Ages (HMA), from the 13th to the beginning of the 16th century. This approximate periodisation, based on historical studies, is in accordance with the archaeological evidence, what enables easier debate between various disciplines. Bohemian and Moravian history seems to have reached a general turning point during the 13th century, which is of great importance for the understanding of the changes of life in rural settlements.