Pulli settlement is the oldest known human settlement in Estonia. According to radiocarbon dating, Pulli was settled around 11,000 years ago. A dog tooth found at the settlement is the first evidence for the existence of the domesticated dog in the territory of Estonia.
In all 1175 different items were excavated at the Pulli settlement, among them tools used by people of the Mesolithic period, most of them made of flint. Many items were arrowheads made of flint. A few items made of bone were found too, such as fishhooks and accessories made of animal claws.
The people who lived at Pulli probably moved there from the south after the ice had melted, moving along the Daugava river in Latvia, then along the Latvian-Estonian coast of the Baltic Sea, and finally to the mouth of the Pärnu river. In 9000 BC, the Pulli settlement was located exactly where the Pärnu river flows into the Baltic sea, but today it is about 14-16 kilometers upstream from the sea.
Through almost the entire Stone Age, the Estonian area is clearly discernible as an original technocomplex, in which quartz dominates as the material for small tools produced by a splitting technique. The only exception is the Pulli site with its extensive use of imported flint.
The Pulli settlement was discovered in 1967 during excavation of sand from the right bank of the River Pärnu. Archaeological excavations were carried out in 1968-73 and 1975-76 by the Estonian archaeologist L. Jaanits.References:
The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.
The remains of the central tower are up to 3.6 metres high, and the stone walls are up to 4.1 metres thick. The tower was likely inhabited by the principal family or clan of the area but also served as a last resort for the village in case of an attack.
The broch continued to be inhabited while it began to collapse and the original structures were altered. The cistern was filled in and the interior was repartitioned. The ruin visible today reflects this secondary phase of the broch's use.
The site is surrounded by three ditches cut out of the rock with stone ramparts, encircling an area of around 45 metres diameter. The remains of numerous small stone dwellings with small yards and sheds can be found between the inner ditch and the tower. These were built after the tower, but were a part of the settlement's initial conception. A 'main street' connects the outer entrance to the broch. The settlement is the best-preserved of all broch villages.
Pieces of a Roman amphora dating to before 60 AD were found here, lending weight to the record that a 'King of Orkney' submitted to Emperor Claudius at Colchester in 43 AD.
At some point after 100 AD the broch was abandoned and the ditches filled in. It is thought that settlement at the broch continued into the 5th century AD, the period known as Pictish times. By that time the broch was not used anymore and some of its stones were reused to build smaller dwellings on top of the earlier buildings. Until about the 8th century, the site was just a single farmstead.
In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.