(Museen der Stadt Wien – Stadtarchäologie, Vienna, Austria)


The paper presents the current state of archaeological research in the city of Vienna.

After a very short history of Urban Archaeology in Vienna there follows an overview- divided into four chronological layers – mentioning methods, results, special problems and aims to-be of archaeological researches.


Prehistoric development of the region – between world war I and II  there existed a vivid interest for local history, which helped to establish a tradition of prehistoric research in Vienna. At the same time urban development  on the edge of the city  led to an augmentation of prehistoric finds. After a period of stagnation in the 1950ies there were done a lot of interesting new excavations.  Nevertheless  the research focus concentrated on the Roman period for a very long time. Therefore the state of research is not sufficiently developed, mapping for example is still very incomplete.

Roman Times – a very important period for research was the so called “Gründerzeit” (1840-1910). A number of vast building projects gave the opportunity to gather basic information about the contouring of the roman legionary fort, its environment as well as the  Roman civil settlement and the road system. Additionally a number of important new excavations led to new cognitions.

Therefore mapping is in a good status.

Middle Ages – due to the fact that medieval Archaeology is quite a new discipline in Austria,  the state of research is less developed than  for the Roman period. Especially our knowledge about the early Middle Ages is quite limited. A little more research is done on the further development of Vienna as a town, supported by important new excavations.

Early Modern Times –  the cityscape of Vienna is well documented from the 16th century onwards by a series of historical maps; nevertheless the consciousness of the importance of the cultural heritage of this period was in a very poor state up to the 1980ies! From the 1990ies the Stadtarchäologie Wien carried out various projects dealing with the remains of the modern period, including a series of excavations bringing up remains of the renaissance fortress of Vienna.


Development of research, excavations, mapping, development of Vienna as a town