Sponsored by: Willamette University and the Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology
Dr. Mario Ramirez Galan
Universidad de Alcalia, Spain/University of Portland
The battle of Alcala la Vieja (1118) took place 900 years ago in Alcala de Henares (Madrid) and we decided to carry out an investigation with the purpose of locating the combat area. Throughout our research, we noticed several mistakes in the written sources and these findings gave us the opportunity of proposing a new theory about the battle development, using Geographic Information Systems.
We carried out a study of the terrain based on landscape archaeology. The relationship between the environment and the archaeological site is very important, but even more in battlefield archaeology because the landscape is the archaeological site itself. It was necessary analyzing visibilities, distances and optimal paths to gain a complete knowledge of the military engagement and rewriting the battle of Alcala la Vieja.
Our final goal is to carry out a geophysical survey next summer in order to get the archaeological remains which will reinforce our theory.