Karl-Heinz Knörzer

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Karl-Heinz Knörzer (born April 28, 1920 ; † May 4, 2009 ) was a German high school teacher and archaeobotanist .

Live and act

Knörzer received his doctorate in 1958 at the University of Cologne with a work on the sociology of plants, The plant communities of the forests in the northern Rhineland between Niers and Nieder-Rhein and experimental studies on the influence of some tree species on their herbaceous layer . He worked as a biology teacher at the Quirinus grammar school in Neuss .

When charred plant remains were discovered in the excavation of the Neuss-Grimlinghausen Roman camp in 1960 , he agreed to identify the plant remains in addition to his job. By examining charred plant remains or plant remains preserved under damp conditions, he opened up a new type of find for Rhenish archeology at an early stage, which enables statements to be made about nutrition , trade relationships, cultivation, harvest and conservation techniques and the environmental history of the excavated sites. The initial focus on the great Roman excavations in the Rhineland was later followed by projects from prehistory to the Middle Ages ; The open pit lignite mining on the left bank of the Rhine and the rescue excavations it required, for example on the Aldenhovener Platte in Langweiler 2 and 9 , led to a focus in the Neolithic Age .

More than 100 publications by Knörzer on plant remains from archaeological excavations “have made the Rhineland one of the best-researched archaeobotanical landscapes in the world. The national and international recognition that he enjoyed is all the more remarkable as he did research on the side ”. In 1993, the Archaeo-Physika series published by the Rhineland Regional Council published a commemorative publication for Knörzer ( 7000 years of rural landscape: creation, research, conservation ). A few months before his death, the history of the synanthropic flora in the Lower Rhine region , summarizing his results - plant finds from archaeological excavations, was published with a complete catalog of all 274 sites from the Rhineland.



  • Investigation of large subfossil plant remains in the Rhineland. Bonner Jahrbücher , Supplements 23 (1967 = also Archaeo-Physika Vol. 2)
  • with Walter Janssen : The early medieval low castle near Haus Meer , City of Meerbusch, Grevenbroich district. Series of publications of the Grevenbroich district, No. 8 (1970)
  • Roman times plant finds from Xanten. Archaeo-Physika Vol. 11 (1981)
  • with Renate Gerlach, Jutta Meurers-Balke , Arie J. Kalis, Ursula Tegtmeier, Wolf D. Becker, Antonius Jürgens: PflanzenSpuren. Archaeobotany in the Rhineland: Agricultural landscape and useful plants through the ages. Materials for the preservation of monuments in the Rhineland, 10 (1999)
  • Jutta Meurers-Balke: The early Holocene flora of the Rhine valley near Neuss and the Erftaue near Hombroich. Decheniana - supplements 38 (1999)
  • History of the synanthropic flora in the Lower Rhine region - plant finds from archaeological excavations. Rhenish excavations, vol. 61 (2009)

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Renate Gerlach Obituary for the death of Dr. Dr. hc Karl-Heinz Knörzer Archeology in Germany, 11 August 2009.
  2. ↑ Office of the Federal President
  3. Dr. Karl-Heinz Knörzer is 80 years old today / A pioneer of archaeobotany . NGZ from April 28, 2000