||VILLAGES WITH DITCHES
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Description of the local variant of the technique
The technique of drainage ditches was spread in this region 6000 years ago since the Neolithic peoples built over 3000 villages surrounded by crescent-shaped trenches. The study of these villages has shown that the drainage ditches were used to reclaim and bring to use the land (Tinè, 1983; Leuci, 1991). This area, situated at the foot of the Ridge of Gargano, responds to the characteristics of hydromorphic soils, near wetlands, soft and rich fertile soil, chosen by the early Neolithic. Moisture conditions have led to the digging of ditches to adjust the excess water. The moats then responded to environmental needs maintaining dry land for cultivation during the wet season and acting as troughs, water tanks and collectors of humus.
Types of Neolithic villages. The layout evidences the perimeter of ditches. The entrances always have an east-west orientation. Often the perimeters were not closed off, taking on the shape of a half-moon, or they have branches, demonstrating the use of the tunnels as being related to water resources and not for defensive purposes.