For some time, the use of GIS in the context of medieval studies has been increasing. Aside from providing opportunities to visualise historical data in an uncomplicated way, GIS offers numerous tools such as viewshed, kernel density estimation or georeferencing, allowing new insights into historical contexts, which at the same time can reveal new avenues for research. This paper illustrates both the potential and difficulties of working with GIS on the analysis of spatial structures in early medieval Eastern Saxony and Thuringia. The main outcomes are a very high settlement density in the entire investigation area, with special concentrations in the eastern Harz foreland, the Hassegau, as well as a rapid and early expansion of the Harz Mountains.
© 2019 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston