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The very first man in Slovenia!

Even the prehistoric man knew that Vrhnika is the right choice! The oldest female skull found in Vrhnika attests to that.
Hunting camp (Illustration Igor Rehar)
Wheel 5200 at Ljubljanica River Exhibition
Wheel 5200 at Ljubljanica River Exhibition
Female skull (photo: Narodni muzej Slovenije)
Female skull (photo: Narodni muzej Slovenije)
Finds from Ljubljanica River (photo: Narodni muzej Slovenije)
Finds from Ljubljanica River (photo: Narodni muzej Slovenije)

Numerous archaeological findings demonstrate the long history of human settlement of Vrhnika area. Some of the findings stand out even on a global scale: a wooden spear point is estimated to be between 38,000 and 45,000 years old and is the oldest such find discovered to date. At Zaloka the archeologists found Stone Age hunters’ camps from the 8th millennium BC and among other items and findings they retrieved a female skull, which is the oldest human skeletal remain found in Slovenia. So, according to the known data, Vrhnika is the place, where the first woman in Slovenia walked and lived! But we’re not through … At Hočevarica researchers discovered copper axes from the 4th millennium BC and they are one of the oldest evidence of metallurgical activities in the southeastern Alps.

Ancient history

One of the most important findings in the world belongs to the period of ancient history. In 2002 a wooden wheel with an axle was found in the area of pile-dwellers' settlement near Verd (called ‘Stare gmajne’). The wheel is estimated to be 5,200 years old and is the oldest wooden wheel in the world ever found.

Pile-dwellers

Blatna Brezovica and Bevke – villages in the surroundings of Vrhnika – are sites of pile-dwellings from the time of Eneolithic (5,000-3,000 BC). Pile-dwellers lived in settlements built on wooden piles rammed into the lake floor and their culture was, of course, connected to nature in every aspect. They were stockbreeders and hunters, but at the same time fruits and other nature products represented an important part of their nutrition. They believed in Mother Earthworshipped the Sun and made gorgeous pottery applicable for everyday and spiritual use. Even existence of metallurgy has been proven by discoveries of copper axes and molds. For navigation on the lake the pile-dwellers used dugout canoes.

In the middle of the 2nd millennium BC the lake in the area of the Ljubljana Marshes began to transform into a bog. Consequently peat covered the remains of the pile-dwellings settlements for a long period of time.